Comanche County Memorial Hospital has 23 nurses as March of Dimes finalists in 12 different categories this year. Melissa Alvillar, the Chief Nursing Officer at CCMH, said this is the most they’ve ever had, and it’s the most from one hospital.

The nurse of the year event happens every year to honor nurses and raise money for babies who may need to stay in a NICU and their parents. Alvillar said she’s very proud of the team.

“We’re putting out there the amazing work that we do in Southwest Oklahoma and in Lawton and putting that up against our Oklahoma City and Tulsa partners, so we’re very proud of that,” she said.

Kylee Turner works in the NICU and is one of CCMH’s 23 finalists. This is her first time being nominated.

“I just feel really honored that my staff nominated me and then making to a finalist. I didn’t expect that at all, so very excited,” Turner said.

She says teamwork is big at the hospital, and she believes it’s what helps them be such a strong unit. She’s been at the hospital for six years now and says taking care of the NICU babies who need support is a huge passion of hers.

“My favorite part is just getting to be the support system for the families,” Turner said. “This is one of the hardest times in their lives. You have this newborn you’re expecting to have a normal labor and delivery, take them home in a few days, and then if you have them prematurely, just getting to be that support for the moms and dads and then helping nurture those babies growing.”

The hospital had 96 nominations this year, which is the most in the state. Anybody who knows the nurse is allowed to nominate someone. Alvillar said most of the nominations came from their peers and others within the hospital. The hospital has finalists in categories like NICU, women’s services, and nurse practitioners, just to name a few.

“The nurses that are finalists at CCMH, they’ve been with us through COVID, and they’ve stuck it out here and stayed to take care of their community, so I’m proud of each and every one of them,” Alvillar said.

The nurses won’t find out who won until November 3rd during an event the March of Dimes puts on.

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