Clinician Close-Up Series: Sean Roche FNP, SteadyMD Nurse Practitioner, and Telehealth Advocate
Our team of physicians, nurses, and therapists are at the heart of our mission at SteadyMD to deliver high-quality online care experiences. They’re the lifeblood of our organization, but they also have lives of their own. In our “Clinician Close-Up” series, we sit down with SteadyMD clinicians to discover the depth of people behind the practice. Here we talk to SteadyMD nurse practitioner Sean Roche, who shares his perspective on how SteadyMD is different from other telehealth platform companies.
When did you decide to make healthcare your career?
I became interested in healthcare when I was young and in the ER with a family member who was not receiving the care from staff I felt she deserved. The clinician treating her was very brief with her. It really highlighted to me at the time there was a need for caring clinicians. My mom was also a nurse at this time, so I had a lot of influence in the nursing field. That moment in time in the ER really drove my career aspirations into the medical field. I eventually became a nurse with the goal of becoming a nurse practitioner. So really the root cause for wanting to pursue a career in this field came from trying to establish a caring aspect to being a clinician.
Why did you join SteadyMD and when did you first become interested in telehealth?
I first became interested in telehealth when I saw how the opportunity for virtual care expanded our ability to reach populations that can’t access healthcare. There’s a huge need for those patients waiting to be seen in primary care and urgent care settings to help address current inequities in healthcare.
“Virtual care to me is like a pressure release valve for the medical community.”
It opens up a new avenue for surplus patients to be treated, but also creates a new career opportunity for clinicians. Virtual care increases the patient experience and provider satisfaction. As a nurse practitioner, it’s a big deal to me to be virtually invited into my patients’ homes. It’s a huge icebreaker to develop long-term relationships.
I first pursued telehealth with another company, but their platform wasn’t what I had envisioned telemedicine being. There wasn’t much functionality to their platform, and I wasn’t provided the type of training or support that I expected.
Then I found SteadyMD. What really got me excited about SteadyMD was its delivery model. The platform and projects they discussed with me really matched how I see healthcare delivery through telehealth. I see it as really caring about patients and taking the time to give them what they need.
How was your experience applying to join the SteadyMD clinician network?
My first impression was that every individual I met with during the process, from clinicians to the administrative team, was sincere and genuine. I was excited to learn the functionality of the SteadyMD platform, meet the other clinicians and work with the administrative staff.
“SteadyMD to me is a leader and innovator in telehealth medicine.”
It’s like a marriage between technology and healthcare. Since I’ve joined the SteadyMD team, every interaction I’ve had has been positive.
What does a typical SteadyMD day look like for you and how does it compare to your previous in-person work?
It depends on the partner program I’m working on. I’m currently working on two programs. One is very teamwork driven. The clinicians on this program have amazing minds, and it’s a very supportive, communicative environment. This partner program also has a platform where we can ask questions or get advice from other clinicians. Since we’re all working remotely, I can get answers late at night from someone working on the west coast. It amazes me how quickly I get responses!
The second program I work on is Covid Check Colorado. This work has been important to me because we get to reach out to people newly diagnosed with COVID-19. There’s a lot of fear and questions on their part, and a lot of reassurance and education on our part that we can provide. We provide a lot of value during these visits.
The flexibility is what’s different from my previous work. I’m able to work any 24-hour shift I want, selected across 7 days of the week, so I am able to take my kids to and from school. Right now, I’m working about 30 hours a week, all telehealth.
“SteadyMD allows me to tailor my work schedule around my personal life rather than the other way around.”
Tell us about a moment when you felt proud of your work at SteadyMD.
I recall seeing a patient recently for a skin infection. She was rather surprised that I took the time to ask her such in-depth details about her health history. This revealed some medical conditions she had and a current medication she was on. Knowing this information made a huge difference in the pharmaceutical therapy we chose that day. We developed such a great rapport, that it led to her sharing her frustrations with me regarding a recent in-office medical visit experience she had felt rushed during. Patient appointments like this one is the reason I went into healthcare.
“At SteadyMD, taking the time to get to know the patient leads to informed treatment, trust, relationship building, and safe practice.”
We’re able to really cater to our patients and dedicate more time to them. We want to get the appointment finished in a timely manner, but we’re not rushed and that’s huge to me.
What do you do for fun and if you weren’t an NP, what would you be?
I live in Durango, Colorado with my wife and two children. We love exploring the San Juan mountains. Mountain biking through the San Juan mountains with a community of my neighbors is my new hobby. I feel blessed to live in this area.
I love being a nurse practitioner. If I couldn’t do that I would be a full-time dad and join a volunteer network in my community. Between fatherhood and volunteering, I think I would be very content. That’s my retirement plan from healthcare.
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