Daisy winner is “a true angel”

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02/12/2024

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Patient’s mom nominated Maci Frantz for the nursing award because of the compassionate care she provided her daughter.

By Maureen Gilmer, Riley Children’s Health senior writer, mgilmer1@iuhealth.org

Maci Frantz was still on orientation as a new nurse at Riley Hospital for Children when she got a pretty cool surprise.

The 8 East nurse, who works the overnight shift, earned her first Daisy nomination barely a month into her first nursing job.

She was celebrated last week by her team and nursing leadership and received flowers, a Daisy pin and the healing hands sculpture presented to those who embody the spirit of excellent nursing, displaying both clinical skills and compassionate care.

It was back in November that a patient’s mom nominated Frantz for the care she provided the woman’s daughter, who was suffering severe pain from a kidney infection and could not keep oral medications down.

“Maci took control by advocating for my child,” the mom said.

Even if that meant bothering doctors overnight to get them to change the oral medication orders and allow the patient to receive the medicine through an IV.

That takes tenacity and courage, especially for a new nurse, but Frantz sees it as her job.

“I’m not afraid to speak out because it’s in the patient’s best interest,” she said. “You are the advocate for the patient and the parents. You are that person who has to stand up for them.”

Frantz, who grew up in Portland, Indiana, has known she wanted to be a Riley nurse since she was about 10 or 11, she said. That’s when her nephew was treated for a brain tumor at Riley.

“I spent a lot of time at Riley with him,” she said. “Seeing how the nurses treated him, I just wanted to be that person when I got older.”

She keeps that in mind as she cares for her patients and their parents.

“I knew when I was young that if I could be that person for kids, that’s just like a dream. I always want to make people feel better.”

And that’s just what she did for her young patient last fall, the child’s mom said in her nomination letter.

“When Macy walked into the room, she brought a light of hope. I could not have asked for better care. She promotes everything Riley Hospital stands for and more.

“I want to personally thank you, Maci, from the bottom of my heart for everything you did for my child and what you will continue to do for other children. … A true angel.”

Frantz, who enjoys traveling, tennis and hanging out with friends, said putting others before yourself is key to being a good nurse.

“You can’t be selfish in this career. Sometimes it feels like you’re going and going and maybe people aren’t always the nicest, but moments like this when you get recognized gives you a good feeling.

“I really love being a nurse.”

Nominate a nurse who exemplifies excellent clinical skills and compassionate care here: https://www.rileychildrens.org/form/riley-daisy-award

Photos submitted and by Mike Dickbernd, IU Health visual journalist, mdickbernd@iuhealth.org