Cathrine Hundley, Coordinator of Skilled Nursing Facility Care, Named June Employee of Excellence

June 19, 2020
June EOE 600w

Our best employees don’t work for recognition. They work for the health of our community. And by advocating tirelessly for our residents, they serve NHRMC’s mission of Leading Our Community to Outstanding Health.

Cathrine Hundley focuses her efforts on ensuring quality care for residents of skilled nursing facilities across the region.

Cathrine is committed to providing excellent care across the continuum.

Sometimes, that means ensuring the residents receive excellent care after they leave NHRMC. Ore even after they leave the SNF … sometimes Cathrine schedules follow-up appointments for patients who have been discharged from a SNF. By ensuring that these patients get the follow-up care they need, she is helping to prevent readmissions.

Cathrine also advocates for these patients by helping the SNFs adopt best care practices. She promotes evidence-based treatment guidelines within SNFs for CHF, COPD, wound care, and now COVID care.

Dr. Mary Rudyk works closely with Cathrine in driving improvements in SNF care. She praised Cathrine’s ownership of her segment of the patient population. Recently, a COVID outbreak in a neighboring county sent shockwaves through the region. That weekend, Cathrine personally delivered much needed personal protective equipment to one of the nursing homes in that county. That PPE enabled the workers to care for those patients in a safer environment. Cathrine’s efforts helped reduce the spread of COVID to healthcare workers and patients and probably saved the lives of some of our most vulnerable patients.

Dr. Rudyk said; "We need more Cathrines in our institution. She is consistent in her desire to help others. She strives to develop a team approach to tasks that need to get done and will always share in the positive things that occur from the team experience."

For example, Cathrine was identified recently in a parade outside of Pender Memorial Hospital, masked and carrying a homemade sign that said: “PMH You Inspire Me Every Day.” Though stationed in Wilmington, she had gone out of her way to make sure she was there in person to show her support and encouragement of her colleagues at Pender.

Dr. Rudyk added: “Everyone who comes into contact with Cathrine is improved by the experience, and it is a great privilege to work with her every day. She inspires me to be a better leader, colleague, and person.”

And we still haven’t touched on one of the most remarkable moments of dedication that Cathrine displayed.

When Hurricane Florence hit in 2018, many community members took shelter at Hoggard High School. It became apparent that many of them needed medical care far beyond what was offered at the shelter. Cathrine was drafted onto a team to open a shelter at Codington Elementary School. She served as "chief nurse" of this ad hoc shelter, organizing a clinical staff who had never worked together into a cohesive unit caring for up to 50 patients. She never complained, pushed back or deferred, taking on the task of organizing clinical people she didn't know and commanding their attention and respect.

For the next three days, Cathrine was a constant in her caregiving role for 15 hours a day, assisting with food service, patient intake, employee issues and, often, with the patient care itself. She also served as the most supportive chief nurse to her leader as possible, appearing whenever needed to help out with a logistical issue.

Her Compassion shone every day at Codington, when she took the time to listen and get to know every patient and make them feel special. She made sure they had special treats, snacks or other comforts from home. When Vigilant Hope brought portable showers on the third day, Cathrine organized a shower schedule for each of our patients and assisted many of them with the showering process.

Scott Whisnant writes; “We are lucky to have Cathrine at New Hanover Regional Medical Center, both from a professional, a personal and a moral standpoint. The experience at the Codington Shelter would have devolved into chaos quickly without her steady leadership. She deserves to be recognized as an Employee of Excellence.”