WashU Nephrology is so proud of Fabrienne (Fae) Harper, BSN, RN, a finalist for the 13th Annual Excellence in Nursing Awards, which celebrate nurses from institutions across the St. Louis region for their selfless care, compassion and service.
“Honoring the Heart of Health Care” was the theme of this year’s event, hosted by St. Louis Magazine and presented by BJC HealthCare and Goldfarb School of Nursing at Barnes-Jewish College.
Mrs. Harper, Clinical Nurse Coordinator of our Renal Outpatient Office, was a finalist in the Acute Care/Family Practice/General Medicine category, along with Veronica Murray (Christian Hospital) and the ultimate winner, Mary Joe Pierson (Barnes-Jewish Hospital).
“I really wished I could have won the award – not for myself, but for our division,” says Harper. “I think we have so many good doctors who go way beyond excellence with the care they provide. They make my job easy!”
Harper obtained her nursing degree from St. Louis Community College, after which she went on to earn her BSN from Western Governors University. She has been working with hemodialysis patients for over 20 years.
She says, “I feel so privileged to work in a field that grants me the opportunity to help patients manage their health. I am passionate about the care I provide, realizing that sometimes one small conversation can make a big difference with the quality of their life. Whether it is setting up infusions, providing education, medication management or returning a phone call about lab work, it can possibly provide a big step in increasing the life of our patients.”
Anitha Vijayan, MD, FASN, Professor of Medicine, nominated Harper for the nursing award. “Fae’s dedication to patient care, her wonderful work ethic, her collegiality with all the team members, have contributed significantly to the mission of the Division of Nephrology. Our mission is to provide quality care for patients with chronic kidney disease and provide appropriate support and education in preparation for kidney transplant and dialysis. Fae leads this effort in our clinic and sets the example for others to follow.”
Harper oversees end-stage kidney disease education classes for the patients and ensures active participation from social workers, physicians and dietitians. “She follows up with patients to see if they need additional information and helps them navigate websites (such as NKF) and find other resources,” says Dr. Vijayan. “Patients with kidney disease in the city are disproportionately of the lower socioeconomic status and people of color. They need help with transportation, medications, insurance coverage, etc. Fae is always a champion for these patients.”
Watch the virtual awards reception video, which features Harper talking about educating and preparing a patient to accept dialysis (~9:05 minutes into the video).
Other sponsors of the St. Louis Magazine 2022 Excellence in Nursing Awards include SSM Health (Gold Sponsor) and Saint Louis University Trudy Busch Valentine School of Nursing (Silver Sponsor).