Learn more about the Daisy Foundation
Some 200 UW Medicine health system nurses, staff, members of the executive leadership teams and local and national business representatives honored award-winning nurses on Friday, February 11, at an event held in the UW Tower.
The gathering marked the 10-year anniversary of the DAISY (Diseases Attacking the Immune System) award for extraordinary nurses, originally launched at UW Medical Center (UWMC) in February 2001.
Nearly 250 nurses from the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance and UW Medicine — including Harborview Medical Center, Northwest Hospital & Medical Center and UWMC — have received the DAISY Foundation award since its inception. DAISY award recipients are nominated by nurse administrators, peers, physicians, patients and families.
The foundation was formed in January 2000 by the family of J. Patrick Barnes, who died at age 33 from complications related to idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, an autoimmune disease in which the body creates antibodies that destroy its own platelets (blood cells responsible for clotting of blood).
Twice a survivor of Hodgkin’s Disease, Patrick received care at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance from nurses across the health system, including UW Medical Center and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Patrick’s family wanted to create a program or project in his memory, and they opted to honor nurses involved in his care.
Why create a nursing award? Patrick’s stepmother, Bonnie, said that every nurse who cared for her son had excellent clinical skills, and an ability to deal with complex technology and life-threatening situations that sometimes happened in the middle of the night.
“That impressed us,” she said. “But what blew us away was that the nurses had the most amazing compassion. They demonstrated kindness, sensitivity and amazing communication skills, not only with Pat but with our family. It’s in keeping with who Pat was for us to go around the country and say ‘thank you’ to as many nurses as possible.”
Twelve nurses who cared for Patrick were honored at the event, and received special recognition from Patrick’s family members, including his wife, Tena Barnes Carraher, his daughter Riley, his stepmother, Bonnie, and his dad, Mark Barnes.
“Its so meaningful to me to say, ‘thank you for all that you do all of the time,” said Mark.
Individual nurses recognized at the event include Mary Stroeing (Harborview), Angie Thompson (Northwest) and Annie Tu (UWMC).
Today, there are more than 750 health care organizations in the United States and around the world honoring nurses with the DAISY award.
Photos on this page by Darla Fagan, nurse recruitment manager.