An Everyday Miracle for Patients With Cancer

Extraordinary Healer®, Extraordinary Healers Vol. 9, Volume 9, Issue 1

An essay from our Extraordinary Healers book honoring Lenora Drum, RN [Bangalore Oncology Clinics of Tracy and Stockton, California]

Lenora Drum, RN with Kurt Brader - PHOTO BY KELLY MARIE BURNS

Having trained as a U.S. Army combat medic in 1988, I have some perspective on what makes a good nurse and health care provider. As I have journeyed from several full-care hospitals to many oncology clinics, I can emphatically declare that Lenora Drum outclasses and outperforms all other nurses!

Lenora Drum's devotion to duty is amazing. She commutes between two clinics, (one in Tracy, the other in Stockton, California). Lenora sees an average of 10 to 18 patients a day, with just two weeks' vacation a year. This translates to up to 4,500 patients a year! Beyond all, Lenora has the grace and touch of a highly skilled nurse through the experience she has gained over time — and even more with her marvelous, positive personality. She can even be seen on YouTube in a clinic video (Dr. Bangalore's "Ghostbusters") that supports the clinic and its open atmosphere.

Lenora's vast knowledge and insight into oncology needs prevents many problems, such as wounds, before they occur or become "emergencies." She does not play favorites with patients, respecting those who arrive on schedule, which keeps clinics flowing smoothly.

Before beginning her 15-year career as an oncology nurse, Lenora worked in medical surgical nursing. She teaches and develops in-service programs for chemotherapy and biotherapy, and is certified through the Oncology Nursing Society. Often, she is the last member of the clinic to leave after all work is done.

Lenora utilizes her 15 years of oncology nursing experience and expertise in chemotherapy procedures, medical characteristics, side effects, intravenous therapies, P ICC l ine s , antibiotics, cancer prevention and resistance. She is like a walking database for her patients. Her phlebotomist work is extremely accurate, reducing the need for IV port lines. She is exceedingly responsive to patients' needs, carefully securing IV sites with towels for warmth and stability. She even remembered my most accessible veins for IV work, which avoided much of the scar tissue I had endured over more than a year of cancer treatments.

Because most oncology patients require long-term care, Lenora gets to know her patients and their special needs. This greatly contributes to their positive outlook and recovery. And in turn, patients get to know and trust her. For her patients, Lenora is an everyday miracle.