Three nurses receive DAISY Award for excellent care

Published 06/26/2020

In recognition of their outstanding patient care, three South County Health nurses received the DAISY Award on Friday, June 26, one of the highest honors in the profession.

Each DAISY Award recipient received a certificate, pin, and a sculpture called ‘The Healer’s Touch.’ As part of the DAISY tradition, freshly baked cinnamon rolls were delivered to each of the nurse’s units to be shared with their colleagues.

Meet the DAISY Award recipients

Brittney Averill, RN – Telemetry
“ … consistent, compassionate, quality care …”

Brittney Averill was nominated for her consistent, compassionate, quality care and paying attention to “the details” of her patients.

Her nomination read:
“When my husband arrived on the floor, Brittney was ready and greeted him with a smile and genuine kindness. She was extremely patient while taking my husband’s information. Never once did he feel like he was just “Room 218.” On the contrary, he felt Brittney was providing nursing care to him not just another patient.

Through her excellent listening and observation skills, Brittney realized my husband’s headaches may have been caused by the fact that he hadn’t been having caffeine for the past few days. She immediately asked him if he’d like a coffee and how he took it. She asked if he liked the blue or pink (sweetener) packets in his coffee.

Although she had other patients and was very busy, you would never know it. Brittney exuded a calmness each time she entered the room. All of these “details” demonstrate Brittney’s calling as a nurse. She cares for her patient as a person.”

Carolyn Baxter, RN – ICU
“This nurse was more than I ever expected …”

Carolyn Baxter, RN, was nominated for her compassion, professionalism, and knowledge.

Her nomination read:
“I have been a nurse for 15 years, so I can be a bit critical when it comes to the care of my family. This nurse was more than I ever expected.

My father has been admitted and is presently there. Carolyn has been his nurse most of the days he has been there. Carolyn is a professional; it is clear that she has a wonderful knowledge base, and I knew my dad would be in safe hands. But, what makes Carolyn shine was the compassion she showed my dad.

A man with severe end stage COPD with high anxiety and difficulty coping, Carolyn eased him through his panic moments and periods of extreme sob. She reassured him, held his hand and made him feel like she would make it all better. And many times, she did.

She advocated for my dad when she felt his needs were not being met. As a family member of a sick parent, not knowing what’s going on makes things so scary. Yet, that was never the case with Carolyn. Every time I visited, she would fill me in on everything--tests, plan, meds, etc. She called me, sometimes several times a day, to ensure that I was always kept in the loop.

Carolyn symbolizes everything the DAISY award stands for...”

Jennifer Varras, RN - Med/Surg
“I could tell Nurse Varras really cared about my care and more importantly, me as a person.”

Jennifer Varras was nominated for her compassion, communication, and caring.

Her nomination read:
“I’m writing this regarding Nurse Varras and the amazing and excellent care she provided for me on my recent admission to South County Hospital. I was in a lot of pain at the time of admission, and Nurse Varras made it a point to see that I received my medicine and that my pain was managed.

She was extremely compassionate, so helpful and always communicated to me what was going on with my care. I could tell Nurse Varras really cared about my care and more importantly, me as a person. Nurse Varras’ devotion to my care, treatment of me, professionalism and quality of care makes South County Hospital the best hospital I have ever been to and one in which I would return if I ever needed.

Nurse Varras is an asset to any hospital, and South County is lucky to have her. I know nurses are angels, but I personally saw Nurse Varras’ wings during my stay at South County Hospital. She deserves an award and recognition for all she is and does. Thank you, South County Hospital.”

About The DAISY Foundation
The DAISY Foundation was established in 1999 by the family of J. Patrick Barnes. His family was awestruck by the care and compassion his nurses provided and one of the goals they set in creating a Foundation was to recognize extraordinary nurses everywhere who make an enormous difference in the lives of so many people by the super-human work they do every day.

Cinnamon rolls were a favorite of Patrick’s during his illness. The Barnes Family asks that whenever and wherever nurses smell that wonderful cinnamon aroma, they stop for a moment and think about how special they are.

To nominate a nurse for the DAISY Award, patients, visitors, nurses, physicians, or colleagues may complete and submit the form on our website.

If the nurse you nominate is selected as the recipient, you will be contacted to share in the celebration.

Questions? Call 401-788-1622 or email