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After nearly a dozen years as a clinical dietitian at University of South Alabama Medical Center, Tammy Zan has been promoted to the post of clinical nutrition supervisor.
In her new role, Zan will work with patient improvement projects, nutrition clinical outcomes, committees and staffing issues.
She won’t leave behind her love for helping patients in the weight-loss surgery program. “I really enjoy working with the bariatric population,” she says. “We can make a difference there. Changing lives and inspiring people is very rewarding — seeing a transformation in patients’ lives.”
Zan is enthusiastic about hospital work in general.
“I like working with patients,” she says, “and this hospital is so patient-centered.”
A California native, she went to California State University, Long Beach knowing that she was intrigued by the medical field but not sure where she might fit in. “I took some nutrition classes and really liked them,” she says.
Moreover, she discovered that she enjoyed the hospital side of the field. Even more, assigned to a program at UCLA, she had her first taste of a teaching hospital — “and I knew that was what I wanted. I enjoy the atmosphere because you’re constantly learning and making a difference in people’s lives.”
Moving to Alabama, she continued her education at the University of Alabama at Birmingham — and that program sent her as an intern to USA Medical Center. And Zan found her place. “Parenteral nutrition — tube feedings and IV feedings — fascinated me. I wanted to learn more.”
Now she works as a preceptor for UAB students coming to South and loves that teaching role, too.
Zan joined the U.S. Army Reserves in 2003, commissioned at the Medical Center by a dietitian officer from Walter Reed Hospital. But her Army service never pulled her away from USAMC, and when she had her first child — eight years ago — she opted out of military services.
But not out of USA.
“I really like it here,” she said.
Zan and her husband have one son and enjoy sharing his activities — especially baseball — and, the entire family loves to go camping.
About the University of South Alabama Medical Center
The University of South Alabama Medical Center offers patient-centered care to the central Gulf Coast with unique services including Mobile’s only Level I Trauma Center and Regional Burn Center, plus Centers of Excellence in stroke care and cardiovascular diseases, and a wide range of acute care services.
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