Throughout the month of February (Heart Month), we will be highlighting our staff and departments who play a vital role in cardiovascular care. Today, we’re sharing some Q&A with Rita Guzzell, a Registered Nurse in the Cardiac Catheterization Lab (or ‘Cath Lab’).
What does it take to be a nurse in the Cath Lab?
It takes dedication, adaptability, knowledge and critical thinking skills.
What is unique about your role?
My job is very rewarding because we get to see immediate results when patients undergo angioplasty. It is unique to be able to have such a drastic and positive impact on a patient’s condition.
What inspired you to work in the Cath Lab and in cardiac care?
I have been interested in cardiology for as long as I can remember. I’ve been a Registered Nurse for 31 years. Twenty of those were on the cardiovascular units at the McKellar Hospital and here at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre. I also did a cardiology fellowship with the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario (RNAO) on angioplasty care in 2007 and 2008. The Cath Lab was the next step in pursuing my interest in cardiac care.
How does your role impact patient care?
As a Cath Lab nurse, I provide health teaching and support the patient and their family.
On the concept of practice what you preach, do you have any personal tips on how to stay heart healthy?
Take the stairs! I also never park too close to places so that I have to walk more.
Any final thoughts?
It is great to be a member of this team!
*Editor’s note: Rita’s colleagues highlighted her for being hard-working, conscientious, caring, and very knowledgeable.