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YNHH wins prestigious national prize for community service

Foster McGaw

YNHH’s Caring Beyond the Bedside ad campaign highlights some of the efforts that earned the hospital the Foster G. McGaw Prize for Excellence in Community Service. These include the School-to-Career program, through which mentors like Nancy Busch, RN, (right) patient service manager, Women’s Center, help graduates like Priscilla Torres, (left) patient care associate, prepare for healthcare careers.

Yale New Haven Hospital has won the 2017 Foster G. McGaw Prize for Excellence in Community Service, one of the nation’s most esteemed honors in health care.

Each year, just one of the more than 5,500 U.S. hospitals receives the prize, presented by the American Hospital Association (AHA) to a hospital that has distinguished itself by efforts to improve the health and well-being of the people in its communities. YNHH will receive a $100,000 prize to support its community initiatives.

“This is an enormous honor for Yale New Haven Hospital and the many people and organizations we partner with,” said Richard D’Aquila, president. “Our mission has always focused on improving the health and well-being not only of our patients, but everyone in the communities we serve.”

The prize was created in 1986 in honor of Foster G. McGaw, who founded the American Hospital Supply Corp. and was renowned for his philanthropic activities. American Hospital Supply merged with Baxter International, Inc., which funds the prize with the AHA.

The 2017 McGaw prize recognizes YNHH’s work in five areas: 

  • Nurturing healthy kids – including school-based health centers and programs that provide free or affordable prenatal and pediatric care to women and children in need.
  • Creating educational opportunities – including partnerships with local schools and colleges, support for New Haven Promise scholarships and school-to-career opportunities.
  • Revitalizing local neighborhoods – including financial and volunteer support for Habitat for Humanity and the YNHH Home Ownership Made Easier (HOME) program for hospital employees purchasing homes in New Haven.
  • Working to end homelessness – including collaboration with Columbus House on the Medical Respite program, support of overnight warming centers and other efforts.
  • Partnering with local recruiters – including hiring qualified local residents for hospital positions and collaborating with organizations such as the Connecticut Center for Arts and Technology and Workforce Alliance.
The Foster McGaw prize specifically recognizes YNHH efforts that target the social determinants of health, including education, employment, housing and safe neighborhoods.

“These factors can profoundly affect a person’s health, which is why the hospital has expanded its involvement in a wide variety of programs,” said Andrew Orefice, program coordinator, Community and Government Relations.

He noted that while the Foster McGaw award recognizes some of YNHH’s more visible efforts, the hospital is involved in many other community projects – from health fairs at local schools to charity walks to supporting local sports teams.

“All of these efforts, and those included the Foster McGaw prize, are evidence of Yale New Haven’s commitment to being much more than the ‘local hospital,’” said Kyle Ballou, executive director, Community and Government Relations. “We are a member of the Greater New Haven community, and we are dedicated to helping the people who live here thrive.”