Grossmont Healthcare District announces 2011 Healthcare Heroes
The Grossmont Healthcare District (GHD), a public agency that supports many non-profit, health-related community programs and services in San Diego’s East County region, has honored five East County residents with a 2011 Healthcare Hero award.
Now in its fifth year, GHD’s Healthcare Hero awards program recognizes and rewards front-line volunteers, caregivers and other individuals who help advance the delivery of health care and improve the quality of life for East County residents, said Debbie McElravy, GHD 2011 board president. Recipients of a 2011 Healthcare Hero Award included:
-- Ruth Anfangar has been delivering meals to homebound seniors and younger disabled adults for the past 40 years. Using her own car and gasoline, the 83-year-old San Carlos resident has driven an estimated 40,000 miles during the past four decades and dedicated several thousands hours in volunteer service on behalf of Jewish Family Service of San Diego (JFSSD) and its Foodmobile program.
-- Patricia Bull of La Mesa is a retired Navy nurse who has volunteered over the past four years at a free medical clinic operated by Volunteers in Medicine (VIM), a non-profit that brings together medical professionals and patients who don’t have health insurance. Her experience has helped streamline operations and increase services to patients at the clinic in El Cajon, according to VIM officials.
-- Dr. Michael John Halls is a plastic surgeon on staff at Sharp Grossmont Hospital and Alvarado Hospital who co-founded Doctors Offering Charitable Services (DOCS), a San Diego-based non-profit agency that provides reconstructive surgery and continuing care to unfunded, needy patients otherwise unable to obtain treatment for disfiguring medical conditions and severe injuries. Halls not only donates about one dozen surgeries a year but also recruits other physicians and coordinates partnerships with hospitals and clinicians to facilitate additional surgeries depending on patient needs. Some patients include victims of accidents, abuse, war, and disease.
-- Jack Shuk of La Mesa is a volunteer spiritual counselor and Eucharistic minister who has volunteered more than 1,000 hours since October 2007 with San Diego Hospice and The Institute for Palliative Medicine (SDHIPM). A former Franciscan priest, Shuk works directly with hospice patients and their families at SDHIMP’s 24-bed facility for patients whose pain or symptoms can be best managed in a medical setting. He worked on staff at SDHIMP from 2001 until his retirement in September 2007, and then began volunteering the very next month.
-- Dr. Philip “Flip” Szold has practiced pediatric medicine in the East County since 1977. His passion in preventing childhood obesity and promoting active living has led him to volunteer for the past 12 years on the board of the Boys and Girls Clubs of East County (BGCEC). He has served as BGCEC’s board president and chairman of the annual East County Children’s Ball fundraiser, and is currently chairman of “It Just Takes One,” a fundraising campaign.
The 2011 Healthcare Hero awards were presented on a luncheon held on Wednesday, May 11, at Sycuan Resort in El Cajon.
Grossmont Healthcare District, formed in 1952 to build and operate Grossmont Hospital, serves as landlord of the hospital, including ownership of the property and buildings on behalf of East County taxpayers. The District is governed by a five-member board of directors, each elected to four-year terms, who represent more than 500,000 people residing within the District's 750 square miles in San Diego's East County. GHD also operates the Dr. William C. Herrick Community Health Care Library, a public library specializing in health research information, located at 9001 Wakarusa St., La Mesa. For more information about GHD, visit www.grossmonthealthcare.org.
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