UMass Amherst Receives Two ‘Healthcare Heroes’ Awards from BusinessWest : UMass Amherst

Two UMass Amherst groups have been recognized as Healthcare Heroes 2022 in BusinessWest’s annual series, which aims to identify and celebrate significant contributions to the region’s health and well-being.


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ServiceNet’s Elaine Marieb Center for Nursing and Engineering Innovation and Enrichment Center and Strive Clinic and its partners at Springfield College and UMass Amherst (Communication Disorders Department at the School of Public Health and Health Sciences) are two of eight 2022 Healthcare Heroes, who were selected for her “convincing and inspiring” work in healthcare.

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The Center for Nursing and Engineering Innovation — led by co-directors Karen Giuliano, associate professor of nursing, and Frank Sup, associate professor of mechanical and industrial engineering — was recognized in the Innovation category. She held her first symposium on campus last week.

Business West cited the center’s collaborative research by nurses and engineers to improve the safety and ease of use of smart IV pumps in hospitals, most of which are outdated. The center is leading the nation in efforts to develop pumps with simplified designs, using new technologies to reduce the inconveniences and inaccuracies that lead to medical errors. The center’s research also focuses on the application of robotics to improve healthcare.

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The Faculty of Communication Disorders and the graduate students honored in the Collaborative category provide speech pathology services for adults with brain injury caused by trauma or disease at the Enrichment Center and Strive Clinic. ServiceNet’s collaboration with UMass Amherst and Springfield College not only provides excellent rehabilitation care for people with brain injuries, the Business West article said, but also helps educate the next generation of healthcare professionals.

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Lisa Sommers, clinical director and clinical associate professor of communication disorders, told Business West that working with the Enrichment Center is a natural fit for the first-year graduate students’ clinical training program. In addition to physical, occupational, speech and language therapy, the Enrichment Center also offers clients support groups, music and dance sessions, arts and crafts, and trips to local museums, movie theaters, and other activities designed to encourage social interaction and cognitive growth.

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