Leading the way: 2014 Nurses Week Tribute

Crystal Lopez picHealthcare is a field that is constantly changing, adapting, and innovating ways to keep our world healthy. Nurses are now stepping out of their comfort zones and acting as catalysts like never before; rallying for evolution and improvement. Nurses are helping to pave the way toward new technologies that will improve quality of care; helping resolve emerging issues in a world where people are living longer. Yet preventable, chronic diseases are at an all time high. That is why 2014 is all about honoring our flag wavers, our trailblazers that are leading their patients, colleagues, and organizations in the right direction. It is easy to see how in health care, nurses are leading the way and deserve special recognition this Nurses Week May 6-12th.

I have had the honor and privilege of being a part of the team at Community Health of South Florida Inc. (CHI) for four years. When I became an LPN in 2009 I had a very specific desire in mind; to touch the hearts and hands of the sick and needy and bring care to those who needed it most. I didn’t want to just give out Band-Aids and deal with superficial issues with simple fixes. I wanted to get my hands dirty and be in situations where getting the patient better was going to take lots of blood, sweat, and tears. But know that my efforts would have a lasting impact on the life of that person. I wanted a challenge, not routine. I found the perfect place two months after I sat for my Boards and here I am, still rolling with the punches. Some of the patients have been here for years, and some are new faces but the challenges are the same. Being a nurse at CHI has helped me have a sense of fulfillment, knowing that I have touched at least one person’s life for the better.

At CHI we celebrate not only nurses, but our Nursing Team; our Registered Nurses, Licensed Practical Nurses, and Patient Care Technicians that drive us forward every day. To say our Nursing Team is incredible is an understatement, they are superstars.

Our Patient Care Technicians are the soldiers in the trenches; assessing and identifying issues before the patients even see a Nurse or Provider for the first time. They are our investigators and regulators, gathering the information necessary and keeping us in line as to where the rest of the team is going and what comes next. Licensed Practical Nurses are our main support; they are the lollipop carrying, smile inducing beacons in Pediatrics and the teachers and support systems in Primary Care. They listen to the little dilemmas, fix the small cracks, and are the glue that keeps the team together while also providing direct patient care. Our Registered Nurses are our keepers; watching, assessing, and stepping in when the situation gets critical. They provide a wealth of knowledge that the rest of the team depends on for success. Regardless of the position, our Nursing Team is helping CHI move toward new horizons, accepting ever-changing roles and becoming active contributors and innovators in the health care system.

Community Health of South Florida, Inc. has been providing care to residents of South Florida for over 40 years and we have seen phenomenal growth over these four decades, with our Nursing Team at the helm. A heartfelt thanks to the nurses and PCT’s who are no longer a part of our team, but helped pave the way for progress and success and the RN’s, LPN’s, and PCT’s who are part of the team now moving us forward in incredible ways.

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