Sunday, January 08, 2006

The World Class Cleveland Clinic:

We’re starting to know our way around Cleveland Clinic, or at least the departments we need to go to. The main campus of the clinic is comprised of 37 buildings, many connected by skywalks. We cross the Euclid Street to the closest building and follow the walks to building G, home of the Heart and Vascular Institute where Jackson has a room on the 9th floor. Emmanual is in the Children’s Hospital in Building M. Soothing classical music plays in the public areas of the hospital. Pictures and art work line the walls. The floors are beautiful and shiny. Glassed in waiting areas at the end of many hallways allow people to watch the clinic construction under progress.

For the past 11 years, Cleveland Clinic has been ranked the number one heart hospital in the United States. This reputation attracts people from all over the world. One of the employees at the swanky Inter-Continental Hotel told us that a few months ago, the Amir of Kuwait came to the Clinic for medical care. He and his entourage took over three floors of the hotel.

The people at the Clinic seem to really like their jobs and be invested in the patients. One of the nurses, whom we bumped into last night, wants to take Emmanual home. Thankfully, he has a wonderful host family and an adoptive family from Washington State who is visiting him in Cleveland. George, one of Jackson’s nurses, tells us how much he likes Jackson and how he’d like to keep in touch with him after his surgery. Yesterday, I paged the Catholic priest on call to ask him to stop by the room of the young Haitian man and offer him sacraments. “You mean Jackson?” said Father Bill. “I’ve already been to see him several times. He’s a wonderful young man.” Almost everyone at the Clinic seems to be touched by either Jackson or Emmanual.

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