With dual degrees in Nursing and Social Work, Jessi Hickey left Nashville for Chicago in search of a career that would marry both disciplines. Once she accepted the position as an Orthopedic Navigator at Swedish Covenant Health, she knew she had found her home. Three and half years later, Jessi is still delighted to help her patients on their road to recovery and work alongside her fellow colleagues. Asked to explain her role, Jessi notes, “I’m the travel agent for patients having a hip, knee or shoulder replacement. I assist them through their entire time here in the hospital and beyond. I meet with a patient pre-operatively and help them understand expectations of surgery. I then visit with them in the hospital to see how they are feeling and educate them about next steps, and finally, follow-up with them after discharge acting as their point person in case they have any concerns or questions.”
Jessi’s commitment to her patients is inspired by the warmth and friendliness she feels from the entire hospital community. To Jessi, the SCH staff is like a second family. “I love working at Swedish; I really like my co-workers and supervisors, it feels like family. You know everyone walking the hallways- at least by face- and everyone is so welcoming. It’s a really good place to work.” It’s this compassion for her patients, community members and fellow co-workers that inspires Jessi to give back to SCH.
Over the years, Jessi has participated in the annual Employee Campaign, raised funds from running the Chicago Half Marathon as a member of Team SCH, and joined the SCH Foundation Associates’ Board. Becoming a leader of Associates’ Board has had a significant impact on Jessi’s understanding of the Foundation, donor-funded programs, and the importance of giving back. She originally joined the Board as a way of meeting people when she first arrived from Nashville, but soon discovered that Board members play an important role as ambassadors and fundraisers for SCH. Jessi explains, “I think being on the Board is a small way of giving back and contributing to some of the programs that I don’t have an actual hand in but that I can support with some fundraising. I love the homeless initiative (Housing Connections) and the Violence Prevention Program. Being able to raise awareness for these programs to people in the community and provide funds to help these programs is why I continue on the Associate’s Board.” The Board is responsible for organizing and hosting several fundraising events throughout the year. The most recent event was a fun-filled, beer-tasting fundraiser at Bar on Buena, complete with food, libations and raffle prizes. Another event is planned for Spring 2020.
Jessi and her fellow Associate Board Members are looking to increase Board membership- especially among employees. As Jessi explains, “If you like where you work and you want to support your patients, it’s another way to get in involved. The Associate’s Board is a great a platform to advocate for your patients and your work area by creating awareness and fundraising”. If you would like more information about joining the Associate’s Board, or making a donation to the Foundation, please contact the Foundation at Foundation@swedishcovenant.org or 773.293.5121.