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University of Utah Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner Holli Martinez Wins $50,000 Sojourn Award to Pursue Innovative Ideas in Care
Her expertise is widely recognized in the palliative care community.
Oct 14, 2013 3:15 PMIn the hallways of University Hospital, health care professionals in need of advice on providing palliative care to patients know to turn to nurse practitioner Holli Martinez for trusted insight.
As the Director of the Palliative Care Program at the University of Utah, Martinez has built an outstanding reputation in the hospital, with referrals from nearly every department. Palliative care is specialized care for people with serious or chronic illnesses, which focuses on providing patients with relief from symptoms and pain associated with their disease. Palliative care offers a chance for a better quality of life for a patient —and his or her family, who often endure stress from watching a loved one suffer while ill.
“Holli’s compassionate bedside care is equaled only by her commitment to the practice of evidence based care. It is a rare practitioner who is a gifted educator, patient advocate and a consummate clinician,” said Ginger Marshall, a nurse practitioner and former clinical instructor in the University of Utah College of Nursing who hired Martinez in 2007. “Holli is true credit to the specialty of palliative care and the profession of nursing.”
For Martinez, helping patients in the vulnerable stage of needing palliative care is a calling she takes on with grace and compassion. She and her team are collaborating with the hospital’s intensive care unit to create criteria for palliative care trigger as well as the University of Utah Health Plans for innovating pathways of caring for patients with life-limiting illnesses. Martinez also plays a vital role in teaching medical students, residents, and graduate nursing students the concepts of palliative care. Her expertise, which is widely recognized in the palliative care community, has resulted in national leadership positions including, the Advanced Practice Nurse Exam Development Committee for the National Board for Certification of Hospice and Palliative Nurses and as co-editor of the 4th edition of the Hospice & Palliative Care Nurses Association’s Core Curriculum.
This month, Martinez is being honored with another distinction: She is one of five health care professionals selected to receive a $50,000 Sojourn Award from the Cambia Health Foundation on Oct. 24 in Portland.
Martinez hopes to use her award to continue promoting the palliative care mission by creating educational and collaborative initiatives that will impact not only the patient and family experience, but also the University of Utah Health Care system as a whole.
The goal of the Sojourn Awards is to promote innovations by inspiring health care workers and to invest in their futures. Martinez will be recognized along with recipients from Idaho, Oregon and Washington who have worked to advance the access, quality and understanding of palliative care. The awards are funded by the Cambia Foundation, which has a mission of promoting collaboration in finding new ideas to advance palliative care. Since 2010, the CHF has awarded $700,000 in grants to Sojourns Award winners who are leaders in the care of people with serious and chronic illnesses.
“Receiving the prestigious Sojourn Award is an amazing honor," said Martinez. "Being recognized for doing something that I truly love and am so passionate about is an incredible experience. It is a supreme privilege to become involved with patients and their families at such an important time in their lives.”
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Communications Specialist , University of Utah Health Sciences Office of Public Affairs
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