Kaiser Permanente Employee Inspires Son to Become a KPNW Nurse

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Special thanks to Kaiser Permanente Northwest for this story.

For Deb and Johnathan Baker, Kaiser Permanente is a family affair.

It all began in 1991, when Deb started her career as an X-ray technologist at Bess Kaiser Hospital in Portland. That's also the year and place she gave birth to her son, Johnathan.

Jump to August 2017 – with an RN degree and experience at another hospital system, Johnathan joined the medical-surgical nursing staff at Kaiser Permanente Westside Medical Center. His mother, a 25-year Kaiser Permanente employee, has worked in mammography at Westside since the hospital opened in 2013.

Like a proud mother, Deb says, "Johnathan is a very intelligent, kind, and caring person. I knew he would do well wherever he went, but I always hoped he would work for Kaiser Permanente." (The fact that his first day at Westside was on Deb's birthday, was just icing on the cake!)

Johnathan echoes the part about wanting to join the Kaiser Permanente staff, adding, "This stems from the fact that my mom has worked for Kaiser Permanente my entire life. I've seen how much she enjoys her job, and I wanted to experience that same satisfaction with an employer. I wanted to be part of the Kaiser culture, and part of a health care system that focuses on preventive care and community outreach."

How did Deb inspire her son’s career?

"When my kids were young, I used to come home from work and tell them about my day as an X-ray tech. They thought X-rays were cool!" Deb says. "I feel that my interesting stories, my great benefits at Kaiser Permanente, and my ability to work multiple places and shifts has inspired them. They know that health care is an interesting field and never boring – even after 25 years!"

Now, with five months under his belt, Johnathan says, "I love every second of my job."

But, he also admits, "My mom has gained me some fame around my fellow employees. It never fails that when my mom is coming to work at 7 a.m., and I'm getting ready to leave, she uses her Vocera and says, 'Morning, Bundle! How was your night?'"

And, more often than not, Deb's "bundle of joy" replies that his shift as a Registered Nurse at Kaiser Permanente was "Awesome!"