Future of Midtown

Chicago and New York City are two great examples of American cities that have transformed over the past few decades into vibrant and prosperous places with thriving neighborhoods.

And Detroit is on a very similar trajectory.

During the past week on Doc in the D, we’ve had the opportunity to explore Midtown’s growth and development. In our fourth and final video in the Midtown “webisode,” we’ll look toward the future of Midtown Detroit and the revitalization of Detroit.

Today, I ask Sue Mosey, President of Midtown Detroit, Inc., a very important question: “Where will Midtown be 10-15 years from now?” Continue reading

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“Swing Like You Would Dance” Remembering Ben Davis

The weather is starting to change for the better these days, and all of us start thinking about getting outdoors.

When I think about getting outdoors, I think of golf. As you know from some prior blog posts, I do think of golf as a metaphor for many aspects of life and a window into our culture and society.

Ben Davis

Detroit Golf Legend Ben Davis

Golf also offers insights into how people respond to challenges and life events.

Just as real quality is what occurs when no one is looking, the self regulation of penalties in golf is an incredible reflection of character. If a person cheats at golf, what do you think they do in business or in other aspects of their life?

The reason for this post isn’t to convince you of the metaphysics or tangential aspects of a sport that has someone trying to hit a small ball into a cup; it is to pay tribute to a great golfer and even greater man, Ben Davis.

Mr. Davis recently passed on at the age of 101.

On May 9, he was memorialized by the naming of the street leading to Rackham Golf course in Huntington Woods. Forever, golfers will drive down Ben Davis Drive to play at a course that plays a significant role in Detroit history.

Rackham Golf Course, off the westbound I-696 service drive near the Detroit Zoo, opened in 1923 as a gift from the philanthropist Horace Rackham. Incorporated in the deed for the property, it was stipulated that the course would be open to anyone, of any color. Most golf courses in Detroit and in the Nation were restricted to African Americans and people of color. Rackham broke down this barrier .

It was only fitting that Mr. Davis, who learned the game as a caddie, became the first black person to be appointed as a head professional of a United States golf course.

People weave in and out of our lives, especially in medicine, and my relationship with Mr. Davis was just so. Continue reading

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Dr. Abouljoud Named Arab American of the Year

This past weekend, I attended the 42nd ACCESS (Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services) Anniversary Dinner, honoring Marwan Abouljoud, M.D., director of the Transplant Institute at Henry Ford Hospital, as Arab American of the Year.

ACCESS presents the Arab American of the Year Award to individuals or groups that exemplify the organization’s mission to empower and engage Arab Americans. This year’s other awardee was National Public Radio journalist Diane Rehm.

ACCESS – an organization that focuses on empowering and enabling individuals, families and communities to lead informed, productive, culturally sensitive and fulfilling lives – has a long-standing partnership with Henry Ford. We’ve worked together to provide free health screenings and education, and so much more, in the community. And, its executive director, Hassan Jaber, is a member of the Henry Ford Hospital and Health Network Board of Trustees.

As Arab American of the Year, Dr. Abouljoud will take his place among a distinguished group of past honorees that includes former White House correspondent Helen Thomas; U.S. Sen. Spencer Abraham; entertainers Casey Kasem and Tony Shalhoub; U.A.W. International President Stephen Yokich; U.S. Congressman Nick Rahall; the Arab American Anti-Discrimination Committee; and St. Jude Hospital.

Dr. Abouljoud has led transplant surgery at Henry Ford to national and international recognition. He performed the first split liver transplant in Michigan in 1996, and in 2000 developed the first adult-to-adult living donor liver transplant program in Michigan. Continue reading

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Leading the Way: The Future of Health Care

For the 2012 Henry Ford Hospital Grand Ball, we wanted to make a high-impact video that expresses the passion that we have for our great hospital’s past and its future.

Enter our creative partners from DBA. They donated their time and talent to create a video modeled after the popular TED talk format to serve as that vehicle.

Actors being far too expensive, we found someone else to read the lines. And read the lines…and read the lines. (How do actors do this every day?)

I hope the above video from the 2012 Grand Ball inspires, motivates and excites you about the future of health care at Henry Ford Hospital.

Change is coming, we are ready, we are Henry Ford Hospital.

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Detroit Top 10

The “Walk in My Shoes” experience with Delise Baker, a member of our concierge team at Henry Ford Hospital, inspired me to think about some of my favorite local spots in and around Detroit.

The DIA is No. 1 on my Top 10 list for places to see in Detroit. What’s your No. 1 pick for Detroit?

After all, one of the questions asked of every concierge – whether working at a hospital or a hotel – is “where should I visit while I’m in town?”

So here are two of my “Top 10” lists, one containing locations within Detroit city limits, and the other venturing out into the surrounding area of metro Detroit.

Feel free to add some of your favorite Detroit and metro Detroit locations in the comments section below.

Top 10 Things to See in the City of Detroit

1. The Detroit Institute of Arts (5200 Woodward Ave.)

2. Belle Isle (8109 East Jefferson Ave.)

3. Eastern Market (2934 Russell St.)

4. Fisher Building (3011 West Grand Blvd.)

5. Riverfront Walk (600 Renaissance Center)

6. Motown Historic Museum (2648 West Grand Blvd.)

Continue reading

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At Your Service

Ever show up at a new location for an important event or meeting, maybe a new city, say a hotel or large office building, and your first response is: “Where am I, and where do I go?”

