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December 2018 Director of Surgical Services News Roundup

February 5, 2019


December 2018 Director of Surgical Services News Roundup

This month, we saw heroic nurses saving lives, many awards won, and staff and community coming together to save a hospital. Read more about the December 2018 director of surgical services news below:

Sentara Obici Hospital Nurse Saves Patient By Speaking Up

At Sentara Obici Hospital in Suffolk, Virginia, outpatient surgery nurse Gretchen Hinson-Budy saved a patient’s life by following her intuition. After a surgery, a patient was complaining about tingling in her feet and was walking oddly. Although the tingling feeling can be normal, Hinson-Budy knew that something was not right.

Thanks to excellent training, Hinson-Budy felt comfortable enough to speak up. She reassessed the patient and ordered an MRI, which showed a hematoma on her spine! If Hinson-Budy had not discovered the problem, this could have caused far more severe issues for the patient.

Director of Surgical Services for the hospital Dianne Boone is very proud of Hinson-Budy’s actions. Boone wasn’t the only one that recognized the importance of this situation. Hinson-Budy received the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association’s “Virginians Speak Up for Safety” award for the third quarter of 2018.

Original story can be found here.

HomeTown Health Annual Conference Award-Winners

Each fall, HomeTown Health holds a conference for hospital employees and business partners. The 2018 conference took place at Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia. Over 200 people attended. The conference includes standard fare such as workshops and panels, but it also has a special awards ceremony.

We would love to congratulate Jefferson Hospital in Lousiville, Georgia for taking the 2018 HomeTown Health Hospital of the Year prize! Jefferson Hospital is know for not only great leadership, but their commitment to providing excellent care for the patients of rural Georgia.

Another notable winner, Angie Radford, RN, from Wills Memorial Hospital in Washington, Georgia, received the CNO of the Year award. She assisted Wills Memorial in becoming a tech-forward hospital. Additionally, she has implemented new staff leadership and education programs.

Moreover, HomeTown health offers an annual Leadership Development program open to employees of their hospitals. Participants are nominated by their hospital to participate. In 2018, Timothy Brantley, Director of Surgical Services for Effingham Health System graduated from this program. Congratulations!

Original story can be found here.

St. Elizabeth Boardman Surgical Services Recognized by Press Ganey

More congratulations are in order, this time to St. Elizabeth Boardman Hospital in Boardman, Ohio. The facility was awarded the Press Ganey Guardian of Excellence Award for surgical services!

Press Ganey, a healthcare consulting firm, annually recognizes the top healthcare facilities in the nation. The Guardian of Excellence award is given to the top 5% of hospitals in the fields of patient experience, employee and physician engagement, and clinical quality performance over the past year.

The surgical services department received recognition for their patient experience. Director of Surgical Services Michelle Aurin said, “[Our] mission drives our care delivery and we continually remain committed to continuing this level of experience for those needing care.”

Original story can be found here.


Long Island Jewish Valley Stream Accquires New DaVinci Xi

Many people fondly remember the beloved robot maid Rosie, from the Jetsons cartoons. At Long Island Jewish Valley Stream, Rosie isn’t just a fading memory, she’s the inspiration for the name of their new DaVinci Xi surgery robot.

Although they have had other DaVinci robots at the facility, Rosie is a newer, better model. Not only is her installation simple, but preparation for surgery is much quicker than before. Additionally, her improved versatility offers ease of use during surgery and an improved 3D camera.

However, one of the best outcomes of this upgrade is that the patients experience less pain. This is thanks to Rosie’s precision and truly minimal minimally invasive techniques.

Original story can be found here.


Nurse Saves Volunteers Life at Tri-City Medical Center

December was a month of nurses with heroic instincts! At Tri-City Medical Center, volunteer Mel Van Horn told nurse Alyce Budde that he wanted to head home early from his volunteer shift. Instead of just letting him go, she asked him what was wrong. Although Van Horn didn’t know it, he was suffering from heart failure – a fact that Dr. Deb Feller, the hospital’s Director of Surgical Services, confirmed after looking him over.

Thanks to Budde’s intervention, Van Horn went straight to the emergency room for treatment. Heart failure is a serious condition that can lead to death if it is not caught and properly managed.

Original story can be found here.


North Dakota Critical Access Hospitals Now Offering Surgical Services

For the first time in over 20 years, rural North Dakota will have access to surgical services. Thanks to a program with the University of North Dakota School of Medicine, Tioga Medical Center and other critical access hospitals throughout the state will be able to offer surgical services. The goal is to make sure nobody has to drive over 50 miles to see a surgeon.

The plan, created by Dr. Mary Aaland, is to have operating rooms located at several hospitals across the state. Then, surgeons can visit on a monthly basis to perform operations for patients in those communities. Thanks to having state-of-the-art technology, over 65% of patients can return home after the surgeries without the need for extra hospitalization.

Original story can be found here.


