Kristy McMaster, BSN, RN, of Christiana Hospital’s Neuro Critical Care Unit (NCCU), received the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses for December 2017.

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, compassion, respect and partnership.

Christiana Care’s NCCU is a specialized intensive care unit for patients critically ill from severe stroke. This DAISY nomination comes from a letter by a patient’s daughter  to Christiana Care President and CEO Janice E. Nevin, M.D., MPH, which begins:

“This letter provides a rave review to Kristie in the ICU.

“I have been taking my dad to the hospital, doctor appointments and serving as his escort through outpatient surgery for many years … In all of our experiences over the years, I have never met such a special nurse as Kristie.

“The ICU can be stressful and exhausting, but Kristie always had a smile, a kind word and a funny comment to match my Dad’s sometimes outrageous statements. She patiently spoke with him … and made sure he really understood.

“Kristie was always spot on time with her physical checks, medication deliveries and checking in on my dad for whatever he needed. I especially liked that she asked him how he wanted to be addressed, and when I heard her use his nickname, I knew she was an exceptional nurse. Kristie was respectful and professional, but genuine, and I could tell she really cared to make this experience for my Dad as pleasant as possible.

“Kristie has an extraordinary skill of getting all of her tasks done quickly, yet she still takes time to actually talk with the patient instead of rushing on to the next task or patient. Her interactions with staff members from other departments were clear, direct and professional in conveying the information they needed to know.

“Kristie also made sure my husband and I were OK. She asked if we needed anything, answered our questions and never once made us feel that we were a bother or an inconvenience. She clearly knows how important the patient’s support system is for recovery.

“I learned a lot from this most recent episode in my Dad’s health blips. Most of all, I learned that the attention and care provided by the people who directly touch the lives of patients truly make the difference between a speedy recovery or an unpleasant, unhelpful stay in the hospital.

“Thank you for having Kristie on your staff. I am blessed that she was the nurse responsible for caring for my Dad.”

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 2,500 health care facilities in every state and 15 countries honor nurses with the DAISY Award.

The Professional Nurse Council at Christiana Care selects DAISY Award recipients using a blind selection process based on nominations from patients, families and all members of the Christiana Care team. All nurses — inpatient, outpatient and VNA — are eligible.