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Treating patients with compassion and hope

May Kung works with some of the most marginalized patients in the province, but she sees them as people worthy of dignity and respect. Her dedication, compassion and belief in trauma-informed practice have earned her a PHSA+ Award.
May Kung, patient care coordinator, Ashworth 4, Forensic Psychiatric Hospital
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Being a patient care coordinator for the Severe Psychosis and Intensive Management unit of the Forensic Psychiatric Hospital is not an easy job, but it is one May Kung does with care and compassion for her patients earning her a PHSA+ Award.

As a jack-of-all-trades, she helps with discharges, transfers, monitoring the progress of patients, works closely with social workers, psychiatrists and other clinicians to make sure patients are receiving the care they need. May is also the direct supervisor for the nurses, health-care workers and administrative staff within her unit, truly demonstrating how important of a figure she is.

The patients on the Severe Psychosis and Intensive Management unit, also known as Ashworth 4, include people with histories of violence, personality disorders, and those who have been deemed not criminally responsible for crimes due to mental health disorders. May sees these often marginalized people as people who are in need of support.

May Kung, patient care coordinator, Ashworth 4, Forensic Psychiatric Hospital

May’s dedication has brought patients who needed to be secluded back into the unit after others had lost hope for them, including one patient who has now reached the point they can be discharged. 

May’s compassion drives her to look for out-of-the-box solutions to meet patient needs. She encourages staff to see patients as people needing things like nicotine craving management, music on the unit to help distract from auditory hallucinations, and healthy interactions with staff daily through games, colouring, sports, etc. 

She is not afraid to be innovative in a highly secure environment and knows patients on a personal level by chatting with them about their hopes and dreams.

To May, health care is about more than diagnosis and treatment. She takes into account each patient’s family, loved ones and their history of trauma when she interacts with them.

“I have been working at FPH for over 12 years and Ashworth 4 was never a desirable unit for staff to work on. Since May has become patient care coordinator, she has attracted staff of similar heart and mindset, which changes the landscape of the unit. I feel blessed that I get to work with May,” says Hannah Pang, May’s nominator and a family physician at the Forensic Psychiatric Hospital.

Congratulations to May on her PHSA+ Award!

About the PHSA+ Awards program

The PHSA+ Awards are part of an internal recognition program that celebrates teams and individuals who bring our PHSA values to life in the workplace. They go above and beyond to serve patients and families across B.C. Read about the other PHSA+ award recipients for 2023.

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