Monthly Archives: July 2016

Telemetry Unit Honored as Every Day Heroes



Physicians and nurses from the fourth floor Telemetry Unit at UM Shore Medical at Easton were honored recently as “Everyday Heroes” by UM Memorial Hospital Foundation. Shown are, from left: Alisha Cunha, RN, Stacey Cadden, RN, Dr. Ramesh Kolli, Ed Luschinski, Kathie Ficher, RN, Amanda Coate, RN and F. Graham Lee, Vice President for Philanthropy.

Nurses and physicians on the fourth floor Telemetry unit at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton were recently honored as Everyday Heroes by a grateful patient and his family. The unit was nominated by Jean and James Mason for the exceptional care and helpfulness provided by clinicians on the unit during James’ hospitalization at the end of April.

“Our gift is in appreciation of the care providers while we were in Shore Medical Center at Easton,” the Masons wrote in a letter sent with their gift to UM Memorial Hospital Foundation. “All of these staff members were so good to us during our visit.”

The Everyday Hero program provides patients, visitors and staff members with the opportunity to recognize and thank any member or team at UM Shore Regional Health, who made a positive difference in a visit or stay, by making a financial contribution of any size to UM Memorial Hospital Foundation or UM Chester River Health Foundation. Funds received through the Everyday Hero program are used for equipment, capital improvements and staff education in the departments in which the employees or team work.

Local Road to Recovery Volunteer Receives Recognition


Elmer Parkerson, Road to Recovery Volunteer Coordinator

Elmer Parkerson, Road to Recovery Volunteer Coordinator

Local Road to Recovery Volunteer Coordinator, Elmer Parkerson, was recently named Top Volunteer Coordinator for Maryland by the American Cancer Society.

The American Cancer Society’s Road to Recovery Program is among the available programs at the Cancer Center at University of Maryland Shore Regional Health. Road to Recovery works with the Cancer Program to provide free transportation to patients who face challenges getting to their cancer treatments at the Cancer Center, which is located at 509 Idlewild Avenue in Easton. Volunteer drivers in Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot Counties give of their time, using their own cars and gas, to ensure that patients maintain their treatment schedules.

As volunteer coordinator, Parkerson, a retired Maryland State Police Officer and businessman, facilitates the American Cancer Society’s required orientation for new drivers, maintains records of insurance coverage and safe driving records, and matches drivers to patients’ appointment schedules. He also serves as a volunteer driver for patients.

“Cancer Center team members depend on the kindness and dedication that Elmer and our local Road to Recovery drivers demonstrate in helping our patients to access quality cancer care,” comments Brian Leutner, director of Oncology Services, UM Shore Regional Health. “Elmer is an invaluable resource to the patients we serve who, without this program, would be unable to maintain necessary – and often life-saving – radiation and chemotherapy schedules.”

To meet the transportation needs of more patients, the Road to Recovery Program is seeking new volunteers throughout the five-county region served by UM Shore Regional Health. Information about the Program and the American Cancer Society’s recruitment and orientation process can be obtained by calling the Cancer Center at 410-820-6800. To learn more about additional support services offered by the Cancer Program at UM Shore Regional Health, visit

Claws for a Cause Raises $41,041 to Benefit UM Shore Emergency Center at Queenstown



Claws for a Cause committee members and other volunteers line up in front of Fisherman’s Crab Deck before the crab feast, (from left) Sheldon Turner, Theresa Bosworth, Lisa Lisle, Julie McMahan-Thomas, Holly Rhodes, co-chair Ginny Biondi, Mary Alice Vanhoy, Kathy Clark, and Mark Freestate. Not present for the photo were Bobbie Cusimano, Vicki Wood-Dean and co-chair Cassie Guy.

The Claws for a Cause crab feast, held at the Fisherman’s Crab Deck in Grasonville on July 14, raised $41,041 to benefit the University of Maryland Shore Emergency Center at Queenstown. The proceeds will go towards purchasing state of the art telemedicine equipment that will enable the emergency center to use telecommunication and information technologies to provide clinical health care from remote sites.

“We are very appreciative of everyone coming out and doing their part in supporting our community emergency center in Queenstown,” says Cassie Guy, co-chair of the Claws for a Cause committee. “This equipment will help eliminate distance barriers on the Eastern Shore and enhance treatment capabilities for mental health, vascular and pediatric patients.”

“We are on pace to see 15,500 patients this year,” says Mary Alice Vanhoy, manager, UM Shore Emergency Center at Queenstown. “With assistance from the community, our team works to provide the highest quality care and resources to our patients and their families. Telemedicine will provide a needed resource at our emergency center and we are very excited about this new technology as we continue to strive for safe practice and safe care.”

