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The Ascension Health “Living the Mission and Values Awards” were established to recognize and honor people and programs recommended by associates of Ascension Health for their dedication and commitment to our Mission and Values. To learn more about the 2012 Award Winners, click on their names:

Gwen Gallegos, Carondelet Health Network, Tucson, Ariz. - Individual Award Recipient
Lourdes Jail Services, Lourdes Health Network, Pasco, Wash. - Program Award Recipient
Pediatric Feeding Program, St. Mary's Medical Center, Evansville, Ind. - Organizational Component Award Recipient

Each nominee is recognized as one whom:

  • Demonstrates an extraordinary and recognized way to live the Mission and Values
  • Inspires, supports and encourages others to embrace the Mission and Values
  • Acts to enhance organizational commitment to living the Mission and Values

Every two years an invitation to submit nominations is sent throughout Ascension Health to nominate a person, a program or an organizational component based on the above criteria. The Ascension Health Selection Committee selects a winner for each category who receives the award at the Leadership Convocation.

The awards were established to acknowledge the highest level of excellence in the area of demonstrated and recognized day-to-day expression of Mission and Values of Ascension Health.  These awards also were created with the understanding that living the Mission and Values is not the exception, but the norm throughout Ascension Health.

For more information, contact Laura Moore O'Hara, Executive Assistant, Mission Integration and Theological Education at 314-733-8292 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Individual Award Recipient
Gwen Gallegos
Carondelet Health Network, Tucson, Ariz.

Diabetes is rapidly becoming an epidemic — especially among rural, impoverished and underserved populations — and Southern Arizona exemplifies this national problem. Gwen Gallegos has dedicated her life to addressing this issue.

As a Family Nurse Practitioner and Certified Diabetes Educator, Gwen recognized a gap in the care and support of pregnant women, adolescents and adults diagnosed with diabetes. For the past 22 years, she has run a Diabetes Support Group for youth and their families in Nogales, a rural community whose residents are primarily Mexican, with high unemployment, low levels of education, and little or no healthcare. Nogales is a federally designated Health Profession Shortage Area and a Medically Underserved Area. Gwen is the primary source of support for these young people and their parents, providing culturally sensitive education and clinical expertise to help them manage their diabetes successfully.

Through her wisdom, creativity and dedication, Gwen has implanted innovative and resource-effective strategies to enable Carondelet Health Network to live its Mission and Values. One example is a teleschool program she initiated with the school district on the Tohono O’odham reservation. More than 100 middle school children participate in a year long program to learn about diabetes, exercise and nutrition. They, in turn, share their knowledge with younger elementary school children. The popular program is being expanded to three additional schools in the area.

Gwen’s commitment to the health of her community also manifests itself in her mentoring of other health professionals. She works with interdisciplinary teams of health professional students in Nogales, attending weekly case management meetings and increasing their knowledge of diabetes management. Gwen has also presented at both state and national conferences, sharing her firsthand experiences with behavioral health issues and diabetes management. She also recently presented at the National Homeless Convention, addressing the issues of diabetes and behavioral health in that vulnerable population.

Gwen’s work is a testament to Ascension Health’s enduring Mission to provide spiritually centered, holistic care which sustains and improves the health of individuals and communities, especially those most in need. Through her work in the Arizona desert, she is living our Mission and Values and inspiring others to do the same.

Program Award Recipient
Lourdes Jail Services
Lourdes Health Network, Pasco, Wash.

The criminal justice system is overcrowded and underfunded, so it is easy to see how inmates are often forgotten and underserved. This is especially true for the growing numbers of mentally ill inmates, who are often the most vulnerable and complex to serve.

In 2005, Lourdes Counseling Center was asked by Washington state officials to assist inmates who were suffering from mental illness. These men and women were often left to languish in their jail cells without medication or treatment. The Lourdes Jail Team, consisting of three mental health counselors, began working with the Office of Public Defense, Crisis Response Unit and other community mental health providers to ensure proper care and treatment are available to these patients in jail and after release.

Each week the team works within the walls of the county jails, which hold more than 1,000 inmates. Many of their patients have suffered homelessness and turned to substance abuse and violence, resulting in their incarceration. The Lourdes Team overcomes any fears and stigma of working with this poor and vulnerable population, helping to break down barriers and bring together local resources that contribute to better treatment of patients and a safer community.

