The tremendously warm and toothy smile across Michel “Mike” Mongeon’s face says everything about his character.
His smile is a hard-to-ignore first impression and it’s one of the characteristics that makes him so memorable to patients. Another is his ability to make almost anyone feel comfortable. This skill is particularly important for a porter, who transports patients who may feel a bit uneasy from one part of the hospital to another.
Phyllis Holmes, a former patient of The Ottawa Hospital wrote this about Mongeon in her nomination letter to The Ottawa Hospital’s Guardian Angel Program, a recognition program where patients and families can show their appreciation for doctors, nurses, staff and volunteers who provide exceptional care:
“Before Mike took me down for my echocardiogram, he stopped just past the nursing station and went and got 2 warm blankets because he thought I was going to get cold before we returned. [My husband, Brian,] and he had a very animated conversation.”
In addition to the nomination, Phyllis made a donation to the hospital in Mongeon’s honour to show her appreciation for his kindness.
Mongeon has been a porter at The Ottawa Hospital for 12 years, but he has been making people laugh and feel at ease his entire life. His energetic and spirited personality supports patients who experience the unfamiliar sights and sounds of the hospital.
“When you love your job, it puts a smile on your face. And a smile is contagious,” boasts Mongeon.
Mongeon has a long-term impact on patients. Former patients often greet him by name. They ask if he remembers their time together from years ago. They share jokes or stories of Mongeon’s compassionate deeds that made them feel a little warmer or more comfortable during their hospital stay.
It may take a moment or two, but Mongeon remembers these patient stories in the end. He treats every patient that he transports the same way: he smiles widely, introduces himself, and offers warm jokes, conversation, or the gentle care required to get them on their way.
In fact, he is so popular that patients often ask for him to transport them again.
The Ottawa Hospital’s Guardian Angel Program is a thoughtful way for patients to honour a doctor, nurse, staff member or volunteer who made a positive impact on their experience. By giving a gift and sending a message, patients let the recipient know that the special care given did not go unnoticed. The recipient also receives a custom-crafted Guardian Angel pin to proudly wear on their lapel, signifying to others that they deliver compassionate care to patients at The Ottawa Hospital.
Donations through the Guardian Angel Program help to purchase life-saving equipment, enhance patient care areas, and fund vital medical research that will lead to new treatments and cures.
Congratulations and thank you for your dedication to every patient, Mike!