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North Shore Hospital wins illustrious nursing award

North Shore University Hospital became the second hospital in the state to win the nursing profession’s highest honor Monday just a year after Long Island Jewish Hospital in Queens captured the prestigious national award.

The hospital and its nurses were recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, which awarded them the Magnet Recognition for Excellence in Nursing Service.

North Shore joined 42 other health-care facilities across the country given the citation.

“We are thrilled,” said Margarita Baggett, chief nurse executive at the Manhasset hospital. “The award validates everything we do here.”

She said the nurses on the hospital’s staff are talented professionals who “go the extra mile” to provide the best patient care possible. Baggett said her staff is looking forward to sharing information with other hospitals throughout the state.

“Today I can proclaim, we as nurses share a common desire and vision,” Baggett said. “And dreams can come true.”

The nursing profession’s top honor recognizes nurses for quality patient care and exemplary nursing leadership. The American Nurses Credentialing Center, based in Washington, D.C., is the leading U.S. nursing credentialing organization and a subsidiary of the American Nurses Association.

U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) joined other top North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System officials and more than 300 of the hospital’s staff to celebrate and present the Magnet award to the health facility’s 1,500 nurses.

“Your profession is one to be admired,” said Schumer. “After 9/11 we honored the firefighters and for the same reasons we honored them, we should honor you — team work, stamina, running toward the problem, putting your heart into it and saving lives.”

He said there was no doubt in his mind that nurses have one of the hardest jobs, which get even tougher as the technology improves everyday. People criticize the country’s health system, Schumer said, but “they fail to recognize what a success it has been.”

North Shore University Hospital is a 731-bed tertiary care facility that is part of the North Shore-LIJ Health System. It is the nation’s third-largest, nonprofit, secular health system and consists of 18 hospitals in Queens, Long Island and Staten Island.

According to the ANCC, the magnet program is a peer-reviewed award which honors hospitals and nurses who show excellence in management philosophy, adherence to the standards for improving nursing care, leadership and attention to the cultural and ethnic needs of patients.

North Shore Hospital began the review process in July 1999 and submitted 14 volumes of information about its staff and patient care. A group of professional nurses also evaluated the hospital’s nursing service, patient care and clinical care based on American Nursing Association standards.

“It’s no coincidence that the only two hospitals to receive the Magnet Award in New York state have extremely low vacancies,” said Michael Dowling, president and chief executive officer of the North Shore-LIJ Health System. “We’ve created a quality work environment committed to excellence in patient and family care.

Reach reporter Adam Kramer by e-mail at Timesledgr@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 157.

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