Three Christiana Care Health System nurses won 2014 Delaware Excellence in Nursing Practice Awards from the Delaware Nurses Association in partnership with the Delaware Organization of Nurse Leaders. These awards recognize nurses who consistently promote and excel in their profession, and bring a positive approach to their area of nursing practice.
Recognized with the Executive Nurse Leader Award is Donna Casey, MA, BSN RN, FABC, NE-BC, vice president, Patient Care Services, Cardiovascular and Critical Care. A nurse since 1982, Casey joined Christiana Care in 2003 as a nurse manager in the intensive care unit at Wilmington Hospital. Today, she leads fiscal and human resource administration for her service line, which include four intensive care units, four step-down units, flex monitoring, liaison support to heart and vascular outpatient care areas, and the oversight of more than 600 employees.
Her numerous accomplishments include co-leading the systemwide rapid response team steer and leading the alarm management initiative to achieve the Joint Commission National Patient Safety Goal. With a specialty in administration and bioethics, Casey also serves as co-chair of the Christiana Care Ethics Committee. She is studying for her doctorate of nursing practice, expected in May 2017.
“I am incredibly humbled and honored to receive this award,” said Casey. “There are many phenomenal nurse leaders in our organization, and this award reflects their leadership as well. It takes support at all levels of an organization to make a leader a great leader.”
Stephanie Santo, BSN, RN III, CCRN, received honors in the category of Clinical Nurse — Critical Care (Hospital- Based). A bedside nurse in the Surgical Critical Care Complex, she joined Christiana Care in 2006, taking one year away to serve as a traveling nurse in 2009. Santo had been hospitalized often as a child and knew early on that she wanted to become a nurse — taking care of patients just as her nurses had taken care of her. “I really can’t imagine doing anything else,” she said.
“Stephanie is so deserving of this award,” said her nurse manager Louise Fagraeus, BSN, RN, CCRN. “She is a leader in our unit, and absolutely goes above and beyond in everything she does — from taking great care of patients to educating other nurses to playing an instrumental role in key projects, and even visiting elementary schools to speak about the nursing profession. Rarely do you have a nurse that absolutely everyone loves. Stephanie is that nurse.”
Turquoise Abdullah, BS, BSN, RN, is recognized in the category of New Nurse. She joined Christiana Care in the Post-Anesthesia Unit in August 2014 after completing Christiana Care’s Critical Care Nurse Residency Program. She is following in the footsteps of her father, who is also a nurse. Said Abdullah of her award, “I will continue to work to live up to it.”
According to her nurse manager, Amy M. Kohl, MSN, RN, CCRN, there is no doubt. “Turquoise is an amazingly talented nurse,” said Kohl. “She is incredibly knowledgeable, especially for someone new to nursing, and seeks opportunities to learn at all times. We’re so proud of her accomplishments and so fortunate to have her on our team.”
These honors “represent the high standard of nursing excellence and leadership that makes Christiana Care a Magnet organization,” said Diane P. Talarek, MA, RN, NE-BC, senior vice president of Patient Care Services and chief nursing officer.