Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Cookies, Candy and Cocoa, Oh My: Support from the Alvin & Lois Lapidus Cancer Institute

by Jill Adler, M.S., Coordinator, Patient Information Services, and Bunny Kohn, R.N., Alvin & Lois Lapidus Cancer Institute

Puffs of hot chocolate, glittery dancing snowflakes and bags of holiday treats served as the warm welcome mat for patients being treated at the Alvin & Lois Lapidus Cancer Institute at Sinai Hospital in Baltimore last week.

This special holiday surprise was due to the generous spirit of the Outpatient Infusion Services (OPIS) nursing staff. Instead of the nurses eating dinner out as a group to celebrate the season they pooled their money and hosted a party in-house for the patients.

CostCo was the shopping kingdom of choice for one of the nurses. She could be seen moving her way down the aisles with baskets of sugary holiday cookies, bags of delicious candy and an array of chocolates.

Several nurses stayed late one night to "bag" enough goodies in the Snowman-themed bags to get the week started. The celebration started on Monday morning, running throughout the week. Festive decorations adorned the nurses stations and the reception area was newly designed to have patients and their guests enjoy a cup of hot apple cider, tea or cocoa. The whole nursing area smelled great and brought lots of smiles and full feelings of happiness for everyone.

The baggies had festive decorated cookies, chocolates and other candy for patients take to their seats during treatment or to just take home with them and enjoy later. A holiday card was given to each patient as they registered as well as a box of reusable shopping bags that had been donated. Just to add even more joy to the mix, poinsettia plants, silver garland and snowmen figurines were placed on the tables to be enjoyed. An adorable gingerbread house created by the pre-school aged grandsons of one of our nurses brought smiles from everyone as it was placed at the sitting area for all o enjoy.

The staff was also asked to donate hats, gloves and scarves for our patients which were given out by our Oncology Social Worker and Patient Care Navigator.

The time and love given to this event was just one more way of showing how the staff cares with so much compassion and feeling to the special patients and their families that are being treated at the Alvin and Lois Lapidus Cancer Institute.

To learn more about the Alvin and Lois Lapidus Cancer Institute, call 410-601-WELL (9355).

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