Courtesy of The Times
Connie Adams empowers patients by raising awareness about heart health, and the signs and symptoms of heart attacks, as the new chest pain coordinator for The Methodist Hospitals.
Adams, a registered nurse since 1985 with a master's degree in science, also is a certified clinical nurse specialist and certified critical care nurse. She brings valuable knowledge and experience in working with physicians, nurses and emergency medical service personnel.
She will be developing protocol for working with best practices to facilitate treatment for cardiac patients and focus on educating the public to recognize signs and symptoms, call 911 and get to a health care facility.
"It's not always the Hollywood-type heart attack, clutching the chest, collapsing and then the doctor is there to save the day," Adams said. "Symptoms of a heart attack can be vague and nondescript. Pain or discomfort can be mild and come and go, nausea, arm pain in both arms and jaw pain.
"People worry about embarrassment because they worry the doctor will say 'You wasted my time.'
"There's great benefit to calling 911 and getting to the hospital. Other work-up needs to take place and we won't know (the cause) until we evaluate it. We're here to provide professional medical care," she said.
Adams is helping to build the new program that will evolve to include patient care.
"I'm really excited about it and I'm just one part of the highly educated, highly dedicated health care team. I'm just the newest member.
"As a CNS, my focus is on optimizing clinical quality, patient and family outcomes, and patient and staff safety by helping nurses, physicians and other health care providers to understand and use evidence-based practice," Adams said.
For more information, call the The Methodist Hospitals Cardio-Vascular Institute at (219) 738-3555.