National Nurse’s Week

Photo of nurse

Capt. Emmanuelle Nafziger, 49th Medical Group Pediatric Clinic nurse poses for a photo during National Nurse’s Week at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., May 10, 2018. During NNW, civilian and military nurses and medical technicians across the Department of Defense are honored for their selfless contributions to the lives of their patients. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. BreeAnn Sachs)

Photo of medical technician

Airman 1st Class Frank Schaefer, 49th Medical Group Pediatric Clinic medical technician poses for a photo during National Nurse’s Week at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., May 10, 2018. During NNW, civilian and military nurses and medical technicians across the Department of Defense are honored for their selfless contributions to the lives of their patients. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. BreeAnn Sachs)

HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. --

Nurses and medical technicians are invaluable assets to the 49th Wing. They provide direct emotional and physical support to military members and dependents stationed at Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico.

Holloman’s 49th MDG is home to a number of outstanding nurses and medical technicians serving in a variety of clinics, and took this week to recognize the selfless work of their nursing and technician staff.

In their honor, the Military Health System is observing National Nurse’s Week May 6-12, 2018. During this week, civilian and military nurses across the Department of Defense are honored for their selfless contributions to the lives of their patients. This year’s theme is ‘ThankUNurses: Inspire, Innovate, Influence.’

“Medicine is hard work, so it’s nice to recognize each member of the team,” said Capt. Emmanuelle Nafziger, 49th Medical Group Pediatric Clinic nurse. “We have doctor’s week, administrative professional’s week, pharmacy week, lab week and we get excited about all of them. It’s important to take the time to recognize what everyone does for the patient.”

Being recognized for outstanding work is a rewarding experience.

“When you go to the doctor’s office, it’s the doctor’s office. You think that doctor was so great,” said Airman 1st Class Frank Schaefer, 49th Medical Group Pediatric Clinic medical technician. “It is nice to know people also realize the nurses and technicians that are there, and they appreciate their hard work.”

For many individuals the calling to heal is one they have felt since childhood.

“I’ve been interested in medicine since I was four. I’ve always wanted to do something in health care,” said Nafziger. “I was attracted to taking care of the people that serve our country. Nursing is already service oriented, but I think serving those who serve is even more rewarding.”

Beside every nurse is an equally passionate medical technician.

“Ever since high school I wanted a job where I could help people, I really enjoy making people happy,” said Schaefer with a warm smile. “My nickname here in pediatrics is Grins. In medicine it’s all about healing people and making them better, that’s what initially drew me in.”

Having an optimistic outlook and a passion for helping people are vital characteristics when working with children.

“When I found out I was working in pediatrics my first thought was ‘it’s a really good thing I like kids,” said Schaefer. “Some of them are a handful, but seeing their smiles and laughs when they’re really sick or after injections is awesome.”

Nafziger hopes anyone considering a job in healthcare will pursue their goals.

“It’s a great job and you should do it,” Nafziger said with a chuckle. “You never get bored, you learn something every day and you get to take care of people. It’s pretty perfect.”