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Health Care Heroes: Community Achievement

By Staff Reports, posted Oct 21, 2022

Honors an individual or team who successfully implemented a program addressing a problem in health care administration, delivery or community outreach.


KELLY EZZELL

Title: Child medical evaluation provider 

Organization: The Carousel Center

What the nominator said: “Kelly Ezzell is the epitome of a child and family advocate. She is the embodiment of what an advocate should be; she is an ally, a system of support, an advocate for justice, diversity, and inclusion, and a voice for the voiceless, on top of being a forensic nurse practitioner serving our most vulnerable population, the abused and neglected children in our community. Her relationship with the community and MDT partners is unparalleled, as she is the spirit of collaboration and never ceases strengthening the resilience of children, their families, and the CAC model. Kelly goes above and beyond to help kiddos and their families who come through our center on a daily basis, her passion, perseverance, and commitment are unsurpassable, always ensuring children receive the care they need, while reducing barriers and promoting justice.”

– Franchesca Ramirez, The Carousel Center

CANDY LEE

Title: Memory Partners program manager

Organization: Lower Cape Fear LifeCare

What the nominator said: “Candy Lee joined Lower Cape Fear LifeCare in March 2019 to solve a problem: a lack of community services and support for caregivers of individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. The Memory Partners Program was born out of families receiving referrals to hospice and palliative care, only to be ineligible. Candy commends the organization for being visionary by looking at how to support families who were not eligible for end-of-life services. From the beginning, the Memory Partners Program was unique because a Registered Nurse (RN) was put in place to provide free consultative services. … Not only did Candy navigate the challenges of a start-up program, but she also navigated the COVID-19 pandemic. … Since March of 2019, Candy and her team have served over 475 individuals in our community (including caregivers and persons with ADRD) through education, support groups, respite, and other support services.”
“Candy started her career in Wilmington in 1997 and has been in the field of geriatrics since 1989. In 2010, Candy helped start North Carolina’s first PACE (Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly) program in Wilmington.”

– Missy Combs, chief clinical officer, Lower Cape Fear LifeCare


SARAH C. RIDOUT

Title: Healthy Opportunities Program director

Organization: Cape Fear HOP, Community Care of the Lower Cape Fear

What the nominator said: “Sarah was able to assist Community Care of the Lower Cape Fear in obtaining the Healthy Opportunities Pilot program from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. Sarah and her team are assisting Medicaid members in Southeastern North Carolina (New Hanover, Pender, Brunswick, Bladen, Columbus and Pender counties) with meeting a person’s Social Determinants of Health needs. Sarah and her team assist the community with coordination and collaboration with different community organizations. Sarah’s team uses nonmedical interventions related to transportation, housing, food and interpersonal violence insecurities. Sarah has been instrumental in helping community members become productive by alleviating barriers that may impede a person’s physical or mental health growth.”

– Richard Berg, community health worker with Carolina Complete Health
 


Read more about all of the 2022 Health Care Heroes finalists here.

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