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Carthage Area Hospital Names New Employees of the Quarter

 Employee-Based Selection Process Lauds Peers, Recognizes ‘Best Among Us’ for Second Quarter

Carthage Area Hospital recently recognized three team members who embody the organization’s values as employees of the quarter for the second quarter.

Hardik I. Patel, M.D., a provider at Carthage Area Hospital’s Family Health Center and Director of the hospital’s Department of Medicine; Lorena Pallotta, a Licensed Practical Nurse with the hospital’s Acute Inpatient Unit; and Heather Hulbert, a hospital Patient Registration Clerk were honored in September.

From left: Jerian O’Dell, MBA, Carthage Area Hospital clinic manager, Hardik I. Patel, M.D., Carthage Family Health Center primary care physician and CAH Department of Medicine Director, and Mark DeCilles, CAH director of outpatient clinics.

Hardik I. Patel,M.D., Family Medicine Provider

Hardik I. Patel, M.D., is a native of India who moved to Lowell, Mass., with his family when he was in high school. He is a graduate of Ross University School of Medicine, Portsmouth, Dominica.

Dr. Patel completed an internship at Aultman Hospital, Canton, Ohio, where he also completed residency in family medicine. He is board-certified in Family Medicine. He joined the hospital’s primary care team in January 2011 as a member of the National Health Service Corps.

One nominator said of Dr. Patel: “He is not only an integral part of the Carthage Family Health Center team, but critical to the entire hospital’s success. Whether he is in the clinic, rounding in the hospital/ER, or being consulted by Country Manor, he is always willing to provide guidance and mentorship, despite his sometimes overwhelming schedule, all while providing compassionate care to each of his patients.”

Dr. Patel and his wife, Kunjal have a 4-year-old daughter, Aarovi, and are expecting the arrival of their second child this fall. Outside of practice, he enjoys football, nature and the outdoors and camping.

Lorena Pallotta, LPN, Carthage Area Hospital Acute Inpatient Unit, and Steven A. Olsen, RN, MSN, MHA, administrator of patient care services and director of nursing.

Lorena Pallotta, LPN, Acute Inpatient Unit

Lorena Pallotta is a North Country native who lives in Beaver Falls with her husband, Michael, and 16-year-old son, Derek, a Beaver River High School student.

Pallotta joined Carthage Area Hospital’s Skilled Nursing Unit in March 2016 and in August transferred to the Acute Inpatient Unit.

Pallotta grew up in Croghan and graduated from Beaver River High School, completing a Licensed Practical Nurse program at Lewis County BOCES and later graduating from SUNY Canton with an Associate of Applied Science degree.

As a nurse, Pallotta said she enjoys “helping patients to feel as best they can while they’re receiving care, whatever their ailments.”

One nominator said of Pallotta: “She is the true meaning of what a nurse should be. Always with a smile on her face, she is a consistent help to patients and peers.”

On advice to others considering a call to the nursing profession, Pallotta said young people “should experience a wide variety of nursing and learn as much as they can to gain valuable knowledge that will make you a good nurse.”

Heathet Hulbert, Hospital Registration Clerk

Heather Hulbert  is a native of Beaver Falls who lives in Lowville with her husband, Jesse, a former Army soldier, son, Jared, 16, and daughter, Jordan, 13.

Hulbert joined the hospital registration team in October 2015. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from American Military University.

Hulbert said she finds the environment and pace of work at the hospital and enjoys “helping people and interacting with many different types of patients. It’s a fast pace and we never see the same thing one day to the next.”

On managing patients in times of stress, Hulbert said “it is important to make them feel comfortable; like you genuinely care about them. You don’t want them to feel any worse than they already do when they arrive at the hospital.”

One nominator said of Hulbert: “Heather is a great team player and excellent with customer service. She strives to make patients happy in difficult situations and ensures that the hospital’s Registration Department is always operating at its best.”

In her free time, Hulbert enjoys kayaking and spending quality time with her family.

Natalie Burnham, Carthage Area Hospital director of community, patient and employee engagement, said the three team members embody the values that Carthage Hospital encourages its staff to live each day.

“Our core values — accountability, professionalism, compassion, customer service, and teamwork — are standards of conduct that we hope all employees strive to live,” Burnham said. “When we recognize members of our team who live our values, they inspire others to follow.”

Nomination, Selection Process

All team members employed for more than one year are eligible for nomination by fellow employees, supervisors, auxiliary members, patients, patient family members or visitors.

Nominations are reviewed based on each nominee’s embodiment of Carthage Area Hospital’s five core values — professionalism, accountability, compassion, customer service and teamwork.

This year, the hospital’s Rewards and Recognition Committee implemented a new selection process that emphasizes the hospital’s values through an anonymous vote open to the entire staff. A narrative of each nomination that omits employee name, gender and department is published on an online portal open for a two-week voting period. The top three nominees are then selected for recognition as employees of the quarter.

Each employee received a $25 gift card, a gift basket, valet parking for a month at the hospital — off-campus employees receive a reserved parking space for a month — a plaque and an invitation to join the senior leadership team for lunch.

About Carthage Area Hospital

Carthage Area Hospital was established as a not-for-profit rural community hospital in 1965. It operates today as a fully accredited 25-bed Critical Access Hospital, serving approximately 83,000 residents in Jefferson, northern Lewis and southern St. Lawrence counties.

The hospital also operates a network of community-based clinics, including its Family Health Center, Pediatric Clinic and Women’s Way to Wellness and provides a range of specialty care, including general surgery, orthopedics, urology, physical therapy and behavioral health. Visit to learn more.