Nancy Lee Vadnais

Nancy Lee Vadnais

Nancy Lee Vadnais, RN

Cardiovascular Critical Care Unit
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center
Lebanon, New Hampshire
United States

“Nancy is the reason I work here,” says colleague Julie Gudisman, RN, of December’s DAISY Award Winner, Nancy Lee Vadnais, RN, Staff Nurse in Cardiovascular Critical Care (CVCC).
Vadnais interest in nursing began when she was a teenager and worked as a candy striper at St. Luke’s Convalescent Hospital in Greenwich, CT. “I saw nursing as a way to help make troubled lives a little better,” she says.
Working in critical care affords Vadnais the opportunity to balance high-tech, fast-paced medicine with an intense level of emotional support for her patients and their families. In CVCC it’s apparent that the staff recognizes the patient as part of a family unit. “We respect and value this relationship,” notes Vadnais.
Gudisman knows first-hand how Vadnais values that relationship. Twelve years ago, within a three-month period, first her father then her mother were patients in the unit. Both times Vadnais was their nurse. “To see her face, I felt like - this is someone, who after this short amount of time I really cared about - and I felt like she really cared about us and our whole family,” Gudisman says. Shortly after her mother was released, Gudisman applied for a job at DHMC.
Vadnais was nominated for the DAISY Award by Sadie Smith, RN. In her nomination letter, Smith describes how Vadnais goes “above and beyond” for her patient and their family members. She notes that “Nancy cares deeply for her co-workers” and it’s obvious that her co-workers feel the same towards her.
Reinette Hutchins, RN, of the Intermediate Cardiac Care Unit (ICCU), adds, “She is involved in every aspect of the patient and family care. She provides very personal attention to their specific needs. They very quickly trust her and let her provide them what they need, even at times when they wouldn’t let others do that.”
For Vadnais, “The DAISY Award touches my heart. I am fortunate to work in an environment that values compassion as well as expertise,” she says. Vadnais appreciates that it truly is a team effort that enables her to provide the level of care that she is able to in the CCVC. “There is so much talent here. I do believe that I work in a whole field of daisies!”

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