It’s been said that being a nurse is much more than a job, it’s a calling. Nurses touch every aspect of our health care journey, both clinically and emotionally, especially over the last year as our frontline workers have faced the COVID-19 pandemic.
At Mercy Health, our post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) nurses provide intensive observation and treatment for patients who have undergone anesthesia.
“I have worked in the PACU since 2001 but have been with Mercy Health for 29 years,” Craig Gurney, RN, says. “I enjoy taking care of a multitude of different patients. I like to see people get better and move toward a healthier lifestyle. I am proud to be a nurse working alongside all the people that keep St. Charles Hospital running amidst the pandemic. I am proud that we can deliver quality care to the public, even though COVID-19 has made it tough. This is what we were meant to do.”
Julie Vargas, RN, adds, “I’ve been at St. Charles Hospital for 29 years and knowing that I am helping patients to feel better is the most rewarding part of my job. Over the past year, the pandemic has been very hard. I would never change professions, and I am very proud of how nursing handled the stress of the pandemic.”
Another PACU team member, Rhea Hernandez, RN, describes how many of her fellow nurses have been going above and beyond the call of duty.
“The past year was very difficult for nurses… It was difficult to face the unknown, but I wanted to keep my pledge to practice my profession faithfully and to the best of my ability,” Rhea shares. “The most rewarding part of my job is hearing my patients tell me that they are so appreciative of the work that I do. It makes me feel good to know that I have helped someone heal or eased their pain.”
And finally, PACU nurse Andrea Mefferd, who has been an RN for 20 years, shares what drives her day in and day out.
“I get the most joy out of making people feel comforted,” Andrea shares. “I like when I can leave work and feel like I really made a difference. I truly care about people and want to help them feel better. The past year has made me proud of my profession, at times wish I could’ve done more to help.”
We’re grateful for all our talented and dedicated nurses at Mercy Health, where nurses mean the world.
Read more stories that celebrate our nurses.