2014 National Nurses Week

| Posted On May 06, 2014 | By:

nurses week 2014The 2014 National Nurses Week theme is “Transforming Health Care through Nursing Leadership,” and this theme is clearly evident in the outstanding contributions and achievements of our more than 500 extraordinary nurses at Harvard Vanguard.  Our nurses are leaders in embracing new technologies, innovative care delivery processes or more efficient ways to better meet the complex and diverse needs of our patients and families. Nurses are partnering with their colleagues to deliver patient-centered, compassionate care in a team-based model. These efforts, as well as the day-to-day care they provide, are making a difference  in the lives of our patients and families. Join me in celebrating the achievements of our talented nurses and their commitment to excellence.

Although I know the stories below are only a small glimpse of the amazing care provided at Harvard Vanguard each and every day, I would like to share the inspiring recognition and testimony given by those who nominated nine of our nurses for the Boston Globe Salute to Nurses. We congratulate and sincerely thank our extraordinary nurses!

Barbara Donnelly, NP – Chestnut Hill/West Roxbury Internal Medicine

Nurse Practitioner Barbara Donnelly works with my primary care physician, Dr. Karen Sherritt. Barbara has been my go-to person for all my many needs and questions since I was diagnosed last year with interstitial lung disease and polyneuropathy. She has facilitated referrals to doctors at the Brigham and had their prescriptions filled at the HVMA pharmacy. Barbara always returns my calls promptly. She is my guardian angel and a true friend.

—Nominated by Florence Goodman

Laurie Frazier, RN – Wellesley Anticoagulation, Urgent Care

Laurie Frazier is an urgent care nurse at Harvard Vanguard in Wellesley. As the main urgent care weekday physician, I feel so fortunate to have such a skilled, kind, and entertaining nurse to work with. She provides quality care and effortlessly puts patients at ease. Thank you, Laurie, for all you do.

—Nominated by Dr. Melinda Steele

Kathy Guicho, NP – Peabody/Lynnfield Internal Medicine

On a Friday night visit to a hospital emergency room, I had no success with the physician who didn’t give me a reason for my high blood pressure reading of 185. I was told to go home and rest. The next day my pressure was the same, so I went to Harvard Vanguard urgent care. I was met by nurse practitioner Kathy Guicho. She agreed that the high pressure should be addressed. In addition to a physical exam, she ordered lab tests and continued her search. By that time the lab had closed. This did not deter her. She asked if I could stay and she would continue testing. Somehow, she got lab personnel back to take blood and do the lab work. It was well past closing time but it didn’t deter her. Based on the lab results, she changed my medication and dismissed me as a very relieved patient. All the time she made sure I was a comfortable and aware of what she was doing. She kept me in her sight and escorted me to and from the lab. All above the call of duty.

—Nominated by Frances Bobroff

Naomi Joress, NP – Braintree Pediatrics

Naomi is the nurse practitioner who works with my daughters’ primary care physician. She gives the best care, and my girls love her. She has been there for us through some really tough times, like when my oldest was a preemie, who struggled to drink formula and eventually was diagnosed with leukemia. It doesn’t matter which daughter I take to the office, Naomi always asks where the other one is and how she’s doing. She is very knowledgeable and always has great tips.

—Nominated by Leah MacLeod

Anne Krekis, NP – Copley Internal Medicine

Anne has been my primary care provider for a number of years now. She is the most caring and competent provider I have ever been assigned to. In all honesty, I am a difficult patient—very skeptical of the healthcare system, struggling with a host of chronic illnesses as I move toward my senior years, and possessing a typical boomer mentality that is refusing to accept that my body is aging. Through all of this, Anne has always believed in me as a good person underneath my struggles and, sometimes for that reason alone, I have followed her guidance and directions to try to restore my health.

Her care and attention are always very personalized and lean toward the holistic approach, which I greatly appreciate. As a gay man of a certain age, I have experienced blatant homophobia with several previous medical providers, but Anne is very “gay friendly,” and this makes a huge difference in how I feel about going to the clinic for my appointments. This attitude is often overlooked, but very important to people like myself; basically, how long we live is controlled by how gay aware and gay friendly our providers are.

I have struggled so much with my weight in recent years, and she has taken a gentle rather than admonishing approach with me, which is helping to turn things around. With the medical issues I have been dealing with in recent years, I don’t think I’d be alive if Anne had not worked with me to move toward healthier patterns of living. I can’t give higher praise than that.

—Nominated by Damian Ryan

Sarah Kucala, NP – Quincy Internal Medicine

Sarah has been my primary care person in the Quincy practice for the past four years. She is a dedicated professional caregiver who doesn’t miss much when it comes to thoroughly looking after my health needs and prescribing ways to correct some of my health problems. I have been cared for by Harvard Health for the past 35 years or so. I have made a lot of visits to a lot of healthcare providers from the practice during that time; some stand out in my memory as capable while others have rushed me in and out of their offices. Not Sarah. When I leave a session with her, I always feel better. The best healthcare providers have a gift of healing and don’t necessarily look at their work as a job; rather, it’s a calling. I feel lucky to have someone as empathetic, friendly, and kind as Sarah looking after me and I deeply appreciate her work ethic. She is a very special nurse practitioner. Thank you, Sarah.

—Nominated by John E. Roche

Linda Lundblad, APRN – Copley Behavioral Health

Linda is a true example of what a quality, caring, healthcare worker should be. She is someone who makes everyone feel like family. Caring and compassionate, she goes above and beyond the call of duty every day to help patients, co-workers and anyone she comes in contact with. She is like a sun that brightens up our world when she is here.

—Nominated by Norma Espinosa

Lorraine Noonan, LPN – Concord Pediatrics

Lorrie has been a fantastic nurse, because she always goes above and beyond to make sure the patient is comfortable with the plan of care. She knows exactly what information to give callers and can handle emergency situations with grace. Not only does she go the extra mile for patients, but she also does so for staff. She is willing to help out a colleague with anything needed and she is a great trainer for new staff.

—Nominated by Gayle Nelson

Alona Rotkovitch, NP – Braintree Internal Medicine

I have been seeing nurse practitioner Alona for many, many years for my annual Pap, breast exam, and checkup. I really cannot remember the name of my doctor, as I only use Alona. She is thorough and caring and never makes me feel any question is stupid or trivial. We are very simpatico and have children the same ages, and she just plain “gets” me. Alona listens, offers suggestions, is never judgmental, and is always respectful. Our time is never rushed and she takes all my concerns seriously. If Alona decides to retire, I will be bereft. She has seen me through menopause and I hope to get through many more healthy years with her.

—Nominated by Sheila Horowitz

And Susan Russo, RN – Wellesley Internal Medicine (who recently left the practice)

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About Deborah Morsi, PhD, RN, NEA-BC

Deborah Morsi joined Atrius Health in November 2012 as the Vice President of Nursing for Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates. She brings to our practice an enormous breadth of knowledge, experience, and compassion focused on what is best for patients. Prior to joining the organization, Deborah served as Vice President of Patient Care Systems for Baystate Medical Center and Chief Nursing Officer of Baystate Health for the past eight years. In her total of 30 years at Baystate, Deborah served in various leadership roles including Nursing Operations, Nursing Practice & Research, and as a Nurse Manager. Deborah has also previously worked at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York and Hillcrest Medical Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Deborah received her BS in Nursing from SUNY Brooklyn, an MS degree in Nursing Administration from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, and a PhD in Nursing from University of Massachusetts. Deborah has numerous publications covering such topics as patient safety, process improvement, and nursing job satisfaction.

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