Presented by UM Memorial Hospital Foundation, Claws for a Cause included all-you-can-eat steamed crabs as well as a buffet of fried chicken, pork barbeque and assorted sides. Along with crabs and buffet, guests participated in two raffles.  One raffle theme was a backyard BBQ raffle, which included a gas grill, custom corn hole boards, and a Yeti ‘Roadie’ cooler; the other was an outdoor living raffle including several golf packages, walking and boating tours of Annapolis, 100 targets for four people at The Point at Pintail, and a brunch at Annie’s.

“On behalf of Memorial Hospital Foundation, I want to thank the hard-working committee and volunteers who did a great job making this event so successful,” says F. Graham Lee, vice president for philanthropy. “We sold more than 190 tickets for the crab feast, which shows how much the community supports Shore Emergency Center at Queenstown and the excellent care provided by the center staff. We are excited to start planning another Claws for a Cause next year and we hope to see everyone there.”

SLAM Committee Honored at Management Forum


Shown are Ken Kozel, president and CEO, and SLAM Committee members Teresa Blem, Steve Pittman, Chris DiFatta and Pam Pardun.

Shown are Ken Kozel, president and CEO, and SLAM Committee members Teresa Blem, Steve Pittman, Chris DiFatta and Pam Pardun.

The Safe Lifting and Moving (SLAM) Committee was honored at Management Forum on Thursday, July 28, 2016 for its success in reducing injuries related to lifting and moving. During a presentation to the Forum, UM Shore Regional Health President and CEO Ken Kozel noted that SLAM has reduced staff injuries significantly in three years: from 54 in FY14 to 30 in FY15 and just 26 for FY 16.

The Committee also established a quarterly “SLAM Honor Roll” for recognize and congratulate those units whose teams are injury free each quarter. In the last quarter, 13 team made the SLAM Honor Roll.

“The Slam Committee’s initiatives have included video education, games and all-staff events that have not only been fun but have resulted in sustained reduction in staff injuries,  Kozel stated.  “They deserve our recognition for their creativity, good clinical work and dedication to our team members.”

SLAM Committee members are Teresa Blem and Mandy Bounds, co-chairs, Nancy Bedell, Gary Bigelow, Chris DiFatta, Pam Pardun, Hope Perkins, Steve Pittman, Stephanie Pogwist, Sandy Prochaska, Amy Stafford and Leigh Tomey.

Speaking on behalf of the Slam Committee, Teresa Blem, director of rehabilitation, indicated that the SLAM initiative will now focus on safe lifting of materials and equipment as well as patients, and thanked her fellow Committee members for their excellent team work and progress achieved in increasing safety for staff and patients.

Portable Field Hospital Demonstration at UM SMC at Easton



Michael Boldosser, emergency preparedness manager for UM Shore Regional Health, outside of the supply trailer.

Last Thursday, UM Shore Medical Center at Easton hosted a demonstration of a portable field hospital that is available to any hospital on the Eastern Shore.  This 20-bed portable field hospital was purchased in 2012 by the Region IV Healthcare Coalition, Delmarva Regional Healthcare Mutual Aid Group (DRGHMAG). DRGHMAG consists of representatives from every hospital, health department and Emergency Management Agency on the Eastern Shore. The coalition decided to take it on the road to demonstrate some of its capabilities to the staff of UM Shore Regional Health.

In approximately 30 minutes, the tent portion of the hospital is ready for use. The configuration of the tents is very flexible, given that the partitions are all on Velcro. Each patient area provides 50 square feet, but if need be, one panel can be removed to provide the 100 square feet of space required for an ICU patient. The 17.5kw generator powers two large heat pumps that can cool the tents to 60 degrees or heat them as warm as desired. The unit also has the capability to provide a negative pressure room. Supplies for the hospital are stored in the trailer, which contains enough supplies to see 300 patients in 72 hours.  The trailer also contains showers, toilets, an electric hot water heater, refrigerator and microwave that can all go into the tent.


Portable field hospital set up in the staff parking lot at UM SMC at Easton.

“This portable field hospital is a great resource for Eastern Shore hospitals during emergency situations,” says Michael Boldosser, emergency preparedness manager for UM Shore Regional Health. “During to the demonstration here, we had 18 student nurses, members of senior leadership and many others tour the unit, and they were quite impressed with its capabilities.”


Inside portable field hospital tent where patients rooms would be.

