Lorna Hylton-Webb: Serves difficult patients with patience

Photo by Jason Speakman

Ms. Hylton-Webb was not quite 30 when she emigrated from Jamaica. “I was a high school teacher there — English, history, and geography,” she says, “Nursing is my second career.”

She got her AAS at the College of Staten Island, began working in general surgery at Mount Sinai – Beth Israel and has been there 26 years. She earned her BSN from Mercy College.

“After five years as a floor nurse, I had enough,” she says and transferred to the Methadone Maintenance Program, now called The Opiate Treatment Program. She became the nurse manager, then acting director and now, director of nursing in that unit.

“I love my job even though the clientele are difficult to work with,” she says. “My heart goes out to the patients as I see how they struggle daily with their addiction. Many women do not seek treatment and are particularly vulnerable.”

This nurse has immense patience.

”I see how society judges and treats them. We all forget that they are our mothers, fathers, sisters, and brothers. Sometimes nurses are the only people our patients can and do talk to. We develop a close relationship with those in recovery,” Ms. Hylton-Webb says.

“And, they also have the same diseases people without drugs have; we do a lot of teaching and counseling.”

Her mother, the most influential person in her career, gave her good advice and motherly wisdom. “She told me to become a nurse and I would never be without a job no matter where I lived,” Ms. Hylton-Webb says. “She told me I could take care of her when she was old and sickly, which I did.”

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