Finding A Rewarding Career | Amber’s Story

December 14, 2016

Amber Eickholt, Nurse Navigator Oncologist at Memorial Healthcare, recalls numerous difficulties following her uncle’s cancer diagnosis. He would ask her question after question, which she would answer as best she could. However, she couldn’t answer every question as she lacked the resources to figure out what was going on and what to do.

An especially trying time was when he returned from a biopsy looking paler than usual.

“I remember him coming home and looking at him and thinking, ‘gosh he’s pale and gosh his stomach,’” she says. “I was nervous enough to say we probably need to get this checked out but not so nervous enough where I wanted to call the physician.”

They wound up taking him to the emergency room. His vital signs were stable, he was alert, and his breathing was okay. Yet he continued to look pale and he complained of pain. Turns out, he was bleeding out in his stomach.

In any cancer journey, uncertainties can run rampant. There are many questions and unfortunately too often they remain unanswered. At Memorial Healthcare, part of Amber’s job is to help steer patients through their cancer journey.

 

 

“I get to be that person now, who patients can call, who families can call,” she says. “I don’t know answers all the time but I can say ‘let’s figure it out, let’s get this taken care of,’ and that’s awesome for me.”

She’s been a Nurse Navigator for two years now at Memorial Healthcare. As someone who grew up in a small town, she’s enthralled with the small town charm Memorial and its surrounding communities provide.

“I love knowing whom you are taking care of,” she says. “People know who you are, they ask about your kids. We work closely as a team and there’s a lot more togetherness. The small town feel brought me here and when I started working it was reaffirmed.”

She began her career at Memorial Healthcare working in the emergency room. Working in the emergency room instantly revealed to her the teamwork you find at Memorial.

“All the nurses know what it’s like and pitch in for each other,” she says. “There’s never a worry about who’s watching who cause we are such a team and so engrained to helping each other.”

However, when an opportunity opened up in oncology, she leapt at it. She refers to oncology as her calling. As Nurse Navigator, she finds herself in a unique position that isn’t present at every hospital. In the role she handles myriad responsibilities. She meets with patients, she assesses situations, she explains, she deftly navigates the path – wherever it may wind.

“You touch a lot of lives,” she says. “It’s very rewarding at the end of the day. I can say I helped so many people.”

Her role covers a broad range of responsibilities, including attending biopsies, providing education on medications, discussing side effects, expectations, and answering a barrage of questions that might come her way from a patient.

Between a rewarding role and reveling in Memorial’s family-oriented atmosphere, Amber feels no concerns.

“Everybody here treats all of our patients exactly the way they should be treated,” she says.

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