When Eyes and Words Become Smiles and Hugs During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Extraordinary Healer®, Extraordinary Healer® Vol. 15, Volume 15,

One team of oncology nurses rose above the challenges during the pandemic to continually care for their patients in different ways.

I would like to nominate the entire clinical and nursing team at Los Angeles Cancer Network. In the middle of March 2020, the entire staff covering six offices have screened, cleaned and comforted thousands of patients and continued to safely treat them during the COVID-19 pandemic. At a time when our patients need hugs and touches more than ever, their eyes became their smiles and their words became their hugs as their faces and bodies were covered in full personal protective equipment. They assisted patients through lifesaving cancer therapies, and comforted them and their families when theirs was a battle not to be won. They have sacrificed time, energy and money (in individually helping patients and each other), all while showing up and being the most talented, skilled, intelligent, kind and amazing oncology team ever. At a time when the world is exhausted and at times feels hopeless, they educate our patients, show love, strength and professionalism, and they show up every day while many are forced to isolate at home.

They are not just healers; they are heroes. I cannot think of a better team than the clinical team at Los Angeles Cancer Network to be recognized as extraordinary healers. They are truly amazing and make a true difference with their lives every single day.

Editor’s Note: This is an essay submitted by Lisa Hineman for the 2021 Extraordinary Healer Award. Click here to read more about CURE®’s Extraordinary Healer® Award for Oncology Nursing event on April 30, 2021.

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