How a plumber cares for patients
Patients are Mark Neumann’s first priority, but he isn’t a doctor, nurse or tech.
Instead, he works as a plumber in the U-M Hospitals and Health Centers, doing everything from repairing drains and water lines to installing medical gas systems.
On most days, he works in the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, where he’s gotten to know many patients over the years.
“I chat with them about sports, how they are feeling, or anything else they seem interested in,” he says. “A lot of our long-term patients really appreciate having someone to talk to during their stay.”
Mark’s been with UMHS 15 years and knows first-hand what it’s like to have a sick kid. Years ago, his son was a patient at Mott.
“It touches you because you know what these families are going through,” he says. “Patients don’t come to our hospital unless they really need to be here. We try to make their stay as comfortable as possible and to improve their quality of life. Sometimes that means fixing a shower leak and sometimes that means talking to a patient about their day.”
“No day working here is ever the same,” he says. “I get to meet tons of interesting people. They are what make this job worth it.”