As we all know, the COVID-19 pandemic has created tremendous challenges for the nursing staff here at McLean. In addition to dealing with new safety protocols and a surge in patients, the hospital is opening 68 new beds and facing serious staffing issues. Our nurses are tired and eager for life to return to normal.
Fortunately, with the advent of widely available and effective vaccinations, we are in the recovery phase. Unfortunately, the pandemic is still with us. Hospital staff and patients are still getting tested and wearing masks, and the Delta variant poses new threats to public safety.
Challenging Times, Heroic Efforts
Given these many challenges, Linda M. Flaherty, RN, PMHCNS-BC, senior vice president, Patient Care Services, pointed out a few members of the staff whose work and commitment reflect the character of McLean’s overall nursing community. Their heroic efforts over the past year have been truly inspiring.
Karen Slifka, RN, MS, CS, nurse director for the Community Reintegration Unit, and Cassandra M. Godzik, PhD, NP-BC, prescriptive authority nurse at the Lincoln Residence, volunteered to offer peer support to nurses and clinicians at New Mexico’s Navajo Medical Center, which serves the Navajo Nation reservation. Each spent a week at the center, helping staff with the stress, anxiety, and depression related to their work in this pandemic-ravaged region. You can read more about their important efforts in this issue of Nursing Network.
Over the past few months, Abigail Rice, MSN, RN, has been instrumental in our successful recruitment and training efforts. She has organized our orientation sessions, served as our Epic champion, co-chaired the awards committee, and co-chaired the Nurse Practice and Quality Committee. We have all benefitted from her tremendous work, as well as from her calm, positive demeanor.
Karen, Cassie, and Abbie reflect the best of us here at McLean. We thank all of our nurses for their excellent work, commitment to our patients, and willingness to go above and beyond no matter the challenges.