POPLAR BLUFF – The John J. Pershing VA Medical Center recently presented its “BEE Award” to Advanced Medical Support Assistant, LaRonda Jarrell.
The BEE Award stands for “Being Exceptional Every (Day)” and was adopted by the John J. Pershing VA Medical Center in 2021. It is designed to be the DAISY Award counterpart for nursing assistants and health technicians; however, since its inception, the facility expanded the award to include health aides, medical instrument technicians, telehealth clinical technicians, and support personnel.
While the DAISY Award is for nurse practitioners, RNs and LPNs, the BEE Award goes hand-in-hand with it.
“The DAISY cannot survive without the BEE, and the BEE cannot survive without a DAISY,” said Rebecca Foy, acting associate director for patient care services.
Jarrell has worked at the John J. Pershing VA Medical Center for 11 years, including the last four as an advanced medical support assistant in the facility’s Care in the Community program at its Cripple Creek annex.
Jarrell, who was surprised when her name was called, said after accepting her award, “I’m very excited and very surprised. This means the world to me because sometimes you go day by day and feel like you don’t get recognition, and this means a lot.”
Her father served in the Army National Guard, and she keeps veterans very close to her heart.
“They put their lives on the line so we can have a free country… they’re why we are here today,” she said. “So many people have died or been injured for us, so for me, it’s an honor to work here and to be able to represent this for them.”
Jarrell was nominated for the award by a coworker, which also surprised her.
“That means the world to know that somebody is actually paying attention to you, and it let me know what I do makes a difference and that I do a good job,” she said. Still, she said, she doesn’t “feel like I did anything special.”
Jarrell’s anonymous nominator said she always shows “great dedication and an excellent work ethic. LaRonda is a standout performer and works diligently to provide excellent care for our veterans. She is reliable and can be taken for her word… if she says she will do something, it can be expected as fact.”
Continuing, Jarrell’s nominator said, she “is veteran-focused and excels at taking care of each one like they are her own family. On several occasions, she has been asked to work miracles to achieve Care in the Community authorization for urgent imaging, and she has gone above and beyond in the completion of the expedited scheduling.”
Jarrell’s supervisor, Christie Walker, described her as a “very kind” person and said she’s “always willing to help where needed. LaRonda takes great pride in her job.”