When Brandy Loomis started her new job recently at Sunflower Diversified Services, she was excited to become reacquainted with some familiar faces.
Loomis is the new full-time registered nurse at Sunflower, a non-profit agency that serves people with intellectual delays and disabilities.
“I worked here 15 years ago in residential services,” Loomis said. “I was here a few years, and later went to nursing school.
“It has been great to see some of our clients who remember me from back then,” she continued. “This just felt right and I thought this was where I needed to be.”
In her new job as head of the Medical Services Department, Loomis oversees all medical services; ensures appointments are made at a variety of doctor, dental and optometry offices; and arranges for mental-health care.
In addition, Loomis oversees medication management and provides staff training in that area. She also offers a staff course that concentrates on healthy living.
In the healthy-living sessions, topics include proper nutrition, including special diets; exercise; how to transport people to and from wheelchairs; seizures; and personal hygiene.
A regular part of Loomis’ schedule involves assessing people with medical complaints. “These include the normal things we all go through from time to time, such as sore throat, earache or a minor injury. We often can take care of the problem with a little first aid but when someone needs to see a doctor, we make it happen.”
At any given time, approximately 70 adult Sunflower clients rely on the agency’s medical services. Loomis’ staff includes a medical support manager and two medical support specialists.
“This is a great team that offers compassionate and professional care and treatment,” Loomis commented. “We all want the same thing – the health and well-being of our clients.”
While her previous experience at Sunflower was a factor in accepting the Sunflower position, Loomis also noted she enjoys “out-of-the-box nursing. This is unlike anything else; it is not like working in a hospital or doctor’s office.
“We care for our clients and offer a variety of therapies in their own homes or at one of Sunflower’s sites. We are accessible every day, which saves many unnecessary visits to a doctor. That is the beauty of this service that Sunflower provides.”
Loomis is a 2000 graduate of Great Bend High School and earned an associate’s degree in nursing from Barton Community College. She is planning to pursue a bachelor’s in nursing.
Her background includes clinical and mental-health nursing.
Previously, Brandi Demel was the full-time RN at Sunflower; now she is director of case management.
“I had been training Brandy for her new job and was very comfortable in passing the torch,” Demel said. “She is smart and has excellent nursing skills, along with a great rapport with our clients.
“I admit it was a hard decision to let go of the medical department. But Brandy is using what we had accomplished and taking it to the next level.”
Sunflower serves infants, toddlers and adults in Barton, Pawnee, Rice, Rush and Stafford counties. It is in its 52ndyear.