Dawn Marsillo, director of the wound center at Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital, earned the organization’s pillar award for increasing employee engagement and improving patient care. She is pictured with Ed Gervain, vice president and chief operating officer of the hospital.
La Grange -- A man recently walked into the wound center at Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital in need of treatment. For the past 11 years, he suffered from 10 serious wounds that were a condition of his diabetes. He wasn’t expecting much relief. Dawn Marsillo knew better.
“After several hyperbaric oxygen therapy sessions, he was down to one or two hardly noticeable wounds,” Marsillo said. “When wounds like those don’t respond to regular medical care, we have advanced modalities that help patients heal and that’s wonderful to see.”
Marsillo, who lives in Chicago, has only been the director of the wound center for seven months. But in that short time, she has brought order to the very popular center, which has had more than 400 visits since January. For her commitment to all the details, including Adventist Midwest Health’s mission of extending the healing ministry of Christ, Marsillo was one of five Adventist Midwest Health leaders to receive the organization’s pillar award at the quarterly leadership development institute held in February.
“Dawn has worked tirelessly to bring organization and compassion to a very busy center,” said Ed Gervain, vice president and chief operating officer at Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital. “She settles for nothing less than the highest possible standard of patient care and that inspires everyone who works for her.”
At any given time, almost six million Americans suffer from chronic, non-healing wounds. Many are associated with complications from diabetes and vascular disorders, as well as pressure sores and traumatic wounds. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is one treatment for these problematic wounds. In the chamber, a patient inhales 100 percent oxygen which flows through the bloodstream and facilitates healing from the inside out. Patients typically undergo between 30 and 60 two-hour treatments in the hyperbaric chamber, which is filled with 100 percent pure oxygen, compared to the 21 percent oxygen in the air people breathe outside it. Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital began offering this service in January 2011. There was clearly a need for this therapy because there is now a waiting list, Marsillo said.
Marsillo not only oversees the hyperbaric oxygen therapy but also seven nurses, three technicians and a department secretary. She also works with seven different physicians who refer patients to the center.
“You see such a huge difference in patients,” Marsillo said. “It’s very emotional. Sometimes patients are with us for months and when they leave, we give them a little plant. When they see that plant, the patient knows he or she is finally healed and very often tears up. I have such a rewarding job, to be able to see results like that and work with a staff that makes it all possible.”
Pillar award nominations are solicited from Adventist Midwest Health’s senior leadership team. To be eligible, nominees must demonstrate commitment to the organization’s “S.H.A.R.E.” standards of behavior: Sense, Help, Acknowledge, Respect and Explain. They must also demonstrate measurable results on the quarterly goals set for their departments. These goals are organized under the seven categories, or pillars, of spiritual life, people, clinical, service, community, growth and stewardship.
Adventist Midwest Health includes Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital, Adventist GlenOaks Hospital, Adventist Hinsdale Hospital and Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital. To find a physician, visit www.keepingyouwell.com.
Media contact: Sheila Galloro, public relations specialist, Adventist Midwest Health, Sheila.Galloro@ahss.org; 630-856-0354.