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Caring Beyond the Bedside

Yale New Haven Hospital was established in 1826 as a 13-bed facility to care for the poor. One hundred and ninety years later we find ourselves seeking new ways to address the needs of our patients, friends and neighbors in an increasingly complex world. It can be a challenge to harness our advances in medicine and our resources in efficient ways to serve the people and neighborhoods that surround us. Much careful consideration and study went into the development of our community programs ... 

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Yale New Haven Hospital was awarded the 2017 Foster G. McGaw Prize for Excellence in Community Service from the American Hospital Association. The McGaw Prize is awarded annually to a single healthcare organization that provides innovative programs that significantly improve the health and well-being of its community.
breylin jones

New Haven Promise: Partnership

New Haven Promise kept me on track with my goals and education. It made a positive impact on my life.

— Breylin

Breylin grew up in New Haven and, like many of his peers, wondered how he would pay for college upon graduating high school. While attending high school, the City of New Haven announced the creation of New Haven Promise, a comprehensive program that would provide free tuition to a four-year university for residents of New Haven attending public school. The students are required to complete community service each year while maintaining a sufficient grade point average. Breylin was up to the task and joined the first class of graduating seniors to qualify for the program. Four years and three internships later, Breylin graduated from Central Connecticut State University. The team at Promise helped him obtain an interview at Yale New Haven Hospital just before graduation, and the combination of his internship experience and skills learned helped him enter his career right out of school.


The staff here help you every step of the way ... It’s an excellent experience.

— Priscilla

priscilla torres

Priscilla was accepted into the School-to-Career internship program at Yale New Haven Hospital, while a junior in high school, just two blocks from the hospital. She had always been interested in nursing and midwifery and learned more about this during a job shadow. During her senior year, Priscilla’s mother was diagnosed with breast cancer and the family endured ongoing hardships. The team Priscilla was working with took her under its wings doing everything they could to help, even ensuring that she could still go to prom that year.

By the time Priscilla graduated, she had completed a certified nursing assistant course and was hired as a patient care associate, working in Yale New Haven Hospital’s Women’s Center. She has since begun coursework at a local community college working towards her associate’s degree in nursing where a number of her instructors are veteran nurses from Yale New Haven Hospital who also teach at the college.  Priscilla has co-authored two research papers, presenting one of them at an international meeting in Capetown, South Africa. After graduation, she plans to pursue a career as a certified registered nurse anesthetist.

In the photo: Priscilla with her School-to-Career mentor and current supervisor at Yale New Haven Women’s Center, Nancy Busch, Patient Services Manager.

ana rodrguez

H.O.M.E. | Habitat for Humanity

Getting my own home through Habitat and H.O.M.E. is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

— Ana Rodriguez

Ana Rodriguez always dreamed of a home of her own for family. As a single mother taking care of a son with special needs while working full time she was daunted by the process. As a transition coordinator for oncology patients at YNHH, Ana is constantly on the move and always helping others, however she was not aware of the best ways in which to help herself in realizing her dreams.

When Ana heard about YNHH’s H.O.M.E. program, she learned how she could get help and navigate all the steps involved in purchasing a home. Further, she learned about how Habitat for Humanity was building high quality, affordable homes in New Haven. It seemed like a perfect match. After a rigorous application and interview process Ana was approved as a buyer for a Habitat home. She was interested in a Habitat build taking place on Vernon Street, in New Haven’s Hill neighborhood, just one block from her employer. Ana invested over 400 hours of sweat equity helping to build her dream home, and she was joined by more than 130 YNHH employees, many from her own department, as well as her father and other family members. Ana is financing her new home through the H.O.M.E. program and, after five months of construction, moved into her home in January 2017.

In the photo: Ana Rodriguez (second from right) works as a transition coordinator at YNHH, helping patients navigate the healthcare system and offer best access to the resources needed to fulfill their individual care plans. Also in the photo (left to right): Ana’s son Jerrell Rodriguez; William Casey, executive director, Habitat for Humanity of Greater New Haven and Michael Holmes, senior vice president, Operations and Saint Raphael Campus chief integration officer.


ConnCAT taught me that if you want something bad enough, to never give up, to never set limits, and to always see things through.

— Jason

jason benjamin
Jason was born and raised in New Haven and always knew he wanted the best that life had to offer. From a young age he felt the pressures of those around him who turned to negative behavior and even crime as a means to get by. However Jason always looked for positive role models and knew that faith and hard work would lead to success. After graduating from high school, Jason held a number of different jobs, most notably as a security officer in some of New Haven’s public housing buildings. Although he enjoyed the work, he felt stuck in a role that was not providing greater opportunities.

One day in 2016, while visiting a friend he enrolled in a local training program through the Connecticut Center for Arts and Technology (ConnCAT), he looked around and “just felt right.” Jason spoke to the staff at ConnCAT and learned about the phlebotomy training program. He applied, was accepted and fell in love with the program right away, inspired by the staff at ConnCAT and the promise of a new career. Faith and hard work have paid off for Jason. He is working as a phlebotomist in a suburban hospital and has since moved his family to the area. Jason and his wife are living in their first home in a peaceful town, growing their family as he grows in his career.

Doug Bethea

Nation Drill Squad and Drum Corps

With the continued support from [YNHH] we will be able to continue to change the lives of our inner city youth.

— Doug

Doug was born and bred in New Haven, and grew up in Elm Haven, a public housing development known as a high-crime but tight-knit community in the city’s Dixwell neighborhood. “Dougie,” as he is known, has dedicated his life to helping young people make better choices. After graduating from James Hillhouse High School and leaving Connecticut to go to college, he came back to New Haven to dedicate his career to providing kids with opportunities.

Thirty years ago, Doug started the Nation Drill Squad and Drum Corps to keep kids involved in a positive outlet for their energy. He has coached multiple generations of kids – and he refers to all of them as his kids – in drilling, stepping and drumming. Their efforts pay off year after year. Nation Drill Squad and Drum Corps annually competes in the national step team championships, and they consistently return to New Haven with trophies in tow.

Doug also works as a street outreach worker, a program of New Haven Family Alliance, where he is on-call 24 hours a day, seven days per week, working to mitigate and end gang violence. He and his coworkers use street-level intelligence to intervene when feuds start between rival groups, to stave off potentially homicidal activity. Doug unfortunately knows the outcomes of such behaviors all too well, having lost his oldest son to gun violence in 2006. Doug’s work in both roles has him collaborating throughout the city to make life better for New Haven’s youth and the city as a whole.