Women Tech Council recognizes Intermountian Healthcare Operator, Seraphine Kapsandoy-Jones
The Women Tech Council (WTC) has awarded Seraphine Kapsandoy-Jones with the Operational Excellence award. Kapsandoy-Jones is the Chief Clinical Information Officer at Intermountain Healthcare.
“I lead a team of clinical informatics analysts,” said Kapsandoy-Jones. “So these are clinicians as well as non-clinicians who focus on making technology better for our clinicians and our patients on the front lines.”
Kapsandoy-Jones was noticed by the Women in Technology Council while working with clinical caregivers to use technology to improve patient outcomes. After working in pediatrics in Intermountain Primary Children's Hospital's Rapid Treatment unit, she became interested in how to teach parents proper care for children after surgery. She realized there was no clear process to follow up with parents and children during the healing process. That’s when she created a book and video to teach parents and nurses about post-surgery care and follow up.
Kapsandoy-Jones is originally from Nairobi, Kenya. Her father died when she was just 13 years old, but she explains he always “wanted her to get the best education possible outside of Kenya.” She attended an all girls Catholic high school in Kenya before receiving a scholarship to attend the University of Mississippi for Women.
While her tuition to the University of Mississippi for Women was covered, she still needed the money to travel to the United States. “When I look at a challenge, I don’t think of the impossible. I think ‘How will I get through this?’ and ‘How can I fix the situation?’” Kapsandoy-Jones describes herself as a very hard working person, and getting to work is exactly what she did.
To fund her trip to the US, she began making money by manually printing t-shirts to sell at an upcoming soccer game in Kenya. She stayed up for three nights printing t-shirts. The first purchase for her business was a small table to work from. She saved almost enough through t-shirt sales for the flight to Mississippi, and her mother and community helped raise the remaining amount.
“Leaving my home to the U.S. was an insane task,” she says. “
This is where my journey began.”
When she arrived in the U.S., she wondered if she was in the right place. With little more than the $50 dollars in her pocket, her college advisor helped get her oriented before starting classes. Classes required her to use a computer to type an English paper, something she’d never done. She practiced daily to learn typing. “I just pecked and pecked, finger by finger, each letter on the keyboard, until I figured out the easiest way for me to type.” She fell in love with technology and enjoyed learning to use it.
Today Kapsandoy-Jones is working on making healthcare affordable for everyone. She’s also working on designing more patient-centered care in the healthcare field.
She gives this advice to young women looking at a career in technology; “Don’t be afraid to see where [life] will take you, invite others in, and most importantly, whatever you do, have fun with it!”