• Amanda InghamMay 7, 2020

    Leading on the front lines of a pandemic
    National Nurses Week May 6-12, 2020

    Florence Nightingale is recognized as the founder of modern day nursing for her fearless compassion as she implemented early infection prevention measures to protect and care for British soldiers during the Crimean War.

    Every nurse knows the story of her courage and steadfast leadership that has inspired so many to combine their passions to care for people and protect them through science.

    May 12th, 2020, marks the 200th anniversary of Nightingale’s birth as nurses throughout the world celebrate National Nurses Week on the front lines of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

    At Rome Memorial Hospital, Amanda Ingham, B.S.N., was promoted to interim nurse manager of the Emergency Department only days before the pandemic became a local reality.

    Although leading through a rapidly evolving pandemic is challenging, Ingham said there’s no other team that she’d rather be a part of.

    “Everyone is strong, hard-working and not afraid of anything,” she said proudly. “They’re just amazing, compassionate people who want to know everything about this virus, so they can protect our patients and each other. When patients are afraid, our nurses are at their side to comfort and reassure them.”

    While COVID-19 is at the forefront of everyone’s mind, the Emergency Department continues to provide critical care for all types of emergencies from heart attacks to broken bones.

    “No one should delay care out of fear,” Ingham said. “We have taken every precaution to provide the safest place for our patients. I’m not worried for my family to come here. I know we’re doing an exceptional job of protecting each other.”

    It’s this commitment to community that brought Ingham back to Rome Memorial Hospital after working in a cardiac telemetry unit at St. Peter’s Hospital in Albany.

    The 2010 Rome Free Academy graduate worked at Rome Memorial Hospital as an aide when she was a nursing student at Utica College. After she graduated with her bachelor’s degree in nursing in 2015, she felt like she needed a change and moved to Albany where she gained valuable experience. But, she missed her family and Rome Memorial Hospital and moved back home.

    “At a community hospital, you’re helping people you know, people you grew up with,” she said. Ingham was inspired to become a nurse watching nurses care for her grandmother when she was sick. “I could just see how much they loved her when they took care of her.”

    “I love what I do and couldn’t imagine doing anything else,” Ingham said. “When you’re a nurse, you experience every emotion, sharing in your patients’ happiness and sadness. There are moments when you don’t have to say anything. You just have to be there so no one has to experience joy or grief alone.”

    Ingham credits her role models Kelly West, Ashley Edwards, and many others for nurturing and supporting her as she assumed day-to-day oversight of the Emergency Department.

    “Rome is unique because you learn and grow with the support of a team of leaders who want you to succeed because of their commitment to this community,” she said. “Even during the most difficult days, we push through because you know that what you’re doing is for the right reasons and you’re confident that there’s always brighter days ahead.”