Bayhealth recently announced that Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner Suzette M. Flores, DNP, BWS, APRN, NP-C, has been named a recipient of the 2019 American Association of Nurse Practitioners Delaware State Award for Nurse Practitioner Advocate Excellence.
This prestigious award recognizes the efforts of individuals who have made a significant contribution toward increasing awareness and recognition of the nurse practitioner role.
Flores is the palliative care nurse practitioner for the Bayhealth Hospital Sussex Campus. She helps patients suffering with the pain and symptoms stemming from a serious illness. Palliative care is not hospice, nor is it end-of-life care; it’s a service that aims to help suppress a patient’s suffering and improve quality of life regardless of the stage of illness.
This award stems from Flores’ work to promote the role of nurse practitioners in Delaware, which included helping expand the Delaware Coalition of Nurse Practitioners to southern Delaware. Flores also lobbied for Senate Bill 227, which deals with insurance plans and reimbursing primary care physicians, certified nurse practitioners, physician assistants and other frontline practitioners.
“I’m so proud to help promote nurse practitioners and to help people understand what we bring to the table when caring for patients,” Flores said. She likens her role to that of a detective, stating nurse practitioners have to look at the whole patient and take their physical, spiritual, financial and emotional needs into account when providing care. “We have to figure out what’s impacting the illness to truly put together a care plan that meets all of their needs. If we don’t understand everything causing an illness, the issue will continue to happen and the patient will remain ill,” she said.