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Testa celebrates long career with Mineral Community Hospital

by MONTE TURNER
Mineral Independent | July 3, 2024 12:00 AM

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Baby Boomer women on average hold 12.1 jobs in their lifetime, while men hold 12.5 jobs. According to Zippia, a national job search engine, the average American worker has 12 jobs throughout a lifetime.

Their stats are close, so, working with those numbers, what happens when you place Jan Testa into their equations? 

Testa retired from Mineral Community Hospital last Friday after 33 years and three months. 

“It’s here,” she said. “It’s hard to believe it, but it’s here.”

Testa has been the Medical Supply Procurement Queen delivering boxes, bags and bottles up and down the hallways with her dolly. Ordering what MCH needs before it’s needed through a complex system that Angie Parkin will now pilot. If Testa’s vendor is out of what she needs, her search-system for another supplier is from networking all of years she has been in the captain’s seat. Plus, she has been a key medical aid in the surgery room for certain procedures, which she will continue to do.

Laurell Chambers, CEO, had Testa on an ivory pillar at her retirement party Friday on the lawn of MCH.  

“Jan is amazing. Researching. Finding us the cheapest deals. Keeping our par-level (Periodic Automatic Replacement) supply up. It says a lot about her inventory awareness as we never ran out of anything during Covid and I don’t know of very many places that can say that. All from being proactive. Keeping us in gloves and masks and everything we needed. She’s been incredible.” 

Chambers is also a PA-C who is a Superior native with 24 years at MCH coming this September.

Another Superior native, Stacy Conrow-Ververis, is the CFO and she has 22 years working in the MCH administration. 

“I reiterate what Laurel said as she pays such attention to detail. She keeps the supplies in the house and that’s what we need.” 

She stated that her continued assistance with surgeries is appreciated along with her willingness to help Parkin. “She’s taking a computer home and agreed to help if needed on supplies,” she laughed.

As most retirees know, it takes time to adjust to a new routine and calibrate your system. Testa said once she realizes that she is no longer in the work force, her immediate plans are to spend more time with her family. 

“Mike (her husband) and I are going to do a little traveling. I’d like to go over to the Oregon coast for a while after the summer rush, in September or October. And then just hang out at home and clean and move furniture. We want to do some remodeling and things have to be moved around, but I will enjoy this as I’m not on a time schedule.” 

When asked if she knows if anyone had worked as long at MCH as she has, she said, “Yes, Chris Watson. Hers (retirement) is coming up. Heck, she was Chris Ragsdale when she started here and that was forever ago. Oh, and Gail (Rice) was around 35 or 36 years when she retired.” 

Rice nodded her head and said something about “Only Jan would remember something like that.”

Testa was telling a story about one of the pictures on the big, oversized memory-card the staff made for her and one picture showed her with big goofy glasses smiling at the camera. 

“Oh my gosh! That’s the one that Kathy Jones took and made copies and plastered the place with on my 40th birthday. Mike had an appointment that day and when he walked into the office to register the gal said, ‘Did you know that it was Jan’s birthday?’ As he looked around at all of the pictures he slowly said, ‘Well, I do now.’ They were everywhere!”

She told everyone how much she appreciated their friendship and reminded them that she’ll still be around when needed in surgery so there is no reason for tears. And then she cried.