Highlighting the Heroes: Rutgers & University of Washington Grad Up for a $25K Award

Our H.E.R.O. Award -Honoring Excellent Resident Observations – was launched to highlight the personal sacrifices and educational commitment during a medical resident’s professional adult life.  We realize, considering the fast moving changes in healthcare,  how courageous medical residents are to embark upon a career in medicine with such an uncertain future.  This award is our way of recognizing that courage.

We wanted to take a moment to introduce you to our nominees individually:

Medical Residency Award

Lily Daniali

Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery/ Newark, NJ – Montclair, NJ
Dr. Daniali attended University of Washington School of Medicine. This particular school trains the doctors for 5 states (Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana & Idaho). Her medical school rotations ranged from learning how to care for critically ill patients in the burn ICU, ORs, and trauma bay of Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, to spending 6 months of her outpatient rotations in Sandpoint, Idaho for a rural medicine experience, and to flying in a small commuter plane from Billings, Montana to North Dakota on her neurology rotation with attendings to staff small outreach clinics in North Dakota. Being able to witness and treat a variety of illnesses in a very diverse population made this medical school most memorable for Dr. Daniali. Plastic & reconstructive surgery was the perfect match for Dr. Daniali because it fit her creative personality and let her individualize the treatment plan for each of her patients. Dr. Daniali wanted a field where she could have an enormous impact and chance to return normalcy back to a patient’s life after a devastating injury or after being born with a deforming birth defect. To Dr. Daniali practicing medicine, specifically plastic & reconstructive surgery, is the ultimate fusion of scientific knowledge, artistry, and humanity. It is obvious that everyday when she enters the hospital, she is excited to go see each of her patients and then go to the operating room. The greatest motivation for Dr Daniali to enter medicine was her experience with a serious illness as a child. According to Lily,  she remembered needing her pediatrician more than her own mother when she was sick, and that feeling of profound gratitude and respect toward her doctor made a huge, lasting impression. When Dr. Daniali is finished with her training it will total 7 years post-graduate training after medical school. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. To complete this marathon one needs both internal & external motivation: internally she is driven by the desire to do the very best for her patients; externally each time she helps a wounds heal, see a deformity corrected in the operating room, and open the exam room door to her patient smiling she is reaffirmed that she is on the right track. Dr. Daniali is an extremely humble and caring individual. She feels that while there have been sacrifices, she is incredibly lucky and blessed to have the opportunity to be the person that patients put their trust in when they are the most vulnerable. That responsibility really is an honor to her and it is evident that she puts patient’s needs way ahead of her own. Vote for Lily here. If you know a resident that deserves to be recognized, please nominate your candidate here.