At LifeCenter Northwest (LCNW), collaborating with local hospitals, medical centers and medical professionals is an essential part of fulfilling our mission of working together to save lives through organ and tissue donation. These partnerships literally make donation possible. We established the LifeCenter Northwest LifeSaver Award, presented monthly, to honor those who demonstrate a commitment to improving donation outcomes and/or culture through their actions, time and energy. We are proud to announce our first LifeSaver Award winner of the year, Diane King BSRN, of Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia, Washington.
Organ Donation is a rare and remarkable process. It requires a lot of assistance from a lot of people. The hospital care team plays an integral role in moving donation forward. During a recent organ donation at Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia, Diane’s hard work and dedication was discernible, and the LCNW staff involved concurred that she went above and beyond in her efforts to make donation happen.
From the beginning, Diane offered her assistance to the LCNW staff whilst offering continued to care and support for the family. After the family had received the grave prognosis, Amy Wilcox, LCNW Donor Family Advocate, spoke with the neurologist about having the donation conversation with the family but was asked to wait at least a few hours. Knowing the extensive time and coordination necessary for donation to be possible, Diane stepped in. She let the doctor know that she felt waiting would cause the family more distress and could compromise the chance for donation. Diane shared that family was in the waiting room together and offered to take Amy and Megan Wehner, Organ Recovery Coordinator, in to introduce them.
The conversation went well, but timing was an issue for the family. Though they knew the timeline was a stretch, LCNW promised do everything they could to accommodate their needs and still make donation happen.
Diane jumped in with both feet doing everything necessary to assist LCNW and the family. She was able to put in all the orders the LCNW clinical team needed and also contacted others to help. Diane remained invested in this sweet family and continued to give them extra time and attention as more loved ones arrived. She helped with memory making activities and was a comfort to this donor’s spouse and parents.
Throughout the day, Diane remained calm and collected. She asked a lot of questions to ensure there was clarity regarding the withdrawal of life support. There was a large number of people in the room and Diane graciously welcomed everyone to come close to the bed. Megan and Amy were close by the entire time, and the withdrawal was very peaceful.
“Diane felt compelled to see things through and even went to the OR to make sure everything went well. She was pleasant and helpful and never complained. Just amazing!!” said Tonya Azar, LCNW Hospital Development Program Manager
We’d like to thank all members of the Providence St Peter team who were present that day. This rapid DCD was a rushed case which lasted just 5 hours from the time of on-site in the morning to OR time. The hard work of the entire hospital team, coupled with Diane’s exemplary dedication to serving this family and making donation possible was unwavering.