Labor & Delivery, Terri Smith, Huntington Hospital
Leading the Family Birth Center on the night shift
Terri Smith, RNC
Patient Flow Coordinator, Inpatient Obstetrics
Huntington Hospital Pasadena
Tell us about the arc of your nursing career journey and how you landed where you are now.
My journey really began during the birth of my first baby. Having never been a patient in a hospital before that, I had no idea that this world even existed!
I fell in love with my new baby boy, and also with the idea that the labor & delivery team had the privilege of sharing such a personal and intimate moment in a total stranger’s life. I was enamored with the experience and knew then that I had to be a part of this world.
When I graduated from nursing school in 1999, I first worked as a medical-surgical nurse, but after a year, I moved into perinatal nursing and trained for my dream job. I had a vision of what L&D nursing was like, and I just had to be a part of it. I couldn’t imagine myself doing anything but this. I was hired at Huntington Hospital in October 2001 and have worked here ever since.
How did your current role come about?
About four years into my career here at Huntington, the opportunity arose for me to become a leader on the unit, and I enthusiastically accepted. My manager at the time must have seen my leadership qualities and took a chance on a newer nurse, and I am so glad that she did. I really admired the charge nurses when I was new to the team, and I continue to have the pleasure of working beside some of them today.
What are your responsibilities in this position?
I am the patient flow coordinator, which is very similar to a charge nurse. I am responsible for coordinating all of the patient flow operations through the antepartum, intrapartum and postpartum periods. There are many daily tasks that must be accomplished in order to maintain a safe and efficient work environment.