In one of her scariest moments, Jasmin and her daughter turned to Connecticut Children’s.
Not only did they find the care, comfort, and compassion they needed, Jasmin found her calling. Now a respiratory therapist and fifteen years into her career at Connecticut Children’s, Jasmin is the one making a difference in her patient’s lives.
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Name: Jasmin Gerard, RRT
Role: Respiratory Therapist
Time at Connecticut Children’s: 15 years
Connecticut Children’s Unique Advantages
What are the advantages of working in Connecticut’s only health system dedicated to children?
I don’t think I could fulfill the passion I have working with families and children anywhere else but Connecticut Children’s. I went to many clinical sites as a student and I chose Connecticut Children’s because of the welcome I got when I stepped foot into the door. We have a great team of leaders that works really hard to make us stronger clinicians and the workplace better for us. It’s a good environment.
Working With Kids
What inspired you to start a career in pediatric nursing?
I have a daughter who was really sick as an infant and I brought her to Connecticut Children and saw the care and how passionate everyone was. I wanted to help other families the way everyone else helped me.
What drew you to Connecticut Children’s?
My passion for children. I’ve always have a really soft spot for kids. And after working at different clinical sites, when I came to Connecticut Children’s, I just knew just that is where I wanted to be. So I’m here!
Why respiratory therapy?
I shadowed at a hospital and just fell in love with saving people’s lives and being able to help someone breathe again. It felt good knowing that I could do that. And I decided, that’s what I want to do!
Life as a Pediatric Respiratory Therapist
What advice would you give a nurse or respiratory therapist considering a career in pediatrics?
I think the biggest thing is how you approach the families. At first, you might be scared. Just be patient, compassionate, and get to know them. That’s how you build the bonds that help you do your job. Listen to what they say to you about their child, and then go from there.
What is your most memorable experience so far?
There are so many! One family came in with a 16 year old son. He wasn’t able to breathe, so I stayed with him, calming him down, and getting him to the ICU. When he finally woke up and felt better, he was like, “thank you for saving me. Thank you for staying with me. Thank you for advocating for me.” His mom even called me after they went home just to thank me.
What’s it like working with the families of your patients?
We build very good relationships with our families. You’re meeting these people at a very, very difficult time in their life. But you just have to do the best that you can to be understanding of that. And usually they come around and we become friends.
Connecticut Children’s Culture
How would you describe the culture here at Connecticut Children’s?
There’s a culture of kindness here. We’re a big diverse group of people from all different backgrounds. When families, coworkers, employees walk into the hospital, they always feel welcome. Connecticut Children’s has created an environment where people are respected. And it’s easier to do your job when you feel respected.
Benefits & Career Growth
Best perk or benefit?
The benefits are great. We get dental and medical insurance. The retirement savings account is great here. Vacation time is great. Flexible hours are amazing. Time off is great. And then we get to work three days a week!
How does Connecticut Children’s support career growth?
One of the things I took advantage of was the tuition reimbursement program to get my licensure as a respiratory therapist. You can get reimbursed if you want to go back to school to obtain certificates, credentials, and other education to help you advance your career or accomplish your job.
How do you envision your future at Connecticut Children’s?
I envision myself being here and for the next 15 or 20 years. I’m passionate about working with children. I work with a great team of people. The doctors, my coworkers, and my management team have been really great and supportive throughout the years. And I love the nurses I work with—absolutely love them. They’re what’s keeping me here. I know change could be good sometimes, but I love being here!