UF Health Jacksonville receives prestigious Gold Beacon Award for Excellence

Published: March 31, 2023

UF Health Jacksonville’s medical intensive care unit, or MICU, has been honored with the prestigious Gold Beacon Award for Excellence by the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, a significant milestone that reinforces the organization’s dedication to exceptional patient care.

Only 20 hospital units in Florida received the Gold designation for a specific unit, and only two, including UF Health Jacksonville, received the Gold Award for MICU care.

The Beacon Award for Excellence recognizes unit caregivers who successfully improve patient outcomes and align practices with AACN’s six Healthy Work Environment Standards. Units that achieve this three-year, three-level award with gold, silver or bronze designations meet national criteria consistent with the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program, the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award and the National Quality Healthcare Award.


“Our nurses are at the center of the outstanding care we offer patients and their families,” said Russ Armistead, CEO of UF Health Jacksonville. “We are so proud of this Gold designation for our MICU. Everyone here, not only our nurses but our physicians and every staff member who supports them, shares a part in this due to their dedication to excellence.”


The gold-level Beacon Award for Excellence earned by UF Health Jacksonville signifies an effective and systematic approach to policies, procedures and processes that include engagement of staff and key stakeholders; fact-based evaluation strategies for continuous process improvement; and performance measures that meet or exceed relevant benchmarks.


“The nurses and support staff in our MICU are consistently exceeding high standards and are always raising the bar, so this award is well-deserved,” said Patrice Jones, DNP, RN, vice president and chief nursing officer for UF Health Jacksonville. “Along with our other leaders, I am so proud of every one of our nurses, in every unit, because they come to work with one goal in mind ? to provide our patients with the most compassionate, professional service possible.”


AACN President Amanda Bettencourt, PhD, APRN, CCRN-K, ACCNS-P, applauds the commitment of the caregivers at UF Health Jacksonville for working together to meet and exceed the high standards set forth by the Beacon Award for Excellence, and says these dedicated health care professionals join other members of our exceptional community of nurses, who set the standard for optimal patient care.


“The Beacon Award for Excellence is a testament to a team’s commitment to providing safe, patient-centered and evidence-based care to patients and families. Creating healthy and supportive work environments empowers nurses and other team members to make their optimal contribution,” said Bettencourt. “Achieving this award is an honor that brings such joy to those who have worked so hard to achieve excellence in patient care and positive patient outcomes.”


UF Health Jacksonville’s Gold Award is valid until March 2026. The AACN will officially present it at the National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition in Philadelphia in May. 

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