Compassionate, Committed People

compassionate commited people concept Henry Ford is made up of 30,000 amazing individuals who collectively ensure the health of our communities.

They accomplish this using their clinical skills and their business acumen, by a kind word to a patient or family member, or volunteering in the community. The System values their contributions by providing opportunities for employees to do their best every day.


2017 Employee and Physician Giving Campaign Results

  • 8,000 Employee/Physician Donors

  • $3 Million Dollars Raised


Employee Giving Campaign funds supported these and many other valuable programs:

compassionate game on cancer

Game on Cancer

More than 1,500 Henry Ford Cancer Institute patients received support through the Game On Cancer fund.

compassionate bob and sandy riney fund

Bob and Sandy Riney Helping Hands Fund

The Bob & Sandy Riney Helping Hands fund provided assistance to more than 180 employees from their co-workers.

compassionate sandcastles


Nearly 2,000 grieving children received support and assistance in the past five years through the SandCastles Grief Support Program.

An Exceptional Commitment to Compassion

In 2008, a Henry Ford Critical Care Physician had a life-changing, nearly life-ending experience that led her to change the way health care is delivered at Henry Ford and beyond. She wrote a best-selling memoir, journal articles, gave talks and interviews, and received outstanding awards for her work. Rana Awdish, M.D., wasn’t looking for fame. She wanted to relieve suffering, renew hope, and enlighten medical professionals to their roles in alleviating suffering and providing truly compassionate care.

compassionate dr awdish lab coat

“When a tumor in my liver ruptured, I effectively bled to death in my own hospital. I received more than 26 units of blood products that night, went into multisystem organ failure, was put on a ventilator, had a stroke and a complete collapse of circulation. The baby I was seven months pregnant with would not survive, but I would – thanks to the incredible skill and grace of the teams of professionals who cared for me,” she says.

As she struggled to recover, learn to walk, talk and care for herself, she interacted with medical professionals from the patient’s bed. And what she experienced opened her eyes to a new kind of suffering brought about – or relieved – by words, actions and technicalities. One heart-wrenching example: A billing error called into question when her unborn child should have been added to her insurance plan.

“I was privy to failures that I’d been blind to as a clinician,” says Dr. Awdish. “There were disturbing deficits and occasionally an apparently complete absence of empathy. I recognized myself in every failure.”

Dr. Awdish was motivated to write a memoir, In Shock. She was interviewed by The Times, The Telegraph, NPR, The BBC, the Today Show online, MedPage, HealthLeaders Media, and Becker’s Hospital Review. Henry Ford appointed her Medical Director of Care Experience. In 2017, she was named National Compassionate Caregiver of the Year by The Schwartz Center and the Physician of the Year by Press Ganey.

To find out more, read the New England Journal of Medicine Perspectives article, A View from the Edge, which went viral in 2017, and this New York Times review of her memoir.

2017 Compassionate, Committed People Highlights

compassionate employees and police

  • Henry Ford Health participated in the American Hospital Association's online campaign, “Hospitals Against Violence,” or #HAVHope. Through photos of employees and community partners holding hands, the System demonstrated unity and supported the campaign’s message.
  • In 2017, Game on Cancer raised $1 million to support patients and their families. One of them was Christine, an employee of 37 years whose husband was diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer. With bills piling up, Christine struggled to keep food in the pantry and make ends meet. Game On Cancer funds assisted with groceries and gas for the couple.
  • compassionate employee resource groups2 Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) experienced substantial growth in 2017 with membership nearly doubling from 1,086 to 2,120. Three ERGs were added, bringing the total to 10. New ERGs included:
  • EmPower – African American employees
  • HF4Vets for employees and family members who are veterans of the Armed Forces
  • ABLE – Persons with Disabilities
  • Any employee can join any ERG – and many employees join to learn more about the diversity of their colleagues.
  • Employees recognize they cannot care for others if they don’t take care of themselves. Henry Ford consistently outpaces similar organizations in employee health assessment scores. To support employees on their wellness journeys, the System maintains a robust Employee Wellness program that includes a wide range of resources, fun activities and challenges, and incentives in the form of reduced costs for medical insurance when certain biometrics are met.
  • Keeping employees and patients safe is a top priority as the System embarks on its High Reliability journey. Teams and committees have reviewed safety policies and practices, conducted front-end analysis and worksite planning assessments, and improved security and training for employees in all areas. An employee safety manager and two safety specialists were hired to work directly with front-line staff and managers to improve processes and help prevent employee injuries.

2017 Compassionate, Committed People Awards

The compassion and commitment of Henry Ford employees was recognized with multiple awards in 2017, including the following. See all of our 2017 awards.

best and brightest
US News
best hospitals for nurses
2017 System Annual Report

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