ICU Nursing Supervisor, Lyrose Ortiz, Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital
Helping critical care nurses reach their full potential
Please tell us about the arc of your nursing career.
I received my BSN in 1995. It was my passion. My ultimate goal was to be a heart nurse. I worked medical-surgical telemetry and then worked my way up to ICU. After a great deal of education and training, I reached my goal and had the amazing opportunity to take care of open heart patients intraoperatively.
When I was appointed as a relief ICU charge nurse, I began to consider climbing the clinical ladder. So, when Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital (MLKCH) first opened in 2015, I took a leap of faith and applied for an ICU clinical supervisor position, which they offered me. Working here has been a wonderful experience. Employees from administration to environmental services treat everyone like family.
We’re a true team that works together to build a hospital that serves a less-fortunate patient population. When I report to work, I know that I’m truly home.
What attracted you to working in the ICU?
When I observed the assertiveness and skill of highly experienced ICU/CCU nurses, I knew I wanted to be one of them. It takes a great deal of skill, personal discipline and compassion to serve as a critical care nurse, and I think my personality simply fit the profile.
Our hospital opened in 2015, which means that everything is pretty new and we’re still in the process of building our team. When I came here, I brought years of nursing experience and training that I’ve been able to utilize to build and develop a strong ICU night shift team. I’m pleased to see us working together and helping each other throughout our shifts. It feels rewarding to see us all grow and thrive.
As a clinical nurse supervisor of the ICU, what are your responsibilities?
My main job is to make sure that the unit is running smoothly. I help plan, coordinate and evaluate unit activities and ensure that we have the resources to carry out our nursing responsibilities. I’m thrilled that we have resource/ break RNs who help relieve our hardworking nurses — especially those nurses caring for highly critical patients — for breaks and meals.