In honor of National Nurse's Week we continue to highlight nurses and mentors who have truly inspired us along the way. Today's highlight comes from care management author, Barbara Katz, RN, MSN,
"As I look back on a long nursing career, I remember a long ago teacher who continues to inspire me to this day. That teacher was my undergraduate maternal/child health nursing instructor at the University of Bridgeport, Miss Alfeda Burblis.
Miss Burblis was a nurse midwife, which was an uncommon specialty in those days, and one that generated a certain amount of awe and respect in her students. She was also an extremely tough taskmaster. While we students respected her knowledge, we were afraid of her.
My perception of Miss Burblis changed dramatically one day during our labor and delivery rotation. The hospital was short staffed and Ms. Burblis and a small group of us were helping prepare a teenage mother for the delivery of her first baby - with an emergency C-section. The young girl was alone and terrified. Miss Burblis stepped in, quickly and efficiently completed the prep work and then reached over and squeezed the girl’s hands, saying “I am going to pray for you Annie. You and your baby are going to come through this safely.” I never forgot the combination of competence and compassion that she displayed in that moment.
Many years later, I happened to meet Miss Burblis as she was walking out of a hospital doorway. I stopped her, recounted the story from my student days and told her how she had inspired me. She was very touched to hear how she had made a difference in my life. I never saw her again, but I was very grateful that I had a chance to tell her how much her example had meant to me." - Barbara Katz, RN, MSN, author of the recently published Connecting Care for Patients: Interdisciplinary Care Transitions and Collaboration.