“The Coronavirus global pandemic created challenges unlike most of us in healthcare have experienced before, but it also demonstrated the extraordinary value that the nursing profession provides to the healthcare delivery system,” Donley wrote of her team. During the nomination process, Donley interviewed countless nurses, many of whom were redeployed to help where they were needed most. She took notes, accumulating their challenges and most rewording experiences and then conveyed it all on the nomination form. She heard the most incredible stories.
For Patricia Donley, R.N., vice president, Patient Care Services and chief nursing officer at WellSpan Good Samaritan Hospital, it was more fitting for her to nominate the entire nursing team for their commitment, rather than to nominate one nurse over another, especially during the past year. Typically, this award goes to an individual each year. But this past year was far from typical.
“This has not been a year of individuals, because not one of us could do this alone,” she said. “This is a year in which no one stands above another. Rather, we stand together. This year, every nurse earned the title of healthcare hero.” Selected in the “Nursing Hero” category, all of the clinical and support nursing staff will be celebrated during a virtual ceremony later this month by the business journal.
“She rode in the ambulance on the way to the patient’s first treatment, Donley said. “She sat with her patient and held her hand during the entire treatment.” Through all of this, you realize the difference you make in people’s lives. Most significant personal accomplishment: Donley heard from a nurse about a special connection she held with one of her cancer patients. Since visitors weren’t allowed in the hospital or the outpatient clinic due to the pandemic, this nurse came in on her day off to be with her cancer patient during the patient’s first chemotherapy treatment.
Why go into the nursing profession: A mutual answer from Donley’s staff members was that it was their calling: “I didn’t choose nursing. Rather, nursing chose me.” “I knew our team was awesome, I know what they do every day, but when I asked those questions, I heard stories that I thought were amazing,” she said.
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