Casey WestphalHailey GauntJane BeersLila DewittMary O'Toole-Hemme

Sanford Luverne employees receive awards

Seven others among nominees from local clinic

Five Sanford Luverne Medical Center employees were recognized by Sanford Health’s south region of hospitals and clinics.

Casey Westphal, Jane Beers, Hailey Gaunt, Mary O’Toole-Hemme and Lila Dewitt were honored with four awards, with seven other nurses receiving nominations.

Westphal, a registered nurse and health coach, received the Structural Empowerment Award, which recognizes “professional engagement, development and commitment to community involvement.”

Westphal served as a role model involved in shared governance and decision-making structures and processes. She chaired the Enterprise Ambulatory Council when it was established in 2018 and was chairman through 2019, now serving as past chair.

Westphal has also taken the lead role in working with telehealth in Luverne and providing telehealth-nursing support for the psychologist.

Beers, a certified medical assistant, was honored with the Star Performance Award for helping nursing staff maintain safe, reliable and person-centered care.

According to her peers, Beers demonstrates significant partnership and environmental improvement for staff nurses and patients. They said she is known for her attention to detail and accuracy and relationship building, particularly in her time in the cardiac rehab program.”

Gaunt and O’Toole-Hemme shared the Florence Nightingale award.

Both are registered nurses recognized for practicing both the art and science of nursing. Through strength of character, commitment and competence, their peers recognized the nurses for their contribution to the evolution of the nursing practice.

O’Toole-Hemme “shows compassion, a gentle touch, soft-spoken words and a genuine caring,” her peers wrote. “She has a calming effect on hospital patients at Sanford Luverne and is compassionate and competent in what she does.”

O’Toole-Hemme retired just as she was nominated for the award.

“Gaunt is patient and calm with patients and is known for her professionalism, knowledge and for her caring and gentle demeanor,” her peers wrote. “She is known for being graceful under pressure and for being a good listener.”

Dewitt, a registered nurse who works with outpatient chemotherapy patients, was given the Distinguished Wisdom Keeper honor.

She is respected by her peers for her wisdom and experience and has worked several years as a clinical instructor for a local nursing program.

They said patients frequently ask for Dewitt by name and that she is focused and detail driven, keeping notecards for her and other nurses to quickly reference.

Other nominees from Sanford Luverne included Michelle Burkett, Kayla Peterson and Anne Vaske for the Florence Nightingale award, Sue Sandbulte, Friend of Nursing, Janet Friedrichsen and Vicki Nelson, Star Performance, and Kristi Scholten for the Transformational Leadership.

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