Defining The Patient Experience Through Service

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For the past fourteen years, Stanley ‘Stan’ Carn III, has been part of the patient experience at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP). As a physical therapy aide, Stan connects with people who are often times just at the beginning of the physical rehabilitation journey after illness and injury has derailed their lives.

In September 2018, Stan was honored for his commitment to the patient experience by being one recipients of the 11th Annual HUP Patient Advocacy Recognition Ceremony. The Office of Patient Affairs and Patient & Guest Relations recognizes those outstanding partners in patient advocacy among our peers who consistently succeed at making the Penn Medicine Patient Experience a great one. Recipients are exceptional patient and family advocates nominated by their peers for their compassion and consistently positive impact on the patient experience.

What inspired you to become a physical therapy aide?

I was inspired to become a physical therapy aide after working at another hospital for 27 years prior to coming to HUP, because I had encountered so many people with life altering injuries. I was compelled to help, and was given the opportunity to join the awesome group of physical therapists until that facility closed.

What is your favorite part about your job?

My colleagues are the best, their dedication to their profession encourages me to be the best physical therapy aide that I can be. I learn so much from them. Every single one of them keeps the aides informed about what is going on with all the patients. They are all a fountain of knowledge, which means there are always teaching moments.

Why is providing a positive patient experience for those in our care important to you?

I treat people the way that I want to be treated with dignity and respect. If I was a patient, I would want whoever was working with me to have a positive attitude and that sets the atmosphere for an effective treatment.

What would you want patients to know about the experience they will have while under the care of Penn Medicine and Good Shepherd Penn Partners?

I would like for our patients and their loved ones to know they are going to be cared for like they are family. That our main goal and purpose is to help them recover so that they can get back to good health. That’s important to me. This is what I love doing, every day at work makes me feel like I'm making a difference in someone’s life. To see our patients, make full recoveries is the greatest reward.

Below is the sediment shared Colleen Chancler, PT, MHS, PhD Director for Therapy Services at HUP, regarding Stan’s recognition:

"Stanley ‘Stan’ Carn III is a role model of excellence and professionalism. It is hard to narrow this to a single story because any person I asked describes Stanley as the best-ever. He anticipates our needs, in addition to making sure families are included during their loved one’s therapy sessions. Stanley is the person who figures out how to help the patient no matter what the circumstances. He re-arranges schedules, adjusts the therapy location, helps the nurses get the person ready and ensures that the therapists have the assistance they need to manage the case. In addition, Stanley is someone who can, with near perfection, get a patient to participate in therapy. He has a calm confidence that translates to patients in our care. That persona matters when dealing with people who are often afraid and nervous about moving. Even though someone might have just had surgery, they will come to therapy when Stanley asks.

Stanley ensures that the department has all the equipment and that this is in perfect working order. I have 100% confidence when we use something down here it is clean and in working order. This has been recognized by several surveyors at HUP with the Department of Health and The Joint Commission accreditation surveys. Stanley is a big E-A-G-L-E-S fan. This is something he also shares with us and the patients. The enthusiasm he has when talking about the Birds is a good distraction from the pressure of the situation. And who doesn’t love our ‘Iggles’!

While I could continue with many instances of excellence, recently Stanley has started to announce and congratulate our staff on their birthday within our department. All the staff thus far have mentioned this as the favorite part of their day because Stan remembers it’s their birthday-that is how much he is respected. He is kind, compassionate, gracious and thoughtful. Congratulations Stan on a well-deserved recognition."