National Nurses Week is celebrated each year from May 6 to May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, who’s credited as founder of modern nursing. And while Community Medical Centers aims to recognize each of its 2,200-plus nurses, MedWatchToday.com caught up with a few of Community’s longest tenured caregivers to get insight on the nursing profession.
Margaret Wild is a perioperative nurse at Clovis Community Medical Center and oversees the training of nurses and surgical techs for bariatric surgery, and assists in other surgeries as well. As a surgical nurse she does the paperwork, sets up the operating room, interviews the patient and assists anesthesiologists before scrubbing in for surgery.
She has been part of the Community family for more than three decades, since graduating from Fresno State in 1979, and colleagues say she is held in high regard for her expertise, politeness, work ethic and willingness to mentor others and share her knowledge.
Wild sat down to share her many memories of the profession that is still a passion for her and the several members of her family who followed in her footsteps with health care careers of their own.
Why did you become a nurse?
Wild: I became a nurse because I love taking care of people. When I worked as a nursing assistant at convalescent homes, I loved working with the elderly. It was so rewarding.
What journey did you take to become a nurse?
I volunteered as a candy striper while I was in high school at the children’s hospital, known back then as Valley Children’s Hospital. I then worked at convalescent hospitals before coming to Community, working as a nursing assistant. I then worked as a nurse permittee, until I received my registered nurse license in 1979. I went to work on the neurosurgical floor for two years. At that time my husband Keith Wild also worked as an R.N. In 1981 we both were hired to work in surgery. In 1985, Keith became supervisor of surgery and I could not report to him so I transferred to Sierra Community Hospital. In 1995, Sierra hospital closed and a lot of us moved to Clovis Community, where I work today in the surgery department.
What are the biggest changes you have seen in the nursing profession since you started?
Throughout the years, I have seen nursing shortages come and go. In the operating room, I have seen changes in technology. We have also seen changes in the electronic age, such as Epic [software technology] in the operating room.
What do you about working at Community Medical Centers?
My mother Armon Darmanian worked as a volunteer for the surgery waiting room for many years. My mother-in-law Betty Wild was in charge of volunteers for years, my husband and my sister, Christine Darmanian, all worked for Community Medical Centers. So we truly thought of Community hospitals as family. The staff at Community works so hard and close together. It truly feels like a family.
What is your most memorable moment as a nurse?
It was when I stayed scrubbed in for over nine hours at Fresno Community Hospital [now known as Community Regional Medical Center] to reattach a severed arm. It was so rewarding to be a part of that. ()
What is your best piece of advice for new nurses?
Work. Work hard and learn as much as you can for all areas of nursing. It is a profession that is always changing and moving forward. My philosophy of nursing is to always remember why you went into this profession. The patients should be the No. 1 priority. Enjoy what you do, believe in what you do and do it to the best of your ability. Each of my charge nurses, supervisors and managers have always been wonderful to me and my family. I cherish all of the wonderful memories at Community Regional, Sierra and Clovis Community. Throughout the years, I have made lifelong friends.
This story was reported by Bonni Montevecchi. She can be reached at MedWatchToday@communitymedical.org.