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Bakersfield Heart Hospital hosts awards to recognize, honor nurses

The Bakersfield Heart Hospital held an awards ceremony Tuesday to honor and recognize nurses for their continuous contributions amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

ICU nurse Teresa Ranfan won the Daisy Award — which stands for Diseases Attacking the Immune System — out of the nine other nominees. She has worked at Bakersfield Heart Hospital for two years, and encounters some of the sickest patients in the hospital, she said.

“I am just happy to … help other patients recover from illnesses,” she said. “I try to be uplifting.”

The Daisy Awards is a nationwide program created after the death of Jake Patrick Barnes, who died from complications of an immune system disease. The Barnes family sought to pay tribute to the nurses helping patients and their families through their difficult circumstances.

Chief Nurse Executive Carol Stiltner said the award helps to boost morale throughout the hospital during the ongoing pandemic. Caring for COVID-19 patients every single day takes a physical, mental and spiritual toll on each staff member. Younger and younger patients arrive each day, she added.

These nurses have cared for and provided compassion when families cannot visit their loved ones during this time, Stiltner said.

“It’s been a really tough two years,” the chief nurse executive said. “We are just so proud of each and every one of them.”

The other nominees included: Andrew Domingo, Angel Moreno-Avila, Brooke Mowinski, Colleen Trottier, Edward Tameny, Jerome Aquino, Michelle Hervery and Ronald Cusi. 

Coronavirus Cases widget

  • Positive Cases Among Kern Residents: 158,270

  • Deaths: 1,828

  • Recovered and Presumed Recovered Residents: 150,950 

  • Percentage of all cases that are unvaccinated: 92.04

  • Percentage of all hospitalizations that are unvaccinated: 92.62 Updated: 12/3/2021. Source: Kern County Public Health Services Department