An open letter to CMC Mercy

To the President of CMC Mercy,

And also to the fourth floor caregivers who were working the dates of Feb 26-28. Particularly those who assisted in room 4121.

This includes but is not limited to nurses Beth, Brittany, and Hana. Nurses assistant Travis.
Also to the lady who assisted me with checkin, the lady who took my Xrays, the man who took my MRI and the folks who helped me with the lovely tilt table test.
Also to the folks who brought me meals.
Also to both doctors who assisted me –

(I know I have left folks out, and admittedly I was pretty out of it during some of the time I was there. I do apologize for not remembering everyone!)

I want to say thank you.

I never intended to visit your workplace on Saturday, February 26. I have never stayed as a patient in the hospital before, but I have stayed at various hospitals as a caregiver to my grandmother. So when I was admitted to CMC Mercy and was told I would have to spend the night (it ended up being 3 nights, between your hospital and CMC University), I was expecting to deal with the horror stories I’d heard about hospitals.

I was expecting to have to hit the call button several times before getting attention. I was expecting the food to be less than exciting. I was expecting it to be a cold, almost uncaring place.

None of these things came true. In fact, I was so care for by you that when I thought I was going home after the first evening, I felt fear. I was in so much pain that I wanted to stay there, under your care. And I did stay another night (another test needed to be run), and I was so relieved.

I rarely needed to push the call button because there was always someone close to check on me. I felt as if my well-being was truly, truly cared for.

I didn’t eat much because I had injury to my mouth and it was painful to eat, and the sweet lady who brought me food stopped in to ask me if there was something better she could bring me that I might rather eat. The guy who brought me dinner my last night knew of my mouth injury and took the time to cut up a piece of chicken into small bites in hopes that would help me eat it better.

When I was offered aromatherapy and a massage I thought I must be mistaken and be at a spa instead! The aromatherapy was wonderful. Unfortunately there was no massage therapist on the days I was there (Saturday-Monday), but just the fact that you offer this service is so wonderful.

The nurses were so kind, not just to me but to my friends and family who visited me. I love the caregiver partner passes you offered my family for discounts in the dining room. And the coffee and snacks for them was also wonderful.

I know that my injury was likely minor compared to others you must’ve seen (I was admitted because I fainted and fell on my face.) But to me it was so terrifying and I never once felt that others weren’t sympathetic. Everyone was so nice and understanding about the pain I was in and truly did everything they could to lessen that pain.

I hope I never have to be admitted again, but I know if I ever do need to return to the hospital, I will most certainly ask to be taken to CMC Mercy. (For the record, CMC University was wonderful too, I just didn’t make it past the ER there.)

Thank you so very much for making me feel so cared for during the scariest part of my life thus far. I will never forget this experience, or you.

Sincerely,

Melissa

*Update: They emailed me back:

Dear Ms Oyler,

I just received your email and as the Chief Nurse at CMC MERCY I want to thank you for taking the time to send this. I am copying Chan Roush our hospital president and Barbara Clark the nurse manager for 4North. I will be sure to send thank you notes to the staff you identified as outstanding care givers. I am sending it to the other departments that you recognized so the leaders can share your wonderful words with the team. I do hope that you are feeling stronger each day and that you are able to share your story with others in the community as we want CMC Mercy to be a facility that provides excellence in patient centered care.

Janet Handy
Vice President/ Chief Nurse
Carolinas Medical Center Mercy