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Make-A-Wish OKI Names Local Social Worker as Medical Professional of the Year

FORT WAYNE Ind. (May 29, 2014) - The Make-A-Wish® Ohio, Kentucky & Indiana Chapter has named Michelle Hoffman of Lutheran Children's Hospital as Medical Professional of the Year in Indiana. The surprise announcement was made at the Indianapolis BIG Wish® Gala.

As a social worker, Michelle has referred more than 50 children to Make-A-Wish. "Michelle has seen the positive difference a wish makes in her patients and has become a referral leader in the Fort Wayne pediatric medical community," says Senior Medical Outreach Manager Kim Pettingell.

According to the 2011 Wish Impact Study, a combined 89 percent of doctors, nurses and health professionals surveyed say they believe a wish experience can influence wish kids' physical health.

"Granting wishes fills these kids with hope and joy, recharging their fighting spirit, says Pettingell.  "It helps strengthen families, unite communities and brings a renewed faith in humanity - a powerful impact. Michelle's efforts are making a real difference and she is much deserving of this honor."

To date, the Ohio, Kentucky & Indiana chapter has granted more than 12,000 wishes to kids in the tri-state area. Children between the ages of 2½ and 18 with a life-threatening medical condition can be referred to Make-A-Wish by a parent or legal guardian, a medical professional, a close family member or the potential wish kid.

For more information on Make-A-Wish or how to refer a child, please visit indiana.wish.org, Follow Us on Twitter at @makeawishohkyin or Like Us on Facebook at facebook.com/makeawishohkyin.

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