Healthcare Professional of the Year

2021 Health Care Professional of the Year

The Health Care Professional of the Year Award is given annually to a person who works to provide efficient delivery of quality health care.


Alison Pachynski, Chief Medical Executive at San Quentin State Prison

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was still considering guidance for responding to COVID-19 in correctional facilities, Dr. Pachynski convened daily huddles for the healthcare and custody leadership.

Before the first positive case at San Quentin, Dr. Pachynski had already established a multidisciplinary approach to preventing the spread of COVID-19 and preparing for a potential outbreak.

Between June and August last year, more than 2,000 patients and 300 staff members were diagnosed with COVID-19.

Throughout these difficult times, Dr. Pachynski maintained a positive approach and an uplifting leadership style. She pushed the importance of self-care and helped her team members maintain a work-life balance during the emergency.

Her guidance helped patients and staff feel safe while also forming crucial partnerships outside of CDCR who helped with the outbreak response.

Since August 2020, COVID-19 patient cases at San Quentin have remained at or near zero. A major part of this is the result of Dr. Pachynski’s efforts.