“Every day I try to inspire my patients, but often I find they end up inspiring me.”
With 23 years on the job, 18 of those at Aurora BayCare Medical Center in Green Bay, one would think Jodi Lund, a phlebotomist, has seen and learned it all. But she says the pandemic has actually been an ongoing journey of learning for her.
“Every day I try to inspire my patients, but often I find they end up inspiring me,” Lund said. “When I walk into a room and see the strength and determination from some of these patients fighting COVID-19, it truly inspires me to never give up on them, my other patients, my coworkers, or the personal goals I have for myself.”
Lund is fighting on the frontlines in the battle against COVID-19, and although she is modest about the important work she does, she plays a critical role in collecting blood samples from patients for further medical testing.
“I may not be a nurse, but it is still my job to love and respect my patients,” Lund explains. “My time with the patient can be brief, but I love getting to know them and building good rapport. I love the challenge that this job brings.”
Lund attributes her desire to go into the medical field 23 years ago to her father. She, along with her sister and mother, took care of her father during his 11-year battle with Alzheimer’s before he went into a nursing home. This experience is what ultimately what drove her to be a health care worker.
Despite the difficulties of working in healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic, Lund said fighting it made her team at Aurora BayCare stronger. When a major surge hit, there were days she struggled and cried, questioning her own abilities and sometimes even her own sanity. But she rose to the challenge with the help of her coworkers.
“They helped teach me that my strength as a phlebotomist is not determined by one bad shift, by several difficult draws, or even my job during a pandemic,” she said. “Our job as a team is to stand together, carry each other’s burdens on bad days, and just be there for one another.
“It’s absolutely amazing how something that’s supposed to keep us apart, has brought us even closer together,” she said.
COVID-19 has also made a huge impact on Lund’s life outside of work, and she has had to make significant adjustments in her life. She no longer wears fun scrubs but instead wears the blue surgical scrubs, so she doesn’t bring anything home on her clothes. The first thing she does when she gets home is head for the shower. And she’s spent most of 2020 alone to social distance herself and keep her family safe. She said she’s most looking forward to hugging her mother when she is finally vaccinated. In the meantime, she encourages the community to continue combating the pandemic by adhering to safety recommendations.
“We have been here fighting for you. We are worn out, so we need you to help us and to do your part,” she said. “Mask up, keep your distance if you have to be out, and wash/sanitize those hands!”
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health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Aurora Health sites, which also includes freelance or intern writers.