by James Coburn
Saving a life can be an adrenaline rush for Scott Ellis.
As a registered nurse he keeps watch of a multitude of patients all over OU Medical Center Edmond as manager of Critical Care and Telemetry Services. Telemetry means they are monitoring the cardiac aspect of the patient from a remote area.
“It makes you feel that your hard work through your education and all the time and experience that you have has paid off to impact someone else’s life and their families’ lives,” Ellis said. “I always think that it could have been my mom or my grandmother or sister. That’s how I look at it that also you’re doing something great for the community as a whole. It could have been your loved one as well.”
He earned his bachelor’s degree in nursing at Southern Nazarene University 10 years ago and holds an MBA from Oklahoma Christian University. Ellis earned a bachelor’s degree at Oklahoma City University with a minor in chemistry.
He came to OU Medical Center Edmond in October after transferring from multiple positions at OU Medical Center in downtown Oklahoma City that includes critical care.
“For the critical care aspect of it, there is a lot of autonomy and a lot of things that you can do to save someone’s life,” he said. “And it’s wonderful to bring all of our skilled knowledge together for a patient in one area.”
The hospital’s intensive care unit receives a variety of patients without having a separate trauma ICU for those patients that may be transferred to OU Medical Center in downtown Oklahoma City.
Twelve ICU beds encompass the unit. The ICU remains busy as its volumes have increased over the past year.
“We’re a pretty lively hospital,” he said.
“We do some levels of trauma but we do not do all trauma,” he said. “Our downtown campus is a wonderful system and we work really well together to function for the betterment of our patients.”
Seeing a variety of different patients with medical needs serves the nurses’ skill sets well, he said.
“They are very caring. They give a lot of themselves for others during very long shifts,” Ellis said. “They are always willing, if they need, to stay over beyond their hour shift. They really care about the patients, the families and the impact that they have on people’s lives. That’s very admirable to me.”
Ellis still has patients he attended to as a nurse from years ago who will text him or call him at Christmas and other holidays to thank him. He said he is amazed to always see the impact he has made on others. This thought carries through his days. Nurses remember the great experiences they have had, Ellis said.
His journey to become a nurse was sparked when an aunt who was very close to him had cancer. The care he witnessed that his aunt received during her plight with cancer motivated him. His aunt later died, but just to see how his aunt’s nurses interacted with her with compassionate and voluminous care caused Ellis to want to be a nurse for others.
Of course the career of nursing is always evolving with new insight brought from technology and skill sets. Ellis said ICU nurses at OU Medical Center Edmond continue a learning path.
“The thing about nursing is you are always going to learn something new,” he said. “It never ends. We’re not at our university anymore getting our degree but we’re continuously learning new skills, new education. There’s new medications all the time and new ways of treatments.
“So that’s the neat thing about our profession. It’s a continual education throughout your career. It’s never going to end. So we are always reading and doing in-services and skills checks.”
The hospital’s location at the northwest corner of Second Street and Bryant Avenue is patient friendly in terms of easy access from all parts of the community and beyond.
“They really want to stay here and we have a lot of people who live here in Edmond that say that driving to Oklahoma City is going out of town,” Ellis said.
The community enjoys a small town feeling in a vibrant, growing community of more than 89,000 residents. So he said it is wonderful to provide services to support that small town feeling.
He stays healthy and fit himself both mentally and physically. Ellis said his favorite thing to do with his family is to travel. They recently returned from a venture to London, Paris and Barcelona.
Barcelona was amazing with its beaches and mountains. The gothic area is an incredible place to walk down alleyways, he said.
“There are shops and apartments. There used to be palaces, but you walk down an alleyway because they didn’t have cars at one time, so there’s a beautiful cathedral and a restaurant.”
“I love to travel as much as I can. We stay really busy with what we do, but when we travel we like to relax,” he said