Nurses are currently the largest part of the healthcare workforce. However, according to a survey conducted by AMN Healthcare Services Inc, one-third of nurses in the United States are considering leaving their profession behind.
For many, the mental and physical toll of direct patient care during the COVID-19 pandemic has been extremely overwhelming. The pandemic has left nurses feeling helpless, unsupported, overworked and, in some cases, like a patient themselves.
Like many nurses, Vytalize Health’s Director of Priority Care Jessica Bodry has an inherent passion to help others. It was this overwhelming need to advocate for patients and change lives for the better that started Jessica on her path to the profession. Throughout her nursing career, she gained diverse experience in various fields, including long-term care, psychiatric nursing, and working with patients battling chemical dependencies. She also spent a significant portion of her career in family medicine, where she cherished the opportunity to build long-term relationships with her patients and their families.
As her journey continued, Jessica ventured into critical care, home health, and case management, and eventually found her calling in nursing management, though she never imagined leaving direct patient care behind.
In her current role, Jessica oversees and manages the overall operations of Vytalize’s Priority Care department which includes developing and implementing clinical policies and protocols, ensuring excellent patient care, coordinating staffing and scheduling, managing resources, and monitoring quality standards. This allows her to have a meaningful impact on patient outcomes on a larger scale. She utilizes her skills and expertise to lead and inspire fellow nurses, while also playing a pivotal role in shaping the delivery of care.
For Jessica, this ability to provide mentorship is a huge part of her why, saying that her team is why she gets up every day. Their mutual respect and ability to collaborate makes things better for Vytalize’s most vulnerable patients who lack resources like money, transportation, and emotional support from loved ones they may have lost.
Jessica’s passion for improving the lives of patients is only matched by her passion for empowering nurses. As nurses continue to leave the profession, she urges them to embrace a curious mindset, seek mentorship, invest in continuous education, build strong relationships, advocate for their patients, and be open to leadership opportunities that may not be at the bedside. For nurses, advocating for their patients is second nature. However, reflecting on the lessons Jessica learned early on, she notes that it’s crucial for nurses to advocate for themselves. She advocates for balance because a workload that does not include it will not allow for quality patient care.
A fulfilling and meaningful career in nursing is still attainable. The breadth of fields and flexibility that the profession offers, makes it possible to have a lasting impact on people's lives whether at the bedside or in an office, or even remotely from your home at a company like Vytalize.