Health care heroes: Quarantined with your best friend

Health care heroes: Quarantined with your best friend

As COVID-19 continues to spread, Nancy spends most of her day on the phone and computer coordinating discharge plans with nurses, physicians and social workers. Seeing her patients become healthy enough to be reunited with their families is the part this inpatient care manager at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital likes best about her job.

In this unprecedented time, families are incredibly grateful to Nancy for her frequent phone updates on their loved ones, especially when hospital visitors are limited and face-to-face meetings are prohibited.

She’s worked at the hospital for 40 years, and her best friend Paul has been there the whole time. He’s a respiratory care manager who spends most of his days tirelessly working to secure his staff with the proper protective equipment and coordinating ventilators to make sure there are enough for patients who need them.

They both say they’re grateful to be in the thick of this fight against COVID-19 with their best friend.

It also helps that Nancy and Paul Hoffmann are married.

“Being a care manager on the best of days is stressful and COVID-19 has only intensified this,” Nancy says. “The workload of coordinating care for each patient and family has become more challenging.”

The couple has two daughters, Melissa and Emily, and two granddaughters, Savannah and Helen, born just three weeks apart last year.

The Hoffmanns have a large extended family. Between the two of them, 9 siblings, 16 nieces and nephews and 9 great-nieces and nephews, to be exact. Paul calls Nancy the social butterfly of the pair, so she makes sure they all keep in touch via Zoom and FaceTime, and stay busy over Yahtzee and Backgammon.

At the end of the day, the two say they are thankful to be “quarantined with their best friend.”

“I am so proud to be a nurse. I see commitment and dedication in every team member,” Nancy said. “I have also seen the community rally to support the staff with meals, friends donating masks, notes of support on cars and various signage of support to all. We are all in this together and we will all get through this together.”

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About the Author

Kelsey Sopchyk
Kelsey Sopchyk

Kelsey Sopchyk, health enews contributor, is a media relations coordinator at Advocate Aurora Health. She earned her BA in journalism and mass communications from the University of Iowa. In her spare time, you can find Kelsey tending to her plant children, trying new sushi restaurants in Chicago and cheering on the Cubs.