New Social Media Posts This Week…..Please Like and Share


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New Social Media Posts This Week…..Please Like and Share

  • UM Shore Regional Health would like to thank Congressman Chris Van Hollen for visiting UM Shore Medical Center at Easton
  • ChoiceOne Urgent Care coming to Easton this September!
  • Telemetry Unit Honored as Every Day Heroes
  • Claws for a Cause Raises $41,041 to Benefit UM Shore Medical Center at Queenstown

Upcoming Events: July and August 2016


Alzheimer’s Support

Alzheimer’s/Dementia Caregivers Support Group – Thursday, 8/18, 6-7:30pm. UM Shore Nursing & Rehab Center at Chestertown. Led by Stephanie Golebieski, assistant director of nursing. Contact: 410-778-4550.

Find information about skilled nursing, inpatient rehab and respite care in Chestertown online at

Auxiliary Events

“Christmas in August” Sale – During the entire month of August, take 30% off everything at the Hospitality Shop at UM Shore Medical Center at Dorchester, operated by the Dorchester General Hospital Auxiliary for the benefit of hospital programs, services, equipment and patient care. *Certain merchandise is excluded from the sale including jewelry, books, candy/food, cards, magazines and coloring/puzzle books. 

Bazaar Semi-Annual Shoe Clearance Sale – Now through Thursday, 8/4, all previously discounted shoes (star punched) will be 75% off. The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street, in Easton, is operated by the Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton for the benefit of programs, services, equipment and patient care at UM SMC at Easton. Shop hours are Monday-Saturday from 10am-4pm.

$6.00 Sale- Friday, 7/29, 7am-4pm, UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown, Conference Center. More than 1,000 items at only $6.00!  Sponsored by the Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary. All sales conducted by the Auxiliary are for the benefit of programs, services, equipment and patient care at UM SMC at Chestertown. Payroll deduction, cash and credit accepted.

Uniform Sale – Monday, 8/1 and Tuesday, 8/2, 7am-4pm, UM Shore Medical Center at Easton, HEC. Sponsored by the Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton for the benefit of programs, services, equipment and patient care at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton.

Bazaar Bag Sale – Friday, 8/5 and Saturday, 8/6, Bazaar at 121 Federal Street, Easton. Customers can fill a bag with shop merchandise for either $6 or $10. Bags will be provided by the Bazaar and can be filled with previously discounted clothing (punched tickets). Certain merchandise exclusions do apply; please see a shop volunteer for details.  Operated by the Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton, which raises funds for University of Maryland Shore Medical Center at Easton, The Bazaar is open Monday through Saturday from 10am to 4pm.  For more information about The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street or volunteer opportunities call 410-822-2031. All sales conducted by the Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton are for the benefit of the hospital’s equipment, programs, services and patient care.

Breast Cancer Support

Transition to Wellness – Free workshops for breast cancer survivors and patients who are ending treatment.

Survivors Offering Support (SOS) – Free program pairing women who have breast cancer with mentors who are breast cancer survivors. If you need support or would like to become a mentor, call 410-822-1000, ext. 5866.

Breast Cancer Support Group – Tuesday, 8/23, 6-7:30pm, Cancer Center, Easton. Contact: 410-822-1000, ext. 5387.

Find more information about The Breast Center’s programs and services at

Cancer Support

Cancer Support Group/Easton – Thursday, 8/4 and 8/18, Cancer Center, Easton. Information and support for patients at any stage – diagnosis, treatment, recovery and survivorship. Contact: 443-254-5940

US TOO Prostate Cancer Support Group – Tuesday, 8/9, 6:30pm, Cancer Center, Easton. Information and support for patients at any stage – diagnosis, treatment, recovery and survivorship. Contact: 443-994-5792.

Look Good … Feel Better – Monday, 8/15, 10am-12pm, Cancer Center, Easton. Free ACS program for women with cancer includes hair, skin and make-up tips, samples and a visit to the wig room. Contact: 410-822-1000, ext. 5355.

Find more information about cancer treatment and support services online at

Childbirth & New Parent Education

Breastfeeding Support Group – Tuesday, 8/2 and 8/16, 10-11:30am, UM SMC at Easton, 5th floor meeting room. Led by lactation consultants for new and expectant mothers. 8/2 meeting will celebrate World Breastfeeding Week (August 1-7). Contact: 410-822-1000 or 410-228-5511, ext. 5700.

Labor & Delivery Class – Saturday, 8/6, 9am-3:30pm, UM SMC at Easton, Health Education Center. Overview of maternal reproductive health; signs, symptoms and stages of labor, including pain management; techniques for a successful birth experience; cesarean delivery; and recovery after the birth. Free; register by phone, 410-822-1000 or 410-228-5511, ext. 5200.

