Adena Physicians & Staff, Community News

Compassion, Judgement Land Brittany Wentworth Top Nursing Honor

News Image

Adena Health nurse Brittany Wentworth understands from firsthand experience – both from a patient’s and professional perspective -- the important role nurses play in patients’ lives.

“I got into health care originally as a PCA after I had twins who were in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) and I saw those nurses make such an impact in our lives,” said Brittany, a nurse at Adena Regional Medical Center. “We were there every single day for five weeks and we really got to know those nurses and I said, ‘I want to do that.’ Now, I’m that person for the families -- that point of contact, that smiling face they see every time they’re here.”

The family of a young girl cared for by Brittany was certainly glad she was there, thinking enough of her work that it nominated her for the health system’s first quarter Daisy Award for excellence in nursing. Brittany was selected to win the award among a field of very strong nominees.

The couple submitting the nomination said they spent almost a week and some very long nights in the hospital with their niece, whose condition was fluctuating up and down throughout that time. Brittany’s involvement in the girl’s care, however, was a needed bright spot in the experience.

“Brittany stood out to all of us in a way that was so unique and genuine,” the nomination reads. “Our niece absolutely loved her, wanted Brittany to be her nurse every single day, all day and night if she could have. Brittany talked her through all of the procedures, medications, and tough IV sticks while showing absolutely astonishing levels of compassion and servitude.”

It was her nursing judgment, however, that really hit home for the family. Brittany, after witnessing some of the symptoms the young girl was experiencing, suggested that a CT scan for a pulmonary embolism be performed. It was, and it ended up being an important factor in the girl’s care moving forward.

“She used the absolute best nursing judgement we have ever seen in modern nursing and requested a CTPE due to some of our niece’s symptoms,” the family wrote. “I am so proud to see that these types of nurses still exist on the floor. Brittany deserves every accolade, every thank you, and every ounce of respect.”

If you had asked her when she first started in health care if she would have seen herself making such a request, she’s not sure. With time and experience, however, things change.

“If you ask my co-workers, it’s been since I became a nurse that I’ve really grown a nurse’s backbone,” she said. “I was very mousy when I first started here, but I have gotten my voice and I get involved with these patients like they’re my own family.”

It’s those patient interactions she craves, and getting to know her patients helps her provide the best care possible.

“I look for those human connections, even if it’s just learning that if they like to take their meds with an iced tea, I’ll bring them an iced tea, things like that,” Brittany said. “I like to find those connections where I can touch or change their lives.”

The Daisy Award recognizes that level of commitment and is celebrated by health systems around the globe as a mark of extraordinary nursing care. For her selection, Brittany received a special pin for her employee badge, a hand-carved Healer’s Touch sculpture signed by the artist from Zimbabwe, a bouquet of daisies, and a box of cinnamon rolls to share with her colleagues. A recognition banner also will be displayed in her unit throughout the quarter until the next Daisy Award recipient is selected.

The honor also provides validation for Brittany regarding her choice to pursue a nursing career.

“I became a nurse to serve the Lord – I’m a woman of faith, and that’s what I do is serve the Lord with my hands,” she said. “This is kind of a confirmation that with what I’m doing, I’m on the right path and doing what the Lord has told me to do.”