Borough Park

Maimonides ‘Nurse for a Day’ event celebrates its ninth year

Community leaders, elected officials and local residents walk in the shoes of healthcare’s frontline workers

June 20, 2024 Wayne Daren Schneiderman
Several nurses for a day. Brooklyn Eagle photos by Wayne Daren Schneiderman
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BOROUGH PARK — Maimonides Health recently hosted its ninth annual Nurse for a Day event in honor of National Nurses Month. 

Its purpose: to provide participants, including local elected officials and community leaders, a hands-on, up close and personal opportunity to understand the essential services provided by frontline healthcare workers who are often unsung heroes.

Todd W. Fliedner, executive director of the Bay Ridge Center.
Todd W. Fliedner, executive director of the Bay Ridge Center.

The honorary nurses who participated in the event paired with Maimonides registered nurses to get a glimpse into their day-to-day activities and responsibilities. 

The event concluded with a reception where Maimonides leaders presented a participation award to each of the 34 honorees.

Sandy the Seagull, mascot for the Brooklyn Cyclones, along with nurses for a day and Maimonides staff.
Sandy the Seagull, mascot for the Brooklyn Cyclones, along with nurses for a day and Maimonides staff.

This year’s group of honorary nurses included representatives from the mayor’s office, the NYC Department of Education, the New York City Police Department and many more civic, religious and community organizations, along with executive and clinical leaders from Maimonides Health.

Ken Gibbs, CEO and president of Maimonides Health, told the Brooklyn Eagle that no hospital can be better than its nurses.

Assistant Chief Charles McEvoy being presented with an honorary nurse certificate.
Assistant Chief Charles McEvoy being presented with an honorary nurse certificate.

“They are part of a community,” said Gibbs. “This day succeeded in connecting our community with our nurses. It was a truly unique experience. Depending on the unit, one may have seen a radiology procedure, been part of observing behavioral health care or even witnessed a cesarean section. We were able to show a broad array of what services are provided here.” 

Judy Bachman, COO at Maimonides Health, explained, “It’s very exciting for me, as a nurse, to be part of something like this.”

Judy Bachman, executive vice president and COO of Maimonides.
Judy Bachman, executive vice president and COO of Maimonides.

“The energy in this room today was unbelievable,” Bachman said, “To see how much enjoyment people got out of the day — both the nursing staff that did it and the people that came in from the community to experience it — is truly amazing. Nurses are the backbone of this organization.”

Mayor Adams’ Chief of Staff Camille Joseph Varlack recalled that she couldn’t say yes fast enough when asked to be a nurse for a day.

“For me, nursing is very personal,” Varlack said. “My mother emigrated here when I was a child, and I remember her going to nursing school and working in hospitals. Nurses are everything. It’s so great that today, we are shining the light on them. They are the frontline workers for healthcare.” 

Douglas Jablon, special assistant to the president at Maimonides Medical Center and Rev. Msgr. Joseph Grimaldi.
Douglas Jablon, special assistant to the president at Maimonides Medical Center and Rev. Msgr. Joseph Grimaldi.

Todd W. Fliedner, executive director of the Bay Ridge Center, also participated in the event. 

“I’ve never had an experience like this before,” he said. “It was great being paired with an actual nurse and visiting several of the patients she is currently seeing. The patient’s history was explained, why they are here, etc., and I just took it all in.” 

Assistant Chief Charles McEvoy, commanding officer of Patrol Borough Brooklyn South, called the nurse for a day experience “tremendous and fulfilling.”

Kenneth Gibbs, president and CEO of Maimonides Medical Center, receiving his honorary nurse award.
Kenneth Gibbs, president and CEO of Maimonides Medical Center, receiving his honorary nurse award.

“It was an absolute privilege to be a part of,” McEvoy said. “I worked for about two hours with a wonderful and caring nurse named Allison. I received some significant insight into what she does. I now have a greater appreciation for the nursing profession as a whole.”


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