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Joseph named 2022 Compassionate Care Award recipient

Interim Director of Psychology and Director of Inpatient Psychology and Training Christopher AhnAllen, PhD, (right) presents Kharma Joseph, MHW, with the 2022 Compassionate Care Award

Seven years ago, the Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital community tragically lost a 2 South inpatient psychiatry mental health worker, Kelly Young, who was known for his compassionate care. He was posthumously awarded the first Compassionate Care Award. At a special ceremony held recently, Kharma Joseph, MHW, was presented with the Compassionate Care Award for 2022.

Joseph was selected by a committee of her peers for the award as a result of the compassion she has exhibited for her patients over the last year, exemplifying the foundation on which the award was established by:

  • Communicating sensitively with patients and loved ones
  • Listening carefully, providing emotional support and instilling hope
  • Respecting patients’ values, cultural background, choices and decisions
  • Understanding the significance of patients’ families and communities

During the presentation, Interim Director of Psychology and Director of Inpatient Psychology and Training Christopher AhnAllen, PhD, talked about what is means to practice with compassion. “Compassion is a way of providing care that is never fully mastered—nor should it be. It’s the continued practice and demonstration that enables us to be healers in a given moment while we hold the hope for someone who is not yet able to see it themselves,” he said. “We are so very fortunate to work alongside all who ascribe to the compassionate approach on our unit. May this ceremony and our shared recognition of the compassionate service today fuel our ongoing commitment to practicing tomorrow.”

2 South Nurse Director Kathryn James, BSN, RN, presented Joseph with her award. “I remember when I first met Kharma. She was bright and energetic and so positive,” she said. “We are so lucky to have her. She is the embodiment of compassionate care. She is a wonderful person and a talented and experienced MHW whose mission is to change the lives of those who need the help the most.”

Upon learning she had been named the 2022 Compassionate Care Award recipient, Joseph says she felt validated in her approach to her work. “It is my goal to advocate for the patients in my care and allow them to have a voice when receiving help here on 2 South,” she says. “I am grateful for every patient I’ve met here. They’ve all showed me my purpose and why I chose to be in the mental health field. Something I live by daily is, ‘Be the reason someone feels welcomed, seen, heard, valued, loved and supported.’” 

Also in attendance was Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President of Patient Care Services Cori Loescher, MM, BSN, RN, NEA-BC, who welcomed attendees at the opening of the event; 2 South musician Jason Ji; Spiritual Care Coordinator Tara Deonauth, M.Div., who offered a reading; and Compassionate Care Award committee member Rosa Colorado, OTR/L, who presented Deonauth with the Special Recognition Award.

Published 12/19/22

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