Christmas workers make merry best of it

December 26, 2012
Carmen Morales, center, and Barbara Kaess, right, share a laugh with trauma tech Boris Chung, on left

IN THE NEWS: The Orange County Register visited the emergency department at UC Irvine Medical Center on Christmas day for an article about people who work on holidays:

In the emergency room, Christmas morning brought car accidents, transfers of patients needing UC Irvine’s trauma capabilities and a heart attack, as well as everyday maladies such as fevers.

“It’s always busy here,” said Sylvia Chavarria, 53, who has been a nurse at the hospital for 25 years.

Christmas trees and a Menorah decorated the nurses’ station, and the staff showed its holiday spirit with colorful socks, blinking necklaces and Santa hats. To keep the mood festive, the nurses planned a potluck in the break room.

Mostly, though, the sights and sounds of the ER were typical. Families waited nervously with their loved ones.

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