Nurses Finding a Family with Ascension Seton Healthcare


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The Sunday, June 8, edition of the Austin American-Statesman featured a story about nursing careers with Ascension Seton. Below is an excerpt of that story. You can read the full , the newspaper’s website.

By Lisa Ogle

While taking a course on obstetric nursing, Ana Barefield helped deliver a baby. She coached the mother through labor, and when the little boy was born, she dried him off with warm blankets, listened to him cry and watched as he calmed down, looked around the room and then blinked at her.

“I was hooked,” said Barefield, a labor and delivery RN resident at Ascension Seton Medical Center Austin. “It was an amazing feeling to be a part of such a special and intimate moment with this family that wholeheartedly welcomed me into this situation.”

That was in her junior year of nursing school. She had several offers to consider but chose Ascension Seton because of its Magnet Recognition Program status (which recognizes facilities that let nurses dictate what nurses do, among other things – four Ascension Seton hospitals have earned this designation) and allowed her to get into labor and delivery right away.

“Ascension Seton is known for treating their nurses better than other places,” Barefield said. “While I was in school, any time I saw someone in navy blue scrubs (the uniform of RNs), I always asked, ‘Where do you work? How do you like it?’ And nurses that worked at other places always had mixed reviews. Ascension Seton nurses always said, ‘I love my job. I love going to work every day.’ ”


Katie Scott, RN, is one of those nurses. She has worked at Ascension Seton’s University Medical Center Brackenridge for three years and is the clinical nursing supervisor and interim unit manager in the cardiology department. She loves working at Ascension Seton, the only nonprofit hospital system in the area, for many reasons.

First of all, the mission: “I’ve never worked for a facility that truly lives out the mission on a daily basis, as UMCB does,” she said. Another reason is the people: “My co-workers are some of the most passionate, caring, dedicated and talented group of people I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with.” In addition, “There are so many opportunities for professional growth and development available to the staff.”

Compared to other places she’s worked, “I feel much more valued as an individual and nurse, working for Ascension Seton,” Scott said. “I feel as though my ideas and contributions are heard and respected. I’m not just an employee.”

This type of collaboration is crucial as the landscape of health care continues to change, and Ascension Seton hopes to stay at the forefront of finding innovative solutions to address the changes. One of these has been the expectation not to only provide care but to provide high-quality care, Scott said.

“Nurses are now responsible for being knowledgeable of and providing evidence-based care,” she said. “There has also been a recent push to shift care to the outpatient settings. Ascension Seton Total Health Partners is a great example of how Ascension Seton is meeting this demand. Opportunities for employment in the outpatient setting are more readily available than they once were.”

The new Ascension Seton Medical Center at the University of Texas, which will be the primary training site for students at UT’s new Dell Medical School, will also create new opportunities.