Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas recognizes and appreciates the important roles nurses have in our everyday lives. You may be surprised to learn that we employ more than 40 nurses and that some of them work directly with our members.
Through our HealthyOptions program, we offer members the chance to be proactive in making healthy lifestyle changes. Several nurses work as part of the disease management program by helping members manage their chronic conditions like diabetes, asthma and high cholesterol.
Heidi Hawk, RN, BSN, CCM, has been assisting members in the disease management program since 2013. She recently shared her insights about the program and what she enjoys most.
What inspired you to become a nurse?
I was inspired by the hospice care that my grandfather received at the end of his life. It allowed him to make his own decisions about his care and how he lived the end of his life. Secondly, my sister and I were in a car accident in 1994 and both of us received care from wonderful nursing staff.
Describe how you help BCBSKS members through the disease management program.
The disease management program through BCBSKS is unique in that it allows members to talk with a nurse over the phone when it is convenient for the member’s schedule. The member and the nurse review medical conditions and lifestyle behaviors. After which, they collaborate ideas on how to modify these behaviors to improve overall health, so the member can better manage their medical condition.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Being diagnosed with a chronic medical condition can be very overwhelming and time consuming. I enjoy taking the time to help members look at each medical condition and work on ways to modify daily habits that will, in turn, make a big difference in their overall health and wellness, while living well and controlling their medical condition.
What advice would you give to someone who’s interested in becoming a nurse?
It is a wonderful career that is different every day, but yet very rewarding every day. My advice would be to not set your sights on only one area of practice, as the field of nursing is full of opportunity to help others with wellness and health.