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Clockwise from top left, James Kohl, Carrie Vick, Susan Rucker, Carole Seddon and Helen Michalisko.

True Champions
Five hospital social workers reflect on their profession’s dramatic transformation

An affable, often homeless man who lives on Social Security disability, D. is a 10-year veteran of the busy Moore Clinic, an outpatient clinic for people with HIV/AIDS. Practically every day, he drops by. Often, he sees Susan Rucker, clinical manager for the AIDS Services social work program.

Over the years, Rucker has been trying to help. She’s made arrangements for housing, food and health insurance, but D., Rucker says, is willful. “He seeks help, then denies it. At the same time, you know he’s hungry. You know he’s cold. You know he doesn’t have money.”

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