  • The Jail team developed a system to deal with psychiatric emergencies that has enabled inmates experiencing these crises to be transferred to a psychiatric hospital for treatment. This has proven to be more humane for the individual and safer for the community.
  • The team also works with prosecutors and defense attorneys to promote the best possible outcome for both the individual and the community. This may include helping patients negotiate shorter or alternative sentencing, such as inpatient mental health treatment programs, instead of jail sentences.
  • Lourdes Jail Services staff are also involved with advocating for state legislation that would enable more effective forensic evaluations and improved wait times, and address competency issues. They have led efforts to maintain a tracking system to monitor patents awaiting evaluations or who have been determined incompetent to stand trial. And they have become the point of contact for addressing public and patient safety in preparation for release of inmates who are deemed incompetent.

The local community looks to Lourdes Jail Services as a leader in creating restorative programs. Through its dedication and creativity, the team has positively influenced the criminal justice process, raised awareness of the needs of this underserved population, and demonstrated an extraordinary and unique way to live our Mission and Values.

Organizational Component Award Recipient
Pediatric Feeding Program
St. Mary’s Medical Center, Evansville, Ind.

The Pediatric Feeding Program at St. Mary’s Center for Children began as a treatment model for children with complex feeding disorders. It has quickly evolved into an integrated, person-centered care approach that involves care teams from throughout the Health Ministry.

Technological advances have improved the survival rate of children with prematurity as well as neurological and other disorders. But this has also increased the need for innovative treatment models to replace isolated approaches, such as feeding tubes or psychologically based treatments, which are too often ineffective, leaving families frustrated and stressed. Without successful intervention, persistent feeding disorders can result in poor growth, mealtime struggles, limited options for childcare and socialization, and life long use of a feeding tube for nutrition. St. Mary’s responded to this need, creating a comprehensive treatment program that seeks to enable children to be successful eating by mouth, and empowers families to continue the progress in feeding skills once children return home.

Acting as an integrated group, physicians, behavioral psychologists, occupational therapists, speech language pathologists, feeding technicians, nutritionists, nurses, family advocates and others all work in harmony to provide special attention to young patients who are vulnerable and underserved. Team members receive extensive training in medical, therapeutic and behavioral approaches, and share ownership of patient treatment and outcomes.

The Feeding Program further motivates others in the Health Ministry to provide coordinated, holistic care. Surgeons have assisted with gastrostomy tube care. The Medical Equipment Department has provided portable pediatric pumps for children on feeding tubes to promote mobility in meeting developmental milestones. Neonatal Intensive Care Unit discharge recommendations include referrals to the Center for Children to prevent later development of more severe problems for these infants. The Feeding Team also assists with radiological procedures for their patients to assure better test results.

The Feeding Team and all of St. Mary’s staff are dedicated to extending spiritually centered, holistic care beyond the medical center and into the home, school, daycare and other settings. Therapists, nurses, teachers and others from the community go to the hospital to learn new treatment strategies that will benefit the child. The Feeding Team also does community outreach and teleconferencing to provide training and raise awareness of this model.

The Feeding Program has given new hope to many children with special chronic healthcare needs. As it demonstrates success with children who were previously considered untreatable, St. Mary’s inspires others to embrace and express its Mission and Values.

It is an honor to be nominated for this award, and we recognize the following nominees for their extraordinary contribution to the Health Ministries of Ascension Health.

Nicole Bennett
Ministry Service Center Indianapolis, Ind

As Leave Management Manager at the Ministry Service Center (MSC), Nicole Bennett has led the development of a leave management process that ultimately will benefit every Health Ministry. She has carefully reviewed, monitored and tweaked the leave management training process to identify and address all potential legal and administrative issues. Her director calls her “an extreme asset” to the success of the MSC. Nicole and two other MSC staff have also led a volunteer effort at a nearby Health Ministry, creating a series of special events to bring some joy and love to hearing-impaired children there. Nicole models creativity, integrity and dedication to the Mission and Values, inspiring others to emulate her efforts in their own work.

Olive Dennis
Providence Hospital Washington, D.C.