New Mom, New Baby: Safety & CPR –Saturday, 8/20, 9am-1:30pm, UM SMC at Easton, Health Education Center. Baby topics (feeding, taking the baby’s temperature, circumcision and core care); mother topics (postpartum care, handling   stress, returning to work and birth control); and, safety topics (childproofing, immunizations, car seats, infant security, poison prevention and when to call the doctor). Free; register by phone, 410-822-1000 or 410-228-5511, ext. 5200.

Big Brother, Big Sister: Sibling Preparation – Saturday, 8/27, 9:30-11am, UM SMC at Easton, Health Education Center. Designed for children ages 3-8, includes a tour of the Birthing Center and story time or video.  Register by phone, 410-822-1000 or 410-228-5511, ext. 5200.

Find more information about Birthing Center programs and services at

Diabetes Education and Support

Diabetes Self- Management Class/Easton  –  Two sessions: Tuesday, 8/2, 8/9 and 8/16, 9am-12pm; and Wednesday, 8/3, 8/10, 8/17, 1:30-4:30pm. UM SMC at Easton, UM Diabetes & Endocrinology Center. Medical information and strategies enabling patients to manage their diabetes for optimal wellness. Referral and advance registrations required. Contact: 410-822-1000, ext. 5195.

Diabetes Self-Management Class/Chestertown – Tuesday, 8/2, 8/9, 8/16, 4:30pm-7:30pm, UM SMC at Chestertown Education Center. Medical information and strategies enabling patients to manage their diabetes for optimal wellness. Referral and advance registration required. Contact: 410-822-1000, ext. 5195.

Diabetes Support Group/Denton – Wednesday, 8/3, 5:30pm, St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, Denton. Led by Doris Allen, lead diabetes educator. Contact: 410-479-2161.

Diabetes Support Group/Easton — Monday, 8/15 5:30pm, Talbot County Community Center Easton. Led by Karen Hollis, diabetes educator. Contact: 410-822-1000, ext. 5195

Diabetes Support Group/ Dorchester – Wednesday, 8/24, 5:30, Dorchester County YMCA. Contact 410-822-1000, ext. 5195.

Diabetes Support Group/Chestertown– Tuesday 8/30, 6:30pm, UM Shore Regional Health Chestertown. Led by Chrissy Nelson, diabetes educator. Contact 410-778-3300 ext. 2175

Find more information about diabetes treatment and support services at

Fall Risk Reduction

Stepping On Workshop – Thursday, 7/7-8/17, 9-11am, Christ Episcopal Church, St. Michaels. Free, six-week fall risk reduction program. Contact: 410-221-0029 or email

Integrative Medicine

Acupuncture, Massage, Psychotherapy and Reiki – By appointment, Mon-Fri, except holidays. Center for Integrative Medicine, Suite 300, 522 Cynwood Drive, Easton. For information about services, providers and scheduling, visit or call 410-770-9400.

Pain Management

Chronic Pain Self-Management Program – Wednesday, 7/13-8/17, 5:30-8pm, Center for Integrative Medicine. Free, six-week program teaching techniques for successful pain management. Contact: 410-770-9400.

Psychosocial Support

Bridge Clinic Support Group – Tuesday, 8/2, 8/9, 8/16, 8/23 & 8/30, 6-7:30pm, UM SMC at Dorchester. Free, confidential support group meeting for individuals who have been hospitalized for behavioral health reasons and could benefit from assistance with issues after discharge. Varied topics based on participants’ needs. Each participant may bring one family member. Contact: 410-228-5511, ext. 2140.

International Overdose Awareness Day Event – Wednesday, 8/31, 6-8pm, St. Mark’s Methodist Church, 100 Peach Blossom Road, Easton. Join a host of community organizations including Mariah’s Mission Fund, Talbot Partnership and Recovery for Shore at this free event designed to educate community members about the increasing incidence of drug overdose and death in our region; mental health and substance abuse disorders; and prevention, support and treatment resources available in our community. For information and event details,  visit or call 410-819-8067.

Safe Sitter

Safe Sitter® Classes/Easton and Chestertown – Monday, 8/1, 9am-4:30pm, UM SMC at Easton. Nick Rajacich Education Center; and Tuesday, 8/23, 9am-4:30pm, UM SMC at Chestertown Education Center. Pediatric nurses teach youth ages 11-13 the basics of babysitting, including first aid and more. Cost: $40 (scholarships available). Limited seating, advance registration required. Contact: Easton, 410-822-1000, ext. 5231; Chestertown, 410-778-7668, ext. 2175.

