Hospital Week spotlight: Meet Sally McDowell

Providing clean and sterile operating rooms isn’t something staff members in the TMC’s Environmental Services department “strive” to do. They have to do it.

For every patient. Every surgery. Every day.

Sally McDowell TMC Environmental Services associate

Sally McDowell,
TMC Environmental Services associate

It’s a responsibility that can’t be overlooked, and is taken very seriously by Environmental Services associate Sally McDowell and her team. McDowell primarily works in the third floor of the TMC Orthopaedic and Surgical Tower, where all orthopaedic surgeries take place.

“In addition to cleaning and sterilizing the operating rooms after every surgery, we have to essentially deep clean every OR once a day. This includes cleaning the walls, the ceiling, and wiping down every single piece of equipment that’s in that room,” explained McDowell.

McDowell started working at TMC about a year ago, when she and her husband grew tired of Michigan winters and decided to move to Tucson. She had been an orderly at a Michigan hospital years ago, and was excited to work in health care once again.

“My job is to provide peace of mind to our patients and their families that their operating room is a clean and sterile environment. I do my part to ensure a positive patient experience,” said McDowell.

The most challenging part? Her work literally never ends. “There are always patients who need to be taken care of, and there are always areas of the hospital that need to be cleaned and sterilized,” she said.

In the short time she’s been with TMC, McDowell’s work ethic has made her a leader on her team, according to Environmental Services manager Gil Loera. “Sally is our go-to person on the third floor ORs. She has done a remarkable job in honing an enviable EVS OR team on the third floor. She has taken charge, and verifies that everyone follows processes and procedures as well as ensuring that she communicates any needs or concerns to the EVS management staff on a daily basis. We are extremely fortunate and delighted to have her on our team!”

In what can often be a thankless and overlooked job, McDowell said it’s always nice to receive a pat on the back.

“People will tell me, ‘We don’t know what we’d do without you!’” And that, she said, is one of the best things about working at TMC – knowing that she is making a difference in the health of our patients and the Southern Arizona community.

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Tucson Medical Center | 5301 E. Grant Road | Tucson, Arizona 85712 | (520) 327-5461
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