CONCORD — Dr. Edward Toomey, a Concord resident and an Emerson Hospital internal medicine physician who has been on staff since 1966, was recently recognized for his compassionate care.
Toomey was recognized at an award ceremony for the Terry Croteau Compassionate Care Award, named after an Emerson Hospital employee who recently lost her battle with breast cancer. This is the second year the Compassionate Care Award has been given. The concept for the award grew out of Emerson Hospital’s involvement in the Kenneth B. Schwartz Center, a nonprofit foundation dedicated to promoting compassionate care in medicine. All Emerson employees involved in the care of patients and their families were eligible for the award.
“At Emerson, it’s difficult to select one compassionate caregiver, but Toomey, an internal medicine physician, exceeds the expectations of his job description daily,” said Dr. DuBois, an Emerson hematologist/oncologist. “His treatment of colleagues and patients is legendary.”
Toomey has picked patients up and driven them to the hospital or the pharmacy if they are unable to drive. He has bought patients a single rose from the gift shop, written thank-you cards to anyone involved in his patients’ care and made house calls. He sounds like a doctor from a different, simpler era, but for Toomey, this is just par for the course.
“I am awestruck at how an individual can do this year after year, decade after decade,” said DuBois. “His compassion is limitless.”
“This physician has gone well beyond the call of duty to ensure that his patients receive the best possible care,” said Dr. David Green, an Emerson pulmonologist. “There seems to be no limit to his availability for physical and emotional support for his patients and their families. He is an example for all of us.”
The award recognizes compassionate care as exemplified by Terry Croteau, who made an exceptional difference in the lives of her patients. “Your decision to name this award after Terry ranks among our family’s most significant memories,” said Croteau’s husband, Gerry. “She would be deeply honored and deeply moved by the committee’s decision to name it after her.”
A role model of compassionate and respectful care, Toomey, who was visibly moved, graciously accepted the award by acknowledging the efforts of all the Emerson Hospital employees with whom he has worked over the years. “No one person can serve a patient without a team,” said Toomey. “I am just a reflection of your greatness. I mirror your compassion. I will do my best to fulfill Terry’s legacy of caring. This is a beautiful way to remember her.”
“His is a life lived kindly,” said Dr. Thomas LaMattina. “Toomey is a great doctor because he is a great person and he is a great person because he loves other people.”