Bertha Moses

Bertha Moses,
Transcript Section 9

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BERTHA:  First we had to get it -- I had to get it ready.  I had to buy the sheets and blankets and pots and pans and just stock the shelf for everything, order -- after we ordered the things for the patient. 

I don't know how to run it, it's like there's no -- nobody run it before me.  In fact, I just kind of had an idea.  And someone tell me, go down and talk with Dottie Silver.  And Dottie Silver. 

So I went down and she kind of outline and admission forms and gave me a supply of that.  And then after that, I went back and one person was keeping track of me from other place, trying to be really helpful. 

Everybody was helping me.  And then this lady, she asked me.  And I told her, oh, I was down and met with Dottie Silver, and I got some information and so I feel much better. 

And she said, oh, nobody goes to visit with her.  She's way up and how could I.  But I didn't know that.  Someone say I could, so I went.  I always think about that. 

And then after that one lady asked me, one Native lady asked me, she lived in Fairbanks, she asked me how in the world did you get that job anyways.  I was kind of offended, so I said I guess I was most qualified, that's why.  I know I shouldn't act smart with her, but I felt offended so that's what I told her. 

So -- and then I worry, I don't sleep good, how will I take care of the paperwork.  Then one day we went to church.  Before that I prayed about it and we went to church and this priest's wife, I'm coming up there, hi, Bertha, I'm so happy you got that job.  You'll be so good to the people, she said.  At that time I said thank you. 

And we went home to the hospital and had lunch, and toward evening, I just remember what she said, and I start to laugh, and I told my husband, I'm worried about the paperwork and it's people I'm going to be working with.  I could work with people, why I worry about paperwork.  People is important.
And I felt way better.  I thought, I have lots of confidence again. 

And then after that, some -- some guy working at Chief Andrew Isaac, I think he was director or I can't remember what was his title, he said -- he said, you have a very hard job, very.  I said, you think so?  He say, yeah.  Yes.  I was thinking, I wonder what -- what am I getting myself into. 

But it went all right.  After a couple months and Dave Mathers was coming, he said I could -- I could sign up for how many years I want to work there.  I said, I'll try 11 years.  And that's what I did. 

It was good experience.  I get to meet lots of people, make lot of friends.  But then a lot of times it's sad, too, because you get so used to seeing the same people coming around, and then they go to the hospital for the last time, it's kind of sad, too. 

MARLA:  And they named the hospital after you now? 

BERTHA:  Yes. 

MARLA:  Is that correct? 

BERTHA:  Yes. 

MARLA:  When did that happen? 

BERTHA:  That happened in '95.  Yeah. 

MARLA:  You must have done wonderful things for that hospital. 

BERTHA:  Must be.  I don't know. 

MARLA:  And do you think that your community health aide training, being a community health aide helped you in that job? 

BERTHA:  Yeah, a lot it helped me.  Once in awhile I have to measure a patient's medicine, some elderly people can't see and to measure their insulin or something.  So I have fun with that, too. 

I read their medications for them if they can't understand.  And that really helped me, telling them what each medicine is for.  That's when they bring it to me.  If they don't bring it to me, I don't bother them. 

MARLA:  Well, that -- that sounds like you were very helpful.