Lyn Tirona

My Healthcare Story

Migrating from the Philippines, where healthcare takes a backseat in our day to day lives due to scarcity of resources available for all of us in need, coming here in the US as a Registered Nurse, has opened my heart and eyes of how vast the healthcare resources are but is never really accessible to everyone. As a mom of 2 young kids, I fear for their future and I don’t want them to go through making a choice of seeking healthcare as a human right versus food and other basic needs. Looking back to a painful experience, when my father was hospitalized for complications of Diabetes, it was heart wrenching for me and my family to decide against our will to bring our ailing father home from the hospital, because we can no longer afford and sustain the ginormous hospital bills and medication costs.

As a nurse and a patient advocate, I feel compelled to come out and speak the truth. As I always tell my patients who compliments me of my ethical/professional practice at the bedside, my response is always – “I may be the one taking care of you and my other patients this time, but sometime in the future, reality is, I will become a patient myself and I don’t want my family to be burdened by not knowing where to get the resources needed for my care.”

I used to live by a common “Filipino” trait of “sucking it up”; “be thankful of whatever you have”; “obey first before you complain” – and with all the stories and personal experiences staring/confronting me at work and in the community, I believe I cannot “shut up” anymore! I have to stand up and “walk my talk” since I am first and foremost a “patient advocate”. I am fighting for Healthcare as a human right, fighting for what is rightfully ours.

City/Town: Roseville, California
Organization: California Nurses Association