PINEHURST — FirstHealth of the Carolinas has recognized four nurses from across the system who go above and beyond as they care for patients and support their colleagues. The nurses were nominated by those they work with and recognized at the end of Nurses Week in mid-May.
Jacklynn Lesniak, DNP, M.S., R.N., NEA-BC, FirstHealth’s Chief Nursing Officer, said the award winners are great examples of how nurses play a critical role in helping FirstHealth achieve its core purpose – To Care for People.
“Nurses give so selflessly to our patients, serving as the glue that helps the system deliver high-quality care,” Lesniak said. “We were thrilled to honor all our nurses in May, and especially grateful for the efforts of our winners.”
FirstHealth’s CARE Nurse of the Year is Amanda Lee, R.N., who works in the emergency department at FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital–Hoke. The award recognizes nursing excellence in direct patient care based on collaboration, advocacy, research/evidence-based practice and a consistent demonstration of nursing excellence. A colleague called Lee “a rock” within her department and praised her for serving as a mentor for other nurses.
Jon Wesley Chappell, R.N. was honored with FirstHealth’s Rising Star Nursing Award, which recognizes a new graduate nurse who has excelled in the practice environment demonstrating personal and professional growth. Chappell began working in the Med Surg department at Moore Regional Hospital–Richmond after graduating in 2021.
“He constantly shows professionalism and concern for his patients and coworkers,” a colleague wrote. “He puts patients and their family members above all else, allowing and encouraging them to be an active part of their care.”
The Partners in Care Award honors nursing support staff who positively impact the care of patients and exemplify compassion, collaboration and dedication to FirstHealth. The 2022 winner was Ana Mirales, who works in the Med Surg department at Montgomery Memorial Hospital in Troy.
“Ana is one of our most dedicated and works hard. She comes in with a ton of energy and is always prepared to jump in and help,” a colleague wrote.
Tammy Smith, MSN, R.N., received the 2022 Innovations Award, which recognizes someone in patient care services who created or implemented a program, practice or activity that positively impacts nurses’ ability to provide quality care. Smith is the nurse manager for 4 Medical at Moore Regional Hospital in Pinehurst.
“Tammy took on the manager role of 4 Medical during the chaos at the beginning of COVID-19 and has consistently exceeded our expectations. When the emotional and mental burden of COVID-19 grew, Tammy found space on our unit for a debriefing room to provide staff with a retreat from the stress. The space she created makes us better able to provide quality care to our patients as well as help each other every shift,” a colleague wrote.