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Service and Leadership Earn Grace Henson Our March Care Award

Charity Gallardo - Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Grace Henson, director of nursing at Irvine’s Regents Point/Windcrest senior living community, is our March recipient of Fairhaven’s Oliver Halsell Care Award.

The Mission Viejo resident has a unique way of describing what it means to care. She believes it can’t be described. “It comes from the heart,” she says. It is this heart for caring that helped her touch the lives of those she cares for and manages at Regents Point/Windcrest.

“During her more than 30 years as a nurse, Grace has provided exceptional care for her patients and inspired countless others to follow her example,” said Marla Noel, president of Fairhaven. “She epitomizes what it means to be both an outstanding caregiver and manager.”

As director of nursing, Henson is responsible for the medical care of Regents Point/Windcrest’s skilled nursing facility. This includes managing a staff of 22 licensed nurses and 30 CNA’s. In this position, Henson has dedicated herself to ensuring the patient remains at the center of all decision making. With her leadership, Regents Point/Windcrest has been listed in the top 10 percent of nursing facilities in the State of California by Consumer Reports’ Nursing Home Quality Monitor. Regents Point/Windcrest also offers independent living, assisted living, memory care and home care.

“When I accepted this position, I made a commitment to ensure that my staff is dedicated to doing four things: use their critical thinking, be professional, be compassionate and be ethical at all times,” says Henson. “We must never forget that the patient is the only reason we’re here.”

Henson’s successes as director of nursing are the culmination of a journey spanning more than three decades and dating back to her arrival in the United States from her native Philippines in 1979. During her first 15 years as a nurse, she worked full time in hospitals, while picking up extra shifts in her spare time at a nursing home. It was here where she realized her true calling: Serving Orange County’s aging population.

She joined Regents Point/Windcrest in 1995, as nursing director and has picked up several honors along the way, including an Award for Nursing Excellence by the U.S. ElderCare, Inc. as well as being named one of the Top 10 Outstanding Women in the Nation for her work with the Filipino community.

In addition to her passion for nursing, the recently empty-nested wife and mother of three enjoys ballroom dancing and caring for her three Pomeranians, facing every new day with boundless joy and energy.

“Every day is a new life, a new experience and another challenge.” she says. “I won’t let anyone steal my joy!”

She will be honored at Fairhaven’s Oliver Halsell Care Awards banquet in the fall at Fairhaven’s Mission Viejo location. For more information and to nominate a deserving candidate, click here or send us an email.

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