For almost four years, I’ve had the privilege to serve as News+Notes editor and a member of the Strategic Communications team. This is the last edition that I’ll be serving in that role, but I’m thankful to be staying with the UF Health Communications division in my new position with the Evelyn F. and William L. McKnight Brain Institute at UF.
I came to UF Health with minimal knowledge of the health care industry. Over the years, I’ve learned more than I could have imagined, both personally and professionally. If you regularly read this column, you know that just weeks after I joined UF Health, my daughter was diagnosed with a Wilms tumor — a rare form of kidney cancer. After undergoing surgery (removing the tumor and a kidney), and months of radiation and chemotherapy, she is now almost three years in remission.
During our daughter’s journey, we spent countless hours in the hospital and encountered dozens of faculty and staff members from a wide range of teams. No matter what floor of the hospital we were on or what facility we were visiting, there was a common denominator — amazing care and wonderful people.
I’ll never forget my co-workers visiting us in the hospital with flowers and stuffed animals, pitching in for gift cards and offering endless support. They didn’t even know me very well yet, but treated us like family.
This personal experience with a life-threatening family health issue inspired me and made me so appreciative of the amazing things that happen at UF Health every day. It has been an honor to tell your stories, to highlight your units, departments and patients, and to keep you informed about what’s happening around the organization.
This edition of News+Notes has always been one of my favorites to work on, as we feature employees who are military veterans in honor of Veterans Day. I encourage you to read about these brave individuals and how UF Health benefits from their backgrounds and experiences. In this edition, we also highlight how our new heart and neuro hospitals, which open for patients on Dec. 10, will be a tremendous asset to our community and beyond.
Thank you for reading News+Notes, and for all you do to improve the lives of our patients!