Ask Anne Bormann what makes her a good home care nurse, and she’ll tell you that it’s because she just cares about people.
“I’ve always wanted to care for people,” says the 45-year-old nurse for Horizon Home Care and Hospice. “I am always there to help. I just like helping people and trying to make a difference in someone’s life.”
Earlier this year, Bormann was credited with saving the life of a man through her powers of observation and persistence. While visiting a patient at home for complex wound care, she noticed that the patient’s husband was short of breath and not looking good.
When Bormann questioned his status, the man brushed it off as having “a little flu bug” and that he was tired from taking care of his sick wife, recalled Susan Hade, a clinical nurse manager for Horizon Home Care.
Bormann encouraged the man to call his doctor for an evaluation. When the man hesitated, Bormann remained persistent. Ultimately, the man called his doctor’s office and was instructed to call 911, and he was admitted with cardiogenic shock and acute renal failure.
The man later told Hade, “My doctor told me if she hadn’t pushed me to get medical care, I would have died.”
The man returned home after a week’s stay at the hospital. Bormann’s supervisor learned about the life-saving judgment call only after the man called to tell her about it.
“I am a nurse that believes that you put your hands on people,” Bormann says. “I listen to them. I can kind of tell by looking at people – you get a gut feeling when something is not right. I knew that he didn’t feel well.”
Bormann recently learned of a 14-year-old high school girl who was overburdened from taking care of her pregnant mother’s other four children, while also being responsible for her school work and doing the family laundry. Bormann found mounds of soiled laundry in the basement, which she put in plastic sacks and took back to her own home to wash. Bormann also contacted various school and church members to facilitate assistance to the overwhelmed family.
“As a home care nurse, you get to deal with people,” Bormann says. “Nurses working in hospitals don’t have as much time to hear their stories and get involved with their world.”
Hade adds that Bormann has demonstrated a generous and mentoring spirit with new nurses, who have exhibited growth and self-confidence thanks to the guidance they received from her.
“With the flourish of HMO, PPO, Medicaid and Medicare regulations, home care has become more challenging, with many psychological and acute medical needs to be met,” Hade said. “Anne continues to respond to these challenges with the highest degree of excellence.”