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Featured parish nurse.

This month we feature an article written by Helene King about her parish nurse, Christine Cosnowski, RN, MSA, FCN, a member of the Detroit Parish Nurse Network of Southeast Michigan.

My parish nurse is indispensable! She is indispensable to the community, the church, and the individual.

For the community, my parish nurse helps arrange blood drives, helps churches procure AEDs (automatic external defibrillators), teaches CPR, drives the elderly to doctor appointments and beyond. She also belongs to many organizations which enable her to bring many different people together to meet their individual and unique needs. Such needs might be grief counseling or in my case, finding a recipient for our no longer needed wheelchair ramp.

For the church, my parish nurse has monthly blood pressure clinics, arranges for flu shots, writes a timely and very informative article for the newsletter, teaches CPR and babysitting classes, teaches the youth about different health issues, presents to the Stephens Ministry training and so much more.

For the individual, my parish nurse makes home visits to the ill, recovering, and the shut-ins. She also makes hospital visits and many follow-up phone calls. My parish nurse provides support for mind, body and spirit, finds medical equipment for loaning out, helps decipher medical and pharmaceutical terms and issues, and answers questions. Where does she find the time?

And then there are those special individual moments--I certainly have shared many with my parish nurse. I would like to share one with you. When my parish nurse came to our church, it was two months before my husband, Terry King, died from kidney cancer. I had been introduced to her but did not avail myself of her services. She was new and I tend to do things on my own.

Then came the night when my husband was taken to Henry Ford Hospital, Downtown Detroit. I was there alone. The staff approached me and offered Hospice care for him. Extenuating circumstances made it a very difficult decision. At that moment, I looked up and saw a familiar face. I didn't immediately identify her, but recognized the face. As she approached, I realized it was my parish nurse. At 9:00 p.m., she had driven to Downtown Detroit to be with me--with me--so that I would not be alone in making that decision. Her support and comfort were a much appreciated blessing. She was indeed an angel sent by God to walk that path with me.

Taken from "My Parish Nurse," Winter 2006/2007 issue, Bigger than Ourselves, newsletter of the Detroit Parish Nurse Network (DPNN).

Kathleen V. Ruth, BSN, RN, President of the DPNN, is the editor. She can be reached by e-mail at or by phone at 313-510-2614.
COPYRIGHT 2007 International Parish Nurse Resource Center
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2007 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
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Title Annotation:Christine Cosnowski
Author:Ruth, Kathleen V.
Publication:Parish Nurse Perspectives
Geographic Code:1U3MI
Date:Jun 22, 2007
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Next Article:Resources of interest to parish nurses.

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