As the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child. In health care, it takes a team to care for a patient. From food services to greeters at the front desk to nurses and physicians, every associate at Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System plays a role in the care of our patients and the compassion shown to our guests.
To show our appreciation of the work our associates provide, Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System (SRHS) recognizes a Leader of the Year and Associate of the Year as part of the annual National Hospital Week. The announcements were made at a dinner honoring employees on Tuesday, May 11, at the Spartanburg Marriott.
National Hospital Week celebrates hospitals and those who support the health of their communities through dedication and compassionate care.
Leaders of the Year
One of the Leaders of the Year is Walter Bennett, director of Pelham Medical Center operations. Bennett constantly says, “My job is to help you achieve success, and I will always do my best to make sure you are as successful as possible.”
Throughout his time with the healthcare system, he has exemplified this quote.
Bennett oversees financial aspects of Pelham Medical Center and offers suggestions for decreasing costs. For many years, he helped organize associate-related activities to build a trusting relationship between colleagues. Bennett continues to speak with associates on various shifts to gain their input and perspectives on how things are going in order to keep morale high.
He has foresight to see that changes sometimes need to be made and can make it happen. Bennett teaches the true meaning of service as he practices servant leadership day after day.
One of the Leaders of the Year is Sharon Caston, manager of pediatric rehabilitation. Caston has often called her job “a calling.” Caston is consistently compassionate to everyone; taking ownership and pride in the organization. Throughout her day, she always has a smile on her face and a warm welcome.
She works tirelessly in collaboration with community organizations to promote improved health. These collaborations have led to many successful partnerships that have benefited our patients.
Caston looks for resources for families who are unable to afford the medically necessary equipment needed for treatment. Over the years, she has worked closely with the Judy Bradshaw Fund, which enables our therapists to obtain therapeutic toys for children, which may not otherwise be covered by insurance.
Caston has helped to strengthen the Spartanburg community.
Associate of the Year
This year’s Associate of the Year is Mareka Stevens, community healthcare worker with the Center for Family Medicine and the Center for Family Medicine in Chesnee. Stevens may not see her day-to-day actions as remarkable, but her colleagues beg to differ.
This story begins when she and one of her patients developed a friendship during the patient’s hospital stay. This caring friendship continued following the patient’s discharge. Stevens then developed a pattern of reaching out to the patient on a regular basis, to make sure that she was okay.
One day she called the patient and the phone rang and rang. After several attempts to reach the patient, she still couldn’t reach her. She then quickly contacted the police and the landlord. Upon arrival to the patient’s residence, the patient was found unresponsive and was immediately transported to the hospital. It was later learned that she had been there for four days.
Without Stevens’ diligence, the ending of this story would be a different one.