Valley (Santa Clara Valley Medical Center) has been my second home for the past 26 years. Since I started working here, I got married and raised all my children; my colleagues have seen my kids grow up over these past years. My oldest son is now 24 years old. I started out as nurse's aide, trained and studied to become a registered nurse, received additional education and training to become a nurse practitioner. I recently went back to school again and received my doctoral of nursing degree. I have stayed all of these years because of my great team members and managers. This has been such a great place to work, I never even considered leaving.
Every position and place I have worked at VMC has been valuable to my nursing career. I worked in Med Surg for 7 years. Then I went into the Black Infant Health program. I believe everyone deserves to have their basic needs met. I am committed to making sure my patients get what they need. My experience as a nurse at VMC has helped me to be authentic, genuine, compassionate and respectful. I make sure my patients and families see who I am. This helps me build rapport and trust with clients. People deserve to be treated with respect and dignity, whether they are rich or poor. Patient experience is very important. If your patients don’t feel welcomed, they won’t come to see you for their healthcare.
I love the nurses I work with and I love the system at Valley. Everyone needs to have an opportunity to work with an amazing team like the one at Valley Homeless Healthcare Program. We all value and support each other. My medical director, Sara Cody, is amazing person, clinician and teacher. She mentors, guides and gives me opportunities to learn and grow. My fellow nurse colleague, Mark Block, helped me start our team and has remained a dedicated member of our care team for many years. My ideas are listened to and I never felt neglected. I am the lead of the backpack team at VMC. This is a special program that allows health care professionals to bring healthcare to people in our community, including the homeless. Our program has grown from 1 member to a team of over 60 people. It is an integrated program where we work with psychiatrics, psychologists, nurses, medical assistants, people who register the patient for care, and a specially trained health outreach worker. I feel loved by my team. We genuinely care about each other. It is a happy work environment every day. When your team works well, patients can see it and feel it. Valley supports our work to improve and sometimes save people's lives and give them dignity.
To the professionals out there, I encourage you to visit our health system to fully appreciate the high quality of care we deliver and our compassion for every patient, and their family. We are innovative, use leading edge technology, and are pioneers in the development of best practices for our profession. We are very good at what we do and feel very good about our collective and organization wide mission to ensure everyone’s health needs are met. VMC could be a healthcare home for you. Sometimes people chose to take the job that pays the best salary. Valley Medical Center pays well, but my colleagues aren’t here because of the money. They are here to serve others. Valley Medical Center is for those who want to make a difference in people’s lives. If you have a passion for taking care of those who are underserved, poor or marginalized, Valley Medical Center offers that opportunity and so much more. I go home from work feeling good about my efforts to positively impact the lives of the patients and families in our community. You affected someone’s life, not by the medicine you gave them, but by the way you listen and care for them. My work at Valley Medical Center allows me to provide high quality care to all patients who need it; making their lives better with kindness, respect, compassion, and value for human dignity