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Princeton Resident Alan Axelrod of Princeton HealthCare System Receives Humanitarian Award

Dec 11, 2008
Princeton resident Alan Axelrod, director of the Community Education & Outreach Program for Princeton HealthCare System, has been honored with the Frances Black Humanitarian Award inAxelrod 0507web Healthcare. Presented by the Friends' Health Connection at its 10th annual awards celebration on November 13, the honor is bestowed annually on healthcare professionals and organizations that "go above and beyond to improve the health and wellness of others."

Axelrod assumed the leadership role as director of the Community Education & Outreach Program in 2003, becoming the first to hold a full-time director's position with the program. In six short years, his leadership and determination has served PHCS well, transforming what was a small community-based service into a wide-reaching, innovative program serving thousands of people each year.

"Princeton HealthCare System made a strong commitment to expanding its role in community health outreach by increasing both the type and number of programs offered each year," said Axelrod. "With this commitment and a team focused exclusively on this mission, the PHCS Community Education & Outreach Program has grown to become one of the largest and most robust programs of its type regionally and nationally."

Today, the PHCS Community Education & Outreach Program serves approximately 35,000 residents through more than 1,000 health and lifestyle programs, screenings and support groups each year. With Axelrod overseeing 73 full-time, part-time and per diem staff members and educators, the program promotes healthy living at every stage of life and enhances the quality of life for men, women, seniors, children, adolescents and diverse populations.

During Axelrod's tenure, the PHCS Community Education & Outreach Program has been honored by the Health Research and Education Trust of New Jersey (HRET), an affiliate of the New Jersey Hospital Association, as one of the state's model programs for providing services to medically underserved populations two years in a row. This year's honor focused on the Community Vision Services Outreach Program, which provided 724 members of the county's minority population with vision screenings and distributed 289 pairs of glasses. The 2007 HRET award recognized the Princeton program's efforts to improve access and quality of care for uninsured, underinsured and minority groups in Hightstown.

"Alan's ability to lead by example and his commitment to bring together a strong, dedicated team, has resulted in an exemplary program that touches the lives of thousands of people in the community every year," said Carol Norris, Vice President, PHCS Marketing & Public Affairs. "His accomplishments this far and his leadership made him a clear candidate for the Frances Black Humanitarian Award."

Before assuming the Community Education & Outreach director's position, Axelrod, a licensed clinical social worker who attended Hunter College, Yeshiva University, and New York University spent a year and a half coordinating PHCS' Senior Link Program at Princeton House Behavioral Health. The partial hospital program for seniors with major anxiety, depression and other mood disorders includes group activities such as psychotherapy, education and activities.

Axelrod spent five years as director of social work and outreach at The Cancer Institute of New Jersey and three years as assistant director of social work at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center prior to joining Princeton HealthCare System.

PHCS is among the most comprehensive healthcare systems in New Jersey, with a full continuum of care that includes acute care hospital services, behavioral healthcare, acute rehabilitation, skilled nursing, home care, hospice care, ambulatory surgery, and fitness and wellness services. Each unit is equipped with advanced diagnostic and treatment tools to provide state-of-the-art healthcare, and 99 percent of the physicians in the system are board certified-the hallmark of professional excellence. Through its affiliations with top academic institutions, PHCS continues setting new standards in patient care. For more information, on PHCS visit or call 1.888.PHCS4YOU (1.888.742-7496).

The Friends' Health Connection is a New Jersey-based, national nonprofit organization offering educational programs and a support network that links individuals with similar health issues.