Finding Her Home at South

Posted on June 29, 2018 by Alumni

Natalie Fox data-lightbox='featured'

Natalie Fox left her rural hometown of York, Ala., near the Mississippi line, with an open mind about her life path. She had once dreamed of playing professional basketball. Then, during her teens, her experience on several mission trips crystalized a sense that her purpose in life was to help people.

Where? Well, her sister lived in Mobile. And, Fox said, “I’ve always loved the water.” So she entered the College of Nursing at
the University of South Alabama. It was the start of a beautiful relationship. “I found a home there.”

She earned a bachelor of science degree in 2007. And a master’s in nursing three years later. After a brief stint working at Tulane University in New Orleans, she came back to South and in 2016 became manager of clinical operations for pediatrics at USA Physicians Group. She added two more titles just last year: Fox earned her doctorate in nursing practice at South, making her Dr. Natalie Fox. She also was promoted as the first director of nursing for USA Physicians Group. In announcing that promotion, Brian Norris, administrator of ambulatory services for USA Health, praised Fox’s “enthusiasm, openness and willingness to dig in and focus on patient care and patient outcomes.”

Others have noticed her accomplishments and leadership qualities as well. In its January 2018 issue, Mobile Bay Magazine recognized her in its annual “40 Under 40” list of up-and-coming community leaders. Fox said her time working in New Orleans made her appreciate what she had left behind in her adopted city of Mobile. “I thought maybe the city was going to offer a lot more cultural things. But I realized that happiness is about the people around you. I really have such a great work family at South.”

Family, whether personal or professional, means a lot to her. “I’ve been really fortunate with a lot of great mentors at USA,” she said. Dr. Alethea Hill, an associate professor in the College of Nursing, taught one of her first classes, Health Assessment. “I remember from the moment she walked in the room, she inspired me,” Fox said. “She really knew her stuff.”

Fox has a restless spirit. “I’m the type of person who’s always looking for what’s next on the horizon,” she said. “I would say that being ‘present’ is not one of my strong suits. That’s why I should probably do yoga more. Because I’m always looking forward.”

Fortunately, USA Health shares her thirst for progress as well as her belief in working collaboratively. Fox spoke enthusiastically about USA’s participation in the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative, a national project funded by the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. It promotes teamwork among the doctors, nurses and
other healthcare providers who care for a patient, and also between providers and their community.

“It takes a village,” Fox said, “and it takes a village in healthcare, too. It takes everyone from the front office to the nursing staff to the clerical workers. Everybody plays an important part in the patient care process. I’m excited to be working for an organization like USA that’s really committed to our community and improving the health of the people who live in Mobile.”

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