CONGRATULATIONS: Unity Hospital Announces First DAISY Award Winner

Unity Hospital is proud to announce its first-ever DAISY Award winnerMarla Rodas, RN, Clinical Nurse Leader, 4400 Unit. Marla was nominated by three colleagues for her incredible clinical knowledge and intuition of patients’ needs. She has been an Oncology nurse throughout her entire nursing career. Her colleagues say she always leads by example and provides the most compassionate care.


The DAISY Foundation was founded 18 years ago by the family of J. Patrick Barnes. Patrick died at the age of 33 from complications of ITP (Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura). His family was completely awestruck by the care and compassion that they and Patrick were shown during his eight-week illness that they wanted to say THANK YOU to nurses. Patrick’s wife, Tena, developed the DAISY acronym for Diseases Attacking the Immune System.

Why Cinnamon rolls?

The reason for the cinnamon rolls is because when Pat’s family brought in cinnamon rolls for Pat to eat, he requested they bring in enough the next day for all his nurses. When DAISY began, the foundation wanted a way to celebrate teamwork and to provide the sensory trigger that reminds nurses whenever you smell the incredible aroma of a cinnamon – in the mall or airport or if they are baking with cinnamon at home – they stop for a moment and remind themselves that they are special people that are making a difference in the lives of others. 

It is so fitting that Marla is Unity’s first DAISY Award winner. As an oncology nurse, she has cared for many people with the same condition as Patrick. Below are her three nominations:

Nomination from Molly Chamberain, 4400 Unit

  • Marla exhibits the core values that every nurse should strive to achieve. As a nurse and a clinical nurse leader, Marla goes above and beyond what is asked of her; she is dependable, compassionate, resourceful, and unbiased as a leader. I feel truly blessed to be able to work beside her, and I can only hope to hold the respect and the knowledge which she possesses. When asked to think of, or describe one specific situation which deems her worthy of acknowledgment, I find it difficult, as she exhibits these actions daily. A patient once told me that “perhaps no worker can impact the hospital stay more than “the” nurse”; those words could not be more true, and Marla certainly has a positive impact for every patient and every visitor that steps foot onto 4400.

Nomination from Linda Hagan, Nurse Educator

  • Marla is the CNL of 4400 Oncology unit. She is an excellent leader, and her staff value her. Marla is also an EXCELLENT nurse, who takes pride in caring for her patients. Her standards are high, and she expects her staff to hold the same standards. I would not hesitate to have Marla take care of me.

Nomination from Dr. Jeff Allen:

  • Marla Rodas has demonstrated the DAISY award criteria by advocating for patients who are critically ill with cancer and other serious life threatening illnesses. She is able to connect with patients and their families, quickly gaining trust by showing compassion and providing outstanding nursing care! Marla has a great fund of medical knowledge combined with nursing intuition, which allows her to anticipate patient needs and deliver the appropriate care for her patients. Additionally, Marla is extremely well respected by the nurses who work for her on the 4400 floor. She has innate leadership skills which foster an environment attracting outstanding nurses to work for her team. Marla is also very involved with each patient’s care and often is seen assisting her nurses and aides in the daily care of patients. From a physician perspective, Marla has gained the trust and respect of her physician and APP colleagues who depend on her ability to triage and assess patients. In plain words; if Marla is worried about a patient’s clinical situation or has a recommendation for their care – we listen and we act!!

RRH is proud to have Marla on our team! Thank you for all that you do!