A grieving family turned a tragedy into an opportunity to give
back to nurses around the globe—including right here in Davie County.
In memory of their
loved one, J. Patrick Barnes, and in tribute to the exceptional nursing care he
received, the Barnes family created the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses.
Local nurse Michael Crumby, R.N., just became the first recipient of the award at
Wake Forest Baptist Health – Davie Medical Center.
33-year-old Barnes was hospitalized in Texas with an autoimmune disorder called
idiopathic thrombocytopenic pupura. The Amarillo resident remained in the
hospital for eight weeks, until his death. During this time, his family
witnessed what they called “the best in nursing.”
Soon after he
passed away, Barnes’ wife and parents created a foundation in his memory. They
determined the purpose of their organization would be to honor nurses like the
ones who cared for Barnes. The Barnes felt the best way to do that would be
through an award program, so they began partnering with hospitals to offer
special recognition to outstanding nurses at each organization. They named the
foundation and award DAISY, which stands for “diseases attacking the immune
The DAISY Award is
offered at more than 2,600 hospitals in all 50 states and in 15 other
countries. Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center has been recognizing members of
its nursing staff with the DAISY Award for several years, and this year Davie
Medical Center began participating, said Adam Ridenhour, chaplain at Davie
Medical Center and co-chair of the DAISY committee.
“It has been a
gift to be able to start the program here,” he said. “We want to acknowledge
the hard work our nurses do, and we also want to show our community that we
offer compassionate care along with world-class medicine. This award, born from
such a beautiful story, allows us to do that.”
While the DAISY
Award is international, each hospital offers the award at intervals based on
the size of its nursing staff. While Wake Forest Baptist presents the award
each month, Davie Medical Center will offer it twice a year—in May, during
National Nurses Week, and in October.
Each hospital has
its own DAISY Award committee that selects a recipient from a pool of nominees.
At Davie Medical Center, the committee is made up of a range of staff members,
including nurses, said Beth Stanley, M.S.N., R.N., emergency department nurse
manager, and co-chair of the DAISY committee. The nominees, whose names can be
submitted by patients, patients’ family members or anyone on the hospital
staff, are presented on blind ballots. This is done to ensure the honoree is
selected solely on the merits described in his or her nomination.
“We didn’t know it
was Michael we were voting for when we chose our first award winner,” said
Stanley. “We just knew we were selecting someone who went above and beyond for
Crumby, a staff
nurse in the joint replacement unit, said he was a little shocked when he
learned he would be Davie Medical Center’s first DAISY Award recipient. Those
who know him, however, were not surprised.
“Michael is known
as the MacGyver of Davie Medical Center,” said Susan Bachmeier, M.S.N., R.N.,
chief nursing officer. “He can come up with a solution to any problem. And he’s
an outstanding nurse. One of the things mentioned in his nomination is that he
works with patients’ physical therapists to ensure the patient is getting the
best experience. He also encourages the patients throughout their therapy
sessions and ensures their pain is managed well. He does all this even though
it isn’t a required part of his job.”
Crumby provided valuable input from the bedside perspective when the medical
center was building its new inpatient wing.
“He helped us
ensure we weren’t just creating the best care space for our nurses and
physicians, but also the most comfortable surroundings for our patients and
their families,” said Bachmeier. “He is one of our best and brightest, and we
are so proud of him.”
praised Crumby’s leadership skills during the transition from the old
Mocksville facility to the new medical center in Bermuda Run. “He was a leader
every step of the way, functioning as a charge nurse, assuring supplies were
ordered and available, and being a cheerleader for his colleagues during the
recognition comes with a number of benefits, including discounts for programs
sponsored by national nursing associations, and a pin for the nurse’s badge.
recipient isn’t the only one acknowledged; the nursing unit receives Cinnabon
cinnamon rolls. Cinnabon rolls were one of the only foods Barnes could enjoy
during his hospital stay, so the Barnes family recruited the corporation as one
of the sponsors of the award.
The actual DAISY
Award that Crumby received is a sculpture known as “The Healer’s Touch.” The
DAISY Foundation imports the awards from Zimbabwe, where they are crafted by
artisans from the region.
Stanley said the
sculpture is aptly named, as it describes the compassionate connection nurses
like Crumby have with their patients.
Crumby said he is
humbled by the healer’s touch connotation, and stated that his care
philosophies are simple: consistency, communication and compassion.
“I make sure each
of my patients receives the same level of care, regardless of who they are or
what their situation is,” he said. “I also want to help them communicate to me
what their needs are, so that I can communicate those needs well to our team.
And, ultimately, I want to be sure my patients are taken care of the way I
would want myself or one of my family members cared for.”
When it comes to
the recognition he received for patient care, Crumby said he feels it is validation
for Davie Medical Center as a whole.
“We have such a
great environment to work in, with great administrators and management who give
me and the other nurses what we need to provide good patient care,” he said.
“This award doesn’t just acknowledge me; it shows what our organization
“That’s the beauty
of Davie,” said Ridenhour. “We’re on the cutting edge of medicine, and we’re
patient centered in terms of care.”
Bachmeier said the
DAISY award is rewarding to the nurse staff, in particular. “It means a lot to
us to know we have this here,” she said. “It is a national award that is well
known in the industry. It’s a pretty big deal.”