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Humans of Healthcare: Sue Sonka

10:12 PM · Sep 17, 2021

Sue Sonka has been a nurse at CHI Mercy Hospital for 39 years, currently on the surgical floor. “It is mentally and physically hard each day,” Sonka said. “It can be discouraging; Nurses like to fix things and many days the patients we are seeing are too ill to be fixed. We are sad when a patient’s family cannot be there to encourage them or to say goodbye. We realize we could be in their shoes. “In all of my years I never imagined I would be caring for patients on a surgical floor that are as sick as these patients are. I thought AIDS would be the biggest crisis I would see in my lifetime but, sadly, I was wrong. We are trying to do more with the same number of staff. “My coworkers, community support and my friends and family keep me encouraged. I love my family for cutting me slack because I have been working 2 extra days a week for the last 14 months. My coworkers and department leaders lend moral and physical support. Everyone is helping out everyone else as much as they can and you will never hear ‘that’s not in my job description.’ No one knows how much the community support means to us. We appreciate every smile, card and kind word so much. And all the food, snacks and food trucks are appreciated more than anyone knows. Most of all just a kind word.” *** Humans of Healthcare is a series of stories introducing people who work in the healthcare profession to the community at large, to see past "healthcare" as an institution and to see the humans at work inside.

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