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Finding the Perfect Fit: A Transplant Nurse Story

Leigh Yocum, RN: Heart and soul of our kidney transplant program

Leigh Yocum: Heart and Soul of Our Kidney Transplant Program

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be part of a team that truly changes lives? Meet Leigh Yocum, RN, a transplant coordinator at Lehigh Valley Hospital–Cedar Crest, whose incredible journey and passion for transplant nursing have made her a standout at Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN). Her story is a testament to the profound impact our team members have on patients every day, and it might just inspire you to join our mission of giving second chances.

“The best part of this job is seeing the changes that patients make and the strides they take in their treatment. You build long-term relationships with them, which is truly special.” - Leigh Yocum, RN

Yocum’s journey with LVHN began back in 2001 as a certified nursing assistant. After graduating from nursing school in 2006, she continued in our cardiac intensive care unit, where she developed a love for critical care nursing. Her career took an exciting turn when she joined the Gift of Life, where she discovered her passion for transplant nursing. We were thrilled when Yocum returned to LVHN in 2012 as a transplant coordinator, bringing her expertise back to our team.

Making a difference, one patient at a time

As a transplant coordinator, Yocum helps guide patients through the complex process of receiving a donated kidney. She’s with them every step of the way, offering support, expertise and a whole lot of heart. For her, this role is all about giving people a second chance at life, and she finds it incredibly fulfilling.

“The best part of this job is seeing the changes that patients make and the strides they take in their treatment. You build long-term relationships with them, which is truly special,” Yocum says. She shared that in her role she sees the profound impact on the families of deceased donors, who find comfort in knowing their loved one’s legacy lives on.

The challenges and rewards of transplant nursing

Yocum is the first to admit that transplant nursing is a challenging specialty. “It requires a deep love for people and finding value in the work because it’s busy and you’re often on call,” she explains. But despite the demands, Yocum and her team prioritize work-life balance and support each other’s needs.

One of the things Yocum loves most about working at LVHN is the diversity of the patient population. From individuals on Medicaid struggling with housing to corporate executives, the variety of experiences enriches the role of a nurse here. “You can truly experience it all as a nurse at LVHN,” Yocum says, highlighting the inclusive and varied nature of our health care environment.

Join our amazing team

Yocum’s story is a testament to the rewarding and impactful nature of transplant nursing at LVHN. If you’re a transplant coordinator looking to make a meaningful difference in patients’ lives, we invite you to join our team. Here, you’ll find a supportive community, a diverse patient population and the opportunity to help patients navigate one of the most critical journeys of their lives.

At LVHN, we believe in second chances and the incredible power of compassionate care. And we’re on the lookout for more remarkable colleagues, just like the incredible Leigh Yocum.

Explore career opportunities with LVHN’s transplant program and become a part of a team that values dedication, diversity and the profound impact of quality health care.

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