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Swedish Medical Center Nurses Receive The DAISY Award

Eight Swedish Medical Center nurses will receive The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses, a national program established by The DAISY Foundation to recognize nurses who deliver quality and compassionate care.

The nurses will receive their awards at a special ceremony at Swedish’s Cherry Hill campus on Wednesday.

The ceremony will take place Dec. 5, 2012 at 10 a.m. Cherry Hill campus; 500 17 th Avenue, Seattle, WA 98122 Education Conference Center (James Tower, first floor, Room C)

Swedish Medical Center will celebrate five years of presenting The DAISY Award, and UnitedHealthcare will announce its continued support for the program at Swedish’s five hospital campuses (First Hill, Cherry Hill, Ballard, Edmonds and Issaquah) as well as its two ambulatory care clinics in Mill Creek and Redmond.

Special guests at the ceremony will include The DAISY Foundation co-founders Mark and Bonnie Barnes and UnitedHealthcare Northwest Region CEO David Hansen. In addition to announcing the eight new winners, Swedish will honor its past 44 award recipients, all of whom have exemplified the tenets of the DAISY Award: social responsibility, service excellence, ethical behavior, safe patient care, quality care and continual education.*

“Nurses are a vital resource in today’s health-care system; they are the healthcare professionals on the frontline who spend the most time with patients and whose role is pivotal in helping people live with illness and live healthier lives,” said Hansen. “UnitedHealthcare is grateful for the opportunity to join with Swedish Medical Center today to honor DAISY Award winners past and present for their extraordinary, compassionate care and commitment.”

*Excerpts taken from nomination form – please do not release names until post ceremony.

  • Crystal Nguyen, RN, Swedish Physicians Factoria primary care clinic (hire date: 2010; Lynnwood resident) Crystal juggles triage duties, medication refills, staff training and mentoring, ordering medical supplies and medication, and much, much more with patient care. She demonstrates such compassion and respect with the patients that they often tell me what a wonderful experience they just had with her.
  • Liliya Bondarenko, RN, Swedish/First Hill (hire date: 2006; Bothell resident) We could not manage this vulnerable population (geriatrics) without Liliya's invaluable daily assistance. Recently, one of our patients with advanced dementia…was taken to the Emergency Department (ED) at an outside hospital in respiratory distress. The outside hospital was unable to get in touch with the patient's daughter, who was traveling out of state. When the ED called my office for records, Liliya recognized immediately that urgent action was called for. This was a patient with advanced directives and a POLST form that clearly specified the focus of her care should be on comfort. Liliya was able to recognize the acuity of the situation, locate and send the relevant documents from the medical record to the outside hospital, and reach the patient's daughter on her cell phone to confirm her wishes for her mother, all within about 15 minutes. The patient's family was immensely grateful that their mother was not made to suffer needlessly; she transferred home with hospice and died peacefully several days later. As a geriatrician, I am unbelievably grateful that someone like Liliya is here to look out for my patients, even when I cannot. We could not do this work without her.
  • Summer Vandam, RN, Swedish/Ballard (hire date: 2010; Sand Point-area resident) Summer is an amazing team player. She goes above and beyond for patients, and will do whatever she can do to make sure that all patients get the best care possible. Summer always tries to secure a good foundation for safety for patients, and is always keeping their health and wellness in mind.
  • Troy Cavanaugh, RN, Swedish/Ballard (hire date: 2007; West Seattle resident) One of Troy’s most inspiring clinical experiences was when he was working in a hospital with no perinatal services. On one particular evening he was working in the ED, a car pulled up to the ambulance entrance with a mother in the final stages of labor. Troy delivered the boy, directed the other staff to find the never used infant warmer and created the environment that resulted in both patients doing very well. The exceptional part of this story is Troy’s calm under fire and his ability to direct his team through this unusual and stressful situation.
  • Glenda Butler, RN, Swedish/Ballard (hire date: 2010) Glenda's role in the ED is often as the charge nurse. She runs the floor with ease and confidence. She works hard and expects those around her to do the same. When you work with her you feel supported and she instills in her colleagues the desire to work hard and as a team. As a patient you would feel very fortunate to have Glenda be your nurse. An example of her not missing the small things is her recently taking on the role of providing toys and trinkets for the pediatric population we care for in the ED. She reminds us daily the importance of reaching out and lending a helping hand, recognizing the positive attributes of our colleagues and is constantly thinking of new ways to improve on employee and patient satisfaction.
  • Eric Stevenson, RN, Swedish/First Hill (hire date: 2011; NE Seattle-area resident) Patients and their families describe his caring and compassion, and his love for his profession. A patient in ICU was about to be transferred and she said that while she does not remember Eric because she was critically ill, her family told her about how amazing Eric was and how he saved her life through a very anxious time for them. They all said they wish all of the nurses were like Eric. They said that you cannot teach the caring that he displayed- it is just who he is and it is priceless.
  • Jacqueline Armstrong, RN, Swedish/Cherry Hill (hire date: 2002; Bellevue resident) When she is in the charge nurse role, she is able to guide the unit in a calm and confident manner. Her critical thinking, problem solving and communication skills give a sense of control and peace to the unit. In her role as preceptor she guides new grads in the development of their clinical and professional skills. She seems to intuitively know when to offer more support or push for more independence. She incorporates all the concepts of rehab nursing into her clinical practice. She is able to motivate patients to do for themselves; her patient and family teaching is delivered in a way that learners can understand and is focused on a successful discharge, she is a true team player who is respected by therapists and physicians."
  • Millie Cunningham, RN, Swedish/Issaquah (hire date: 2000; Bellevue resident) Millie is an extraordinary nurse. She can handle the most complex cases, physically or psychologically. She is a team player and very energetic. Her goals are to safely and efficiently care for all the patients and maintain the unit. We could use more staff nurses like Millie. I cannot say enough kind words about her. I am glad that she has been a mentor to me and I have learned so much from her in just the short time that I have worked at Issaquah campus and I have been a nurse for over 31 years.

About The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses

Seattle native Mark Barnes and his wife Bonnie spent their careers working as advertising and marketing executives. In 1999, Mark’s son Patrick, 33, developed the auto-immune disease Idiopathic Thrombocytopenia Purpura (ITP). Pat and his wife Tena had given birth to the family’s first grandchild six weeks prior to his illness.

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