News: El Paso Army nurse cares for Soldiers, families, brightens lives at Bliss
Story by Sgt. Barry St. Clair
FORT BLISS, Texas - Almost everyone can remember past visits to the doctor, sitting in crowded, industrial-decor waiting rooms filled with fussy children, sniffling patients, and waiting ... The medical industry is making strides to make waiting areas more pleasant, interactive, and even entertaining or informative. The mobile world has changed much of the way we do business, and provides people the opportunity to read a book, email, do homework, trade stocks, and update status on a variety of social platforms.
The Army medical system is experiencing a makeover as well, considering Wi-Fi for patient waiting areas as a way to connect a visit to a health care provider with the rest of life. Soldiers and families are busier than ever, and the demands of meeting deadlines, taking care of soldiers, and connecting with family can be filled, even while waiting for a checkup.
Professional nursing and support staff changes the healthcare experience for soldiers and family members as well. The soldier Family Care Clinic at West Fort Bliss is fortunate to have one of the most positive, and friendly nurses on its staff.
Aidee Moreno, an El Paso native, is a DA civilian nurse at the SFCC.
She joined the Army medical professionals at Team Bliss just three months ago, and has had a great impact on the patients and staff she works with.
Moreno, who has been a nurse for five years on Jan. 24 said, “[Working with soldiers] is a whole new population I had never dealt with before. At the clinic I worked in El Paso, we increasingly saw soldiers who were referred to us, and I always thanked them for what they do for our country, keeping us all safe.”
Moreno, a graduate of Burges High School and the University of Texas at El Paso, is currently pursuing a graduate degree in the Nurse Practitioner Program at UTEP. She anticipates graduating, becoming a nurse practitioner, and remaining on the Army Medical team here.
“The most complicated thing [integrating into the Army] is trying to contain all care within the Army system, and learning the protocols to making a referral outside,” said Moreno. “I am honored to be a member of the Army, caring for soldiers and their families. It makes me feel a part of those who serve our country.”
Moreno is planning for future service at Fort Bliss. She enjoys cooking all kinds of foods. Her favorite dish is coconut shrimp with winter squash noodles. One of her local cultural favorite is to roast peppers until the skins can be pulled off, and then the tender flesh can be deseeded and stuffed with ground beef or cheese, dipped in egg whites and then fried.
“It is a comfort food here,” she said.
Moreno and 25 nurse practitioners care for an average of 350 patients a day. Most people would agree this shows the dedication that Moreno displays each and every day.
“I try to bring myself to where I can communicate with everyone and understand them,” said Moreno. “I want to try to help people as much as I can.”
Moreno, who enjoys El Paso’s unique culture, shared her favorite activities.
“I like Memorial Park, and Chamizal National Memorial,” said Moreno. “El Paso has quite a variety of parks. Chamizal has a program every summer called ‘Music Under the Stars’ which brings in a variety of free concerts including Mexican folk dancers, jazz, country bands and others. They are all free, and it is a very festive atmosphere. It’s great.”
Another great El Paso experience is hiking the mountains at the Franklin Mountain State Park, which the city of El Paso surrounds in a horseshoe shape. Hiking the trails, or driving Transmountain Dr., is a great experience.
“I like to hike. From the top of the mountain, you can see all of west El Paso, most of central [downtown] El Paso, and all of northeast El Paso. It is a serene and awesome view. Sitting in the wayside up on Transmountain Dr. at night and looking at all the lights is great too.”
Speaking Rock Casino and Entertainment Center offers another cultural entertainment experience.
“They have a lot of free concerts too. And really good acts, good restaurants, and the Pablo culture interpretive centers,” Moreno said.
The future of the Army is at Fort Bliss, the Army’s premier station of choice, and training, and deployment center.
“The El Paso community has a strong culture, but many places have a strong culture,” said Moreno. “We don’t have tornadoes, or hurricanes – it is a pretty safe community.”
There is a lot within reach of El Paso as well.
“We have a very good airport, Cloudcroft, Ruidoso, the spas at Truth or Consequences, and Albuquerque N. M. is all within driving distance of El Paso,” said Moreno. “You just have to get out and experience what is here.”