Primary care physician Matthew S. Ellman awarded Leffell Prize for Clinical Excellence

Yale School of Medicine Dean Robert Alpern (right) presents a citation to Dr. Matthew S. Ellman at the Leffell Prize award ceremony. (Photo by Rob Lisak)

Not long ago, one of Dr. Matthew Ellman’s long-term patients became very ill with progressive liver disease. The patient knew he was dying, but he couldn’t bring himself to talk to his children about it. With Dr. Ellman’s encouragement, he discussed his fears one day in his hospital room.

“He told me he was afraid. I sat with him and held his hand,” Dr. Ellman recalls. “I asked if he’d like a priest to visit, if this would give him comfort, which it did, and I talked with his daughter and held her and we were able to bring him some peace. It was very sad, but also so gratifying to be of service at a time that matters. And it made a difference to his family members after he was gone.”

Being of service to patients, and building deep and trusting relationships with them, is what drives Dr. Ellman. He has been consistently recognized for his exceptional dedication to patient care and has been nominated for the David J. Leffell Prize for Clinical Excellence for each of the past seven years. This year, he was the recipient of the prize, which was awarded by Dean Robert Alpern in a June 26 ceremony.

Read the full story on the Yale School of Medicine website.