Health Care and Human Resources

Hospital appoints chief nursing officer

September 18, 2019
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Michelle Pena
Michelle Pena. Courtesy Mercy Health

A local hospital has a new nursing leader.

Michelle Pena takes the role for Mercy Health Saint Mary's starting Sept. 22. 

Pena began her career at Mercy Health Saint Mary’s over 25 years ago as a staff nurse in the emergency department and intensive care unit. 

Over the years, her roles have grown to include emergency department nurse educator, director of emergency services and her most recent role of clinical services director of emergency, trauma and critical care. She has also been working to prepare the hospital for to implement the Epic electronic health record, launching in early 2020. 

Pena has led a number of initiatives, including creation and implementation of a standalone emergency department and the development of transfer line services, which Mercy Health Saint Mary's said significantly improved access to its tertiary care services. Additionally, Pena served as longtime executive board member of Kent County EMS and was a member of the Kent County human trafficking medical subcommittee.

She began her career as a nurse for Sparrow Health System in Lansing. 

"Michelle is an exemplary, innovative leader dedicated to quality, safety and patient satisfaction," said Dr. Hyung Kim, president of Mercy Health Saint Mary's. "In her new role, she will continue to be an advocate for the growing nursing profession."

A graduate of Hurley School of Nursing in Flint, she earned her bachelor's degree in nursing from the University of Michigan - Flint and master's in nursing and health care management from Loyola University New Orleans.

Pena succeeds Liz Murphy, who will retire Nov. 5.

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