Meet Brooke Hill, PA-C, a hospitalist physician assistant at Mercy Health – St. Rita’s Medical Center.
“I’ve been with the ministry for five years now, and this is the only position I’ve had since I graduated in 2018,” Brooke shares.
Having grown up in Lima, Ohio, she came home after graduation to help take care of the people in her community.
“I felt that St. Rita’s Medical Center was more of a family atmosphere then any of the big market hospital systems where I did clinicals,” she explains.
And family is very important to Brooke. Her father practiced preventative medicine in the U.S. Army, so working with and helping people is something that she’s known her entire life. Also, Brooke was very close to her grandfather who was diagnosed with heart failure when she was just sixteen.
“My grandmother and I encouraged him to get a pacemaker defibrillator,” she recalls. “During his procedure, I was at the hospital with my grandmother and during his procedure he went into cardiac arrest and a Code Blue was called. It was the first time I realized just how important a job in medicine is. You are saving people’s lives!”
Throughout Brooke’s five-year career, there have been lots of memories that have stuck with her.
But one in particular took place during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“A hospital cancer patient of mine was COVID-19 positive and his son’s wedding was a few days away,” Brooke remembers. “He was very sick and also very upset about missing the wedding, as you can imagine. Then, a few days before the wedding, I had a God moment and thought ‘why can’t we bring the wedding to him?’”
“So, that’s what we did,” she continues. “I gathered my family and friends together to help with all the things we would need for a hospital wedding, such as flowers, a singer and a pastor. I also made sure we could host it in St. Rita’s Medical Center Garden and do it socially distanced so everyone could stay safe. The day of our hospital wedding, the patient looked the best he had ever looked during his stay. It was such a beautiful moment we were able to create for this family, so it was completely worth all the extra work and protocols we had to go through in order to make it happen.”
For Brooke, it is moments like this, when she is able to help people during their most difficult time, that gives her the most fulfillment for her work.
“I always tell my PA students that everybody remembers the days they were in the hospital, even years later,” she shares. “While working in the hospital is a normal part of my day, being in a hospital is anything but normal for our patients. When they are here, they are going through a very vulnerable time. As providers, we have to remember this and keep this in perspective. In our moments helping them, we need to be with them emotionally and help them understand what is happening as best we can.”
Even when Brooke is away from work, she still spends time helping others.
This past summer, Brooke went to Honduras to serve on a mission trip with her church. She also when in 2018 and 2019 with the same group.
“What is great about the nonprofit we partner with is that they do community assessments with the leaders of the communities we serve before we even get there,” she explains. “That way, the work we are doing is meeting these communities where they are and allows us to work along side of them to reach their goals. I was so proud of our recent trip as we were able to paint a school building, lay the foundation for a church, build outhouses and plant 100 trees.”
As for when Brooke is truly off the clock and taking some time for herself? She does have a few interesting hobbies, including intramural volleyball.
“I also love going out on our boat on Grand Lake St. Mary’s with my husband,” she says when asked about her ideal day off. “Also, watching sports and hanging out with family and friends.”
Brooke shares she is a huge sports fan. She loves the Ohio State Buckeyes, Atlanta Braves (thanks to her husband) and growing up, she never missed a Cincinnati Reds game on TV.
“I also love watching the NFL in general, but don’t really have a team I cheer for,” she adds.
As for movies and music, for Brooke it has to be Harry Potter and any country or Christian music.
“Every September 1st, I watch the Harry Potter movies because September 1st is always the day that Harry goes back to school,” she shares.
Happy Advanced Practice Providers Week to all our APPs, like Brooke, for their continued dedication to improving the lives of others in her community and beyond!
Learn about the health care services we provide at Mercy Health.