The Hildegard Peplau Award was established in 1990 to honor a nurse who has made significant contributions to nursing practice over a lifetime through scholarly activities, clinical practice, and policy development, specifically directed towards the psychosocial and psychiatric aspects of nursing care delivery.
About Hildegard Peplau
Hildegard Peplau, who passed away in March 1999, was a major force within the profession and discipline of nursing for over three decades. She made significant contributions as a leader within the professional organization serving a both the president and executive director of ANA, and within the discipline as developer of theory and innovator in developing the role of the psychiatric nurse. Peplau helped to pioneer the development of the Clinical Specialist in Psychiatric Nursing and served as mentor to countless members of psychiatric nurses across the country.
Peplau was an exceptionally clear thinker who changed the field of nursing and the sub-specialty of psychiatric nursing dramatically over the course of her career. Even in her retirement, she was called upon to be a source of knowledge and expertise. She made a significant contributions to the development of ANA's Social Policy Statement and set the stage early in her career for the development of standards of psychiatric nursing. In addition, she went to the "front lines" of psychiatric nursing practice in presenting countless continuing education workshops in state hospitals across the country, touching the lives of nurses and patients in those facilities. She provided the impetus for the integration of psychosocial concepts into the practice of all nursing, thereby enriching the care of all patients.