Renee Evans, RN, a clinical nurse at Beaumont Hospital, Troy, received the Michigan Health & Hospital Association Keystone Center Speak-up! Award for preventing a potential adverse event to her patient.
Evans accepted the award during a virtual presentation Oct. 22. The quarterly recognition honors hospital and health system professionals who demonstrate their commitment to keeping patients safe by speaking up to prevent potential harm to patients or staff members.
Evans was scheduled to administer a steroid cream for a patient and noticed the label on the medication did not list the application area. The medication administration record indicated that the medication was prescribed for the eye; however, Evans knew that steroid creams are not typically prescribed for eyes. Upon further review of the tube, she noted a warning label stating that the steroid cream was not intended for ophthalmic use. She spoke to the patient, who informed her that they apply the medication to their elbow.
The nominee notified the pharmacy of this error immediately, preventing potential harm by using her attention to detail and swift action to further investigate the situation.
“I’m honored to receive this award, which represents nurses throughout our hospital who go to great lengths to care for our patients,” said Evans. “All I did was do the right thing, and I hope this reminds other nurses to be confident and speak up when something doesn’t appear right.”
The Speak-up! Award was created in 2016 and has honored nearly 20 employees of Michigan hospitals to date. The award is presented quarterly, with one quarterly awardee recognized as an annual Speak-up! Award recipient.
“Healthcare is a complex business, so near-misses and potentially unsafe conditions can develop at any time,” said Dr. Sam Flanders, chief quality and safety officer, Beaumont Health. “It’s only through alertness, caring and willingness to speak up, which Renee demonstrated, that we can locate the next problem before it reaches a patient. Finding and fixing problems at this early stage is the foundation of a strong Safety Culture at Beaumont Health.”
Dr. James Lynch, president, Beaumont Hospital, Troy, said, “The delivery of patient care depends on a team of clinicians working together in the best interests of the patient. Renee demonstrates what we want all of our staff to do, which is if you suspect something is amiss, make your voice heard.”
Additional award finalists for the third quarter of 2020 include:
- Melissa Moore, McLaren Flint
- Macey Ramey, McLaren Greater Lansing
- Megan McGrath, RN, Beaumont Hospital, Trenton
“A caregiver’s commitment to the safety of their patients never stops,” said MHA CEO Brian Peters. “We are thankful that Renee spoke up and did the right thing to ensure her patient received the care she needed and deserves.”