Despite its 55-year age, Carroll Manor, Providence’s long-term care facility, is renowned for its spotlessly clean and safe condition. That is due to “Miss Olive’s team,” and its dedicated leader, Olive Dennis. As the long time supervisor of housekeeping at Carroll Manor, Olive was driven by a fundamental commitment to human dignity. For her, it was not about keeping a clean building. It was always about keeping the home of her elderly residents in order. Her respect for others, for the environment and for her work lives on, even after her recent retirement, as “Miss Olive’s Way” continues to be embraced by the associates she trained and coached.

Chad Dieterichs, MD
Seton Healthcare Family Austin, Texas

A Seton anesthesiologist, Dr. Dieterichs has helped lead Seton’s Best Practices Implementation Committee that champions the adoption of best practices to improve clinical quality. But it is with the Eels on Wheels Adaptive Scuba Club that Dr. Dieterichs truly expresses his commitment to the Ascension Health Mission. For 10 years, he has served as president of this nonprofit, which teaches children with quadriplegia, paraplegia and other disabilities to scuba dive. Through Adaptive Diving, he and other volunteers make it possible for these children to experience the freedom and excitement of doing things in the water that they are unable to do in a wheelchair. Those who witness this transformation have a totally different perspective of what life is like with a disability.

Emma “Marty” Dyson
AHIS/Shared Information Services Evansville, Ind.

Marty Dyson is a Senior Analyst who leads the Shared Information Services Custom Programming Team. In that role, she assigns and prioritizes work requests, collaborating with Health Ministry staff and her own team to meet everyone’s needs. Marty also leads most of her Health Ministry’s Mission activities, recruiting and encouraging others to participate in fundraisers, parties, special events and volunteer activities to help those less fortunate. Her dedication led to adoption of Caze Elementary School in a low-income area of Evansville. Under Marty’s leadership, AHIS has collected school supplies and teaching resources, and distributed Christmas gifts and clothing to the students. Her motivation? “To give these children a chance to succeed.”

Mohammad Ghazi, MD
St. Mary’s Healthcare Amsterdam, N.Y.

Outstanding leaders are those that have both vision and the ability to convince others to embrace that vision. Dr. Ghazi is that type of leader. As chairman of St. Mary’s Board of Trustees from 2006-2012, Dr. Ghazi guided the merger of St. Mary’s Hospital and Amsterdam Memorial, creating a combined healthcare system that benefits the local community. His gentle, open and persistent style won over a diverse set of stakeholders, with each group feeling its concerns and hopes were heard and addressed. Dr. Ghazi built a culture marked by collaboration, Mission focus, spirituality and continuous learning, and its impact will be felt for years to come.

Tracie Loftis
St. Vincent’s HealthCare Jacksonville, Fla.

Every day, Tracie Loftis demonstrates a commitment to serving all persons, with special attention to those who are poor and vulnerable. It manifested itself in her mission trip to Haiti, where she purchased supplies and reorganized purchasing processes. It is evident in her role as System Director, Mission Operations, where she takes steps to ensure dignified care for patients and their families living in poverty, as well as associates in need of emergency financial assistance. Her commitment to the Mission and Values led to her being appointed Director of Pastoral and Vincentian Services, overseeing the Health Ministry’s chaplains even though she had no background or training in that field. That group now praises her for her inspirational leadership.

Debbie Perez
Daughters of Charity Services of San Antonio San Antonio, Texas

Debbie Perez is known around San Antonio as a “MacGyver.” In other words, she specializes in making something out of nothing. Working with seniors throughout the area, she often goes the extra mile to help them, whether it’s securing a much-needed air conditioner, lining up socialization activities for homebound seniors, or arranging for housing for homeless individuals. Debbie’s respect and compassion for those she serves reflect our Values of Reverence, Service of the Poor, Wisdom, Integrity, Creativity and Dedication. Client satisfaction surveys regularly sing her praises: clients trust her and know she will always treat them with respect.

Kevin Taylor, MD
Lourdes Health Network Pasco, Wash.

