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Story - The Patriotic Nurse

The Patriotic Nurse

During orientation at Robley Rex VA Medical Center in Louisville, KY, Brooklyn Winston, RN found one part of training especially inspiring - I CARE, the five core values (Integrity, Commitment, Advocacy, Respect and Excellence) that define Veterans Affairs' culture and commitment to Veterans, their families, and other beneficiaries.

She left orientation confident about her new position. "When I first learned of the I CARE values, I immediately knew that I had chosen the perfect place to establish my nursing career. I CARE is an integral part of the nursing culture here and it helps to consistently provide excellent care to our Veterans."

After several weeks in the busy medical surgical unit of 4North, Nurse Winston noticed that it was difficult to share information across the unit. To open the lines of communication, Brooklyn formed a committee and worked with other staff members to develop a quarterly newsletter, The Patriotic Nurse.

The Patriotic Nurse was written by nurses for nurses, with committee members contributing articles about their areas of expertise, including infection control and ulcer prevention. Other sections including "Getting to Know Your Co-Workers" and the "Who's Who of VA Nursing Leadership" introduced team members and highlighted the accomplishments of seasoned leaders. The Patriotic Nurse offered the Robley Rex nurses an outlet to improve communication, share their experiences, and celebrate each other's achievements.

Judy Hamrick, EdD, RN, MSN-FNP, Deputy Nurse Executive at Robley Rex, applauds the nursing team's commitment to improve Veteran care. "Without prompting from anyone from management, Brooklyn, and the newsletter committee designed, developed, and implemented The Patriotic Nurse," she said. "They are truly exemplary of the I CARE Core Values."

Newsletter committee members include Patricia Curtis, RN; Mercy Dela Pena, RN; Sharon Donahue, RN; Billie Jo Hasken, RN; Precious Jackson, RN; Ashlei Polk, CNA; Bevanna Ralph, RN; and Robert Williams, CNA.

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