Thrive by IU Health

December 18, 2023

Finding ways to make an impact

IU Health Bloomington Hospital

Finding ways to make an impact

Aran Mordoh, IU Health Positive Link community health educator, knows being healthy isn’t just the absence of disease.

Aran Mordoh running HIV testing booth

“Helping patients be their best advocate or feel like they’re empowered to be their best advocate is always my goal,” says the certified health education specialist and IU Health South Central Region Values Leadership Award (VLA) winner.

Mordoh does this by giving patients the information they need to make decisions that work best for them and then connecting them to others who may help in different ways.

“She could easily do her ‘job’ and get a client tested then on their way, but instead, she takes time to get to know people and provide the best care possible,” says one of her VLA nominators.

“It’s not just diagnosing HIV—we can help with medical services, case management services, housing, mental health, general health care, some nutrition stuff, support groups and more,” explains Mordoh. “If it’s something where we can’t get those needs met, I know community partners who may be able to help.”

Mordoh says her team and other community organizations constantly refer to each other in seeking the best fit for individuals based on their needs.

Aran Mordoh posing with group at AIDS Walk

“It’s the mentality of the department I landed in where everyone really wants to help above and beyond as much as they can because we want people to be healthy,” she says. The photo above shows her and her team at an AIDS awareness walk in Bloomington.

That mentality guides her outside of typical duties as well. She and her dog, Hoosier, round weekly at IU Health Bloomington as part of the pet therapy team, and they volunteer at Indiana University for special de-stressing events.

Aran Mordoh with coworkers

“He brings joy wherever he goes,” says Mordoh. “The great thing with pets and doing this work in healthcare is that they’re not going to judge you, and just having that presence makes a big difference for people.”

Their dog therapy sessions did decrease during the pandemic, but Mordoh still found ways to go above and beyond. She took on shifts during surges at the hospitals, where her duties included helping patients communicate with loved ones digitally and restocking personal protective equipment.

“It was neat when all of that came up during the award presentation,” says Mordoh, noting how nice it was to hear that she and her team made a difference with the “extra” things they did for others.

“I always try to do the best I can, but you need a supportive team to make the best impact,” says Mordoh. “And I have that with Positive Link.”

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