PICU NP’s Nominated for a DAISY Award

Top, left to right: Jodi Bloxham, Kristen Brown, Tricia Michna, Haley Stoll
Bottom, left to right: Liz Espinoza, Brittany Pechous, April Schmitz, Cassie Wagner, and Heather Elmore

Congratulations to the 9 PICU NP’s who have been nominated as a group for a DAISY Award. From the nomination below:

“The PICU Advanced Practice Nurse Practitioner Group started several years ago with two nurse practitioners. Today the team has grown to a 9-member team of primary and acute care certified nurse practitioners with the majority of members practicing at the doctoral level (five of eight members). Almost all members are certified as not only acute care nurse practitioners, but also primary care nurse practitioners (the only requirement is acute care certification). The eight members together have over 130 years of nursing experience with three members that have been practicing in acute care pediatrics for over twenty years. All members are actively involved in research, (several are published authors) unit groups to improve patient care, and unit projects. For example, one team member recently completed a DNP project for PICC lines, published her work, and presented her work at a national conference. Another team member implemented an evidenced based tool in the PICU to assess pediatric patients for delirium. Several members participate in the PICU quality group, which seeks to improve patient care and quality improvement projects for PICU. Several members provide lectures to nurses, fellows, and residents on a variety of critical care topics to promote and improve knowledge. PJCU NPs also serve as preceptors for nurse practitioner students at The University of Iowa and other NP programs to further nursing education. These are just a few examples to demonstrate the commitment the NP group has to education, evidenced based practice, and improving the PICU environment.

The PICU NP team has adapted to change over the years and currently manages the cardiac intensive care unit of the PICU. The team provides holistic. comprehensive care to all the patients they serve. The NP team knowledge of critically ill children is extensive. All members are intelligent, innovative, detail oriented, and astute. The team recognizes acute changes in patients and appropriately alerts staff physicians. The NPs are a resource to new faculty/staff, fellows, nursing staff, and residents on a daily basis. Available 24/7 the NP team is always willing to help team members with questions or concerns. The nurse practitioners provide continuity of care in an ever-changing environment. Physician staff members change on a weekly basis and the nurse practitioners are present to provide an accurate history and physical for all patients.

Each member of the team is skilled in vascular access. NP team members are often utilized for central line access, arterial line access, and PICC line placement. The NP team teaches the fellows how to use ultrasound guidance and assists them with line placement. In addition, the NP team is sought out for difficult blood draws and peripheral IV access when nursing requires help.

Large!)’ regarded as experts in vascular access, the NPs are frequently asked to obtain access for critically ill children on presentation to the PICU. These children are often very ill and timely central access plays a key role in the ability to further manage these patients.

The NP group in the PICU is easily one of the hardest working groups at the University of Iowa. They care for the sickest children in Iowa everyday with smiles on their faces. Without question, when a child needs help the nurse practitioners are always available. You will find them staying late beyond their shift and corning in early when needed. If my child were acutely ill, I would want to see one of the PICU NPs at their bedside. The NP group cares for their patients, but their entire family as well. The PICU would be a very different place without the nurse practitioners. As this group has grown they have improved immensely in their knowledge and abilities. This team deserves to be recognized for their outstanding service and dedication to their patients.”

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