Simfrosa Gumabong, MHA, BSN, RN, PCCN: Nurse, Leader, Mentor
Sim joined GBMC in June 2020. She heard a lot of positive feedback about the culture at GBMC and how well staff members work together. Shortly after being hired as an RN4, Sim was promoted to Interim Manager of the Pre-op/PACU/Center for Perioperative Optimization at GBMC, a role she was a little apprehensive to take at first.
“As a nurse manager, you typically have an RN3 or RN4 below you to assist, but in my case, I am the manager and the RN4. I felt nervous to take this on by myself, but I don’t feel alone because of my team,” Sim said. “The team understands. They always tell me, ‘Do what you need to do, and we will take care of operations.’ I feel secure because of the team. They show up and are understanding and helpful, and they encourage me. I don’t think I could do this job without them. I love the team here.”
In addition to having a supportive team and leaders, she cited resources at GBMC available for any nurse looking to ascend the nursing career ladder. Sim was in the middle of pursuing a master’s in healthcare administration when she came to GBMC. She was able to utilize the tuition reimbursement program and loan repayment program to finish her studies. She officially earned her MHA in May 2021.
“The leaders at GBMC are very supportive and understanding. They value work-life balance by not only honoring your time off, but encouraging it. That is the difference from other organizations,” Sim said.
Sim pays her gratitude forward by empowering her employees in their roles and recognizing the expertise they bring to the unit and patients. She also serves as a member of the Welcoming Committee for GBMC’s international nurses.
Sim is originally from the Philippines. After working as a nurse there for 10 years, she was placed at a hospital in Baltimore via an international nursing agency. Though she had no prior knowledge of Baltimore, she loved the city and the location. At GBMC, she assists the co-leaders of the international nurse program—Jill Wheeler, MSN, RN, Director of Infection Prevention, Specialty and Inpatient Surgery, Wound/Ostomy/HBO, and Claire Cafirma, DNP, MSN, RN, CNOR, Director of Perioperative, Interventional Radiology, Endoscopy—to onboard and welcome new nurses.
“No one is an island,” Sim tells the new nurses. “You have someone to work with you. Know your resources, speak up and ask for help. Ask questions and be confident. People here are welcoming and supportive.”
As part of the Welcoming Committee, Sim initiated a Facebook page for the group. In the midst of her busy schedule, she also rounds on units to check in with the nurses and arranges rides or get-togethers for them outside of work.
The welcoming culture and feeling of acceptance Sim hopes to cultivate for these nurses is something she feels herself every day, and the reason she loves working at GBMC.
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