From left: This year’s three winners of the CNA of the Year award are Carolyn Bevan, Nicole Coleman, and Dionne Williams.

Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) represent an essential part of the patient-care team. In assisting the medical staff, CNAs not only provide physical care for patients but also emotional and spiritual support, truly making a difference in the lives of patients and families. CNAs are also the eyes and ears of the clinical staff, observing their patients carefully and making sure the health care team knows of any changes.

“It’s important to recognize how valued your work is,” said Niels Martin, MD, of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care, at HUP’s annual CNA celebration event held in Miller Plaza. “You spend more time with patients than any other team members, including nurses. You get to know them, answer their questions, talk to families. You are on the front line of care.”

“You impact patient outcomes by performing primary patient rounds or demonstrating good listening skills addressing needs,” added Mary Rogers, MSN, director of Nursing Operations. “You develop trust from patients that impacts how they perceive their overall care and hospital stay.You give your all.” In fact, in the recent employee engagement survey, “you are the most engaged group of bedside providers in the hospital… all in on goals and providing impeccable care. We celebrate you every day.”

In the past, only one CNA has received the annual Certified Nursing Assistant award but due to a 50 percent increase in submissions this year, the Nursing Professional Development Core Council decided to split the award into three categories: interdisciplinary team award, patient and family-centered care award, and spirit of professionalism.

Congratulations to this year’s three winners:

Interdisciplinary Team Award

Dionne Williams of Silverstein 7 is a “hands-on person,” according to her nomination letter. She developed her own patient care plans that have increased patient satisfaction. “For her, all patients on the unit are also her patients, regardless of her patient assignment.”

Dionne consistently checks with nurses and other CNAs to offer her help. “She has a can-do attitude and is always ready to lend everyone a helping hand.” She treats everyone with respect and is dedicated to her work, always updating nurses on the latest patient conditions. Her nomination letter noted that “having worked in urology in a different facility, she has the ability to present creative ideas regarding healthcare and hygiene issues. She often gives tips on proper catheter techniques and catheter care.”

Dionne has an upbeat personality. When she enters patients’ rooms, she brings in that ‘positivity’ by telling them stories that bring smiles to their faces.” Working rotating shifts is challenging but Dionne “willingly volunteers to work shifts to fill the unit’s needs,” for example, working 3 to 11 pm, and if the unit is short, coming back at 7 am. “Dionne is an all-around amazing CNA, a passionate and genuine person and a great positive influence on our unit. Just mention the name Dionne to any one of our staff members and they will reflexively smile in response.”

Patient and Family-Centered Care Award

Caroline Bevan of the Abramson Cancer Center provides a sense of comfort and calm for patients and their families as they arrive on the chemotherapy infusion unit. Her most valuable assets, noted the nomination letter, are her “warmth, compassion and concern” for them. Caroline worked closely with a schizophrenic patient with leukemia who required many transfusions. “Through her own initiative, she found calming techniques which made the patient feel safe while she was with us and grew to be very cooperative while receiving treatment.”

Caroline supports patients in the community as well, volunteering at the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Event, and the Be the Match Walk. “She also is actively involved in the ACC’s yearly fundraiser for fleece jackets with openings for central lines to keep patients warm throughout the year.” Caroline also donates items to the unit’s food pantry, which may be the first meal of the day for some patients.

Many of the drug regimens can cause serious reactions requiring immediate attention and additional medications. “Caroline does daily room checks to ensure that all necessary medications and IV fluids are present in order for the patients to receive treatment in a timely manner. She is quick to call for additional resources.

She is “a very important part of our health care team.”


Spirit of Professionalism Award

Nicole Coleman of Rhoads 1 is the “ultimate team player,” graciously accepting assignments and coordinating patient care. As a night shift CNA, she knows the importance of sleep for patients. To prevent extra interruptions, Nicole “works to cluster care. That extra step does not go unnoticed by patients. She is often mentioned by name in thank you notes.”

Nicole is self-motivated and very proactive in caring for patients, anticipating needs and notifying nurses when a patient’s vital signs are not normal or there’s been a change in a patient’s condition. One time, noticing that a patient was sweating and talking differently, she “quickly notified the nurse and then asked what she could do to help.” She is not afraid to assert herself when expressing her concerns about patients.

“Nicole is professional in accepting delegated tasks and has achieved a balance where she can efficiently complete all required tasks.”

Nicole is a real asset to the Rhoads 1 team. Both the unit’s nurses and CNAs comment on how much they enjoy working with her.

Congratulations to this year's CNA award nominees. 

Roshena Spriggs (Dulles 6)

Tasha Green (Silverstein 7)

Mark Green (Founders 8)

Shirley Houston (EDOU)

Natalie Warner (Rhoads 1)

Jasmine Ruffin (Founders 11)

Nicole Coleman, Dawn Scott, and Justina Fera (Rhoads 1)

Lahkel Horshaw and Memuna Daramy (Silverstein 9)

Minelle Nau and Sonya Sharp (Silverstein 10)

Valerie Dancy, Brianna DiDonato and Lisa Wimberly (Ravdin 6)

Patrice Clanton and Karen Martin (Silverstein 11)

Dennis Morales (Founders 14)

Winifred Gbeyi (Rhoads 1)

Melissa Melchor (Endoscopy)

Ivor Assaye (Silverstein 12)

Al Hood (SFAS)

Crystal Parks (ICN)

Margaret Fisher (PCAM 3)

Nikita Colon (Founders 10)

Charynda George (Rhoads 3)

Caroline Bevan  (ACC)

Dionne Williams (Silverstein 7)

Robersine Robinson (Rhoads 2)

Carolyn Gilding (Rhoads 7)

Tanisha Holmes and Nekia Henry (Rhoads 5)

David Wilcher and Floyd Grafves (Ravdin 9)

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