CAREERS IN NURSING
THE ER : IT’S A MATTER OF TIME – ALLIANCE HEALTH DEACONESS
by Vickie Jenkins – Writer/Photographer
When it comes to helping others, there is someone special that seems to have a real gift for it. No matter what the situation, Ronny Gordon, RN is ready to take charge as a lead nurse or focus on his paramedic skills in the ER at AllianceHealth Deaconess Hospital.
Ronny grew up in Newcastle, OK where he still resides. Serving as a volunteer for the Newcastle Fire Department, he realized his calling was to help others. He became a paramedic and worked at Norman Regional Hospital for 14 years. It was at that time that he decided to continue his education and become a nurse. He accomplished his goal and is presently going to school for his Masters.
Asking Ronny if anyone influenced him to become a nurse, he replied, “No, I decided to go into the medical field on my own. In fact, I was the first one in my family to become a nurse. I am a paramedic here at the hospital several days a week and a Lead RN for several days. It’s kind of a crazy schedule but I love it. I like the fast-action variety of the ER. Either one, I know it is my job to take care of the people in the best way that I can,” he said.
Ronny is married and enjoys spending time with his wife and his two children; a daughter 12 and a son, 9. “Both, my son and my daughter are into basketball. My son likes football too. My daughter is entering middle school so she wants to do cross country. I know it is going to be a busy year,” he said with a smile. “We try to spend family time as much as we can, including swimming and just hanging out together,” he added.
Asking Ronny what the best part of his job is, he replied, “the best part of my job is administering to the patient, and seeing the results. When the people come to the ER, I see them at their best and worst. In the ER, we don’t have time to develop longtime friendship. We usually have a 2 to 3 hour window and that’s it.”
“I didn’t have any mentors while going through nursing school but after graduation, there were a few people at Norman Reginal Hospital that I really looked up to. Since I was a paramedic, things were quite a big different than being a nurse. I had to learn about time management. I admired Stephanie Allen for teaching me some of the nursing skills. In fact, I am still good friends with Stephanie. My time management has improved so much,” he commented.
What qualities make a good nurse? “A nurse has to have patience and a true understanding of the patient. As you probably know, sometimes, the patients come in, and they are not in the best of moods. Sometimes, the patients are not in their right mind; such as dementia, they say all sorts of things to the nurses. It is not aimed at us; they don’t know what they are saying. We, as nurses, have to understand that they are not attacking us with their words. We just have to let those feelings go and roll off our back, not holding a grudge. I consider it a real blessing because I am one to let things go. A nurse needs to be able to be mentally healthy to process it and go on with life,” he said.
There is not a typical work day for Ronny. “Sometimes, we may see 50 patients and they are all fast-track. Those 50 patients may take a lot longer than we had planned, needing extra procedures, taking more time than we assumed. But then again, we might see those 50 patients, and each patient moving along quickly. In the ER, no one knows how the day will start or end. We never know how it will turn out,” he said.
Ronny’s biggest reward about his job is the fact that he is helping others. Not only is Ronny an excellent RN and paramedic, but he also teaches different classes at AllianceHealth Deaconess including PALS (pediatric advanced life support) and medical classes for orientation. “AllianceHealth Deaconess ER is one of the best ER’s I have worked at. We have good management here. I admire my director and supervisor and I have a lot of respect for my coworkers and the hard work that goes on here. I enjoy my job here and wouldn’t ‘t change anything,” Ronny said.