Make kindness your mission

December 10, 2019 | by Mary Lou Mastro

Person-centered care requires a deliberate effort to put yourself in someone else’s shoes.

Empathy keeps us centered on our mission: providing safe, seamless and personal care to all our patients.

It’s wonderful to see this in practice among our staff at work. It’s just as heartwarming to hear stories about our employees’ kindness in force outside the workplace.

Area resident Dorothy Douglas let us know about one Edward-Elmhurst Health employee who offered much-needed support in a recent time of distress.

LaToiya Christian, our lead patient services representative at the North Naperville Immediate Care Center, was in the right place at the right time to show compassion.

“I had a pretty bad car accident during evening rush hour,” Dorothy says in an email. “I am recovering (although my back and neck are pretty sore).  I had my dog, Cubbie, in the car, who had just had three teeth pulled. Yikes!

“After the accident I was in a Walgreens parking lot, pretty shook up, and my dog was bleeding from the mouth. It was pretty cold out that evening. I climbed out of the passenger door with my dog, and LaToiya came out of nowhere and offered me a lot of comfort.

“She offered to watch my dog while we waited for the police to arrive. LaToiya got a blanket out of her car and wrapped my bleeding dog in it. She held onto him that entire time.

“I can’t tell you how much it meant to me to have a comforting voice during that very stressful time. That she lovingly took care of my dog while I was still in shock was super comforting to me, because he is still my baby.”

Dorothy asked us to “tell (LaToiya) again how thankful I am that I had an angel looking after me and Cubbie during a crisis moment in my life.”

When we told LaToiya that Dorothy had contacted us, her reaction wasn’t surprising.

“WOW! You will never understand how much she has been on my mind. I was so worried about them both, because as she explained the dog was bleeding so badly from his mouth. I am overjoyed to hear that they are both recovering well, I am literally in tears right now.

“Everything happened in front of me so fast I never had time to take off my uniform jacket and she could see that I worked for our hospital. However, the only thing that I would tell her about myself was my first name because all I wanted from her was to know that in that moment she was not alone.”

Like so many of her co-workers, LaToiya put our person-centered care philosophy into practice outside the four walls of her workspace.

Empathy and kindness are gifts we can share year-round.

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