Meet Our Nurses | Baptist Health South Florida http://bapth.lt/1YzRraL
Skip Ribbon Commands Skip to main content

Meet Our Nurses

Rosario Dominguez, MSN, R.N., ACNP-BC, CCRN-E. | South Miami Hospital
Rosario Dominguez, MSN, R.N., ACNP-BC, CCRN-E. | eICU Corporate

Like so many nurses, Rosario Dominguez’s passion for the profession began in childhood. “I have always loved nursing, and I have been a nurse all my life,” she said. A native of the Philippines, Ms. Dominguez began her U.S. career at South Miami Hospital in 1996. Her critical-care nursing skills took a leap in 2005, when she became a founding member of Baptist Health’s eICU LifeGuard team, which uses two-way cameras and other electronic tools to remotely monitor every ICU patient in every Baptist Health facility, 24 hours a day.

Ms. Dominguez earned an MSN from Barry University in 2011 through the Scholars Program. “Thanks to Baptist Health’s generosity, I have been able to continue progressing in my career, and I am now a board-certified Acute Care Nurse Practitioner,” she said. She recently returned to South Miami Hospital to accept a new position in the CVCU (Cardiovascular Care Unit). Though she calls her departure from the eICU “bittersweet,” she received a memorable send-off from her colleagues, who voted her Corporate Nurse of the Year.







Rafael Rivera-Lopez, R.N. | Baptist Hospital
Rafael Rivera-Lopez, R.N. | Baptist Hospital

Rafael Rivera-Lopez began his nursing career in 1996 on a medical-surgical unit at Baptist Hospital, developing diverse nursing skills that enabled him to enter the float pool. He later took a fearless step and transferred to the Emergency Department, where he has continued to excel.

Mr. Rivera-Lopez’s dedication to his profession is evidenced by his involvement in multiple performance improvement projects and the system-wide Emergency Response Team. He is well-liked and respected by both peers and patients throughout the hospital, receiving accolades for his caring and compassion.

Mr. Rivera-Lopez exudes charisma and professionalism. With his unique combination of strong nursing skills and interpersonal skills, it is no surprise that he has been named Magnet Nurse of the Year seven times in his career.










Yara Martinez, R.N. | Doctors Hospital
Yara Martinez, R.N. | Doctors Hospital

Yara Martinez is a role model for the night shift on 3 South at Doctors Hospital. Her colleagues applaud her strong leadership skills, team spirit and dedication to her patients.

Ms. Martinez graduated from the University of Cuba Nursing Program with a B.S. in Nursing in 1997. After relocating to Miami in 1998, she completed a certification program at Miami Dade College and passed the Florida Boards in 2007. She joined the Orthopedics department at Doctors Hospital in 2007 as a Versant Resident. Dedicated to continuing her professional growth, she is currently studying for her medical-surgical certification and completing prerequisites to earn her BSN from the University of Phoenix.

A past recipient of the Nightingale Award for patient satisfaction, Ms. Martinez now adds Nurse of the Year to her accomplishments. She attributes her success to her husband, who has always supported her work and encouraged her to advance in her career.








Cristina Reyes, R.N., PCCN | South Miami Hospital
Cristina Reyes, R.N., PCCN | South Miami Hospital

Returning to the classroom in mid-career called for all of Cristina Reyes’ courage and determination. “I procrastinated for years, making excuses and telling myself I was too old, married, and had a family,” she said. “I believed going back to school would be demanding and unattainable, but I finally realized pursuing my bachelor’s in Nursing was essential to improve my critical nursing skills and open doors for professional growth.”

Ms. Reyes applied for tuition reimbursement and worked with her manager to develop a flexible work schedule that allowed time for classes. In addition to her studies, she serves on the Professional Nurses Advancement Program committee, mentoring other nurses to achieve certification in their area of practice. She earned her own certification, PCCN, in May 2013.

Continuing to aim high, Ms. Reyes already plans to pursue a master’s in Nursing once she receives her BSN from Miami Dade College in December 2013.







