Thursday, February 24, 2011

Taking Joy in Caring for a Community

I frequently ask the question, “what if it was your daughter.” Well, for one family that was recently treated at GBMC, it was their daughter, a toddler named Ellie, who was cared for by Dr. Allison Jensen, a pediatric ophthalmologist. The parents sent me a heartfelt letter that demonstrates how a physician, who truly takes joy in her job of caring for people, can make such a difference, both clinically and emotionally. Physicians and healthcare providers such as Dr. Jensen are why our community embraces GBMC as “their” hospital. Here is an excerpt from the letter:
“…Dr. Allison Jensen has become one of our, and our daughter’s, favorite people. A few months ago, our toddler developed a growth on the edge of her lower eye lid. The growth doubled in size rather quickly so we made arrangements with Dr. Jensen to have it removed. Weeks later, when we arrived for the surgical appointment, Dr. Jensen was alarmed at the rate in which the spot had grown. She suggested we postpone the surgery until a later date when a plastic surgeon could be present to assist. That was a Friday, and she cleared her schedule the following Monday to fit us in. The biopsy of the growth revealed cancer – squamous cell carcinoma – which was highly unusual in someone our daughter’s age.
While the success of the operation and speed of recovery obviously pleased my wife and I, what really astounded us was the manner in which Dr. Jensen conducted herself throughout the procedure and the events that followed. She made it clear that we were to call her with any questions – even giving us her personal cell phone number and fielding calls on a Sunday. Dr. Jensen took it upon herself to not only send out another sample for a second opinion, but to personally transport a sample to Philadelphia in order to have it tested by a physician she knew and trusted... Dr. Jensen’s caring and gentle delivery of the results went a long way in helping us deal with the reality of the situation.  
…All of Ellie’s follow-up appointments have been encouraging, so we are breathing easier now. You are quite fortunate to have a physician such as Dr. Allison Jensen working at GBMC. She is truly an asset to her practice, your hospital and the profession…”

Dr. Allison Jensen is recognized
for her outstanding care by
Dr. Chessare at a recent
Leadership conference.

Dr. Jensen serves as a shining example of our Greater values and of a healthcare professional who truly cares about her patients and quality outcomes.  Individuals like Dr. Jensen are why GBMC is such a big part of the community. 
In fact, having been in the not-for-profit healthcare world for many years, it’s astounding to me the sense of ownership our community feels for GBMC.  Of course, our mission is to serve the community – our patients always come first.
This mission is brought to life by people like Charlie Fenwick, our Chairman of the Board, and Harry Johnson, our in-coming Chairman, as well as generous individuals like Sandra and Malcolm Berman, who help make GBMC the center of the community. Last week, I had the opportunity to join Drs. John Saunders, Rob Brookland and Gary Cohen at a special gathering that the Bermans’ hosted in Florida where more than 70 people gathered to learn more about how they could help support GBMC. Some of those present at this event were current donors and others were there to learn more about GBMC’s cancer program, the hospital as a whole, and how they could help secure a successful future for GBMC so we can continue to serve our neighbors with the best clinical outcomes, best care and most advanced technology. I have to say, Sandy and Malcolm Berman really get it. Sandy comes to the hospital several hours a week to actively participate in a variety of meetings. She truly cares about our future.
It’s people like the Berman’s and our Board members, as well as physicians like Dr. Allison Jensen, who truly understand what it means to serve the community. For this commitment, I am most thankful.
Stay tuned for next week’s post – we will continue to celebrate the success of those who have embraced the culture of patient safety here at GBMC…

P.S. – As an update on the topic of cleanliness, Judie Kusiolek, Mike Forthman, Keith Poisson and I recently toured the facility to get a firsthand account of where we stand with cleanliness…I believe we’re getting there, but there’s still work to be done. The issue of cleanliness isn’t going to fade away, we’re on it…and I hope you all are too.  

1 comment:

  1. Dr. Jensen certainly deserves the recognition! Driving a sample to Philadelphia! We should have somewhere in the lobby, perhaps near the piano, a "recognition cabinet" for Physicians/Nurses for recognition for the month/quarter etc. for all to see!


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