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Updated Jul 21 @ 11:21AM

Northside celebrates its certified nurses

‘Chicken Soup’ author talks stress management

The annual Northside Hospital Celebration of Certified Nurses honors the staff who’ve gone beyond normal job requirements and have achieved certification in their fields. Author and former nurse LeAnn Thieman tells of her time as a nurse at the Northside Hospital Certified Nurses Celebration.
From left, Nicole Ajavon, Amie Jarrous, David Halpern and Margaret Henry talk about their experiences with the hospital.

FORSYTH COUNTY, Ga. — According to Northside Hospital, fewer than 20 percent of American nurses are board certified. That’s why when the hospital reached nearly 1,000 nurses earning certification, it decided to celebrate.

The fifth annual Northside Hospital Certified Nurses Celebration March 23 honored the 986 certified nurses on staff.

Keynote speaker LeAnn Thieman is a former nurse and wrote 14 “Chicken Soup for the Soul” books, many focusing on nursing. She told the nurses how they can reduce their stress. She said the four main ways to do that is to take time for deep breathing, have a positive mindset, laugh often and forgive.

She also spoke highly of Northside.

“You work in the hospital that’s No. 1 in the state of Georgia, No. 8 in the nation for healthcare and No. 1 in the Southeast,” Thieman said. “You know what a great place you work for. I toured the hospital and I can tell you are a family who loves each other. You have something very special here.”

Along with the Northside staff, Thieman said she, too, is proud of the certified nurses.

“You have lots of ways you can spend your time,” Thieman said. “You are pulled in so many directions and have so many balls in the air. You took the commitment and priority, to not be a good nurse, but to be an expert nurse in your field. You committed your time, energy and motivation to be the very best nurse you could possibly be. The world needs more of you.”

Janis Dubow, vice president and chief nursing officer for the hospital, said the certifications are a way to gain expertise within a particular area such as obstetrics or orthopedic. The achievement means they have gone above and beyond to learn about that area of medicine.

“They really help us improve patient care,” Dubow said. “They can help us decrease mortality rates and show an improvement in patient outcomes. We want them to know how important and valuable they are to us.”

Recognition, like the event, is important to show, Dubow said.

“Nurses are so focused on taking care of the patient,” Dubow said. “They need to know the leadership within their organization is very appreciative of everything they do. If this can be motivational and a ‘thank you,’ that’s what we’re looking for. We want them to know how appreciated they are for all that they do.”

One source of gratitude is through the Halpern Family RN Scholarship. This year’s winner is Amie Jarrous, clinical development specialist in the progressive cardiac care unit at Northside.

David Halpern set up the scholarship after his mother received care at Northside.

“I feel like everyone at Northside is like family to me,” Halpern said. “Mom is doing well and attended her first Braves game ever. The doctor even allowed us to have one hot dog. This scholarship is about all of you. The winner is reflective of the caring attitude all of you have.”

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