A cancer diagnosis never arrives at a good time. Joanie learned of her pancreatic cancer diagnosis at a particularly difficult time — just days after the death of her father.
Special consolation came in the form of Kathleen (Kassie) Lopez, RN, who provided inpatient care to Joanie after her surgery at Mass General.
“We knew that with Kassie, we were being cared for by a true expert,” writes her sister, Ann Prestipino. “In her quiet way, Kassie created instantaneous rapport with Joanie, her husband and me. She managed every aspect of my sister’s care with great grace and competence. She was at Joanie’s side during some of her most difficult days in post-operative recovery.”
While masterfully managing Joanie’s clinical needs, Kassie made time for extras, including a “spa day” when she’d luxuriantly wash and brush Joanie’s hair and relax her feet with a massage. “Kassie relieved my sister’s anxiety and helped her feel human again,” writes Ann. “She represents all that is best about her profession. Kassie is a wonderful human being who brought us both her high level of professional competence and her ability to connect deeply with patients and their loved ones.”