Jacqueline Van Hulst of Woodland Hills has been struggling with various health issues. So much so, she has more than 140 visits to Kaiser Permanente every year.
But she says there is one Bright Spot in her medical journey: the Kaiser Permanente infusion center in Woodland Hills. She describes every member of the staff to be “genuine, loving, and caring.”
“Nobody is there collecting paychecks,” claims Van Hulst, who was diagnosed with chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy, a neurological, autoimmune disorder a few years ago. “Going in there immediately, I’m greeted with smiles and friendly faces. They know everyone by the name.”
Going to the infusion center is no walk in the park, says Van Hulst. Many patients who need treatments are struggling with cancer or serious, debilitating illnesses. But the CIDP patient says the staff’s kindness makes the ordeal easier.
“It’s not fun, of course, to go there,” Van Hulst says. “The medicine gives me a headache. But they make a point to say hello to me even though they’re not my assigned nurses. That really warms my heart.”
One nurse in particular has gone above and beyond for Van Hulst. The medical professional named Barbara pays attention to her patients’ overall health and mental wellbeing, according to Van Hulst.
“A year and a half ago. I had a weird sore in my ear, doing down to my ear canal. She’s the one who noticed it. I go to Kaiser so much. But none of the other people brought it up. Nobody. But she noticed it, and she said, ‘You need to have someone look at that.’”
So she did. Shortly after, Van Hulst was officially diagnosed with lupus.
Barbara’s attention to details and compassion also shined through when Van Hulst lost her beloved dog “Luke.”
“One day, Barbara asked me, ‘How are you doing?’ I told her my dog was ill. He was diagnosed with congestive heart failure at that point,” Van Hulst recalls. “I started crying. As I was talking about Luke, she also got tearful.”
Van Hulst gets emotional when she describes her gratitude to the nursing staff at the infusion center.
“Because of them, I can walk again. I can function. It also helps very much to be greeted so nicely every time.”
In response to Van Hulst’s heartfelt gratitude, the infusion center employees say they are just happy to do their jobs.
“We are humbled by her kindness and recognition of our commitment to meeting her health care needs,” responds Rosa Vazquez, the Infusion Center Department Administrator at Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills Medical Center. “This is part of our DNA. Our goal is to always go above and beyond the call of duty to meet our patients’ needs by providing them with high-quality and compassionate care.”