JOHNNY COX, PhD, BSN
Three generations of ministry leaders have been engaged in a struggle to retain the soul of Catholic health care, and the intensity is greater now than ever. They have endured this struggle since the rise of the for-profit health care services sector in the early 1980s, when then-Editor-in-Chief of The New England Journal of Medicine Dr. Arnold S. Relman named and proclaimed the new medical-industrial complex as the most important health care development of the time. He described it as "a large and growing network of private corporations engaged in the business of supplying health-care services to patients for a profit — services heretofore provided by nonprofit institutions or individual practitioners."
When treating older adults in the U.S., especially those nearing end-of-life, palliative and hospice care are some of the best options available — yet they remain underused.
The creators of Radiance, a virtual reality program, initially designed it as a mixed media art piece and displayed it in a Savannah, Georgia, museum.
I went in for a routine screening as a patient years ago, having just written for CHA about the latest electronic medical record advances, to have a care provider write some of my details on a sticky note and slip it in her pocket to add to my files later.
This past summer, CHA's Board of Trustees adopted a new vision statement: We Will Empower Bold Change to Elevate Human Flourishing. The vision statement will guide the development of CHA's new Fiscal Year 2024-26 strategic plan.
CLAY O'DELL, PhD
Improving the availability and quality of mental and behavioral health services remains one of the most challenging aspects of health policy and advocacy in the United States.
ALICE BONNER, PhD, RN, and SUMIRE MAKI
When was the last time you went to a nursing home, either as a visitor, resident, legislator, provider or researcher? For many people, the answer is, "Never" or, "I can't remember."
JILL FISK, MATM
In Catholic health care, the integration of mission, vision and values across the continuum of care is our distinction. It is what creates our culture and sets us apart for both our staff and patients.
AMIE COCKRELL, RN, MBA-HCM, CPHQ
A groundbreaking community-based initiative in Longview, Texas, is gaining local, state and national recognition in its mission to reduce the need for use of emergency acute care services by high-risk community members.
NATHANIEL BLANTON HIBNER, PhD
Have you ever experienced a moment when firmly held beliefs were challenged, and you saw the world through a different lens? In theology, this transformation is known as a "hermeneutic of experience."
REV. DAVID J. EBACHER, MA, BCC and KARLA KEPPEL, MA
SR. DOROTHY THUM, RSM
A man was brought into the emergency room at Mercy Health — St. Charles Hospital in Oregon, Ohio, suffering from hyperglycemia. He had rapid breathing, confusion, excess sugar in his urine and heart palpitations, and was admitted to the ICU.
When Julie Rehmeyer recently had a sudden flare-up of her complex, chronic conditions, she sought care at her local hospital, a place she goes only for the most urgent emergencies. "I had a pretty horrendous experience just due to a lack of familiarity with my condition and misinterpretation of what was happening," she shared. "Because of that experience, I feel a certain kind of ongoing peril."
MICHAEL J. O'LOUGHLIN
Sam Moore needed help. Diagnosed with HIV in 1997, the New Orleans native kept his health in check with daily medication, something of a miracle considering the devastation HIV and AIDS unleashed on marginalized communities in the 1980s and 1990s.
ROBERT LIPPMAN, DBH, MSW
"Thank you," the woman said as she entered the clinic. Those two words were the simple prologue to a heartfelt story. She proceeded to tell me that earlier in the year she had come to the clinic as a patient when she was experiencing homelessness and addiction to get a free two-hour bus pass. During her visit, we asked if she would like to use the clinic shower. She still remembered how that water washed off more than a little grime — it empowered her to manifest a new belief in herself. She then used her bus pass to get to a local rehab facility. "Today," she said, "I am proud that I have been clean for three months and am no longer homeless."
CHRISTINA J. SCHAUER, MSN, ARNP, ACNS-BC
When I joined the U.S. Army in 1999, I never envisioned myself being sent to war. However, on September 11, 2001, the world drastically changed, and by May of 2003, I was boarding a plane to Southwest Asia. That year — as a combat medic with the 389th Engineer Battalion in Baghdad, Iraq — was the part of my military experience, if not of my life, that led me to some deep realizations.
PAULO G. PONTEMAYOR
The early days of the COVID-19 pandemic posed numerous challenges to society, as communities and governments around the world worked to mitigate the health and economic fallout from the virus. We can remember how, in 2020, states began to shut down schools, restaurants and places of worship to help prevent its spread. We can probably even remember the fateful day of January 31, 2020, when Alex Azar, the secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, declared COVID-19 a public health emergency. Immediately after this declaration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institutes of Health and other federal entities began to coordinate a response, developing testing, researching therapeutics and working to make vaccines available.
As the world watched events unfold during Russia's 2022 invasion of Ukraine, many CHA members inquired about the most effective ways to provide humanitarian support. CHA hosted multiple networking events to share best practices and hear and connect with members and those already on the ground working in Ukraine and surrounding countries.
SR. DORIS GOTTEMOELLER, RSM
Years ago, I was scheduled to present a breakout session on Catholic health care at a national meeting for the heads of diocesan priests' councils. I took my place in front of the group, poised to share my presentation and prepared remarks. But before I could speak, one of the priests called out, "I think we should sell all the Catholic hospitals and give the money to the poor." Amidst a rumble of laughter and some raised eyebrows, I retorted, "And I'm here to tell you why you're wrong!" I'm not sure how many converts I made that day, but the challenge has never left me.