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NAON Member Highlight - Kathy Weich

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I have been a member of the National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses since 1992. I joined NAON early in my nursing career to develop my knowledge and understanding of orthopaedic nursing practices.

I attended my first NAON Congress in 1992 in Cincinnati, Ohio and have attended 20 other congresses through the years. I am looking forward to this year’s Congress, to be held in Nashville, Tennessee. I enjoy attending Congress each year, as it is a wonderful opportunity to network, providing me time to reconnect with orthopaedic colleagues I know and a chance to meet other orthopaedic nurses from across the country. Congress also provides excellent educational updates that are useful in my everyday practice. I always return home from Congress feeling inspired and re-energized!

I began my career in orthopaedic nursing purely by accident. After graduating from the University of Maryland School of Nursing, one of the few openings at the closest community hospital was in orthopaedics. Having had a previous knee injury that required surgery, my interest in orthopaedics peaked. Through the years, I myself have required multiple orthopedic surgeries, including a total knee replacement in June 2013.  My experiences as an orthopedic patient have benefitted me as a nurse, as well as the patients I care for.

My nursing career spans 27 years, including 10 years working as a charge nurse of a 40-bed orthopaedic/med-surg hospital unit, and the last 17 years with an eight-doctor orthopaedic practice in Rockville, Maryland where I currently work as a clinic supervisor.

I am proud to share that I have held the title of orthopaedic nurse certified since 1992. In 2010, I was a recipient of a Stryker Congress Scholarship. I have served NAON in several capacities including  chapter delegate at Congress 2000-2005, president of the Nation’s Capital chapter-#127 in May 2003-May 2005 and chapter treasurer for the past two years. I have also volunteered as a monitor at most of the congresses I have attended. 

In my spare time, my husband Bill and I like to travel. Last fall, we visited friends in Naples, Italy, then toured Rome, Venice and Florence on our own. This year, as we celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary, we will return to our honeymoon spot in Aruba! We are active with the Knights of Columbus and their various activities. I also play bunco once a month. We enjoy frequent get-togethers with our families and friends, and have a personable black cat named Magic.

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