ER Nurses Week: Behind-the-scenes look of daily lives for Deaconess nurses

This week allows people to show appreciation for Tri-State nurses
Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 7:52 PM CDT
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NEWBURGH, Ind. (WFIE) - This week is National Emergency Room Nurses Week, which provides the chance for people to show appreciation for the hardworking men and women who help the community in the most crucial moments

Kate Broster gears up for her daily shift in the ER.

“I’ve been an ER nurse for about a year and a half now, I started here as a new grad,” Broster said. “I fell in love. As soon as I came here, this is what I wanted to do, nothing else was for me.”

She prepares herself for the day while it’s quiet, but she never knows when chaos will strike.

“The stress is a lot, because sometimes you have a few critical patients you have to manage at the same time, and then you never know what you’re going to get,” Broster said.

Whatever comes through the door, Broster says she’s ready to learn from it.

“You can’t think that you know everything, you can’t be sure of yourself,” Broster said. “You have to be open to new experiences, open to learn. Learn from people who have been here 20 years, learn from people who have been here two.”

In another room, Crystal Hubert tends to a patient, a little boy with a broken arm.

“I have been a nurse in the ER for 18 years,” Hubert said.

Although Hubert has seen many broken bones through the years, there is always something new to learn.

“In all of the years, I’ve learned you never know everything,” Hubert said. “It’s always changing, the medical field, period, is always changing. You have to be somebody that can adapt to change.”

The little boy with the broken arm leaves in good spirits and leaves Hubert smiling, but she says that isn’t always the case.

“It’s very stressful, and it will get to you,” Hubert said. “So you just have to put that in the background of your emotions and do your job.”

So as nurses work in the ER, sometimes on a person’s worst day, how can we show our appreciation?

“Just reaching out to us, making sure we’re okay,” Broster said. “Check in, say, ‘Hey, how are you, I know this is stressful, can we do anything for you?’”

“Times are really tough right now, and we could use all the encouragement we can get,” Hubert said.

Another shift goes by in the pandemic, taking a toll on veterans like Hubert, new nurses like Broster, and Katie Donovan. Working in the pandemic is all they know.

“Have patience with us because we’re working our best, especially being short some days, and having a lot of patients,” Donovan said.

“My family members say, ‘Well, if you can get through this, you can get through anything,’ and I think that’s true,” Broster said. “I really do believe that us as a team, if we can get through this, we’ll be unstoppable.”

All of these nurses say despite the stress, there is no place they’d rather be. They say it’s nice to have a week dedicated to them, but there’s no wrong time to tell a nurse you’re thankful for them.

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