Ms. Kelly McCullough has been our ADPCS for five years and in that time, has made positive changes that will affect our service for many years.
First and most importantly, she is a nurses' nurse. She has an incredible wealth of bedside experience and because of this, can articulate the needs, concerns, and value of bedside nurses to senior leadership. She has given the nurses who make a direct difference in the lives of our veteran patients a voice. That alone is outstanding.
Secondly, Ms. McCullough is known as a mentor to many. She not only mentors administrative staff but first-line staff as well. For administrative staff, she took the time to identify our strengths and weaknesses and sought committees and details to provide the experience needed to turn our weaknesses into strengths. She pushed many of us to step outside of our comfort zone and use our strengths to grow staff who needed our mentoring. This gave us confidence and was also a great way to network with staff we didn't ordinarily work beside.
When Ms. McCullough first came to Lexington, I scheduled a meeting with her and one of my employees who had issues working with her colleagues. I expected the meeting to be difficult, but it turned out to be the exact opposite. As soon as we sat down, Ms. McCullough began talking to the employee about her goals and had her list the ways we could assist her to meet those goals. Honestly, I had asked this same question of the employee before but not in the way Ms. McCullough asked. After the meeting, the employee told me she was amazed to have the ADPCS take the time to work through a personal development plan with her. Did it make a difference? It honestly did.
Finally, she has operationalized the idea of accountability for nurses. Setting standards and competencies based on evidence-based practice, she ensures that staff are educated, mentored, and held to those standards. She understands that nursing is a profession and as such, each of us must be responsible and accountable for our care.