Baptist DeSoto Nurse Celebrated 85th Birthday, 53 Years in Nursing

Elsie Hayes, RN in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit at Baptist DeSoto, turned 85 years old in January, and her fellow team members surprised her with a birthday party! Elsie has been working as a nurse for 53 years and has no immediate plans to retire. “I take it a day at a time,” said Elsie, who now works on a PRN or “as needed” basis.

“Ms. Elsie is a remarkable role model. She has a genuine soul made for helping her patients and her co-workers. She will frequently pick up days or change days around to help those in our department,” said Baptist DeSoto Director Patti Beasley, RN.

Elsie started her first nursing job in 1970 in the ICU at Saint Joseph Hospital, which later merged with Baptist Memorial Health Care. She switched to working with post-op patients in recovery in 1986. In 1998, Elsie started caring for post-op patients at Baptist DeSoto.

What Elsie enjoys most about nursing is the people. “I just love taking care of folks,” said Elsie. She has stayed with Baptist DeSoto for so many years partly because she enjoys working at a smaller hospital that feels “more like family.”

During her long nursing career, Elsie said that technology has been the biggest change she’s seen. “We used to have paper charts. Now everything is done on the computer,” noted Elsie.

“Ms. Elsie’s generous nature allows her to share her world and work experiences with those around her. She has so many great stories about life, love and nursing,” shared Head Nurse Stephanie DeLuca, RN at Baptist DeSoto.  “Everyone loves working with her. I know she is an inspiration to all of us!”