HEALTHCARE HEROES -- Finalist Spotlight -- Tracy Hagood Friday February 7, 2014 Tracy Hagood, St. Elizabeth Ft. Thomas bedside nurse at the Transitional Care Unit, communicates and translates treatment from doctors and other caregivers into terms that patients and family members can easily understand. According to her supervisor, “Tracy Hagood is the most amazing nurse I have ever worked with. She surpasses all expectations of excellence and her ability to share her nursing passion with others is contagious. She believes in serving others and acts on her belief. Not only does she possess vision, but she also has determination and passion to make a vision a reality.” Ms. Hagood’s talents reach far beyond the walls of St. Elizabeth. She also chairs the Community Outreach Committee of the Unit Based Council at St. Elizabeth Ft. Thomas and volunteers at a local church food pantry, serving approximately 600-700 Campbell County families each month. Communicating the need of these families to her co-workers, her unit decided to get together and partner with St. Paul’s Episcopal Church to volunteer and help support the pantry by collecting needed items, with Tracy arranging a drive for personal care items and clothing. As word spread throughout the hospital other departments and nursing students jumped on board. But, it didn’t stop there. When the holidays came, Tracy’s unit was asked to assist several families in need. Some were patients; some were employees; and some were identified from the pantry. As a result, Tracy created the Angel Tree. A tree placed in the cafeteria and decorated with 100 angel ornaments noting needed items. Eventually, she established Lizzies’s Closet, containing donated clothing for any patient in need. Not stopping there, after a few months passed, Tracy had another idea. She discovered many of the folks who accessed the pantry had health needs and most of the volunteers were nurses. A light bulb went off and her vision was born when Tracy helped establish a free health-screening mission at St. Paul’s in conjunction with the pantry. After several brainstorming sessions and much research, the first clients were seen at the clinic on March 13, 2013 by volunteer nurses who Tracy had arranged. Nurses at the clinic provide free blood pressure and glucose screenings, health counseling, and other basic health-related services. She has orchestrated several personal care item drives, clothing drives, and other items to assist these families. “Tracy has established a caring presence by incorporating spirituality and prayer at the clinic. She is pursuing her certification in Parish Ministry Nursing as she continues to grow and promote the clinic. There is no stopping this amazing nurse,” her supervisor said.