Updated: Apr 6
Colleen Nasman, RN, BSN, pediatric heart transplant coordinator at Cleveland Clinic Children's Hospital, reflects on how childhood hospital experiences led to her career in nursing and the role of nursing in turbulent times.
My name is Colleen Nasman. I am the Pediatric Heart Transplant Coordinator at Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital. I have been in this role for the past 22 years. Nursing was something I knew I was called to early on. As a child, I spent a great deal of time in and out of hospitals as the result of a medical condition. I was away from family and friends, a frightening situation for any child. It was the nurses who cared for me, who left their indelible mark, that I wanted to emulate. When I was asked to participate in the 2020 year of the nurse exercise, it was at the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis. In my 25 years as a nurse, I never imagined I would be in the situation we all face today. Transplant nursing is something I am very proud of. I have the honor of caring for a unique population. I serve as caregiver and resource for the patient, their family, and the staff that care for them. I have been able to use my experience to help guide one of the most vulnerable populations through these uncertain times. I serve as the point person for our transplant team. My role allows me to collaborate with professionals across the health system on a daily basis to provide the best and most comprehensive care for my patients. Nurses are always at the forefront, driving and leading the healthcare system. With what our world is facing, I have never been more proud to stand with my colleagues and say, I am a nurse!