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Meet the 2011 DAISY Recipients — First Quarter

The DAISY Foundation continues to celebrate the tremendous skill and compassion of extraordinary nurses through its nationwide recognition program. The following are excerpts from DAISY Award recipients’ 2011 first-quarter nominations.

To view a full list of this quarter’s winners, visit

To nominate a nurse you know, visit

Deepa Kurup, RN


Deepa Kurup, RN • Acute Hemodialysis Unit, VCU Medical Center • Virginia Commonwealth University Health System • Richmond, Virginia
Deepa is passionate about life as well as her nursing career. Deepa had worked with Mr. G upon many occasions. He was a patient who came to the U.S. from India on a VISA. After his arrival, it was discovered that Mr. G suffered from kidney failure and required dialysis. His VISA expired, and he remained in the U.S. without any funds to return to his home country. He was destitute. Deepa took great compassion in working with Mr. G. She displayed kindness and sincerity in treating him holistically and in non-judgmental ways. Deepa spoke with him about returning to India, although he had no financial means to accomplish this great task. So Deepa collaborated with the social worker in seeking funds to assist Mr. G in returning to India. She also collaborated with the dialysis attending in coordinating dialysis care for Mr. G upon his return. She contacted a nephrologist in India, who was willing to take Mr. G as his patient. Mr. G had financial concerns as well, so Deepa contacted the MKF Charitable Trust (the Mumbai Kidney Foundation in India), and they agreed to help support Mr. G financially until he could obtain employment. After much planning, coordinating, and solicitation of funding for airfare, Mr. G was able to return home. This is an amazing example of Deepa’s compassion, kindness and passion for making a difference in the life of one patient.

Julius Urbano, RN


Julius Urbano, RN • 5 North, Mount Sinai Hospital • Chicago
It is always a pleasure and honor to work with Julius. He is consistently the “go to” person for difficult IV starts or for help with a deteriorating patient. He is one of the first helpful hands to arrive on the scene, whether it is a rapid response or you just need help turning a patient. The patience and empathy he has is a model for all staff working on this unit. I was particularly impressed when a rapid response turned into a code blue and the patient expired. It was a young woman with many children, and it was after visiting hours. I was in charge, and Julius asked to have the patient moved to the room at the end of the hall for the family to come and say goodbye. We made an exception, and her 7-, 9-, 13- and 15-year-olds were accompanied by their father, pastor and aunts. It was very emotional. Julius stayed available, and continuously answered hard questions. He was really a pillar of emotional support. At one point, the 7-year-old boy cried out, “That is my mother. Can you please not call her ‘the body’?” Julius did not get defensive, he only said “It’s OK,” and extended his arms. The boy wept on his shoulder.

Gerald “Jerry” Carpenter, RN


Gerald “Jerry” Carpenter, RN, BSN • AMU, Bronson Methodist Hospital • Kalamazoo, Mich.
Jerry was my night nurse for four of the five days that I was a patient. From the time Jerry first walked into my room to the last time I saw him before I left the hospital, he showed himself to be a caring, gentle, kind and compassionate individual. My first night in the hospital, I was very sick physically, and emotionally I was a wreck. Because of my illness and hospitalization, my husband and I were unable to go to our daughter’s home in North Carolina to spend Thanksgiving weekend with them and their children. I was devastated. It seemed to me that my disease was spreading instead of getting better, and I was in tears. Jerry calmly told me the antibiotics take time and I really was getting better. He looked me in the eye, got down to my level and confidently told me that everything would be OK. He even dried my tears. When I used my call button, he was there within two minutes to take care of my needs. Although all of the nursing staff that I encountered was wonderful, Jerry stands out. He is definitely in the right profession.

Patricia Medina, RN


Patricia Medina, RN • Labor and Delivery, Winchester Hospital • Winchester, Mass.
Patricia Medina was nominated by a patient for being a “natural, powerful caregiver who all of our up-and-coming nurses should emulate.” In the nomination, the patient described how Pat prevented her from panicking during her planned C-section: “Pat held me as if I were her child, she rubbed my head with a cool cloth and looked only at me, right into my eyes to reassure me I was not on my own and that I would be OK”, the patient wrote. “As a nurse myself, I think we forget how powerful our instinct to comfort can be. Human touch is extraordinary.”

