Bridget Nelson always knew that she wanted to be a nurse. What she didn’t know while in nursing school was how the COVID-19 pandemic would influence her every move. As a healthcare hero, Nelson strives to assist patients when they need it most. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing and is a Registered Nurse in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
For over 2 years, she has been a monumental component of the success at Froedtert Pleasant Prairie Hospital‘s Intensive Care Unit. While serving as a caregiver, she finds rewards in helping others on their hardest days.
More Than a Nursing
Nursing is about more than treating patients. The Winona State University graduate has always had a passion for helping others. Being a nurse in the ICU means that patients are critically ill when under her care. It is a heavy weight to carry, but Nelson carries it well.
She says, “I feel extremely humbled when I am able to be the one responsible for the care and improvement in someone’s health and that families of patients put their trust in me. I love the challenge that working in the Intensive Care Unit brings and am thankful that my job gives me the ability to use that knowledge.”
Nelson isn’t just a nurse. She’s a family member to her patients when they don’t have anyone physically there. Nelson also adopted the title of “friend” by being a listening ear. Her experiences with COVID-19 have been unlike anything she’s ever experienced in her life. However, these tragedies do not fall short of highlighting Nelson’s ability to adapt and persevere.
Her nursing skills are exceptional and that alone makes her a hometown hero. Her willingness to also open up to her patients makes her a standout.
A Destructive Disease
COVID-19 is a destructive disease. It affects everyone differently but certainly has affected all of us in one way or another. Nurse Nelson has seen the in’s and out’s of COVID-19. She says, “what makes the caring for these patients so difficult is that our knowledge of this virus is so new and always changing, and that best practices have continued to evolve, along with the suggested care and treatment of these patients.”
This disease isn’t just challenging for those who are diagnosed. Staff in hospitals across the world are continually troubled with the effects of this illness. Nelson says, “To be honest, my experience working with COVID-19 patients has been the most unique and challenging experience I have had so far in my nursing career.”
Hope on the Horizon
Far too often, Nelson has been a witness to the detrimental effects of this virus. Mentally and physically, she and many other healthcare professionals are exhausted. However, hope is on the horizon for Nelson and our community.
“We depend on the support from others to heal and COVID-19 makes that extremely hard,” says Nelson. She’s hopeful that a day will come when the circumstances are different. On a positive note, advancements are being made in the healthcare industry.
Nelson believes that our hope lies in the COVID-19 vaccine. It’s a shot of hope. When made available to the hospital employees, Nelson was eager to sign up to become vaccinated. After watching countless people struggle, it wasn’t even a question whether she would get the vaccine or not.
Heroic people make choices not just for themselves, but for the betterment of others. She posses heroic qualities including her willingness to become one of the first hundred employees at her hospital to get the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.
She’s doing everything in her power to prevent herself and those around her from experiencing the severe symptoms that COVID-19 can cause. By being vaccinated, she says, “I can prevent the spread of it and protect those who are at high risk of dying from COVID-19.”
She understands that not all individuals are able to receive this type of protection, such as those who are immunocompromised or young children. However, the nurse weighs in by saying, “If we can achieve any sort of herd immunity with this vaccine and decrease the hospitalization and death rates even the slightest bit, I will view that as a success.”
Nelson has certainly earned the title of being a hero. She knows better than anyone just how impactful this virus is. She provides a word of encouragement and tips to help with COVID-19 related information.
Nelson’s Tips & Advice:
- Research information regarding the COVID-19 Vaccine
- Use the CDC as a rescource
- Debunk Myths
- Think not only about yourself but those around you
- Stay informed about COVID-19 from credible sources
- Wash your hands
- Virtually check in with loved ones
- Socially distance
- Wear masks
Nominate a Healthcare Hero
Click here to nominate a Healthcare hero. Share your story on the Racine County Eye and thank a hero. Check out other stories of heroism, by clicking here. Contact Emma Widmar at email@example.com for more information about the series.