Flagler Hospital nurse recognized with DAISY Award


Tatyana Frunker RN has been honored as the most recent DAISY Award recipient at Flagler Hospital. She was honored for providing excellent and compassionate care to a patient during a recent trying time.

The DAISY Award is an international program that rewards and celebrates the extraordinary compassion and skill nurses give daily. Frunker, a nurse in Flagler Health+’s Outpatient Surgery unit, was nominated by a patient diagnosed with atypical hyperplasia (ADH), a precancerous condition that affects cells in the breast, who needed to have a double mastectomy.

“(Frunker) shared her personal story with me about her twin daughters that had mammograms at age 40,” wrote the patient in her nomination letter. “I am around the same age and she shared with me how one daughter’s results were fine and the younger daughter's results were the exact same thing I had —atypical hyperplasia. She said she was shocked and shared a bit of her daughter's journey through this and also related how her daughter is doing great now and is young and beautiful. She assured me that I was in good hands with Dr. Routhier and Dr. Vu and that I too am young and will come out of this OK. I was having surgery for a double mastectomy and suffer from anxiety.”

Their shared experience provided hope and comfort to the patient, who continued, “I was in an anxious state of mind and this story was very encouraging to me. It is nice to know that someone else has gone through the same trials and they came out on the other side healthy.”

“Tatyana represents so well what it means to be a caring nurse in the treatment of this patient,” said Carlton DeVooght, president and CEO of Flagler Health+. “She is a fitting and well-deserved recipient of the DAISY Award. Her level of care and her willingness to share her own personal experience made a tremendous difference in this patient’s life, and we are sincerely grateful.”

“I have always felt like I wanted to help people and it is definitely something that makes me happy,” said Frunker, who came to the United States from Ukraine 26 years ago and has been a nurse at Flagler Health+ for 22 years. “There were lots of worthy candidates, so this is an honor for me.”

In recognition of this honor, Frunker received a stone-carved “Healers Touch” trophy, a DAISY winner’s pin, a gift basket and a $200 bonus.

“I would like to donate my winnings to the Ukrainian people in my homeland. There is still a lot of help that is needed there,” she added.

Frunker’s nomination was among 53 recognitions that were submitted by patients, their families and Flagler Health+ team members.

The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses is part of The DAISY (D)iseases Attacking the Immune System Foundation’s program to recognize the super-human efforts nurses make every day.

The not-for-profit DAISY Foundation, based in Glen Ellen, Calif., was established by J. Mark Barnes and his family in memory of his son J. Patrick Barnes. J. Patrick Barnes died at the age of 33 in 1999 from complications of idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (IT)P, a little-known autoimmune disease.

The nursing care Patrick and his family received while he was ill inspired this unique means of thanking nurses for making a profound difference in the lives of their patients and families.