Meet the Clinician - Cathy Anderson

I’m thrilled to have recently joined Ascom. Becoming a nurse was one of the best life decisions. I obtained a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and later obtained a master’s in organizational leadership. While I have adult clinical experience, Neonatal Intensive Care has always been my passion clinically.

April 12, 2024

What is most satisfying about your job on the clinical team?

As a new team member, it’s been such a thrill to join a team that has been so welcoming and receptive. I love the opportunity to provide value internally to the Ascom team and customer leadership teams.

Describe your most successful project – what were the challenges in achieving it and how did you overcome them?

Looking back, my most successful and rewarding projects have been new, unchartered initiatives. While scary and stressful, because there is not a path to follow, the projects involved a customer problem, and being open and creative in solving the issue.

The most recent project involved working with a CEO for a long-term acute care hospital.

First, the CEO was new to healthcare, non-clinical but highly skilled and knowledgeable related to data. He was at a loss with poor HCAHPS scores and asked for assistance understanding the clinical environment, and how the data was being derived. The challenge is the project took time due to the level break down the clinical workflow, engage staff, and NOT make assumptions of what the issue was. The challenge is not to attempt to identify and resolve every issue at the same time. This becomes overwhelming and frequently no issue is resolved. Staff become disillusioned and resistant to participation in future initiatives. The CEO was a great partner to work on this initiative with.

What three things do you think will be important in changing the way nurses work/healthcare operates in the future?

I love being a nurse and the healthcare industry. I do get on my soapbox about the issue of practicing the way we always have. The key to change and enhance practice are very simple:

  •  Engagement - We all need to understand the ‘why’, which then leads staff/teams to commit to creating change.

  • Interoperability - Technology of course provides such great tools to provide care, understand patient status, etc. So much technology has been added to the healthcare environment, and much of the technology is decentralized leaving users to struggle with ‘connecting the dots.’

  •  Integration of Analytics - Data is king. There are billions of data points being produced in hospital settings every second. Data around operations and patient care provide value that was not previously known. Turning the data into actionable analytics, and then using the analytics for clinical decisions will change hospital operations and patient outcomes.

Share a fun fact about yourself.

Here’s some experience not on my resume.

Total Hip Surgery – I watched total hip surgery on a 88 year old woman. It’s like watching a construction worker. No wonder patients are so sore after surgery.

Transport Neonatal Nurse – I made multiple ambulance runs on Detroit Interstates.

How has your clinical background helped you in your role today?

I literally have been a member of the healthcare world from the age of 15, working as a nurse assistant, nurse tech and then a RN. While this may seem unimportant, these experiences provided an understanding and perspective from each of these roles of caring for patients. I have not forgotten each experience.

My career has also provided the privilege to practice in diverse and creative settings including at the patient bedside, managing a NICU, consulting, technical education and implementation and customer relationship management. Not only have these experiences allowed me to ‘see’ from difference perspectives, but each experience also added skillsets that contribute to the clinical role with Ascom.

What do you wish you knew in your earlier career that you know now?

Do not make assumptions about people or situations. People interpret and respond to circumstances based on their own life experiences and filters. Personally, or professionally, it is important to try to understand others’ perspectives. Listen more than you speak, and say yes.


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