Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Parkwest recognizes nurses for providing exceptional care
Parkwest Medical Center recently held its annual reception in honor of National Nurses Week. This recognition week is held each year in mid-May to coincide with the birthday of Florence Nightingale, who is credited as the founder of modern nursing.
The reception at Parkwest honoring its nurses has evolved over the past decade to provide special acknowledgement and scholarships for those who go above and beyond in their mission to provide excellent care to each patient by faithfully aiding physicians in their work – just as they promised under oath at their graduation by reciting the Nightingale Pledge.
“We are fortunate to have a group of outstanding nurses at Parkwest,” said President and Chief Administrative Officer Rick Lassiter. “I receive countless CARES comments every year about how dedicated and professional our nurses are. It is a privilege to work with them.”
“We currently have 803 Registered Nurses. Each of them gives their all to care for our patients – 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It’s an honor to celebrate them each year during National Nurses Week,” said Diane Oliver, Parkwest Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer.
Parkwest Medical Staff established a Clinical Excellence Award Scholarship program in 2000 to provide financial assistance for selected nurses to use for educational purposes. Every year, each unit at the hospital selects a winner and they are recognized during the Nurses Week Reception. Since its inception, Clinical Excellence Awards have been given to more than 250 nurses who use the scholarship to attend national conferences in their specialty area. This helps make Parkwest nurses better informed on the latest in health care. They share their knowledge with their peers to further cultivate best practices at Parkwest.
The winners of this year’s Clinical Excellence Awards at Parkwest are: Claire Austin, Critical Care; Mary Ball, Pre-Admission Testing; Denise Bean, Surgery; Michelle Beeler, Peninsula; Regina Buchanan, Ambulatory Staging Unit; Ann Burchfield, 4 Riverstone; Jennifer Conner, Emergency Care Center; Penny Cruze, 3 Montvue; Liz Cumberland, Cardiac Specialty Unit; Vickie Fraser, Peninsula; Linda Frost, Post-Anesthesia Care Unit; Jennifer Johnson, Orthopedics; Reita Johnson, Cath Lab; Pat Lanza, Peninsula; Wanda Limburg, Senior Behavioral Center; Ashley Luttrell, Childbirth Center; Terri Munsey, Cardio-Thoracic Surgical Unit, Kerri Onks, 2 Montvue; Kent Parris, Peninsula; Wanda Price, Float Pool; Bonnie Scarlett, Quality & Clinical Effectiveness; LaDonna Sy, 4 Montvue; Glenda Thomas, Imaging; Rhonda Valentine, Peninsula; and Margie Watkins, Endoscopy.
The Susan Foster, RN Professional Development Award was created in memory of “Sue” who dedicated an endless level of enthusiasm each and every day, creatively tackling each project. This award is specifically designed to honor an employee of Parkwest who is in pursuit of a nursing degree. This year, the award was given to Nick Bittle, a Certified Nursing Assistant on the orthopedic floor.
Dr. Jesse Doers, on behalf of Statcare Medical Group, presented the second annual Janet Heffern, RN Critical Care Scholarships. Statcare established the scholarships in 2011 in honor of Heffern who, prior to her retirement, worked in Critical Care and had been with Parkwest since its doors originally opened in 1973. One award is presented to a recent nursing graduate and the other to a clinical coach or mentor on the unit.
“In my eyes, there are three things that make a great clinician: their compassion and care for their patients; their thirst for knowledge and ongoing learning; and their improving processes and teaching colleagues in order to raise the bar of excellence. Janet is the epitome of all of these,” said Doers.
Alex Geer was named the 2012 new graduate recipient and Melanie Reagan was the clinical coach recipient of the Janet Heffern Critical Care Award.
The Leanne Baker Professional Nurse Awards are the most prestigious nursing honors given at Parkwest. These were established in memory of Baker to recognize the very best of the best – the people who set the standard for professional nursing. Baker contributed to the standard for nursing care through her compassion for the patient, professional demeanor and unwavering leadership.
As a reflection of the many paths a nurse can take, this award honors excellence in two distinct paths – clinical care and leadership.
This year, Parkwest House Supervisor, Carol Finley, was awarded the Leanne Baker Professional Nurse Award for Nursing Leadership. Amanda Underwood, who currently works as a nurse educator and spent many years as a critical care nurse, was awarded the Leanne Baker Professional Nurse Award for Professional Practice.
“I recently saw a patient in my office for follow-up after what was a very difficult surgery and hospitalization,” said Dr. Willard Campbell, Parkwest Chief of Staff during his remarks at the reception. “Medically he was doing well, and he and his wife went on and on about what an exceptional experience they had at Parkwest – from the time they registered all the way to discharge. At every level the praise revolved around people, most especially nurses, who made a difficult time a little easier. Nursing is a stressful and demanding profession and I think nurses may not always appreciate the profound impact they have on patients. I am proud to be associated with the nurses at Parkwest who so consistently maintain an attitude of kindness and professionalism toward their patients – and make us docs look good as well!”