Black History Month Spotlight: Frankie Bell
Nurse Professional Development Specialist Frankie Bell, DNP, RN, NPD-BC, is a dedicated professional who has earned the highest practice degree in nursing — doctorate in nursing practice (DNP). She shares her expertise by working as a unit-based educator responsible for coordinating and implementing educational activities to meet assessed educational needs. She also coaches and mentors nurses.
As we celebrate Black History Month, Bayhealth is highlighting some of our team members in a series called “Rising Above.” Read their inspiring stories of service and affecting change in our community and workplace on Bayhealth’s social media pages.
Bell represents an important aspect of positive change. As a Black woman in the position of nurse professional development specialist, she mentors other nurses and inspires others to recognize that nursing is a diverse field with a multitude of opportunities.
Bell believes addressing disparities in the quality of care requires a multifaceted approach. It includes an increase in regulatory vigilance, recruiting more providers from diverse backgrounds and new initiatives to weave cultural competence in all aspects of training and education. In her position as an educator, she helps to dispel some of the stereotypes and biases around people of color, while emphasizing the importance of providing patient-centered, culturally competent care.
Like many of our team members highlighted in the series, Bell goes above and beyond not only at Bayhealth but out in the community. She belongs to many local and national nursing organizations — one being The National Black Nurses Association which is a phenomenal organization that promotes change through research and legislation. Another is DNPs of Color, which provides exciting opportunities for mentorship and camaraderie. It provides a space where DNPs of Color can be seen and support one another in an environment where they are often overlooked.
Bell wants to encourage organizations to actively demonstrate diversity and inclusivity. She also feels it is time to stop using sayings like, ‘I don’t see color.’
“When someone states they don’t see color, it feels like they are saying ‘I don’t see you.’ We need to be okay with recognizing and acknowledging that we are all beautifully different,” Bell says.
“The message to my peers about the importance of understanding my culture is that everyone wants to be understood,” says Bell. “Take the time to learn about your fellow man. The most effective way to do that is to first recognize that we are all human beings first and foremost. Each of us has our different experiences that have shaped us. It is not fair or beneficial to paint everyone with the same brush. Taking the time to the time to see Black people as human beings with feelings, fears and concerns is crucial. Dispel any fears and ask questions to bridge the gap of understanding.”
This is the last in our collection of stories celebrating Black History Month. We hope you have enjoyed reading and hearing them as much as we have enjoyed creating and sharing them.
Learn more about how we celebrate our teams at Bayhealth.org/Join and see how you can be a part of Bayhealth.