Kelly Irving, associate director for Patient Care Services at the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center, was one of six nurses selected for this national 2021 award
A Houston VA nurse recently won the national Secretary’s Award for Excellence in Nursing and Advancement of Nursing Programs for helping to improve health care services for Veterans.
Kelly Irving, associate director for Patient Care Services at the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center, was one of six nurses selected to receive this national 2021 award. The announcement was made this week by VA Secretary Denis McDonough.
“Over the past year, our incredible professionals have answered the call to serve,” said McDonough. “Our teammates, who have displayed superior performance throughout this challenging pandemic, not only cared for Veterans enrolled in our system, but stepped up to support VA’s Fourth Mission efforts to care for civilian patients in communities across the nation. In the face of uncertainty, they cared for our most vulnerable and saved lives.”
Irving was recognized for her leadership of more than 1,800 nurses, allowing the organization to meet its goals of providing high quality, safe nursing care for Veterans, and ensuring staff safety at the Houston VA during the global pandemic. Her guidance of the facility’s nursing leadership led to the development of a contingency plan to bolster the availability of direct care nursing staff during the pandemic.
VA established this award in 1984 as a way to honor nurses and executives across its health care system.
“In line with VA’s vision of quality care and service, Kelly Irving works tirelessly as our chief nurse to ensure our team and the Veterans who depend upon us for care have the very best experience,” said Frank Vazquez, director of the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center, one of the largest VA hospitals in the country. “We are so proud of her, and of all our Houston VA nurses, who have performed with selfless dedication during this pandemic.”