2007-04-27 / Community

PHC Honors 'Nurses Of Distinction'

At left: Margaret Galligan, CCRN, is the Assistant Head Nurse of the Coronary Care Unit. Nurse Galligan has been elected by her peers to be this year's Nurse of Distinction, representing Peninsula Hospital Center. At right: Marilou P. Espiritu, RN, is the Nurse Care Manager of 3 Bay in Peninsula Hospital Center for Extended Care and Rehabilitation. Nurse Espiritu has been elected by her peers as this year's recipient of the Nurse of Distinction Award from PCECR.
At left: Margaret Galligan, CCRN, is the Assistant Head Nurse of the Coronary Care Unit. Nurse Galligan has been elected by her peers to be this year's Nurse of Distinction, representing Peninsula Hospital Center. At right: Marilou P. Espiritu, RN, is the Nurse Care Manager of 3 Bay in Peninsula Hospital Center for Extended Care and Rehabilitation. Nurse Espiritu has been elected by her peers as this year's recipient of the Nurse of Distinction Award from PCECR. Peninsula Hospital Center will be holding its Annual Spring Bruncheon on Wednesday, May 9, 2007 at Russo's on the Bay in Howard Beach, honoring two "Nurses of Distinction," Margaret Galligan, CCRN, Assistant Head Nurse of the Coronary Care United at Peninsula Hospital Center (PHC) and Marilou Espiritu, RN, the Nurse Care Manager of 3 Bay in the Peninsula Hospital Center for Extended Care and Rehabilitation (PCECR).

"Being selected the 'Nurse of Distinction' is a tremendous honor," said Robin Blackwell, RN, Vice President of Nursing and Chief Nurse Executive at Peninsula Hospital Center. "Each year we honor outstanding nursing professionals who have been exemplary in the performance of their professional duties, exhibit compassion and who serve as an example of the Hospital Center's mission to provide the highest quality of health care. Our nurses work very hard and at this special event we are pleased to take this special opportunity say 'thank you' not only to our Nurses of Distinction, but to all the nurses in the hospital and extended care facility. They truly make a difference and deserve the recognition."

The Nurse of Distinction Award is given to an extraordinary professional who clearly exhibits the three "C's," including Competence - which is judged by on the job performance and experience; Commitment - which is measured in dedication to patients, peers and self and the profession of nursing; and Connection - which is shown in the effective communication of the excellence of nursing to others.

Margaret Galligan, CCRN, has been a member of the PHC staff since 1977. She came to Peninsula Hospital Center straight out of nursing school and has remained at the Hospital Center throughout her career. According to her peers who nominated her for this distinction, Galligan is extraordinary in many ways. She is completely committed to her profession, peers and, above all, to her patients. Calm in emergency situations, Galligan is described as a leader who provides great support to all of her co-workers. She is also a member of the rapid response team and shares her three decades of experience with the medical/surgical nurses. Galligan is credited with rescuing all of her patients from a smoke-filled environment in the CCU in 2005. Although she too was overwhelmed with smoke, she put her patients' lives first and delivered them to safety. To sum up the feelings of her fellow nurses, she sets the standard of nursing.

After learning that she had been chosen as this year's Nurse of Distinction for the Hospital Center, Galligan was surprised, but mostly honored that her co-workers had chosen her for this tribute. Her co-workers kept the nominations all hush-hush, knowing that Galligan, whom they have worked with for nearly ten years, does not particularly enjoy the limelight or being singled out from among her peers. One of the more outstanding notes of praise paid to Galligan is reflected in the words of her friend and co-worker, Geraldine Hoey, RN, who said, "Margaret always communicates the excellence of nurses to others…she is competent, committed and puts her patients first."

She is a graduate of CCNY School of Nursing where she earned her Bachelor of Science and her Registered Nursing degrees simultaneously upon completion of four years of undergraduate study. She was born in the old Rockaway Beach Hospital and lives in Broad Channel in the same house where she was brought up. In her spare time, Galligan enjoys arts and crafts projects and knitting, and, most of all, spending time with family and friends. In fact, the reason that she has chosen her nursing position at Peninsula Hospital Center as her life's work is because it allows her to live and work in her own community and work alongside her fellow nurses with whom she has shared the day shift in CCU for the past decade.

Marilou P. Espiritu, RN is the Nurse Care Manager of 3 Bay in the Peninsula Center for Extended Care and Rehabilitation where she originally started out in 1986 as a licensed practical nurse. The nurses who work alongside Espiritu every day sing her praises as an excellent clinician and a hands-on supervisor who believes in team work. Those who nominated her for this tribute call her an excellent nurse who is willing to go out of her way for others at anytime. Her co-workers also commend her for her kind heart and gentle, caring personality.

According to Sharon Brown, RN, Director of Nursing at the Extended Care Facility, Espiritu is a "hands on" nurse who truly demonstrates the designation of Nurse of Distinction. "She has worked here for more than 20 years and has proven her dedication and loyalty to the facility time and again," Brown said. "Marilou is very dependable, flexible and works well with her peers and genuinely deserves this mark of distinction."

Above and beyond all of the accolades about Espiritu presented during the nomination process, those that ring loudest are that she "exemplifies professionalism" and is "exceedingly dedicated" to her unit. To quote Denise Lobody, the Director of Infection Control/Staff Education at the extended care facility, she is…"always eager to learn new things and always willing to share her vast expertise with all the rest of the staff." Espiritu is described by all who come in contact with her as a committed, prepared, enthusiastic nurse who provides excellent care to her patients and offers enormous support to all of her co-workers.

She attended high school and graduate nursing school in Manila, Philippines. Her first professional nursing assignment was at the Ft. Bonifacio Army Hospital in Manila where she worked in obstetrics and gynecology, the emergency department and in the medical/surgery unit. She is a single mother of two daughters, ages 21 and 16, who keep her quite busy. In her rare spare hours, not spent managing her household or working full time at PCECR, she walks for exercise and enjoys shopping and is an avid moviegoer.

Many prizes have been generously donated for the Spring Luncheon Raffle, including a Deluxe Air Conditioner, courtesy of Caucig Utilities; an original Watercolor Artwork by Rockaway Artist Helen Georges, a 20" Color TV, courtesy of McKesson Empowering Health Care; and a Summer Fun Bonanza Basket, courtesy of Kings Pharmacy on Beach 116 Street.

For further information regarding ticket or raffle sales, please contact the Department of External Affairs and Development at 718-734-2506.

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