By Meghan McCaffrey CONTRIBUTING WRITER
---- — Barbara Petersen, R.N., an employee of Bassett for 21 years who currently works in the Intensive Care Unit at Bassett Medical Center, is the 2013 recipient of the Henry Allen Moe Prize in honor of Pearl F. Day.
Petersen began working at Bassett in 1986 as a float secretary. After a few years she found, “It wasn’t challenging enough anymore,” Petersen said. “It made it easy to think about going back to school to be a nurse.”
Petersen finished her degree in 1995 at the Utica College of Syracuse University. As a senior in college she became an LPN and worked nights at Bassett until she became a registered nurse.
At that time Bassett was still a small hospital, Petersen said.
“Everybody knew everybody,” Petersen continued. “It made Bassett very charming. Even though it’s gotten bigger, it still has some of that charm.”
She continued working at Bassett for a year on the medicine floor and then became a traveling nurse. She worked in many states from Maine to Florida between 1996 and 2002.
“I received on the job training wherever I went,” Petersen said. “Having that varied experience has helped a lot in my practice in upstate New York.”
Petersen returned to Bassett to be near her mother, who had recently retired. Since 2002, she has worked primarily in the ICU.
Petersen said she enjoys the ICU because she gets to do a little of everything.
“It’s an open unit so we do everything including neurology, medical and trauma,” she said. “I’m ready whenever there’s a crisis.”
Petersen said winning the Henry Allen Moe Prize is a “complete honor.”
“My peers nominated me and that means more to me than anything,” Petersen said.
“This award is an honor for me; it’s also humbling,” Petersen said in a media release. “I am thankful for everyone’s support and for all of the colleagues that I’m able to work with every day who offer the same amount of excellence in their care who are equally as deserving.”
“Barbara is a shining example of what nursing should look like to our patients and their families,” said Donna Anderson, R.N., director of Bassett Medical Center’s intensive care unit, special care unit, emergency services and cardiovascular imaging in a press release. “She was also recently awarded the Renee Slade Henson ICU Award of Nursing Excellence.”
“It’s an overwhelming year for me,” Petersen said. “I feel thankful and very fortunate.”
The Henry Allen Moe Prize honors Pearl F. Day, a nurse at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Brooklyn during World War I, said Karen Huxtable-Hooker public and media relations director in a press release. Day cared for Dr. Henry Allen Moe, former chair of the Bassett Board of Trustees, while he was a patient at the hospital after the war, Huxtable-Hooker said. This award has been given for 36 years.