Theresa Petrone, RN, NP 14
Theresa Petrone, RN, started as an RN volunteer at Smilow and within five months she became a full-time Oncology Nurse on Smilow 14-NP. During her nearly four years on the floor, she has achieved a great deal in her quest to provide the best patient care possible. She earned her OCN Oncology certification, she was awarded the Daisy Award for Extraordinary Nurses, and for the last year she has volunteered to be a Quality and Safety intern for the new Quality internship program. In addition, she also sits on the hospital-wide Council for Quality and Safety.
The Daisy Award is a national award to honor nurses in memory of J. Patrick Barnes. The award was created to let nurses know how deserving they are of society's profound respect for the education, training, brainpower, and skill they put into their work. Theresa commented, "Taking care of my patients is the best part of my job, and I love doing it. My goal is to provide these women with the best care and experience possible. Some patients are receiving chemotherapy while others are recovering from major surgeries. I also want to be sure they have access to all the wonderful support services Smilow has to offer, such as Reiki, yoga, social workers, translators, and specialized nutritionists."
Theresa wanted to be a Quality and Safety Intern to further extend her ability to impact patient care and advocate for patients by helping to build good practices into the system. "Improving the systems under which we provide care is the best way to positively impact the most patients," said Theresa. In this role she tries to expand nurses' knowledge about the safety of patients and providing quality, attentive care. The Council for Quality and Safety is a multidisciplinary, hospital-wide group that meets with a focus on quality indicators and how they can be improved. The Council identifies issues and discusses solutions to resolve them. Their current focus is on patient identification and pain and improving pain scores.
Supporting families is another important part of what Theresa does. An all-women's floor can be intimidating to male family members who feel out of place while they also deal with the deep emotional burden of facing a loved-one's illness. Theresa makes sure to make family members feel supported so that they can be positive influences while the patient heals. Tracy Carafeno, RN, MS, Patient Service Manager for Women's Services and Surgical Oncology, commented, "Theresa comes to work every day with a smile and a positive attitude. She is dedicated, compassionate and always puts her patients and families first. She has made a difference in the lives of so many women. NP 14 is very proud and honored to have Theresa as a team member."