Alexis Pleman, B.S.N., RN

Alexis Pleman, B.S.N., RN
Tower 4 ENT/Internal Medicine


Alexis was assigned to receive an ICU patient at the end of her shift. Unfortunately, the patient was transitioning to comfort care measures. Prior to arriving to the unit, Alexis reviewed the chart to prepare for her patient and also see what she could learn about the patient. Once the patient and his family arrived, Alexis only had an hour left in her shift. She attuned to her patient and his family and wondered about the husband, father, son, and friend to many. She learned that her patient immigrated from overseas and met his wife in church. She also found out it was their wedding anniversary. Through her process of learning more about this patient, she found out about his love for classical music.

Alexis left that shift a little late because she wanted to make sure that the wife and his kids were comfortable. She made sure a comfort basket was ordered for the family and even set up a machine from the CARE cart that plays relaxing sounds. She encouraged the family to keep the door to the room shut so they could have privacy and placed magnetic butterflies at the doorway to his room. Our unit utilizes the magnetic butterflies to indicate to other staff members that the patient in the room is on comfort care. When Alexis came back the next day, she made it a priority to make sure everyone (the patient’s wife, children, other family and friends) was attended to. As the shift moved along, it appeared the patient would pass soon. Alexis found a balance between being present with the family and giving them time alone. Alexis was called into the room and was notified that it appeared the patient took his last breath. After her assessment, Alexis contacted the M.D. as well as the inpatient hospice nurse. When the time of death was made, Alexis ensured to the family that she would support them in any way that she could.

After giving the family some time to grieve alone, the family requested to be present as the patient was cleaned. Alexis asked for additional help from her colleague and got the necessary supplies. Alexis brought everything needed but she also brought in her phone. Prior to going in, she picked a playlist with classical music. As she shaved the beard, washed the face and body, and cleaned the wounds, the music in the background had a calming effect for all in the room.

Once she was finished bathing the patient, Alexis informed the family that it was time for the patient to transition off the unit. Again, she provided time for the family to be alone. When Alexis returned, all the members of the family took the cue and left the room. However, one of the patient’s sons wasn’t ready to. Alexis didn’t rush him to leave and the patient’s wife and daughter probably knew he needed more support to leave the bedside. Alexis’s silent presence at the doorway conveyed an understanding of the loss of the family. Soon enough, the patient’s daughter and son left the room not before expressing their gratitude. However, the wife was now at the bedside and it was quiet. The curtain was closed enough that the view of what was taking place was obstructed. Alexis made the choice to not intervene or “check-up” on them. All of a sudden, a quiet soothing singing voice emerged. The patient’s wife began to sing a song to her love. Once again, Alexis took the cue and bared witness to the family who lost their loved one.

Alexis ensured the family would have a sacred time to be with their loved one. As the family left the unit, they expressed their sincere gratitude for the care she provided. Unbeknownst to them, as she was preparing the patient for transport, she still talked to the patient, touched his body gently, and wished him well.

Alexis is an exceptional nurse. She exemplifies all the traits worthy of a DAISY Award on every day that she works.