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Seven Baton Rouge General Nurses Recognized for Extraordinary Contributions

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  • Written By: Baton Rouge General

BRG’s annual Nurse Excellence banquet honors excellence and compassioné

Baton Rouge, La. – Nursing professionals were honored for their extraordinary leadership and contributions at Baton Rouge General’s annual Nurse Excellence Awards Ceremony and Banquet on May 11 at the Renaissance Hotel.

We often think of nurses at a hospital bedside, in a doctor’s office caring for a patient, administering medicine or explaining a diagnosis. But the nurses recognized at this year’s banquet wear many more hats during their shifts – from one-on-one training with employees, to jumping in when a patient is coding, to meeting with executives about how to improve the discharge planning process.

“Nursing is a calling, and one of the greatest opportunities for service that anyone can choose. Our nurses are there when life begins, when it ends, and for the many challenging moments in between,” said Monica Nijoka, Chief Nursing Officer and VP of Patient Care at BRG. “By touching the lives of patients and their families in this way, Baton Rouge General’s nurses elevate their profession to the highest degree. The gift of nursing comes with taking ownership of your calling, and the skill of nursing excellence comes with giving it away.”

BRG’s 2018 Nurse Excellence Award winners are:

  • Non-Traditional Nurse of the Year (tie)
    • Adriane Ruggiero, RN, Nursing Manager of Endoscopy
    • Margie Sevier, RN, House Supervisor of Nursing Services
  • Rookie of the Year – Heather Sullivan, RN, Critical Care
  • Patient Care Associate of the Year – Jacob Way, PCA, Oncology
  • Edith LoBue Leadership Award (tie)
    • Wanda Hughes, RN, Ph. D, Director of Patient Safety and Quality
    • Jobe Nasca, RN, Nursing Manager of Critical Care
  • Traditional Nurse of the Year – Misty Rabalais, RN, Emergency Department
    Baton Rouge General Nursing Hall of Fame – Brenda Brown, RN, BSN, Retiree
  • Nursing Scholarship Recipient – Adriane Ruggiero, RN, Nursing Manager of Endoscopy

ICU nurse Meredith Cooper, BSN, RN, CCRN, was also recognized for being named the Louisiana Hospital Association’s Clinical Practice Nurse of the Year in March. Nominations were submitted by peers, leaders, and in some cases, entire departments.

BRG was recently the only hospital in Baton Rouge to receive the Healthgrades 2018 Patient Safety Excellence Award, ranking in the top ten percent of hospitals across the country for patient safety. BRG was also named #1 in Greater Baton Rouge for Overall Medical Care by CareChex for 2015, 2016 and 2017, was named in the top 2% of hospitals nationwide for Overall Medical Care by CareChex in 2017 and received the Patient Safety Excellence Award from Healthgrades in 2016.

About Baton Rouge General Medical Center
Baton Rouge General Medical Center is the area’s first community hospital with 588 licensed beds between two campuses. Baton Rouge General opened its doors in 1900, and has provided the Greater Baton Rouge community with high-quality healthcare for generations. Established in 1970, Baton Rouge General's Regional Burn Center is one of only 125 burn centers in the U.S. verified by the American Burn Association and plays an integral role in supporting other Gulf Coast states when the need arises. Baton Rouge General has been an accredited teaching hospital since 1991, with medical education programs including a School of Nursing, School of Radiologic Technology, Family Medicine Residency Program, Internal Medicine Residency Program, and Sports Medicine Fellowship Program. For more information, visit, find us on Facebook at and follow us on Twitter at @BRGeneral.