Christie Gallardo Lezada

Christie has been a Clinical Nurse on Unit 6-3 for 20 years.  She chose Duke for its cutting-edge research and innovations that begin at the bedside.  A valuable Preceptor and Charge Nurse, she is a positive role model for influencing change on the unit.  Christie advocates for the prevention and care of post-op delirium.  And, she models exemplary care at the bedside.  She shared about a patient experiencing delirium whose partner of 60 years never left the hospital.  However, the family member recognized the love and compassionate care that Christie provided and, for the first time, felt safe going home to care for personal needs.


This standout nominee is a great role model for the staff on our unit.  She is a firm believer in bedside reporting and understands that it is the most effective way to care for our patients.  She consistently documents bedside reporting in the electronic health record.  She gently reminds staff to document bedside reporting for every hand-off.  Her effective communication skills and ability to hold her peers accountable is a great representation of a real nurse leader.  In addition, this nominee truly values our diverse patient population.  She was assigned to a patient who didn’t speak English.  Using her superb critical thinking skills, she was able to identify that this patient was displaying symptoms of alcohol withdrawal.  She immediately requested assistance from our Spanish interpreter and confirmed that the patient was abusing alcohol.  The alcohol withdrawal pathway was immediately initiated and she saved this patient from detrimental consequences of alcohol withdrawal.


Her professionalism is ever present; she grounds herself with excellence in our hospital and community.  As a member of the Philippine Nurses Association of North Carolina, this nominee is proud of her heritage and adds to our diverse nursing team.  She informs other Filipino nurses at our facility about opportunities to support their nation.  For example, several other nurses have joined the same Filipino nurses’ association.  She also supports Project Stethoscope, which supplies stethoscopes to nurses in the Philippines.  As a long-term employee of 20 years, she has an impact on nurse retention for our unit.  She frequently checks-in with other nurses to assess their desire for growth and development.  Her influence has led many of our new graduate nurses to get involved with a hospital committee early in their nursing career.  As a BSN-prepared nurse, she encourages other nurses to use our tuition reimbursement program for academic advancement.  She is passionate about maintaining our Magnet status by increasing the BSN workforce.


This candidate has worked as a Skin Care Champion for many years.  She has exceptional assessment skills for identifying pressure ulcer trends.  She helps our unit with developing strategies to better serve our patients with skin care needs.  Even though she is a night-shift nurse, she will come to work on her days off to performs skin audits.  During her audits, she provides staff with one-on-one coaching to improve their documentation in order to meet Joint Commission requirements.  She has collaborated with other Skin Care Champions to create and present an evidence-based poster about preventing device-related pressure injuries.  In addition, she created a visual reminder card for staff to turn patients every two hours.  Her contributions have helped our unit significantly reduce hospital-acquired pressure injuries.  In addition, she created an abstract that was featured in our health system’s newsletter.


This nominee is known by her peers for her reliability.  She is a valuable Preceptor and Charge Nurse.  She has precepted new graduates, experienced nurses, Nursing Assistants, traveler RNs, and nursing students.  She is always available to help onboard new staff, and they all have positive feedback about her competence and relational abilities.  Her leadership is transformational because she creates a trusting environment for both new and experienced nurses.  People rely on her expertise and know that she is giving them the “correct” information.  She is a great resource for other units and values the concept of team learning.  Other units frequently call on her to troubleshoot or change wound-vacs.  During a weekend shift, the wound care nurse was not available; since this nominee received extra training on wound-vacs, she was able to help our sister unit with resolving a wound-vac malfunction.  She quickly identified that the disc needed to be replaced, and no one was familiar with this process.


This nominee strives to keep our patients safe, as she is part of the unit’s Shared Governance Team.  She performs Safety Education Huddles and educates staff on any new policy changes.  She produced an educational packet on skin moisture management and created a work environment that supports “zero use of diapers.”  Her initiatives have changed our unit’s practice to eliminate the use of diapers for all patients.  She is a positive role model with influencing change on our unit.  She educates staff on the importance of change and gets their “buy-in” for providing the best care to our patients.  Delirium is a growing concern for elderly post-op patients.  This candidate advocates for the prevention and care of post-op delirium.  She has attended additional classes to understand the specific care needed for these patients.  She educates other staff about the correct approach and how to effectively communicate to delirious patients.  In additions, she encourages other staff in reducing delirium complications through early mobility, diversion techniques, medication review and one-to-one supervision.


This nominee was recognized for extraordinary teamwork during a hectic shift with multiple rapid responses.  Her positive attitude ultimately led to better teamwork and patient outcomes that night.

FON Photos edited x Lezada

Christie Gallardo Lezada


Clinical Nurse II

General Surgical Unit 6-3

Duke Regional Hospital


Duke Regional Hospital Medical Staff Award for Excellence in Nursing Practice



Friends of Nursing Gala 2021

Friends of Nursing Gala 2021

Friends of Nursing Gala 2021