PICU nurse strives for positivity and comfort in patient care

Kayla Piplani

Recognizing the emotional toll that often accompanies a hospital visit, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) nurse Kayla Piplani, BSN, RN, strives to offer a little reprieve for her patients and their families.

“I come in every day, leave the world at the door and try to do my best to make the PICU Disneyland,” says Piplani. “I know that it’s an incredibly difficult situation for patients when they’re here, so I want to make it the best environment I can.”

Building rapport

For Piplani, building rapport with her patient’s families is one of the most effective ways to ensure patients have a positive experience.

“Parents are always going to make sure their child feels the least amount of discomfort possible,” she says. “It’s easier for me to get close to the patient and earn their trust if their parent is trustful of me first.”

Working in the PICU, Piplani cares for patients from their first day to 18 years old. She makes their comfort a top priority.

“No one expects to be in the PICU, so trying to make their stay as comfortable as possible is important. I don’t have any children, but while I’m at work, I tell parents, ‘Your child is my child.’ That helps take the edge off the stress of the situation.

— Kayla Piplani, BSN, RN

Fully immersed

Piplani also emphasizes that her role is made easier by her colleagues. Together, they share the weight of their tasks.

“It’s the most collaborative environment I’ve ever been a part of,” says Piplani. “That’s not hyperbole, it’s just part of our culture.”

As difficult and challenging as 2020 has been thus far, Piplani and her colleagues recognize that patients’ needs never cease.

“I stay motivated by knowing that those kids still need my help,” she says. “I try to take my days off seriously and do things I enjoy and find interesting, so that when I come back, I’m fully immersed in my work. If I can do my best by my patients, then I’ve really done my job.”