Little Company of Mary Hospital ICU Nurse Receives DAISY Award for Excellence

Congratulations to Penny Winnick, RN, ICU, who recently received the DAISY Award at Little Company of Mary Hospital.

What Is The DAISY Award? – The DAISY Award is an international program that rewards and celebrates the extraordinary clinical skill and compassionate care given by nurses every day. Little Company of Mary Hospital is proud to be a DAISY Award Partner, recognizing one of our nurses with this special honor every month. These nurses consistently demonstrate excellence through their clinical expertise and especially their extraordinary compassionate care. They are recognized as outstanding role models in our nursing community.

A family nominated Penny and listed the below reason why she is so very deserving of the Daisy Award:

“My father-in-law was admitted to Little Company of Mary Hospital where he cycled between the ICU and floor beds. After the first problem had been taken care of – a bleeding ulcer within his abdomen – thoughts of recovery were reassuring. A few days later, he was brought back up to the ICU because of complaints of new abdominal pain.

We found a savior in Penny. She assessed my father-in-law and thoroughly listened to his complaints of pain and my worries. Immediately after the assessment, Penny discovered that he had a fever, his blood pressure was dropping and his disorientation warranted immediate action. Penny started him on an IV drip to increase his blood pressure and heart rate and called his doctors for an order of a CAT scan of his stomach and head. With his medical history of stage 4 renal failure, brittle diabetes, and congestive heart failure, this infection of the gallbladder which was found could have killed him. The only person to have truly heard his complaints as well as mine realized right away that something was out of the ordinary. Without Penny’s initiative, I fear the infection would have gone unnoticed, instead constantly being attributed to other ailments. Instead of disguising the problem with injections of morphine, Penny and a partner truly did a phenomenal job in nursing and caring for my father-in law. She laid out a plan involving interventional radiology, infectious disease, and surgery.

Without the work and miracle of Penny and the follow-up from two other nurses, his health would not have improved. Without Penny, my children wouldn’t have had an opportunity to see their grandfather healthy and vibrant again – And for this, we will be forever grateful.”


The DAISY Foundation was established in 1999 by the family of J. Patrick Barnes who died of complications of the auto-immune disease Idiopathic Thrombocytopenia Purpura (ITP) at the age of 33. During Pat’s eight-week hospitalization, his family was awestruck by the care and compassion his nurses provided not only to Pat but to everyone in his family. So one of the goals they set in creating a Foundation in Pat’s memory 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.

Penny was recognized by her department and received: a beautiful certificate, a DAISY Award pin and a hand-carved stone sculpture entitled A Healer’s Touch. These serpentine stone sculptures are hand-carved for us by artists of the Shona Tribe in Zimbabwe. The sculptures are especially meaningful because of the profound respect the Shona people pay their traditional healers. Shona healers are affectionately regarded as treasures by those they care for and the well-being and safety of the healer is of community-wide importance. This describes exactly how we and our Hospital Partners feel about nurses! Additionally, everyone in Little Company of Mary Hospital’s ICU celebrated with Cinnabon® cinnamon rolls – 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.

How Can YOU Nominate An Extraordinary Nurse?

Patients, families and visitors may nominate a deserving nurse by:
1) Fill out the online form and hit submit.
2) Print and fill out the attached nomination form. You can mail the form to: 2800 West 95th Street. Evergreen Park, IL 60805, ATTN: Lisa DiMarco – or you can drop off the form at the Main or 94th Street entrance of the hospital.

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