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Saint Peter’s ICU Nurses Win 3rd Beacon Award, a Record Achieved by Only 10 Units in the Country

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - The Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Saint Peter’s University Hospital has earned its third Beacon Award for Critical-Care Excellence. Presented by the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, the Beacon Award recognizes the nation’s top critical (intensive) care units. There are more than 6,000 ICUs in the United States and only 10 in the entire country have earned this coveted award three times.

beacon 2012

Saint Peter’s University Hospital ICU nurses, left to right, Klyr Javier Filamore, Wilhemina Ungco and Judy Cook tend to a patient. The ICU has won its third Beacon Award. Only 10 units in the United States have accomplished that feat.

"Congratulations on achieving a Beacon Award for Excellence,” said a representative from the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses. “This accomplishment represents one of many significant milestones on your unit's path to optimal outcomes and exceptional care for patients and their families."

To earn the Beacon Award, ICUs must meet high national standards, providing exceptional care to patients and their families while fostering and sustaining a healthy work environment. Units are judged on 42 criteria, and nurses must demonstrate they achieve excellent patient outcomes, have created and promote a healing environment conducive to their patients’ well-being and exhibit leadership and ethical nursing practices. The hospital is evaluated on innovative recruitment and retention programs that ensure the ICU is well-staffed with highly skilled nurses. The hospital also must provide education, training and mentoring to nurses; provide opportunities for original nursing research; and demonstrate that evidence-based best practices are implemented and followed.

“To receive the Beacon Award three times is quite an honor,” said Pamela Harmon, RNC, nurse manager of Saint Peter’s University Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit. “It not only reflects the commitment and dedication of our ICU staff, but also their belief in our unit’s motto: strong minds, healing hands and compassionate hearts.

“Our nurses are very passionate about the care they give, and when combined with their exceptional skills and the outstanding level of nursing excellence they deliver, you can’t help but to succeed. I can honestly say our patients and their families benefit greatly as a result.”

The Intensive Care Unit at Saint Peter’s is a 26-bed fully monitored unit comprised of medical intensive care, cardiac intensive care and surgical intensive care. In addition to intensivist physicians, the 100-member unit is staffed by 80 registered nurses and three advanced practice nurses who ensure the highest level of patient care standards are followed. Seventy five percent of nurses who work on the unit hold the national CCRN certification for critical-care nursing.

About Saint Peter’s University Hospital

Saint Peter’s University Hospital is a 478-bed acute-care teaching hospital sponsored by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Metuchen. Saint Peter’s is a state-designated children’s hospital and a regional perinatal center, and is a regional specialist in geriatrics, oncology, orthopedics, women’s services and ambulatory care.

The Children’s Hospital at Saint Peter’s University Hospital provides families with access to a full range of pediatric specialties, including pediatric cardiology through its affiliation with The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Saint Peter’s is a sponsor of residency programs in obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics and internal medicine, and is a regional medical campus of Drexel University College of Medicine. Saint Peter’s also sponsors a residency program in orthopedic surgery in affiliation with the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

The hospital, part of the Saint Peter’s Healthcare System, is fully accredited by The Joint Commission, is recognized as a Magnet hospital for nursing excellence by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, is a three-time winner of the Beacon Award for Critical Care Excellence in Nursing, and is recognized by the American Diabetes Association in all areas of diabetes education. Saint Peter’s is located at 254 Easton Avenue, New Brunswick, NJ 08901. For more information about Saint Peter’s, please visit or call 732-745-8600.

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