Essentia NICU Nurse Gets Surprise Celebration

Vicki Holtan has been a NICU nurse for 40 years

FARGO, N.D. — Vicki Holtan, who’s been a NICU nurse for 40 years, got quite the surprise from her family and co-workers.

“We said we’re going to a Redhawks game, we’re at the lake… We said we’re going to take a day away from the lake and go to a Redhawks game, which is probably a little suspicious but she went along with it,” Paul Holtan, Vicki’s husband, said.

“It’s overwhelming. I’ve worked with an amazing group of people over the last 40 years and that’s just made my work my joy. It’s just amazing people that I’ve worked with,” Vicki said.

Holtan has been with Essentia since 2000. She even has a daughter and daughter–in–law who have become NICU nurses too.

“Just to see them carrying on the love and passion I have is really awesome,” she said.

She says the job isn’t always easy, but working with babies and their loved ones makes it all worthwhile.

“We don’t get to converse with our babies. We converse with the families and help them with the long, tough journey through the NICU. It’s scary and really hard, and I appreciate that more after becoming parent myself,” Vicki said.

One doctor says in the busy world of the NICU, it was comforting to have a nurse like Holtan, who found this kind of work relaxing.

“I find it very relaxing to be around her. Saving lives is what we’re trying to do and that’s what we do very happily and it’s fun to do,” Scott Mutchler, a neonatologist at Essentia, said.

He says Holtan has always been someone who’s prepared.

“You can’t give an award for the kinds of things she does. It’d be almost like getting a Medal of Congress or something like that because what she does around here over the last several years has been extraordinary,” Mutchler said.

Holtan started her career in Minneapolis and moved to Moorhead over 20 years ago.

Categories: Health, Local News, North Dakota News