Kootenai Health RN Cheryl Shaw received a DAISY Award nomination from the sibling of a patient who had Parkinson’s disease and COVID-19.
“Cheryl showed obvious and real exceptional compassion and professionalism,” the sibling wrote. “She was instrumental in making my sister’s final days not so terrifying.”
Cheryl is November’s DAISY Award recipient.
“This DAISY Award is definitely the highlight of my nursing career,” she said.
She said it was very special for the family of this particular patient to nominate her.
“Such a beautiful lady and a touching story,” Cheryl said. “When she left for Hospice of North Idaho, her brother asked me to keep and care for an orchid that she received as a get-well gift. This orchid resides in my master bath and I care for it every day. It currently keeps company with my DAISY Award flowers.”
DAISY is an acronym for “Diseases Attacking the Immune SYstem.” The DAISY Foundation was formed in January 2000 by the family of J. Patrick Barnes who died at age 33 from complications of Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura, an auto-immune disease. Touched by the care and compassion of his nursing team, his family developed recognition programs to honor and celebrate direct care nurses, nursing faculty and nursing students.
After spending the last two years working in COVID-19 critical care, Cheryl said associating her DAISY Award with these units makes it even more meaningful.
“Witnessing so much loss and devastation makes an impact on us as nurses,” she said. “Kootenai Health is a community hospital. Within a few degrees of separation, every patient is family, a friend or a neighbor. We want them all to get better. We want them all to go home.
“The last few years have been challenging,” she continued. “For many nurses, myself included, it has caused a lot of moral distress. The real, tangible evidence that my service to my community made a positive impact on one life, with a ripple effect to others, helps to heal my wounds.
“And my Healer’s Touch sculpture serves as a continuing reminder that health and healing are not something that is looked at in a snapshot, but rather a process that perseveres when we help one another.”