Lauren DePietro, Wellstar Kennestone Hospital


“She was special to me. She was so kind and you want to give back to the people who give it to you,” DePietro said.

Baxter said DePietro continued to spend time with the patient, chatting and getting to know her, hoping to find something to lift her spirits.

“As Christmas approached, Lauren was particularly worried about her mental well-being and the restriction of visitors. Through their conversation, she learned how much the patient enjoyed the Christmas lights and sounds and came up with a plan to help brighten the patient’s days,” Baxter wrote.

DePietro bought faux plants to brighten up the room and put together a gift basket with a blanket, coloring books and puns. Additionally, she bought colorful Christmas lights and decorated the patient’s room while she was away for a procedure.

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“When the patient returned, she looked around the room and her face lit up with joy and excitement,” Baxter wrote. “She asked for her phone to FaceTime her family and moved the phone around the room so they could share the moment with her.

The family expressed their gratitude for these small acts of love after the patient’s death with them at her bedside.

“People need to feel like people in the hospital,” DePietro said. “Often people lose their self-esteem and dignity in the hospital. Now that I’ve been a nurse for a few years, it makes sense to think about what people need holistically as a separate human being. whole.

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Learn more about the nurses honored at this year’s ceremony:

Shannan Browning, Piedmont Healthcare

Sarah Harper, Wellstar Cobb Hospital

Rose Horton, Emory Healthcare

Damar Lewis, Northside Hospital Duluth

Gina Papa, Clarkston Community Health Center

Deepa Patel, Wellstar Shared Services

Andrew Perea, Permanent Kaiser

Cherish Ramirez, Piedmont Healthcare

Julie Singleton, Northeast Georgia Health System

Denise Ray, Piedmont Healthcare: Nurse Leader Award


Age: 25

Actual job: Wellstar Kennestone Hospital Coronary Care Unit

Years of experience:

Nursing education: RN, BScN, Kennesaw State University

Family info: Betrothed to get married. I always wanted to be a nurse and paved the way to becoming a registered nurse at a young age. She took courses in high school to prepare for a career as a nurse or patient care technician. “I always wanted to have a job that I loved and was making a difference by helping people,” DePietro said.


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