Ob/Gyn Dispatches During COVID-19: Charlie Asencio

Each day during the COVID-19 pandemic, we'll share an update from a member of our team in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Columbia University Irving Medical Center. Today's note is from Charlie Asencio, Division Administrator for Westchester in the Department of Ob/Gyn at NYP/CUIMC.

A sign Charlie's children placed in the window of their home.
A sign Charlie's children placed in the window of their home.

I began with the Department of Ob/Gyn at Columbia in June 2003 as a file temp. One of my earlier memories of working here was walking down the halls of PH16 to deliver a package, when a physician stopped me and asked how I was doing by name and told me to keep up the good work. I know that this may not be something that strikes most people as an outstanding memory, but for a kid, and a temp at that, having a conversation with the Chair of the department that knew my name without ever being introduced - well, that is one of my fonder memories, and something that I appreciate about this department. The fact that we all take the time to speak with each other and check in no matter the title, position, or status makes this place feel like more of a second home than a job.

I personally owe so much to this department. After all, I met my wife and we had our children here. For all that is happening in the world around us right now, I hold dear to me the fact that we not only all make a difference in our patients' lives daily, but that we also all take care of and look out for each other. In a socially-distant present where in-person gatherings are far away, I can say that the friends and family I have made here in the Ob/Gyn department who continue to check in just to say hello and thank you, keep me going.

We may not know when this will all go back to "normal," but I can say that I am happy that I get to be a part of this organization, even though a small part, and that I make a difference in people’s lives and am someone that my kids can look up to.

Charlie Asencio