Save the Date

Recovery Happens! A Celebration – Saturday, 9/17, 5pm, Christ Church, 111 S. Harrison Street. September is National Recovery Month – Mark your calendar for a community celebration open to all, sponsored by Recovery for Shore. “Alive at Five” service, followed by dinner festivities. Interested in getting involved? Email


Free Blood Pressure Screenings/Easton & Cambridge – Easton: every Monday & Tuesday, 9am-12pm, Diagnostic & Imaging Center. Cambridge: every Tuesday & Friday, 11am-1pm, UM SMC at Dorchester, Main Lobby. (Excluding holidays.)


Creating a Culture of Family Philanthropy – Saturday, 8/13, 9:30-11:30am, Talbot Country Club. Presenters: Elizabeth Spurry, president, Tred Avon Family Wealth; and Martin Johnson, retired financial advisor.  Seminar will help parents, grandparents and other family members teach children how to embrace responsibility for the needs of their community. Free, but seating is limited. Register in advance by contacting Janet Andrews, 410-822-1000 ext. 5792,

Stroke Support

Mid-Shore Stroke Support Group – Thursday, 8/4, 12-2pm, Presbyterian Church, Easton. Presenters: Richie Bobitka, EMS paramedic. Topic: “Helping EMS, Help you”. Stroke survivors and family/caregivers welcome. Bring bagged lunch. Contact: 410-310-9280,

Queenstown Stroke Support Group – Tuesday, 8/23, 12pm-2pm, UM Shore Pavilion at Queenstown. Presenter: Richie Bobitka, EMS paramedic. Topic: “Helping EMS, Help you”. Stroke survivors and family/caregivers welcome. Bring bagged lunch. Contact: 410-822-1000, ext. 5068,


UM SRH Board Approves Strategic Service Delivery Plan


The University of Maryland Shore Regional Health Board of Directors recently approved the Strategic Service Delivery Plan – the culmination of an 18 month study of its key clinical service lines and the regional health care needs, resources and access to services for the people of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties. This study involved extensive input from physicians, staff and team members, local and UMMS management, elected officials, health officers and other community partners-as well as the voice of the community through regional listening sessions and surveys.

The Service Delivery Plan reflects future planning needs identified in five strategic clinical service lines and further incorporates regional transportation recommendations. The plan becomes part of the UM Shore Regional Health Strategic Plan for the coming five years, through 2021. The five clinical service line councils are: Primary Care (including obstetrics/gynecology and pediatrics); Medical Specialties; Surgical Specialties; Oncology; and Behavioral Health. Some common themes identified by these service line councils include: transportation challenges, particularly for medical needs; physician shortages; telemedicine expansion needs; improved communications technology to support chronic disease management, care coordination and access to specialties; and expanded community outreach, education, screenings and support groups.

A key element of the plan is the updating of a docketed Certificate of Need (CON) to replace the existing hospital at Easton with a new facility on Route 50 near the Talbot County Community Center which UM Shore Regional Health purchased from Talbot County in 2015. The CON will be updated in September and could take a year or more for the State’s full review. The replacement hospital is designed to address costly, aged infrastructure, improved access by EMS and the public, private room capacity and state of the art future patient care unit design. Hospitals and inpatient beds in Chestertown and Cambridge are not affected by this CON. The proposed new hospital is a replacement for Easton only and does not incorporate beds from any other UM Shore Regional Health location.

UM Shore Regional Health commitments affirmed in the Strategic Service Delivery Plan include:

  • Commitment to maintain quality health care services and jobs in Chestertown and Kent County, focused upon state of the art medical care, emergency care, access to physicians and specialists and robust outpatient services. Hospital inpatient services will be maintained until at least 2022, with continued feasibility of inpatient beds evaluated in light of the State of Maryland’s 2016-2017 study of rural health care.
  • Commitment to maintain quality health care services and jobs in Cambridge and Dorchester County, focused upon state of the art medical care, emergency care, access to physicians and specialists, and robust outpatient services. The aged current facility must be addressed and a state of the art emergency department must be designed to meet future health care needs in the County. Future planning will be done in partnership with Dorchester’s citizens and in the context of the State’s study of rural health care.

UM Shore Regional Health is committed to quality, accessible and sustainable health care for our communities in the five-county region.

