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Dr. Donald Plumley recognized with Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals US Impact Award

The Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Impact Award recognizes a doctor, nurse or caregiver that provides exceptional care and is supported by CMN Hospitals funds. Presented during Children’s Hospitals Week, this award shines a light on providers for the impact they are making on children’s health in their community.

We are thrilled to share that our very own, Dr. Donald Plumley, Pediatric Surgeon and Trauma Medical Director at Orlando Health Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, was selected as the recipient of the 2020 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Impact Award.

Level 1 Trauma Centers may evoke feelings of high stress, high emotions and maybe even panic. But Dr. Plumley describes it as a beautiful symphony – a scene that feels well-rehearsed, or like a melody that works together in perfect harmony.

Given that Orlando is a destination city for families, he has cared for some of the most injured and ill patients from across the globe, but Dr. Plumley stands out as an outstanding caregiver for his commitment to not only caring for patients and families, but for all of the caregivers he crosses paths with as well. If you spoke with him, he believes the work he does outside of the Trauma Center is as vital in the prevention of accidents and injuries, and well-being for families, as the medical care he performs.

Just last year, Dr. Plumley dedicated time to raising awareness in the community about the uptick in child abuse cases tied to the increased stressors in households because of COVID-19, coupled with the absence of the usual resources available to report child abuse through church and school. Recognizing the volume of cases coming through the hospital nearly quadrupling, he wanted to shine a light on ways that the community can play a role in helping families. Tips to help caregivers manage their stress, like creating a routine for their families, setting simple goals for the day, connecting with people virtually, taking a break if you need one, and letting your children know they will get through this were all suggestions that Dr. Plumley shared with community groups and the local media to help families alleviate the feeling of isolation and heightened stress.

He has spent his 27-year medical career at Orlando Health and has been on the board of directors for Greater Orlando Children’s Miracle Network for 15 years, where he currently serves as the Chairman of the Board. From tours, partner visits and special events, Dr. Plumley is dedicated to supporting CMN partners and their efforts, and ensures he and other caregivers invest in relationships to further fundraising success for Orlando Health Arnold Palmer.

From the very walls that house the Level 1 Trauma Center and the life-saving equipment the Trauma team relies on every day, to the training tools that are utilized for community outreach and education, Dr. Plumley doesn’t have to look very far to see the impact of funds raised by CMN Hospitals partners on his work.

Understanding funding challenges, Dr. Plumley established a grant program to diversify funding for smaller projects with direct patient impact including medical equipment, training resources, educational & outreach tools and underwriting for vital programs. Through this grant program, the Emergency Medicine team was the beneficiary of funding for a pediatric patient simulator, known as Pediatric HAL. Since 2020, more than 850 medical professionals & first responders throughout Central Florida have benefitted from trainings facilitated by Dr. Plumley and his team using this cutting-edge patient simulator, ultimately advancing the level of care patients receive before they are transported to Orlando Health.

Dr. Plumley shared that his hope is with enough education and prevention, we could eliminate the need for a trauma center or emergency department – and that childhood injuries would be avoided altogether. Until that day, his dedication to advancing the medical care that he provides, supporting the clinicians who work alongside him in his field, and providing the community with resources they need to keep kids safe are his daily goals.