Family ties in the ED
“Where do you see yourself in six months?” All it took was that question from a friend to spark an idea in Bailey Shaffer. As the COVID pandemic wore on, she knew it was time for a change.
“I’d been working in healthcare for a number of years when COVID hit and everything changed. With six months under my belt as a post-surgical charge nurse, our unit made the shift to care exclusively for COVID patients,” she said.
Bailey attended an onsite career fair at LMH Health in fall 2021 and interviewed with nursing directors from hospital. She was hired on the spot, joining the emergency department in December with a full-time position on the day shift. It didn’t take long for Bailey to recognize that LMH Health is an exceptional place to work and shared that with everyone she knew.
A family affair
Gilda Singleton was involved with healthcare for many years in a variety of capacities, both professional and personal. She’d worked in home health care, insurance, dental offices and was married to a firefighter. When caring for her parents as their health declined, her father urged Gilda to move higher.
“He told me that I was meant to care for people,” she shared. “I took and earned my CNA license while caring for my parents who were both on hospice. Providing end-of-life care was the most difficult and rewarding thing I’ve ever done.”
That experience led Gilda to begin working in healthcare, starting with phlebotomy and eventually shifting to working with cardiac patients. She knew she was meant for this work, which also came with an added perk – working on the same floor in the same hospital as her daughter, Bailey.
When Bailey fell in love with the LMH Health emergency department, its culture and her co-workers, it was only natural that she shared it with Gilda. She applied and accepted a position in the emergency department in February 2022. She works as a part-time technician – assisting nurses, transporting patients, cleaning rooms and helping out in any way, shape or form she can.
“Bailey told me how happy I’d be working at LMH and I was ready for a change. It’s been the best thing I’ve ever done, besides having my three kids,” she said. “I feel like I’m accomplishing something, so I give more and more because I’m part of the team and want to provide outstanding care.”
What is it about LMH?
Bailey and Gilda both shared that while healthcare faces a number of challenges right now, the teamwork and camaraderie they’ve experienced at LMH Health has been nothing short of amazing.
“There was one weekend that we were pretty short-staffed. Jan Wiebe – the ED director – came in on her day off and sat with a patient who needed care, just so that we could have some extra help,” Bailey explained.
Gilda enthusiastically agreed.
“All of our management team does that – our nursing manager Jen Lemus, everyone. The dynamics here are so awesome,” she said. “It’s not your job, it’s not my job - it’s our job. If you don’t have time to get into a room, you’ve got a team that’s always ready to help. That makes a huge difference for patient care.”
Both Bailey and Gilda continue to share their experiences to try and recruit others to LMH Health. One of Bailey’s former co-workers has made the jump and Gilda continues to urge her contacts to do the same.
“I’ve recruited one person and another one is talking about coming here. I recently went into a room with a patient and encountered someone I’d previously worked with when I introduced myself,” Gilda said.
And working at LMH Health provides another bonus – Gilda’s working alongside Bailey once again.
“We work together so well, being able to anticipate what each other’s going to do,” she said. “I can’t imagine being anywhere else.”