Providing Empathy, Strength and Support for Patients with Cancer

August 3, 2019

“It takes a special kind of person to be an oncology nurse,” wrote Donna Hornbuckle in her nomination essay of Julie Burris, RN for CURE®’s 2019 Extraordinary Healer® Award. "She gives the gift of time to every patient."

It takes a special kind of person to be an oncology nurse. In fact, I have been blessed to have all good oncology/radiation nurses over the years. They take their jobs seriously. What sets Julie Burris, RN, apart from all the rest, in my mind, are her listening skills and her jovial demeanor (which is a real plus in her line of work).

She projects empathy, strength and support. You want to please her. She takes her time and answers every question completely, no matter how trivial. She can also zero in on what you didn’t say to address any other concerns. She follows up on all commitments/requests.

She is the epitome of reassurance, raising your hopes from the depths of despair (a.k.a. the emotional cancer rollercoaster). She does all this without sugarcoating anything. It is truly amazing. She gives the gift of time to every patient. I have never felt rushed.

Bottom line: I always feel better after talking with her, because I feel safe with her.

Teaching Moment:

She is the epitome of reassurance, raising your hopes from the depths of despair.


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