It takes a special person to be a nurse. One that cares. Extends unwavering compassion. Sacrifices for others. And at Florida Hospital, embodies the mission to heal the whole person — in body, mind and spirit.
If you have ever wondered if you might be a “Florida Hospital nurse,” we have some ways to find out.
Florida Hospital nurse evangelists, Paula J. Collins MBA, BSN, RN, CNOR, RACR, and Ronnie A. Tihal, BSN, RN, CNOR explain five attributes that create the glow of a Florida Hospital nurse in some key clinical areas.
1. A Florida Hospital Nurse likes unique and challenging opportunities
Florida Hospital is one of Central Florida’s largest networks of care with an extensive range of clinical services and specialties.
“One of the unique nursing opportunities within Florida Hospital, especially within surgical nursing, is our transplant program, which is the only one of its kind in Central Florida,” says Collins.
She explains that with nine Florida Hospital locations, there are opportunities for surgical nurses in nearly every specialty, including general, vascular, orthopedic, gynecological, oncological, neurological, transplant (kidney, lung and heart) and open-heart surgery. Florida Hospital Orlando, the flagship hospital, offers all of these areas under one roof.
And with these extensive surgical services brings additional nursing opportunities.
“Because of our heart transplant and open-heart surgery programs, we also offer a higher complexity of cases within our CVICU department,” notes Tihal.
She adds that Florida Hospital Orlando is the only hospital in the Central Florida area to offer some of the higher acuity cases for nurses to get this experience. “Nurses who like to be challenged in their daily work, or who are looking for the challenge of high acuity patients and for opportunity to learn and grow are often attracted to our hospital for this reason.”
2. A Florida Hospital nurse likes to think critically
Putting those thinking caps on, even in the most stressful and intense of situations, is a prized skill of a Florida Hospital nurse.
“A nurse who wants a career in the operating room at Florida Hospital loves to think critically, clinically assess patients, think of patients’ every need as their advocate and make sure their surgeons, anesthesiologists and surgical techs have every possible thing that they could potentially need during surgery,” says Collins.
When it comes to CVICU nursing, the skills are similar.
Tihal explains, “Many people know they want to go into this area of nursing because they are seeking the challenge and experience that the nursing care of patients in the CVICU brings. It’s a challenging environment, but these nurses are driven to learn the most acute skills, so they are attracted to this area of nursing.”
She adds that the CVICU is a great learning environment, with many nurses using their experience as a stepping stone to advance their careers.
3. A Florida Hospital nurse likes to be part of a team
Teamwork is the cornerstone of what makes a Florida Hospital nurse — and their patient care — exceptional.
“There is a true team spirit when you are doing surgery, from collaboration with OR nurse and the surgical tech, to the lock-step coordination with the surgeon, surgical nurses have a knack for being able to anticipate every next step and what their surgical team will need,” says Collins.
And there are parallels the CVICU, where very critical patients are in need of a high level of one-to-one care. “There is a very particular culture of the CVICU unit; the people who work there are often the elite of nurses with a high level of skill and a high tolerance for stress,” notes Tihal. Because of this, there is a unique sense of team and support among all CVICU nurses.
4. A Florida Hospital nurse likes to uphold high standards, professionally and personally
Collins describes, “Surgical nurses are extremely detail oriented, but they also have to be a patient advocate during surgery when the patient can’t speak for him or herself once anesthetized.”
“The nurse becomes the voice for the patient in the operating room and the patient’s protector to make sure what’s going on in surgery is best for the patient. This takes a level of tenacity; if something doesn’t seem right the surgical nurse has to bring it up – the nurse has to understand everything that is going on in surgery so they can explain it to the patient,” she continues.
And there are certain personal attributes that work best in this environment, which often attracts strong personalities with the ability to handle stressful situations and deal with critical situations at hand.
Tihal adds, “In the CVICU, our nurses hold high standards and are committed to exceptional patient care.”
Taking care of very critical patients, nurses who work in this area have to have the natural ability to support and communicate with patients and their families as an integral part of the healing process. “Families are stressed and patients are very sick, so our CVICU nurses have to have to be able to create a special experience for patients and families under these circumstances,” says Tihal.
5. A Florida Hospital nurse embodies compassionate care for the whole person — in body, mind and spirit
With the mission to extend the healing ministry of Christ, Florida Hospital nurses must be committed to embracing this mission-based care for each patient’s body, mind and spirit.
“We are not necessarily not looking for religious nurses, but we are looking for nurses who respect our mission, and the spiritual needs of our patients and their fellow team members,” advises Collins.
She adds, “It’s a really unique culture at Florida Hospital, our nurses extend the same compassion and drive toward their teammates as they do their patients or anyone that they come into contact with at the hospital.”
Some nurses pray with patients or are asked to join a prayer session led by family members — it’s the freedom to do this at Florida Hospital that is something special. Collins says, “We prioritize the emotional and spiritual needs of anyone in our hospitals and that brings a sense of calm to our care.”
Tihal echoes Collins’s sentiments, adding “Florida Hospital nurses embrace our mission and elevate our culture of caring.”
As nurse evangelists, Collins and Tihal — both nurses themselves — help in nurse talent acquisition throughout all nine of Florida Hospital’s locations. Their role is to bring in their clinical experience and expertise to help hiring managers, recruiters and candidates in providing more clinical guidance and support.
Nurse evangelists can talk to candidates on a more clinical level and answer their questions. This helps make candidates more transparent and comfortable when talking about their career goals and opportunities.
“Bringing in the clinical piece, I love to guide and direct candidates and help them find the perfect fit and nursing career path for them,” says Collins.
“I enjoy being able to assist in finding the best candidates for this hospital. As a 32-year employee of Florida Hospital, I believe in our mission and our work, and I’m able to impart it to the candidates that I can connect with,” shares Tihal.
Have what it takes? Learn more about becoming a Florida Hospital nurse.