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University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences

University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing’s 13th Annual Cameos of Caring® Event Honors Area Nurses

PITTSBURGH, Oct. 31, 2011  Sixty-four nurses from 45 area health care facilities, eight schools of nursing and two international facilities will be honored at the 13th annual Cameos of Caring® awards gala on Saturday, Nov. 6. More than 1,150 guests are expected to attend this year’s event at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. Mike Clark, WTAE-TV news anchor, will serve as emcee.

The University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing developed the Cameos of Caring awards program more than 10 years ago to celebrate the profession and to help alleviate the shortage of nurses.  “Recruitment and retention are key to attracting new nurses and keeping nurses committed to the profession,” said Jacqueline Dunbar-Jacob, Ph.D., R.N., professor and dean, University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing. “The Cameos of Caring program inspires more people to enter the profession by increasing awareness about all of the opportunities available in nursing, and the program provides a venue for area hospitals to recognize the contributions their nurses make to quality health care.”

Awardees at each participating hospital are nominated by their colleagues in recognition of their profound impact on the lives of patients, family members and co-workers. To date, Cameos of Caring has honored over 600 nurses, including this year’s winners.

“Job satisfaction leads to improved retention of nurses, and it also has a direct correlation to patient satisfaction and improved patient outcomes,” noted Dr. Dunbar-Jacob.

Responding to studies that show a link between higher levels of nursing education and patient outcomes, the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing also established the Cameos of Caring Endowed Nursing Scholarship for registered nurses to continue their education. The Cameos of Caring awards gala has raised more than $1,000,000 for this scholarship program since the fund’s establishment in 2000. This year, Cameos of Caring will award 25 scholarships bringing the total number of scholarships awarded to 146.

In keeping with the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing’s commitment to the advancement and promotion of the nursing profession, the Cameos of Caring Program & Awards Gala has been expanded to include three additional award categories.  The Advanced Practice Award debuted in 2002 to honor nurses who practice at a higher level of patient care and who possess a master's degree. In 2003, the School of Nursing partnered with the Center for Organ Recovery and Education to develop the Donate Life Award, recognizing advocacy for organ and tissue donation. In 2006, area schools of nursing joined the program to recognize extraordinary faculty with the Nurse Educator Award, bringing the event full-circle as the future of nursing depends on the quality of instruction nursing students receive from today’s expert nurse educators. In 2011, the Case Manager award was added to recognize this expanding nursing role. 

For more information about Cameos of Caring, visit www.cameosofcaring.nursing.pitt.edu, or call Joan Britten at (412) 624-4463.

Media wishing to cover the event should contact Jennifer Yates at (412) 328-7899 or YatesJC@upmc.edu.

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