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Maryanne Dorais

2014 CRNBC Nursing Excellence Award recipient

Excellence in Nursing Practice

Patient Care Co-ordinator – Endoscopy
Interior Health, Royal Inland Hospital

Nurses working in the specialty of endoscopy must feel at home with technology and always take best practices in nursing to heart. With a career devoted to nursing in a wide range of areas, Maryanne Dorais has won awards for her nursing work in the field of gastroenterology; she is known nationwide as a top expert in endoscopy who has helped train nurses to be the best they can be.

After working many years as a Practice Care Coordinator at Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops, focusing on intensive care, Maryanne changed her focus to endoscopy. Since then, she has become known as a transformational leader with a passion for the specialty. “She encourages nurses to be accountable and responsible and to see endoscopy from a holistic health perspective,” says registered nurse Suzette Lloyd. “She believes all nurses in this field must be accountable for understanding the products used, the biology in which we work and how research can be used for helping patients.

“She reminds them that there is always something to learn within this nursing field — and whether through reading current literature, exploring standards of practice through journals or observing front-line practice, she has become the go-to expert in this area,” Lloyd adds.

Maryanne can always be counted on for excellent clinical decision-making, whether on the ward or during meetings with other health staff. Gastroenterologists, like other specialists, have a tremendous caseload and cannot always look at the whole picture. Maryanne was always effective at giving doctors the information they needed. At times when doctors wanted to push the envelope for patient care, she always stood her ground, advocating for nurses and patients alike, making safety her number-one priority.

Other nurses feel confident in Maryanne’s thoughtful approach in a high-pressure environment. “She knows which patients can wait until the end of the day, or who needs to be treated immediately,” says Dr. Twila Burgmann, Head of Medicine at Royal Inland Hospital. “Often, she has already made preliminary arrangements based on her knowledge of the case, to accommodate them better… I remember that as a new doctor, I would hear her pose a question about a possible course of action with a patient and learned to listen and value her input.”

Recognizing the technical nature of her work, Maryanne, made sure to keep up to date on the latest equipment through conferences and national events, making sure to share that information widely with the nurses on her ward. On her own time, she helps new endoscopy nurses study for the GI Nursing exams — helping them to achieve an excellent pass rate. That enthusiasm for sharing what she knew over 20 years of specialization didn’t stop after an initial orientation; she helped nurses to develop their full potential in advancing their nursing careers long-term.

Going beyond her daily work requirements, Maryanne has been part of the National Nursing Association, representing GI nursing. She was the focus leader in the Education Department, representing new policies, procedures and nursing standards. “She is not only a great educator, but a great public speaker,” notes Nurse Lori Taylor. “With her dedication to bring seminars and teaching forums to our region, we all benefited. Thanks to all of her hard work, every nurse in our unit is GI-certified.”

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