For the last 16 years, Bayhealth has honored staff from both Bayhealth Milford Memorial and Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus for going above and beyond in not only teaching patients how to better care for themselves, but educating team members on how to improve the care they provide to the community. The 2017 Healthcare Educators of the Year Awards honorees are examples of Bayhealth staff driven to help patients inside and outside a Bayhealth facility. The 2017 honorees are Bariatric Program Coordinator Patty Deer, BSN, RN, CNOR, CBN, for Bayhealth Milford Memorial and Respiratory Navigator Crystal Hiser, RRT, BS, for Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus.
In her role as Bariatric program coordinator, Deer facilitates seminars for patients interested in weight loss surgery and leads support groups. She can be seen at community events throughout the year providing information to prospective patients. Along with helping patients during their weight loss journey, Deer also maintains relationships post-surgery and is known to send inspirational emails to keep people on track and engaged in their health.
To Deer, education is important in healthcare because of the sheer vastness of information available and how quickly healthcare advances. Patients need valid, reliable sources of information they can trust, and Bayhealth has a multitude of professionals available as resources to patients. “I’m fortunate I get the opportunity to help others learn about ways to promote their health and to hopefully enjoy a longer, fuller life,” Deer said.
Similar to how Deer educates surgical weight loss patients, Hiser teaches patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and other lung diseases how to improve their health. Not only does she work with patients within Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus, but she hosts the Better Breathers Club support group and does educational talks.
Hiser’s passion for lung health began when she was in college and her brother was in a car accident. She had no idea what a respiratory therapist was, but thought they were the most important people on the care team because their job was to breathe for patients when patients couldn’t breathe for themselves. “I knew from that moment on this was what I wanted to do, and I’m grateful a career I’m passionate about came out of something so tragic,” Hiser said.
Bayhealth offers a variety of classes and events to educate patients on the importance of their visit. Visit Bayhealth.org/Community-Health-and-Wellness for more information.
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