Now more than ever, Independence Blue Cross recognizes the invaluable role that nurses play in caring for our families and communities. To show our appreciation, we are honoring outstanding nurses in our region through the second annual Celebrate Caring campaign. As part of the campaign, we’re highlighting how our winners and honorees are making a difference in the community through compassion and superior care.
Kim Kristoff, a NICU nurse at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), became a nurse after realizing that a career in engineering and finance wasn’t the right fit for her.
“Something was missing. It just wasn’t fulfilling,” she said. “A few of my best friends from grade school were nurses and I always loved babies and kids, so I did some soul-searching and it led me to nursing.”
Fulfilling her Purpose
It turns out nursing was indeed the right fit. Having spent 23 years as a nurse at CHOP, Kim has excelled in all aspects of her career, including being a strong advocate for a NICU breastfeeding and pumping support program for mothers with hospitalized infants — a program she developed and continues to co-lead. Kim was also a leader in developing CHOP’s first NICU Vascular Access Team, a team of nurses who specialize in placing IV catheters and central venous lines in critically ill babies.
“Kim is always available to help other nurses and work on her days off,” said Bridget Cei, who nominated Kim for the Celebrate Caring campaign. “She constantly educates other nurses, nurse practitioners, physicians, and others to improve the care of our vulnerable patients.”
Nursing at CHOP
“One of the greatest things about working at CHOP is how much they promote innovation and evidence-based work that help babies get well,” said Kim. “It brings a smile to my face every time I see one of my former patients and their families at our reunions or in the photos and cards they share. I love working here.”