Dr. Taylor is a family practitioner and medical leader whose creativity and dedication motivate other physicians, associates and volunteers to experiment with new ideas. As champion of a new “open access model of primary care” designed to enhance productivity, efficiency and quality patient services, he was the first to initiate the model in his own practice. Dr. Taylor also championed an ambulatory clinic electronic health record, writing templates and experimenting with changes in his own practice to make it even better. His deep faith also inspires others. Dr. Taylor truly lives the Mission, not only as a leader, but as a caregiver, mentor and colleague.

Trissa Torres, MD, MSPH, FACPM
Genesys Health System Grand Blanc, Mich.

Within Genesys and across the country, Dr. Torres is known for her efforts to lead the transformation of patient care. She serves as Medical Director of Genesys HealthWorks, an innovative population health initiative. Over 15 years, she has evolved this model to help improve community health, contain costs, and improve the healthcare experience of patients and communities. HealthWorks seeks to “meet people where they are” with the appropriate support to adopt healthy behaviors and lifestyle choices. Under her leadership, HealthWorks has set the standard within Genesys and the community for care delivery, and Dr. Torres is working to share the model statewide and on a national level as a framework for healthcare reform.

Sr. Betty Veenhuis, CSJ
Borgess Health Kalamazoo, Mich.

When associates at Borgess Health seek comfort, wisdom, strength or support, they turn to Sr. Betty Veenhuis. One of her lasting influences has been an empathy training program she developed to help associates reflect on the reasons they chose a healthcare career and how our Values meet the needs of patients and their families when they are integrated into daily practices. Many staff have commented that this training has renewed their passion for healthcare and Ascension Health’s Mission. In this and many other areas, Sr. Betty has had a lasting effect on Borgess. Her legacy will benefit the organization and the community for many years to come.

As is true of the individual nominees, the program nominees represent an extraordinary orientation toward service to those most in need. These services represent significant commitments to express both Mission and Values in the daily lives of those in their communities. We recognize the following programs for their extraordinary service.

Adopt-A-Child Program
Daughters of Charity Services of San Antonio
San Antonio, Texas

When low-income mothers began keeping their children home from school to protect them from the humiliation of starting school in worn and tattered clothes, the Daughters of Charity started an Adopt-A-Child Back to School program. Each year, the program collects and distributes school supplies and a complete set of new clothes to more than 600 children, ensuring they get a good start on their school
year. Donors, businesses and volunteers all chip in to make the program work. One volunteer even personally sews 20 sets of clothes for her adopted child, including a Halloween costume, and special outfits for Easter, Christmas and Valentine’s Day.

AVM Adult Day Services
Alexian Village of Milwaukee
Milwaukee, Wisc.

Alexian’s Adult Day Services fills an important need in the Milwaukee community. Each day more than 50 older adults attend, seeking care management, socialization, outpatient therapy or other support. Patients’ families also receive respite from the challenges of caregiving. The program includes three “neighborhoods” — medical, social and developmental — that facilitate sharing by participants with similar
needs. As a result, the program stimulates needy seniors and engages them with a renewed sense of purpose and meaning. A genuine spirit of caring and sharing exists between participants and Alexian staff, and it is carried back into participants’ homes.

Center for Perinatal Advocacy
Providence Hospital
Washington, D.C.

With Ascension Health’s Mission and Values as its template, the Center for Perinatal Advocacy is a catalyst for innovative maternal and infant best practices. The center has created partnerships with other community organizations to raise awareness of issues such as safe sleep, infant safety and prenatal care. Its success has inspired other departments at Providence to seek out community partners as well, to
address obesity, diabetes and other critical health issues. As a result, Providence has earned a reputation as a trusted player in the community and an important leader in improving community health.

Centering Pregnancy
Borgess Women’s Health
Kalamazoo, Mich.

Centering Pregnancy is a multifaceted model of group care that provides health assessment, prenatal and parenting education and support to a diverse group of at-risk expectant mothers. It is the first such program certified in the state of Michigan. The program empowers women to choose health-promoting behaviors, emphasizes choices that support healthy birth weights, and accentuates the joy and hope of bringing a new child into the world. The program has helped build leadership and patient advocacy skills among Medical Assistants and inspired them to think beyond the needs of individual patients to focus on the needs of the community as a whole.

Community Engagement
Ministry Service Center
Indianapolis, Ind.

