This is inspiring: MANVILLE: Woman focuses nursing skills on patients with special medical needs |

When Manville resident Stacy Pierrot, RN, mentions that she works as an overnight nurse at the Matheny Medical and Educational Center here, the response from people in the community is often something like, “Oh, you must have so much patience.”

Matheny is a special hospital and educational facility for children and adults with medically complex developmental disabilities, but Ms. Pierrot says it’s the patients who display a remarkable amount of tolerance.

”If they’re thirsty,” she says, “they have to wait for someone to get them some water. If they’re cold, they need someone to get them a blanket.”

After working in the emergency room of an acute care hospital, Ms. Pierrot much prefers the atmosphere of Matheny.

”I’ve never loved anything as much as I have this,” she says, pointing to the connections that have been developed with the patients. Many patients are non-verbal, but Ms. Pierrot recalls her early days at Matheny when a patient she was told could talk wouldn’t talk to her.

”I’d been here about three months,” she says, “and I went into her room to give her medication, and she looked at me and said, ‘Stacy’.”

Ms. Pierrot, who has been at Matheny for two years, received her associate of applied science degree from Raritan Valley Community College in North Branch. Outside of Matheny, she has a special interest in learning more about venomous toxicology and infectious diseases such as Hansen’s Disease. In 2005, she spent two weeks working with FEMA and the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, caring for victims of Hurricane Katrina.