Readers of the Valley Morning Star named Penny Kleeman, RN, third-floor charge nurse at the 112-bed Harlingen (Texas) Medical Center, Best of the Best Nurse in 2013.
Kleeman has been a nurse for 40 years, the past 11 spent at HMC. “I started here when the hospital opened its doors in 2002 as a staff nurse,” Kleeman said in a news release. “I have worked with many patients throughout the years, and my craft is something that I love, and it offers me a rewarding career. In addition, the love of my craft and the dedication to my work has afforded me the opportunity to grow into a supervisory role within Harlingen Medical Center.”
“We are very proud of the recognition that Penny has garnered with the Valley Morning Star’s Reader’s Choice Award Best Nurse,” Brenda Ivory, CEO at HMC, said in the release. “She brings genuine warmth to her interactions with our patients. She is highly experienced and skilled in nursing. She brings a wealth of experience, which easily translates into exceptional care and experiences for our patients.”
Kleeman said she likes to walk into each patient’s room with a smile because that makes a difference to the patients, their families and to her. “I very much enjoy my interactions with patients, because I am able to address their medical needs and I make time to give them the attention and respect all patients deserve,” she said. “Patients want to have someone listen to them and that is part of the delivery of care I afford them. I am a nurse. That is part of what I do.”
Kleeman’s career has taken her to various clinical settings, including a small hospital, an inner-city hospital, a health clinic, the VA, a school nurse’s office and an inpatient rehab hospital before joining HMC.
“Working in nursing has been an incredible experience,” Kleeman said. “It has been a wonderful opportunity to be of service to others during an often difficult time in their lives.”
Along with Kleeman’s award, HMC won the Valley Morning Star’s Reader’s Choice Award for Best Hospital in 2013.