Meeting the Challenge: You don’t need to scoot over – NAH IT Superheroes help “fix it” behind the scenes

Invisible energy 

Right now, much of the energy running Northern Arizona Healthcare is invisible.  

For example, superheroes in the Information Technology, or IT, department work behind the scenes to ensure colleagues have the top-level technology they need to fight COVID-19 and care for the communities we serve.  

The days of saying “scoot over” and resolving the issue in person are, for now, replaced by virtual explanations and training as IT professionals troubleshoot problems remotely in innovative, efficient and timely ways.  

They do amazing work doing what they did before the pandemic – only now from a distance, or while wearing lots of personal protective equipment. 

“We go; we fix it.” 

“If somebody has a problem, that’s our job,” said Rich Klecker, field service lead for NAH’s Verde Valley Medical Center. “We go; we fix it. To make people happy and more productive, that makes a difference. That’s our nature of the beast. And I think we all work fabulously together.” 

The intricate, interconnected workings of Northern Arizona Healthcare’s computer and informational technology systems are an essential part of the functioning of our hospitals. Without them, much of our work would sputter to a halt – including, as just one example, the nursing call system.  

But how do you troubleshoot a computer or telephone issue without going into a patient’s room? With a lot of ingenuity and willingness to try new approaches as you walk colleagues through the issue, step by step. 

“We’ve learned to communicate better,” said Nadiene Quezada, a field services technician. “I’ll be like, ‘Hey, let’s FaceTime, and we can get this going.’ And I guide them. Even with social distancing, we’re able to guide our users face-to-face, but through technology. Before, I was like, ‘Hey, step aside, I’ll just do it.’ And now it’s like, ‘OK, let me guide you and show you.’”  

“I really love to focus on creative solutions.” 

Support Services Manager Rachel Wade said the pandemic has not changed her team’s commitment to customer service, even though it does present unique challenges and uncharted territory. 

“We work in healthcare so we expect the unknown at times, but…this was a totally different dynamic than many of us have experienced before,” she said. “Anxiety was pretty high (when COVID-19 started) but I really appreciated the work our hospital has done to provide communication, to share information and updates with us.” 

As examples, Rachel mentioned the helpfulness of our organization’s colleague forums as well as BioMed’s specialized method of decontaminating N-95 masks, which means we don’t experience PPE shortages.  

“These sorts of things have really instilled confidence that, OK, this is something we really can get through and we don’t need to be fearful of because we have the right support with each other and with our community,” she said.  

“I get chills and goosebumps.” 

Rachel thanks her fellow IT professionals for pulling together to keep us all afloat and thriving. 

“I get chills and goosebumps thinking about how grateful I am to be a part of moving forward and to see the work they persevere on each and every day,” she said. “And I know we can shine brighter together, building community, and really relying on each other to be better together.”