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Deborah Heart and Lung Center Nursing Abstract Selected for Presentation

Highlighted at Nursing Workplace Environment & Staffing Council Retreat

An abstract presentation titled “Meaningful Recognition,” prepared by the nursing staff at Deborah Heart and Lung Center, has been selected for presentation at the Nursing Workplace Environment & Staffing Council (NWESC) Retreat on September 18, 2020. NWESC is a commission of the Organization of Nurse Leaders of New Jersey (ONL/NJ).

Deborah’s NWESC Chapter last year decided to focus on “Meaningful Recognition” as an internal project. The NWESC program is based on the American Association of Critical Care Nurses’ (AACN) “Standards for Establishing and Sustaining Healthy Work Environments” conceptual framework. Meaningful recognition is one of the six pillars of this framework and underscores mutual respect through mutual recognition. After study and discussion, Deborah’s NWESC Chapter initiated a Nursing from the Heart Award to show appreciation for the hard work nurses do at the Hospital.

“Our committee discovered that sometimes nurses — both direct care and those in leadership roles — may often feel underappreciated or unrecognized for all the effort they

Deborah’s NWESC Chapter at a planning meeting, held prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Deborah’s NWESC Chapter at a planning meeting, held prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

put forth,” said Jessica Ahearn, RN, and Deborah NWESC Chapter Co-Chair. “With that in mind we developed the Nursing from the Heart Award so that nurses could nominate a colleague who they felt deserved special recognition.”

This past June the award was bestowed upon a critical care nurse who had a seriously ill COVID-19 patient. This nurse had been caring for the patient until it became evident that end of life comfort measures were all that were left. With family visitor limitations in place, the nurse stayed with the patient throughout her final hours, sitting bedside with her and holding her hand until she passed.

Ahearn added: “It is these every day actions that prompted us to develop this recognition program. The award is given on a quarterly basis.”

Rita Zenna, RN, Vice President, CNO at Deborah echoed Ahearn’s sentiments.

“I am proud that this committee found an excellent way for internal nursing recognition, peer-to-peer,” she said. “It means so much when a nurse is singled out by their colleagues for recognition for acts that they do, quietly day in and day out. These nurses never expect to be recognized, but when it happens, it is a real testament that the ‘extra’ that they put in is appreciated.”

“I am proud of our team for being selected by the ONL/NJ NWESC Commission to present at their annual Retreat. This too is a testament to the compassion our nurses show on a daily basis and the award makes it that much more meaningful coming from their colleagues.”

Terms & Conditions

By participating in this quiz, or screening or health assessment, I recognize and accept all risks associated with it. I understand that the program will only screen for certain risk factors and does not constitute a complete physical exam. For the diagnosis of a medical problem, I must see a physician for a complete medical exam. I release Deborah Heart and Lung Center and any other organization(s) involved in this screening, and their employees and agents, from all liabilities, medical claims or expenses which may arise from my participation. Thank you for investing in your health by participating today.