KU Health System
KANSAS CITY – When most people get summoned to the boss’s office, they tend to think the worst. But for 18 very special employees at The University of Kansas Health System, it was anything but that. Each was told they’d been selected to be a guest of The Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida as they go for their second straight Super Bowl win on February 7.
These workers were chosen to recognize their unwavering commitment to their community throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. They are among thousands of frontline healthcare professionals attending this year’s game as part of the NFL’s efforts to recognize healthcare workers and promote vaccination.
Every healthcare professional in attendance will have received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. In addition, the NFL has created special guidelines and processes to ensure the pillars of infection control will be followed.
These are the 18 health system workers attending the game and a little about each one.
- Kelsey Belzer, RN, HaysMed COVID-19 Care Unit, Kelsey has worked at The University of Kansas Health System HaysMed Campus, for almost 7 years. Kelsey currently works in the Medical Care Unit (MCU-COVID unit) where she has been since June 2020, taking care of COVID-19 patients who require intensive care. Flying to the Super Bowl will be her first time on an airplane.
- Rachael Liesman, PhD – Clinical Laboratory. In March, she led a small but spirited group of laboratory professionals to bring COVID-19 testing to the KU Health System, the first hospital in Kansas City to do so. “I’m really excited and I’m humbled, there are just so many people in this institution, the health system that have really given it their all throughout the pandemic.”
- John Sorrick, RRT – Respiratory Therapy. He was a scuba instructor before he got into respiratory therapy. His parents encouraged him to do something meaningful and working with COVID-19 patients has been the most rewarding work he’s done.
- Sara Ladner, RN – Emergency Department. Sara has been a nurse for five years. She is a born and raised Kansas City girl and a lifelong Chiefs fan and takes pride in being a part of Chiefs Kingdom.
- Dominic Johnson, RN- Unit 61 ICU. While he was originally hired as a new graduate Med/Surg nurse, he was transitioned to working solely with COVID-positive patients within his first year of being a nurse due to the ferocity of the pandemic. Not only has Dominic seen the toll of this disease with his patients firsthand but their families and his coworkers as well. Throughout this difficult time, he says “Unit 61, a Covid ICU, has been a shining example of strength; each individual knows we can count on each other and understands we are in this together.”
- Shannon Schroeder, Clinic Manager, South Kansas City Medical Pavilion. Shannon Schroeder is the Infusion Center Nurse Manager. She has been a nurse at TUKHS since 2007, where she came to as her first and only nursing job because her dad told her she “couldn’t work anywhere else.” She is proud to provide care to patients at TUKHS. She has been instrumental in setting up the process for monoclonal antibody infusions for patients with Covid and providing care to these patients with skill and compassion.
- Rick Blevins, RN, Community Revenue Supervisor, He’s worked for The University of Kansas Health System since 1997. “Most of my nursing career at the health system has been spent working in the Emergency Department. For the past five years, I’ve had the pleasure of having a primary role which involves overseeing the first aid stations and providing care for the fans attending sporting events and concerts at locations such as Arrowhead Stadium and the other venues supported by the health system.”
- Dru Coleman, RN, Medical Telemetry Dru Coleman is a nurse on Unit 62, a Medical Telemetry patient care unit, at TUKHS. She has worked at the health system since 2018. She has taken care of Covid patients during the pandemic and is noted for always connecting with patients as people, looking beyond the illness that brings the patient in to her care. Dru is also attending graduate school to become a nurse practitioner.
- Lauren Timmons, RN, Labor and Delivery. She lost her grandma, who was a major Chiefs fan, last year before the Chiefs went to the Super Bowl. Her grandmother’s initials were LV. So, when she found out the numbers of this year’s Super Bowl, she felt it was meant to be.
- Marissa Larson, medical lab scientist, Laboratory. She’s responsible for COVID-19 Molecular testing. She was honored to be surprised for former Chiefs player Dante Hall. She says, “It’s an honor to be going to the Super Bowl and it’s an honor to care for Covid-19 patients.”
- Kevin Ohlandt, radiologic technologist, Radiology. Kevin provides patient care in multiple areas of the hospital that Radiology serves such as the OR, ED, ICU’s.
- Michelle Rotrock (Fessler), RRT – Respiratory Therapy, Michelle approaches care of patients during the pandemic with empathy, bravery, and humor. You can count on Michelle to take great care of COVID patients while adding in some light-hearted fun. Not only is Michelle a fantastic RT, but she is also a die hard Chiefs fan who will undoubtedly cheer loud enough that you might think the whole RT department is at the game!
- Kellie Hardy, RN, GI Endoscopy. Kellie is a valued member of our interventional endoscopy team and has been an integral preceptor for the team over the last 10 years. “I’m so ecstatic, it doesn’t seem real! I was born and raised here. My Dad was there for the first Super Bowl way back in the day”.
- Richard Frazier, Environmental Services. Richard has been keeping the health system clean for two years. “They paged me first and I kind thought I did something wrong. I’m a very diehard Chiefs fan. I’m very excited to see them go back to back and I have faith in them to win this Super Bowl.”
- Cheyenne Maxwell, patient care assistant, Med Transplant ICU. “I assist the nurses with patient turns, transportation and answer call lights. I carry the Rapid Response pager, so I also respond to Rapids, Code Blues, and perform EKGs as needed.”
- Lewis Satterwhite, MD, Pulmonology. He WAS scheduled to work on Super Bowl Sunday caring for COVID-19 patients in the ICU. “I haven’t been to a live event in a long time, so it is still all sinking in a little bit and I’m really looking forward to it.”
- Chris Brown, MD, Hospitalist. “When they pulled me to the side I just kind of wanted to scream in the halls. But I kept it calm. To have the responsibility and then the health care system, I guess, trust that I could represent them in the best possible way…it’s humbling.”
- Ryan Jacobsen, MD, Emergency Department. Dr. Jacobsen has provided patient care in the Emergency Department throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and provides medical oversight to approximately 900 firefighters, EMTs, and Paramedics.
Click on the video for interviews with several of the 18 who are going. Also included are a variety of spirit videos of coworkers cheering the Chiefs, b-roll inside the ICU where COVID-19 patients are treated and video of NICU babies wearing Chiefs gear.