When it comes to working in healthcare, anyone can make a difference at any given moment. Bayhealth Hospital, Sussex Campus nurse Christy Breeding had been on the job less than a year when she made a lasting impression on the family of one patient. This impact led to Breeding’s nomination and subsequent win of the nationally recognized DAISY Award.
The DAISY Award honors the unsung heroes of the nursing profession. The honor was created by the DAISY Foundation, which was formed in 2000 by the family of J. Patrick Barnes, and helps fund research and projects that impact the treatment of patients with the same autoimmune disease that claimed his life.
The nomination came from the family member of a deceased patient whom Breeding cared for. The nominator wrote of their gratitude for the compassion and attentiveness Breeding provided in comforting the family. It was Breeding’s simple gestures – speaking gently with the patient and family, spending meaningful time with the patient and ordering a hospitality cart – that meant the most to the family. “She is an asset to Bayhealth and is the epitome of a great nurse whom we will never forget,” the nominator wrote.
Breeding was shocked to receive the award but also honored to be recognized so early in her career. Losing a patient was a painful experience, but one she knows will be met with a lot of good experiences. “As nurses, we see people from all walks of life. Some of us are there at the beginning of their lives, while others are there at the end. This is why it’s so important to remember to be patient, caring and compassionate to everyone we meet,” Breeding said.
For Breeding, working in the healthcare field is a natural fit. As a consummate team player who played sports all her life, the idea of becoming a nurse stemmed from a movie she watched. Seeing how nurses worked together as a team in the movie struck a chord. “I always knew I wanted to help others, and I get to do that in my job. Patients come here scared and feeling bad, quite often at their lowest point. To see them smiling when they leave is gratifying. I enjoy helping and caring for people,” Breeding said.