President's Report 2018-2019 - Page 16

T The Nursing Excellence Awards he Nursing Excellence Awards program provides awards to nurses working in Bucks and Montgomery County communities who have been nominated by their colleagues. These awards are intended to recognize those nurses who have provided extraordinary service to patients, families, and our community.  Fred and Nancy Allegrezza established the Nurse Laureate awards program at North Penn Hospital in 2001. Nancy, who worked as a nurse in the cardiac rehabilitation department, wanted to do something to celebrate the loyalty and hard work of the nurses at the hospital and raise the awareness of the value of nursing in the community.  Shortly after the establishment of the awards program, the North Penn Community Health Foundation became the steward of the awards program until 2008. Through a grant made by the Foundation, Gwynedd Mercy University was then selected to manage the Nursing Excellence Awards Program.  This year, four nurses spanning a multitude of specialties were honored.  Christine Passarelli Christine is a Cardiac Therapist and Registered Nurse at Doylestown Hospital. Christine developed and implemented an Early Heart Failure program, playing a major role in implementing low level exercise program so heart failure patients can start within a couple of weeks of being discharged from the hospital versus waiting six weeks.  Christine teaches holistic interventions to cardiac rehabilitation staff and patients to improve wellness, decrease stress, and build resiliency.  Jamie Dugan Jamie is a charge nurse on surgical unit at Einstein Montgomery Medical Center. Jamie assumes responsibility for the work flow of a 36-bed unit and assists other staff with issues or concerns that may happen during their shift. In addition, Jamie has taken the role of clinical instructor for LaSalle University. His contributions to the community involve work with St. Genevieve’s School Health Programs and Drug and Alcohol Programs. Neva Heron Neva is a charge nurse on a Med/Surg Oncology/Hospice unit at Einstein Montgomery Medical Center (EMCM). Neva is one of the first RNs hired to open EMCM where she volunteered to be the Super User for EMCM’s award-winning etCO2 monitoring of Med/Surg patients. In this role, she has trained staff to use an Opioid Induced Respiratory Depression assessment to stratify those patients who are at risk. Rita Linus Rita is the Director of Nursing Education and Competency for Main Line Health, where she has worked for the past 30 years in a variety of positions. Rita embraces and leads change that stretches capacity and comfort. One example was her willingness to be the interim nurse leader for the acute rehabilitation hospital. Rita took on this team and listened to their concerns and in less than 90 days, she was able to modify schedules to provide more consistent coverage, hire new staff, and advocate to get a bonus program in place to provide stability with prescheduled additional shifts. (L. to R.) Nancy Allegrezza, Rita Linus, Christine Passarelli, Neva Heron, Jamie Dugan, and Fred Allegrezza 14 PRESIDENT’S REPORT