by Adam Rosh, MD
We are proud to announce this year’s winner of the EMRA/Rosh Review One Step Further Award goes to Dr. Kathryn Lupez of Carolinas Medical Center.
The One Step Forward award is given to a resident who exemplifies the ideals of continuous learning and self-improvement, who takes it upon himself or herself to go “one step further” to improve a weakness or accelerate a strength.
While there were many excellent candidates for this year’s award, Dr. Lupez stood out as someone who “takes it one step further” on a daily basis.
In her letter of support, a pediatric fellow in the department provided this story:
“I was in the department when a pediatric trauma alert arrived, a 15-year-old on a moped that was hit by a car. Although sitting up and answering questions on arrival, he was upgraded after developing confusion, presyncope, and gross hematuria. The FAST was positive, and the patient was accompanied by the trauma team to the CT scanner. Dr. Lupez diligently refreshed her computer for the CT images and noted significant injury to the child’s spleen before the images were official read. Dr. Lupez paged the trauma team and spoke to the radiologist who confirmed her interpretation (grade V splenic laceration with active extravasation). While coordinating communication with the nurse regarding the need for a blood transfusion and waiting for the trauma team to call back, there was an overhead page for the pediatric trauma team to go to interventional radiology, stat. The patient was in IR unaccompanied by a physician and had become hypotensive and vomited. Dr. Lupez went immediately to IR. One of the trauma attendings also arrived at that time, and the need for prompt embolization with full sedation was discussed with the interventional radiologist. Dr. Lupez mobilized help, getting a massive transfusion pack and additional nursing help from other units. She deftly intubated the patient in IR prior to the procedure.”
“At the end of her shift, she initiated a well-received and appreciated debriefing session with the nurses to discuss their prespectives on what happened leading up to the event. She ended the session by focusing on what she could do as the physician to prevent a similar event from happening in the future, and how she could best help nursing if it did. During the event and during the debriefing session, I reassured her that events were not anything she could have controlled, but she did an excellent job managing the difficult and unexpected situation handed to her and most importantly, she was able to quickly get the child the care he needed.”
Dr. Lupez’s contributions outside the clinical realm are equally amazing according to her program director Dr. Sandy Craig. “She has been a staunch advocate for LGBT youth throughout her career and is an active member of our institutional and departmental diversity committees, reaching out to underrepresented applicants to our program and welcoming them to her home during their interview visits. She has availed herself of numerous professional development opportunities at our institution, including our “Resident as Teacher” professional development series. She is a member of our Global health track, is fluent in Spanish, and is using her language and medical skills to care for the underserved of Guatemala”
“I could go on”, said Dr. Craig, “as these are only a few of the many anecdotes that illustrate Dr. Lupez’s incessant desire to take it to the next level each and every day.”
Dr Lupez was recognized at this year’s EMRA Awards Ceremony at the CORD Academic Assembly in San Antonio. Dr. Lupez received a plaque, a $1,000 award check, and Rosh Review will donate $1,000 to DonorsChoose.org on behalf of Dr. Lupez.