May is home to two of the nation’s largest health care recognition weeks, National Nurses Week and National Hospital Week.

SCKMC celebrates National Nurses Week

Courtesy photo
FROM LEFT: Jamilee Metzinger receives a lifetime achievement award from senior administrator John Jones for more than 40 years of service at SCKMC during the annual National Hospital Week awards luncheon.

South Central Kansas Medical Center recently held events for both of these special occasions.

National Nurses Week has been celebrated since 1954, although it was not recognized officially until President Richard Nixon issued a proclamation in 1974. Nurses Week begins each year on May 6 and ends on May 12, Florence Nightingale’s birthday. SCKMC celebrated the week with games, prizes, meals and activities for all nursing staff.

This year’s National Hospital Week celebration was held from May 7 to May 13. National Hospital Week is considered to be the nation’s largest health care event, celebrating the efforts of the hospital team and the care they provide. SCKMC scheduled a full slate of activities for its staff in order to celebrate.

Events included virtual bingo, a build-your-own-sundae bar, donuts delivered to the various departments by administration personnel, a picnic lunch and the annual “years of service” luncheon.

SCKMC’s service luncheon is an invitation-only event held for individuals within the organization who are celebrating a milestone anniversary in 2017. The event is attended by honorees from all departments, as well as team leaders and hospital administrators. This year’s event was held May 10.

SCKMC’s chief executive officer, Virgil Watson, addressed those in attendance. “We can’t say ‘thank you’ enough to all of you and your fellow employees,” Watson said.

“We appreciate all of you and all that you do. I just can’t find the words to properly say ‘thank you’ for all that you do, and your dedication and loyalty that you give to our hospital.”

Honorees are presented with achievement pins by their department manager, commemorating the number of years they have been employed at the medical center.

The following members were recognized for their service:

  • Five years — Joyce Baker, environmental services; Shanea Chrisman, ER registration; Brandi Cyrus, nutritional services; Dr. Perry Lin, OB/GYN; Ashley Lynn, medical/surgical team leader; and Riley Stegman, laboratory;
  • 10 years — Tammy Eiselt, employee health; Angela Kelly, house supervisor; Holly Harper, and chief financial officer;
  • 15 years — Valerie Reed, business services;
  • 20 years — Cassie Crocker, laboratory, and Mike Metzinger, maintenance.

In addition, Jamilee Metzinger received special recognition for her dedication to patient care. She retired last month after spending 41 years providing nursing services at Arkansas City Memorial Hospital and SCKMC. John Jones, SCKMC’s chief operations officer, thanked Metzinger for her dedicated service.

“Forty years — how do you put that into some meaningful perspective?” Jones said.

“In nursing, you have to stay, competent, sharp and current, and to have done that through such a spectrum … Think about how much medicine has changed, and to maintain that impresses me the most. You define nursing — congratulations!”

The medical center will wrap up the Hospital Week activities by hosting a free community cookout from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 12 at South Central Kansas Clinic, located at 515 N. Summit St.

The cookout is in honor of Dr. Lin’s practice expansion. In addition to his established practice through the SCKMC Specialty Clinic, located on the hospital campus in Patterson Park Subdivision, he now is accepting new patients through South Central Kansas Clinic.

This information was provided by South Central Kansas Medical Center Marketing Director Clayton Pappan.