ORHC Psychiatric Care Benefits from Tireless Work of Lisa Cox

As the Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner on the inpatient mental health unit at Ottumwa Regional Health Center, Lisa Cox is truly a hero to some of the most vulnerable patients in our region. She works tirelessly each day, many times staying late into the evening to complete notes, collect patient histories, and check medication administration records.

“Staff absolutely adores her positive attitude and enthusiasm,” stated Richard Pardilla, MD, Psychiatrist at ORHC. “Lisa adapts very well with difficult patients. Her calm demeanor and compassionate approach can deescalate increasingly agitated patients.”

She often detects medical issues in psychiatric patients such as UTI’s, HTN, or diabetes and collaborates with medical staff to assure care is received for all of the patient’s needs. She recently played a key role in saving a patient’s life as she quickly recognized the patient was suffering from Benzodiazepine withdrawal and Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome (NMS). Because of her prompt action the patient was transferred to the medical unit and received treatment, making a full recovery medically and the patient’s psychiatric status improved as well.

Coworker Joan Heslinga Goer, LMSW said, “I have seen her sit with a distraught patient for well over an hour just listening to them explain how they think the world has failed them. I am always in awe when I watch Lisa in action. She stays calm in the face of danger, and chaos does not derail her. Lisa inspires all of us to go the extra mile and do the best we can to assist our patients in improving their quality of life.”

Another characteristic that makes Lisa a hero too many is her generosity. From baking cookies and purchasing teddy bears for nursing home residents to donating clothing for families in need and even organizing a golf tournament and dinner to help area families pay for cancer treatment expenses she is always thinking of how she can help others.

Lisa Cox is a well-rounded clinician who genuinely cares about the people in her community. She is truly a hero who saves lives by making a difference every day.

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