Marcy Cameron Career Spotlight
Marcy Cameron is a Registered Nurse who practices out of the Dr. F.H. Wigmore Regional Hospital in Moose Jaw. Check out her experience working as a Registered Nurse for the Saskatchewan Health Authority:
What do you do as a Registered Nurse (RN) in the Dr. F.H. Wigmore Regional Hospital?
“As a RN in the Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit, a typical day consists of assessing patients, providing patient care and treatment, educating patients regarding their health and managing their health condition, and referring patients and providing them resources for special care. An example of the treatment I provide is medicine administration. We also do a daily huddle with the healthcare team to discuss any new announcements, educational opportunities, safety updates, etc. to help start the shift."
How is your work-life balance as a Registered Nurse?
“For 19 years, I have done full time shift work which includes nights and weekends, so the work-life balance is different compared to individuals who work Monday to Friday 9:00am to 5:00pm. It can be challenging at times accommodating personal plans and scheduling around shift work. To get around the challenges, I focused on working night shifts to maintain a consistent internal clock and this did help balance my personal life. A perk of shift work is that you can get a larger amount of days off in a row compared to the typical Monday to Friday schedule; however, your schedule is more random so you need to plan more when working in shifts. In my current role, I work as a Clinical Resource Nurse Monday to Thursday and this provides me a better work-life balance for me and my family. RNs primarily work in shifts but there are opportunities with the Saskatchewan Health Authority that may provide you the opportunity to work a more consistent schedule."
Have you always wanted to become a Registered Nurse? Please provide more details on your career path to becoming a Registered Nurse.
“I have been exposed to nurses my whole life. My great aunt and aunt were really involved in my life growing up and they were both nurses. My mom even bought me a toy doctors kit and I would pretend to take her blood pressure and listen to her heart. Honestly, nursing is what I have always wanted to do and I never had a thought about pursuing another career path. Ever since I could remember, I always felt that nursing was in my blood so there was no changing my plans to become a Registered Nurse. Growing up in southwest Saskatchewan near the Alberta border, I completed my Registered Nursing program in Medicine Hat College and worked as a health care aid (also know as Continuing Care Assistant) in Maple Creek. After completing my program, I accepted a job in Moose Jaw and have been here ever since."
Are there opportunities to further your career as a Registered Nurse with the Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA)?
“Absolutely! There are endless opportunities for RNs as it is so holistic and there are so many aspects to nursing that you can choose any pathway once you are licensed. There are so many options to further your education, for example, I could go back to school and achieve my masters in nursing to move into more management and leadership roles or can even teach the next generation of nurses. I could also become a Nurse Practitioner and provide a even broader scope of healthcare services in a clinical setting (similar to a physician). You will never feel stuck as a RN as there are so many different areas you can progress your career and skills in and the SHA can provide you support to pursue specialized training. I took the Critical Care Nursing course in 2021 in order to work in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in Moose Jaw. The SHA provided support for me to take the course as well incentives to work as a Critical Care Nurse. I am currently on a term position as a Clinical Resource Nurse, and my situation is an example of how RNs can help innovate our healthcare system to create new roles to support nursing units. The SHA is always innovating the healthcare system to make it better which opens up the opportunities for RNs and other disciplines to move into new roles. No matter what area you work in, you will always have support to further your education, improve your skills and move into new roles to progress your career as a nurse."
Do you have any advice for students looking to pursue a career as a Registered Nurse?
“Being a RN is a very challenging profession that can take a toll on your health both physically and mentally; however, it can be very rewarding. When you can help someone and make their life a little bit better in sometimes their hardest moments, it can be very rewarding. Put it this way, as a nurse, somebody's life will be in your hands someday so study like it. Nursing is not for the faint of heart. If this is the route a student wants to take then they need to go all in and try to apply and learn as much as they can in order to prepare themselves for a career in nursing."
What about advice for new Registered Nurse graduates?
“My best advice to new graduates is to ask lots of questions and to find a mentor that you admire and mimic their career after. You will not be able to figure out everything on your own so having a strong support system is very important when starting out your career. Another good piece of advice is starting your career as Grad Nurse before you write your licensing exam so that you can get the process started. Even in a casual position, you can start building your seniority in the union, build a solid foundation for the job and learn directly from your preceptor and other coworkers."
Any specialty areas that are in demand for nursing?
“Registered Nursing is in demand for all areas. Special areas like Critical Care Nursing are also in demand so I recommend RNs growing their career and skills by completing courses. This will ultimately open even more doors for you and make you a better nurse. Overall, there are opportunities for RNs in all areas of practice which really provides you the opportunity to pursue what you want."
What is the number one thing you love about being a Registered Nurse?
“I ultimately love caring for patients and their families. Usually the people we encounter on a daily basis are not at their best. They are either in pain, at a peak crisis point in their life or have a loved one in the hospital when they come to visit us and if I can make their life better in anyway it is super rewarding. When someone is in severe pain and you are able to assist them in treating their pain and seeing them walk out in relief. Even educating patients and provide resources for self-care so they can manage their health on their own at home. It is all very rewarding and the feeling is unmatched compared to other professions and it is what makes nursing the best career choice!"