Nurses Week: Christina CorreaMay 17, 2016
Nurses are the heart and blood of hospitals. They make up the majority of our medical staff; we have over twice as many RNs as we do physicians! They care for patients and form relationships with them and their families, some which can make a lasting impression.
Christina Correa, an Intensive Care Unit float pool nurse at Shelby Baptist, told us why her career is special to her and how it has impacted her life.
What do you like about being a nurse?
The best part is being able to take care of people. I enjoy making a difference in their life.
What do you do? What’s a normal day like for you?
I’m an ICU float pool, which means that I’m always changing departments. Every day is very different. Today, I’m in Labor and Delivery, but other days I’m in ICU, the ER or Medical Surgery. I go where they need me, and I love that I get to do something different all the time.
On average I look after about 2-4 patients a day, but it depends on the unit. In the ICU, we are only assigned 2 patients at a time so we can make sure that they get the care they deserve.
Why did you become a nurse?
When I was in High School, around the age of 16, I had a friend named Julie. She was on dialysis, which meant that every day she had to go and have her blood filtered. Even though she had to go through this difficulty, she was always living normally. You would have never known she had such a major medical condition unless you knew her well.
I went with her family to the beach every year for vacation, and I would volunteer to take Julie to dialysis every day. I would help her by comforting her, soothing her and distracting her. That’s when I saw that I was helping her by being there for her, and that’s when I knew I wanted to become a nurse.
What is your favorite thing about working for Shelby?
My favorite thing is that I get to follow my patients, especially because I work in the float pool. I can go from the ER and see them come in, and a week later I can see them in recovery from the surgery they just had. I get to make connections with them and see how they are doing, which is sometimes hard to do when you only work in one department.
Shelby is very family oriented. I don’t feel like I’m coming to work, I feel like I’m coming to hang out with my family members. Everybody knows everybody. I’ll be greeted by everyone from doctors, to housekeeping. I’ve been here 7 years and it’s nice to know that people take the time to know you. It is very comforting.
Do you have any stories that made you think, “This is why I’m a nurse?”
I took care of a lady about 2 or 3 years ago. She was in her 40s and had battled breast cancer twice. It came back, and she ended up passing. Before she passed, I had gotten to know her and her 3 kids very well.
A year later, I was wheeling out a patient to their car and the driver was the older daughter of the patient who had passed. The daughter jumped out of the car and hugged me, crying, and said “You took care of my mom! Thank you!” That made such an impact on me, especially knowing how much of a difference I had made to her by taking care of her mom.
What should people know about nurses?
I wish more people realized that we’re their advocates and are here to make sure everything goes smoothly. We make sure that they get the best treatment that we can provide. We’re on their side. We’re here to help them, and all we want is for them to get better.
Do you have any advice for someone who wants to become a nurse?
It has its bad moments, but it’s very rewarding. I don’t have any regrets whatsoever. It’s a very rewarding job. You definitely see people at their hardest times, and you get to help lift them up. That makes everything worth it.