BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – This Women’s History Month, News 6 is committed to highlighting female trailblazers and women who continue to break barriers in different arenas throughout Central Florida.
It includes Pheloicsa Bostick, a lab medical technologist who has worked at what’s now known as Health First’s Holmes Regional Medical Center for half a century. She was also one of the first Black women to work in the medical core lab.
“I am so blessed and humbled to have been here 50 years,” Bostick said. “I just remembered the day I was hired it was such a great feeling. I really enjoying helping the patients and the families.”
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She also remembers how technology in the medical field has evolved over the years, particularly with how testing was done.
“When I first started, we did a lot of manual testing and even the reports were hand-written,” Bostick said. “We had a tabletop with the instruments on it and you could only do maybe 10 tests at a time.”
She continues to smile thinking about the contributions to modern medicine and how testing played a vital role. Most recently, testing was crucial during the COVID-19 pandemic where she helped test for antibodies, but her work extends well beyond 2020.
“The first one that was kind of scary was syphilis in the late ‘60s,” Bostick said. “There were a lot of testing that was positive and it kind of scared you.”
She also remembers doing testing and what things were like in the 1980s and 1990s during the HIV and AIDS epidemic.
“People thought they could catch it just by looking at or smelling it, but that wasn’t true,” Bostick said.
Bostick said she wouldn’t consider herself a hero. It’s work she enjoys and she says she’s passionate about it.
“When you get up and feel good about what you do every day, keep on doing it,” she said.
The mother of three and grandma of eight wants others to know they too can dream big and break barriers.
“Put your mind to it. Take one day at a time. One step at a time and stay strong,” Bostick said.
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