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Press Releases

Holy Name Medical Center Receives Beacon Award

Date: 4/14/2010

Progressive Care Unit and ICU garner high marks for nursing practice

Teaneck - Holy Name Medical Center's One North progressive care nursing unit and the Medical Center's Intensive Care Unit (ICU) have received the Beacon Award for Critical Care Excellence® from the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN). The award was created by the AACN to challenge acute and critical care nurses to improve patient care on progressive care and critical care units, and reward commitment to high quality standards and exceptional care.

The Beacon application process and the award itself provide the critical care community with a quantitative and qualitative way to view their achievements in professional practice, patient outcomes and the health of the work environment, and a means to measure themselves against quality standards based on evidence-based national criteria.

As Beacon Award recipients, the Medical Center's One North Unit and its ICU meet or exceed national standards in the following areas:
  • Recruitment and retention
  • Education, training and mentoring
  • Research and evidence-based practice
  • Patient outcomes
  • Leadership and organization ethics
  • Healing environment

"To have met and, in many cases, exceeded, the standards set by the AACN is to be a leader in acute and critical care nursing, and we are extremely proud of that," says Sheryl Slonim, RNC, M.Ed., CNAA, Executive Vice President of Patient Care Services and Chief Nursing Officer at Holy Name Medical Center. "Beacon represents an extraordinary commitment to excellence and dedication to a level of patient and family care that is truly exceptional."

Holy Name's One North is a progressive care unit with 40 beds. Progressive care is part of the continuum of critical care, where patients receive more specialized, high-tech care and treatments, and more intensive monitoring than on acute care units. As of December 2009, there were only four progressive care units (PCUs) in the U.S. that had received the Beacon Award, with no winning PCUs in New Jersey.

The Medical Center's Intensive Care Unit (ICU) administers the highest level of specialized care, providing comprehensive around-the-clock intensive monitoring and treatment for patients who are severely ill and medically unstable. Holy Name's unit has 19 beds, a mix of medical and surgical.

"It's called 'Beacon' for a reason," notes Ms. Slonim. "The journey through that continuum, from critical to progressive to acute care, can be extremely stressful for patients and their families. These nurses, who make excellence on every level their mission, are like beacons of light that guide patients and families with professionalism and compassion. They, and the Beacon unit as a whole, are sources of inspiration for other hospitals and set the standards for what constitutes excellence."

According to the AACN, the largest specialty nursing organization in the world, Beacon Award units realize many benefits, including influence and recognition in the medical community and credibility among healthcare consumers. Beacon winners also tend to enjoy enhanced recruitment and retention, as they are generally acknowledged as workplaces where quality of care is tied directly to quality of staff and a positive environment.