We recently celebrated Hospital Heroes who help to bridge the gaps in healthcare by providing exceptional care to their patients and their families, and who, through a deep desire to serve and connect, have left an indelible mark on their communities. They are specialists and nurses as well as volunteers, program directors, social workers, and surgeons. What follows are a series of profiles of these heroes.
Leslie "Les" Sampson, MSN, RN, is the Clinical Liaison, Director at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and has dedicated his life and career to serving patients and family members as both a critical care nurse and in his current role as the clinical liaison for the Office of Licensure, Accreditation and Regulation (OLAR). Every single patient benefits from Les’ thoughtful and clear understanding of nursing practices, the regulatory requirements of California and The Joint Commission. His depth of understanding of healthcare and his unique perspective of the nurse at the bedside has always guided his work in creating policies, protocols, guidelines and procedures that help ensure the safe, quality care of our patients. He is a hero in the minds and hearts of the patient caregivers who know the value of his work, and he is a hero to the patients whose care is guided by his skill and expertise.
At home, she is mom, but once she has donned her scrubs and sent her kids off to school, Amy Pullen is the Emergency Department Director at Desert Valley Hospital. As such, she holds strangers’ hands when no one else is there for them, cries with families when they lose a loved one and holds a child because her mommy is sick. Amy does all of these things daily, and much more, when managing the hospital’s most hectic, but most vital, department. Amy implemented the LEAF program within the E.D. and has been innovative regarding decreasing pressure ulcers with this program. A monitor has been set up at the nurses’ station to evaluate if the patients with LEAF monitor system have been turned appropriately. Also, Amy was the main component in Desert Valley becoming a STEMI center, in order to provide the quality care that Desert Valley Hospital has committed to the community. She recently completed her BSN studies while continuing to manage this area. Staff turnover has required her to work the department while still completing all duties as the Director. Amy is responsible and it is sometimes hard to fathom where her fortitude comes from. Her colleagues honor her as their hospital hero and hope to emulate the work and demeanor she displays while accomplishing some of the amazing things that she has been able to achieve.
The most profound acts of heroism are often carried out quietly, by angels in our midst, and this is certainly true of Vickie Kropenske, PHN, MSN, founding director of Hope Street FamilyCenter at Dignity HealthCalifornia Hospital Medical Center. Vickie established HSFC in 1992 in response to Los Angeles’s civil unrest. It’s grown from a pilot project with three staff supporting at-risk mothers delivering at CHMC to a national model with a $9M grant-funded budget and 125 staff serving 2,000 families annually. Vickie would credit HSFC’s partners for this achievement. But without her vision, tenacity, and ability to build upon our patients’ strengths, this vibrant resource for low-income families wouldn’t exist. HSFC is the first community wellness center located on a hospital campus in Los Angeles—perhaps California—and while its founding predates the ACA by 20 years, it epitomizes innovative approaches to improving health outcomes. Perhaps the words of two HSFC parents best express why Vickie is a hero: “For us and for the parents in our community, our children are everything. We see her do so many jobs . . . she becomes an architect, an accountant, a psychologist, a nurse and just about any professional she needs to be for Hope Street to thrive. But even with all this, she still takes the time to listen to our individual problems and help us in any way she can.”
At Methodist Hospitalof Southern California. Charles V. Brown Jr. is a Senior Decision Support Analyst. He provides the data analysis to the managed care team and other key stakeholders to ensure patients, through their insurers, receive the best care at a competitive cost. Charles has worked tirelessly to provide the data analysis and innovation required to succeed in today's highly complex and competitive healthcare landscape. Today, more than ever, consumers as well as insurers are seeking the best outcomes at a fair and cost competitive price tag. Charles makes it happen.
Hortensia Sandoval De Carillo is an environmental service assistant at Riverside Community Hospital and she has the unique reputation of having a positively infectious personality! She is responsible for cleaning the hospital and following proper procedures for infection prevention. She does her job incredibly well, pays attention to every detail, and does it with a smile and kind word. She greets everyone she meets, maintains a positive attitude, and goes out of her way to help you if you need anything, from cleaning to keys! Hortensia is redefining the patient experience simply by modeling the way we all should be toward our patients and each other. She spreads happiness and joy every place she goes!
National Health Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving and enhancing the healthcare of the underserved by developing and supporting innovative programs that can become independently viable,
provide systemic solutions to gaps in healthcare access and delivery, and
have the potential to be replicated nationally.