Oct 10 2012

UMHHC Security and Entrance Services receives 2012 Evan Newport HOPE Award

They’re often the first people patients and families see and the last to say goodbye. They help patients and families through their worst moments or times of joy. Their job is one of the hardest: keeping patients, families and staff safe 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Now UMHHC Security and Entrance Services is the recipient of C.S. Mott’s 2012 Evan Newport HOPE Award as the year’s outstanding program or service that best exemplifies what patient and family-centered care is all about.

“Winning this award acknowledges that Security and Entrance Services staff are successfully achieving their long-standing, ongoing mission to be irreplaceable partners in the healthcare team,” says Director, UMHHC Security and Entrance Services, Marilyn Hollier, CPP, CHPA.

Marilyn Hollier, CPP, CHPA, director, UMHHC Security and Entrance Services, and Perry Spencer, manager of Uniformed Operations, Security and Entrance Services, display the 2012 Evan Newport HOPE Team Award

Security work, because of its very nature, is full of nuance—and the need for flexibility. Particularly so for security operations that take place within a healthcare environment.

Because Security Operations, for instance, recognizes the difference between working as a security officer in an adult hospital versus one working in a children’s and women’s hospital, it has identified a core of 15 officers with a lead officer who are assigned to C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital and Von Voigtlander Women’s Hospital.

In addition, due to the nature of their jobs, Security has representatives on the Decedent Affairs Bereavement Committees (both adult and pediatric) and the Diversity at End of Life Committee. The diversity committee was actually formed after Security noticed a difficulty on the part of clinical staff when faced with the grieving behaviors of diverse cultures. Read the rest of this entry »

Oct 10 2012

U-M doctor helps deaf college students achieve their dreams: “Once you get in the door, you want to open the door for other people.”

U-M’s Philip Zazove – the third known deaf doctor in the U.S. – says his family’s foundation honors his mother and her work by helping deaf college students pay for school

When Philip Zazove’s parents discovered their four-year-old son was deaf in 1955, they were given a best-case-scenario they wouldn’t accept: that he’d complete special education classes, get a non-skilled job and be “functional.”

Instead, Zazove went to college, then medical school and on to become the third known deaf doctor in the country.

Today, along with his family, Zazove, M.D., clinical professor and interim chair of Family Medicine, University of Michigan, aims to help other deaf students achieve their goals through the Louise Tumarkin Zazove Foundation. The national foundation awards high-achieving deaf students with college scholarships.

Louise Zazove persistently pursued her dream of being a physician during an era when few women were accepted into medical schools. She then helped make sure her son achieved his own dreams.

“Once you get in the door, you want to open the door for other people,” says Zazove, 61, a Chicago native. “Access to education is one of the biggest barriers for people who are deaf and hard of hearing.”

The foundation is a fitting memorial for Zazove’s mother Louise who not only advocated for her son’s education rights but her own. The eldest child of poor Russian immigrants, Louise dreamed of being a physician herself but it was an era when few women –especially Jewish women – were accepted at American medical schools.

Undeterred by several rejections, Louise was ultimately accepted into Chicago Medical School as the only woman in an entering class of 92 students.

When Louise learned her son was deaf, she learned all she could about deafness, consulted experts and devoted herself to seeking the best ways to educate him. She and Zazove’s father Earl, also a doctor, made a radical decision: to send their son through public schools so he could thrive in the hearing world.

It meant adamantly protesting when teachers asked to move their son out of mainstream classes, advocating for accommodations when necessary, and even visiting skeptical college admissions directors who couldn’t believe how well their son had excelled in high school.

“My parents fought hard so that I would be treated the same as everyone else. If it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t be here,” Zazove says. “They always told me I could do whatever I wanted to do.”

“My mom really valued education because it was the reason she succeeded,” he adds. “It’s gratifying to see this foundation make a difference for other people and to help them succeed. It honors my mother. It continues her work.”

The foundation awards roughly $25,000 a year and has helped more than 25 students from around the country since being established in 2003.

The scholarship has made a big difference to recipients such as Alison Stroud, 28, who is now pursuing a master’s degree in public policy, specifically on disability rights, at U-M. Read the rest of this entry »

Oct 5 2012

UMHS Social Work celebrates 100th Anniversary

Always there for patients, families and staff

On September 21, the Department of Social Work celebrated its 100th anniversary at the University of Michigan Health System, but, as Clinical Social Work Coordinator Katie Barry says, “We’re really celebrating how embedded we are in the whole Health System.

“We may not be as easily visible as doctors and nurses, but we’re there helping patients get good outcomes, including quality of life. We help give families a voice. We also help staff deal with occasional behavioral interventions and their own grief.  We’re here for …well, just about everybody.”

Being there is a big part of being a medical social worker. Patient Melvin Tounsel can attest to that.

One night Tounsel, who had recently had a liver transplant and was experiencing great pain and fear, really needed someone. And that someone was his clinical social worker Daniel Reid, who had worked with him all through the transplant process. Tounsel called the Health System, Reid was found, and that was really all Tounsel remembers until he woke up the next day in the hospital.

“One of the first people I saw was Daniel,” Tounsel says. “I said to him, ‘I was looking for you,’ and he said, ‘I heard.’”

Tounsel, a now-retired substance abuse counselor and family therapist, says, “I thank God for Daniel’s presence, his knowledge and just being there. He just comforted me and he just made me believe that I’d be here the next day.”

Reid acknowledges the special bond the two men have. “All his life Melvin has given to other people, and sometimes it’s hard for a giver to ask for help. I wanted him to focus in on himself for a change.”

“Daniel made me believe I could achieve,” Tounsel says. Read the rest of this entry »