Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases

Driscoll O’Neil Charitable Foundation

Giving back is second nature

For Christine Driscoll O’Neill, giving is second nature; it is “what she does.”  But it hasn’t always been easy. After years of heartache and hardship, which included “blowing the whistle” on her former employer’s illegal activity of prescribing unnecessary drugs to HIV patients, Chris and her husband, Jim Driscoll, established the Driscoll O’Neill Charitable Foundation. Key to its mission is support for HIV patients. Chris believes her share of the company’s settlement under the False Claims Act was not her money to spend, rather it was a gift from God that carries an obligation and responsibility to help people, especially those with HIV.

In addition to starting her own non-profit career training company called One Life at a Time, Chris’ philanthropic endeavors have greatly benefited the the Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases at Tufts Medical Center.  George Cuchural, MD, a New England Quality Care Alliance (NEQCA) infectious disease physician and former fellow trained in infectious diseases at Tufts, led Chris to Tufts Medical Center where she quickly began supporting projects to enhance teaching, research and clinical care for infectious disease patients.

Her support enables the Medical Center’s infectious disease specialists to post their weekly inner city case conferences on the internet, thereby creating unique learning opportunities about unusual cases for physicians around the world. “Chris’ gift to enhance learning for our students, residents and fellows, as well as for community physicians is invaluable,” says Tufts Medical Center’s David Snydman, MD, Chief, Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases.

Additionally, several post-doctoral fellows interested in HIV and public health have been able to pursue master’s degrees thanks to her funding, and the Division of Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases clinic has been able to offer patients free acupuncture services to help with chronic pain and improve their quality of life. “The improvements that Chris’ donations have brought to our program have been transformational,” Dr. Snydman continues.

“Every human should give back. We have an obligation to give back whether it’s money, volunteering or helping in any way we can. I believe we are put here to help others and that is what I’m doing,” says Chris.

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