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Serah’s story

May 6, 2021
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Commonwealth Care Alliance Nurse Serah's headshot

Although Serah Guilbe knew she wanted to be a nurse when she was in kindergarten, her career initially started on a different path. When she was in college, she studied accounting, but her heart wasn’t in it.

It wasn’t until 15 years later that she went back to school for nursing.

“Nursing is what I was meant to do. My heart is in it 100%.”

Serah was even more motivated about her career after learning that her late grandmother was also a nurse. “It makes me so happy to continue her legacy,” she says.

Today, Serah is a community registered nurse at CCA. Being a nurse during the COVID pandemic has been difficult, but Serah hasn’t let that stop her. In addition to joining the COVID-19 Field Response team, she is also a fit mask tester and a LifePod® ambassador. “I learnt so many skills from my peers and have learnt so much about myself as a nurse,” she says.

“I’m proud of my work as a nurse. It has built so much confidence in me knowing that I could have stayed home but instead I volunteered to help others.”

Determining members’ goals of care

The ability to make a difference in the lives of others is the most rewarding part of being a nurse, Serah says. Citing a Gallup poll that found nurses are the most trusted professionals (and have been for 18 years in a row), Serah says, “I’m truly humbled and proud of being a nurse.”

There have been some challenging moments though. After losing some members due to the pandemic, Serah has been working with her members on goals of care to identify what is most important to them. When one member passed away due to COVID-19 over the summer, Serah hoped that her family was able to honor her wishes. “I was glad because she had advance directives in place and that put me at ease,” she says. “Because of this incident, I vowed that during every visit, I will review advance directives with my members, so I know I have done my due diligence and that they get to spell out their healthcare decisions ahead of time.”

Going the extra mile

No matter the interaction, Serah is both a patient teacher and a willing student who is committed to providing exemplary care to CCA members, says Kimberly Bailey, a CCA licensed practical nurse.

“Recently, one of our members reported to us that she had nothing to eat and Serah cleared her schedule so the member could be seen urgently to determine if she was being neglected by her family and supports,” Kimberly says. The assessment of the member and family was both in-depth and culturally sensitive, Kimberly says, and just one example of how Serah is willing to go the extra mile for her members. 

When work gets stressful, Serah relies on her teammates and finds peace in meditation. “I liked that CCA provided a mindfulness program for the Field team and it was a safe space to air out frustrations and encourage one another,” she says. “We cried, we laughed, and we worked through challenging situations. But in the long run, we had each other.”

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