South Georgia Medical Center will honor its employees in a variety of ways during National Hospital Week which begins Sunday, May 8, and runs through May 14.The hospital kicked-off its celebration a little early with the announcement of its Excellence in Nursing Award winners on Wednesday, May 4.“For the past five years, healthcare providers in the Valdosta area have come together to honor the best-of-the-best in each of our organizations,” explained SGMC Chief Nursing Officer Ken Kiser. “These nurses are credited with making significant contributions that enhance the care given to our patients.”From SGMC, the following nurses were recognized. Jennifer Belcher, RN; Courtlain Carter, RN; Cindy Cooper, RN; Vivian Davis, RN; Kay Fielding, RN; Sandra Futch, RN; Theresa Hart, RN; Mary Jackson, RN; Idella Jenkins, RN; Teresa Padgett, RN; Beth Thomas, RN; Courtney Warren, RN and Victoria Wright, RN.The Lowndes County Partnership Health Center recognized SGMC’s Administrative Director of Cardiovascular Services, Laura Fiveash, RN, MBA, for outstanding nursing leadership in a volunteer role. Cardiac Rehab’s Mary Chitwood, RN, was honored with the Gold Standard for Nursing Award which will be named in her honor. The SGMC award will be available to nurses with more than twenty years of service who have announced their retirement and have demonstrated outstanding contributions to nursing during their career.Beginning Monday, May 9, SGMC will celebrate National Hospital Week with a series of activities for employees, volunteers and affiliated physicians. Community Relations Director Laura Love reports that during the week, administrators and managers will serve employees doughnuts and coffee, host an old-fashioned ice cream social and provide an outdoor barbeque. On Friday, SGMC will host t-shirt day allowing employees to wear Hospital Week t-shirts in the department’s color of choice. Physicians will also receive t-shirts and are invited to participate. Prize raffles will also be held.Hospital Administrator Randy Sauls said, “Our workforce is undeniably one of the most committed and patient-focused groups you’ll find. Our affiliated physicians and employees provide selfless service and tireless dedication to the community. It is a pleasure to honor and recognize each of them this week.”SGMC is the largest non-governmental employer in the region with the largest economic impact, exceeding $601 million annually. The Employee Activities planned the week-long schedule of events.