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Adrienne Groccia - Oxford, England

Oxford, England

Career goal: To work in a hospital system before pursuing a PhD in health policy and management.

Internship outline: I interned at the Value Based Healthcare Programme of the University of Oxford, where I spent the summer analyzing end-of-life care systems in England and the United States. The project’s findings were communicated through a white paper that focuses on improvement of the value of end-of-life care for elderly cancer patients in England and the US. 

Value of experience: Having always respected England’s National Health System as one of the best health systems in the world, I was very fortunate for the opportunity to study health care delivery in England. Through attendance of national policy-making meetings, I gained key insights into how end-of-life care is delivered at the national level, and how policymakers lead national reform efforts. On the other end of the spectrum, attending multidisciplinary team meetings at a local hospice helped me understand concrete challenges that small providers face on a daily basis. At this hospice, I observed managers and clinicians who experimented with different methods of care coordination to improve care for their patients. This internship experience taught me that by encouraging creativity and facilitating knowledge sharing, managers can be leaders of innovation in health care delivery. 

Best moment/experience: Attending a national conference for end-of-life care in UK prisons (called “Her Majesty’s Prisons”). Questions raised at this conference highlighted the intersection of all health care disciplines. From ethics to healthcare management, and epidemiology to policymaking, it was clear that to respond to the crisis of an aging prison population, experts from all disciplines were needed, and all opinions were valuable. 

Funding source: The Coca Cola Fund and Macmillan Center