(Hinesville, GA), Since the closing of schools in March due to COVID-19, Liberty County School System Lead Nurse, Kimberly Halverson, has worked around the clock to assist district and school leaders with challenges caused by the pandemic.
Her medical knowledge and display of confidence have helped many stakeholders remain calm in the face of this storm. In addition to overseeing school health programs and serving as the supervisor for thirteen school nurses, Halverson works with the Liberty County Health Department to coordinate school flu vaccinations, scoliosis screenings and immunization audits. Angela Hartley, RN and County Nurse Manager with the Liberty County Health Department stated, “Kimberly Halverson consults regularly with us on matters that concern Liberty County students. We work well as partners to help the students.”
Halverson also partners with Liberty Regional Medical Center to conduct Stop the Bleed training for school nurses and staff members. LCSS Executive Director for Student Services, Dr. Kathy Moody, stated, “Nurse Halverson’s involvement in the Liberty County community does not stop at the doorsteps of the schools.” In January 2019, Halverson formed a partnership with WomenHeart Hinesville and the City of Hinesville for the purpose of increasing community awareness of heart health. Group members completed many community service events prior to being halted by COVID in March.
Halverson and members of WomenHeart, including Sandy Wells, a cardiac rehab nurse at Liberty Regional Medical Center, conducted community “Water Drives” in May and July of 2019 to provide bottled water for elementary and middle school field days and for the Bradwell Institute Band Camp. Halverson volunteered at the WomenHeart 5K Run at Bryant Commons, Do Your Part for Your Heart, in May 2019 and at the City of Hinesville 5K Monster Mash Dash with WomenHeart in October 2019. She served as a judge for WomenHeart Infographics Challenge at Liberty Regional Medical Center in January 2020 to promote awareness of heart disease in pregnancy.
When asked about Nurse Halverson’s involvement with the community, Wells stated, “Kimberly Halverson is an amazing person with a heart of gold. She is the type of person who goes above and beyond, not only for the students under her care, but for the community at large. Kim has been an integral part of WomenHeart Hinesville. Our goal has been to provide education on how to live a heart healthy life and to provide support for people trying to make healthy lifestyle changes. Without Kim, we would not have had the success we have had in this community. From her organizational skills, computer skills, positive outlook and creative thinking, Kim brings an invaluable component to our steering committee. Kim has volunteered countless hours to improve the health of our community. We are lucky to have someone of Kim’s caliber leading our school nurses.”
Halverson has remained extremely devoted to students and families during the COVID crisis. She assisted with meal distributions from March through May to help make sure students received meals on a regular basis. She has served as a mentor to one of the Bradwell Institute REACH Scholars for over two years and most recently began serving as an Assistant Volleyball Coach at BI (unpaid volunteer position). As a member of the National Association of School Nurses (NASN), Halverson receives twenty-five, free VSP Sight for Students gift cards. She donates the gift cards to families of underprivileged children to cover the cost of an eye exam and new pair of glasses.
Halverson coordinates blood drives at the Board of Education with the Red Cross and serves on the Liberty County College and Career Academy Advisory Committee for Health Sciences. Although LCSS students will begin virtual learning on August 13, Nurse Halverson will continue preparing for their return to the school sites when district leaders feel it is safe. Following guidance from the Department of Public Health (DPH) and the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the Lead Nurse will plan for school nurse clinic procedures, staff and student daily health screenings, and will continue educating students and staff on the prevention of COVID.
Halverson’s 30 years’ experience as a registered nurse and her credible reputation with district and community stakeholders has made her the school system’s own ESSENTIAL HERO.