Two Bay Area Hospital Nurses were honored at the 7th Annual March of Dimes Nurse of the Year Awards on June 2. A total of 570 nurses from Oregon and Southwest Washington were nominated, but just 17 were named Nurse of the Year. Bay Area Hospital’s Amy Baxter and Kristy Blair won top honors, while 18 other BAH nurses claimed nominations.

Amy Baxter BSN, RN, TCRN won Nurse of the Year in the Emergency category, which includes ER, flight, ambulance, pre-hospital, telephone triage and Pediatric ER. Baxter is a long time Bay Area Hospital employee and has consistently demonstrates her commitment to excellent care. She joined Bay Area Hospital in 1998 working in Registration, and then worked as a Unit Secretary and Certified Nursing Assistant before becoming a Registered Nurse. This year, she also obtained her specialty certification as a Trauma Certified Registered Nurse.

Kristy Blair MSN, RN, WCC won Nurse of the Year in the Hospice, Home Health, Long Term Care, Rehab and Palliative Care category.  This category includes nursing in inpatient/outpatient hospice settings and nursing in all home health settings, long term acute care hospitals, skilled nursing facilities and acute rehabilitation long term facilities. Blair has been a Bay Area Hospital employee for more than 20 years and serves as the Home Health Clinical Manager.

All of this year’s Nurse of the Year winners were honored at a breakfast fundraiser at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. At that event more than $95,000 was raised for the Oregon chapter of March of Dimes. The group’s mission is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. Event organizers say honoring excellent nurses helps support this mission by “celebrating the profession, and creating awareness of the strides made in this growing field.” For more information contact Barbara Bauder at (541) 269-8543 or email her at