It's International Women's Day and we're highlighting just a few of the thousands of incredible women who help us deliver exceptional care at Vancouver Coastal Health. Read about all of them in VCH News Stories and see more photos on our VCH Instagram and Facebook.
For Jennifer Buck, the best part of her role as nurse practitioner (NP) lead is knowing that everything her team does – every meeting, every complicated planning session and every difficult conversation – is working together towards a common goal to put patients' health and interests first.
She graduated in 2008 from University of British Columbia (UBC), having completed most of her student placements with VCH. Jennifer was impressed with the how well the Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) team worked together and how committed they were to serving patients with the high level of care they deserve.
"I had the most amazing and fulfilling placements at VCH," Jennifer says. "I wanted to come back and work in this great, dedicated environment."
As nurse practitioner lead, Jennifer works with departments to set up new NP roles, helps training NPs in their practises, and ensures all NPs get their credentials.
Jennifer has always wanted to help people and make the world a better place. Combatting gender bias and inequality and creating a more inclusive workplace is very important to her. This started at a very young age.
She recalls her experience as a child when her grade three teacher would ask for a "strong boy" to do physical tasks, like opening the window or lifting a box. One day, Jennifer decided to volunteer and still remembers the surprised look on her teacher's face.
Women stand at the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic and of health care, in general. "As health-care providers, we are the one who run towards danger not away. We know that times are tough these days, but we can help, and together we are strong," Jennifer adds.
"Before the pandemic, we had decided to foster a culture of non-judgemental and caring support for all our team members. What has really kept us going through the pandemic is knowing that we have a team of people who care about us and who have our backs."
Jennifer has seen the NP profession evolve over the years, having gone from a relatively unknown profession 15 years ago to having NPs with their own department and holding positions within the Ministry of Health.
Her drive to excel as an NP come from the various role models in her life, especially her Elders who have been in leadership roles. "They have been a great inspiration for me," Jennifer adds.
Hugs from my kiddo.
Being a part of a team that's making a difference.
Skiing and canoeing.
The Good Place
This year's theme and pose for International Women's Day is Choose to Challenge. Posing with a hand held high shows commitment to choose to challenge inequality, call out bias, question stereotypes and help forge an inclusive world.