ROCKFORD, Illinois – SwedishAmerican is pleased to announce this year’s Daisy Foundation Nurse of the Year Award winner is Chelsea Keehnen.

A registered nurse in SwedishAmerican’s Emergency Department, Keehnen was surprised with the award by her colleagues at her workplace Tuesday. The Daisy Award was one of several honors handed out this week at SwedishAmerican in honor of National Nurses Week (May 6-12).

Keehnen’s co-workers nominated her with the following story:

“Chelsea went above-and-beyond for a pediatric patient who was in the Emergency Department awaiting placement. This young patient required one-on-one supervision at all times due to his complex psychiatric history. The patient had no family or familiar faces around. Chelsea realized the young boy was struggling to remain in the same room for an extended period of time so she received permission to take the patient to play Four Square in the ambulance bay along with another staff member. She also asked the EMS agency if the boy could be allowed to see the ambulance. The EMS agency agreed and allowed the patient to sit in the passenger seat of the ambulance and play with the sirens. The young boy was laughing and smiling from ear to ear. This display of compassion was so heartwarming. Chelsea was able to think outside the box to help this boy feel happiness even just for a little while. Chelsea also helped to find placement for the patient along with the right procedures and medication for him.”

The Daisy Foundation was established by Mark and Bonnie Barnes to honor the exceptional nursing care their son, Patrick, received while battling ITP (Idiopathic Thrombocytopenia Purpura). By honoring the nurses who go “above and beyond” with the Daisy Award, healthcare organizations have an outstanding tool to add focus to their patient/family-centered care throughout the year.

This year’s list of Daisy Award nominees included:

  • June 2020: Missy Romero, Mother/Baby Unit
  • July 2020: Beth McNeill, Critical Care Unit
  • August 2020: Jeff Conus, Emergency Department
  • September 2020: Kristine Kinney, Mother/Baby Unit
  • October 2020: Nichaela Fiorenza, Critical Care Unit
  • November 2020: Chrissy Lange, Post-Anesthesia Care Unit
  • December 2020: Kim Reese, Critical Care Unit
  • January 2021: Jackie Koenig, Critical Care Unit
  • February 2021: Chelsea Keehnen, Emergency Department
  • March 2021: Kim Wolgast, Emergency Department
  • April 2021: Teri Weaver, Michelle Allen, Zarana Patel, Margaret Hare, Alisha Folk, Alex Paganis, NICU

Other award winners this week at SwedishAmerican included:

  • Cassandra Alcock, APRN Preceptor of the Year
  • Shenetha Hayes, PCT Preceptor of the Year
  • Tammy Robinson, Outpatient Preceptor of the Year
  • Emily Winder, BEE Award of the Year
  • Stephanie Rich and Beverly Ryan, Winning Posters