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Lisa Kalafus

Employer: Gaylord Specialty Healthcare
Title: Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer
Winner Category: Nurse
More Information

A nurse for 34 years, Lisa Kalafus provides leadership and direction for nursing staff and is responsible for planning, organizing and directing all nursing functions at Gaylord. She previously spent 31 years at St. Vincent’s Medical Center, where she held a number of leadership roles, including director of nursing operations.

Q: Why is she a HealthCare Hero?

It is said that Kalafus “leads with the heart.” Dedicated to providing nothing less than exceptional patient-centered care, she constantly exudes her commitment to Gaylord’s mission. Kalafus truly enriches the experience of her nursing staff through professional growth and recognition opportunities.

She makes herself accessible to staff on all shifts and incorporates their feedback into her decisions. She initiated nursing shared governance to allow her nurses a voice in their practice. Kalafus adopts new technologies as a means to improve the efficiency of workflows and enhance patient safety.

Q: How has COVID-19 changed the way you do your job?

I feel COVID enhanced my creativity and quick problem solving. I didn’t always have the answers, but as a team we collaborated to ensure staff and patient safety.

Today, facing significant nursing shortages, being innovative continues to be a critical component of my day-to-day job as chief nursing officer.

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