I certainly have (unfortunately that is happening to me even when I go to an old location!).

No map or sign ever seems to be good enough to navigate, although I do like instructions like “follow the yellow arrow.” 

Isn’t it great when someone takes the time to direct you and escort you to where you need to go?

Coming to a large, hospital in an unfamiliar city to navigate your way through an already complex System, is … quite frankly, overwhelming.

As we work toward making it simple to get around a very large institution like Henry Ford Hospital, we have learned from the hotel industry that there is no substitute for a person to help patients through an anxiety.

Regardless of where you’re traveling, it is not uncommon to be assisted by a concierge team when checking into your hotel. You may be greeted by a concierge member who shares with you any necessary information you may need for your stay and he or she is available at any time to answer your questions and concerns.

When coming to a new hospital and clinic, this type of service is vital to lessen the stress and make sure the patient and family can concentrate on the medical issues and return to health.

I was given the opportunity to shadow Delise Baker, one of Henry Ford Hospital’s concierge members  from the Referring Physician’s Office.

With approximately 40 percent of outstate growth patients coming to the hospital from more than 35 miles away, this is not only an added customer service amenity for our patients – it’s a necessity. Continue reading

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Q: What Do You Hope to Accomplish?

I am going to ask you a question.

You have 15 seconds to answer it:

Looking back on your career and life 20 or 30 years from now, what do yo want to say you’ve accomplished?  Go.

Here’s my response to the question:

I want to have moved Henry Ford Hospital to greater national prominence for excellence in health care and transformed our immediate neighborhood into a vibrant safe and enriching community.

Now it’s your turn.

Please post your responses below in the comments section.

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Henry Ford Hospital Gives Thanks

It’s time to call in a refill on that prescription I wrote last Thanksgiving. No, not the one where I encourage extra helpings of turkey and pumpkin pie (though, it’s okay to indulge just for one day).

This prescription is about giving thanks, something that research has shown to have a positive impact on your emotional and physical health.

As you’ll see in this video, many members of our outstanding health care team have already filled the prescription and shared their reasons for being thankful.

So now it’s your turn.

To our team who gives so much each and every day to care for others at Henry Ford, please consider sharing in the comments section below what you’re thankful for this Thanksgiving.

And let’s not forget the “giving” part of Thanksgiving!

I know that many of you will use your time off work this holiday weekend to give back to the community. I’d love to read about your plans in the comments section.

I’d also like to give a heartfelt “thanks” to everyone on our health care team who will be working over the holiday weekend.  We are so grateful to have you on our team and for all that you give of yourselves to return our patients to good health.

Thank You and Happy Thanksgiving!

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The Annual Quality Expo

This week marked Henry Ford Health System’s 21st Annual Quality Expo.

The Quality Expo, hosted at Henry Ford Hospital, offers an opportunity for all of Henry Ford Health System to showcase the innovations and improvements made by our employees, departments and hospitals in the areas of health care quality, patient safety and care delivery.

Leo, a therapy dog at Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital, is one of the most remarkable therapists that I have ever encountered. Leo and HFWH’s Pet Therapy Program were featured at the Quality Expo.

Henry Ford is the only health care provider in southeast Michigan to host such an event.

The Quality Expo’s features 70 projects, all of which are aimed at reducing medical errors and improving patient safety, quality and satisfaction.

As always at this event, I was truly impressed, as I walked through the poster presentations and spoke with colleagues, by the tremendous work being done by our health care teams to continuously enhance quality and safety throughout the system.

I did stop to see one of our employees, Leo, a therapy dog at Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital.

Leo is one of the most remarkable therapists that I have ever encountered.  He is calm, friendly, and extraordinarily soothing, and part of a great program of pet therapy throughout our System.  Within minutes of being with him, all of my concerns and anxieties were gone.

(Of course, my own dog, Co Co, previously feature in Doc In the D, continues to be the one I confide in the most.  Co Co’s colleague, Mr. Mo, aka Uncle Mo, provides coverage as needed. Sometimes both are needed to “treat” me.)  Continue reading

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Every Vote Counts

Tuesday, Nov. 6  is an important day for all.

Patient Bernie Mack with hospital volunteer Lizette W. on Monday during the Bedside Voting Project.

It is a day that can change the course of our nation, merely by what you choose to do on that day.

Many in our country may be disillusioned by politics.  Many may feel that an individual vote may not matter in a sea of other voters in a national election.

I will not bore you with the details of the times in which one person, one action or one vote changed the course of an election or the course of history.

Others have fought, been imprisoned and died for the right to vote.  Each of our votes are a critical acknowledgment of the importance of those sacrifices.

I do not care for whom you vote.

I trust in the collective wisdom of our people to choose wisely and in the best interest of our City, State and Nation.

My message is simple: Take time to vote on Tuesday.

The voting process is so vital that Henry Ford Hospital has taken major efforts to ensure our patients who are hospitalized on election day can still get out their vote.

Our volunteers on Monday assisted countless patients with emergency ballot applications, faxing it to the patient’s respective clerk’s office where a ballot is generated, and then driving to the clerk’s office to pick up the ballot and returning the sealed ballot after the patient completes it.

It’s quite an amazing process.

I want to thank all of our volunteers and staff  involved with the bedside voting project for their work to make every vote count this election.

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