June/July Team Forums Summary


The June-July 2016 Team Forums conducted by Ken Kozel, UM Shore Regional Health president and CEO, in Cambridge, Chestertown and Easton were very well attended. Ken gave a detailed presentation that covered several topics, and there was ample time for team members to raise concerns and ask questions.


Ken welcomed those in attendance and stated that the intent of the Team Forums is to share information in a direct and personal way that team members can respond to, and also to give them the opportunity ask questions, share concerns and offer suggestions. The subject matter of this round of Forums was to center on:

  • Self – the role of each individual team member in the overall organization;
  • Department – the contribution of teamwork within each individual department of UM SRH;
  • UM SRH – provide progress updates since our last forum;
  • UMMS – the value of our affiliation; and,
  • Changes in the health care industry as they pertain to UM SRH.


Patient Experience and Patient Testimonials — Ken shared a number of department-specific comments submitted by patients about the caring, professional and effective service they received from Shore Regional Health team members. He thanked staff for the excellent “reviews” they earn from patients and families, and for their dedication to helping UM SRH achieve its vision of being the region’s leader in patient-centered care.

He also talked briefly about initiatives to improve the patient experience across all UM SRH facilities; for example, Leadership Rounding, which is designed to identify the challenges and barriers faced by staff in various departments as well as to get ideas on how to overcome those challenges. He also mentioned Susan Coe’s new role as “chief experience officer” leading the patient experience improvement initiatives.

Looking Inward — Role of Staff in Making UM SRH a Better Organization — Ken asked team members to think about “why we work here, beyond the paycheck.” The questions he posed included:

  • What can you do and what do you need from leadership to perform your job better and/or more efficiently?
  • Can you think of your job and the health care arena as a calling about which you are passionate?

He explained that it is his role to develop passion throughout the organization, and that the UM SRH mission, vision and values comprise the foundation for all team members to work together with shared purpose and direction. He also stated that his obligation as CEO is to ensure:

  • fair pay and benefits;
  • a safe work environment;
  • access to the tools needed for all team members to do their jobs well;
  • effective leaders; and,
  • ongoing communication about progress and initiatives to fulfill our mission and vision so that all team members are connected to UM SRH and UMMS.

He asked everyone present to think not only about their own reasons for being part of UM Shore Regional Health, but about their co-workers and the value of working together as a team. This includes:

  • supporting each other, holding ourselves and each other accountable to make sure we stay patient-focused;
  • staying informed and being ambassadors for our patients and UM SRH; and,
  • helping identify ways the system can improve.

“Your role is to always do your best and tell us how we can improve – help us be the best we can be,” he stated.

UM SRH Current Progress — Ken listed several examples of progress throughout UM Shore Regional Health:

  • the opening of the second phase of the Cadmus project (UM Shore Medical Pavilion at Easton) in May;
  • the opening of the newly renovated Diagnostic and Imaging Center and Clark Comprehensive Breast Center in June;
  • the opening of the ChoiceOne/UM Shore Urgent Care in Denton in May and the anticipated opening of the new ChoiceOne/UM SRH Urgent Care Center in Easton in September;
  • the opening of UM Shore Medical Pavilion at Chestertown in July;
  • the recruitment and on-boarding of obstetricians and certified nurse midwives to UM Shore Regional Health/Community Medical Group;
  • the formation of a partnership between UM SRH and The Orthopedic Center;
  • planning for the inauguration of surgical PCI stent procedures (anticipated in early 2017) requiring the construction of a second lab and the recruitment of two interventional cardiologists to serve the region;
  • continued efforts to recruit new medical providers in specialties where physician shortages cause delays in treatment; and
  • the development and Board approval of a formal, system-wide Service Delivery Plan.

Service Delivery Plan – The Board of UM SRH has approved the Service Delivery Plan that was created through the Strategic Planning process inaugurated in 2013. The plan outlines what types of care will be delivered in which locations and addresses diverse population health needs throughout the five county region.

New Hospital Update — Ken indicated that as part of the UM SRH Service Delivery Plan, the UM SRH Board has approved the request to update the existing Certificate of Need Application to replace the current UM Shore Medical Center at Easton.  This would not be a regional medical center, but a replacement hospital, and the process is likely to take up to six years from the date the updated CON application is submitted to the State of Maryland to the opening of the new hospital. UM SRH now owns the property for the project — 200 acres near the Easton airport.

Rural Health Care Study — The Maryland State Legislature has launched this process and appointed the study committee. Their report should be ready in October, 2017 and will address a number of issues and challenges specific to hospitals in rural areas; for example, the difficulty of recruiting and retaining physicians and lack of widely available medical transportation.

