Growing Into the Role
Kathy Mullen, RNC, CMSRN
Having been a certified medical-surgical (med-surg) registered nurse for 35 years, Kathy Mullen, RNC, CMSRN, says every day provides her with the opportunity to learn something new. “I’m a lifelong learner,” she states. “I work with a variety of different doctors and specialists, and it just keeps things interesting and fresh.”
Here Mullen answers a few questions about her profession:
Q: What is your favorite part of being a medsurg nurse?
A: I really like working with my coworkers, and I like taking care of people — being able to go in and answer a question or brighten up someone’s day or doing something that makes a difference for them.
Q: What is your favorite patient memory?
A: When I first started working here our floor was the infectious disease floor so we had most of the AIDS patients, and that was the beginning of the AIDS crisis. I have a group of memories of the patients I took care of then. They became like family. Being able to take care of them and reassure them, I treated them like brothers or sisters, and to have that kind of a relationship with a patient to me is kind of special.
Q: In what ways do you feel Inova has supported your nursing career?
A: I had one manager for 22 years and she was very proactive with the staff and I think she recognized in me the ability to be a leader. So she encouraged me to become an RN3, and then she encouraged me to advance on the clinical ladder and then I became the chairperson of the clinical ladder.
Q: What opportunities do you see as an Inova nurse?
A: There are lots of opportunities at Inova. You have the opportunity for schooling, you have the opportunity to move up or you have the opportunity to stay a bedside nurse if that’s what you choose to do. No one can say they didn’t have the opportunity to try something new here. I’ve given a lot to Inova and it’s given back.