Dual honours for a remarkable physician
In compelling testimony to his exceptional commitment, expertise and energy, Dr. Michael Silverman is the recipient of both the Joint Medical Advisory Committee (MAC) Award and the St. Joseph’s MAC Award this year. It’s the first time an individual has won two MAC awards in the same year.
This unusual dual honour recognizes the tireless work and guidance on numerous fronts by the illustrious infectious diseases expert, from the earliest days of the pandemic and onwards – locally, regionally and beyond.
The Joint MAC consists of leaders from the MACs of London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) and St. Joseph's Health Care London (St. Joseph’s). The MAC promotes the highest standards of medical care throughout the hospital and provides general supervision over the practice of medicine, dentistry and midwifery.
Dr. Silverman, citywide Chair/Chief, Infectious Diseases in London, and Medical Director, Infection Prevention and Control and the Infectious Diseases Care Program at St. Joseph’s, shares the Joint MAC Award with medical microbiologist Dr. Michael Payne, Medical Director, Infection Prevention and Control at LHSC. The award is presented to a hospital or Professional Staff member at LHSC and/or St. Joseph's who has demonstrated qualities of leadership within the scope of their position or provided outstanding contribution to the success of initiatives aligning with the strategic directions of both LHSC and St. Joseph's.
As members of the infectious diseases consulting services at St. Joseph’s and LHSC, Dr. Silverman and Dr, Payne “unreservedly committed themselves to supporting and informing us all,” says Dr. Bill Sischek, Integrated Vice President, Medical Affairs and Medical Education, who nominated the two physicians for the Joint MAC Award. “The time and personal energy commitments of these two physicians has been nothing short of remarkable. In the early days of the pandemic they would appear, either singly or often together, online at all hours of the day and night, seven days a week to advise, inform and comment to many diverse groups,”
Providing the best possible advice in circumstances that often changed multiple times a day in very concerning circumstances, the physicians remained calm and thoughtful, even on the most difficult days when emotions were running high, says Dr. Sischek.
“We counted on them to provide us with objective, practical suggestions to work with the finite supplies of personal protective equipment (PPE) available and unclear public health priorities with best care for patients and staff safety always in mind.”
Drs. Silverman and Payne were further recruited to the Regional Advisory Committee (RAC), which works with Healthcare Material Management Services on the management of supplies for the local and extended health care region. Working with the RAC for hours a day, seven days a week for months, the physicians’ advice has been instrumental in creating “what has come to be seen as a pace-setting system for supplying PPE to the Ontario Health West region as well as our local supply chain,” says Dr. Sischek.
At St. Joseph’s, Dr. Silverman was collectively nominated for the St. Joseph’s MAC Award by various teams that have relied on his expertise, guidance, teaching, and unwavering commitment to patient, resident and workforce safety throughout the pandemic. The award is presented to an individual for demonstrating qualities of leadership and providing outstanding contributions to the success of initiatives aligning with the strategic directions of St. Joseph’s.
By staying abreast of emerging evidence, Dr. Silverman has recommended infection prevention and control practices/policy well before they were officially mandated by Ontario Health and /or local public health officials, say his nominators. “He has provided the expert guidance for St. Joseph’s to be a key partner in the local and regional response to COVID-19.”
This outstanding leadership, say the teams, has supported St. Joseph’s in having no transmission of COVID-19 to another person to date within all the organization’s facilities. There have been only four cases of COVID-19 among patients, all separate instances of patients transferred to St. Joseph’s from another facility and diagnosed shortly after transfer.
“Dr. Silverman provides leadership in a manner that inspires confidence,” says Lisa Malbrecht, Director, Complex Care and Palliative Care. “In all interactions he listens to understand the local context and concern. His recommendations are based on an excellent understanding of the available evidence as well as a deep concern for the safety of staff and patients…Despite an incredibly busy schedule, he consistently made himself available to resolve challenges and to build the capacity for all leaders to competently lead in a worldwide pandemic. We owe a great debt of gratitude for his never-ending commitment to this organization over the past year.”
About the Medical Advisory Committee Awards
The Medical Advisory Committee (MAC) annually recognizes hospital and Professional Staff who go "above and beyond the call of duty". These individuals are acknowledged for their outstanding contributions to London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) and St. Joseph's Health Care London (St. Joseph's). There are four different awards to be received:
Joint MAC Award – Awarded to hospital or Professional Staff member at LHSC and/or St. Joseph's who has recently demonstrated qualities of leadership within the scope of their position or provided outstanding contribution to the success of initiatives aligning with the strategic directions of both LHSC and St. Joseph's.
LHSC MAC Award – Awarded to a Professional Staff member at LHSC who has recently demonstrated qualities of leadership and provided outstanding contribution to the success of initiatives aligning with the strategic direction of LHSC
St. Joseph's MAC Award – Awarded to a Professional Staff member at St. Joseph's who has recently demonstrated qualities of leadership and provided outstanding contribution to the success of initiatives aligning with the strategic direction of St. Joseph's.
Joint MAC Chairs' Award – Awarded to hospital or Professional Staff member at LHSC and/or St. Joseph's who has actively contributed to the recent success and best practices of the Medical Advisory Committee or its Subcommittees.
Congratulations to all nominees and recipients of the 2020 Medical Advisory Committee (MAC) Awards for their commitment to the vision and mission of St. Joseph’s and LHSC, and for their leadership, integrity and motivation each provide to their peers. This year's awards were presented on Nov. 4 to:
- Dr. Michael Silverman and Dr. Michael Payne - Joint MAC Award
- Dr. Ashraf Fayad - Joint MAC Chairs' Award
- Dr. Michael Silverman - St. Joseph's MAC Award
- Dr. Wael Haddara - LHSC MAC Award