Omayra Mansfield, MD, MHA, FACEP: Calm and Collected in the Face of Uncertainty

Posted on: May 4th, 2020

Women Who Inpsire – An AdventHealth for Women Series

Dr. Omayra Mansfield is an emergency medicine physician, Chief Medical
Officer at AdventHealth Apopka and AdventHealth Winter Garden, and
co-author of the book and workshop titled The Trust Transformation,
but what she wants you to know before all that is, she is a mother.

“I am Mom, first and foremost, to Elizabeth, 5, and Alexander, 2. We as women need to own that. They keep me so humble. They constantly remind me that we have so much to be grateful for,” she says.

Dr. Mansfield believes in practicing gratitude daily, even more so now during the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s something that’s helped her throughout her career as an emergency medicine physician, where she’s seen and dealt with it all.

“When everyone else is running away or scared or frightened, especially with patients, I like being the person that walks in the room and creates calm out of madness. I appreciate that in my specialty, we are in a very privileged position to take care of people on what could be the worse day of their life or take care of families on what could be the worse day of their lives because their loved one is sick,” she explains.

After serving in various leadership roles throughout her career, Dr. Mansfield assumed the position of Chief Medical Officer of AdventHealth Apopka and AdventHealth Winter Garden in early February — little did she know what was to come. In her first few weeks, she took the time to meet with all the leaders — clinical and non-clinical, formal and informal – to get to know them on a personal level. “Let me tell you how grateful I am that I took the time to do that because nobody anticipated we’d be in the state that we are in now,” Dr. Mansfield says. She can communicate more effectively because of those personal connections.

“Now it’s been a matter of leveraging those relationships trying to navigate these waters, being a constant source of communication for our clinical team and advocating for what their needs are as we anticipate what’s still to come,” she adds. “This is a marathon, not a sprint. We cannot look at this as any other natural disaster that some of us may have tended to. This is something that is ongoing and all-consuming and because of that I think we need to have a heightened level of awareness of where our heads are. We are going to get through this, but the question is how are we going to come out on the other end and what can we do to proactively maintain healthy habits.”

Professionally, this means making sure her staff — especially those on the frontlines — are practicing self-care. “Physicians often don’t do the best job of taking care of themselves, so I try to make it a point to make the lives of my colleagues better. When the opportunity came up to be a CMO, I saw that as an opportunity to be a chief physician advocate. Because if they’re taking better care of themselves, then I think they’re going to take better care of their patients,” she explains.

Personally, she is acutely aware of the risks she is taking by continuing to show up at work each day — even still maintaining shifts in the emergency department. “It gives me the right frame of reference as to what my colleagues are going through, especially right now,” she adds.

She and her husband, Frederick, who is a pediatric anesthesiologist and also practices at AdventHealth, constantly talk contingency plans, but provide as much normalcy at home as possible for their children. The first thing she does when she gets home is take her kids outside to enjoy their playground set. “We’re trying to keep our routine — we work out at least five days a week at 5am; my husband and I do CrossFit at home. Even though our days are very long, it’s those positive habits that help keep us focused,” she says. “It’s important to practice what you preach, and lead from the front.”

While her role evolves as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, she continues to stay true to her philosophies of practicing gratitude daily, being an advocate for her colleagues and building trusting relationships, personally and professionally. “Every day I am reminded that we have no idea how much time we have left on this earth and we need to make it count,” she says.

Doreen Forsythe, BSN, RN

One call to AdventHealth for Women’s Health Navigator Doreen Forsythe, BSN, RN, can help you coordinate all your health care. AdventHealth for Women understands the intricate role women play in their family’s healthcare decisions and needs. Doreen is a specially trained registered nurse who is available to help women access AdventHealth’s extensive network of services across Central Florida. This coordination specialist not only provides expert, clinical assistance, but also helps manage your overall care and identifies ways to speed up the process of scheduling physician appointments and procedures. The health navigator acts as your personal advocate — creating a seamless healthcare experience that focuses on health, wellness, hospitality and convenience.

As a registered nurse, Doreen has been a valued member of the AdventHealth team since 2001. Graduating from Villanova University in Pennsylvania, she has more than 15 years of experience in multiple nursing disciplines including cardiology, neurology, surgery and nursing education. No matter what kind of women’s health services you need, Doreen can connect you with the right doctors and resources to ensure you receive the best treatment available. This complimentary service is available to all women.

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