BVRMC Nurse Receives 2023 Great Iowa Nurses Award

Amber Chrischilles | February 8th, 2023


Headshot of Sarah Thompson, BVRMC Director of Medical/Surgical/ICUBuena Vista Regional Medical Center’s Sarah Thompson, Director of Medical/Surgical/ICU, has been awarded a 2023 Great Iowa Nurses Award. Seventy-seven nurses from throughout Iowa have been recognized as 2023 Great Iowa Nurses.

“I’m humbled and honored to be nominated by colleagues and chosen as a 2023 Great Iowa Nurse,” says Thompson. “I think of all the well-respected nurses who have been honored by this award who have come before me, and I feel so grateful to be in their company. I am indebted to all of the nurses who have mentored me in my 24 years of nursing. I hope that I am a mentor to young nurses who work with me today and in the future.”

Thompson first started working at BVRMC in 2005 as a registered nurse. With over 17 years of experience at BVRMC, Thompson has worked in the ER department, in the Cardiac & Pulmonary Rehab department and as a House Supervisor.

In January 2022, Thompson became Director of Medical/Surgical/ICU amidst an intense COVID-19 surge. During this time, the health care field was also experiencing a workforce shortage. With this tough combination of circumstances, Thompson took a leading charge to overcome many challenges.

Her peers describe her as one of the best examples of someone who walks the talk of being a true leader. Thompson filled in vacant shifts during days and nights, sometimes working seven days a week. She is respected as a nurse and a leader from staff and providers.

“We could not be more proud to have Sarah Thompson honored as one the 2023 Great Iowa Nurses. Sarah has been a long-standing nurse at BVRMC, with a reputation for excellent clinical skills and great compassion for her patients,” says BVRMC Chief Clinical Officer Michele Kelly. “In January 2022, during the height of the Omicron surge, she took on the leadership role for our Medical/Surgical inpatient unit. This transition also occurred during a time of workforce shortages. She has been nothing short of impressive in her new role. BVRMC is grateful for her leadership. This is a well-deserved honor for her.”

The program, formerly 100 Great Iowa Nurses, annually honors Iowa nurses for their contributions to the nursing profession. Nominations for the honor are reviewed by a committee of individuals from a variety of health care organizations across Iowa. Great Iowa Nurses are chosen on the basis of demonstrated service to patients, leadership and mentoring or serving as a role model.

100 Great Iowa Nurses was established in 2004 and hosted by the University of Iowa until 2020. In 2022, with the support of Mary Greeley Medical Center, the program was revived and renamed Great Iowa Nurses.

A virtual ceremony featuring videos from award recipients will be held on February 15.

BVRMC is proud of the work our nurses do every day to help improve the health of the people and communities we serve. Sarah Thompson has been an asset to BVRMC as a nurse and as a leader to other employees, creating a culture of excellence at BVRMC.

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