1) Adjunct Faculty, Lorain County Community College
2) Certified Medical Assistant, Phlebotomist, Erie Coast Chest Physicians
Elyria, OH, USA
Industry: Health Care
Field: Medical Support Services
“Preventive care is important,” stresses health care professional Rose M. Rivera. “In order to have a good and long life, [people need] to take calculated steps to care for themselves.” In 2009, Ms. Rivera was provided with a rude awakening as to just how important this advice truly is, as she went in to have open-heart surgery. Many individuals hear that it is vital to maintain a healthy lifestyle, but sometimes need a good push in the right direction. Through her own experience and knowledge in the field of health care, Ms. Rivera is an active advocate for living a healthy life.
Ms. Rivera did not initially begin her career in the health care field. She worked in a variety of positions, including as a cashier, computer operator, stockroom and inventory control coordinator, and bank associate. After 32 years, she decided to venture on a new path, with the support of her husband Santiago and mentor Cindy Watkins. She currently uses her skills in medical assistance and coding in her role as a certified medical assistant and phlebotomist for Erie Coast Chest Physicians, where she prepares medical charts for patients.
In addition to serving Erie Coast Chest Physicians, Ms. Rivera is also an adjunct faculty for Lorain County Community College. She never considered teaching as a full-time profession until Ms. Watkins, her instructor at the time, talked her into working with a grant program. “I never realized how much I did like it,” she says, and ever since then she has enjoyed teaching. She coordinates with students in the medical laboratory, and assists them in taking vital signs and performing blood tests. In the future, she hopes to become more involved as an instructor in pharmacology, medical coding or medical assisting studies.
Ms. Rivera is the recipient of an Associate of Applied Science in Medical Administration and an Associate of Applied Science with a concentration in medical assistance and clinical studies from Lorain County Community College. She also earned an Associate of Arts in Business from the same institution in 1981. For the past 34 years, she has umpired baseball for youths aged nine to 18 years old. She is also a volunteer with the local fire department and police department, and a supporter of the American Heart Association.
Conversation with Rose M. Rivera, CMA, C.Ph.
Worldwide Publishing: On what topics do you consider yourself to be an expert?
Rose M. Rivera: When I work with patients, I can get more information out of them than the doctors can. They are comfortable with me and trust me.
What characteristics help to separate you from your competitors?
I have a unique ability to connect with patients in order to help them feel a sense of trust when talking to me. They open up to me.
What motivates you?
My parents raised me to be responsible and to take everything that I do to heart and do the best that I can with it. If that means going the extra mile, then that’s what I do. If my students are struggling, I will come in on days where I don’t get paid in order to help them.
What is the most difficult obstacle or challenge you have faced in pursuit of your goals?
Sometimes I feel that I don’t present a strong image. I am capable of so much. I have a very mild look, a soft look, and I come off as a shy individual.
What advice can you offer fellow members or others aspiring to work in your industry?
You have to have a determination to do what you want to do. You can’t let people say that you can’t do something; if you want to, you can learn anything. You have to fight for that, and [by] working hard and proving that you are capable, people will begin to realize that you can. Don’t let anyone underestimate your ability to do things.
Who have been your mentors or people who have greatly influenced you?