Freeman Health System recently held its first recognition ceremony in conjunction with the DAISY Foundation program. The DAISY (Diseases Attacking the Immune System) Award is an international recognition program that honors and celebrates the skillful, compassionate care nurses provide every day. The DAISY Foundation was established in 1999 by the family of J. Patrick Barnes. Patrick died at the age of 33 from complications of an auto-immune disease. During his eight-week hospital stay, his family was impressed by the care and compassion his nurses provided, not only to him, but to everyone in the family. They created the DAISY Award in Pat’s memory to recognize those nurses who make a big difference in the lives of many people.
A few months ago, Freeman began requesting DAISY Award nominations from patients, fellow nurses, volunteers, physicians, staff or visitors. The nominee was to describe a situation in which the nurse demonstrated at least one of these principles:
P – Passion/compassion for nursing and the care provided to the patient and family
E – Empathy in the situation
T – Trust and teamwork with families, patients and teammates
A – Admirable attributes possessed
L – Loyalty to patients, families and hospital
S – Selflessness
It was no surprise Freeman received an abundance of nomination forms recognizing the compassionate care and clinical expertise of registered nurses. With the help of the Shared Governance Nursing Coordinating Council, Freeman selected three nurses to be honored at its first quarterly DAISY Award presentation.
The first recipient, Stacy Pryor, RN, from Freeman Emergency Department. Stacy was nominated by a visitor whose 13-year-old son, James, needed medical attention. James had viral encephalitis and needed to be transferred to a children’s hospital in Kansas City.
The mother writes: “Stacy was empathetic and warm, yet professional. She was professionally proficient and communicated with us effectively and in a timely manner. Her calm demeanor and excellent nursing skills were noticed and appreciated. James is doing wonderfully now, due in large part to the care he received at Freeman’s Emergency Department. Thank you!”
The second DAISY Award winner is Shelly Shoemaker, RN, from Freeman Medical/Oncology, was nominated by staff member, Linda Bailey. Linda was delivering a dinner tray to a patient who wouldn’t respond and was breathing strangely. Linda quickly contacted Shelly who discovered the patient was trying to cause harm to himself and intervened.
Linda writes: “Shelly saved his life. She responded quickly when I expressed concern for him. She was very professional in her duties and showed him great compassion and encouragement in the following days during his stay. She is a hero in my eyes.”
The final DAISY Award winner for this quarter is Megan Dirteater, RN, from Medical/Oncology. Megan was nominated by a visitor whose mother was receiving care.
The nomination reads: “Every time Megan came into the room she had a smile on her face! She was full of compassion and treated my mother as family. Megan brushed my mother’s hair and rubbed lotion on her back to help her feel at ease at bedtime. My mother has dementia, and even if my mother doesn’t remember her tomorrow, I will never forget the care Megan provided. The care she provided was truly exceptional.”
Congratulations to all of Freeman’s DAISY Award winners! Each honoree received a certificate commending her or him for being an extraordinary nurse, a DAISY Award pin, a sculpture called “A Healer’s Touch” and a box of Cinnabon® cinnamon rolls. Shelly, Stacy and Megan are heroes who demonstrate excellence through clinical expertise and compassionate care. They serve as outstanding role models for the nursing profession.
Do you know a nurse deserving of the DAISY Award? Complete an online nomination form today!
April Bennett, MSN, RN, is Vice President of Nursing Services at Freeman Health System. April earned a Master of Science in nursing education from University of Missouri Kansas City and a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Missouri Southern State University. Providing care for nine years at Freeman, April has a passion for providing quality, compassionate and safe care to every patient, every time.