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Recognizing Nurses – Koreana Chanterelle

Three of the five nurses selected as finalists in the hospice category in the Austin American-Statesman’s Recognizing Nurses competition are from Hospice Austin. The public may vote online for a finalist once a day through May 1, then the top three finalists will be honored at the Recognizing Nurses Gala scheduled for October. We are reprinting Koreana’s nomination here. We are proud of all of our nurses!

I am a social worker who has worked on the same team with Koreana Chanterelle and have observed her with numerous patients as well as her colleagues at Hospice Austin and at facilities throughout our community. This is not the first time I’ve submitted a nomination for Koreana, and I continue to do so because I believe, in a city with many highly qualified and dedicated nurse professionals, Koreana is exceptional. I work with many nurses, in the field and as the education coordinator at Hospice Austin, and I’ve observed many who are masters in their chosen profession. They have the skills, the practice wisdom and the dedication that place them at the top of their field. Koreana is part of this group, but is exceptional in other critically important ways.

She is a highly intuitive person and uses that superpower every day when serving our patients during the most difficult journey of their lives. Koreana joins her patients and their loved ones on this journey, sitting with them in their pain while also providing comfort and expert care. She is a teacher, tailoring her communications to the singular needs of every patient, walking into highly challenging situations to convey calm, reassurance, and deep compassion. This is no easy task given all of the day-to-day expectations of a nurse operating in the hospice sphere. Her clinical documentation is impeccable, and in her interactions with her colleagues Koreana is a consummate professional.

Koreana quietly and faithfully serves her patients without fanfare, but with a sense of commitment and profound responsibility. One of our patients with a history incarceration and trauma desperately wanted to remain in his apartment until his death. Koreana led the team to find creative ways to support this patient’s goal including: a medication box with alarm reminders  and hiring a professional organizer with expertise in hoarding to help the patient clear his apartment under threat of eviction. She has attended celebrations and important life events of her patients and families, and can always be counted on to think outside of the box when barriers to patient care arise.

Koreana’s most powerful attribute is the way she builds, though steadfast communication and commitment to her patients’ best interest, deep and lasting relationships with the people she serves. I am certain I don’t know all of the ways Koreana has gone above and beyond with her patients because she does it without drawing any attention to herself. She is completely patient-focused, always looking for ways to improve her practice and build her professional skills. She is a model for other Hospice Austin staff and embodies every one of our standards of behavior: respect, innovation and learning, gratitude, honesty and teamwork. I have learned so much from Koreana. I feel honored to work alongside her. Koreana is so deserving of this honor. I hope you think so too.

If you would like to vote for a finalist in the Recognizing Nurses competition, please click here.

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