When the Ministry Service Center (MSC) first contemplated a Community Engagement Program, two dozen associates immediately stepped forward to make it possible. Today, more than a quarter of all MSC associates have participated in various initiatives. These include a food pantry, minor home repair services, help for a community center, mentoring services, blood donation, and support for the hearing-impaired
children at St. Joseph Institute for the Deaf. The MSC is living the Mission in delivering outstanding volunteer services to make a lasting difference for those most in need.

Corazon de Maria (Mary’s Heart) Program
Carondelet Health Network
Tucson, Ariz.

The Corazon de Maria Program provides education and support to teenage parents in Nogales, Ariz., a predominately Hispanic community with 50 percent poverty levels. The teenage pregnancy rate there exceeds 60 percent. Associates and volunteers provide psychological and spiritual needs assessment, parenting education, referrals to community services, and mentoring relationships with the young mothers. By compassionately ministering to poor and vulnerable teens and newborns, the program’s staff attests to our Mission of serving those most in need, and to sustaining and improving the health of individuals and communities.

Green Initiatives
Our Lady of Lourdes Memorial Hospital
Binghamton, N.Y.

The Green Initiatives program inspires all Lourdes departments to find new ways to reduce waste and expenses, further enabling the hospital to pursue its Mission of charity. A composting program keeps two tons of food waste out of local landfills. A recycling and reuse program channels unneeded furniture and equipment to other departments or to community agencies, furthering their useful life. Buying local products supports the local economy and helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In all, the program has enhanced community perceptions of Lourdes and demonstrated its commitment to “living softly.”

Healthy Beginnings
Carondelet Health
Kansas City, Mo.

As part of its commitment to leave no one behind, St. Joseph and St. Mary’s medical centers provide a unique program for pregnant women considered socially at risk for complications. Nurses meet with participants three to five times and provide support and education. Each expectant mother is assigned a labor and delivery nurse as a personal mentor, who encourages healthy lifestyle choices, cessation of
cigarette and alcohol use, and a social environment that will support the best outcomes. The goal is for every mother to deliver a healthy, full-term baby. New mothers also receive a free car seat, breast pump and breast-feeding classes.

Hospital Outreach Patient Eligibility (HOPE) Program
St. Vincent’s HealthCare
Jacksonville, Fla.

The HOPE Program helps patients in need who are unable to afford healthcare. Financial Counselors are available by telephone to assist patients in identifying a source for their care. Since 2011, more than 1,000 individuals have been helped in this way. Counselors also attend community outreach events to provide information and assistance to poor and vulnerable populations. Other departments have joined in
this effort, expanding the range of services and screenings available. The word has spread quickly, and patients, family and friends are now making frequent referrals, helping to bring needed medical services to those who previously had little or no access.

Medical Mission at Home
Saint Thomas Health
Nashville, Tenn.

“A mission in our backyard.” That’s the way one local pastor described Saint Thomas’ Medical Mission at Home. The monthly, one-day urban and rural outreach event brings primary care, dental care, behavioral health, health screenings, prescription medication and vision care to those affected by poverty. More than 100 volunteer doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals participate, with many remarking on how their participation blesses them as well as those they serve. Medical Mission at Home has attracted dozens of other area organizations to participate and donate products and services, which helps to spread the Mission and Values across the community.

Parochial School Support Services
Alexian Brothers Parish Services
Schaumburg, Ill.

Parochial School Support Services involves a team of 11 Alexian associates who work with 18 area schools to provide otherwise unavailable services, such as counseling, social work services and special education for K-8 students. The team has developed a number of programs to meet the needs of students in each school, including a leadership training academy for seventh- and eighth-grade students, an anti-bullying curriculum, an internship program, parenting groups, divorce recovery groups, and other support activities. Last year, the team held 3,736 individual meetings with students, 1,479 family meetings, and 1,789 classroom presentations that were observed by more than 40,000 students.

SMART (St. Mary’s Avoidable Readmission Team) Program
St. Mary’s Medical Center
Evansville, Ind.

Every day, volunteers from St. Mary’s Auxiliary telephone recently discharged patients to verify that they are following their prescribed discharge plan. The goal is to reduce readmissions due to a failure to follow instructions, such as not taking prescribed medications or not having oxygen at home. The volunteers identify and help address barriers to compliance, such as a lack of transportation or an inability to afford medications. They work with case managers and pharmacists to improve discharge instructions and find affordable medication options when possible. The SMART program is credited with helping to raise St. Mary’s patient satisfaction scores, and with enhancing the Medical Center’s image in the community.

