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The CARNA Awards of Nursing Excellence recognize several Alberta RNs and NPs for their contributions to nursing practice, from recent graduate nurses to those who have inspired through decades of dedication.
In her 40 years of nursing, Brenda Hannah has made a profound impact on the profession as a motivator, mentor and leader. As administrator at Clifton Manor, a long-term care facility in Calgary, Brenda is responsible for all aspects of care and services to support 250 residents and 110 adult day-program clients.
Brenda started the KINDD program to provide specialized care for aging adults with developmental disabilities and day programs to Indo-Canadians and young adults experiencing early onset dementia. “Our KINDD program supports people in a friendly, family-oriented atmosphere with warmth and kindness,” says Brenda. “Families describe patients as well-cared for by the staff, with a focus on safety, cleanliness, inclusion and, most importantly, choice!”
Her ability to collaborate well with others is seen not just through her leadership at Clifton Manor, but in both the provincial and international communities of the nursing profession. As vice president of infection prevention and control with Alberta Health Services, Brenda was instrumental in the development and growth of the infection prevention and control teams around Alberta. This included acute care sites, long-term care facilities, ambulatory care and community health sites, along with 45,000 home-care clients and 85,000 staff.
During the H1N1 crisis in 2009, Brenda led the province-wide infection prevention and control response for all health professionals and services. “This was a scary time,” recalls Brenda. “We had to work quickly and effectively to get information out to people in our care, staff and the public. I was so proud of my team and the collaboration it took to ensure public safety.”
Always dedicated to supporting older adults and continuing care, Brenda was heavily involved in developing the 10-year continuing care strategic plan and the long-term care facility capacity plan with Calgary Health Region. “I wanted to be part of this because we need to prepare for the future, as Canadians age,” emphasizes Brenda.
Brenda was instrumental in developing Accreditation Canada’s Home Care and Community Standards, and Alberta Health’s Continuing Care Health Services and Accommodation Standards. Both these standards have been crucial in improving the quality of health care for seniors and all Albertans receiving community-based services.
With no signs of retiring just yet, Brenda has enjoyed her many roles working with the community and will surely impact the profession for years to come.