VM HEALTH NETWORK AT CVPH- OUTPATIENT CLINICAL NURSE SUPERVISOR
Hometown: Westport, New York Age 35
Education: Westport High School, Clinton Community College, SUNY Plattsburgh
Community Involvement: Project Prom, Community Narcan Training, Adirondacks Account- able Care Organizations Health Committee, Cross Fit Level One Certification
When Ashley Sherman welcomed this SB writer into her home, she had her new baby in her arms and her computer open on the dining room table. Now a mother of two, she said with a giggle, “I wonder how my mother managed seven kids.”
Ashley is not afraid of a challenge. While Clinical Operations Supervisor in the Emergency Department (ED) at CVPH she focused on decreasing the mortality rate for sepsis in the hospital and improving bed occupancy time in the ED from
76 minutes to 50 minutes for patients being admitted to the hospital. In collaboration with the CVPH foundation and the ED staff she worked to transition two treatment rooms into pediatric friendly environments.
Ashley identified the best part of her job as seeing a positive healthy outcome for the patient. “I have seen an individual with a very bad opiate overdose come to our ED, go into rehab that very day and come back two years later to tell us about it. The hardest part is dealing with a pediatric death and helping families with the grieving process.”
When asked what the number one issue she would like to emphasize to the community, Ashley didn’t hesitate. “People need to ask questions. Healthcare is changing and it is and should be patient centered. Patients need to advocate for themselves. I see Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and obesity as two of the main challenges in our area that need to be addressed.”
What are you doing to make a difference in your profession?
As a nurse, there is exponential value for continuous learning and a need to evolve with healthcare. Being a nurse for 14 years, I’ve learned that each individual nurse has a vital impact on patients and their overall wellbeing. My role is to provide and encourage an environment for clinical staff to engage in the experiences they need to treat patients and grow in their careers.
What are you doing to make a difference in your community?
In my tenure in the CVPH ED, I have gained exponential insight into the challenges the health field faces, especially in a small community in upstate New York. I was fortunate enough to learn of opportunities and resources our community offers and bring that knowledge into an outpatient setting in my current role. Bringing these partnerships and networking allows us to face these health- care challenges.
What is the single most important characteristic for success?
Identifying your values, understanding others backgrounds and situations, and transparency.
What’s your biggest professional success?
As Clinical Operations Supervisor in the Emergency Department, I worked in collaboration with the staff to redefine our hospital’s approach to sepsis care. Ultimately, this effort decreased the mortality rate from greater than 40% in 2014to 25.9% in 2018. This gave our hospital a below state average and a high rating according to healthyny(.)gov.
What’s your dream job?
I’m in it! When I see a positive patient out- come, a clinical staff member using shared learning experiences to make a difference in patients and families lives, it is the most fulfilling feeling.
How do you maintain a work/life balance?
I enjoy time on the lake and traveling with my two children, partner and Golden Retriever. Self-care is essential so I take time to work out at a local cross fit.
What important lesson have you learned in your career?
The key to understanding a patient’s health is to understand what they envision as optimal health and making that definition the collaborative effort.
What is the most exciting trend happening in the community right now?
Seeing more family activities throughout the whole year brings the community together for a long-term investment.
What can the North Country do to make this region more appealing to a younger generation?
Continue to grow the uses of our waterfront, revitalizing the downtown area, providing more outside activities, and expanding youth sports opportunities from toddler age group and up.
What’s the biggest risk you’ve ever taken?
Moving out of my comfort zone of the ED to the Primary Care Clinics.
What is something that no one would guess about you?
I enjoy lifting weights.
Write a note to your younger self…
How you view success isn’t measured by the hours you put in or external influences. It is defined by the value you put into your team, learning from failures and commitment to the goal.