Lo-Wei Chang

Where are you from originally?
I was born in Lancashire, England. I moved to the US with my family when I was 15. Yes, I’m a Brit in Chinese clothing! Ha Ha!

What was your motivation for becoming a nurse?
I grew up in the restaurant business alongside my parents and siblings, and nursing was what my mother always wanted me to study. It wasn’t until she became ill with cancer and I nursed her until her passing that I realized it was my calling.

How long have you been a nurse?
11 years.

Tell us your thoughts about the Covid-19 pandemic and how it affected you, your family and friends?
This pandemic has prioritized what is important for me, and that is, if I’m not feeling well, I stay home and rest and recover, I won’t drag myself into work and infect my colleagues, mask or no mask. Also, I cherish every moment of life, even before the pandemic but more so now, I don’t waste it with silly things like hatred, jealousy, anger, and make sure my loved ones know I love them.

What’s the most rewarding moment/s you’ve had in your career?
I have rewarding moments daily, I love being an oncology nurse, and now I am one of the first apheresis nurses in Nevada, and I get to harvest stem cells and work with transplant patients too. When patients send gifts and cards and take the time to fill out iCares, and nominate me for the Daisy Award, it warms my heart to know that I made a difference in their cancer journey, and that feeling just fuels me to go above and beyond even more. I am so lucky that I can be there to comfort these patients when they need it the most.

What’s the best incentive for you to go above and beyond the call of duty at work?
I think I touched on this in the previous question, but it’s the genuine gratitude that all my patients show, they notice all the little things I do to make them comfortable and safe, and they appreciate my relentless pursuit of professionalism, even if my colleagues find that annoying at times, hee hee!

How do you decompress after a difficult day?
I love my dance lessons, I’ve been ballroom dancing for years. Before COVID I competed about four times a year, but right now, I just love to dance to enjoy it, maybe someday I will compete again, that was so much fun!

What do you do outside of work that makes you a better nurse?
I love to cook, I’m kind of crafty too, I love dancing and going on long walks with my darling husband Richard, who is my biggest fan and my best friend. I feel that I get to do the thing I love and it enriches my life so that I can give so much to nursing.

How is nursing different than you thought it would be?
Nursing is more than I thought it would be, it was definitely my calling to become an oncology nurse, and now that I am working on my master’s degree as a nurse practitioner, I see my future opportunities to do even more for my patients.

What is, in your opinion, the most important affect you have had on people’s lives?
The compassion of one gentle touch.