Monday, May 1, 2017

St. Elizabeth Physicians Saluted for Support of Military Associates

Durham nominated St. Elizabeth Physicians for the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award for the support she receives from the system and her colleagues on the care coordination team at the center billing office in Fort Mitchell. 
St. Elizabeth Physicians has been nominated for the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award for exceptional backing of its employees serving in the National Guard and Reserve.

Angela Durham, a registered nurse and second-class petty officer in the Navy Reserve, said she nominated St. Elizabeth Physicians because of the support she received when she was placed on orders.

“I was new to my job when I was called to active-duty training for 15 days,” said Durham. “I was hesitant about requesting time right away, but my team was nothing but supportive and encouraged me to take the time I needed.”

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Durham joined the reserves in 2014 to share her skills as a nurse and give back to her country. She’s required to participate in one weekend of drill duty per month and two weeks a year. Last year, Durham’s unit required her to take a month-long leave of absence.

“I was asked to assist a sea operation that took me away from my work and family,” said Durham. “On top of the support I had already received for my routine absences, my colleagues took me out to breakfast and gave me a gift card and extra time to spend with my daughters before I left.” 

She said that while it can be difficult to balance demands from both jobs, the flexibility in her civilian job makes life a lot easier. “I know I can go away and do my job for the Navy and come back to a group of people who I am excited to work with and have my back,” said Durham.

Her colleagues on the care coordination team at the center billing office in Fort Mitchell said they feel honored to have her as a member of their team. “I respect Angela so much as a woman, friend, colleague and Reservists,” said Rebecca Mathias, BSN, RN, manager of care coordination at St. Elizabeth Physicians. “There’s no better way to serve your community, and we are proud to be her cheerleaders.”

The Freedom Award began in 1996 by the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) and is the highest in a series of employer recognition awards given by the Department of Defense. ESGR received more than 3,000 nominations in 2017 from employers representing almost every industry across the nation.

The Kentucky ESGR will recognize St. Elizabeth Physicians during a ceremony on Friday, May 19, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Louisville.

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