Monthly Archives: April 2017

Above & Beyond

The following reports from patients and family members reaffirm our staff’s commitment
to putting our patients’ needs first. Please take a minute to say THANKS!

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On April 8, my husband brought me to the Emergency Department of UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown with stomach pain and vomiting. It was early evening and I expected a quick cure and a trip back home. We’ve lived in Kent County for 30 years and this was my first real visit to the hospital. I sure wasn’t expecting to spend the next six days in your facility.

However, I soon  discovered that my life would be saved by a friendly, funny surgeon I had never heard of, Dr. Paul Johnson. My intention with this letter is to commend, praise and
thank, and ask God’s blessing on the nurses, aides and techs who cared for me for those six days. There was not one moment when I needed help that help didn’t appear immediately. Morning, noon, night, I never felt alone. Every request was met with a smile and a loving touch. Man and woman alike, their kindness was unceasing, even at the end of a 12-hour shift. Names don’t stay in my mind but all of the faces will be staying in my mind and heart. I’11 never forget them. Even the food service and the housekeeping crews, smiling, caring, joking with me and making me feel cared for.

It wasn’t a vacation and I’m happy to be home. But I thank God for putting all of those angels in my path. You should be very proud of the staff caring for your patients. God bless them all.

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I love the ladies in the Lab at Shore Medical Pavilion in Queenstown. I am there frequently and they are always so comforting and so friendly!

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Viola (registration/staff secretary) at the Center for Integrative Medicine is fabulous.  Stephanie, the massage therapist is dynamic.  The Center offers great staff & expertise.

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As patient in the Center for Diabetes & Endocrinology, I never have to wait for the RN to take my vitals. I personally like how Shore Regional Health people treat me and work as a team.  I worked in three different hospitals, then retired and moved to the Shore.  The hospitals on the Shore treat their patients as a “patient” and not a number.  Thanks for this service.

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The receptionist was excellent! Her cheerful attitude was refreshing! Amanda was great! She was the nurse who helped me during the stress test. Dr. Gabriel Sardi was wonderful as well. Patty was part of the team near the end! What a Blessing everyone in nuclear testing at was! Thank you!

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It was helpful to have someone leading me all the way to the MRI at the Diagnostic and Imaging Center. No way I could have found the MRI without help. All the staff were very friendly, putting me at ease.

HR Connections – Open Enrollment Begins May 1

OPEN ENROLLMENT is an annual event to review, change, or add to your medical, vision, and dental plan, as well as set up contributions for a Health Savings Account HSA) or Flexible Spending Account (FSA). This is the ONLY time you may change your benefits during the year unless you experience a qualifying event. (See HRConnections for a complete listing of qualifying events.)

UM Shore Regional Health will be offering the same health, dental and vision plans as last year.

Does everyone need to re-enroll?  No, unless you are signing up for the first time, making changes or enrolling in Flexible Spending.  (You must enroll every year to have a Flexible Spending account)

If enrolling dependents for the first time, supporting documentation is required.

  • Elections remain in effect through June 30, 2018 unless you experience a qualified life event.
  • If you take no action, the plans you have now will carry over to July 1, 2017 EXCEPT your flexible spending account (if you have one).

 Need to reset your password for HR Connections? Call HRConnections at 855-486-6747.

Never tried Flexible Spending before? It is a simple way to put aside pre-tax dollars for qualified medical expenses.  Even if you only take one prescription medication regularly and see your doctor one time per year you can put aside the co-pay expenses and save the tax dollars. Consider opening an account this year.  See your enrollment guide or HRConnections for more details.

Need Assistance? Human Resources Business Partners will be available by appointment to assist with on-line support once we are in the enrollment period. Any questions, call:

Tanya Gross, ext. 5935
Kelley Mills, ext. 5007 or 410-778-7655
Melinda Simpkins, ext. 5904

Parking Advisory for UM Shore Medical Center at Easton Now Through May 4, 2017

As illustrated in the photo above, The Town of Easton will be using UM Shore Medical Center at Easton patient/visitor parking zones F and G to work on a storm drain lining project. The work has begun and will continue according to the information presented in the photo. Town of Easton personnel and UM SRH Security and Plant Operations staff  will be on site with the contractor during this activity.

While this work is in progress, all staff are strongly encouraged to use parking zones A, B, C and E (see map, below) so that there is ample parking available for our patient/visitors.

Any questions may be directed to  Michelle Kirk, director of Facilities Management, ext. 5464, or michelle.kirk@umm.edu.

Auxiliaries Recognized for Service, Support by UM Shore Regional Health Board

Back row: (left to right) John Dillon, chairman, UM Shore Regional Health Board of Directors, Art Cecil, president, Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton, Ken Kozel, president and CEO, UM Shore Regional Health. Front Row: (left to right) Sue Drumheller, Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary, Diane McCarthy, president, Dorchester General Auxiliary, Paddy Tobey, Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary

The University of Maryland Shore Regional Health Board of Directors recently recognized the Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary, the Dorchester General Auxiliary and the Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton for their outstanding work and dedication providing volunteer services and funds in support of the hospitals and inpatient and outpatient centers.

As National Volunteer Month, April is dedicated to honoring volunteers who donate their time to help organizations such as UM Shore Regional Health. The auxiliaries were each presented with a certificate of appreciation and a bouquet of flowers during the meeting.

