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Northern Westchester Hospital President and CEO Joel Seligman receives Planetree’s 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award

Mount Kisco, NY —

Joel Seligman, President and CEO of Northern Westchester Hospital (NWH), has been awarded the 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award from Planetree, a global network of healthcare organizations dedicated to patient-centered care in healing environments. The award was presented at the Planetree Annual Conference's Spirit of Planetree Award Dinner, which included over 800 attendees from 24 countries.

"Your tireless work to bring humanity and a holistic approach to the delivery of care to patients and families in your region has inspired not only your own organization, but countless others from provider organizations around the world," said Planetree's President Susan Frampton, Ph.D. "With this award, you join a distinguished group of pioneers in patient care. This award provides an opportunity to both recognize your notable contributions to the field and shine a light on the critical importance of local community hospitals providing access to safe, high quality patient-centered care services. "

"I am honored to accept this important award," said Mr. Seligman. "As a nationally recognized leader for patient and family engagement, the delivery of high quality patient-centered care is at the heart of Northern Westchester's mission. Our goal in creating innovative programs and services is to fulfill the needs of our patients and their families. But the implementation of these programs would not be possible without the commitment and dedication of our staff, physicians, volunteers, trustees and our unique partnership with our robust patient and family advisory councils."

A decade ago, NWH was among the first organizations nationwide to achieve Planetree Designation. In January, 2017, NWH was once again Designated with Distinction. Today, the hospital is one of only 92 organizations worldwide and one of only 33 in the United States to receive the Patient-Centered Hospital Designation since the program's launch in 2007, and one of only nine organizations to be Designated with Distinction, as an institution dedicated to sharing best practices with other healthcare organizations and providing the tools to replicate patient-centered innovative programs.

"Hospitals are focused on enhancing the quality of the patient experience and we consider it our mission to share what has worked and not worked as part of our journey to being a leader in patient-centered care," says Seligman. Organizations from many states and countries such as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Denmark, England, Malaysia, The Netherlands, Scotland, Sweden and Turkey have been to NWH to learn and share best practices.

Recently, Mr. Seligman served as a member of the National Academy of Medicine's Scientific Advisory Panel that issued a discussion paper and guiding framework for harnessing the evidence supporting patient and family centered care. Grounded in scientific evidence, it concluded the involvement of patients and families is the key to creating a high-quality, high-value health system that achieves patient-centered outcomes. The paper asserts that a cultural shift to patient and family engagement is an essential driver to achieving "the Quadruple Aim," outcomes of better culture, better care, better health and lower costs.

The International Spirit of Planetree Awards were created to promote patient-centered care by publicly recognizing individuals who personalize and demystify the health care experience for others, as well as programs and services that support extraordinary achievement in patient-centered care. The initiative helps communicate the character and quality of the caregivers and health care organizations in the Planetree network. Caregivers, physician champions and animal therapy awards are presented as well as best practice awards for programs representing each of the 10 components of the Planetree model of care. A committee evaluates each program based upon criteria such as innovation, sustainability, customer impact and utilization and outcomes measurement. NWH staff and programs have been recognized by Planetree and many of the recognized best practice programs can be accessed through The Center for Patient-Centered Innovation on the hospital's website.

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About Northern Westchester Hospital
Northern Westchester Hospital (NWH), a member of Northwell Health, provides quality, patient-centered care that is close to home through a unique combination of medical expertise, leading-edge technology, and a commitment to humanity. Over 650 highly-skilled physicians, state-of-the-art technology and professional staff of caregivers are all in place to ensure that you and your family receive treatment in a caring, respectful and nurturing environment. NWH has established extensive internal quality measurements that surpass the standards defined by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Hospital Quality Alliance (HQA) National Hospital Quality Measures. Our high-quality standards help to ensure that the treatment you receive at NWH is among the best in the nation. For more information, please visit and connect with us on Facebook.

About Northwell Health
Northwell Health is New York State's largest health care provider and private employer, with 22 hospitals, over 550 outpatient facilities and nearly 15,000 affiliated physicians. We care for more than two million people annually in the New York metro area and beyond, thanks to philanthropic support from our communities. Our 63,500 employees – 15,000+ nurses and 4,000 employed doctors, including members of Northwell Health Physician Partners – are working to change health care for the better. We're making breakthroughs in medicine at the Feinstein Institute. We're training the next generation of medical professionals at the visionary Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell and the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. For information on our more than 100 medical specialties, visit

About Planetree
Founded in 1978 by a San Francisco patient who endured a traumatic hospitalization, Planetree has been at the forefront of the effort to personalize, humanize and demystify the healthcare system for three decades. Today, the Planetree membership network is a global community of acute care hospitals, continuing care facilities, and outpatient clinics, each at various phases of the journey to transform their healthcare by considering every aspect of the healthcare experience from the perspective of their patents, and reconnecting staff to their passion for caring for others a Complete list of Planetree hospitals is available at

Gretchen Mullin
[email protected]

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