NEWARK, N.J. The city of Newark Department of Child and Family Well-Being recently honored 27 nurses for their dedication and years of service to the department. We have nurses who have more than 47 years of nursing experience, with a combination of almost 600 years of nursing experience in our department, says Ann Sailsman, RN, C, MS, APRN, BC, DNP, director of public health nursing services.
Fifteen nurses were recognized for more than 25 years of nursing service, 10 nurses were honored for one to 24 years of service, and two nurses were awarded pins for their first year in the department. Nurse of the Year was awarded to Mary Jones, RN, and the Teamwork Award was given to Judith Colbert, RN. Aishah Hakim, RN, was recognized for Excellence in Education and Roslyn Goodwin, RN, BSN, was given the Award for Nursing Excellence.New graduates who work for the Department of Child and Family Well-Being are (standing from left) Nekisha Balfow, RN; Joanne So, RN; Juanita Baca, RN; Jessica Williams, RN; and Eneida dePina, RN. They join Eileen Williamson, RN, vice president of Nursing Communications & Initiatives at Nursing Spectrum, and Ann Sailsman, RN, director of public health nursing services.
To raise awareness of public health nursing, Maria Vizcarrondo, MS, director of child and family well-being, and Sailsman, with authorization from Newark Mayor Cory A. Booker, offered on-the-job experience to eight new graduates. We want to expose new nurses to the world of public health nursing, and we need more RNs in the field, Sailsman says. At the same time, we have our experienced RNs who are excellent role models and mentors for our new grads.
These new nurses are being trained in the areas they have been assigned to work, which include pediatrics, Project Vaccinate, and Special Care. Once they attain a certain level of experience, they will be cross-trained by RN mentors to work in other clinical areas.From left, Mary Jones, RN; Denise Scantling, RN; Jean Pinnock, RN; and Joanne James, RN, were honored for their years of service and dedication during a nursing department celebration.
The department, staffed by only 30 RNs, offers a vast array of services to Newark residents, particularly those who are more vulnerable. There are 280,000 people in Newark, but less than 200 primary care physicians. Two local hospitals closed last year. As a result, heavy demands have been placed on the department to offer services to more people and many who require more acute care.
For more than two decades, our department has been the safety net for Newark residents who may be uninsured or underinsured and need our services, Vizcarrondo says. The department offers comprehensive care to the homeless, a child lead poison treatment and prevention program, an aggressive immunization program called School Bus Express, medical clinics for children and adults, a TB clinic, a mobile healthcare clinic, a communicable disease prevention and treatment center, and podiatry services.