In striving to become America's healthiest academic medical campus and consistent with the MUSC mission and Imagine 2020 Strategic Plan, the Office of Health Promotion (OHP) provides dynamic, visionary leadership for MUSC by establishing a framework of wellness for the entire MUSC enterprise. OHP seeks to reach across departments to lead an interdisciplinary effort and create a comprehensive wellness initiative and culture of wellness that will improve the health of the MUSC community and serve as a model for other organizations.
Mission Statement: Provide access to information, resources, and support to foster a movement toward a culture of wellness within the internal and external community.
Vision Statement: Create a culture of wellness to improve the health of the lives we touch.
As a designated Center of Excellence by the South Carolina Hospital Association Working Well Initiative, the MUSC Office of Health Promotion provides leadership in our community and across the state to create healthy workplace environments, positively impacting the health and wellness of a significant portion of our state’s population. MUSC has achieved and maintained Gold status in all four pillars of the Working Well program for the past three years. Our Working Well successes have also been recognized by Prevention Partners with the Hospital Prevention Excellence award in 2013 and Agent of Change recognition in 2014.
In addition to serving as a resource for healthy hospitals, we are impacting the health of Charleston area businesses through the development of the Charleston Healthy Business Challenge and statewide through Dr. Johnson’s service on the State Obesity Plan SCale Down's Worksite Advisory Board. At the national level, MUSC became a founding member of the National Consortium for Building Healthy Academic Communities, a transformational collaborative to advance higher education best practices and standards in health and well-being whose mission is to equip academic institutions with evidence-based strategies and resources to improve population health and well-being of faculty, staff, students, alumni, and the communities they serve. Dr. Johnson is currently serving on the BHAC advisory committee.
Located at 17 Ehrhardt Street, Suite 5, the Office of Health Promotion houses MUSC Employee Wellness, MUSC Urban Farm, and Sodexo Wellness Dietitian at MUSC and serves as an organization-wide resource for multi-disciplinary health promotion and wellness programs and initiatives. Full-time staff include Dr. Susan Johnson, Director of Health Promotion, Suzan Whelan, Wellness Coordinator, and Debbie Petitpain, RD, Wellness Dietitian.
Dr. Susan Johnson is the Director of Health Promotion and Assistant Professor of Graduate Studies in the College of Health Professions. In her role at MUSC, Dr. Johnson directs and manages system-wide initiatives related to organizational wellness and provides leadership in the development and implementation of a comprehensive and collaborative approach to promoting health to students, employees, visitors, and the external community. Dr. Johnson has conducted numerous presentations at the local, state, and national level, is active in community and professional activities, and serves as an elected and appointed leader in multiple community and state organizations and projects. She received her undergraduate degree from UNC Charlotte, master’s degree from The Citadel, and Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina. Dr. Johnson was recently named Smoke Free Advocate of the Year by the Smoke Free Lowcountry Coalition, winner in the Rising Star category of Influential Women in Business by the Charleston Regional Business Journal, Prevention Partners Agent of Change, and 2015 Health Influencer by the Charleston Post and Courier. Her work at MUSC has also been recognized through multiple prevention awards and publications, both locally and nationally.
Debbie Petitpain is a registered dietitian with Sodexo at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. As the Wellness Dietitian in the Office of Health Promotion, she develops policies and programs to advance health on the MUSC campus and in the community. In her work as a dietitian over the last 11 years, she has provided direct patient care to those undergoing dramatic diet and lifestyle changes in an effort to lose weight, improve their medical problems, and get healthier. She graduated from the College of Charleston, received her Masters in Nutrition from Boston University, and completed her dietetic training in Honolulu, Hawaii. At home, she and her husband model to their two young daughters how food nourishes the body, gives us energy, helps us grow, and connects us to our community.She believes the healthiest foods are those that come from as close to the ground as possibe (and are eaten with a fork!).
Kaitlin DaPore brings more than five years of leadership experience within the Wellness Community to the Medical University of South Carolina, having served as director of a Charleston area farm-to-school nonprofit organization in addition to being a board certified Health and Wellness Coach through the National Consortium of Health and Wellness Coaches and Emory University. She is a New Hampshire native and graduate of the College of Charleston, and is fueled by a passion for empowering people with better health. Kaitlin has worked directly with thousands of individuals and community organizations at MUSC and beyond to develop and implement programs aimed at making achieving optimal health both accessible and sustainable. While not on campus, you can find Kaitlin teaching a group fitness class, picking up produce at the local farmers market or outside enjoying beautiful Charleston with her husband and their dog, as she believes that small, everyday healthy choices serve as the foundation for a lifetime of health and well-being.