Denise McLaughlin, RN Receives DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses

Denise McLaughlin, RN, Certified Diabetic Educator for the University of Vermont Health Network – Elizabethtown Community Hospital (ECH) was honored this week with The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses® as part of its Hospital Week and Nurses Week celebration.

McLaughlin was selected for the honor after a hospital committee reviewed nominations submitted by coworkers and patients.  Her compassion and dedication were highlighted in a nomination from a patient’s family which also credited her for making a positive impact with her approach as the patient no longer needed diabetes medication after just six months under her care.

Julie Tromblee, RN, Chief Nursing Officer for Elizabethtown Community Hospital, stated, “Denise is an incredible champion of our Diabetes Education Program. She can often be found at one of our health centers, hospitals or even a patient’s home coaching on healthy food choices or trouble shooting an insulin pump.”  McLaughlin also runs the hospital’s Diabetes Support Group and Wellness Rx Program and promotes health and exercise through the program and health fairs.

McLaughlin joined the organization in 2015 coming from Moses Ludington Hospital, now part of ECH.  She started as night nurse on the inpatient unit, quickly setting sights on a new role. “Denise knew early in her career with us that she wanted to part of Diabetes Education. “With her passion and guidance, the program has grown so much and our community is stronger as a result,” added Tromblee.   

During the surprise recognition ceremony with colleagues, McLaughlin was presented with a certificate commending her as an "Extraordinary Nurse" which reads: "In deep appreciation of all you do, who you are, and the incredibly meaningful difference you make in the lives of so many people."  Honorees also receive a DAISY Award pin and a beautiful and meaningful sculpture called A Healer’s Touch, hand-carved by artists of the Shona Tribe in Zimbabwe.

Elizabethtown Community Hospital launched the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses in early 2018 as way to recognize and reward licensed nurses for making a meaningful difference in the lives of their patients. Nomination forms and boxes are located at each of the hospital’s main entrances and online at Nurses may be nominated by patients, families and colleagues.  A committee reviews nominations and twice a year, awards the honor to a deserving nurse. 

The award is part of the DAISY Foundation’s mission to recognize the extraordinary, compassionate nursing care they provide patients and families every day. The DAISY Foundation is a national not-for-profit organization, established in memory of J. Patrick Barnes, by members of his family.  Patrick died at the age of 33 in late 1999 from complications of idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP), a little known but not uncommon auto-immune disease. (DAISY is an acronym for Diseases Attacking the Immune System.)  The care Patrick and his family received from nurses while he was ill inspired this unique means of thanking nurses for making a profound difference in the lives of their patients and patient families. Click here for more information on the DAISY Award.