Caring for patients and each other at Providence Swedish in the South Puget Sound
We recently spoke with Suzie Scott, Chief Nursing Officer for Providence Swedish South Puget Sound, who’s responsible for the delivery of nursing care at Providence St. Peter Hospital and Providence Centralia Hospital. Here’s what she had to say about her path to Providence Swedish, what it’s like working here, and the genuine care her team and leaders have for each other.
Path to Providence Swedish
Caregivers join us from many places; Suzie started out in the army. Says Suzie, “I spent 30 years as an Army Nurse Corp officer, before retiring from the Army. I was looking for an organization whose mission and values really resonated with me, and I found that in Providence.”
Suzie says she feels cared for here. “Providence, as an employer, takes care of its caregivers. We are not just staff members. We are not just employees. We are caregivers. It’s in our title and it’s in our philosophy in how we approach the needs of those who work here. There is a genuine sense of caring and compassion, not just for our patients, but for our caregivers as well.”
Caring for patients and each other
Suzie says her team and coworkers are what makes her go home smiling each day. “I walk in the units and watch the genuine care and compassion toward our patients and toward each other,” says Suzie. “And that just brings joy. It makes it easy to go home each day knowing that I work with a team that values each other and values the work that they do. Every day the one thing that is top of their mind is, ‘What can I do for my patients?’ And my leaders look at, ‘What can I do to take care of my caregivers?’”
Everyone is valued here
Suzie says her team and leaders show that they value one another in many ways. The first agenda item in daily huddles is caregiver appreciation, when the team talks about positive things that happened recently and who to thank.
Other ways both the team and leaders show they value each other is through regular recognition and heartfelt thank you notes on the bulletin boards throughout the hospitals. Beyond that, everyone has each other’s backs. Says Suzie, “Everybody’s always looking out for each other, saying, ‘Hey, I’ve got an extra set of hands. Let me see how I can help out my fellow caregivers.”
Grow in your career with us
Suzie says there are many ways to grow in your career with Providence Swedish. “No matter at what point in your career you join the Providence Swedish team, we are focused on making sure that there are opportunities for professional development. So, if this is your first job, we are focusing on what the next steps are for you, and developing a ladder for you to be able to aspire to do whatever it is you desire. If that’s going back to school to get certification, or licensure or a degree, we have pathways to be able to get you there. If you’re coming in mid-career and looking for a leadership position, we help you hone your skills as a leader.”
For nurses just starting in their careers, “Providence Swedish has a nationally recognized residency program for new graduates that is certified through the American Nurses Credential Center,” says Suzie. “What that certification shows is that we have a residency program that meets the highest standards of quality to be able to provide the best experience for new nurses.”
For those more established in their career, Suzie touts the Providence Swedish fellowship program. “It adheres to the same standards as our ANCC certified residency program. So, if we have nurses who have spent a year, or more, in practice, but want to switch specialties, we can afford them the opportunity to develop new skills in a new clinical practice area.”
All are welcome here
Providence Swedish prioritizes diversity, equity and inclusivity and creating a space for all caregivers. Says Suzie, “The inclusivity in our ministries starts at onboarding. We strive to ensure that we are meeting the needs of our caregivers before they even arrive. And then, upon arrival, the first thing that we talk about is our mission and vision and how our caregivers can be engaged and part of our environment. In the South Puget Sound region, they’re invited to join a diversity, equity and inclusion core council of caregivers that’s focused on making sure that we are taking care of our caregivers in an inclusive way.”
Spotlight on nursing at St. Peter Hospital in Olympia
Says Suzie, “Providence St. Peter Hospital is special in that we are a Magnet designated hospital, meaning that the nursing care that we deliver has been recognized nationally for the high quality of care that we deliver, for the shared governance approach we take to making decisions about the nursing care that we deliver and about the quality of the patient care experience.”
Shared governance is a leadership philosophy and process where the caregivers delivering the care at the bedside are involved and engaged in the decision-making process for how we deliver that care. Suzie says, “There’s no one better to be making decisions about policies, procedures and processes, and using evidence-based practice to design the care delivery methods that we use, than our nurses.”
Why Providence Swedish?
There are many places to pursue a nursing career, but at the end of the day, what makes Suzie stay at Providence Swedish are the people. She says, “It’s the support and compassion. It’s the teamwork. All of us focus together on taking care of our patients and providing quality care.”
Interested in joining our nursing team? See all open roles.