Mardge Cohen, MD
Women’s Equity in Access to Care and Treatment for HIV
2015 Inaugural Recipient of The Pearl Birnbaum Hurwitz
Humanism in Healthcare Award*
Author, Teacher, Philanthropist
President of the Advisory Board,
Mount Sinai Adolescent Health Center
Cambridge Health Alliance
Academic Community Healthcare System,
providing cutting-edge, compassionate care
to diverse communities in the Boston Metropolitan Area
Tuesday, October 27, 2015
5:45pm Award Ceremony
6:15pm Cocktail Reception
Dr. Ronald Arky
Maggie Gold Seelig & Jonathan Seelig
Dr. Maureen Strafford & Alex MacDonald
*Pearl Birnbaum Hurwitz (1907-1993) was an advocate and humanitarian who championed the needs of
vulnerable populations and fought for legislation to protect and bolster the lives of individuals who, by virtue
of physical, social or economic circumstances, required services. The award in her name was established in
2014 thanks to a generous gift from Dr. Ronald Arky.
Mardge Cohen, M.D., inaugural recipient of the 2015 Pearl Birnbaum Hurwitz Humanism in Healthcare Award – Dr. Cohen is the Medical Director of Women’s Equity in Access to Care and Treatment for HIV (WE-ACTx), an international community-based HIV/AIDS initiative operating in the East African nation of Rwanda. The mission of WE-ACTx is to increase women’s and children’s access to primary healthcare and treatment in resource-limited settings at the grassroots level. Dr. Cohen is also a practicing physician at Boston Healthcare for the Homeless, whose mission is to provide or assure access to the highest quality healthcare for all homeless men, women and children in the greater Boston area. She is the founder of one of the nation’s first women’s and children’s HIV programs at Cook County Hospital in Chicago and has been advocating for people living with HIV, especially women and children, for close to 30 years.
Judith Hannan, author, teacher, philanthropist – Ms. Hannan is a prolific essayist and is the author of the acclaimed memoir Motherhood Exaggerated, a story of discovery and transformation during her daughter’s cancer treatment. She has a passion and gift for finding and revealing the patient’s voice – she teaches writing about personal experience to homeless mothers and at-risk adolescents as well as to medical students and professionals, and is a judge of The Gold – Hope Tang, MD Humanism in Medicine Essay Contest. Ms. Hannan has a forthcoming book on the subject of narrative medicine, The Write Prescription: Telling Your Story to Live With and Beyond Illness. She also has a long history of involvement in children’s education, health and welfare. She serves on three boards affiliated with the Mt. Sinai Medical Center in New York—the Adolescent Health Center (where she now serves as President of the Advisory Board), the Children’s Center Foundation, and Global Health.
Cambridge Health Alliance, academic community healthcare system – Formed in 1996, Cambridge Health Alliance is a valued and sustainable academic community health system that regularly exceeds the expectations of its patients and communities. With expertise in primary care, as well as mental health and substance abuse treatment, CHA seamlessly meets the needs of diverse, complex and vulnerable populations. Cambridge Health Alliance provides high quality, compassionate, technologically-advanced care to over 150,000 patients in the Boston area. Using academic programs and public health models, CHA effectively demonstrates innovative ways to integrate care and improve the well-being of patients and communities, and is committed to the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s “Triple Aim”: to improve the health of populations, to enhance the patient experience of care, and to reduce or control the costs of care. CHA also serves as home to the Gold Foundation Research Institute.