17:22 PM

Associate Spotlight: Have You Donated Blood Like Joan McCoy?


Billings, MT - Joan McCoy perfectly exhibits the characteristics of a motivated and influential leader at St. Vincent Healthcare. For over 27 years, Joan has been a member of the team. Currently a House Supervisor, she spends most of her time with associates, but she greatly values the relationships that she has had the opportunity to build over the course of her career.

“Nine out of 10 would say that the thing that they enjoy the most about their job is the people – I am one of those nine,” said Joan with a chuckle.

Joan originally became a nurse because she had a love for spending time with others and a niche for providing quality care. As her responsibility grew, she began to engage more so with associates than with patients, so she used her wealth of knowledge and experience to continue motivating her colleagues.

Over the course of 27 years, Joan certainly has a lot to be proud of. One thing that has stuck out the most, though, is the growth that she has seen within the organization.

“I am most proud of the growth in the nursing division and in the leadership team over the past decade,” she said.

Growth within St. Vincent can be attributed to an overlying theme: teamwork.

Joan acknowledged that during the month of January, teamwork is especially needed to raise awareness and donation for National Blood Donor Month.

Less than 10% of Americans donate blood, yet 1 in 7 patients entering a hospital have a need for it. Making a commitment this year to become a donor can save a life.

McCoy is a standout in the blood donor community. Most notably, she has donated 25 times. Professionals require that there are two months in between a given person’s last donation, allowing their bodies a chance to catch up.

St. Vincent’s blood drives have increased in an effort to combat the need for blood in Montana and throughout the United States, which has encouraged Joan to donate more often.

“Finding time as a mother to young children was challenging,” she said. “But I always made it a point to find time to donate.”

In addition to her own commitment to donating blood, McCoy has even recruited her husband, Terry, to donate blood with her.

“He’s been donating for 5 years now,” Joan said. “We actually celebrated Valentine’s Day a couple of years ago by donating blood together.”

When Joan first started her career, she was an Emergency Department Nurse and was exposed to patients who were in dire need of blood. As a universal donor, she has used this exposure and her blood type as motivation to help people in the community who may be in need of blood.

The Emergency Nurses Association is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2020, which also happens to be the international “Year of the Nurse.” Joan plans to continue donating through such a wonderful year and hopes that this will be the best year yet for donations.

“Our community needs donations and your efforts really can save lives,” McCoy said.

About SCL Health

SCL Health is a faith-based, nonprofit healthcare organization dedicated to improving the health of the people and communities we serve. Founded by the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth in 1864, our health network provides comprehensive, coordinated care through eight hospitals, more than 180 physician clinics, home health, hospice, mental health, and safety-net services in Colorado and the Montana Wyoming region.