2017 Lewis Blackman Award Winners

Each year the Lewis Blackman Awards honor patient safety champions in South Carolina hospitals and health systems who go above and beyond the call of duty to ensure quality care

The awards are named in honor of Lewis Wardlaw Blackman, a bright, gifted 15-year-old who died following an elective surgical procedure in 2000 due to complications related to a medical error. Helen Haskell, Lewis’s mother, has provided inspiration for the awards through her tireless and meaningful work to promote patient safety and quality improvement not only in South Carolina but throughout the country.

Award winners were recognized at a special luncheon during the Transforming Health Symposium April 12 at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center. We are proud to present the 2017 Lewis Blackman Award winners:

  • Daniel M. Smith, Jr., MD is the medical director for Greenville Health System Hospice of the Foothills and the Cottingham Hospice House in Seneca, SC. Dr. Smith’s work has contributed to the first comprehensive inpatient and outpatient palliative care program in the region. He has spent 15 years – through his work with the hospice team, hospital and other providers – improving services and care for patients.
  • Sharon Castle, Pharm.D is the Chief Pharmacy Service and Pharmacy Administrative Residency Director at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center (VAMC). At the VAMC, she has led the Opioid Safety Initiative, a system wide effort to ensure opioid pain medications are used safely, effectively and judiciously at the hospital. Her work has helped Ralph H. Johnson VAMC become fourth in the nation for opioid safety among all VAs.
  • Vicky Ducworth served as a program director at the SC Department of Health and Human Services where she helped design and develop the state’s Healthy Outcomes Plan (HOP). Through HOP, South Carolina’s hospitals have developed community-based plans in association with 68 primary care safety net providers, 19 behavioral health clinics, and other organizations that serve the uninsured.
  • Kelly Loyd is a volunteer at MUSC Children’s Hospital who credits the facility for saving her nine-year-old twins, Annie and Gracie, when they arrived 11 ½ weeks early. She has logged more than 700 hours serving on the Children’s Hospital Family Advisory Council, sat on the Executive Steering Committee, and traveled across the country to examine other children’s hospitals for innovations and best practices.
  • Megan Hunt is President of Clemson’s American Medical Student Association and a dedicated advocate for quality and access to care. She served as the Clemson student liaison to Greenville Health System where a class of 30 students investigated the ability of trauma surgeons to judge the need for CT scans or surgery. She gained more than 100 hours of shadowing experience on research that has the potential to improve safety and quality in trauma care.

Congratulations to the winners of the 2017 Lewis Blackman Awards. We are proud to honor these leaders in improving the quality and safety of healthcare in South Carolina and beyond.