Chatham-Kent Health Alliance Recognizes Service to Hospital and Exceptional Performance
CHATHAM-KENT: December 14, 2021 – Chatham-Kent Health Alliance (CKHA) honoured staff, physicians and volunteers of the organization through its annual Service Recognition ceremony and presentation of the Compassionate Caregiver Award of Distinction, the Vicente and Delia Calma Memorial Nurse Excellency Award, Alliance Awards of Excellence and Resiliency Award. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s ceremony was held via a virtual pre-recorded ceremony that premiered on Thursday, December 9, 2021.
More than 300 long-service employees, volunteers, physicians and retirees were honoured this year for their years of service to CKHA.
Dr. Michael McElligott was recognized for 50 years of service. Marlene Anchor, Mark Henry, Erica Lubbers, Debbie Najdzion, Cathy Noorenberghe, JoAnna Olbach-Steele, Annette O’Neil and Annette Thibert were recognized for 40 years of service. Fourteen received 35-year recognition: Dr. Kathryn Bailey, Elaine Benoit, Lois Blair, Janet Cobb, Jennifer Courtice, Cheryl-Ann Fisher, Sheila Klein, Michelle Martin, Dr. Dean Matsusaki, Lisa Richardson, Joanne Ruggiero, Wendy Scaman, Linda Strevel and Dr. David Sullivan. Honoured staff, physicians and volunteers also included 73 five year, 62 ten year, 44 fifteen year, 31 twenty year, 8 twenty-five year and 14 thirty year recipients.
In addition, CKHA paid tribute to 49 retirees:
Dr. Ralph Goad
Dr. Susan Munro
Dr. Ian Johnston
Dr. Grant Fraser
Dr. Daniel Mahoney
Dr. Linda Sinnaeve
Dr. Adrian Verburg
Dr. Donna Watterud
“We were delighted to recognize and celebrate our valued staff, volunteers and physicians for their commitment to health care in Chatham and Rural Kent through our virtual recognition ceremony,” said Lori Marshall, President and CEO, CKHA. “We want to thank our team for their continued dedication to safe, high quality care. We are proud of their accomplishments and their continued perseverance in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
During the broadcast, exceptional performance was recognized with the Compassionate Caregiver Award of Distinction now in its 14th year, the Vicente and Delia Calma Memorial Nursing Excellency Award in its 1st year, the Alliance Awards of Excellence now in their 17th year and the Resiliency Award now in its 2nd year. The Compassionate Caregiver Award of Distinction honours an individual or team who exemplifies Patient and Family Centred Care and works to advance quality of care while demonstrating unconditional compassion and respect. In its first year, the Vicente and Delia Calma Memorial Nurse Excellency Award honours a nursing staff member whose contributions provide and advance quality of care, contributing to the overall well-being of patients and their families. The recipient is a nurse who provides extraordinary patient care, is a positive role model and is committed to seeking opportunities to gain new knowledge. The Alliance Awards of Excellence recognize staff, physicians, volunteers and teams who exemplify performance excellence within and beyond the health care environment. The Resiliency Award recognizes a staff member, physician or volunteer who has demonstrated resilience and shown their ability to adapt to change and be flexible. This award was established in 2020 as a tribute to the resiliency that was seen from the organization to accomplish its goals. This year’s awards were presented by CKHA’s Senior Leadership Team and members of the Board of Directors during CKHA’s virtual recognition ceremony. Recipients were selected from peer nominations by a panel of staff and past honourees.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to congratulate the nominees and recipients of this year’s Compassionate Caregiver Award of Distinction, Vicente and Delia Calma Memorial Nurse Excellency Award, Alliance Awards of Excellence and Resiliency Award,” said Alan Wildeman, Board Chair, CKHA. “These awards represent the calibre of our people; it’s evident they continuously strive for excellence and compassion in the delivery of high quality, Patient and Family Centred Care.”
Recipients of the Compassionate Caregiver Award of Distinction, Vicente and Delia Calma Memorial Nurse Excellency Award, Alliance Awards of Excellence and Resiliency Award are:
Compassionate Caregiver Award of Distinction: Charlene Grayer-Cook, Social Worker – Charlene is an exemplary social worker who delivers compassionate care to her patients on a daily basis. She is deeply committed to serving patients who may be abusing substances, homeless, and/or suffering from various mental health problems. Charlene is patient and kind and always willing to help others – whether it be her patients or her team members. She has a capacity to empathize with people from various situations and circumstances as she listens and values their stories. She is person-centred, caring, non-judgmental, and selfless with her time and energy. Charlene truly exemplifies what it means to be a compassionate caregiver.
