Graduation Date

Fall 12-13-2020

Grading Professor

Salma Abdelnour Gilman

Subject Concentration

Health & Science

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


In May 2019 my great grandmother, Carmel Ruffo, went to the hospital for a bowel impaction. One month and one stroke later she died. Since then, my great uncle–her son–has worked tirelessly seeking answers about the nature of his mother’s death. But the healthcare industry is a labyrinth of mind-boggling jargon, complex policies, and too-often dead ends.

In this story, the reader follows my uncle and me, just one of the hundreds of thousands of grieving families who suspect medical error contributed to their loved one’s death, as we navigate the bureaucracy of New York’s healthcare system and dig for answers about my grandmother’s death.

Capstone_passage_1.mp3 (1855 kB)
Audio passage 1

Capstone_passage_2_final.mp3 (1628 kB)
Audio passage 2

Capstone_passage_3.mp3 (1408 kB)
Audio passage 3

IMG_6845.jpg (3270 kB)
Uncle Mikey's journal

OG_6.png (887 kB)
Me and Old Grandma

IMG_7427.jpg (2663 kB)
Uncle Mikey profile

IMG_7481.jpg (2833 kB)

IMG_7450.jpg (2783 kB)
Old Papa

OG_2.png (906 kB)



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