FAH Hospital Policy Blog

Perspectives on health policy affecting America's hospitals and the patients we serve.

FAH Policy Blog Team

Honoring FAH Member Frontline Warriors

During Nurses Week 2021 we want to honor those who stand out for going above and beyond at Federation affiliated hospitals from coast to coast. These are true frontline warriors who serve their patients in unique ways.

Natalie Belezzuoli, BSN, RN for Labor and Delivery

Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center, San Luis Obispo, CA

Natalie was recently presented with The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses. She was nominated by a co-worker who said, “Natalie is your finest, and represents the level of care your institution definitely strives to meet on a day-to-day basis. Thank you for supporting our family with yours.”

A previous patient commented on the Facebook post recognizing Natalie’s award saying “[She is] definitely deserving [of this award]. My first surrogacy at Sierra Vista with two weeks of hospitalization was made tolerable because of Natalie’s caring personality and smile.”

Other comments read “Best nurse ever!!” and “I feel blessed to be your co-worker!”

Sheila and Alyssa Felton, Mother/Daughter Registered Nurses

Shoals Hospital, Muscle Shoals, AL & North Alabama Medical Center, Florence, AL

It’s a family affair for mother and daughter RNs, Sheila and Alyssa Felton.

Alyssa says she followed in her mother’s footsteps, literally.  “As a kid, there were many days I’d have to go to the hospital after school and sit in her office while she worked.”

Sheila Felton worked as a Critical Care manager at Shoals Hospital for 25 years. Now, Alyssa is a Critical Care nurse at North Alabama Medical Center.

“I’m proud,” said Sheila. “She’s an excellent nurse. Her patients love her.”

Sheila now works in Pre-Admission Testing at NAMC.

Alyssa admits she gets excited when her mother comes to the unit to pick up charts. “It makes my day to see her up here.”

Alyssa has worked at NAMC for nearly two years. “I wanted her to work here,” said Sheila. “I told her it’s time to come home. It’s good to have family here.”

Elisa Green, Advance Practicing Nurse

Saint Clare’s Health, Morris County, NJ

Last year, the New Jersey State Nurse’s Association nonprofit Institute For Nursing (IFN) launched its C.A.R.E.S Award, a peer-nominated honor created to pay tribute to nurses who exemplify the best in the profession in the following five practice areas: Clinical Practice, Administration, Research, Education, and Support. Elisa was nominated for and won the 2020 award for Clinical Practice.

Roxanna Hinojosa, Registered Nurse

Mission Regional Medical Center, Mission TX

Roxanna Hinojosa recently won The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses. She was nominated by a patient’s family member for this award.

The family member stated: “My 83-year-old mom has advanced dementia and Alzheimer’s. I hurried to the cafeteria and had a quick salad and a moment to myself. When I came back into the room, I found Roxy all snuggled up on a chair right next to my mom with her rolling computer monitor cart pulled in close. They were looking at photo after photo of beautiful flowers and gardens from around the world on the computer screen, oohing and ahhing in unison. Roxy had stayed with her the entire time because she could tell mom was worried. They had also decorated the breathing exercise instrument with cute farm animal stickers and colored a picture of a cow. My mom’s face was aglow with happiness and I was instantly calmed.”

Roxanna was recognized for doing everything she can to make patients feel comfortable, safe, and supported.

Stephanie Holder, RN, Emergency Department (ED) Nurse

Southern Regional Medical Center, Riverdale, GA

Stephanie Holder, RN, is also a distinguished recipient of The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses. She began her tenure at Southern Regional in the summer of 2006 as a Nurse Tech and upon graduating from nursing school started her ED nursing career with the hospital nearly 13 years ago. She was selected as the DAISY Award recipient for her exceptional compassion toward her patients. To understand her level of dedication to our patients, one only needs to read a snippet from her nomination:

Stephanie was providing care for an elderly patient in the ED whose highlevel of care was quite demanding. During his treatment, Stephanie talked with the patient at length and assessed that he had been stuck indoors in bed for many months due to his deteriorating health. His advanced age, limited family visitation due to COVID, and his acute care needs were visibly wearing on him and he stated that he “just wanted to have the sun on his face and be normal for a while.” Stephanie found a way to make something special happen for the patient. She gathered the portable equipment required to safely and appropriately care and monitor the patient, arranged for a peer to assist, and took the patient outside for dinner. While outside, Stephanie fed the patient and talked with him – just two people out enjoying a beautiful day. She was able to lift his spirits for a bit while continually attending to his acute healthcare and physical needs. True to her humility of character, Stephanie’s nurse’s note recording of the event simply stated “Assisted patient to eat clear liquid dinner tray.”

Rebecca Onyirioha, RN, MSN, IBCLCLactation Nurse

Peggy V. Helmerich Center, Hillcrest HealthCare System, Tulsa, OK

Rebecca says she didn’t grow up wanting to be a nurse, but in college a desire to care for people drew her to the bedside.

She started her career in the nursery, then transitioned to a post-partum nurse. Rebecca is currently a lactation specialist in the NICU at the Peggy V. Helmerich Women’s Health Center at Hillcrest HealthCare System in Tulsa, where she teaches mothers how to properly breastfeed.

Rebecca, who just got her Masters Degree, is also a proponent higher education for nurses. It ties in perfectly to her advice for new nurses – never stop learning! Hear directly from Rebecca about what she loves about her job below!

We salute these nurses and the thousands of others who selflessly serve patients every day!