St. Vincent Seton Specialty Hospitals Transition Care Program
St. Vincent Health
Indianapolis, Ind.

The Transition Care Program was started 15 years ago to help patients and their families continue to recover after an extended acute care stay in the hospital. An interdisciplinary team helps them adjust to new surroundings, new providers and new clinical staff, providing quality, compassionate care through pain management and emotional/spiritual support tailored to each person’s needs and wishes. Groups of
associates distribute handmade blankets, while others volunteer to lend support and comfort to the patient at the end of life and to the family long afterwards. Associates’ reverence for life and their respect for the dignity of each individual reflect our Mission and Values and have inspired Joint Commission surveyors to ask to share the program with other hospital systems.

Transitional Living Program for those Struggling with Mental Illness
Alexian Brothers Center for Mental Health
Arlington Heights, Ill.

When individuals with mental illness arrive at Alexian Brothers Transitional Living Program (TLP) they often are battered and bruised, and in great need of support and hope. Many are homeless, with only the clothes on their back and in significant psychiatric distress. The TLP staff gives them more than a furnished place to live. They provide skilled assistance, respect and needed resources. In every case, they demonstrate reverence for all, and appreciate the uniqueness of each resident. As a result, over 70 percent of residents are successfully discharged, with the average length of stay barely half that expected by the state Department of Mental Health.

Urban Church Wellness Initiative
Columbia St. Mary’s
Milwaukee, Wisc.

The Urban Church Wellness Initiative seeks to create a healthier community by providing health education, screenings and services for African-Americans in need. The program’s results speak for themselves: more than 6,000 lives touched; 71 percent have lowered their blood pressure; 56 percent have reduced their risk of heart failure; and 83 percent of patients with diabetes have achieved better disease management. Working with volunteers from 40 area churches, two Community Health Workers have successfully fostered an environment in which people have the means to make good decisions about their health and realize a higher quality of life and a vibrant society.

While these individuals and programs have been singled out for special recognition, we acknowledge that they are a reflection of an overall Ascension Health culture.  This is a culture characterized by a clear and unwavering commitment to furthering our Strategic Direction, actualizing our Mission and Values.  The following nominees for the Organizational Component award exemplify living our Values-based culture. True of the individual nominees, the program nominees represent an extraordinary orientation toward service to those most in need. These services represent significant commitments to express both Mission and Values in the daily lives of those in their communities. We recognize the following programs for their extraordinary service.

Acute (Physical) Rehabilitation Unit (ARU)
St. Mary’s Healthcare
Amsterdam, N.Y.

When St. Mary’s created its ARU in 1997, its goal was to create an environment that enables patients to recover physically, mentally and spiritually. The ARU has been described as an internal Habitat for Humanity and the spoke of the healthcare wheel that enables patients to continue on a positive healthcare path. More than an acute care unit, the ARU is a community where the staff employs a “fine tuning philosophy” to help each patient deal not only with the physical challenges they are facing, but with issues such as loss of independence and control, depression, and a need for compassion and encouragement. The ARU’s goal is “to succeed for the patient” and help patients return home with positive outcomes and high satisfaction.

Alexian Brothers Parish Services
Alexian Brothers Health System
Schaumburg, Ill.

Alexian Brothers Parish Services began almost 20 years ago in response to a request from local Catholic parishes to support their mental health needs. What began as a pastoral counseling service has grown to include Faith Community Nursing, school-based services, a Youth Leader Retreat, domestic violence awareness and other support services. Services are provided on a sliding fee scale. All programs and
services are holistic, incorporating mind, body and spirit fully. Twenty-five associates serve as Alexian’s point of contact in the community, helping to connect parishioners with needed services and representing the Mission and Values in all they do.

