Winthrop’s New Welcoming Ambassadors


Vol. 18, No. 3
Fall 2008

  • A Gift... Beyond the Gift of Life

  • 12 Winthrop Specialists Named to New York Magazine’s 2008 “Best Doctors” List

  • Cancer Center for Kids Moves to a New Home

  • Friends & Benefactors Annual Reception

  • Winthrop Helps Postal Clerk Get Some Sleep

  • Winthrop: A Gateway to a Top-Rated Kidney Transplant Program

  • DiStasio Family Makes Donation to NICU

  • The Center for Advanced Care of Chronic Conditions

  • New Center for the Advanced Care of Chronic Conditions: Easing Patients’ Burdens through a Single Coordinated Plan of Care

  • Golfing for the CCFK

  • Annual Gala Celebrates Winthrop’s Passion for Care without Compromise

  • CCFK Families Celebrate Life

  • Unique Program Helps New Mothers Cope

  • Saving Lives in Bolivia

  • Winthrop’s New Welcoming Ambassadors

  • Tenth Annual Cancer Survivors Day Celebrates Life

  • Bay’s Big Bash Does it Again!

  • Spizz Family Supports CCFK

  • Pediatric Unit Receives Quilt Donation

  • Amanda Styles Cirelli Foundation Makes Generous Donation to CCFK

    Back to Publications

  • Anyone who has ever been hospitalized can identify with many of the emotions that accompany the hospital experience.

    Patients experience a range of feelings – from anxiety to fear – and many will have questions or concerns as they settle into an unfamiliar environment.

    Wouldn’t it be comforting to know that there is someone – in addition to the members of your expert healthcare team – who is devoted to welcoming you and working to enhance your overall hospital experience? Specially trained volunteers are doing just that thanks to the new Welcoming Ambassador Program at Winthrop-University Hospital.

    Through the collective efforts of Winthrop’s Patient Relations and Volunteer Services Departments, with the support of Winthrop’s Nursing Management team, this new program has been implemented on nine of the Hospital’s units with plans to expand its scope in the coming year. The program utilizes the warmth and caring of skilled volunteers who have been carefully selected to serve as ambassadors to Winthrop patients, helping to ensure that their needs are met during their Hospital stay.

    “The Welcoming Ambassador Program supports Winthrop-University Hospital’s goal to always promote a culture of patient-centered care that emphasizes compassionate and welcoming care from the moment a patient enters the hospital,” said Barbara Kohart Kleine, Vice President, Administration, at Winthrop-University Hospital. “Winthrop is known for its caring and concerned staff and this program is just another example of our staff at their finest.”

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    Winthrop Welcoming Ambassador Theresa Torretto speaks with patient Jesus Gomez.

    The program helps to create a special bond between patients and Welcoming Ambassadors – a bond that also carries over to members of the healthcare team.

    Upon admission to the Hospital unit, patients are greeted by a Welcoming Ambassador. The Ambassador spends time familiarizing patients with information that has been prepared exclusively for them about the Hospital as well as the unit in which they will receive care. The Ambassador also educates patients about select Hospital programs and services such as Pastoral Care and pain management.

    The Ambassadors also devote their time to visiting with patients. During these friendly visits, Ambassadors may chat with patients and lend an ear to them, helping with any questions or concerns they may have. The Ambassadors can bring any of these patient needs to the attention of the nursing management staff for quick assessment, action and resolve.

    “Winthrop’s Welcoming Ambassadors work closely with the Hospital’s clinical staff to truly enhance the overall patient experience,” said Jean Zebroski, Director of Patient Relations and Volunteer Services at Winthrop. “The Welcoming Ambassadors serve as a liaison between patients and the unit’s nursing management staff, helping to ensure that any issues are resolved promptly and effectively.”

    Since the Welcoming Ambassador Program’s official launch in April, feedback from both patients and staff has been very positive.

    “The Welcoming Ambassador Program adds a different layer to patientfocused care,” said Janis Scocozzo, RN, Nurse Manager at Winthrop. “We have received an excellent response from patients who feel at ease sharing their questions with the Welcoming Ambassadors.”

    The Department of Volunteer Services is currently seeking volunteers to support patients through the Welcoming Ambassador Program. Successful candidates must meet specific criteria and complete a two-step interview process with the Director of Patient Relations and Volunteer Services as well as a member of nursing management. Successful candidates will go on to receive comprehensive training in volunteer services and on the unit in which they will serve as a Welcoming Ambassador.

    For additional information about the Welcoming Ambassador Program and other exciting volunteer opportunities at Winthrop, please call (516) 663-2391.



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