Kelley earns ‘Excellence in Nursing’ memorial award

Pictured, from left, are Luke Meissner, oncology/cardiology nurse manager; Kate Kelley, RN; Betsy Buck, MD, Adirondack Internal Medicine and Pediatrics; Linda McClarigan, chief patient experience officer (Photo provided)

SARANAC LAKE –Lake Placid native Kathleen “Kate” Kelley is this year’s recipient of the Meghan E. Handler “Excellence in Nursing” memorial award.

The award, established by Dr. Richard and Leslie Handler in memory of their daughter, Meghan, is given annually to a registered nurse employed by Adirondack Health with one to three years professional experience, a commitment to improving and/or expanding their knowledge base, excellent technical skills and efficiency, and demonstrated compassion and rapport with patients’ families, significant others and colleagues.

Kelley graduated from nursing school in 2015 and completed a bachelor’s degree in communications at SUNY Cortland. She found herself drawn to nursing as both an outlet for her caring personality and a means by which to support herself while remaining in the High Peaks region she loves. Kelley began her nursing career on the medical/surgical unit at Adirondack Medical Center in Saranac Lake, where her empathetic nursing practice and dedication to her patients were quickly noted by her peers. In December 2017, Kelley accepted a new role as clinical leader of the infusion unit at Adirondack Health’s Merrill Center for Oncology. She is preparing to sit for the oncology certified nurse exam – a rigorous certification requiring extensive knowledge of oncology nursing practice, treatment modalities, symptom management, oncologic emergencies and palliative care.

“Kate is an outstanding nurse who exemplifies the character traits celebrated by the Meghan E. Handler ‘Excellence in Nursing’ memorial award,” said Luke Meissner, nurse manager of Adirondack Health’s oncology and cardiology practices. “Her eagerness to learn and compassion for her patients inspire those around her, promoting a positive and collaborative care environment wherever she happens to be.”

The Meghan E. Handler “Excellence in Nursing” memorial award is accompanied by a check for $500.