Raquel knows every patient at City of Hope, Corona, by name, and they know her. Through multiple changes in leadership in the last several years, Raquel has been the constant, sometimes seeming to hold the whole institution together single-handedly. She is unafraid to step up and lead, taking action whenever she sees the need. Patients bring concerns to her and often just want to chat and get her take on their care plan, because she makes them feel so comfortable and reassured. 

On one occasion, a patient arriving for their treatment started to have a panic attack while being checked in. She rushed out of the room and back into the elevator—but Raquel saw what was happening, and she jumped in the elevator, too. After a few minutes, both Raquel and the patient reemerged. The patient had been feeling alone, exhausted and scared, and Raquel was there to listen and validate, helping the patient work through the panic, and then come back to get the necessary treatment. 

Raquel is committed to meeting patients where they are and answering their questions, even ones that are difficult to answer, like whether or not CBD might help with sleep and anxiety. Raquel encourages patients to talk to her without embarrassment. And she has reached out to her colleagues to formulate a united response about the use of CBD.

In her time off each year, Raquel goes on a three-week medical mission to South America, where she can use her Spanish skills to help communities in need.