Vanderbilt Nursing

Surgical Stepdown/Surgical Trauma Stepdown


I'm Aaron Hirsch, BSN, RN.  I am the manager of the Surgical Stepdown/Surgical Trauma Patient Care unit located in 9 North of Vanderbilt University Hospital.

To work in the Surgical Stepdown unit, our nurses need to be prepared to care for post-operative patients typically requiring a high-level of monitoring, including airway management, vascular checks, cardiac monitoring, and trauma care (c-collar and braces).

Aaron Hirsch, BSN, RN
Surgical Stepdown/Surgical Trauma Patient Care
Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Unit Highlights:

Focus of Care Patient Demographic Number of Beds           Certifications of Our Nursing Staff
Post-operative patients in Thoracic, Emergency General Surgery and Trauma Surgery/Oncology services. Adults (18 and older) 27
  • BLS certification
  • EOR certification (Essentials of Resuscitation)
  • PCCN Progressive Care Certification

About Us:

Our unit specializes in post-surgical services in three core areas:

  • Trauma
  • Thoracic
  • Emergency General Surgery (EGS)

Our patient focus is to create a tailored plan of care that requires a unified team approach in order to provide excellent care to our patients.

A typical shift for our nurses includes caring for patients on over 16 different surgical specialties.  Care for these patients requires skills that include wound management, chest tube maintenance, blood administration, and tracheostomy care, just to name a few.

Our goal is to instill in both our patients and our staff that excellent patient care must be the norm and not the exception.

Awards and Recognitions:

  • CREDO Award Winner, Summer 2012 - Debbie Lamberth
  • PRC 5 Star Patient Satisfaction Award
    2006        2007        2010
  • Nurse Residency Program Best Team Award for the Adult Surgery Track
    Summer 2009          Summer 2010
  • Nurses' Week 2010, Rosamond Gabrielson Staff Nurse of the Year Award for VUH
    - Mary Kristen Hartley, BSN, RN
  •  VUH Nurse Educator of the Year, 2009 - Martha White, MSN, RN
  • We were featured at the Summer 2013 Elevate Assembly for the lowest 18 month RN Retention

Visit our websiteVisit our Website


Key Staff:

Interim Manager:

Assistant Manager:

Nurse Educator:

Administrative Assistant:

Marsha Pope, RN, ASN

Martha White, MSN, RN

Debbie Lamberth


Recruitment Information:

Click to ApplyIf you are interested in applying to Surgical Stepdown/Surgical Trauma Patient Care, please visit Work at Vanderbilt to see if there are currently any open positions.

                 Try using these keywords as searches to locate a position in this area:
                 surgical, stepdown, trauma, nursing, care partner
Nurse Residency ProgramThis unit/area is a part of the Adult Surgical Track in the Nurse Residency Program.
If you are a new grad, please visit our Nurse Residency Program section for more information.


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To update information on this page, please email sherri.stringfellow@vanderbilt.edu

This page was last updated August 19, 2014 and is maintained by