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Yale-New  Haven Hospital

Service Excellence Heroes Program

Yale-New Haven Hospital showcases employees who exemplify Service Excellence

Employees may nominate fellow employees to be selected as a YNHH Service Excellence Hero. Heroes photos along with their brief bios are displayed throughout the hospital.

Rose Andreoli

I am Rose Andreoli, outpatient verification representative.

I have worked at Yale-New Haven Hospital for more than 20 years, and for the past eight years in the admitting office for Adult Outpatient Surgery Services. I meet with patients on the day of their operation to see if they need to update their insurance and billing information. Problem-solving is my thing. If they have any questions or problems, I can advise them or call one of my many contacts for answers. I don't want the patients to have any extra pressure, so I try to put their minds at ease. And regardless of their financial situation, I treat all patients the same. My mom always said to me, "Rose, you have to respect every person." Customer service is what I enjoy doing, so it's rewarding to make patients feel secure.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Joseph Ankrah

I am Joseph Ankrah, nuclear medicine technologist.

Thirteen years ago, I moved to New Haven from Ghana with my family. While serving with the military police in Ghana, I had received Red Cross training and eventually studied at Gateway Community College and YNHH to become a nuclear medicine technologist. Our unit, at Smilow Cancer Hospital, performs specialized imaging procedures to examine various organs and help diagnose cancer and other diseases. I greet each of my patients with a friendly smile, introduce myself and lead them to a room equipped with a high-tech imaging machine. I talk to them and calm any anxieties they might have during the procedure. Working together with a great team, I'm challenged every day to go above and beyond for my patients. I want them to walk away from here and feel like there is a tomorrow.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Piper Brien

I am Piper Brien, RN, clinical bed manager.

After three years as a traveler nurse, I joined Yale-New Haven in 1993. I worked in several units before becoming one of seven registered nurses in a new bed-management program, part of the hospital's Safe Patient Flow initiative. Basically, we're responsible for making sure that every inpatient has a bed, whether they come through the general admitting office, the Emergency Department or Y Access, the center which helps physicians from outside YNHH transfer and admit their patients here. This is a very busy hospital, with more than 950 beds, and getting the right patient in the right bed at the right time requires a lot of creativity and problem-solving. Every day can be stressful, so I approach my job with professionalism, but also with a sense of humor. My motto is, "It's all good."

I am Yale-New Haven.

Sarah Brockingham

I am Sarah Brockington, food service ambassador.

I recently celebrated my 15th year in Food and Nutrition Services at Yale-New Haven. As an Ambassador for our "At Your Request" service – which allows patients to place orders from a restaurant-style menu – I deliver freshly made meals to rooms anywhere in the hospital. An important part of my job is making sure the orders get there within 45 minutes, but I don't just bring patients food. I always ask how they're feeling and if I can do something to make them more comfortable. I'll stop whatever I'm doing and get them anything they need. And I smile at all times, no matter what. It really makes me feel good when I can do a little something extra to make a patient's day better. That's just me.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Will Cushing

I am Will Cushing, physician assistant.

My career at Yale-New Haven began in 2002 after I graduated from the physician assistant program at Yale School of Medicine. Since then, I have been fortunate to work on the Hospitalist Service, a team of clinicians who serve as an extension of primary care practices from the surrounding communities. We have the privilege of caring for patients while they are in the hospital, which involves collaborating with other YNHH staff and specialists. I am responsible for coordinating my patients' care, ranging from carrying out treatment plans to arranging their seamless discharge back into the outpatient setting. It is very satisfying to be the point person for my patients. Ultimately, that's what helps them feel comfortable and cared for.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Rose Deis

I am Rosa Deis, environmental services associate.

I am assigned to the Acute Care Unit for elderly patients, where my job is keeping the rooms clean. I like to have pleasant little conversations with "my patients," as I call them, while I'm working in the room. I enjoy giving them something to smile and laugh about and hopefully get their minds off of why they're in the hospital. I consider that part of my job, too—and it's just part of who I am. It makes me feel good. I also interact with the nurses, patient care associates and other staff in the unit. We're all here for the same reason—for the patients and their families—so we have to work together as a team.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Louie Dunphy

I am Louise Dunphy, RN, clinical nurse.

I started working in the Newborn Special Care Unit right out of college, and 30 years later, this is my second home. We take care of newborns transferred here from delivery, many of them premature, until they're ready to go home. Over the years, as technology and medicine have advanced, our success rates have greatly improved. Most of my duties surround bedside care not only of the infants, but also their parents, because they're our patients, too. Each day, the nursing staff evaluates the babies, attends rounds with physicians and administers care, while always communicating with parents. Nurses, doctors, social workers and other staff collaborate as a team, which is what I like most about working in this unit—along with seeing smiling parents go home with their precious infants.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Mary Gauld

I am Mary Gauld, business associate.

I was a teacher for 20 years before becoming a business associate in Pediatrics at Yale-New Haven. After 21 years here, I've found the two professions to be remarkably similar, critically important and personally satisfying. In this unit, I see children who are struggling to get well, compared to those I saw striving to learn in the classroom. Both environments allow me to interact with parents who are concerned with their children's future. From my position at the unit's front desk, I manage communications among medical staff and patients and parents, and direct people to where they can get information – not unlike a principal's role. I don't dispense medication or insert IVs, but I can be tremendously supportive and make sure things run smoothly. And to still be part of a caring team is just…heaven.

I am Yale-New Haven.

James Greene

I am James Greene, environmental services associate.

