Kimberly Holmes, MSN, RN, PCCN, of Dover was recently named Stroke Center Coordinator for Bayhealth Medical Center. Holmes previously served for five years as Clinical Practice Leader of Bayhealth’s Cardiac Cath Lab and also worked as a staff nurse on the IMC at Kent General Hospital.
“I was attracted to this position because of the strong role it has within the community in promoting preventive health education in regards to stroke risk factors,” she said. “Cardiovascular Disease encompasses both stroke and heart attack – ischemic stroke is a clot in the brain, and a heart attack is a clot in the heart. The risks factors for both are very similar, and it’s very important to make the communities we serve aware of their risk factors.”
Holmes’ first priority will be to secure Milford Memorial Hospital’s designation as a Primary Stroke Center, a designation already held by Kent General Hospital. The Stroke Center is a virtual unit in nature, with Kent General’s Intensive Care Unit, Intermediate Care Unit and the 3 East Medical-Surgical Unit as designated stroke floors. Milford Memorial’s Intensive Care Unit, Intermediate Care Unit and 2 West are designated stroke floors. The staff members on these designated floors have been specially trained on how to care for stroke patients.
“Stroke patients require very individualized care, as they need frequent neurological assessment to look for changes in clinical status. In order to provide optimal care, continuous quality improvement is critical to the success of stroke centers,” Holmes said. “Our primary goal is to achieve better clinical outcomes for our patients by utilizing the latest in advances in evidence-based practice.”
The care patients receive is coordinated by a multidisciplinary team which includes staff from EMS, the Emergency Department, Pharmacy, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Rehabilitation and Speech Therapy. Bayhealth Neurologist Joel Rutenberg, MD, serves as Medical Director of Bayhealth’s Stroke Center and Shannon Wilcutts, RN, is the Stroke Registrar.
Holmes received her BSN and MSN, both in Nursing, from Delaware State University. She received a post-master’s certification as an Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist from the University of Delaware. She is a founder and co-chair of Bayhealth’s Diversity Committee and also serves on Bayhealth’s CPR Committee, Professional Practice, Cardiovascular Marketing Work Group and Cardiovascular Operations Work Group.
She is very active in the community, serving as Passion Committee Chair for the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women from 2011 to 2012. In this role, she serves as an ambassador in the community to promote awareness of risk factors and prevention of heart disease and stroke. She is also a member of the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association and serves as a Heart Walk Co-Captain for Kent General.
She and her husband have a seven-year-old son, who loves sports and spending time at the beach. A Dover-area native, Holmes was born at Milford Memorial and grew up in Frederica, attending Lake Forest High School. Since she is focused on making the community aware of the risk factors for stroke, Holmes would be happy to speak at organizations, churches or other events. For information, please call her at (302) 744-6638.