NCSN of the Year Recognition Awards
NCSN of the Year Recognition Awards
The NCSN of the Year Award is presented at the NASN Annual Conference, and it honors an NCSN who has promoted certification as well as worked to enhance general competency in school nursing. The NCSN of the Year is selected from of a pool of nominees who have been nominated by their peers.
NCSN of the Year 2019
Kathleen (Kathy) Bell, NCSN has been a nurse since 1981, and has been a school nurse since 1992. In addition to being the school nurse at Goldenview Middle School in Anchorage Alaska, she is also a part-time nurse in the Providence Hospital Pediatric ICU. Kathy became a Nationally Certified School Nurse in February of 1999 and has maintained her certification to the present time. She was in the first group in Anchorage to be nationally certified.
In addition to her role as a school nurse, Kathy, with another hospital nurse, a clerical person and some student nurses, on the first Saturday of each month, hosts immunization clinics through the Providence Hospital. She receives a grant from the hospital foundation for supplies and her vaccines are free from the state.
Kathy also hosts many afterschool programs that benefit the entire community. She presents a Red Cross baby–sitter program for middle school students, and with the help of the Home Economics Teacher included the Migrant Education Program.
She also teaches a two-week cooking class to her baby sitter graduates and other interested students. This class meets three days a week and prepares the students to start dinner for the parents of children for whom they babysit or for their own parents.
Kathy is active with the Alaska Nurses Association. She is a prior board member of the Alaska School Nurses Association (ASNA), serving both as Vice-President and President twice. She is on the Alaska Nurses Association continuing education planning group and plans and develops criteria for continuing education for all school nurses in Alaska through ASNA annual conference, the Anchorage School District continuing education programs and other organizations. One of the first board members of the Anchorage Chapter of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, Kathy continues to serve as secretary.
Part of the Leadership team Healthcare Services for the Anchorage School District, she is implementing the use of electronic health records in the district health offices.
One of the first school nurses in the Anchorage School District to become nationally certified, Kathy has encouraged many other school nurses to sit for the exam. She advocated for school nurses to receive a bonus from the district after becoming nationally certified as teachers do. This was not an easy task and took many years to accomplish. She worked with 4-5 other school nurses and put together information showing the school nurses were on a par with speech-language pathologists, school psychologists, and other school professionals. She wrote a proposal, going back year after year, with supporting information as to why school nurses deserved the same bonus as others and would not take no for an answer.
Kathy was a part of the group that created a section of the state teacher certification manual which described the process for school nurses to receive the bonus.
In addition to the NCSN of the year award, Kathy has also received the Alaska School Nurse of the Year Award in 2006 and the Providence Hospital Mission Spirit Award in 2000.
The NCSN of the Year Award is presented to a nationally certified school nurse who is nominated by a peer or peers.
The NCSN of the Year Award recognizes a certified school nurse who has been influential in promoting certification and exceptional competency in the field. Any NCSN can be nominated. Do you know a deserving school nurse?