Photo(l-r): Dr. Mariana Munante, Ms. Melisa Carrasco, RN (DAISY Award Winner), COL Lawrence Crozier, LTC Tammie Boeger
It was a lucky day for Family Medicine when Melisa joined our staff. Since joining the Team in June of 2009 as our Patient Care Coordinator, she has demonstrated a strong desire to make health care better for our patients. She possesses great “people” skills and excels in communicating, listening, empathizing and problem solving. She has the ability to think logically through complex situations.
Melisa epitomizes the very meaning of compassion and caring. She reaches out and offers hope and concern for our patients, especially when they are sick or suffering. She is not only ready to lend emotional support but also has unparalleled ability to utilize multiple resources to address and solve our patients problems. There have been several instances where her expertise in networking within the community has been very beneficial in helping displaced veterans find temporary housing and also access to medical care and medications. She has a kind and gentle disposition in her approach to providing care and assistance to all our beneficiaries, active duty and retired alike. She fosters the provider -patient relationship and helps patients realize their health care team cares about them.
She is an attentive listener and is able to educate and reassure patients. She is especially helpful with those patients that have difficulty navigating the healthcare system and staying healthy in spite of the primary care team’s best efforts. She encourages patients to participate in their own care and follow their health care plan. Through this education, reassurance and support to the patient, she develops trusting relationships, resulting in improved outcomes. She is their bridge between the inpatient and outpatient services, ensuring continuity of care and avoiding redundancy.
Melisa frequently goes above and beyond the call of duty to insure patient satisfaction and continuity of care. She recently helped coordinate an out of state complex case requiring coordination with several doctors and testing services for one of our beneficiaries, making sure all referrals were authorized and approved while keeping the patient and her Primary Care Provider informed of each step along the way. Her sympathetic and responsive approach and concern for the patients care and well being make her an exceptional patient advocate and nurse. “If I don’t know, I will find out the answer and get back to you.” And she does just that; she takes ownership of a problem and follows it through to resolution.
Staff and coworkers describe Melisa as “worth her weight in gold” and “she will not leave a rock unturned if she thinks she can help a patient.” One provider stated “I don’t know what the patient would have done without her intervention.” She always goes the extra mile.
Her positive “can do” attitude, selfless service, patience and perseverance in the face of many challenges with our changing health care system, make her an invaluable asset to the Family Medicine Clinic, her patients and the Army community. She definitely possesses a personal “magic” in doing her job as the Patient Care Coordinator for the Family Medicine Clinic.