Meet our nurse case manager Robin Watts

Even as a teen, Robin Watts knew she was interested in health care and helping others. As a child, her grandmother was ill and she saw first-hand the impact in-home care had on her family. But like many young adults, she didn’t know much about the many different career options in health care for nurses.

When she graduated from high school, her future mother-in-law suggested that she get a job as a Personal Care Attendant at Easterseals-Goodwill while taking college classes. It was a good job as a 19 year old in college. It gave Robin a chance to see what it’s like to be an in-home health care provider while working a flexible schedule so she could take classes. She also saw what LPNs and RNs in home health service did on a daily basis—which influenced the direction that she wanted to take her career.

Robin completed her LPN and accepted a job promotion at Easterseals-Goodwill, working as an LPN while earning her RN degree. Today, nine years later, she’s a Case Manager RN for Easterseals-Goodwill’s Medallion Home Health Care in Great Falls.

“I knew I wanted to eventually be in health care, but I didn’t see myself working in a hospital. It wasn’t until I saw what Case Manager RNs did that I knew I wanted to do it,” says Robin. “I also wanted a family of my own so working in a job that is mostly Monday-Friday during the days is important now that I have young children. Plus, it’s good money being an RN. This job works for my family and me.”

Medallion Home Health Care provides in-home skilled nursing services for people who are unable to leave their home to receive professional nursing care, or who find it to be a taxing effort to leave home.

Robin says that a lot of people don’t realize that nurses use the same skills in home health care as they would in other clinical settings. “It’s a myth that we don’t use all the nursing skills we train for in home health care. We do it all—wound care, IVs, lab draws, you name it. I think it’s even more challenging and requires even more problem solving to help people in their homes.”

She also mentioned that nurses who provide in-home care get to know the patient’s family and caregivers, many of whom are very involved in their loved one’s care. She has gotten to know many families and really enjoys this aspect of her job.

“I’d tell young people who are thinking of going into health care there are more options than you think in the field of nursing. There’s home health, hospice, and so much more. You don’t have to work nights or 12 hour shifts in nursing.”

“It is the most rewarding job.”

Easterseals-Goodwill’s clinical services in Great Falls and Butte, Montana offer career advancement opportunities, flexible work schedules for students seeking nursing degrees, a tuition reimbursement program, and a nursing scholarship for employees who are seeking to advance their nursing career. For more information about jobs visit www.esgw.org/jobs.