UPHS – Marquette Heroes | Amy Vilona, RN

What is your official title? ​ 

Registered Nurse in Pre-Admission Testing.

How did you end up in this department?

I was lucky enough to be able to get into an opening when there was one, and I love being here. I plan to be here forever. 

What was your inspiration for getting into healthcare? 

When I was a senior in high school, I was in a nurse internship program that was between Ishpeming High School and Bell Memorial at the time. Ever since I knew that was what I wanted to do; I wanted to help people. I liked everything about it, the atmosphere, taking care of the patients of all different age groups and that’s how it’s been ever since. I’m going on 18 years of being here.

One thing that I try to do is picture the patient as if it was my mom, dad, sister, or brother getting care; I try to treat them as if they are my own family. Everyone else does that too in our department because we want good results for the patients, and even though you are taking care of them at their weakest and most vulnerable points in their life, you want them to come out of it with a positive experience.

What is a typical day like for you?

I’ll come in and see what my assignment is and we have a daily huddle. We go over what sort of alerts and precautions to look out for, and then we get to calling and make sure everyone has everything in place to make sure their outpatient procedure goes off without a hitch. We make sure all the lab testing is there beforehand and research patient health histories and identify what patients need to make sure they are safe when they are here and have a positive outcome.

How has your role changed with the pandemic?

Yes, our department watches the COVID-19 tracker. We’re watching specifically endoscopy patients and any people coming in for procedures in the operating room. We make sure that those patients get contacted and receive a COVID test before coming in. We also schedule them to make sure they go to the right place in the appropriate amount of time and make sure we have prepared their chart before they come in before surgery. We’re tracking everyone. It’s a large amount of tracking, but it’s necessary to make sure everyone stays safe. 

What are some of your interests outside of work?

I just got a new puppy. She will be five months old at the end of July. I spend a lot of time with her, learning and watching her grow. I also enjoy spending time with family and at camp. Just relaxing and always enjoying life.

What is your favorite part about working at UPHS – Marquette?

This department is just wonderful. We have a small department, but there are over 250 years of experience amongst the team. Everyone has a great sense of humor and we all help each other. The day just flies by because everyone is there to help and everyone gets along. It’s amazing.

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