Vicente and Delia Calma Memorial Nurse Excellency Award: Cheryl Nogueira, Registered Nurse, Operating Room – Cheryl is a versatile nurse who can adapt and perform well in any area she is assigned to. She possesses a welcoming nature and answers and addresses the concerns of her patients to the best of her ability. She makes sure she puts her patients’ needs above hers, sometimes working beyond her required time or sacrificing her break to provide continuity of care to her patients. Cheryl is truly patient-focused, always willing to lend a helping hand to colleagues, address family members’ concerns, and has a strong desire to learn. The pandemic has been a real challenge to all health care workers but Cheryl has not been deterred and continues her strong commitment to caring with compassion for patients and their families.
Mission Award: Darlene Tetzlaff, Director, Finance – Darlene is whole-heartedly dedicated to CKHA’s Mission of “One Team – Two Sites: Serving Chatham and Rural Kent.” Darlene has served at CKHA for over ten years in various roles within the finance department. Throughout the pandemic, the financial reporting requirements multiplied and Darlene worked with her team to ensure CKHA accurately reported the impacts of COVID-19 and the hospital remained financially stable. She has not limited herself to just her finance-focused work. In the early days of the pandemic, Darlene stepped up to be the site lead at CKHA’s Wallaceburg Site. At the outset of the pandemic, she made herself available to ensure the Wallaceburg team and the high quality care they provide were also at the forefront of all discussions.
Vision Award: Melissa Johnson, Director, Planning, Performance and Health Information – Melissa has worked through two significant issues over the past year: the complexities of the pandemic, and the complexities of a new Hospital Information System. Both have brought about the need for developing new ways of data collection, registration and flow of information all while keeping the patient journey in mind. Melissa’s contribution to the COVID-19 Assessment Centre resulted in efficient workflow for staff and patients, while ensuring proper data collection. Data flow for CKHA’s Hospital Information System hinges on workflow and Melissa worked with all departments to improve the valuable information her team collects to analyze and improve hospital funding and outcomes. Her dedication and enthusiasm in developing solutions that benefit patients and the community are the perfect example of CKHA’s Vision “Together, Growing a Healthier Community.”
Values Award: Richard Barry, Information Systems Coordinator – Rich is an integral part of the IT team, taking the leadership liaison role for all IT initiatives. He balances competing pressures from multiple stakeholders to ensure projects are completed on time. Rich was an integral leader during the implementation of CKHA’s new Hospital Information System; he assessed space, set up hundreds of computer units, trained staff, and was often on call to assist whenever needed. He has been committed to not only the new system, but to several other projects such as setting up the Field Hospital and COVID-19 Assessment Centre. Additionally, he continues to provide support to the Communications team with the website and promotional videos. It is evident in his every day actions that Rich is dedicated to CKHA’s Values.
Team Award: COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Volunteers – Upon hearing about the need for help, these volunteers quickly answered the call to achieve the common goal of making the client experience at the clinic as efficient, safe and welcoming as possible. While all CKHA volunteer assignments can have their challenges, the vaccination clinics were more dynamic and flexible than any assignment into which CKHA has placed volunteers. This meant volunteer schedules shifted constantly, they were assigned to a variety of roles within the clinic, and they were expected to be knowledgeable of frequently changing and improving policies. Because of their dedication, the clinic was able to provide better quality service, a safer experience, and an efficient and quick visit for clients.
Resiliency Award: Lynn Richie, Registered Nurse/Unit Clinical Leader, Intensive Care and Progressive Care Units – Lynn has been dedicated to CKHA for many years, however it is safe to say that the pandemic has truly put her strength and resiliency to the test. Lynn has continued to go above and beyond during this difficult year. She has an ability to work through these unprecedented times with laughter, tears, true honesty and her foundation of compassionate care. Lynn and the ICU/PCU team have seen first-hand the impact the pandemic has had on patients and families and have responded through flexibility in their delivery of Patient and Family Centred Care. Lynn is a great reflection of demonstrating resiliency as she has continued to show her passion and dedication to the unit through many challenges.
For more information or to request a high quality photo please contact:
Emily Field, Communications Specialist
Chatham-Kent Health Alliance
519.352.6401 x 5326