Nurse Jeanie Voelker receives Rapides Regional’s Daisy Award


It’s the little things that patients notice most – a warm blanket, a kind word, or just a little extra time. And it’s those things that Jeanie Voelker, Rapides Regional Medical Center’s most recent Daisy Award winner, provides on a daily basis.

Jeanie Voelker, RN, is the charge nurse in Radiology and has worked at Rapides Regional for 17 years.

“Jeanie goes out of her way to meet the needs of our patients,” said Marion Satcher, Jeanie’s Radiology coworker. “I remember one patient who was waiting to have an X-ray. Jeanie stopped to ask if she was OK and found out the patient was chilled. After getting a warm blanket, and discovering the patient was very anxious about an upcoming surgery, Jeanie sat down and talked with the patient about the surgery.

“In the patient’s words, ‘Jeanie comforted me when I really needed comfort.  Everyone was busy and many had passed me in the waiting area, but Jeanie got involved.”

Her co-workers describe Voelker as detail-oriented, responsible, dependable, dedicated and understanding, saying – “We need more nurses like Jeanie.”

That’s why Voelker was chosen to receive this most recent DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses. The award, presented in collaboration with The American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE), is designed to recognize the super-human efforts nurses perform every day.

The award at Rapides Regional Medical Center is co-sponsored by United Healthcare and is presented to a different nurse each quarter.

The award looks at the areas of accountability, compassion, intuition, regard for patient’s wishes and integrity.

More than 500 hospitals around the country participate in the DAISY award program.

The not-for-profit DAISY Foundation is based in Glen Ellen, Calif., and was established by the family of J. Patrick Barnes. Barnes was 33 years old when he died from complications of the auto-immune disease, Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura. Barnes’ family established the Foundation and this award as a way of saying “Thank You” to nurses everywhere for the difference they make in the lives of their patients and patient families.

Voelker received a sculpture – hand-carved by the Shona tribe in Africa – called “A Healer’s Touch,” along with an armful of daisies and enough cinnamon rolls to share with the coworkers on her unit. (Cinnamon rolls were one of the things Patrick Barnes requested while in the hospital – and he wanted enough to share with all the nurses on the shift.) She also received a gift certificate for a spa facial, courtesy of Barnes’ sister-in-law Danna Barnes.

“We are proud to be among the hospitals participating in the DAISY Award program,” said Rapides Regional Medical Center’s Chief Nursing Officer Tina Coker, RN, MSN, MBA. “Nurses are heroes everyday. “It’s important that our nurses know their work is highly valued, and The DAISY Foundation provides a way for us to do that.”

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