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ON THE FRONT LINES: ACC Nursing Alumna Stresses ‘It’s What We Do’

ACC alumna Angela Robbins, an ER nurse at Alamance Regional Medical Center. (Photo submitted).

ACC alumna Angela Robbins, an ER nurse at Alamance Regional Medical Center. (Photo submitted).

Meet Angela Robbins of Burlington, an alumna of Alamance Community College, and a nurse working the front lines of the current coronavirus pandemic crisis.

A graduate of ACC’s Medical Assisting program in 2007, Robbins worked in that field for three years before returning to the College in 2010 to pursue a career in nursing. She graduated with her Associate Degree in Nursing in 2016.

“More specifically, I wanted to be an ER (emergency room) nurse,” said Robbins. “I love the thrill of not knowing what is coming in next and being able to help people in their time of need.”

Upon earning her credential from ACC, Robbins began her career with Cone Health at Alamance Regional Medical Center in the ER. Within the past four years, she earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing through Western Carolina University, became a board-certified emergency nurse, and is now part of the leadership team in the ER as a charge nurse.

In August 2019 Robbins added educator to her resume when she was hired as a clinical instructor for Alamance Community College. But less than a year later, she and her fellow nurses are faced with an unprecedented health crisis that calls upon their dedication and skills.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has been a difficult time for nurses,” said Robbins. “Not only are we worried about our patients, we now have to worry about contracting this very dangerous virus and taking it home to our families. This concern has grown even more due to the lack of enough PPE [personal protective equipment] and having to adapt to new standards.”

Robbins herself faced the danger all those in the healthcare profession may encounter. In March, she was exposed to a patient who tested positive for the coronavirus.

“I had started showing similar symptoms to what the patient presented and my PCP [primary care physician] made the decision to test me. I was quarantined for seven days, until my test results came back. Thankfully I tested negative for COVID,” she said.

Robbins said she understands how nurses are now being hailed as heroes but, she said, the majority of those in her profession would say that they are just doing their job.

“It’s what we do, and what we have always done,” she said.