Intermountain Healthcare Honors 64 Nurses With 2018 Nursing Excellence Awards

Three Intermountain Healthcare nurses receive unique awards for providing compassionate, clinically excellent care.
SALT LAKE CITY - May 30, 2018 - PRLog -- Intermountain has honored of its 64 nurses with 2018 Nursing Excellence Awards. Each year, the award winners are nominated and selected by their nurse colleagues and leaders for providing compassionate, clinically excellent care that makes a difference in the lives of their patients, families, and co-workers.

"Nursing is one of the most valued and trusted professions," said Kim Henrichsen, RN, MS, Intermountain's senior vice president of clinical operations and chief nursing executive. "I'm honored to be a nurse, and to represent more than 10,000 amazing nurses at Intermountain. I'm so grateful for your compassion, skills, and dedicated service. You're making a remarkable difference in the lives of patients, families, and the community."

Marc Harrison, MD, Intermountain's CEO, added, "You're the heart and soul of what Intermountain delivers clinically. You are everywhere. You're in touch with the patients physically and emotionally more than any other segment of our clinical population. You have varied careers, but one thing is in common — you have unbelievable impact. Thank you for functioning across One Intermountain, thanks for leading change, and thanks for looking for opportunities to serve our patients better."

Three nurses received unique awards:

Nursing Inspiration Award: Macky Meephakdee, RN, Intermountain Medical Center OR. Macky was born and raised by his grandparents in a small farm town in Thailand. He found his passion for nursing while caring for his grandparents. Macky was the first in his family to get an education past the fifth grade, working odd jobs and selling snacks to pursue his education. His high grades earned him a scholarship to Khon Kaen University, where he earned a bachelor's degree in nursing and began practicing in an operating room in Thailand. In 2014, he came to Utah, studied English as a second language, and by 2016, completed all of the regulatory requirements and passed all national and local language and clinical exams to earn a comparable BSN degree and be licensed to practice nursing in the United States.

Nursing Innovation Award: Carolyn Reynolds, RN, MSN, APRN, Intermountain Central Office. Carolyn is the director of Intermountain's Pediatric Clinical Program, and she's held progressive roles in pediatrics since 1989. In partnership with Stanford, she started Intermountain's GRAD program to support young adults with chronic disease. The program offers resources and tools to help prepare teens to successfully manage their own health and make a successful transition to adult care.

Nursing Influence Award: Michelle Van De Graaf, RN, Intermountain Medical Center Acute Cardiovascular Unit. When Michelle was serving in the Peace Corps in the Republic of Kiribati, she noticed that family members provided much of the care for their loved ones as part of their culture. So, eight years ago, with the support of her team at Intermountain Medical Center, she started the Partners in Healing program, which helps engage family members in their loved one's care and enhances their transition from the hospital to home. The response to the program has been extremely positive from patients, family members, and caregivers. Over 90 percent of patients involved in the program gave it a rating of 4 or 5 on a 5-point scale for helping them be ready for discharge and comfortable in caring for the patient at home — and patients who've participated in the program at Intermountain Medical Center have experienced a 65 percent reduction in readmission rates. Today, Partners in Healing is being implemented across Intermountain.

Intermountain Healthcare is a Utah-based not-for-profit system of 22 hospitals, 170 clinics, a Medical Group with about 2,300 employed physicians and advanced practice clinicians, a health plans group called SelectHealth, and other medical services. Intermountain is widely recognized as a leader in transforming healthcare through high quality and sustainable costs. For more information about Intermountain, visit

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