• 39°

Local nurse gives Novant patients a smile with badge buddy

By Shavonne Potts

shavonne.potts@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — When a nurse, doctor, or other hospital personnel smiles these days it’s hard to tell from behind the masks that they wear throughout their response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Sometimes patients just want to see a smile from medical staff indicated Novant Health Rowan Medical Center Registered Nurse Katie Lyerly. Lyerly, who typically works in the orthopedic unit, created a “badge buddy” for a few co-workers that included a message to patients and a picture.

“It was for our patients but also for our co-workers because we also haven’t seen each other smile in a while because we wear our masks around each other,” Lyerly said.

She said a smile behind the mask is not quite the same.

Lyerly typically works in the orthopedic unit, but that unit is now operating as a medical-surgical (med-surg) unit that takes care of patients with a wide variety of medical issues or patients who are recovering from surgery.

She’s made between 15 to 20 badge buddies for a few of her immediate co-workers and her siblings, who work in other parts of the hospital. Lyerly is one of a set of triplets and has made the badge buddies for some of her siblings’ co-workers as well.

The idea, in part, came after Lyerly recalled what a patient said about not being able to fully see the staff.

In the beginning, the patient had been used to seeing the faces of the staff and then everyone he subsequently was in contact with wore a mask.

“He just told me, ‘I just miss seeing everybody’s smiles,’ ” Lyerly said.

The badge buddy has been used by the hospital to explain previous campaigns to patients. But it had never been used to display a picture of an employee and include a personalized message to patients.

Lyerly said she saw the idea via a nursing Facebook group page where a Wilmington nurse had created a similar badge buddy and her thoughts went back to her patient who said he missed seeing hospital staff faces.

The response from staff and patients has been positive, Lyerly said, with one patient noting that, “it’s nice to see what you look like.”

She said in that moment she “didn’t realize what the rest of your face can say about you.”

Lyerly said she’ll continue to make more because everyday people still ask her to make them one.

Lyerly said if others ask her to make them one, she’ll continue to make more.

Comments

News

Duke Energy, NC officials announce coal ash expense deal

Local

Police, firefighters parade for hospital staff

Coronavirus

Demand continues to exceed supply as county shifts to vaccine appointments

Local

‘Uncommonly good man:’ Local appraiser Scott Robinson dies after fall at home

News

Rowan Planning Board settles on screening requirements for solar farms

News

Transition to mass vaccination sites irks NC health systems

Crime

Mississippi sheriff: One dead after Salisbury children left in woods; father sought

Crime

Man faces misdemeanor child abuse charges

Crime

Two charged with breaking into building on South Main Street, drug possession

Coronavirus

Nina Oliver: County will move to appointments for vaccines

News

Political Notebook: North Carolina lawmakers say they look forward to working with Biden

Ask Us

Ask Us: How will county administer second doses of vaccine?

News

White House begins talks with lawmakers on COVID-19 relief

Coronavirus

81 new COVID-19 cases reported Sunday as county hints at appointment model

Crime

Blotter: Salisbury man charged with shooting at police, robbing Goodwill in December

News

During early mornings and weekends, F&M Bank handled hundreds of Paycheck Protection Program loans

Coronavirus

Salisbury VA uses appointment model for COVID-19 vaccinations, tops 3,300 doses

Local

Response remains mixed as city continues gathering public input on downtown street plan

Education

Community offers support for, memories of Knox teacher Beaver

Business

Loan program for women, minority entrepreneurs expected to launch in spring

Entertainment

Symphony offers virtual performance of ‘Resounding Romance’ Feb. 12-14

Local

Pops at the Post scheduled for Sept. 11

Education

Kannapolis City Schools searching for an architect to explore A.L. Brown expansion

Lifestyle

Dan Mikkelson proves he’s tough as nails, almost lands gig as contestant on reality show