2020 Advocacy Award Recipient

Lynda Lepp, RN, CPAN, CAPA Named 2020 Advocacy Award Recipient

Every year ABPANC recognizes a CPAN or CAPA certified nurse who exemplifies leadership as a patient advocate with its highest honor, the Advocacy Award.

The Advocacy Award winner is recognized and celebrated publicly at the ABPANC CPAN/CAPA Celebration Luncheon during the ASPAN National Conference. While this year’s conference was canceled due to COVID-19, ABPANC nevertheless is honoring and celebrating this year’s deserving recipient, Lynda Lepp, RN, CPAN, CAPA.

Lynda was nominated by her colleague, Valerie Boatwright, ADN, CAPA. Lynda works in the Outpatient Surgery Images PACU at the University of New Mexico Hospital. Lynda is also active as an ABPANC Certification Coach and serves as president of the ASPAN PANAMN Component. Valerie relayed the following information as part of Lynda’s nomination:

“Pediatric nursing is Lynda’s first passion and her second passion is patient advocacy. Our PACU relies on Lynda’s expert pediatric background in community health, Neonatal ICU and Pediatric PACU to help us serve our special little patients. As our pre-anesthesia evaluation nurse, Lynda is often the person who notifies our team of the patients scheduled to recover in the PACU. She knows the patient’s history, prognosis and support system before they arrive to us, and she shares this vital information with the PACU team. Lynda is always willing to step up to care for our pediatric cancer patients. She does all she can to help the patients and their families. Lynda even crochets special blankets to help comfort these patients as well to show the families how much she really cares.

“We will always remember one little four-year-old girl. Her disease was advanced and the prognosis was poor. She was receiving palliative radiation oncology treatments requiring that she remain perfectly still for the procedure. General anesthesia enabled the pediatric patient to receive her treatments. Unfortunately, the child woke up many times with emergence delirium.

“The girl’s grandmother and mother were present for the recovery. Her grandmother was very attentive and comforting to her granddaughter. Her mother appeared to be detached from the situation and possibly apprehensive about caring for her daughter as she emerged from anesthesia. The PACU team of nurses was having difficulty making a connection with the patient’s mother during her care. Lynda was aware of the tension. As the patient’s birthday approached, Lynda had a plan. She brought specially decorated birthday cupcakes for the patient and her family to help them celebrate her birthday. We all realized that this was probably going to be this little girl’s last birthday. Everyone was touched by her simple gesture. The patient’s mother began to communicate more openly with the PACU team. We could see that she was more relaxed and comforting to her daughter. We also observed that the mother and the grandmother communicated with each other in a more supportive way. Although our celebration was bittersweet, Lynda’s simple kindness at the right moment made a healing difference for all.”

Congratulations to Lynda on this outstanding honor and for your compassionate care as a PACU nurse. “Lynda truly exemplifies all that the ABPANC Advocacy Award and perianesthesia nursing certification represents,” said Krista Bower, ABPANC CEO. “We applaud Lynda for her commitment to quality patient care and advocacy; leadership; compassion; and advanced knowledge and expertise in perianesthesia care.”