Every day, a growing number of dedicated nurses care for aging adults and people with complex medical needs inside their homes, administering daily medications, providing relief from the symptoms and stress of a serious illness, and managing personalized plans of care.
To pay tribute to the specialized and tireless work of thousands of nurses throughout the network, BrightStar Care launched a national Nurse of the Year program to recognize the nurses who are working hard to deliver A Higher Standard of Home Care each and every day.
This year, our Director of Nursing, Mary-Loving Harman was nominated. Here is the nomination letter about Mary:
In the almost 2 years that she has been my Director of Nursing, Mary-Loving Harman has dramatically improved the clinical leadership and patient-centered focus of our agency.
She is dedicated and has a tremendous passion for what she does to improve the lives of our patients.
Truly believing in BrightStar’s mission and values, Mary routinely puts in hours at night and on weekends in order to make sure our clients receive the highest level of care.
The impact that Mary has had is validated by the consistently high Patient Impact scores, as well as feedback from customers and caregivers.
She is viewed by clients and their family members as a trusted resource.
In short, they love Mary.
Mary routinely goes out of her way to ensure her clients receive the highest level of care.
In particular, when a crisis arises, Mary really shines.
Middle of night, weekend, it doesn’t matter.
The most recent example was from last week.
We had a client that was referred to us from a hospice agency that didn’t have staffing available at 7am on Sunday so they called our agency.
The patient had been recently discharged from a nearby hospital and the family was distraught over their inability to care for their bedbound loved one.
Mary was able to respond immediately, go directly to the client’s home, provide assistance and training to the family on how to catheter, transfer, and bathe the client.
By the time Mary left the client’s home, the family was in tears of gratitude due to the help that Mary was able to provide during a difficult time and on such short notice.
During the ice storms that have hit North Texas for the past to winters, Mary would drive caregivers to their assignments to ensure our patients were well cared for in spite of the dangerous weather.
Despite her very busy schedule, Mary always finds time to visit patients when they’re in the hospital or rehab, “drop by” clients homes to check on them (in addition to the required supervisory visits and reassessments), and volunteer her time at a community health clinic.
When a client has a doctor’s appointment, Mary often accompanies the patient to ensure optimal communication and continuity of care.
As well as to make sure the physician knows about BrightStar.
We have had numerous comments from physicians like one we received recently who said “wow, I’ve never seen a Director of Nursing from any agency in here before to follow up with us regarding a patient.
You’re right, you guys are different”.
Mary’s high standards extend to our team, as she holds not only herself accountable, but all team members as well.
Understanding the challenges of building and developing a patient-centered care team, Mary implemented a point system to better assess and reinforce caregiver performance and patient care.
Since implementing the point system our already high quality scores have gotten even better.
Mary continually strives to improve her skill set and knowledge.
Prior to BrightStar, Mary had managed clinics, worked in the ER, numerous hospitals, pain centers, and critical care centers,
Despite her excellent nursing background, Mary had limited exposure to in-home care.
Understanding the need to get up to speed quickly, Mary took full advantage of all the resources that BrightStar has to offer.
She utilized all of the on-line resources and sought out other BrightStar associates to gain from their knowledge and experience.
Additionally Mary pursued self-study courses on home healthcare and infusion care.
As a result Mary has accelerated her learning curve dramatically, and is looked upon as a leader among her Director of Nursing peer group.
In her administrative responsibilities, Mary has been proactive in addressing licensure, policies, and procedures in order to ensure compliance with state, Joint Commission, and BrightStar standards.
This has been demonstrated through Mary’s timely and thorough completion of Joint Commission survey related operational improvements.
Though she is focused on our patients, Mary also is aware that BrightStar is a business and understands the importance of building relationships and driving revenue with our national account partners.
Since Mary has become our DON, our agency’s national account revenue has more than doubled, largely due to the high level of care and professionalism that Mary demonstrates in developing true partnerships.
I appreciate your consideration of Mary-Loving Harman for the Nurse of the Year award.
I feel she demonstrates all that is truly great and unique about BrightStar, and would be an excellent representative of the award.