Supporting Home and Community-based Health Services for Chicago’s Medically Underserved

SuperStar Award in Community Nursing

VNA Foundation initiated the Super Star Award in In Community Nursing Award in 2002. Since then, we have awarded seven winners $25,000 each, and twenty-three runners-up and finalists awards ranging from $1,000 to $10,000.

Current Status

In order to continue to meet the pressing direct service needs of Chicago’s medically underserved, the VNA Foundation Board of Directors made the difficult decision in 2009 to suspend this award indefinitely.

Although the VNA Foundation’s desire to promote and support the role of nursing in the community is as great as ever, circumstances such as rising insurance rates and dwindling endowments forced prioritization of needs. After extended discussion and review, the board felt compelled to direct all available dollars directly to its partner grantee agencies – those offering home and community-based healthcare to Chicago’s most needy medically underserved communities. In this way, we are fulfilling the Foundation’s primary mission during a period when its assistance may be more vital than at any other time in its history.

Now that we’ve clarified the current status of this award, we’d like you to meet past recipients whose outstanding commitment to their communities make them true “super stars”.

About the Super Star In Community Nursing Award

VNA Foundation’s Super Star in Community Nursing Award was introduced in 2001 to acknowledge the service that public health/community health nurses provide, recognize the value of nursing in the community, help attract young people to the profession, and contribute to efforts to decrease the nursing shortage.

Hundreds of thousands of nursing positions are unfilled today. That number is expected to skyrocket in the coming years as seventy-eight million aging Baby Boomers begin placing unprecedented demands on America’s healthcare system. The nursing workforce shortage is a major factor in emergency department overcrowding, cancellation of elective surgeries, discontinuation of clinical services, and the limited ability of the health system to respond to a mass casualty incident. In addition, ninety percent of nursing homes report an insufficient number of nurses to provide even the most basic care, and some home health agencies are being forced to refuse new admissions. Although there are currently shortages of other health care personnel, nurses are the primary source of care and support for patients at the most vulnerable points in their lives. Nearly every person’s healthcare experience involves a registered nurse. Birth and death, and all the various forms of care in between, are attended by the knowledge, support and comfort of nurses.

For seven consecutive years, an all-volunteer, independent panel of community health experts (including longtime physician and public health activist Quentin Young, M.D., members of the public health community, and former “Super Star” recipients) selected a Super Star Nurse award winner and runners-up.

Read about our past winners, and their amazing accomplishments and inspiring work:

2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002

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