Three MHP Nurses named “100 Great Iowa Nurses”

Mahaska Health Partnership’s Top 100 Iowa Nurses for 2012: Linda Lindgren, RN on Inpatient Geriatric Psychiatry; Dawn Voss, RN and Director of Clinical Quality, and Family Nurse Practitioner Melissa Lamb, ARNP of the New Sharon Medical Center.

Oskaloosa – Mahaska Health Partnership nurses Dawn Voss, RN of Rose Hill; Linda Lindgen, RN of Oskaloosa; and Nurse Practitioner Melissa Lamb, ARNP of Oskaloosa, have been named to the eight annual listing of “100 Great Iowa Nurses.”

This award recognizes outstanding nurses whose exceptional contributions to patients, colleagues and the profession are truly remarkable. Hundreds of nominations from around the state of Iowa were first evaluated by reviewers and final selection was determined by representatives of the Iowa Hospital Association, Iowa Nurses Association and the Iowa Nurses Foundation. Recipients will be honored at a special celebration recognizing National Nurses Week on May 6 in Des Moines.

According to MHP Chief Nursing Officer Darlene Keuning RN, BSN, MS, those chosen for this honor are to be commended for advancing and leading the profession of nursing. Recognition is meaningful because it is independent, outside recognition of the excellence found in MHP’s nursing staff. “It is a great affirmation of the skill, quality and compassion of our nursing staff,” Keuning said.

Voss, who is the Director of Clinical Quality at MHP, has a strong passion for health education, which encompasses both staff and patients. She has led the charge at MHP to improve processes for the entire organization, from the development of a service recovery program to decreasing patient falls through planned processes. She has developed processes for many clinical quality initiatives and the results continue to lead MHP on a road to quality excellence.

“Dawn began work on a Readmission Project and was instrumental in creating tailored patient education around Diabetes, Heart Failure and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease,” said nominator Cathy Stahl, a co-worker. “She developed a free quarterly community workshop to promote education on heart failure. This free community class provides patients with education on medications, signs and symptoms of worsening heart failure, as well as the importance of understanding and complying with a low salt diet. Dawn is always the patient advocate, looking out for what’s in their best interest at all times.”

Lindgren is a Charge Nurse in Mahaska Health Partnership Inpatient Geriatric Psychiatry. Her daily job is full of challenges and complex patients. However, she is known for the incredible bonds she forms with each of her patients. According to her supervisor Lisa Cox, BSN, Lindgren’s commitment to her patients reaches far beyond her time on the job.

“Linda recognizes special events in the lives of our patients, whether they occur during their stay or after discharge,” Cox said. “She cares deeply for patients while they are in her care at the Inpatient Geriatric Psychiatry Unit and long after they leave. She treats all patients with the same compassion, regardless of how challenging their mental state may make caring for them. When a patient is discharged, a hug from Linda is guaranteed.

“Linda also serves as a mentor for families of our patients, teaching them how best to assist their loved ones in their current mental state. Many of the families we deal with are feeling frustrated, overwhelmed and sometimes hopeless; it is not an easy time. Linda is consistently recognized by our patients and their families in patient satisfaction surveys for her care and concern for their unique situation and her ability to explain how our program works and give them a better understanding of their loved one’s disease process.”

Melissa is a Family Practice Nurse Practitioner who works for Mahaska Health Partnership by serving as the sole medical provider at the New Sharon Medical Center. MHP repeatedly receives positive reports from her patients on how wonderfully Lamb has cared for them. According to nominator Joy Patch, RN, as a direct witness to the type of care she provides even temporary patients, Lamb’s concern for patient’s overall health and well-being is evident.

Melissa not only sees patients in her offices but also makes ‘home visits’ to those who find it difficult or burdensome to travel,” Patch said. “She is very involved in the New Sharon community activities and events, and she is one of our more active provider volunteers for the Oskaloosa Free Clinic. Melissa always puts the needs of her patients and community first, providing most of her volunteerism during her personal time.”

Patch said that similar to her patients, Lamb’s colleagues also rave about her compassion and dedication to going way above and beyond. In fact, Lamb was named the 2011 MHP MVP by her peers. This was the first time in its six-year history that the award was given to a nurse practitioner and not a physician. Patch said that similar to her patients, Lamb’s colleagues also rave about her compassion and dedication to going way above and beyond. In fact, Lamb was named the 2011 MHP MVP by her peers. This was the first time in its six-year history that the award was given to a nurse practitioner and not a physician.

Keuning said that MHP’s three nurses honored as “100 Great Iowa Nurses” are true leaders who represent the best that the nursing profession has to offer. “The compassion, high quality care and leadership our nurses provide every day is truly exceptional. We are so proud and thankful that we work with many great nurses at MHP and because of their care, our patients benefit.”

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