Early one Monday morning in September, nursing leaders, colleagues and a former patient greeted Dana Stanitski, BSN, RN II, on her unit, 2C at Christiana Hospital, and presented her with the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses.
Christiana Care DAISY Award recipients are nurses recognized for meeting and exceeding the needs and expectations of patients and families by displaying exceptional clinical skills along with compassion, respect and partnership.
Michael Tucker, a patient who spent more than two weeks at Christiana Care, nominated Stanitski for the award. Tucker first went to the Middletown Emergency Department after a month of severe headaches. When a CT scan revealed a subdural hematoma, the medical team transferred him to Christiana Hospital.
Tucker underwent surgery to relieve the intense pain caused by the subdural hematoma, a condition caused by bleeding where blood collects between the surface of the brain and brain covering.
Having experienced periods of intense pain during his stay on 2C, a unit specializing in neurology and trauma, Tucker said he was moved by Stanitski’s genuine compassion, and felt fortunate to be in the care of such an attentive nurse.
“She was always there to keep an eye on me,” he said. “She escorted me when I needed to leave my bed. She did a wonderful job anticipating and working to address my needs before they became a problem.
“When I was in a great deal of pain but it wasn’t yet time for my medication, Dana thought ahead. Instead of relying solely on narcotics, she used simple therapeutic remedies like bringing me an ice pack or heat pack to help provide relief.
“When I needed to see the doctor, she helped me get in touch and supported our communication.
“When my parents visited, Dana did a wonderful job explaining what was going on and helping get answers to their questions,” Tucker said.
Established in 1999, the family of J. Patrick Barnes created the DAISY (Diseases Attacking the Immune System) Award to honor his memory with a tribute to the skillful and compassionate care he received from his nurses during his hospitalization. Today, more than 1,900 health care facilities in every state and 14 countries honor nurses with The DAISY Award.
Christiana Care’s Professional Nurse Council selects DAISY Award recipients based on nominations from patients, families and colleagues. All nurses — inpatient, outpatient and Visiting Nurse Association — are eligible.