In recognition of National Nurses Week (May 6 – 12), Mercy Medical Center is honoring five of its clinical staff members with Nursing Excellence Awards. The hospital’s 2014 honorees are Cayla Ames, R.N., Mercy Intensive Care Unit; Christine Bauman, R.N., Mercy Heart Center; Stephen B. Gartrell, R.N., Mercy Heart Center; David Glasgo, R.N., Mercy Emergency Department; and Dishon Kamwesa, R.N., Mercy Cancer Center. Kamwesa is also Mercy’s representative for the 2014 Cameo of Caring award. He will be honored later this year at The University of Akron.
“Nursing is at the very heart of our mission at Mercy,” says Barbara Yingling, R.N., BSN, MAed, vice president and chief nursing officer. “This year’s award recipients again epitomize quality, compassionate care for our patients and serve as role models for other staff members, as well as volunteers and students who aspire a career in nursing.”
Meet our Nursing Excellence Award recipients:
New Philadephia resident Cayla Ames, R.N., Mercy Intensive Care Unit, says from a young age she knew she wanted a profession that would allow her to help others. In November 2011, she graduated Summa Cum Laude with her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Ohio University. A natural leader, Ames has exceptional clinical skills, is a great communicator and is an advocate for her patients.
“Cayla is an excellent resource to our night shift staff,” says Jason Pirtz, R.N., BSN, MBA, administrative director of critical care services. “All staff respect her and when they have questions, they go to Cayla because she is the expert,” Pirtz says.
No matter how difficult the day, Ames says she feels a sense of accomplishment knowing that she helped ease someone’s pain or fears. “Sometimes all a person needs is a hand to hold, a friendly face or someone who will listen,” she says.
“Nursing is a profession founded on caring for others,” Ames says. “As a nurse, I strive to be someone that will set aside time each shift to sit with a patient and let them know someone is truly listening and honestly cares.”
Paris Township resident Christine Bauman, R.N., Mercy Heart Center, spent a lot of time with her beloved aunt during her youth. Her aunt was a nurse and a very positive influence in her life. From the time Bauman was a teenager, she knew she also wanted to become a nurse, and in 1981, she fulfilled that dream when she graduated from Akron General School of Nursing.
Bauman says the nursing profession has proven to be satisfying and almost a sacred calling. “I love being a nurse; the caregiving role gives me great satisfaction,” she says. Bauman has served her entire nursing career in the coronary care unit. “I feel it is very challenging and encourages me to strive for knowledge and continue to be a lifelong learner.”
Bauman’s experience, clinical knowledge and love for her patients are evident to all those around her. “Chris is a great teacher,” says Allyson Kelly, R.N., BSN, MBA, FACCA, director of Mercy Heart Center. “She has great experience and unselfishly shares that with every nurse on the unit.”
Dover resident Stephen Gartrell, R.N., Mercy Heart Center, says his mother was his inspiration to become a nurse. “She has been a nurse for 20 plus years and truly loves her job,” Gartrell says. Since graduating in May 2007 from Kent State University with an associate’s degree in nursing, Gartrell has experienced that love for nursing firsthand. He says one of the most satisfying parts of his profession is seeing patients smile when they are discharged after recovering from a major operation.
Patients appreciate Gartrell’s calm demeanor, positive personality and exceptional communication skills. They often ask if he is going to be back to care for them the next day. He is also respected by his coworkers and physicians and was recently recognized as one of the best team players in Mercy Heart Center.
“Steve has the ability to think critically, respond quickly and pays close attention to detail,” Kelly says. “He is definitely a ‘go-to’ person in the department.”
Gartrell is a preceptor (educator) for new nursing employees and students. He is also active in his community where he serves as a volunteer fireman.
David Glasgo, R.N., Mercy Emergency Department, says he’s always had an interest in the medical field. A Beach City resident, Glasgo graduated In May 2012 with his associate’s degree in nursing from Kent State University at Tuscarawas where he served as nursing student class president and was the graduation speaker.
Glasgo is a natural leader and described by coworkers as dedicated, self-motivated and a highly valued member of the emergency department team. He advocates for best practices for both staff and patients. He is a great communicator and teacher helping patients know what to expect during their time in the emergency department.
Glasgo says what he finds most satisfying is allowing Christ to work through him by showing compassion and caring for others. “So many people are hurting physically, mentally and emotionally,” Glasgo says. There is no greater opportunity in life, he says, than influencing others and impacting their lives.
Canton resident Dishon Kamwesa, R.N., Mercy Cancer Center, says it is a true blessing to serve in the profession of nursing. “I am realizing how rare it is to love what you do and even rarer to enjoy the environment and people around you in the workplace,” Kamwesa says. He has been a part of many communities but says none have been as fulfilling as Mercy Medical Center and Canton, Ohio.
Kamwesa provides highly skilled care while also demonstrating compassion and empathy. “His calm demeanor is comforting to patients, and he has a talent for communicating effectively and eliciting trust,” says Karen Coughlin, R.N., MSN, administrative director of Mercy Cancer Center. “When I am able to develop relationships with patients and help them through difficult times, the life experiences they share with me are priceless,” Kamwesa says.
He shares a story about a young woman who was suffering and eventually passed away. “I saw a family that was so strong,” Kamwesa says. “They invited us (the nursing staff) to share in their mourning. I was able to pray with them and offer any comfort, along with my coworkers, but ultimately I received so much from their graciousness.”
Kamwesa receives numerous compliments from patients and their family members. He was selected as Mercy’s Star Performer (employee of the month) for May 2013. He has also been selected as Mercy Medical Center’s 2014 Cameo of Caring recipient and will be honored later this year at The University of Akron.
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