Advantages of Being Part of UMMS – Ken noted that while there are many challenges facing rural health care, UM SRH has the advantage of being part of University of Maryland Medical System — “more than 25,000 employees strong and providing some of the best care in the world” — which provides access to a full continuum of care and helps provide much greater strength and efficiency in terms of resources; for example, risk management, which now takes place at the corporate level; and telemedicine, which will soon be available in UM SRH pediatric and behavioral health units as well as in critical care.

Budget and Employee Compensation – Ken noted that Shore Regional Health’s FY16 profit margin is anticipated to be between 3 and 4 percent. In term of employee raises, the projection is for 2 percent raises for everyone; there also are market adjustments which will continue to be made in FY17 for positions in several departments.


Can something be done about the fact that patients with injuries from motor vehicle accidents are required to pay out of pocket for treatment (because auto insurance is not accepted by UM SRH)? Ken and team members JoAnne Hahey, Susan Coe and Jo Anne Thomson agreed to investigate this problem and find a resolution.

The new prescription benefit information is unclear — is it necessary to change pharmacies if you are not presently with Caremark/CVS? Ken and Susan Coe asked Melinda Simpkins to look into this issue and provide a clearer explanation of the prescription benefit change to all team members.

When is the transition to Epic expected to take place? The transition from Meditech to Epic will be accomplished in all areas of UM SRH by fall, 2017.

To whom should broken equipment, including beds, be reported? Broken equipment is a significant safety hazard that should be reported immediately to the supervisor of the unit and/or to upper management.

Why has there been so much downtime for HR Connections via Lawson? UM SRH is a client of Lawson and unfortunately, downtimes and repair speed are not within Shore Regional Health’s control.

Can something be done to address patient complaints about the long walk for patients at Shore Medical Pavilion at Easton, especially the phase two building? Patient Experience plans to address access, patient flow, safety and convenience. The team is prioritizing the tasks involved and will begin review of improvement opportunities as soon as prioritization is complete.

What about raises for employees who have reached the ceiling for their positions – can something be done for them? In 2014 and 2015, UM SRH granted a 2 percent increase to every team member — and will do the same in 2016. In 2015 and 2016, we also implemented market adjustments for several job groups. For those team members who received a market adjustment, their 2 percent increase was taken into consideration. The result was that every regular full time and part time team member received at least a 2 percent increase. (Relief and/or Per Diem roles are not part of this increase plan and are handled differently.)

Why does it seem that longstanding team members’ experience is not valued as much as the training of new hires just coming out of nursing school – can this be addressed? We value experience highly. We also recognize that competitive pressures in the marketplace can create less difference (sometimes called compression) in differentiation of levels of experience. SRH follows UMMS’ pay philosophy, which is to target roles to the 50th percentile of the external market. We are committed to paying competitively and fairly. This is an ongoing process and requires regular review and vigilance. We recently announced our market increase plan for Fiscal Year 2017.  From Fiscal Year 2015 through Fiscal Year 2017 UM SRH has committed and will deliver approximately $10.6 million in improving salaries for our team members and will continue to address salaries in the future.

What is going to happen to UM Shore Medical Center at Dorchester? The future of rural hospitals, including UM SMC at Dorchester, depends in part on the outcomes and recommendations of the rural health care study recently undertaken by the State of Maryland. It also depends on our continued ability to provide safe, high quality care in a facility that is rapidly aging. We are committed to assess the impact of the state study, along with our own capabilities regularly, and to produce the best plan which ensure Cambridge and its surrounding communities receive the highest quality of care for all in need.

What is going to happen to UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown? The State of Maryland’s Rural Health Care Study (see answer to the question above) describes the status of UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown, and UM SRH is committed to keeping acute care in Chestertown until 2022, by which time a clearer picture should have emerged (from the State of Maryland Rural Health Care study) of how inpatient care should be delivered in a rural setting.

Phase III of the Cadmus project — what services will be located there? That determination is now in process; possibilities include the Diabetes Center and the Rehab Center at Easton. The anticipated opening of Phase III would be 18 months from now.

How will corporate profits be used — will they be dedicated to improving the patient experience? Yes, investing in improving the patient experience is most important because it helps us achieve our vision of being the region’s leader in patient-centered health care. When we work towards achieving our vision, our community receives the best possible care we can give.

A lot of employees have good ideas — how can those ideas be shared with leaders who can consider ways to implement them? Managers and other leaders are expected to be receptive to staff input and ideas. As chief experience officer, Susan Coe is a resource in that regard; also, the Staff Advisory Council can share perspectives.

