May I have this dance?

Last Modified: 3/08/2021

Patient Dance

In late February, prior to COVID-19, Gidget O’Brien shared a Facebook update about the great care her mother, Donna Githens, received while hospitalized in Parkview’s 6 Medical unit at Parkview Regional Medical Center.

As a patient, Donna was suffering from several serious health issues and was also quite disoriented.

“Mom didn’t know who she was, and she didn’t know me,” Gidget said. “She had trouble communicating and wasn’t herself. It was very scary.”

During her six-day stay, Donna felt all of Parkview’s staff were amazing, but nurses Anne Trittipo and Alex Stefan made her feel as if she were their only patient and top priority.

Donna and Gidget remember Anne’s attentiveness and caring personality. “She didn’t just come in and do her job,” Gidget said. “She truly cared.”

Donna formed an even closer, more personal bond with Alex. They shared fun stories, life experiences and some deep conversations. Gidget saw her mother welcome Alex into her heart – and he embraced that as well.

“When they talked, you could just see the personal connection between them,” Gidget said. “He always looked her straight in the eye…. I could tell he loved his job and patients.” 

One day when Alex was in Donna’s room, she thought she heard music and shared how music reminded her of dancing with her late husband. To that, Alex had an immediate reply: “When you get released, I’ll dance with you.”

On her discharge day, Alex made good on his promise. The two enjoyed the box step – one of Donna’s favorites – and at one point, he even gave her a little spin!

That moment was emotional for Gidget, and she cried as she watched. “Mom had come so far in those six days – from not knowing me to back to herself. For her to be out of bed and dancing with him was priceless.”

After they left Parkview, Gidget wanted everyone to know about the extraordinary care they’d received, and she posted a few photos of the moment and an update on Facebook.

Part of her caption read: “Parkview Regional 6th floor was 5-star in our eyes. She had THE best people caring for her from the doctors…to the woman who cleaned her room.”

Co-workers like Alex and Anne are proof that our dedicated team members are invested in the patients we serve, and true examples of world class teamwork.

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