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Excela Health Nurses Honored as Cameos of Caring®

Excela Health Nurses Honored as Cameos of Caring®

GREENSBURG, PA, November 14, 2022 … Excela Health celebrates three nurses who have been recognized as 2022 Cameos of Caring® recipients. Created by the University of Pittsburgh in 1999, this honor celebrates exceptional caregivers across several disciplines. Excela Health through its member hospitals has been a program participant for more than a dozen years.

Samantha Nolan, BSN, RN, Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital Intensive Care Unit, represented the acute care setting. Lydia King, MSN, RN, PHRN, Clinical Nurse Coordinator, Emergency Department, Excela Health Frick Hospital, was selected from the ambulatory care setting. Wendy Reynolds, MSN, RNC-OB, C-EFM, NE-BC, Clinical Director of the Family Additions Maternity Center at Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital was selected by the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing to receive recognition for Advanced Practice- Manager Focus

The honorees were feted November 12 during the awards ceremony at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh.

Samantha Nolan, BSN, RN
Intensive Care Unit, Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital

Samantha Nolan is a critical care nurse at Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital who represents front-line nurse leaders at their finest. She serves as that important reminder that patient care is about the patient first, and that care should not be sacrificed, regardless of the pace or the demands placed on modern healthcare systems – every moment, every shift she works. Her courtesy and respect are evident as her patients and their rooms are immaculate. That attention to basic care needs is a priority for this Unit Based Practice Council chair as she creates action plans that can be replicated across the unit

Relatively new to the discipline of nursing, Nolan assisted in caring for her grandmother, where she witnessed firsthand how skillful yet compassionate caregiving by the home health team impacted the entire family. That helped solidify her career focus. A graduate of Citizens School of Nursing, she earned her BSN at the Pennsylvania State University New Kensington campus.

While completing her degree, she worked as a technical partner in the Westmoreland ICU, where she appreciated the acuity of each patient and close involvement required by the care team. She is preparing for the critical care nurse certification examination as well as broader family life, having just welcomed her second child, which adds new responsibilities for this can-do nurse.

That spirit was particularly evident during the height of the pandemic and the lessons learned from Nolan during that time will be long-lasting. She is a powerful model of doing the right things in the right way for the benefit of the individual and the team.

Lydia King, MSN, RN, PHRN
Clinical Nurse Coordinator, Emergency Department
Excela Health Frick Hospital

Leaders lead would aptly describe Lydia King’s influence within the Emergency Department at Excela Health Frick Hospital. Her knowledge and experience coupled with her respectful manner are natural motivators for others to follow her example. Clear-headed and calm, King demonstrates that there is no room for unchecked emotions when caring for life’s emergencies.

With many family members serving as nursing role models, King began her personal journey at Westmoreland County Community College. While pursuing her nursing degree, she worked as a unit clerk at Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital before transferring to Frick Hospital. She continued her schooling in the RN to BSN program at then California University of Pennsylvania where she also completed her master’s.
King is a member of the Emergency Nurses Association, and has received her pre-hospital RN certificate to help in supporting emergency nurses across the region. She is also trained as a sexual assault nurse examiner.

Always attentive to the needs of others, she can be found conducting roadside cleanup, fund-raising on behalf of the local volunteer fire department or spearheading community outreach on behalf of her coworkers, identifying individuals and families who would benefit from a helping hand at the holidays.

When others might crumble under the stress of the day, King remains that steady influence that helps maintain order in a chaotic scene. Staff and patients like benefit from her unflappable demeanor. An encourager by nature, she never forgets a special occasion, and she won’t rest until everyone on the team earns certification in their specialty, or advances within their practice.

Advanced Practice Award - Manager Focus

Wendy Reynolds, MSN, RNC-OB, C-EFM, NE-BC
Clinical Director, Family Additions Maternity Center
Excela Health

For 37 years, Wendy Reynolds has been an obstetrics nurse, first at West Penn Hospital and now as a certified nurse executive at Excela Health. With each passing year, she continues to improve care surrounding an ages-old process through professional advancement and best practice adoption. Clinical director of the Family Additions Maternity Center at Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital, Reynolds exemplifies leadership. Whether seeking advanced certifications, inspiring nurse leaders at regional, state and national levels or guiding her team to implement the latest in evidence-based research, she leads with the same care for staff that she exhibits toward families and newborns.

Facilitator of Excela’s Professional Advancement Committee. Reynolds holds a BSN and MSN from Carlow University, but she never stops learning. A member of the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetrics, and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN), she teaches the organization’s intermediate fetal monitoring class to her staff as well as instructs CPR and neonatal resuscitation.

Overseeing childbirth educators, Reynolds advocated for virtual learning modules. Her unit is recognized as a Safe Sleep Leader nationally for attention to swaddling as a best practice to reduce infant mortality and part of the Pennsylvania Department of Health Keystone 10 honor roll for breastfeeding advocacy. Reynolds championed the establishment of a depot for the Mid-Atlantic Mothers’ Milk Bank within Excela to support medically vulnerable infants and young children.

She has solicited grant funding to aid newborns with neonatal abstinence syndrome and been recognized by March of Dimes. Because of her adherence to the highest levels of data-driven performance, Excela Westmoreland Hospital is recognized by both US News and Newsweek among the nation’s Best Maternity Hospitals.

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