Week two kicked off to a great start. Clayton State dental hygiene students and new University of Georgia pharmacy students joined our group to assist with our patient exams.
Last week, a BSN student had a man whose feet were so badly irritated that he was unable to walk. His feet were exposed and raw and the slightest touch caused him to have extreme pain. At the foot care station, she gently washed and treated his feet. Another BSN student braced this man and helped him walk to a chair where other students providing screening exams could walk to accommodate him. A community health assessment was completed the next day and it was discovered that his irritation was because he had holes in his shoes. Pesticides and water seeped into his shoes while he worked in the fields, resulting in prolonged moisture and irritation. The NP ordered the patient oral steroids and topical ointment.
Last night, this same man returned. He was so joyous because he was able to walk. The same BSN student who provided foot care one week prior sat him down at the foot care station. The transformation on his feet was incredible. His open sores had healed and the infection had gone. He was given new shoes without holes. He was so grateful for the care that we provided and continuously thanked us. As the man left, he and the BSN student said goodbye with tears in their eyes.
This experience reminded us all what nursing is truly about. It is about taking the skills that we learn and using them in a selfless manner. In the words of Maya Angelou, “As a nurse, we have the opportunity to heal the heart, mind, soul, and body of our patients, their families and ourselves. They may forget your name, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”