The Wellesley Dialysis Center provides hemodialysis for about 20 patients in two daily shifts. All patients are diagnosed with end stage renal disease. Many have been suffering for a long time and arrive via EMTs from nursing homes and other rehabilitation facilities. I have been a patient in this facility since July of 2013 and have the perspective of someone who’s had a long career in the allied health professions. (I’ve done mental health/social work, and direct care and administrative services for troubled youth and their families.)
Jillian Leonard consistently demonstrates a powerful combination of excellent clinical and professional skills. She maintains meaningful relationships with patients, many of whom are not easy to get along with; few folks want to be confined to a chair with two needles in their arm for four hours daily. I have seen Jillian develop warm relationships with a wide range of patients. This dialysis center is located in an upscale Boston suburb, but, interestingly, the clients served represent a wide variety of ethnic and racial backgrounds, many with limited English speaking abilities. To establish and maintain relationships with this diverse client group shows a clear level of interpersonal skill.
I might add that Ms. Leonard’s working skills with her team members and administrators are also to be admired. And, as anyone who has worked in a closely managed therapeutic environment will attest, sometimes getting along with your co-workers can be more of a challenge than working with patients.
—Nominated by Floyd Alwon