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Hometown Impressions

St. Anthony nurses have hands blessed

Hospital recognizes caregivers during National Nurses week


For 15 years in a row, the annual Gallup honesty and ethics poll has found nursing to be the most honest and ethical of professions.

St. Anthony Hospital certainly doesn’t need to be reminded of the crucial work nurses do, and as part of National Nurses Week, the hospital honored their nurses with the annual Blessing of the Hands ceremony and handing out of awards on May 10.

“Nursing is one of the largest work forces we have and at times it can be a thankless profession,” said Linda Goodwin, Chief Nursing Officer at St. Anthony. “They’re a vital part of our mission here, and their healing presence can be felt in their service.”

Both clinical and nonclinical nurses were recognized at the ceremony, and nine received special awards for going above and beyond in their callings.

The Non-Clinical Caregiver of the Year recognition went to Elizabeth “Betsy” Phelan, Chaplin Lead, and Clinical Caregiver (non-nurse) of the Year was awarded to Mary Charles Pfister, Pharmacy Lead at the hospital.

The Nurse Excellence awards went to five nurses in different areas of focus: Dr. Pam Bourg, Group Director of Trauma Services, was recognized in the Transformational Leadership category; Heather Berg, Assistant Nurse Manager of Neuro-Trauma Intensive Care Unit won for Structural Empowerment; Niccole Schmeer, Clinical Nurse in the Emergency Department won for Exemplary Professional Practice; Megan Coles, RN Educator in the Emergency Department was recognized in the New Knowledge, Innovations, and Improvements category; and Jamie Grant, Clinical Nurse in the Intermediate Care Unit won in Empirical Outcomes.

The final award of the event went to John Swanhort, Assistant Nurse Manager of the Emergency Department, who was named 2017 Nurse of the Year.

“It was really humbling to be recognized by a great organization like this,” Swanhort said. “It’s awesome to be with all these inspiring people.”

As the nurses and attendees left, oil blessed by Father Charles Anedo was used by hospital chaplains to bless the healing hands.

“It’s always nice to have positive recognition like this,” said Berg. “It’s a labor of love for all of us.”


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