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Nurse Tom Buczynski thinks about his patients as family and attempts to meet not only their behavioral health needs, but their social and personal needs. He plays games, such as Uno, with the patients and engages them in conversation. One of the greatest examples of his outreach is the EW3 Barbershop.
Tom comes in on his day off, with his clippers and spray, to provide haircuts to the patients. Those who are interested sign up, and Tom dedicates his time to complete all the haircuts. Clients gather in the group room and watch television and talk about life, not unlike what they might do at a community barbershop.
Tom helps patients to feel whole and human again during a time when they are having a really challenging emotional time. One patient said: “Tom made me look dope. He made me feel like I could go back to my job and be the cool guy I was before I was too depressed to take care of myself.”
Tom encompasses what’s needed in a behavioral health nurse. He normalizes a very scary and stigmatizing experience to allow the patients to recognize their own self-worth. If you look good, you often feel good and Tom takes this premise to a new level.
Tom works at The Hospital of Central Connecticut – in part of the Behavioral Health Network. You can learn more about it here.