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Palliative Care Medical Director Earns First Baptist Memphis Physician Foxhole Award

Dr. William Gregory Mullinax, medical director of Baptist Memphis’ palliative care service, received the hospital’s first Physician Foxhole Award. Doctors receive the award for facing the heat of health care battles with Baptist Memphis team members.

Dr. Mullinax was nominated for the compassionate care he provided the family of a palliative care patient. His nominator recalled the evening he came back to the hospital to comfort a family who was about to lose their second parent in 12 days.

According to the family, “He was so kind and so personable. He said one of the nicest things I have ever heard to the two of us.

“We told him it was hard knowing that our dad never knew our mom passed away since he was intubated and sedated. [Dr.] Mullinax said without hesitation that dad would be ‘very surprised when he met Jesus standing at the gates of Heaven and his wife was waiting beside him for dad.’ It helped me allow this one thing that had bothered me for some time become OK.”

Dr. Mullinax also walked the family to the ICU so they could say goodbye to their father. He and Kelsey Fiveash, RN, an ICU nurse who also stayed after the end of her shift, consoled the family and patiently answered their questions.

Baptist Memphis’ Service First Council accepts nominations from hospital team members and chooses a winner using a blinded review/ranking process. They do not know who has been nominated or who submitted the nomination. Dr. Mullinax received a plaque, a fox lapel pin, an arm patch for his white coat that says, “BMH-MEMPHIS FOXHOLE PHYSICIAN” and a rucksack full of goodies to share.

The Physician Foxhole Award nomination form is on Baptist Memphis’ MyBaptist homepage, and any team member can submit one. The deadline for second quarter nominations is March 31.