Shannon Tingle, R.N. | Homestead Hospital
Shannon Tingle, R.N. | Homestead Hospital

Shannon Tingle relocated to Miami from North Carolina in 2010 with nearly two decades of experience in nursing. She joined Homestead Hospital shortly after her arrival in South Florida and transferred to the OR as soon as a position was available there.

Co-workers pointed to Ms. Tingle’s exemplary attitude in naming her their Nurse of the Year, saying, “No matter what is happening, she is always smiling. She is a great team worker, she is flexible, helps others in her downtime, and comes in extra as needed. She puts her patients first. The physicians know if Shannon is the nurse in the room; she will anticipate any need that could arise.”

When Ms. Tingle comes to work, she concentrates on giving great care every day. In her personal life, she enjoys spending time with her family, shopping, and rescuing pets. She currently has three dogs, a cat and a reptile.








Karol Harrelson, R.N. | Mariners Hospital
Karol Harrelson, R.N. | Mariners Hospital

A longtime resident of the Florida Keys, Karol Harrelson has built her nursing career at Mariners Hospital, where she manages the palliative care program, participates in the cancer support group and utilizes evidence-based practice to promote research.

She has played an active role in Mariners’ implementation of No One Dies Alone (NODA), a national volunteer-centered program whose goal is to provide companionship and support for dying individuals so that no patient dies alone. Volunteer companions come to the hospital and stay with the patient, rotating through three-hour shifts, until the patient passes.

Two of her colleagues nominated Ms. Harrelson for Nurse of the Year. She was recognized for her empathy, compassion, positive attitude, willingness to help others without hesitation and leadership by example. Said one co-worker, “To me, Karol exemplifies the very mission of Baptist Health and her work ethic mirrors our guiding principle: ‘Through our compassionate healthcare services, we seek to reveal the healing presence of God.’”







Fatima Garcia, R.N.|West Kendall Baptist Hospital
Fatima Garcia, R.N.|West Kendall Baptist Hospital

Fatima Garcia was working as a respiratory therapist at a sub-acute facility when she made the decision to become a nurse. At Barry University, where she received her BSN, she was inspired and encouraged by her professors – Baptist Hospital employees – to apply for the hospital’s LEAP program in 1997.

In 2010, Ms. Garcia joined the not-yet-open West Kendall Baptist Hospital as a staff nurse in ICU, and within six months of the opening she was nominated chair of the Unit-based Practice Council and became an Advanced Nurse. She helped establish the first Virtual Journal Club, which has generated such projects as evidence-based practice changes, policy development and IRB-approved and grant-funded research.  She also developed the Journey to Advancement board to encourage nurses in the Professional Nursing Advancement Program.

Ms. Garcia was named ICU Unit Staff Nurse of the Year in 2012 and 2013; WKBH Unit Staff Nurse of the Year in 2012; Daisy awardee for the first quarter of 2013; ICU’s Most Outstanding Staff in 2011-12; and WKBH Employee of the Month in February 2013. She now adds Nurse of the Year to her impressive list of honors.






Laura DePina, R.N. | Baptist Outpatient Services
Laura DePina, R.N. | Baptist Outpatient Services

Laura DePina emigrated from Cuba to the U.S. with her parents and sisters in 1971. She comes from a family with a long line of medical practitioners, and her circle of family and friends motivated her and her sisters to seek careers in nursing. After graduating from high school, she worked as a pediatric medical assistant and attended Miami Dade College to study for her associate’s degree in Nursing. She and her three sisters all became registered nurses in 1984, making their physician father very proud.

After graduation, Ms. DePina worked as a pediatric nurse at Hollywood Memorial Hospital, where her father was an ER physician in charge of Fire Rescue. She held positions at several other hospitals and eventually came to Medical Arts Surgery Center, where she has shared her expertise with her team in Pre-op Holding and Pre-op Assessment for the last 16 years. She is an inspiration to her colleagues, who named her Baptist Outpatient Services’ Nurse of the Year.