The conference room was filled with laughter, good fellowship and anticipation as the techs dressed in their aqua green scrubs and bouffant caps lined up for the buffet breakfast to celebrate SPD Week - and the latest winner of the SEVY Award. The tenth annual SEVY Award (Service, Excellence, Value and You), is presented to the SPD person of the year at Advocate Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn, Illinois, a suburb just south of Chicago. Created by John Colburn, sales consultant for V. Mueller and named after Yves Theodule, SPD Manager at Christ hospital (Yves backwards is SEVY), the SEVY Award celebration has become a way to not only reward an outstanding individual, but to recognize the crucial work being done by the entire SPD. Starting promptly at 7:00 am, about 35 available SPD personnel gathered for the celebration. Additionally, administrators Matt Baloff, Business Director of Surgery, Lynn Hennessy, Chief Nursing Officer, Cindy Mahal-Van-Brenk, VP, Perioperative Services and Katie Statler, Director, Perioperative Services were in attendance to offer their support. Sheree Covey, SPD Educator, began the festivities by introducing a short video illustrating the importance of teamwork. Next, each of the administrators spoke, expressing their appreciation of the hard work and importance of SPD in healing patients and keeping them safe from infectious diseases. Then, on a lighter note, people were selected to play a few rounds of Guess That, where one contestant gave verbal clues to a second person to help them identify objects related to SPD written on a flip chart. Finally, it was time for the award. SPD Manager, Yves Theodule expressed his appreciation for the outstanding work being done in SPD - and given the dedication of the folks in the room, how difficult it was to single out an individual for the SEVY Award. But no one seemed to dispute the final result as the room broke into applause as Phil Kwasny was given high fives and congratulations as he walked up to receive the SEVY Award from Yves and John Colburn of V. Mueller. Saying he was "just a worker bee", who doesn't like to draw attention to himself, Phil humbly accepted his plaque as well as a large screen television for his continued excellence. Speaking to Phil afterward, he told me how he started at Christ Hospital in Dietary back in 1985, moved into SPD in 1995 and currently spends most of his time working with Orthopedics. Phil praised his department as "a real cohesive unit". He continued, "We have a 'Goal to Zero' initiative, striving to make sure that all trays are assembled and complete by the end of each shift. And that's what gives me pleasure; working together to get as close to that goal as possible." He told me, "I'm not about awards. I'm about making sure that the patient is protected." Now that sounds like a deserving SEVY Award winner to me.


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