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Life Changing Is ... Being There for the Journey

Anthony F., LPN, Rehabilitation Nurse

"I found the discipline of nursing that I wanted to be involved with, and I love my job and going in every day."

In his job, Anthony gets a bedside view of a patient's recovery process.

As a rehabilitation nurse, he works with patients who are recovering from a stroke, brain injuries, spinal injuries, and more. He helps them with whatever they need — anything from toileting or dressing changes to transferring them from bed to wheelchair.

The happiest moments are when he sees patients who make a full recovery.

“I've found my niche in rehab because we see them progress and then we send them home or wherever else they're going," he says. "It's very fulfilling to watch as they come along and then end up going home or moving on from there. And then they come back and visit, and it's amazing seeing them when they come back."

Before becoming a nurse, Anthony served in the U.S. Air Force. He worked in the transitional care unit (TCU) at UPMC Montefiore before coming to UPMC Mercy's rehabilitation unit. He's worked the last six years in rehabilitation.

"I finally got to where I wanted to be," Anthony says. "I found the discipline of nursing that I wanted to be involved with, and I love my job and going in every day."

Anthony's military background still serves him well. He gets to work early each day and prepares for his shift. He also has the ability to pick up on medical procedures because he has a technical background.

His experience also helps him to be a resource for younger nurses, a job he gladly takes on.

"I think we all understand that the best way to get through your day is to work together," he says. "We will do whatever we need to do to get the job done, patient safety being No. 1. So, we do whatever it takes to make sure that that is taken care of."

Over the years, Anthony has accumulated thank-you cards from patients grateful for his help. He also received a DAISY Award, which recognizes nurses' technical skills and compassionate care.

But the biggest enjoyment to Anthony remains in seeing patients get better.

"The benefit of my job is getting to see them going out the door after being in rehab and getting back to their lives," he says.

At UPMC, Life Changing Medicine means helping patients on their recovery journeys.

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