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Cancer data manager recognized for commitment to mission
Contact: Lisa Parro, senior public relations specialist, Adventist Midwest Health 630-312-7508 Lisa.parro@ahss.org

La Grange – As regional manager of cancer data for Adventist Midwest Health, Clarissa Moholick, MHSA, CCRP, CTR, plays an important role in ensuring hospital patients receive quality care, from diagnosis to treatment and beyond.

Moholick maintains contact with former patients, even those who have moved out of the area, in order to track survival rates. This means the follow-up continues for the life of the patient. Data on outcomes is compared with national research. Moholick also coordinates more than 30 clinical trials that are available to Adventist patients, enabling them to receive cutting-edge treatment without traveling a long distance. Clinical trials have helped with the introduction of more effective drugs as well as digital mammography.

“We’ve seen dramatic improvements over the years,” Moholick said. “Around 85 percent of our former patients are now cancer free. Some have been cancer free for decades, and at least one has survived more than 40 years. This is a huge accomplishment.”

For her commitment to Adventist Midwest Health’s mission of extending the healing ministry of Christ, Moholick was one of five Adventist Midwest Health leaders to receive the organization’s pillar award at the quarterly leadership development institute held in January.

Moholick also spearheaded the effort that brought national accreditation in breast health to Adventist Hinsdale and Adventist La Grange Memorial hospitals in 2009. Only 11 hospitals in Illinois have attained this achievement.

“We provide outstanding care for women with breast disease, and for all of our patients who are battling cancer,” the Joliet resident said. “Our research tells us that our patients are living longer and longer, and they are living cancer free. It means a great deal to know the experts have recognized this.”

Moholick also serves as regional manager for Adventist Midwest Health’s research review board and research support. She is based at Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital. On a day-to-day basis, Moholick coordinates all cancer programs and activities for the healthcare system’s four suburban Chicago hospitals, bearing much of the responsibility in ensuring the accreditation of all cancer programs.

“Clarissa cares deeply about helping our hospitals provide world-class care,” said Dr. Gary Lipinski, chief medical officer. “Her research has helped identify ways to improve treatment for our patients. She exemplifies a ‘can-do’ spirit and does the work of three people.”

Moholick particularly enjoys coordinating the annual Cancer Survivors Day celebration; some 2,000 patients who were treated at Adventist Hinsdale and Adventist La Grange Memorial hospitals attend the event every summer.

“Cancer Survivors Day inspires not only survivors and their families but also hospital staff and the community,” she said.

In addition to achieving accreditation specific to the hospitals’ breast cancer program, Adventist Hinsdale and Adventist La Grange Memorial hospitals’ cancer programs as a whole recently earned three-year accreditations “with commendation” from the Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons (ACoS). Only 25 percent of U.S. cancer programs are accredited by the Commission on Cancer.

Moholick serves on the steering committee of the Chicago Breast Cancer Consortium, which is drafting initiatives to improve early detection. She is a guest lecturer on health information management at Moraine Valley Community College.

An Adventist Midwest Health employee for 20 years, Moholick has been in her current position for 10 years. She earned a bachelor’s degree in health information management at Illinois State University in Normal and a master’s degree in health services administration at the University of St. Francis in Joliet.

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.