The nuns at Hilda’s Catholic high school were the first to realize she was meant to be a nurse. Still, despite their suggestions that she apply to nursing school, Hilda didn’t choose it right away. “At 17 years of age, many factors come into play, which clouded my decision,” Hilda says. “I did not realize then that nursing was a calling.”
It was only years later, when Hilda was working in the admissions department of a hospital, that she began to realize the sisters had been onto something. She was often asked to interpret or otherwise assist in various clinical scenarios, and being able to help resonated for her.
“I knew then, as I do now, that I could make a difference in the world through nursing—a compassionate, passionate, purposeful calling,” Hilda says. “The sisters were right.”
That calling led Hilda to nursing school, and eventually to CCA, where she has been a mobile RN care partner for over 10 years. “Her reputation as a skilled and compassionate nurse is well-established in the community,” says Christina Camara, manager of clinical care partnership. “Members, families, and primary care providers all request her by name.”
As a bilingual nurse, Hilda helps her Spanish-speaking members navigate the complex healthcare system. She educates members and caregivers in the home—taking the extra time to help them understand their conditions and the medications, diet, and lifestyle modifications that will give them the best treatment. “She develops a rapport with members by meeting them where they are and works collaboratively with them to reach their goals,” Christina says. “She is a strong advocate for her members and helps teach them how to advocate for themselves.”
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Hilda has felt her calling strongly. “Coronavirus came in as an invisible acute attack on society,” she says. “My first instinct was to put on the full armor and run out and save as many as I can from this.”
However, Hilda realized she wouldn’t be able to face the pandemic alone. “What I have learned, not only during the coronavirus pandemic, but in the health field in general, is that it takes a multidisciplinary team force to make a difference and that team includes patients, their families and caregivers,” she says. Hilda is happy to be among what she thinks of as an army of compassionate carers, doing everything she can to fight for the health of her members.
This story was originally published on May 7, 2020.