Providing care and compassion: The nurses of University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital

They are one of the most important elements of the University of Minnesota Masonic Children's Hospital -- the over 1,000 nurses who provide families with invaluable care and compassion.

They are why one of the reasons why little Cecilia from Rosemount wasn’t worried about her next round of chemotherapy, she was too busy laughing and having fun running back and forth between her mom and Ashley Swansson, a nurse manager who has worked at the University of Minnesota Masonic Children's hospital for 13 years.

“When I look out at our nursing staff we have, they see the situation in front of them though the eyes of the family and they are not self-oriented, they are patient and family oriented," Swansson said.

Paula Klassen, who’s 14-year-old son Nick needed intense one-of-a-kind care to fix his pancreas agreed when asked recently about the care nurses at Masonic provide.      

"They're just so caring, so wonderful. They go above and beyond for the patient, but always asking family members, ‘Do you need anything? How can we help you?' [They] just totally make you feel welcome," Klassen said.

Signs of nurse-patient connection are on full display around Masonic.

For Nick, who's almost done with more than a month of treatment and care--the smiling faces are what he'll never forget.       

"They're very nice and caring. Rachel, Meagan, oh...Jodi, she was in the ICU,” Nick said remembering a few of the many nurses who made an impression on him during his treatment.

The Meagan he mentioned is Meagan Elliott, a pediatric nurse who has worked Masonic for more than eight years.

“We just talked with Nick and when you hear he mentioned you as one of his favorites? "It's a special feeling--joyous. These kids are so amazing and all the work they do and to hear that my care has influenced them…is very fulfilling," Elliot said.

If you would like to help, visit our 12 Days of Giving crowdfunding page on the University of Minnesota’s website. You can see how much we’ve raised and know your generosity is going to help save and change lives. 

FOX 9’s 12 Days of Giving started on Sunday, Dec. 1 and runs through Thursday, Dec. 12.