Monday, December 14, 2009

Ultimate Gift Honored at Stritch School of Medicine

Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine Students and Faculty Give Thanks as Gross Anatomy Class Concludes

After 10 weeks of intense study during gross anatomy class Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine (SSOM) students bid farewell to their most intimate and greatest teachers during a blessing ceremony where they gave thanks to those who gave the ultimate gift. “The men and women who dedicated their bodies to education have given you the opportunity to experience learning in a special way. Today, we gather to give thanks to God and them for all that you’ve learned these past weeks,” said Sister Brenda Eagen, director of SSOM Department of University Ministry.

During the ceremony Father John O’Callaghan, S.J., asked God’s blessing on the bodies one last time. Shoulder-to-shoulder the students who together took this important step in medical education paused for a moment of silence and reflection.

“Someone sometime ago, before you arrived at medical school, made a decision on your behalf and you became a benefactor of that gift from a total stranger,” said Dr. Fred Wezeman, director of the structure of the human body medical course. “The knowledge that you have as a result of that gift leaves this room with you, always remain appreciative of the gift.”

The ceremony was an opportunity to give thanks to those who even in their death bring life to others through the education of future physicians.

“These bodies are gifts of knowledge and I wonder if they knew that their gift would transform our lives and open a whole new chapter in our medical education,” said Mona Patel, first year medical student. “We all can say ‘thank you’ by applying the knowledge we have gained to help serve the many people we will encounter in our clinical practice.”

About Loyola University Health System

Loyola University Health System (LUHS) is part of Trinity Health. Based in the western suburbs of Chicago, LUHS is a quaternary care system with a 61-acre main medical center campus, the 36-acre Gottlieb Memorial Hospital campus and more than 30 primary and specialty care facilities in Cook, Will and DuPage counties. Loyola University Medical Center’s campus is conveniently located in Maywood, 13 miles west of Chicago’s Loop and 8 miles east of Oak Brook, Ill. At the heart of the medical center campus is a 559-licensed-bed hospital that houses a Level 1 Trauma Center, a Burn Center and the Ronald McDonald® Children's Hospital of Loyola University Medical Center. Also on campus are the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, Loyola Outpatient Center, Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine and Loyola Oral Health Center as well as Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing and the Loyola Center for Fitness. Loyola's Gottlieb campus in Melrose Park includes the 255-licensed-bed community hospital, the Professional Office Building housing 150 private practice clinics, the Adult Day Care, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park.

Trinity Health is a national Catholic health system with an enduring legacy and a steadfast mission to be a transforming and healing presence within the communities we serve. Trinity is committed to being a people-centered health care system that enables better health, better care and lower costs. Trinity Health has 88 hospitals and hundreds of continuing care facilities, home care agencies and outpatient centers in 21 states and 119,000 employees.