Maria Bowers, RN


Maria Bowers, RN • Second Chance Behavioral Health Unit, NewYork-Presbyterian Payne Whitney Westchester • White Plains, N.Y.
When Maria walks on the unit, you can hear patients calling her name with excitement because they know she will make a difference in their day and in their care. Even when patients are very psychotic, she sits quietly and listens to what they have to say. She seeks input from her professional colleagues before she intervenes with a patient. Often she is the nurse who gently encourages patients to take their medications when previously they have refused. A letter from a recently discharged patient best states the reason Maria was chosen for the DAISY award: “I barely moved or spoke [when I first came to the hospital]. I was fed, washed and cared for by Maria [and another nurse]. They gave me shots because I would take no medicine. I sat for months as well as stood still alone. If it wasn’t for Maria … I would be the same. … Maria and the other nurses all put me back together.” The patient was able to go on a pass to get her hair, nails and shopping done. At the end of the day, she said, “I have never felt better in my whole life.” Maria is highly skilled in the art of gently encouraging and supporting patients as they recover. We are proud of Maria Bowers and the hope she offers our patients who suffer from chronic and persistent mental illness. She is a true inspiration to both patients and staff!

Marvel Peel, RN


Marvel Peel, RN • ICU, UPMC Horizon • Greenville, Pa.
“Marvel spoke from the heart and believed what she said. She was extremely knowledgeable and able to simplify everything to layman’s terms for me. She made me feel like I was the superhero ready to concourse the world. She gave me hope and a vision of a great future and a love of life that was infectious. What she gives to her patients can’t be taught or paid enough for. She is a winner through and through.” We are very proud to have Marvel caring for the patients at UPMC Horizon.

Diane Wagner, RN


Diane Wagner, RN • Health First Aging Institute, Cape Canaveral Hospital • Cocoa Beach, Fla.
Diane was nominated by the daughter of one of her patients. The nomination stated:
“I want to express to you what a wonderful job Diane has done for me and my family in helping with the care of my mother. We are in the unfortunate situation of being more than 1,000 miles away in New Jersey, while Mom is in Florida. We brought her up this past summer for three months, and wouldn’t have been able to, without Diane’s help. It was such a smooth transition, because Diane was not only so amazingly efficient, but extremely professional and very compassionate. She was willing to work with us over such a long distance, sometimes on a daily basis. It made an extremely stressful time much more bearable. Mom is back in Florida now, and I’m sure Diane is just as much a help to my brother, who deals with her locally. It was/is truly our pleasure to deal with her and everyone in the office. She is truly deserving of an award!”

Milanie “Lanie” Giauo, RN


Milanie “Lanie” Giauo, RN • Med/Surg, Kaiser Permanente South San Francisco Medical Center • South San Francisco
Recently Lanie shared an encounter with a patient that really demonstrates her professional presence. Her patient, a woman who was dying, was altered and could not verbally communicate with others. Her daughters were very distressed that they would never be able to speak with their mother again. Lanie took one daughter’s hand and placed it on the patient’s chest. She explained that each daughter was one with her mom’s heart and they could all share in this moment. At Lanie’s urging, while one daughter held one hand upon her mother’s chest, the sisters held hands and formed a circle. Each family member was able to personally address their mom. The family laughed and cried as they spoke with their mom and shared stories. Lanie relayed what an honor it was to facilitate closure for those daughters. Without Lanie’s professional guidance, there would have been a different outcome for the patient and her daughters. I was very touched by the story and have repeated it when talking about the Caring Science to multidisciplinary teams. The story speaks to the healing nature of nursing and how nurses make a difference in the way we honor our patients’ wholeness. Lanie’s story also reminds each of us to be the best of who we can be in whatever role we have.


Kristal Hillie, RN • Step Down, Baptist Memorial Hospital-DeSoto • Southaven, Miss.
My dad has short-term memory loss. He can remember things vividly if they happened 20 years ago, but if it was five minutes ago, he can’t recall it. He has been by my mother’s side for a week and would not leave her. She fell and broke her hip. He finally went home with my daughter to get some sleep. The plan was to get him early the next morning. When she got there, he was not there. His truck, which he has not driven for a year, was gone as well. She called his cellphone, and he answered. He thought he was in Arkansas. There was a church and the sign had Valley Hill United Methodist Church. The phone signal died and no more info. Kristal was in the hospital room when my daughter called. She and another nurse get on the Internet to try and find Valley Hill United Methodist Church. They found one in Greenwood, Miss. Kristal, using a code on the hospital phone, called the Greenwood Highway Patrol. In a matter of minutes, the highway patrol calls back and report they have him. It was a miracle. Thank God for concerned, caring nurses and the Internet!

By | 2020-04-15T13:56:32-04:00 April 4th, 2011|Categories: Awards, Nursing news|0 Comments

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