Name: Rabih Hassan MD
Tell me about yourself?
About your job: Medical Director of Hospital Medicine & Division Chair, Division of Hospital Services
How long have you been employed at WHS? 6 years
Was it always in the same department? Yes
Education. Tell us about your education, where you went to school:
Bachelor in Biology: American University of Beirut, Lebanon
Medical School: American University of Beirut, Lebanon
Internal Medicine Residency Training: University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Hobbies outside of work: Skiing, Soccer, Tennis, Football and cooking
Family, pets, etc?
I met my soulmate and beautiful wife Nadine all the way back in college. We went to medical school and residency training together. We are blessed with 4 kids: Omar who is 20-years-old, Elise who is 10-years-old, Ryan who is 7-years-old and Mila who is 4-years-old. We also have Benji, our one-year-old dog.
What are some of your guilty pleasures?
I love Mochi ice cream and Flan. I can eat these two all day nonstop… Definitely makes me feel guilty…
What was your first job?
My first job was a unit secretary in an Intensive Care Unit. I used to wait for rounds every day and dream about becoming a physician. I used to enjoy sitting back and watching the attending physicians teaching and sometimes “grilling” their residents.
What was the last thing you were really excited about?
I have never been on a cruise ship. Therefore I was really very excited about our first ever cruise trip as a family. Unfortunately, that long anticipated trip had to be cancelled at the last minute because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
What would be your dream vacation, after we are back to normal?
Honestly, at this point the only thing I am dreaming of is being able to just hang out with family and friends around a fire in the backyard like we used to. Ultimately, there are a lot of places in the world that I would love to visit if I get the chance. On top of the list would be Santorini, Italy and Hawaii. I still want to rebook and go on that cruise trip that we just missed though :)
Tell us about the best vacation you have had in the past.
Few years ago we had the chance to travel back to Lebanon where Nadine and I grew up. That trip was more than 10 years after we left and came here to the US. It was so amazing and magical to revisit the old places and streets where we grew up. To walk on the same beaches and sit on the same benches we once walked and sat on together, to walk around our college and medical school where we left a lot of wonderful memories behind, to enjoy dinner together at restaurants where we once dated so many years ago… That trip reignited a lot of emotions and feelings that you can never replicate. It was so surreal and magical…
What’s one of your best “my co-workers are awesome” story?
Over the last 6 years I watched my team grow and evolve into this high performing unit providing the highest quality care here in our community while ranked in the top decile nationally. I can remember a lot of great stories along the way that demonstrate the “awesomeness” of my coworkers. But lately, the COVID-19 pandemic opened our eyes and shed the light on some hidden great qualities. Part of my job was to develop backup plans and implement schedule and workflow changes to help us handle the pandemic and safely treat our COVID and non-COVID patients. I thought this was going to be a difficult job. I was so amazed by how everyone reacted and stepped up. I was moved by their selfless sacrifices and their quick adaptation and acceptance of major inconvenient changes. This was not just my team; I watched how everyone in the Washington Health System family, including nursing staff, respiratory therapists, administrators, lab technicians, pharmacists etc… came together as one awesome team. That team quickly adjusted and adapted to fearlessly face this deadly disease without deviating a bit from our mission of providing great patient care. I guess it is not surprising to see that kind of response from a team that has been ranked in the top national decile. I am so proud to be part of this team…
What do you want people to know about the COVID-19 pandemic?
Unfortunately, most people are suffering during this difficult time. This has definitely affected all of us to a certain degree. I just want everyone to know that like any other viral pandemic, this terrible one will have an end and this end is coming soon. Fortunately for our community, we have not seen the overwhelming surge that other areas unfortunately had to endure. This is probably due to the less crowded nature of our community and to everybody’s compliance with the mitigating measures. At this point, watching our case numbers and reports, I doubt that we will ever see an unmanageable surge in our community. On the other hand, we can still see a setback and resurgence of cases if we don’t do the right things. Therefore, I ask everyone to continue to stand strong together and continue to comply with the current mitigation efforts and more importantly continue to do so as we hopefully start the gradual reopening process soon. In the meantime, I want everyone to know that the Washington Health System is always available and ready to provide great medical care to anyone who needs it.