Pamela Laszewski wins Nightingale Award for Nursing Excellence

Pamela Laszewski, BSN, RN, OCN, clinical leader of Radiation at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, has been selected by Oakland University to receive the Nightingale Award for Nursing Excellence in the category of Post-Acute Care & Specialty Nursing.

Laszewski will be just one of 10 individuals and 10 runners-up to be honored at the prestigious awards ceremony on May 10, 2018 at the San Marino Club in Troy. The awards were created as a way to spotlight nurses from a variety of clinical roles who go above and beyond in their care for their patients and their families.

More than 700 nurses, physicians and administrators, as well as family members and nursing supporters are expected to attend this year’s awards ceremony.

“We are so proud of Pam for her commitment to patient care and professional nursing practice,” said Kathleen Carolin, RN, MSA, chief nursing officer at Karmanos Cancer Institute. “We are thrilled that she is receiving this well-deserved recognition and prestigious award.”

Along with this recognition, Laszewski will receive a check for $1,000, a solid bronze statue of Florence Nightingale and a special Nightingale ceremonial pin. Nominees were nominated by their peers, supervisors, friends and patients in recognition for their superior service and expertise.

“It is a humbling experience to be receiving such a distinguished award,” said Laszewski. “As a radiation oncology nurse for 21 years, I still find that my favorite part of my job is being able to help people. It is an honor to be recognized for that.”

Denise Henderson, M.Ed., BSN, RN, OCN, educator in the Patient and Community Education Department at Karmanos Cancer Institute, nominated Laszewski because of her creativity, respect for others, demonstrated integrity and passion.

“Pamela is always thinking outside the box to find solutions to clinical problems,” said Henderson. “Her passion for this work has sustained ongoing research over a number of years and led to new standards of practice related to patient education about prevention and treatment of radiation dermatitis.”

Laszewski led the way to launching a skin care research project, where she found that adherence to the prescribed skin care regimen for radiation oncology patients was inconsistent. Through her research, she has helped change the way skin care adherence is viewed by radiation oncology and wound care nurses across the country.

“Pamela is an expert in the field of radiation oncology,” said Clara Beaver, MSN, RN, AOCNS, ACNS-BC, clinical nurse specialist at Karmanos Cancer Institute. “She has made significant contributions to the field through her publications, presentations and research.”

In addition to her research, Laszewski believes that becoming an Oncology Certified Nurse (OCN), a certification she obtained in 2012, is an important professional goal for all oncology nurses. She has encouraged her team and other professional colleagues to reach the same goal. By 2015, 100 percent of her department received their OCN Certification.

Laszewski was previously awarded with the 2017 Oncology Nursing Society Excellence in Radiation Therapy Nursing Award, as well as an Alumni of Distinction by St. Clair College.