Community Based Solutions at Work
Daughters of Charity Services of San Antonio
San Antonio, Texas

Serving the residents of an economically challenged area plagued by drugs and gang violence, Daughters of Charity Services’ associates discovered a need to provide more than just safety net services. Residents were afraid to leave their home. They needed safe exercise places, nutrition and disease management classes, and even computer training classes to help improve their situation. In response, the organization raised more than $350,000 to make improvements to the neighborhood park, created leadership academies for parents, grandparents and associates living in the neighborhood, and raised awareness and community involvement that have led to a safer, more
cohesive and engaged community.

Lourdes Counseling Center Outpatient Therapy Department
Lourdes Health Network
Pasco, Wash.

Individuals disabled by mental illness often struggle with employment and live off disability income or state assistance. Because of their illness, they are also more likely to be victimized or abused, become homeless, or enter into an unhealthy relationship. The therapists at Lourdes Counseling Center work to heal the wounds of these individuals, providing support and giving them hope for a better life. Services
include case management, medication management, residential services and employment services. Their compassionate approach in helping a wide range of individuals and families has increased referrals from others in the community who have witnessed their success.

Mission Integration, Community Outreach
St. Vincent’s Health System
Birmingham, Ala.

After 18 months of study, St. Vincent’s transitioned its Adult Medical Clinic to become the Access-to-Care program, with a goal of helping patients become more self-sufficient and exit the program in a more timely fashion. The program reaches into five counties with more than 450 participants cared for by a primary care physician. A seasoned psychosocial worker serves as Program Coordinator, connecting participants to the holistic care that extends beyond the medical visit. Participants are coached about their responsibility for their own health, as well as access to community resources. In this way, the maze of social services is streamlined and generates meaningful referrals while fostering greater respect for the poor being served.

St. Vincent’s Foundation
St. Vincent’s HealthCare
Jacksonville, Fla.

St. Vincent’s Foundation supports programs and services that provide equal access to medical care for the poor and vulnerable in Northeast Florida. Since 2004, the foundation has raised more than $70 million, including: $10 million for a new hospital; $6.4 million to fund a Mobile Health Outreach Ministry serving migrant farm workers; and $2.3 million for a wide range of other community outreach programs. In addition, the foundation started the Gold Key Club to provide financial assistance to associates or patients in crisis. To support Healthcare That Is Safe, the foundation also has funded technology to ensure safer surgeries through robotic-assisted surgical systems.

Seniors Clinic, St. Joseph Medical Center
Carondelet Health
Kansas City, Mo.

While working in the Emergency Room, Sr. Margaret Vincent, CSJ, RN, realized that many of her older patients might have had less severe health situations had they been seen sooner. Most, however, lacked the means to get to a doctor. Thus was born the Seniors Clinic, whose goal is to ensure chronic diseases are well managed and healthcare emergencies avoided. Last fiscal year the clinic treated nearly 1,500 seniors; many were able to see a doctor the same day they called. Those confined to wheelchairs or semi-ambulatory are provided with free transportation to the clinic. The clinic works closely with other Medical Center departments to coordinate one-stop care and ensure the highest quality care for every patient.

Seton Healthcare Family Wildfire Relief Team Fund
Seton Healthcare Family Associates
Austin, Texas

In September 2011, a wildfire near Austin destroyed almost 1,700 homes and charred more than 100,000 acres, forcing 5,000 residents to flee. More than 400 Seton Healthcare Family associates were among them. Within hours, the entire Seton Family mobilized, checking on associates and neighbors, attending to casualties, identifying needs, and creating a task force to oversee relief efforts. Donations of cash and goods were collected and distributed. Associates even opened their homes to those with nowhere else to turn, often welcoming complete strangers. In all, the Seton workforce contributed $50,000 and 6,000 pounds of food, clothing and household goods, and spent countless
hours volunteering to help the victims and firefighters during this terrible tragedy.

Seton House Behavioral Health
Providence Hospital
Washington, D.C.

Individuals with substance abuse and mental health issues often have significant needs and few resources, especially when they are homeless or have complications from other diseases. Seton House, Providence’s Behavioral Health Services, exists to provide this population with holistic therapeutic care. The late Sr. Maureen Beitman, DC, who provided spiritual services, exemplified Seton House’s unique approach. A fierce advocate for the poor, Sr. Maureen upheld the dignity of each patient and demonstrated how spirituality, incorporated into traditional psychotherapy and combined with compassionate care, can lead to positive outcomes for even the most vulnerable among us.

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