Adventist Health Glendale honored several nurses with awards on Thursday as part of National Hospital Week.
From Monday through Thursday nurses have been treated to different events, such as a barbecue, an ice cream social and a day of massages. The event on Thursday was a luncheon where nurses in each unit of the hospital were honored with a Nurse of the Year Award. Filor Izanian was given the overall Nurse of the Year Award, and Patricia Hepburn was honored with the Professional Practice Model Nurse Award.
The event also recognized recipients of the DAISY and BEE awards this year. The DAISY (Diseases Attacking the Immune System) and BEE (Be Exceptional Everyday) honors are given each month to nurses and staff based on who obtains the most nominations from patients and peers.
Jinhee Nguyen, a patient-care executive, opened the ceremony by talking about crucial moments in her nursing career, such as caring for a 16-year-old girl who died from a gunshot wound.
"I realized this is a body, a precious life that God had created," she said. "What was so special is that I was there to witness, to accompany the last moment of this young life."
Those moments reveal why a nurse's work is so meaningful, she said.
"It is a nurse who will remember to ask your name as she struggles to save your life," she said. "It is a nurse who will comfort a family and sit with a patient who has no one to visit. It is now and always a nurse who will stay by your side and comfort you when you need it most."
The staff then enjoyed lunch while watching clips of each nursing unit outlining their accomplishments for the year, including high rankings in hygiene and patient safety. Then representatives from each unit stepped up to the podium to describe each winners' work ethic and dedication before revealing their name, followed by applause.
Hepburn, awarded the highest honor this year, has worked in the neonatal intensive-care unit for 38 years and is a neonatal resuscitation program instructor and a breast-feeding educator, teaching both parents and staff breast-feeding practices.
"Many of our new grads who are given [Patricia] as a preceptor have commented about how good she is at teaching them not just how to care for a neonate but the 'why's' of the care," said Randy Miller, a nurse manager in the neonatal intensive-care unit. "These nurses have gone on to become excellent NICU nurses."
As a charge nurse, Hepburn said she has had to resuscitate infants and cry with parents in need of comfort, but she has fallen in love with the profession.
For several of the nurses, the profession was something they stumbled upon and found a passion in. Hepburn said she studied marine biology, and at her mother-in-law's suggestion, tried one year in nursing school. She never looked back.
Hepburn said she was shocked, thrilled and embarrassed to be awarded the highest honor.
"I work with such spectacular people that I'm not a standout," Hepburn said. "[The staff] make life easy. They make it fun."
Below is a list of all 2018 "Nurse of the Year" winners:
Medical/Surgical Nurse of the Year — Asmik Aryrapetyan
Telemetry Nurse of the Year — Lara Kumjian
Critical Care Nurse of the Year — Ricardo Sayat
Emergency Nurse of the Year — Rafael Luna
Perioperative Nurse of the Year — Sabrina Aguirre-Tamariz
Perinatal Nurse of the Year — Lisa Bayne
Behavioral Health Nurse of the Year — Patrick Adugu
Cath Lab Nurse of the Year — Peter Nalbandian
Licensed Vocational Nurse of the Year — Laura Godlinez
Certified Nursing Assistant of the Year — Jeffrey Balinguit
EMT/MHT of the Year — Mark Sahakian
Monitor Tech/Unit Secretary of the Year — Laura Magallanes
Ancillary Registered Nurse of the Year — Gemma Bito-Onon
Nurse of the Year — Filor Izanian
Professional Practice Model Nurse — Patricia Hepburn