(Aug. 13, 2021) – KHA's Health Care Worker of the Year Award highlights hospital employees who have made a significant contribution to the betterment of their hospital. These individuals are nominated for this award because they routinely go above and beyond the call of duty.
Many of us live every day with chronic conditions. Diabetes is one that requires constant management and a steady support network. Fortunately, for the diabetic patients at Nemaha Valley Community Hospital, they have a real-life champion on their side. Karen Hynek, director of diabetic education, offers her patients a deep well of comfort, encouragement, support and kindness.
Karen shows great empathy for the challenges that come with a diabetes diagnosis. She answers her personal cell phone day and night when patients have concerns about their blood sugar readings. She often comes in on her days off to pick up supplies or help patients get back on track. She has done this steadily and with a great attitude for many years. After announcing her plan to retire, Karen was adamant her replacement have a strong passion for diabetes education and continue the program by always providing compassion and top-notch care.
In her 37 years with NVCH, Karen has participated in numerous projects. She helped to refine and shape the new hospital and Seneca Family Practice Clinic expansion; created the Infection Control Program; started childbirth classes; opened the Home Health Program; helped develop the swing-bed program; and enhanced the Employee Health Nurse position. Karen has helped countless patients manage their diabetes and avoid complications. Her dedication is evident in the number of patients that attend her Diabetic Support Group. NVCH and the surrounding community are fortunate to have Karen caring for them.
KHA thanks Karen for a lifetime of service and wishes her a happy retirement. She will be recognized, along with other Health Care Worker of the Year nominees, during the KHA Awards Luncheon at the 2021 KHA Annual Convention, Thursday, Sept. 9, at the Hyatt Regency Wichita/Century II Convention Center in Wichita.