An intensive care unit nurse figured out that her new colleague is the baby she cared for 28 years ago.
Vilma Wong took care of Brandon Seminatore when he was a little baby in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Brandon was born at 26 weeks. He didn't have the best chances of living, but Vilma worked her hardest to help Brandon thrive. Vilma has worked at the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital in Palo Alto, California, for 35 years. Wong loves her job and has enjoyed her life in the NICU.
The 54-year old Wong was so excited to figure out that the new doctor at the hospital, Brandon Seminatore, was the baby she took care of early on in her career. Wong helped Brandon survive and now Brandon is a prominent doctor.
Vilma saw the list of doctors while making her rounds. She recognized the young doctor's last name, but she wasn't sure where she knew the name from. Vilma explained, "I got very suspicious because I remember being the primary nurse to a baby with the same last name." Vilma approached Brandon and she asked him if his dad was a police officer. Vilma was trying to figure out why she might have recognized the last name. There was a huge silence and then Brandon asked if she was Vilma. Brandon's mother told him to look for a nurse named Vilma, but he was hesitant because he was sure Vilma would have been retired by then. Vilma went on to say, "I was in shock initially but overjoyed to know that I took care of him almost 30 years ago and now he’s a pediatric resident to the same population he was part of when he was born."
Vilma is happily still working her usual shifts in the NICU. She loves when she gets to meet old patients and says that it's such a big reward. Vilma admits that she has no plans of retiring anytime soon and plans to continue doing what she loves as long as she can. Brandon was so excited to be able to meet the nurse that helped him when he was a premature baby, “meeting Vilma was a surreal experience,’’ he said. “She cares deeply for her patients, to the point that she was able to remember a patient’s name almost three decades later.’’ We need more nurses like Vilma.