Nurse Becomes Hospital’s First Ever DAISY Awardee

“You wouldn’t think you would say that you enjoyed your hospital stay, but that’s definitely the case!” This is a quote from a recent patient’s daughter in regard to the extraordinary care and compassion that was shown for her mother during her stay. One nurse in particular went above and beyond and thanks to a new recognition program the Excelsior Springs Hospital has implemented, she was recognized with a surprise ceremony on Monday, January 16, 2023.

The Excelsior Springs Hospital's DAISY Honoree Award given to Samantha Eary
Samantha Eary, LPN becomes the Excelsior Springs Hospital’s first DAISY Award Honoree

Samantha Eary, LPN, has worked as a nurse for the Excelsior Springs Hospital since March 2012, where she was employed at the hospital’s Convalescent Center. When the Center closed, Samantha joined the hospital’s nursing team in May 2022. Here’s a transcript of the patient’s nomination that earned her the hospital’s first DAISY award:

“I am 80 years old and I have been in several hospitals since my 20s with many surgeries…I want everyone to know that Sam has given me the absolute best care I’ve ever experienced anywhere. She has always gone over and above to help me in every way possible. She has the most wonderful attitude and truly has a servant’s heart. It’s really odd to say, but I actually enjoyed my stay in this hospital. Sam made my time with her extremely pleasant, always doing more for me than was required of her. Her work is very efficient, even when she had to replace my tube that came out of my nose. It was her first time and she did a really great job. I felt very little. There are not enough words in the English language for me to express my gratitude and deep appreciation for the way Sam served me. She is definitely one of the best nurses I have ever been blessed to have take care of me. She’s a very highly skilled nurse willing to give extra of herself at all times I can honestly say that I have been blessed to be in her care. My stay here has been quite enjoyable at least when I was in such great need.”

Left to right: Director of Medical and Surgical and Emergency Department Lisa Fielder, The DAISY Honoree Samantha Eary, LPN, previous patient Carol Stock, and Chief Nursing Officer Sarah Gonzalez

The DAISY Award was established in 1999 and is an international recognition program for extraordinary nurses. It is in its first year at the Excelsior Springs Hospital. Nominations are taken throughout the year by patients giving testimony of their care and then a nurse is chosen from those nominations. They are notified as a winner with a surprise ceremony, showcasing the gifts of the nurse and offering program information.

In addition to the award and ceremony, the DAISY honoree will be included in the national recognition program, as well as given the opportunity to apply for or renew an ANCC Certification at a special rate, reduced tuition from Chamberlain University College of Nursing, the ability to apply for the Cherokee Nursing Conference Scholarship to help fund attendance at a nursing conference and support career advancement with eligibility to apply for Medical Mission Grants. Honorees are also eligible for The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses in Patient Safety, in partnership with The Institute for Healthcare Improvement.”

The Excelsior Springs Hospital encourages patients to share stories about their care and consider making a nomination for staff members that go above and beyond in excellence. For more information and to make a nomination today, click here.

Learn More About The DAISY Foundation

The DAISY Award and The Healer's Touch sculpture

The DAISY Foundation’s Story

The DAISY Foundation was established in 1999 by members of the family of Patrick Barnes. He was 33 years old when he died of complications of the auto-immune disease ITP. Like many families we see every day who go through this kind of horrific loss, the Barnes family wanted to do something positive to honor the very special man Patrick was. So, as they say, over a very “liquid” dinner right after Pat’s death, they came up with DAISY – an acronym for Disease Attacking the Immune System. As they brainstormed what The DAISY Foundation would actually do, they kept coming back to the one positive thing they held on to during Pat’s 8-week illness: the extraordinary care he and they received Pat’s nurses. The family was very impressed by the clinical care Pat’s nurses provided, but what really overwhelmed them was the compassion and kindness that his nurses brought to Pat’s bedside day in and day out. The nurses’ sensitivity made a great difference in the Barnes’ experience, and they wanted to say Thank You to nurses for the extraordinary care they provide patiences and family every day. So, Pat’s family created The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses. What started out as a thank you from their family to nurses has grown into a meaningful recognition program embraced by thousands of healthcare organizations around the world. We are very proud to partner with DAISY as we have extraordinary nurses here at Excelsior Springs Hospital.

DAISY Honoree Pin

While Patrick was ill, his Stepmother, Bonnie, noticed the great tradition nurses have for pins. The DAISY Foundation hopes honorees will wear their pins proudly.

The Healer’s Touch Sculpture

The beautiful sculpture is called The Healer’s Touch, representing the bond between nurses and their patients. The sculptures are hand-carved, made of serpentine stone, and are signed by the Shona artist from Zimbabwe who created it. We encourage you to view the video on the DAISY Foundation website to learn more about how these sculptures are made.

As you may know, the economy and politics of Zimbabwe have been in turmoil for decades, however, through their work for DAISY, the Shona artists are able to support hundreds of people in their community. The DAISY Foundation feels that nurses are reaching around the world and impacting the lives of these very special artists, and the artists are filed with gratitude to nurses for this work.

Pat’s Favorite Treat – Cinnamon Rolls

There are several reasons why The DAISY Foundation asks that cinnamon rolls be served at DAISY celebrations. When Pat was ill, he had lost his appetite until one morning, when he asked for a bite of a cinnamon roll that his Dad had brought for his own breakfast. Pat ended up eating the whole thing! As his family was leaving that evening, Pat asked that they bring him a cinnamon roll the next day and to be sure to bring in enough for all his nurses. Those cinnamon rolls were Pat’s ‘thank you’ to his nurses, and the Foundation wants all nurses to share in his favorite treat as a gift of gratitude.