Do the Next Right Thing: Aaron Cooper

March 21, 2024
Do the Next Right Thing: Aaron Cooper

Aaron Cooper keeps calm (and busy).

Aaron is an Admissions rep for the Emergency Department. He’s often the first person patients and visitors see when they come to the ED.

NH+C honors select employees each year as part of our Do the Next Right Thing initiative that empowers every individual on staff to help provide the best experience possible for patients, guests, and each other. We're proud to honor Aaron for bringing calm expertise to high-stress situations, with a steady hand that keeps patient care on track. 

Aaron’s colleagues say he’s willing to go the extra mile for the team, to help keep ED workflow running smoothly. Aaron is calm under pressure, multitasks well, and handles tensions that arise in a busy ED.

“There are moments in the ED that can certainly be stressful, and a lot is going on,” says Aaron, who often takes extra shifts when the Admissions staff is short-handed. “I’m happy to help out my coworkers because it’s important to me that the ED can run smoothly, and our staff can have decent work/life balance.”

As one of the few Admissions reps on the job for more than a year, Aaron pitched in on training new hires. He suggested that ED Admissions reps train in on Expanse and admissions processes in a quieter department first, to build skills and confidence before joining the hectic ED desk. “There are so many things to learn at the same time, so many workflow patterns that require multitasking – it’s hard to absorb that all in the first few days,” he explains. “I’m proud that I’ve helped make that a little more digestible, so Admissions staff are more confident.”

Aaron says there’s a perception that working in Admissions is a career steppingstone. “But there’s a real skill to the work, and it’s worthy of respect,” he says. “It’s daunting to be the first line of interaction when patients come into the ED. It takes real skill, and intuition, to do it well.”

Some ED patients don’t have a lot of experience seeking healthcare – college students away from home, underserved community members with income or language barriers. “For patients who are new to the system, we’re their first impression of the hospital, and we set the tone of their visit,” Aaron says. 

“Seeking out emergency medical care takes a phenomenal step of courage. We want to make people feel welcome and set a calm, confident tone for their care.”

It takes a mix of empathy and seriousness to help patients feel calm, and know they’re being looked after, Aaron says. “We blend respect, empathy, and connection to help patients feel comfortable in a fraught situation – a sense of helping them through a stressful situation, together.”

Like a true team.