Page 35 - Alaska Parent Winter 2020 Digital
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Special Delivery:
Secrets of Saying Thanks to Your Birth Attendants
 Having your baby is such a life- changing and
wonderful occasion that you may be thinking
of getting your birth attendants (midwife, nurses, etc.) a gift of thanks. Several nurses I spoke with all agree: Gifts are not necessary, but they are appreciated.
“It is always unexpected to get a gift from a patient or family,” says Kailyn Merrill, RN. “It is truly a heartfelt moment of reflection knowing I impacted their lives.”
Most hospitals have policies that staff cannot accept money or personal gifts other than “small tokens of appreciation
of nominal value,” such as candy or flowers, so
the good news is that showing your appreciation should never cost a lot of money and doesn’t really need to cost anything at all. The staff does love
it when you appreciate the individualized care they give to help you get
“It is truly a heartfelt moment of reflection knowing I impacted their lives.”
through the often long and difficult time.
GET GIFTS THAT CAN BE SHARED. Know that nurses will most likely share your gift. They work as a team and what one gets, one shares
with the rest of the team. You might notice this teamwork during your stay: If you call for your nurse, another nurse may answer and get what you need. Support staff, such as unit clerks, work hard behind the scenes and don’t usually get the thanks they deserve, so nurses like to share gifts with them as well, so think about gifts that can
be easily shared.
Even before the COVID pandemic, food safety was an important consideration. Avoid homemade food gifts, as they can be deemed questionable. Gifts of food should be from a commercial source and hopefully dated. (Food may be sitting in the break room for some time, and with shifts changing, it is important to know how old the
gift is.) Anything that is expected to be shared should be individually wrapped whenever
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   Terriann Shell, BS, RN, IBCLC, CHES, FILCA, serves new families as a Lactation Consultant at a local Alaska hospital and for a volunteer mother-to-mother discussion group. As a Child Passenger Safety Technician, she volunteers to keep children safe on our roads. She is the mother of 9 children and grandmother to 12 grandchildren that love to go with her while she kayaks and hikes in Alaska. winter 2020/21 alaska parent 35

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