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Tech provided compassion when fellow caregiver needed it most

Nurse reflects on the exceptional emergency care she received in Rapid City

No one wants to be ill, let alone need emergency care. But for nurses and others who work in hospitals, the experience can be daunting for another reason: the people providing their care will probably know who they are, which can feel embarrassing.

Juli Bovard, RN and Clinical Documentation Specialist for Regional Health, felt this way when she ended up in the Emergency Department (ED) of Rapid City Hospital this past winter, hemorrhaging from a ruptured diverticula. But the care she received from one caregiver in particular took away all of her fears, even once she realized she knew him when he was a child.

Jake Holt, ED Technician, hurried to Juli’s side when she passed out in line at the ED. He stuck by Juli during her stay in the ED and then all the way through her time in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). “He was my positive throughout the entire experience,” Juli said. “I had lost a lot of blood and was going in and out of consciousness. But every time I came to, Jake was there seeing if I was okay, wiping sweat away or comforting my husband,” she said.

At some point, Juli realized Jake was the son of Stacy Holt, RN at Hospice House, who Juli used to work with in the Ortho-Neuro-Surgical unit and in Clinical Quality. “The last time I saw Jake he was probably 10 years old, so it’s so different to see him as a man. Even as a young kid, I remember him being very caring.” She has since spoken with others who received care from Jake, and they all had the same experience. Stacy said Jake has always been a “go-getter” and she is very proud that he is making a difference in people’s lives.

Jake, who is in a paramedicine program at Western Dakota Technical Institute, recalled rushing to help Juli, realizing who she was and recognizing that she needed immediate care. “She couldn’t tell us what was going on so I’m glad I was able to communicate with her husband and then work with the other caregivers to make sure she received care immediately.” He made it a point to go with her when others transported Juli to the ICU. He also went up to see her after his shift ended.

“I’m glad I was able to provide her with a sense of security,” Jake said. “You don’t always have time to reflect on the patients you’ve helped and hear about the experience from their perspective, so it’s heartwarming to hear her say that I provided high-quality care.”

While Jake is considering attending nursing school, one thing is certain – he loves working in the ED. “I like the fast pace and I enjoy calming patients down and helping them realize they are in good hands,” he said.

Juli said every Emergency Department caregiver and provider who helped her that day provided excellent care. But the one person she’ll never forget is Jake. “He didn’t just do his job. He cared about me and for me. I will never forget that.”

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