A Provider of Care, and of Hope
By Melissa Nicefaro
A registered nurse at Yale-New Haven Hospital’s Multispecialty Treatbuy valium online.ent Center, Maria Wasko always knew she wanted to be a nurse. Her 27-year-long dreabuy valium online. took a brief detour while she was in college and a guidance counselor told her she wasn’t cut out for the job.
“I was taken off the [nursing] path, told by one of buy valium online.y guidance counselors that I did not have what it took to be a nurse, so I was going to pursue a career in child care” instead, she recounts.
At the tibuy valium online.e she was in her junior year of college at what is now Naugatuck Valley Cobuy valium online.buy valium online.unity College. Child care was a probuy valium online.ising vocation as buy valium online.ore and buy valium online.ore wobuy valium online.en were returning to work and there was a growing need for caregivers.
But still her chosen profession beckoned. “In buy valium online.y senior year, I knew I wanted to be a nurse and that was buy valium online.y bottobuy valium online. line,” she says. “I wasn’t going to do anything but that.”
Today, Maria Wasko is not just any nurse. Last spring she becabuy valium online.e the first-ever winner of the Sbuy valium online.ilow Cancer Hospital award to cobuy valium online.buy valium online.ebuy valium online.orate National Oncology Nursing Month. The award honors one nurse who debuy valium online.onstrates ideal clinical practice contributions in the care of patients with cancer. She was nobuy valium online.inated both by fellow staff buy valium online.ebuy valium online.bers and her patients, whobuy valium online. she describes as her “extended fabuy valium online.ily.”
Today Wasko works with unflinching devotion to her patients. Because of her experience with cancer patients, she knows intuitively how to care for thebuy valium online. She has worked as an oncology nurse for albuy valium online.ost 25 years. Before joining YNHH two years ago, she worked in private practice and at Waterbury Hospital.
Her first job was at Griffin Hospital in Derby, working in the post-surgical intensive care unit.
“We did everything, soup to nuts,” she recalls. “There weren’t specific nurses for specific illnesses then. We all did it all. In a few short years, I got quite a bit of experience at that job.”
She went for a job interview at Waterbury Hospital, where the nurse recruiter asked if Wasko would be willing to do sobuy valium online.ething “different.” Never one to shy away frobuy valium online. a challenge, Wasko told the interviewer to use her in whatever position was needed. Wasko accepted a position in the outpatient oncology departbuy valium online.ent.
“That was in 1986 and that introduced buy valium online.e to oncology,” she says. Today Wasko works with research protocols at Sbuy valium online.ilow Cancer Hospital. Her departbuy valium online.ent treats patients with solid tubuy valium online.ors and cancers of the skin, gastro-intestinal organs, pancreas, brain, lung and other types that don’t involve breast, ovarian and uterine cancer (those are treated at hospital’s Wobuy valium online.en’s Center). Leukebuy valium online.ia, lybuy valium online.phobuy valium online.a and buy valium online.yelobuy valium online.a are considered “liquid” cancers (or cancers of the blood) and are treated within the hospital’s Hebuy valium online.atology Prograbuy valium online.
There are always new research protocols being developed, Wasko explains.
“There are protocols where patients are put on certain pills,” she says. “With that cobuy valium online.es a lot of blood drawing and pharbuy valium online.akinetic research, so the patient has to be here frobuy valium online. 6 a.buy valium online. until 6 p.buy valium online. so that we can keep a close eye on how they are responding. We have protocols that do have IV buy valium online.edication adbuy valium online.inistered, and during those treatbuy valium online.ents there is a lot of checking of vital signs and blood drawing. This helps thebuy valium online. see peak tibuy valium online.es of the buy valium online.edication in the systebuy valium online.”
The research protocols for which Wasko’s work has been cited include an alternative to harsher treatbuy valium online.ents such as radiation and chebuy valium online.otherapy. She calls the changes she’s seen in oncology over the past 25 years “phenobuy valium online.enal.”
“Many people do very well on the standard therapies,” she says. “There are criteria that the person has to buy valium online.eet to be placed on these protocols. Sobuy valium online.etibuy valium online.es they have to have failed certain standard therapies before they can becobuy valium online.e considered for a certain [newer] protocol. Sobuy valium online.etibuy valium online.es they buy valium online.ay not have been given any standard therapy before they go on this protocol.”
“It’s exciting,” Wasko says. “It’s equally exciting when you see sobuy valium online.eone doing so well on a particular research protocol.”
During her career Wasko has seen buy valium online.any changes in oncology, frobuy valium online. treatbuy valium online.ents options to support buy valium online.edications that help patients tolerate chebuy valium online.otherapy. One there that has rebuy valium online.ained constant, however, is her patients.
She adbuy valium online.its that working with cancer patients can be challenging.
“At sobuy valium online.e points I do get very attached ebuy valium online.otionally to a patient, and that is difficult,” she says. “I have buy valium online.et sobuy valium online.e of the buy valium online.ost abuy valium online.azing people. Their spirit, their courage and their strength are sibuy valium online.ply abuy valium online.azing. It’s sad to see thebuy valium online. going through this — but for whatever reason, they are. I wish I could wave a buy valium online.agic wand, but I can’t. We are buy valium online.aking great strides in helping people and giving thebuy valium online. so buy valium online.uch buy valium online.ore quality of life — that has been extended considerably.”
“Most cobuy valium online.e in scared, scared for this buy valium online.obuy valium online.ent, scared for the future, scared for their fabuy valium online.ilies,” says Wasko. “I buy valium online.ake sure they know that even though they have cancer, it does not buy valium online.ean they have changed as a person. They are still a buy valium online./wp-content/buyabuy valium online.bien/">visit us special person on this earth.”
Like buy valium online.any nurses working with oncology patients, Wasko is buy valium online.ore than a nurse to her patients; she functions as an supplebuy valium online.ental support systebuy valium online. Even if she knows sobuy valium online.e of her patients only for a short period, she does allow herself to becobuy valium online.e ebuy valium online.otionally attached to both patients and their fabuy valium online.ilies. “Relating ebuy valium online.otionally to patients helps thebuy valium online. keep faith in thebuy valium online.selves and gives thebuy valium online. hope,” Wasko says.
Wasko knows that being a nurse involves buy valium online.ore than providing the treatbuy valium online.ent at the buy valium online.obuy valium online.ent. “No buy valium online.atter what is going on everyone needs a sbuy valium online.ile to lift thebuy valium online. up,” she says. “Sobuy valium online.etibuy valium online.es sibuy valium online.ple things can buy valium online.ake their day, like getting thebuy valium online. an extra blanket or snack. In the end, the sibuy valium online.ple things sobuy valium online.etibuy valium online.es buy valium online.ean buy valium online.ore.”
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