Only a special person could commit around the clock surgery service to a hospital. This special person is Bernie Wood. Her dedication to serve 24 hours a day, on-call for surgeries, is admirable. Anytime of the day, any day of the week, Bernie provides surgical nursing care with a smile and a pleasant attitude. She spreads warmth and kindness among everyone in her work environment: patients, co-workers, physicians, and patient families. Bernie always has a warm, caring touch for both patient and family and makes sure the patient’s physical and emotional needs are fulfilled. She also remembers her fellow employees—willing to lend a helping hand whenever needed.
Bernie’s hospital employment began in 1943, when as a teenager, she performed duties such as cleaning, providing patient comforts, and being a “go-fer”. This was during wartime, and her wages were a dime an hour. Bernie stayed with St. Catherine’s Hospital in McCook until she graduated from high school and left for nurses’ training. This was completed an the College of St. Teresa’s Department of Nursing, at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri.
Bernie returned to the hospital at McCook after graduation as a registered nurse in 1951, working fulltime in surgery until 1956, when a family was started. From 1956 to 1970, she continued to work in the surgery department at St. Catherine’s, on a part-time basis. In 1970, she began her unique commitment to surgery, working on an on-call schedule, 24 hours a day.
Even during the transfer to Community Hospital, Bernie has helped keep the surgery department running smoothly. She has also helped train many nurses in the specialized skills of surgical nursing.
With five children, one grandchild, and a husband, Bernie finds time to touch all the people in her life. Her faith in God is evident in the way she lives her life and her involvement in her church.
Bernie is certainly a giving, caring and dedicated person to the hospital, her family, and the community. It is an honor to have Bernie Wood represent the 1984 “Caring Kind” for Community Hospital.