Tomorrow is December 1 and I am of the old school where one is accustomed to postponing thoughts of Christmas until after Thanksgiving. In my previous career of Nursing, I worked many Christmas's & while I always felt guilty for being away from home and hearth, I always felt useful too. Nursing offers a unique opportunity to invest in others in a way that few other jobs do.
The following story is kudos for a fellow nurse and a look at how she turned her own health crisis into an opportunity for many.
Faith Coleman, a nurse pratitioner, found herself well educated, in a well paying job that she loved when she was diagnosed with kidney cancer. Despite the fact that she had worked in the health care industry, she did not have personal health insurance. That fact became an eye opener for her after her diagnosis.
Every day as a nurse we are provided opportunity. Opportunity to educated, help, heal, make a difference. Faith took the opportunity of having kidney cancer, which she described as "one of the best things that ever happened to me" to make a difference for others.
While Faith, due to her own economic situation and home ownership was able to mortgage her home providing $35,000 needed for her cancer care it did not escape her notice that most uninsured people do not have this resource.
After, her treatment and recovery, she approached a local physician in Bunnell, Fl with 60 years experience in treating the indigent population. Together, they established the Flagler County Free Clinic opening its doors in February 2005. With a staff entirely composed of volunteers, in a building donated by Dr.s for available use on the weekends they see patients on the first and third weekends of each month providing help for the uninsured. Local imaging services provide ancillary back up with donated CAT Scans and radiology assistance. Funded by private contributions and supported by many community organizations like Rotary and private physician free service, they have provided hope and care to many.
Faith Coleman used her second chance well.
Patti and Gary Wiles