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Credo Award Winner

Credo Award winner Lindsey Netzel honored for passion and dedication to teaching

Infectious enthusiasm combined with a focus on others

by June 21, 2019

photo by Susan Urmy

Credo Award recipient Lindsey Netzel, MSN, RN, CCRN, FCCS, a nurse education specialist in the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU), has a reputation for doing whatever it takes to teach nurses.

“I have never encountered anyone as dedicated to those she serves,” says one nurse in her nomination letter. “A consummate professional, she always seeks to go above and beyond for the nursing education team and for the MICU. Lindsey is the first one to get here in the morning and the last one to leave at night.”

“I start from the moment someone is hired, whether that’s a nurse or a care partner or a medical receptionist and make them feel welcome and immerse them in the Vanderbilt culture.”

Netzel, who has worked at Vanderbilt since 2007 with the exception of six months as organ donor coordinator at Tennessee Donor Services, is responsible for educating 140 staff members.

“I start from the moment someone is hired, whether that’s a nurse or a care partner or a medical receptionist,” she said, “make them feel welcome and immerse them in the Vanderbilt culture.”

And she continues to educate them throughout their stay on the unit, providing boot camp courses, problem-solving exercises and developing the annual competency training to ensure Vanderbilt’s nurses are up-to-date with the latest in evidence-based practice.

Netzel has not only excelled in teaching a standard curriculum, but also has worked to improve what she is teaching. For example, she was a key part of a team that streamlined the competency process, implementing the well-regarded process at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, at Vanderbilt University Adult Hospital and Vanderbilt Psychiatric Hospital.

Her work was instrumental in expanding ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) from the Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit (CVICU) to the MICU in February. ECMO is a special machine that temporarily takes over the functions of the lungs or heart when one or both fail to perform.

Previously, patients who needed the service would have to be transported back and forth from the MICU to the CVICU, disrupting patient care. Thanks to the efforts of Netzel and others, that is no longer the case. She led educational efforts to bring the machine to nurses who would manage patient care while patients are on the device in the MICU.

Netzel was also lauded in her nomination for her educational efforts around paralytic agent/medication safety during transport emergencies. “She stayed past shift change nearly every night,” one nurse nominator wrote. “She was still in her office at 9 p.m. to ensure that her work was complete.”

Netzel’s enthusiasm for her work is infectious.

“As an educator, it’s really exciting to see a staff member learn something new and then actually go out and do it,” she said. “And then, a couple of weeks later, I see them teach somebody else. It truly makes me excited.”

Credo Award, MICU, Lindsey Netzel, ECMO