Springfield Hospital Welcomes Noreen Caldwell, RNC, BSN, MSHA
A 20-year nursing veteran, Noreen Caldwell, RNC, BSN, MSHA, was drawn to neonatal intensive care from the start. As a staff nurse at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, she worked in the NICU, assisted in the cardiac catheterization laboratory and served as a neonatal transport nurse. “I enjoy the intensity of critical care,” relates Caldwell, a member of the Neonatal Nurses Association. “And it is so rewarding when families bring their babies back to visit and they are healthy and happy.”
Caldwell’s next assignment was halfway around the world, where she assisted in the startup of a Level II intensive care nursery at Tawam Hospital in Abu Dhabi. “During the oil boom of the eighties, many new hospitals were being built in the UAE,” she explains. “The hospitals were completely staffed by ex-patriots since the country was so wealthy that most people didn’t have to work.”
Intrigued by the opportunity to experience a different culture, Caldwell accepted a two-year contract with a professional healthcare staffing company.
“Although it was challenging to be a woman in the Middle East, it was a great learning experience,” says Caldwell, who lived on a compound with other Western women and quickly learned to adapt to local customs. “Women traveled in public only in groups,” she relates. “We had a curfew and were not allowed to drive, so we traveled in company sponsored vehicles. We wore slacks or skirts that were at least ankle length, and we kept our necks covered. The cultural differences were dramatic.”
When Caldwell returned to the U.S. in 1982, she joined Crozer-Chester Medical Center as a nurse manager with a big, new challenge: starting up the hospital’s intensive care nursery. “We started from scratch, ordering all the equipment and supplies, and making sure that the entire staff of 40 received training,” says Caldwell, who also served as chair of Crozer’s Quality Assurance Committee.
Ten years ago, Caldwell took on the role of clinical educator at Crozer where she organized programs to fulfill education and certification requirements for staff nurses in intensive care, pediatrics, maternity and labor and delivery.
Now in her new role as Springfield Hospital’s new administrative director of Nursing and Clinical Support Services, Caldwell looks forward to continuing the journey toward Magnet™ designation and working with the nursing staff to ensure that every patient receives the highest quality care. “Nurses can make a big difference in the patient’s experience by looking at the whole person and considering physical and spiritual needs as well as the cultural influences that affect them. Our nurses do a wonderful job at this. Achieving Magnet status will be a great reward for the hard work they are doing every day."