Local Breast Surgeon Joins Clark Center Team


Susan T. Forlifer, MD

Susan T. Forlifer, MD

The Clark Comprehensive Breast Center at University of Maryland Shore Regional Health recently welcomed Susan T. Forlifer, MD, local breast surgeon, to its team.

Dr. Forlifer grew up in Maryland, sailing on the Chesapeake Bay.  She attended Brown University and became a Physician’s Assistant working in Surgical Oncology at Emory University of Atlanta.  Dr. Forlifer then attended medical school at Emory, returning to Maryland to complete her residency at University of Maryland Medical Center.  She began her career in Easton in 1991 and specialized in general and vascular surgery for 10 years before founding the Shore Regional Breast Center – now the Clark Comprehensive Breast Center – and opening a practice specializing in breast health. She operated that practice, Comprehensive Breast Health, for 15 years prior to joining the Clark Comprehensive Breast Center at UM Shore Regional Health in early July. She has been a member of the American Society of Breast Surgeons since 1997 and on the Board of Directors for Susan G. Komen® Maryland for five years.

“The Clark Comprehensive Breast Center and our organization as a whole could not be more thrilled to welcome Dr. Forlifer, a provider of exceptional breast care in this community for more than two decades,” remarks Brian Leutner, director of Oncology Services, UM Shore Regional Health. “Dr. Forlifer is a pillar in the medical community and is well respected by her colleagues and the countless number of breast cancer patients whose lives she’s touched over the years.”

Dr. Forlifer joins Roberta J. Lilly, MD, MPH, FACS, and the entire breast health team in offering comprehensive services for benign and malignant breast disease including screening and diagnostic digital mammography with Tomosynthesis – also known as 3D mammography; breast ultrasound and MRI; surgical care for all benign and malignant diseases of the breast; the Wellness for Women screening mammography program; the Survivors Offering Support Program; and a Women’s Health Boutique for post-mastectomy garments, prosthetics and swim wear.

“Dr. Lilly has expanded the original concept and grown the Breast Center into a dynamic multi-disciplinary program, with national accreditation and honors,” comments Dr. Forlifer. “I am thrilled to return to work at the Center with her.”

To learn more about available breast health services at the Clark Comprehensive Breast Center – now at 10 Martin Court in Easton – or to schedule an appointment, call 410-820-9400.

University of Maryland Community Medical Group Welcomes New Providers


Carolyn Helmly, MD

Carolyn Helmly, MD, FACP

University of Maryland Community Medical Group (UM CMG) recently announced the addition of Easton-based internist Carolyn Helmly, MD, FACP. A graduate of the Saint Louis University Medical School, Dr. Helmly practices general internal medicine with a special interest in preventative care, tailoring health care recommendations based on individual needs. She is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians.  Patients may make an appointment to see Dr. Helmly at her new office at UM Shore Medical Pavilion at Easton – 500 Cadmus Lane, Suite 211 – by calling 410-820-4880.

Maria Maguire, MD, MPP, FAAP

Another addition, Easton-based pediatrician Maria Maguire, MD, MPP, FAAP, joined UM CMG- Pediatrics. Dr. Maguire is a graduate of Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and completed her residency training in pediatrics at the Monroe Carell Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. A Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, her clinical interests include general pediatrics, health policy and advocacy, management of allergic diseases (such as asthma, eczema and food allergies) and female adolescent health issues.  Joining Dr. Richard Fritz, Dr. Mark Langfitt, Marilyn Gall, CFNP, and Ellen Spurry Christ, CPNP, Dr. Maguire is seeing patients at UM Shore Medical Pavilion at Easton in Suite 210. Patients may make an appointment with Dr. Maguire by calling 410-822-8550.

“We are extremely excited to have Dr. Helmly and Dr. Maguire join University of Maryland Community Medical Group,” comments Michele Wilson, vice president of operations for UM CMG. “Both physicians’ knowledge and expertise will be a tremendous asset to our patients – of all ages – on the Eastern Shore.”

University of Maryland Community Medical Group (UM CMG) is a multi-hospital, multi-specialty, community-based physician-led group, and part of the University of Maryland Medical System.  With more than 300 primary care physicians, specialists, and advanced practice clinicians in more than 30 locations across the state, UM CMG offers patients a vast network of highly experienced providers, delivering care right in their neighborhood. For more information, visit UM CMG consists of community-based provider practices affiliated with UM Baltimore Washington Medical Center, UM Charles Regional Medical Center, University of Maryland Medical Center Midtown Campus and UM Shore Regional Health.  A list of UM CMG providers is available at