Curry Health District Audit Shows Improvements and Challenges

In 2016, Curry Health District, located on the southern Oregon coast, received a bond and loan to build a new hospital. Incurring debt is often seen as a bad thing, but in this case it helped the district find creative solutions to improve their existing services.

In addition to building a new critical access facility in Gold Beach, they also modernized an already existing facility in Brookings. Moreover, they closed an additional facility that enabled the district to consolidate all of the surgical services into the new hospital.

In 2018, the results of the changes revealed themselves in an audit. With two new operating rooms and a special procedures room in the new facility, surgical procedures grew. There were 1,631 procedures performed and the quality of service was much higher than in the now-shuttered surgical center.

Original story is no longer online.


New Technology Allows For Better Lung Cancer Detection

At Moses Taylor Hospital in Scranton, Pennsylvania, patients can breathe easy. Recently, this Commonwealth Health facility obtained new equipment that can more easily detect lung cancer. Additionally, it can also find lung infections, blockages, bleeding, and other ailments.

The technique, called navigational bronchoscopy, uses electromagnetic CT scans and 3D imagery to give instant diagnoses to patients. Additionally, it can place small markers on the lungs to further assist with treatment when lesions are found.

Director of Surgical Services Gordon Travis, RN, said previously they had to do open lung biopsies. The biopsies are an invasive procedure that can take weeks to receive results. The recovery time is also much shorter. “These patients can go home the same day and are routine next day back to regular activities,” said Travis.

Original story can be found here.


New ASC Opens in North Suffolk

Sentara BelleHarbor recently completed building a new ambulatory surgery center on their campus. It’s part of a 92,000-square-foot building that broke ground in May 2017.

The new ASC specializes in low-acuity cases such as hernia repair and podiatry issues. The high-tech rooms feature 600-square-feet of humidity controlled space with shadowless lighting and backup generators. Additionally, they have state-of-the-art computers that can put photos and information from the surgeries directly into the patients’ electronic records instantly.

Additionally, the location of the center is critical. Previously, patients had to drive an additional 15-20 minutes across a large, congested bridge to access surgical services.

Original story can be found here.


IU Health Constructing Second Cancer Center

In Carmel, Indiana, IU Health is constructing a new facility that could be a game-changer for cancer patients. Currently, only one cancer center exists in the Indianapolis area, located downtown, a far drive for patients living outside of the city.

In addition to being more convenient, the new building will be a centralized location for any kind of treatment needed. Aside from chemotherapy, there will be surgical services, counseling, nutrition services, and art therapy.

Currently under construction, the building will open in January of 2020.

Original story found here.


Advent Health Lake Wales Surgical Services Bring Winter Cheer

At Advent Health Lake Wales (formerly Lake Wales Medical Center) in Lake Wales, Florida, the hospital held a toy drive contest in December. Each department not only brought in toys for underprivileged children, but also created a display with the theme “Frosty’s Winter Wonderland.”

The Surgical Services department won a delicious prize – a pizza party- for their sparkly Frosty-themed diorama. They created a likeness of Frosty out of gauze and added lots of silver tinsel for a glittery touch.

Although things like this contest might seem frivolous, seeing a happy display can pick up the spirits of patients and families. It’s especially important during the holidays, which can be a difficult time of year when you’re ill.

Original story can be found here.


United Hospital Center Opens New Surgical Center

United Hospital Center in Bridgeport, West Virginia, recently put the finishing touches on a brand-new surgery center. Initially, it will have just one operating room, but there are plans to add an additional two suites.

In the past several years, an increase in growth made it clear that they needed to expand the surgical services department. According to Director of Surgical Services Dr. Lori Helmick, “Surgical growth from last year into this year has been about a 7 percent growth. For (endoscopy) growth, over the last couple of years has been a 19 percent increase. We have several new physicians who have started this past year, so with that we needed to move and develop space for them to work and provide service.”

With so many varied patient needs, it’s imperative to have a flexible environment. The new surgical suite allows for any type of surgery, although the focus will be on neurosurgery for now, freeing up more space in the existing surgical suites. The other operating rooms will open in 2020-2021.

Original story can be found here.


Coalition Formed to Save Surgical Services at Ascension Wisconsin Hospital

In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, it can be difficult to access quality health care, depending on your location and income bracket. St. Joseph’s Hospital serves a wide range of clients. Many of the patients that live in the surrounding area are low-income and rely on the hospital when health care needs arise. Additionally, the facility has the busiest emergency room in the state.

In April, the hospital announced that they might be ending surgical services, much to the shock of not only the community, but the staff. Nurses lost hours, then found themselves completely out of a job.

However, the community came together to hold a coalition meeting to discuss the situation and possible courses of action. The group, named Support St. Joe’s, includes members of the community as well as several organizations, such as Wisconsin Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals and Black Communities Organizing for Communities.

As of right now, the Support St. Joe’s website says, “Outcry by community members and healthcare professionals forced Ascension to stop the cuts,” so the services are safe for now. However, the group is staying together to hold the hospital accountable and ensure it continues to treat all patients equally, regardless of income, race, or any other factor.

Original story can be found here.