Hester Thomas - RN, Nurse Navigator

1/7/2014

Lafayette General Employee Health was administering employee Smokerlyzer™ tests to identify chronic smokers for insurance purposes. When an LPN registered off the charts, she was retested to ensure accuracy. The results were confirmed. The problem was, this employee insisted that she did not smoke.

This prompted Nurse Navigator Hester Thomas, RN, to investigate further. She asked numerous questions about the employee’s living environment, such as living near a burning cane field or having space heaters in the home. It was discovered that the employee lived in a home that relied on old space heaters for heat. The employee also said her daughter had been complaining of headaches for weeks. Hester advised the employee to purchase carbon monoxide detectors immediately. The employee did so, and the detector alarms went off instantly when activated. The space heaters were replaced.

Hester retested the employee, and results came back normal. Hester’s willingness to trust an employee and demonstrate real concern for her health truly made a difference. Lives were saved.

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