Our clinics remain open today, however, there may be some delays due to outages. Our WIC offices are also still experiencing some delays so clients may experience longer than normal wait times to receive services at our locations.

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National Nurses’ Week 2020

Public health nurses hold a vital role in the prevention of disease and help to promote community health and safety.

National Nurses’ Week begins each year on May 6th and ends on May 12th, Florence Nightingale’s birthday. Here are ways Tulsa Health Department’s public health nurses are serving the Tulsa community.

Lindsey Hammond, BSN, RN

Title: Registered Nurse, Immunizations 

What made you become a nurse: I wanted to help people. Nurses are often there in the best and worst moments of people’s lives and have the opportunity to make a difference. 

Role at THD: I am an immunization nurse at THD. I administer vaccines to the public and advocate for immunizations. 

What makes you proud to be a public health nurse: The work as a public health nurse does not only affect the client, but also the whole community and helps to improve health equity. I love knowing that what I do every day makes an impact on my community.

 

 

 

Rachael Luther, BSN, RN

Title: Public Health Nurse, Immunizations 

What made you become a nurse: I love both the art and the science of being a nurse. Having medical and technical knowledge while also being able to communicate and serve others is the special part of my profession. 

Role at THD: I provide health services to my community, preventing disease primarily through my role as an immunizations nurse. I educate my clients and my community about staying healthy and also connect people to services they may need. During the pandemic response, I have been helping schedule and organize the drive-thru testing sites, working with a dedicated and dynamic team. 

What makes you proud to be a public health nurse: Public health is an exciting and big-picture kind of nursing specialty. I am a fifth generation Tulsan, proud to be serving my city helping to keep Tulsans strong. We are a resilient city, and any chance I can get to help someone make healthier decisions or get the care they need strengthens us all as a community. I do my part as a public health nurse, just as every Tulsan does their part to participate in making this a great city.

 

Angela McConnell, RN

Title: Public Health Nurse, Communicable Disease Control 

What made you become a nurse: As a result of several challenging life experiences, I developed a desire to be of service and help others in need. During my pre-teen young adult years, I underwent various medical procedures. To this day, I will never forget one particular nurse who stood out for her patience, kindness and excellent care. I remember feeling disappointed when another nurse showed up to care for me instead of her. During one of my appointments I asked her, “What do I have to do to be able to do this job?” I was so eager to learn.  As result of my experience as a patient, I became interested in working in the health care profession. 

Role at THD: I provide STD screening to teens and adults at the Tulsa Health Department. When a patient presents with symptoms, has tested positive for an STD or is a contact to someone who has, I provide treatment.  I educate my patients about various STDS and promote sexual health through client-centered counseling.

What makes you proud to be a public health nurse: I have always been passionate about public health services because they impact the health of not only individuals but also their families and the community at large. Throughout my life, I have lived in areas where the health and well-being of the community were adversely impacted by food insecurity, lack of access to healthy and fresh food and substandard housing, educational opportunities and healthcare.  I am painfully aware of the health disparities and higher mortality rates among people of color and that racism itself is a threat to both personal and public health. As an African American female, these factors not only directly affect my family and me, but also the community in which I live. I have long been determined to use the knowledge and wisdom I have gained from my sometimes difficult life experiences to help others. I am proud to be a public health nurse knowing that the education and care I provide can potentially impact someone else’s life and my community for the better. As a public health nurse, I care for those who might not otherwise be able to obtain healthcare services, I am glad I can help fill in that gap and when I can’t, I can provide appropriate referrals. It gives me great fulfillment knowing that I can lift weight off of someone else’s shoulders, show compassion and provide quality care to those who feel vulnerable, sad and sometimes undeserving of care. I want to be that person who they will remember just as I remember that nurse so long ago who showed me how she cared.

 

 

Katie Moore, BSN, RN

Title: Children First Public Health Nurse, Preventative Health Services

What made you become a nurse: I knew from a young age I wanted to be a nurse. I always loved caring for my family when they were sick and just knew I wanted to care for people, especially babies.

Role at THD: I work in the Children First program doing home visits for first-time mothers. We have such a unique role as we are able to build a relationship with our clients and their family. Our visits take place from early in pregnancy and most will continue in the program until “graduation” when their child turns 2. We are able to provide education, support and referrals and walk next to them as they navigate the road to motherhood.

What makes you proud to be a public health nurse: Being a public health nurse was a change in career path for me but I am so thankful I was led here. Public health is an often overlooked part of nursing but is so important and influential for the families of Tulsa. Children First, along with THD, are positive beacons in the community. I am proud to say I am a part of this daily mission.

 

 

Lacey New, BSN, RN

Title: Public Health Nurse, Family Planning

What made you become a nurse: I wanted to be a nurse in high school when my grandmother was ill at home and had home health nurses see her a few times a week. They treated her with such kindness and compassion. They always made her smile and got to know her as a person and not just as their patient.  I would sometimes get to be there for the visit and the nurse would include me and show me how to help my grandmother with her nebulizer and other treatments. I remember thinking I want to be like that. I want to make a difference the way she did to my family.

Role at THD: I work in the family planning department as a clinical nurse. We offer STD testing, annual well woman’s exams and contraception if desired. 

What makes you proud to be a public health nurse: It makes me feel proud to work at an organization that truly cares and advocates for the community, especially now in these uncertain times. THD has been a constant source of dependable information and resources for the community to rely on. THD is also a great team – I have seen so many people even from different programs coming together to offer a helping hand and work together.

 

 

Jamie Thawng, MSN, RN

Title: Tuberculosis Supervisor, Preventative Health Services

What made you become a nurse: Although I followed in the footsteps of my favorite aunt who is a nurse, I feel that nursing is my “calling.” I have always had the burning desire to help the lost, sick and hurting. As a public health nurse, I know that nursing is a platform for changing the world one patient at a time. 

Role at THD: My role at THD is to be a leader. I believe in leading by example, and I truly feel that exhibiting characteristics like compassion, genuineness and integrity creates a positive atmosphere that cultivates optimal patient care. 

What makes you proud to be a public health nurse: I am proud to be a public health nurse because caring for each TB patient creates a “ripple-effect” and impacts the community, state and even the world.

 

 

Shariah Walker, BSN, RN

Title: Public Health Nurse, North Tulsa Clinic

What made you become a nurse: I love helping others, of course! But forming connected client experiences so the client can be more engaged in their healthcare is was what drove me to nursing.

Role at THD: My role at THD includes providing STD testing/treatment, applying knowledge of birth control methods, administering immunizations and tuberculosis skin tests, and supporting public health emergency operations.

What makes you proud to be a public health nurse: Serving my community and being a resource, especially in North Tulsa, makes me proud to be a Public Health Nurse. If I can make a positive impact in one person’s life at THD, my workday duty is fulfilled.

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