2019 SCHA Awards
Outstanding Social Worker

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Mona El-Kurd Mona El-Kurd

Mona El-Kurd

Position: Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Organization: Hoag CARES/Palliative Care Program


List your nominee's experience in Senior Care.
Mona received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, and Honors Bachelor of Social Work and Masters of Social Work from the University of Windsor in Windsor, Ontario Canada. She moved to Orange County in 1987 and has worked predominately in the field of hospice as a social worker and manager for over 30 years. Mona has co-authored a publication “Bio-Psychosocial Approach to Pain Management.”

Describe how your Nominee has exceeded his or her Job Description, becoming a hero to you or others. Provide an example or as much detail as possible of the things that they do that go above and beyond their job description.
"I NEVER would think to do 90% of the things Mona does everyday for her patients." said a fellow co-worker at Hoag's palliative medicine CARES program. Mona is always on a mission! She does things like finding and establishing a relationship with a mattress store, so that a frail, dying, and bed-less patient could have a proper bed donated to finish her final days. She assisted coordinated a very special outing for a patient with a rare neurological disease so he could see one of his favorite bands perform at the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano.

Mona always seeks to bless the lives of those she serves. In fact, Mona's manager Kristyn said, "You give her a task and it truly becomes her quest- she will visit 25 different stores to locate that one specific blouse and FINALLY will find it at Target; she always finds it - it becomes her mission to serve her patients." Like the time she was given a patient who was being evicted from his residence and had no place to go. Mona enlisted the SeaCrest foundation, found subsidized housing, and helped this man have a safe and comfortable place to rest for his final days on this earth while receiving hospice services.

Mona is always on the move - if she's not at the subsidized housing block awarding free rent, the local Target hunting for a top for a patient, or the mattress store securing a nice, new bed, you just may find her down at the skilled nursing facility holding the hand of one of her patients in their final days (18 hours of late nights and early mornings and weekends of her off-duty time) because that patient had no friends or family to be there for her when she departed this life. That is the kind of person Mona is - she sees a need and inserts herself into the lives of the people she serves and makes it her mission to bless their lives in some form or fashion.

Thank you Mona, you are a hero!