by Vickie Jenkins – Writer/Photographer
Cedar Ridge is specialized behavioral health treatment for children and adolescents, providing quality impatient treatment to help stabilize patients struggling with mental health issues.
One of the many specialized nurses at Cedar Ridge is Chris King RN, BSN, and ADON. Currently, Chris is half way through receiving his MSN in Nursing Leadership at OCU. Chris has been a nurse for nine years, working at different facilities in mental health. “I think it takes a special kind of person to work with patients that have mental health issues, and I can assure you that it is one of the most fulfilling jobs that I have ever had. To me, it just means they are unique individuals on a certain path that may be a little different from what we are used to,” Chris commented.
Chris has always had a heart for caring and taking care of others. “I had quite a few surgeries and a lengthy stay in the hospital when I was seven years old. Even at that age, I knew I wanted to be a nurse because they were so nice to me, even when I had to get a shot,” he laughed. ”I always admired the doctors and nurses that took care of me and I’m sure that had a big influence in my life. I have always enjoyed working with children of all ages and have a desire to help children and teens whenever I am able,” he added.
When asking Chris what the favorite part of his job was, he replied, “Since I am the director of nursing, I feel like I want to make the nurses jobs easier. I am always trying to take something good and making it even better,” he said with a smile. “Nurses have a tough job and anything I can do to improve their work with the small children or the teens is something I am going to set out to do. It makes for a smooth and productive work day. Sometimes, the smallest gesture can help a nurse in the biggest way.”
What qualities make a good nurse? “I think one of the most important qualities a nurse should have is compassion and empathy. If there is someone that doesn’t have these two things, they are going down the wrong path. Also, a nurse needs to be a good listener. If I can really listen to them, it gets them to open up and it allows them to gain their trust in me. It can make all the difference in the world,” Chris commented.
“One thing I want to emphasize about Cedar Ridge Behavioral Hospital is the excellent care that is given to the children here. We treat children, age’s five to twelve plus adolescents twelve to seventeen, acute and residential with psychiatric disorders. Most of the children and teens have had a traumatic experience and are dealing with so much. Each person that comes in here has their own story. Our programs give a stable, structured environment to allow them to successfully complete treatments,” Chris said. “There are therapists, physicians and nurses here, 24-7. They all work hard, trying to gain the trust that that the individuals need. Teamwork is so important to all of us. We work together has a team. Teamwork makes any job run smoother, giving a daily boost of confidence to others. We are here to help,” Chris added.
If you were to give advice to someone going into the medical field, what would you tell them? “I would tell them to keep be open minded about it. It will be hard work and you will need to study hard but it will be the most rewarding job you will ever have. Going into nursing, you have so many opportunities and so many different fields you can go with. Just be sure that you have a true passion for taking care of others. Being a nurse also requires patience. Hang in there!” Chris commented.
To know Chris a little better his hobbies include working out, hiking and hanging out with his friends. Chris is engaged and he has a five year old son, Maddix. When asking Chris to describe himself, he said, “I am open-minded and communicate well with others. I am happy, easy-going, a hard worker and very flexible with my time. My motivation comes from a drive to help others and being able to serve as a nurse. To sum up my life in one word, I would have to say…Progressive.”
NIGHT SHIFT NURSES NEEDED!
Excellent Benefit Package Provided
Licensed Nurses to work with our special needs pediatric patients 0-21 years of age. Our campus consists of 6 rehab hospital units with 6 pediatric patients in each unit. Nurses will monitor assigned hospital unit to ensure quality of patients’ health and the care that is given by Direct Care staff.
· Must have current OK Drivers License
· Must be able to lift 25 lbs