Straight Talk - "Heroic and happy result"

May 1, 2014

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Easter weekend was a significant one for teamwork at NCH, particularly for our extraordinary blood bank colleagues, who are usually in the background but whose contributions should never be underestimated. I’ll let an email from Danielle Byers, RN, BSN, speak for what happened:

“On Saturday in the Operating Room, we received an emergent call from Obstetrics about a patient delivered two hours prior, who was hemorrhaging. She needed to come to the Operating room for what Dr. Emily Clements scheduled as a D&C for control of bleeding. Dr. Tom Cook and an anesthesia student went to assist in transfer. While waiting I was called again by Cathy Stevens, RN from OB stating the patient was crashing and on her way. When she arrived, she was not only accompanied by Anesthesia but also Melody Bacon and Chris Raphael and one or two nurses from OB. It was a crazy situation. The patient was transferred to the Operating Room table at which time the Anesthesia students along with Dr. Cook worked feverishly to resuscitate the patient with fluid volume and trendelenberg position. Dr. Clements decided that an abdominal hysterectomy would be necessary and that the D&C was no longer an option.

“Our people were amazing. Melody, Chris and the nurses from OB were vital in getting the patient to the OR with amazing speed. The young anesthesia students, Samantha Thomas, Erin Wilson and Nathan Moos, along with the expertise of Dr. Cook, were able to resuscitate the patient with 17 units of blood products and fluids. The students did an awesome job and should be very proud of themselves. Wes Whitright, CRNA, also came to assist the anesthesia team and was imperative to this patient’s survival. Thank you to all of them.

“The situation was dire at best and I was so fortunate to have the help of endo nurses Carolyn Davie, RN and Janet Tipper, RN. They came to help of their own accord and aided in the checking of blood products, running for everything and anything that needed to be done to help. My scrub was Yves Desruisseaux, ST, who was phenomenal in her knowledge and skill in providing the physicians with what they needed to care for this patient. In all my years of OR experience, I have come to realize that the caliber of a scrub tech is imperative to the outcome of a procedure. Yves is an A+ surgical technician. Josh Weeks from SPD also made himself available for anything we needed. Finally, Mariesa Menghini, blood bank lab assistant, performed her job with amazing speed and skill. She provided the numerous units of blood products, in minimal time. She even delivered them when necessary, was patient and always professional.

“The bottom line is that all those involved in the care of this new mother worked as a team to provide care that saved this woman's life. As life threatening a situation as this was, I am proud to be part of a team that was able to provide Level I trauma care to a very ill patient, which resulted in a positive outcome.

Danielle’s is an amazing story of incredible teamwork. But since last week was Laboratory Appreciation Week, let me focus on the contributions of our laboratory technologist and blood bank specialist Jim McGrady along with Mariesa Menghini, who supplied 17 units of blood products—fresh frozen, packed cells, cryoprecipitate—all within an astounding 30 minutes. Both of our campus labs have this capability, as they are supplied by the Community Blood Center, an affiliate of the NCH Healthcare System, which supplies every hospital in Collier County with life-saving blood products.

When a donor gives the gift of life at any of the Community Blood Center locations in Naples, Bonita Springs or on the blue and white Community Blood Center bloodmobiles, he or she is helping to ensure adequate levels of blood products are available in area hospitals and ready for local patients, friends or family who suddenly need them. All of the blood collected here, stays here. And thanks to our blood donors and all of our dedicated NCH colleagues, these kinds of stories are, thankfully more often than not, the heroic and happy result.


Allen S. Weiss, M.D., President and CEO

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