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Bayhealth announces 2019 Spirit of Planetree Award winners

Staff Writer
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times

Bayhealth recently announced the winners of its Spirit of Planetree Awards, which recognize those who go above and beyond to promote person-centered care and improve the patient experience.

The awards, which are given annually and are based on nominations, include Caregiver, Physician Champion and Pet Therapy Animal.

The 2019 winners are:

— Caregiver: Akiya Lewis, Bayhealth Hospital, Sussex Campus. One nominator wrote, “Akiya is constantly rounding on patients, offering little comforts that mean so much to them. She extends that same care to the patient’s family and visitors. She consistently goes above and beyond for her patients and coworkers to make sure her unit is the best possible place to be. Supporting her teammates and peers means providing person-centered care because she knows that when they are taken care of, they can take better care of their patients.”

— Physician Champion, Kent Campus: John Fink. One nominator wrote, “Throughout his career, Dr. Fink has been intimately involved with quality improvement projects at the clinics, private offices, hospitals, and nursing homes where he has worked. Even though he is now part of administration and sees patients on a part-time basis, he still will take the time to respond to patients’ needs. Dr. Fink is easily approachable and open to new ideas that will improve patient outcomes and the patient experience. He is a true role model for person-centered care at Bayhealth for physicians, staff and his patients because of his passion, patience, approachability, respect and expertise.”

— Physician Champion, Sussex Campus: Loretta Edmondson. One nominator shared the following comment from a patient, “Dr. Loretta Edmondson truly cares about her patients and their family members. I am sure I would not be here today if she were not my doctor. She is a true activist for her patients and makes sure they receive the best care possible, stepping in to call specialists and/or insurance companies if needed.”

— Pet Therapy Animal: Brutus. One nominator wrote, “Brutus and his owner, Sharon Conley, are a team in a true sense of the word. They mentor new pet therapy groups, cheer on veteran teams and ensure all they meet have a better day. On any given day, they will come into contact with approximately 60 patients, visitors and staff members. When the Child Care Center requested pet therapy teams visit during the Week of the Young Child, Sharon and Brutus were there spreading love and snuggles to more than 90 students.”

For more, visit bayhealth.org/planetree.