EVERY intensive care nurse and doctor should watch this 4-minute film: it will change you forever!

Kathy’s Story:

I woke up on intensive care. My eyes were swollen shut. My jaw was wired closed. There was a machine forcing air through a hole in my throat. I couldn’t see, I couldn’t speak, I couldn’t drink, I couldn’t even breathe for myself but I could hear EVERYTHING.

I searched through all the noises of a busy intensive care unit for any sign about what was happening to me, or likely to happen to me. And then a machine would bleep loudly. I didn’t know what it was and I thought that maybe I was going to die…

If you would like to download this video to use in your own group or organisation, please follow this link.

12 Responses to “EVERY intensive care nurse and doctor should watch this 4-minute film: it will change you forever!”

  1. Renee Cooper says:

    Kathy doesn’t mention when she was in the ICU, but as an RN who was
    trained in a 3 year hospital, graduating with a Diploma in Nursing, I can tell you that we were taught to use communication, in lay terms, and explain what we were doing for our patients, even if they were in a state of apparent unconciousness. We learned that, even in a comatose state, hearing is the last sense to leave and people, very often are able to hear even if they cannot speak or acknowledge our presence. In surgery we were trained to be very quiet during anesthetic induction, because, again, hearing is the last sense to leave. I will not tell you when I graduated, only that I have many years of experience, in many different disciplines, in nursing. Due to an incident beyond my control, I was forced to leave nursing, for a time, taking an early retirement. During this time I continued to keep up with changes and updates happening in my profession and kept my license current.
    Over time, I became able to work, again,and began to apply for positions. I was unsuccessful in even getting an interview, I believe, because of my age, and not having yet completed my BSN, which I Continued to work toward. I am still a very skilled nurse, and have a great deal of knowledge, acquired during my many years of practice. Knowledge that cannot be learned from a book, only by hands on, bedside care of patients! I still have much to GI e patients, like Kàthy, as well as younger, and less knowledgeable nurses. It’s too bad that the human resources departments seem to consider older nurses, who trained in the 20th century, as disposable, and of no value to 21st century nursing. A 70+ year old person, today, is much younger, physically, and mentally, than a70+ year old person, even 2 decades ago. When I talk to older individuals, who have recently spent time in the hospital, and I ask them to tell me what they estimate the average age of the nurses who cared for them, it was under 50! They also said that they felt that they were basically ignored, when they had a comment
    complaint and had not control o er their care! We were always taught that, people admitted to the hospital do feel like they have lost control so it is important to listen, validate their complaints or concerns, and assure them that their concerns will be
    addressed to the best of our ability. So maybe it’s tome to rethink the hiring practies of human resources, if there are no nurses older than 50, working in a Healthcare facility!

  2. Leanne says:

    Im care worker & i have always said to my co workers or student’s, just because the residents cant communicate dosen’t mean they cant here what your saying. If your taking make sure you include the resident. Just because if done has dementia dosen’t mean they dont know what your saying. No matter what the situation is ,communicate al the time.
    Thank you Kathy turly a awesome story & i hope many Dr, Nurses, carers learn from it.

    Kind Regards Leanne

  3. Robin says:

    This video is now up to 45,000 views on YouTube and is influencing care all around the world! Thank you Kathy for this precious gift 🙂

  4. Honeysuckle says:

    Keep these arictles coming as they’ve opened many new doors for me.

  5. lynn moore says:

    Kathy thank you for sharing. I awoke in an out of state icu after a seven hour liver surgery groggy and had an exceptional experience of my nurses and doctor telling me and reminding me how I was. tubes everywhere and monitor beeping. It made a huge difference in my own coping. I m so thankful for you re sharing and you re wellness

  6. Mohan Ipe Dr says:

    I am a doctor in charge of a multispecialty hospital. your story is quite touching. thank you for sharing your appreciation of the male nurse who treated you as a human being; not as a patient. this is something we try to tell and teach the doctors, nurses and other healthcare givers, to communicate well to the ones who get admitted to get treated. I shall share your story with my peers and co- workers.
    regards & god bless

  7. Sue Baron says:

    Thank you for sharing your story Kathy – if you are agreeable,I would like to show your film to undergraduate nursing students as part of a therapeutic communications unit. You story imparts a clear and poignant message which I believe will help nursing students to understand that, even when delivering care to someone they might deem to be otherwise unresponsive, they must still communicate with that person. Something I powerfully learnt from my own experiences as a nurse; one particular story from which I currently share with students to deliver this very message. With your film, my intention is to deliver an even more powerful message that will leave a long-lasting reminder to each student of the importance always communicating with each person in their care as a human being, and in every situation. Inspirational. Thank you, Sue

  8. Robin says:

    In just five days, this video has been watched by 7,600 11,600 people in 89 94 countries! Kathy should be on TED Talks!

  9. I have the same “love” or caring for my PSW’s in St. Vincent’s Hosp. in Ottawa in 2000. I can see their faces and most days rmemeber their names, but thank you so much for caring for me as if I am a member of your family. Espirensa, Doria and Jacques! I do love you and so appreciate everything you said and did for me.

  10. Payal says:

    The above video is definitely inspiring, if we all practice this for all patients then the recovery will be much easier and they feel much better quicker. Often staff are so busy rushing around that they forget that the patient is a person lying there. As part of the teachings of my Church, we are taught that we if talk lovingly to a patient half their problem is over, as this video also demonstrates this clearly I have also experienced this when I have practised this with my patients too. Perhaps as part of medical training of any kind, personnel need to be encouraged to be compassionate, and not frowned upon just because one is being friendly and caring towards a patient.

  11. Beth Boynton says:

    Great story and thanks for all of your wonderful work. I’ll blog about it at Confident Voices in Healthcare. I believe the nurse she spoke about was inclusive and honoring of his relationship with Cathy. I do think it may take just a little more time to practice this kind of nursing and that it is important to recognize that so we can be mindful and be present for all of our patients. It means we are listening rather than thinking about the next task we have to do, med we have to give, doctor we have to call, alarm we have to turn off, doctors order we have to transcribe, assessment we have to enter into the computer, family member we have to contact or problem we have to solve. To the patient or outsider, this listening doesn’t take any time, but it requires that we slow down a little bit and pay attention. It is safer, kinder, and ultimately more cost effective because we will make less mistakes.

  12. Suzanne says:

    Amazing story kathy…thank you for sharing at the event and now through the web. I hope all healthcare professionals look again at what they do from listening to your story. Suzanne

“When all members of an organization are motivated to understand and value the most favourable features of its culture, it can make rapid improvements.”