My job is to keep the Atrium, inside the hospital's main entrance, tidy, nice and clean. I appreciate and take pride in my work, knowing that the Atrium makes an important first impression on patients, their families and visitors. I feel more or less like an ambassador for Yale-New Haven. I've always been a people person who gets along with everyone. So our Service Excellence "10-5" initiative is easy for me. When I come within 10 feet of someone, I make eye contact. Within five feet, I greet them and smile. I understand that when sick people come here, they expect to feel comfortable and welcome, in a clean environment. I want them to trust that the wonderful staff here will get the job done—and that they'll go home feeling better.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Shelley Harrigan

I am Shelley Harrigan, RN, clinical nurse.

When I get up in the morning, I come to the hospital not to give 100 percent. I come to give 250 percent. That's what I told my interviewer when I was hired, and 25 years later, I still mean it. I am a nurse in the Adult Primary Care Center, where we see people who are underinsured or have no health insurance. Our physicians and nursing staff provide comprehensive medical services, treating patients with minor and chronic illnesses. We treat the whole patient. We're strong advocates for our patients, so when they leave the center, we can connect them with various support services within our community. The greatest part of working at Yale-New Haven is having the opportunity to be a part of outstanding nursing care.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Mary Jones

I am Mary Jones, patient/family liaison.

I was born at Yale-New Haven Hospital and have proudly worked here since 1994. For nearly five years, I've welcomed family members in the operating rooms' waiting area with a simple greeting: "Good morning, my name is Mary, and I'm going to take great care of you while the medical staff takes great care of your patient." YNHH schedules up to 100 surgeries in a day, so it can be challenging to get everyone settled in. Each family gets a beeper so I can page them when the patient goes to the recovery area. After the operation, I arrange for them to meet with the surgeon in a private consult room, then direct them to recovery. To keep the stress level down, I have another favorite saying: "If you want a smile, come see me."

I am Yale-New Haven.

Lauren Lyons

I am Lauren Lyons, senior pediatric physical therapist.

I am the senior pediatric physical therapist at Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital. I work with children ranging from newborns to teenagers and 20-somethings, and coordinate other therapists on our team. It's my job not only to help patients overcome physical impairments but also to integrate them back with their families and communities. What I like most about my job is that there's never a typical day. It's different all the time. Plus, I work throughout the Children's Hospital, so I treat patients and collaborate with other care providers in all the units. I enjoy teaching patients and their families physical rehabilitation skills they can do at home. The cool thing about rehab is that it gives them some autonomy and a sense of empowerment in this very controlled environment.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Christian Medina

I am Christian Medina, patient transport associate.

I am part of the team that transports patients throughout the hospital, by wheelchair, stretcher or bed. I call it "worldwide transportation," because after seven years on the job, I know my way around all the different buildings and departments as well as does anyone at Yale-New Haven. The first thing I do is introduce myself to the patient and let him or her know where we're going. I like to have friendly conversations with them, and if they or family members have any medical questions, I direct them to a nurse. I always keep patients' safety and comfort in mind, and I'll do anything to accommodate them and provide excellent service. I treat all patients as if they were someone in my own family.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Sharon Moales

I am Sharon Moales, licensed clinical social worker.

It may sound odd, but I love working in crisis situations. That's what we face every day in the Emergency Department, where you never know what's going to happen next. Social Work gets involved right away. My immediate goal is to speak with patients and their families to quickly figure out what happened and to provide support. I then work hand in hand with an interdisciplinary team—including physicians, nursing staff, law enforcement and other community providers—to assess what further care and interaction might be necessary. In addition to knowledge and experience, my job requires empathy in order to understand patients' needs and establish trust so that I can help them. For me, that is the greatest achievement of being a social worker at Yale-New Haven Hospital for the past 23 years.

I am Yale-New Haven.

George Paci

I am George Paci, RN, infection prevention specialist.

I am a registered nurse by profession, though for the past eight years, I've been part of the team at Yale-New Haven that's responsible for preventing hospital-acquired infections. We oversee YNHH's 37 inpatient units, as well as its nearly 100 outpatient facilities throughout the region. In addition to patients and visitors, we deal with thousands of fellow employees. I supervise the day-to-day clinical activities, which include outbreak investigations that, with the aid of modern forensics and DNA testing, resemble some of television's CSI cases. My job also entails promoting employees' compliance with the hospital's various infection-prevention initiatives and protocols. One of the most important – and effective – programs is our hand-hygiene campaign, which encourages constant attention to personal behavior. It's a never-ending battle with germs, and everybody at YNHH is on guard.

I am Yale-New Haven.

Ronald Salem

I am Ronald Salem, MD, surgeon.

I grew up in Zimbabwe, where I attended medical school, then did my residency in England. In 1985, I received a fellowship at Dana Farber Cancer Institute in oncology. Five years later, I joined a new surgical oncology section being launched at Yale-New Haven — and the rest has been an extraordinarily rewarding history. Initially, I never thought I'd go into cancer surgery, but ultimately found that I greatly enjoy being involved in patients' cancer care at a time when there is good potential for cure. I was fortunate to be involved with the design of Smilow Cancer Hospital, which is such a wonderful, patient- and family-oriented facility. As section chief, I lead a team of outstanding people and have the privilege of working with the best and brightest. My greatest reward is when patients return years later and their cancer is cured. That is truly a victory.

I am Yale-New Haven.

  • Rose Andreoli
  • Joseph Ankrah
  • Piper Brien
  • Sarah Brockingham
  • Will Cushing
  • Rose Deis
  • Louise Dunphy
  • Mary Gauld
  • james Greene
  • Shelley Harrigan
  • Mary Jones
  • Lauren Lyons
  • Christian Medina
  • Sharon Moales
  • George Paci
  • Ronald Salem