daisy award winners melissa wiley and kate mcqueeney

Working in healthcare means being present for the most significant milestones in people’s lives, from birth to the end of life. Melissa Wiley, Kate McQueeney and Jessica Hughes are all nurses in Peninsula Regional Medical’s Emergency Department. Their compassion toward a patient showed their caring went beyond clinical skills, and earned them the Daisy Award for Extraordinary Nursing.

On a recent night, Wiley, McQueeney and Hughes were caring for a patient who was nearing the end of his life. Sadly, this patient had only one family member who was experiencing a medical crisis on the western shore and was not able to be with him. As the patient was being made medically comfortable, the nurses dimmed the lights, turned soothing music on one of their phones and placed it on the patient's chest so he could hear it. They proceeded to sit in the room with him during a busy time in the ED to ensure that he was not alone when he died. 

These nurses demonstrated the epitome of bringing your hearts to work, and providing dignity to a dying patient. They were honored with the Daisy Award in a ceremony before their colleagues and received a certificate commending her for being an extraordinary nurse. The certificate reads: “In deep appreciation of all you do, who you are, and the incredibly meaningful difference you make in the lives of so many people.” They were also presented with fresh flowers on behalf of the Peninsula Regional Medical staff, and a sculpture called A Healer’s Touch, hand-carved by artists of the Shona Tribe in Zimbabwe.

To nominate an exceptional nurse, visit www.peninsula.org/DaisyAward and share a story.

The not-for-profit DAISY Foundation is based in Glen Ellen, CA, and was established by family members in memory of J. Patrick Barnes.  Patrick died at the age of 33 in late 1999 from complications of Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP), a little-known but not uncommon auto-immune disease.  The care Patrick and his family received from nurses while he was ill inspired this unique means of thanking nurses for making a profound difference in the lives of their patients and patient families.

President and Co-Founder of The DAISY Foundation Bonnie Barnes said, “When Patrick was critically ill, our family experienced firsthand the remarkable skill and care nurses provide patients every day and night. Yet these unsung heroes are seldom recognized for the super-human work they do. The kind of work the nurses at PRMC are called on to do every day epitomizes the purpose of The DAISY Award.”