Communication and Compassion in the Oncology Setting

Published on: 
Extraordinary Healer®, Extraordinary Healer® Volume 17, Volume 17,

Georgia Smith's, M.S.N., FNP-BC, impact both at the bedside and as a nurse practitioner is incredible.

Georgia Smith, M.S.N., FNP-BC, worked on our unit as a bedside nurse and then transitioned to become our gynecologic oncology nurse practitioner. Georgia is one of the greatest nurses I have ever known, and her impact both at the bedside and as a nurse practitioner is incredible. She provides such an above-and-beyond level of care that when she is not here, her absence is certainly felt.

Georgia’s main strength is end-of-life care and explaining goals of care to patients and their families. She spends an immense amount of time with each patient, explaining things in a way that completely changes the patient’s perspective for the better. Patients are able to understand the importance of comfort at the end of life, and the communication skills that Georgia uses have given countless patients a more dignified death than they would have had otherwise. Georgia takes on each patient and personally cares for them and about them.

Georgia also makes a significant impact on quality improvement here at Duke. Recently, she created a communication algorithm to improve MD-to-RN communication for the night shift. She identified an area that needed improvement and took it upon herself to create a tool that benefits everyone. She always takes the initiative to ensure that her patients are getting the greatest care possible.

In my 10 years of nursing, I have never seen an advanced practice provider be more personable and care the way that Georgia does for women with gynecologic cancers. It is truly her passion, and anyone who meets her can tell. I have seen Georgia pour her heart and soul into caring for these women, and no one is more deserving of recognition for her impact on cancer care.

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