January 09, 2017 | Clinics / Staff Stories
Mountain Park is full of amazing people that come to work every day to serve our community. From the moment you walk into our Gateway Clinic, one person in particular always stands out. Lina Ali, our Somali Case Manager, has a personality and smile that can be spotted from a mile away. Making sure all patients feel welcome and at home is a top priority for Lina, so she’s usually rushing around trying to help everyone as much as she can.
From Somalia to Phoenix
Lina began her life in Arizona in 2004. She came to Phoenix as a refugee from Somalia with her three children—two sons and a daughter.
“My family and I came here because we were resettled by the International Rescue Committee,” she recounts. “I feel blessed that I landed in Phoenix because I have a wonderful life now. I work at a great organization, my children have a safe place to grow up, and I am able to give back and help others, just how people once helped me.”
Prior to working at Mountain Park, Lina began her career path at a local hotel as a housekeeper. After a year there, she began wearing various hats working at Montebello Elementary School. For six years she was an Instructional Assistant working with refugee kindergarteners, as well as an Interpreter helping ESL refugee children with communication barriers. In 2012 she came to Mountain Park, helping us better care for our patients, especially our Somali patients.
“I began working at Mountain Park as a Customer Service Representative,” Lina explained. “Because of the close relationships I formed with our Somali population, I was promoted to be a designated Somali Case Manager in June of 2015.”
With Lina’s help, we are able to give the growing, tight-knit Somali community quality, affordable care while closing the gap between uncertainty and trust.
A Team Player
Lina has the ability to quickly become a friend and help everyone. She is there with open arms to give a reassuring hug or words of encouragement. In today’s world, we all need a little extra reassurance, and Lina is always someone you can turn to in times of need.
“I met Lina four years ago,” Muktar Sheikh, Program Director for the Somali Association of Arizona said. “She is the first contact for us when we need help with health or a doctor’s information. She never says no to our families, and during her free time Lina visits families in need and finds resources for them.”
A great example of her dedication to our patients came from our very own Dr. Harpenau. He shared a story with us about Lina going above and beyond for a patient, something she does on a daily basis.
One of our patients was at the hospital getting ready to deliver a baby. Deka, new to the country, had no family here, and she was alone in the late stages of pregnancy. As a Mountain Park patient, we were taking care of all of her prenatal needs.
“Her pregnancy was overdue but she was resistant to be induced since she did not understand our medical practice patterns,” Dr. Harpenau remembers. “Lina had spent time in the office with her and was able to convince her to be induced earlier, something that’s not typically done in the Somali community.”
Dr. Harpenau went on to explain that although Lina did not know the patient, she was with her to lend support during this life changing event. She stayed at the hospital late into the night to help translate and comfort the scared patient. She came back day after day, even during her lunch hour, to care for and reassure Deka.
“Lina said she felt obliged to help because she remembers when she first moved to our country and felt alone, and didn’t want the new mom to feel that way.”
This one story represents Lina in a nutshell. She is never asked to help in situations like this, but she always goes the extra mile to provide the needed support.
“I have always had the highest respect for Lina as a colleague,” Dr. Harpenau added. “Now I have the highest praise for her as a caring human being.”
“Working for Mountain Park has been so rewarding,” Lina told us. “I’ve always wanted to work in healthcare, even when I was a little girl. I like being involved and helping patients. One day I hope to go back to school and become a social worker, but for now I will continue helping our patients and telling everyone about the many resources Mountain Park has to offer.”
Thank you, Lina, for your hard work and dedication to all of our patients. Mountain Park is a million times better for having you as a part of it.
Do you know someone who needs healthcare or wants to schedule an appointment? Call us 24/7: 602-243-7277.
Hadaad rabtid inaad ku Aqrisato afka soomaaliga, Halkani Riix.