Sean Healey, Patient Care Tech at Holy Name Medical Center

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Healthcare workers are at the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic and now more they could use our help. They’re interacting with COVID-19 patients every day to help them + save lives, and as a result, are often quarantining from their families, all to keep their loved ones and others safe. Their line of work is the definition of risky businesses.

That’s why in an effort to show them some love and appreciation, we’ve started a new series to feature the dedicated + amazing people who are right there on the frontlines. We’ll be sharing their stories and ways you can help them, too. With their permission, we’ll be sharing their respective Venmo accounts, if you would like to spread some joy to them with a direct donation {think buying them a meal, a coffee, or just a little pick-me-up}.

This time around, we spoke with Sean Healey, a patient care tech at Holy Name Hospital + Hoboken resident who is dedicating his time and efforts daily to help those affected by COVID-19. Read on for his story, and how you can help Sean and his hospital unit at Holy Name Medical Center directly.

Have a health care provider you want to submit for a feature? Email their contact info to hello@hobokengirl.com!

PS: Make sure to go to your windows/balconies nightly to cheer all of our incredible healthcare professionals at 7:00PM each evening.

sean healey holy name hospital

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Sean Healey. I’ve lived in Hoboken for five and a half years.

What is your current occupation and how long have you been doing it for?

I’ve been a patient care tech at Holy Name Medical Center for one month and am a student nurse at Montefiore School of Nursing for the last one and a half years. 

What was your original career plan? How did you get into this career?

I worked in the business world for a while. After speaking with friends and family who enjoy working in healthcare, I felt like it would be a better fit for me. Right after my wife and I got married, I left my nine to five behind and enrolled in nursing school. I took on the role of PCT to gain even more experience.

See More: Maxim Casas, ER Nurse at Christ Hospital in Jersey City

sean healey nurse healthcare hero

So far, what has been the highlight of your career?

Watching people get better during the course of care. It makes you feel like you made a difference.

What has been the hardest day/scariest day on the job?

I recently was floated to the ER to work with COVID-19 patients. The situation is incredibly fragile. There are very strict PPE precautions in place.

Who is someone you look up to/your hero?

 My wife and parents. She offers me the best support and guidance in life and keeps me grounded. My parents are hardworking, selfless people. I do my best to emulate them.

What qualities does a person need to do your job?

People in the hospital tend to be pretty sick and vulnerable. They don’t want to be there. Nobody wants to be a patient in a hospital. So, you really need to have good listening skills, display empathy, and exhibit patience. A strong stomach is helpful, too.

What’s something that people wouldn’t expect about what you do on a daily basis?

As I’m fairly new, I’ve been surprised at how many male nurses and techs I’ve met. I walked in expecting to be one of the only male nursing students – but that’s not the case, in my experience.

Another thing — dry hands. As you can imagine, we are washing our hands and using sanitizer constantly {in regular settings, as well as with COVID-19 patients}. This can cause us to have extremely dry hands.

Describe a typical day on the job.

On your feet, constantly moving and multitasking. You want to be as responsive and timely as possible in terms of meeting a patient’s needs.

How do you spend your free time?

Right now, studying for school and attending class {which is now online}. Before this virus madness, I enjoyed going to the gym, playing basketball on the Hoboken courts, and getting together with family and friends.

Are there organizations that you feel strongly about and support? Tell us about them.

Anything COVID related is worth looking into. I’m a big New York Giants fan and they are currently, through the Meadowlands YMCA, helping local emergency personnel meet their childcare needs while at work.

sean healey heathcare hero

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a healthcare worker during this pandemic?

Providing quality direct patient care while keeping myself safe. The margin for error is increased in terms of protecting yourself. Given the current situation, I change, shower and throw my scrubs in the laundry the second I get to my apartment after work.

What are the most common symptoms you’re coming across?

For COVID patients — fever, cough, immobility, breathing issues {most COVID patients that I saw were intubated)} and anxiety.

What is one thing you want the public to know about the virus?

Although it’s frightening, there are simple, preventative measures to take to ensure that you do not get it or pass it to others. You need to wash your hands on a regular basis, and do not touch your face {especially while out in public}. Take social distancing very seriously. Carry hand sanitizer if you have to go from one public place to the next. Again, don’t touch your face.

Do you know anyone personally affected by the virus?

We know of people {friend of a friend situation}, but nobody we would see on a regular basis.

Read  More: 16 Ways to Help First Responders in Hoboken, Jersey City, + Beyond

How can we help? What can we do? 

Keep spreading the message! You’re doing a great job. This virus can target anyone, at any age and have severe health consequences. It is definitely not “just the flu.”

My wife wishes there would be a stronger PSA about family get-togethers. Many senior-aged parents are still initiating social gatherings – not understanding that quarantine, unfortunately, means no big “Sunday dinner” and not seeing adult children or grandkids for a little while.

If someone wanted to donate food/supplies/etc. to you + your team, how could they do that? 

To donate to Holy Name Medical Center, visit helpholyname.org.

Have a health care provider you want to submit for a feature? Email their contact info to hello@hobokengirl.com!

PS: Make sure to go to your windows/balconies nightly to cheer all of our incredible healthcare professionals at 7:00PM each evening.


Written by:

Arielle is a born-and-bred Jersey girl and like a true NJ native, half her diet consists of bagels and the other half pizza. As a graduate of both American University and City, University of London, she’s been a passionate writer ever since she wrote her first “book” in the first grade. When she’s not furiously typing away at her keyboard, she spends her time ticking places off of her “to travel to” list, trying any and all new foods, and trying to stop herself from spending too much money at Zara.