Nurses played a critical role in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and Kerry Jeanice, of Marrero, La., was no exception.
Thousands of people across the state of Louisiana were struggling to fend off flood-related diseases. Over a 15-day period, Jeanice was one of the key point nurses who coordinated West Jefferson Medical Center’s vaccination efforts with the Federal Disaster Medical Assistance Team unit that was housed outside the hospital facility.
Jeanice organized and ran vaccination clinics on the street in tents and worked closely with the 82nd Airborne and commanders of DMAT from around the nation. Jeanice played a role in administering 40,000 vaccines in New Orleans following Katrina.
"Kerry is the type of nurse who not only impacts our community from inside the hospital, but also every time he steps outside of it," says Rosalind Albarado, the clinical manager who nominated Jeanice. "He is a consummate professional and a team player who truly makes a difference."
“My instructors gave me one motto that has shaped everything I have done in nursing: ‘Do the right thing for the patient every time, and you will always come out on top.’” – Kerry Jeanice
In addition to delivering vaccinations to those in need, Jeanice was asked by the Jefferson parish president to assist 60 retirement home residents who were abandoned in the aftermath. Jeanice provided much needed care, food, water and medication to the residents until other resources arrived.
Additionally, in 2005, the governor appointed Jeanice to the Emergency Medical Services for Children Council for Louisiana. He worked closely with various institutions, EMS services and programs to serve children in the community.