Editor’s note: Behind the Mask is a series intended to offer a glimpse at area medical professionals who are working on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

She is part of the team that conducts in-house testing to determine, within hours, if a patient has COVID-19, which has helped the hospital significantly reduce use – and conserve – personal protective equipment.

Schramm received an associate of applied science degree in medical laboratory technology from West Virginia Northern and a bachelor’s degree in clinical laboratory science from West Liberty University.

She enjoys spending time with her family at their campsite on the Muskingum River in Ohio, where they go boating and relax around a campfire. She and her husband, Jeff – her high school sweetheart -also enjoy golfing.

They have two sons, Austin and Garrett, who is a high school senior. The family has a dog, Toby, who they adopted from a local shelter, and a cat, Mittens.

Q. What are you grateful for?

I am really grateful for my job here at Washington. The hospital I worked at for most of my career closed its doors and I truly feel fortunate I had the opportunity to get this position in the Microbiology Lab.

Q. What radio station or kind of music do you listen to on your way to work?

I listen to 97.3, the Murphy, Sam, and Jodi Show in the morning on my way to work. I can relate to their stories and love the light rock music. Also, everyone who knows me, knows that if a Bon Jovi song comes on, the volume gets cranked up!

Q. What is your favorite restaurant? What do you normally order there?

I have a favorite dish at any restaurant! So I’d have to say that my favorite restaurant is C-J’s in Stockport, Ohio, which happens to be owned and operated by my mother-in-law. For the past 30 years she has been providing lots of yummy choices! I enjoy the Baco-Chicken sandwich. It is served on a Diamond Jim bun with chicken strips, American cheese, bacon and homemade spaghetti sauce. Then, of course, the blackberry pie is the best for dessert!

Q. If you could choose one household chore that you would never have to do again, what would it be and why?

A. It would be amazing if I never had to put laundry away ever again. I just don’t like doing it.

Q. What TV shows are you hooked on?

“This Is Us,” “New Amsterdam,” and all the “Chicagos.”

Q. What do you want people to know about the COVID-19 pandemic?

This pandemic has surely brought light to my profession. I learned in the beginning of my career that a medical technologist is a lab professional behind the scenes of quality patient care. We are often forgotten about, so please know we are a team that works hard to get results to your doctor as quickly as we can.

We are the first to know when a test is positive or a result is critical. We also know that each specimen we get is “our patient.” We may not see you, but we treat your sample as if it belonged to a family member of our own.

The clinical microbiology field has changed tremendously over the years and Washington Hospital has definitely kept up to provide excellent state-of-the-art instrumentation for their patients!

To have a new disease and a test available that is sensitive and specific within weeks is amazing. Then to also be able to bring this testing in-house to serve our community is great. I was so excited when I was notified of the COVID-19 test kit release – almost like getting a Christmas gift early!

I want to remind everyone to please listen to the medical professionals and stay safe! Hang in there, we are all trying our best to help.

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