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‘Sustained excellence’: Critical Care Unit at Sentara awarded gold-level Beacon

Rebecca Barnabi
nurse doctor medical health
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The American Association of Critical Care Nursing (AACN) has bestowed the highly coveted gold-level Beacon Award upon the Critical Care Unit (CCU) at Sentara RMH Medical Center.

The Beacon Award is the second consecutive recognition for the unit’s outstanding commitment to critical care excellence. The Beacon Award program is a comprehensive initiative consisting of three key modules: Patient Outcomes, Work Environment and Nursing Workforce. Each module application enables participating units to showcase the processes employed by direct care nurses, nurse leaders, and collaborative partners in achieving commendable unit outcomes.

“I am incredibly proud of the Critical Care team for this achievement. The delivery of high-quality patient outcomes combined with success in creating a healthy work environment produces synergy for sustained excellence,” said Sentara RMH Chief Nursing Officer Gina Yost.

For patients and their families, the Beacon Award signifies a commitment to exceptional care within a unit prioritizing patient well-being. Nurses working in Beacon Award-winning units, such as Sentara RMH CCU, experience a positive and supportive work environment characterized by increased collaboration, higher morale and lower turnover rates.

“This award recognizes the compassionate, top-quality care provided to our community by our nurses, support staff, and providers,”  Jenay Mason, Critical Care Unit director, said. “It acknowledges the dedication to a collaborative approach with our multidisciplinary team to provide critical care services to our community.”

Receiving the gold-level Beacon Award places Sentara RMH CCU among an elite group of healthcare providers who have demonstrated staff-driven excellence, leading to sustained unit performance and improved patient outcomes that surpass national benchmarks. The gold-level designation is a testament to the Critical Care Unit’s commitment to its patients.

“It is an honor to be recognized by the AACN for achieving the Gold Beacon award for the second time,” Samantha Leontie, CCU Clinical Manager, said. “It validates and confirms the amazing teamwork, evidenced-based practice, and patient-centered care that our team provides. I couldn’t be more proud to lead such a stellar group of health-care professionals.”

AACN recognizes units seeking the Beacon Award for meaningful recognition on their journey to excellence, with the bronze, silver and gold-level distinctions representing progressive achievements in critical care standards.

The Sentara RMH CCU’s achievement of its second gold-level Beacon Award exemplifies the unit’s commitment to the highest standards of patient care, making it a beacon of excellence in the field of critical care.

“Achieving the gold-level Beacon Award for the second time is a testament to the dedication of our CCU staff. It reflects their commitment to providing outstanding care, fostering a positive work environment, and continually striving for excellence in critical care,” Doug Moyer, president of Sentara RMH Medical Center, said.

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca J. Barnabi is the national editor of Augusta Free Press. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, she began her journalism career at The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star. In 2013, she was awarded first place for feature writing in the Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Awards Program, and was honored by the Virginia School Boards Association’s 2019 Media Honor Roll Program for her coverage of Waynesboro Schools. Her background in newspapers includes writing about features, local government, education and the arts.