CONSTANT COMPASSION: From left, Brown; Jovita Thomas-Williams, senior vice president for Human Resources; Nadel; Betancourt; and Peter L. Slavin, MD, MGH president

Eric Nadel, MD, director of the Harvard Affiliated Emergency Medicine Residency, was honored with the 2019 MGH Disability Champion Award. Nadel and his fellow nominees were recognized as “everyday heroes” at the Employee Disability Resource Group’s Breakfast of Champions celebration Nov. 25.

“I learned way more than I taught throughout this period, and only did what anyone would do to learn and help another person. It is easier to see now how everyone moves through the world differently and how we all need support along the way,” said Nadel, who was recognized for his support of his resident’s dream of becoming an Emergency Medicine physician, despite facing unexpected challenges.

“Dr. Nadel’s 20 years as program director for the Harvard Affiliated Emergency Medicine Residency have been highlighted by numerous examples of his compassion and advocacy for all his trainees, especially during times of physical or emotional challenges,” said David Brown, MD, chief of MGH Emergency Medicine, in his nomination of Nadel. “This was never more evident than the way Dr. Nadel leapt into action six summers ago to support one of his interns who was injured in an accident.”

According to Brown, during the student’s year of recovery, Nadel would visit him and ask, “When are you planning on coming back?” and “I can’t wait to see you in the ED.” During this time, Nadel worked to ensure the program would be able to accommodate the resident’s needs upon his return.

Joseph Betancourt, MD, vice president and chief equity and inclusion officer, discussed the hospital’s role in welcoming all people of diverse abilities as a safe place for them to work, visit or receive health care. “Normally champions are celebrated for their accomplishments, but these champions are celebrated for what they do for others,” said Betancourt. “They are committed to supporting those with diverse abilities, and in this way, they are the best of MGH. They demonstrate that together, we care.”