Special to the
Opelika Observer

As a young girl growing up in Auburn, Margaret Ewell had a passion for taking care of others, and it would set her on a path to become a nurse. At a very early age, she would assist in the care of her sick grandmother and wanted to do anything possible to save her.
It was those moments that inspired her to follow her dream and become a licensed practical nurse. Ewell’s compassion continues to make a difference and exemplifies her commitment to the profession. Her hard work and dedication led to CAVHCS honoring her with a surprise DAISY Award ceremony at the Tuskegee campus.
What is the DAISY (Diseases Attacking the Immune System) Foundation?
The DAISY Foundation has a national program to recognize the exceptional performances of nurses from around the country. The program was inspired by the care Patrick Barnes received by nurses after he was admitted to the hospital and diagnosed with Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura, which is a disease that attacks the immune system.
According to the DAISY Foundation, “we created The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses and piloted the program at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, whose nurses cared for Patrick during the last weeks of his life. Our goal was to ensure that nurses know how deserving they are of our society’s profound respect for the education, training, brainpower, and skill they put into their work, and especially for the caring with which they deliver their care. At the time we started the program, we could not have anticipated that The DAISY Award would come to be regarded as a strategic tool for nurse recruitment and retention and would be adopted by healthcare facilities all over the U.S. and beyond.”
The bond between our nurses and our Veteran patients is a vital component in how our health care system delivers the high-quality care our Veterans deserve and have grown to expect at our health care system.