Michael Daly – NP-C
Nurse Practitioner – Board Certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners
story by Kelly Harley photos by Tonya Perry
In October 2016, Hurricane Matthew directly impacted Coastal Georgia. Inland counties such as Effingham County felt the effects of the powerful hurricane. Michael Daly remembers the storm very well. The board certified nurse practitioner had just started his new role at Effingham Health System (EHS), working in the hospital. He was part of the team that worked around the clock during the storm. “I had to learn things pretty quickly,” says Daly. “All of the patients that would normally go to Savannah were coming to us and we had evacuees from South Carolina here. We treated a lot of patients during the storm.” That baptism by fire was welcomed by Daly because commitment to patient care is his top priority.
The Greenville, South Carolina, native always knew he wanted to help people and nursing was a way he could do that. He received his nursing degree from Georgia South University (GSU) in Statesboro, Georgia. After school, he worked as a mental health nurse and then started working in the Effingham Hospital emergency department where he spent five years.
While working there, he went back to GSU to become a nurse practitioner. In fact, he was the first nurse practitioner hired to work in the EHS Hospitalist program, which was expanded to include advanced practitioners. This best-practice model is being implemented across the nation due to physician shortages. EHS’s redesign of its Hospitalist program, spearheaded by Dr. John Bennett, chief medical officer at EHS, is an innovative and cutting-edge approach to providing quality care.
Daly, who works alongside Dr. John Bennett, says that EHS is embracing a culture of compassion and excellence and doing so by maximizing the patient experience. One of the ways patients benefit is by seeing the same doctors. “I believe when you come to our hospital, you get more attention than you would in a bigger hospital,” says Daly. “Everyone we see is sick and needs our services. We want to give them all of the attention they deserve. We are always in the building, always making rounds and we make ourselves easily accessible to our patients.”
When a patient comes to Effingham Hospital, they are first seen in the emergency department and if necessary, will be admitted to the hospital where their care will continue. Daly says he treats patients with a variety of illnesses to include, pneumonia, respiratory issues, cardiac issues, and infections. Daly also treats patients who are in EHS’s Care Center, a 105-bed nursing home. “If one of those patients has a problem, we are able to help them. We get to know our Care Center patients very well and we form a personal relationship with them and their families,” says Daly.
“What is most rewarding about my job is I’m doing something that I have a passion for. I get to help people. I get to do it in a small community and I’m truly able to give my patients the best possible care,” says Daly. “We really do hover over our patients, but that’s not a bad thing.”