It doesn't often happen that someone's written description of their ideal job turns into their ticket for actually landing the job.
But that's essentially how Rick Luscombe got his start as vascular access clinical nurse leader at St. Paul's Hospital.
"Writing up the job description was part of a project for my nursing degree at the University of Victoria," says Rick, who had already spent 12 years working as a renal nurse in the St. Paul's hemodialysis program.
Following his graduation from UVic in 2002, Rick became the first vascular access (VA) nurse at St. Paul's and one of only three at that time in the province. From there, it wasn't long before Rick and his colleagues were talking regularly, sharing their knowledge and working to improve VA practices. Eventually this led to formation of Provincial Vascular Access Services Team (PVAST) and the development of best practices for VA care in BC that are recognized by renal care providers across the country.
Rick's professional dedication is also reflected by his involvement with the Canadian Association of Nephrology Nurses and Technologists (CANNT) and his commitment to nursing education. He is a past president of CANNT and has been a board member since 2006. This spring he will also receive an award for excellence in nursing education from the College of BC Nurses.
"Nephrology has been a great fit for me," says Rick. "I like the long-term relationships we have with our patients, I like the diversity that's available to me in my work, I like my role as an educator and I work with a really great group of people."
Rick launched his nursing career with a nursing diploma from George Brown College in Toronto in 1985. His first job was in the nephrology ward at Toronto Western Hospital. Five years later, after visiting friends in Vancouver, he decided to move west and was promptly hired by St. Paul's Hospital.
Although he used to be a dedicated distance runner and completed ten marathons, including such biggies as the Boston and New York races, Rick has now given up pavement pounding for a less painful pursuit – Dragon Boat racing with the O2P team.