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Meghan Mitchell, RN

Inpatient cancer units

Meghan shares why The University of Kansas Health System is a great place for nurses and how teamwork and caring for patients keeps her coming back every day.

Q: What is a typical day like on the health system's inpatient cancer units?

Meghan: Every day starts at 7 a.m. with a report on all of our patients from the night shift, and then we check in on our patients and provide their daily medication or treatment needs. We spend the day taking care of our patients and any needs they may have throughout the day.

 

Q: Why do you work at The University of Kansas Health System?

Meghan: After graduating nursing school, I started a career in a small community hospital on a med/surg floor, in the city where I graduated. Then, when I decided I wanted to move back home to Kansas City, I was excited to find the opportunity to work as an oncology nurse at The University of Kansas Health System. Growing up in Kansas City, I had always wanted to work here. My goal has always been to be a nurse at The University of Kansas Health System.

 

Q: How does The University of Kansas Health System compare to other hospitals?

Meghan: Working at The University of Kansas Health System provides the opportunity to see first-hand the advancements in care, learn about the leading studies and have the ability to further my career. Those opportunities can only be found at large, academic medical centers, like The University of Kansas Health System.

Working here, I can see the latest cancer research in action and I'm able to provide care for some of the hardest cases. It's great to be able to care for those patients that need the high level of care only found at The University of Kansas Health System. I also get to work with amazing doctors and nurses who teach me so much.

 

Q: What has influenced and inspired you to become a bedside nurse?

Meghan: Growing up, I was always interested in science. My mother was a nursing tech, and she always wanted to go back to school and become a nurse. So her drive to become a nurse definitely influenced me. My mother put the idea in my head to go to nursing school. After shadowing a few people while in high school, I really enjoyed what nurses did every day. I considered other areas of medical care, but I really enjoy bedside nursing, being in the hospital and helping people.

 

Q: Explain why The University of Kansas Health System is a great place for nurses.

Meghan: The University of Kansas Health System values nurses and sees that our job is important. The health system does everything it can to make sure nurses can do their jobs and do it well. And that is important to me.

 

Q: Talk about the importance of having a good support system and teamwork.

Meghan: Some days can be busy. And, with treating very sick patients and getting connected to them, some days can be very emotional. Everyone on the unit goes through days where they need someone to fall back on. And it's nice to work here because we all understand what each other is going through and know that you can rely on one another for support. We all go through the same thing at some point in our careers. It helps to have good co-workers.

 

Q: What keeps you coming back every day?

Meghan: I'm often told by patients that you have to be a special person to be a nurse. But, really, seeing my patients fight is the reason I come back every day. They are so grateful and happy to be alive that they really inspire me to do my job every day.

 

Q: How do you and your co-workers go above and beyond for each other and for patients?

Meghan: My co-workers are awesome. They push me and inspire me to do a better job. Everyone I work with does their best every day and goes above and beyond for our patients every day. Even the little things, like one of my patients who wanted to video chat with family members on their phone but did not know how to do this. We took the time to set up the chat on their phone so they could speak with their family members.

Also, my co-workers ask if they can help me when they have available time, and no one sits down unless everyone sits down. If anyone has downtime, they are asking other nurses if they can help.

 

Q: How is academic medicine different from other hospital settings?

Meghan: Working here is a different dynamic – working at a teaching hospital with medical students, residents and attending doctors. It's something I really like about working here. It is interesting to listen as they learn. It also gives you a different take on how physicians start their careers. Something you don't see in other hospitals.

You also get to learn along with them or provide the nursing viewpoint on patient care. The residents are very respectful and open to the nurses' opinions on patient care.

We are an equal employment opportunity employer without regard to a person’s race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, ancestry, age (40 or older), disability, veteran status or genetic information.