“The auxiliary volunteers of Shore Regional Health have offered sensational support to our team and organization for many decades, “ said John Dillon, chairman, UM Shore Regional Health Board of Directors. “We can’t thank our auxiliaries enough for all of the effort, hours and financial support they provide to Shore Regional Health.”

During the past year, the auxiliaries have earned a combined $500,000 in proceeds through their special event sales, hospital gift shops and their auxiliary-managed thrift shops – the Nearly New Shop in Chestertown, the Robin Hood Shop in Cambridge and The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street in Easton. These proceeds  help pay for new  technology, facility upgrades and educational needs for UM Shore Regional Health and its team members.

At UM Shore Medical Centers at Chestertown, Dorchester and Easton, and various outpatient locations, auxiliary volunteers assist with services such as wheelchair and patient escorts, blood pressure screenings and front desk reception. Last year, members of the three auxiliaries provided a combined total of 60,000 hours in volunteer time.

“Volunteering with the Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary has allowed me to meet so many great community members while serving our local hospital,” says Sue Drumheller, who was one of the representatives for the Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary. “Volunteering is special to me, it really feeds my soul.”

Auxiliary volunteer positions are currently available at each hospital, a number of outpatient locations, at the hospital gift shops and all three thrift shops. For more information about volunteer opportunities call; Chestertown, 410-348-5114; Dorchester, 410-228-0091; Easton, 410-822-1000, ext. 5839.

TAKE HEART! Phase One Participation Rate Exceeds 95 Percent

Phase One of HEART wrapped up at the end of March and the numbers are in: Of 2,082 total employees (full time, part time and supplemental), 1,984 (95.29 percent) participated in HEART sessions scheduled between late December, 2016 and the end of March, 2017.

“This is a great accomplishment in a relatively short period of time,” comments Susan Coe. “We are grateful to managers across the system for getting their team members signed up and also to the HEART facilitators who gave of their time and talent to lead the sessions. And certainly, our service excellence coach/trainer, Christine Clarke, did a masterful job of keeping the program on track and providing guidance and support to the facilitators.”

HEART included a total of 106 three-hour sessions attended by as few as 10 and as many as 47 team members, depending on the day and location. “Each session was different, and I felt like I heard or learned something new in each one of them, whether it was from a facilitator or a team member,” says Clarke. “It was always interactive – a lot of sharing of experiences and ideas by staff at all levels and from every department – which kept it interesting and fun.”

Several facilitators conducted multiple sessions, according to Clarke. “Tommy Gray and Chanere Christian, both from UM Shore Medical Center at Dorchester, did the most,, but the group as a whole was extremely dedicated and flexible about filling in for each other when conflicts came up,” she reports.

Asked to describe the biggest “takeaways,” Clarke listed the following:

  • Teambuilding – HEART brought together staff from all levels and departments and team members really enjoyed putting faces to names and learning about the challenges faced in different roles.
  • Learning to listen – Team members over and over again cited that HEART helped them better understand the value of true listening and gave them the tools to improve their listening skills.
  • Realizing the difference between sympathy and empathy – – Participants reported this would improve their ability to empathize with patients, family members and each other.
  • Understanding that “everyone has a story”— Participants reported that the silent video early in the session showing the stories of many patients, family members and hospital staff had an enormous impact and readied them for the balance of the session.

Since HEART is now part of New Employee Orientation (NEO), team members who missed out during Phase One will be required to participate in HEART by attending an NEO.

“HEART is part of the fabric of UM Shore Regional Health,” says Coe. “It is required for everyone and along with our values – Respect, Integrity, Teamwork, Excellence and Service – HEART is built into job performance expectations and into the evaluation process for all team members.”

According to Jo Anne Thomson, director, Patient Experience, Phase II of HEART is now getting under way and includes the following initiatives:

  • HEART “hard-wiring” – On an “as needed” basis (determined by manager requests and patient/family feedback), additional HEART facilitation is being provided to individual staff and small groups.
  • “Answer with HEART” sessions will be provided to staff whose main communications are by telephone.
  • HEART sessions for Community Medical Group staff, volunteers and contractual services personnel are being scheduled for summer and fall.
  • HEART management support modules are being created to help managers enhance the culture of HEART in their departments, and a series of HEART “roundings” on inpatient units will begin in the next few months.

Free Skin Cancer Screenings to be Held Throughout Region

According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, skin cancer is the most common type of cancer, with more than 5.4 million cases of non-melanoma skin cancer treated annually in the United States. It is also the easiest to cure, if diagnosed and treated in its early stages.

To promote early detection of skin cancer, the Cancer Center at University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is working with various community partners to offer free skin cancer screenings throughout the region:

  • Saturday, May 6, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m., Kent County Health Department, 125 Lynchburg Street, Chestertown. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call Andrea Edwards, RN, at 410-778-7970.
  • Thursday, May 18, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m., Easton Dermatology Associates, 403 Marvel Court, Easton. Pre-registration is required for this location; to schedule an appointment, call the Cancer Center at University of Maryland Shore Regional Health at 410-820-6800.
  • Thursday, June 15, 5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m., Shore Dermatology, 100 Bramble Street, Suite 1, Cambridge. Pre-registration is required for this location; to schedule an appointment, call the Cancer Center at UM Shore Regional Health at 410-820-6800.

All screenings are open to the public. Underinsured and uninsured are encouraged to participate.

Additional information about services and annual screenings offered by the Cancer Program at UM Shore Regional Health can be found by visiting UMShoreRegional.org/cancer_program.

Jane Flowers Elected AORN National Board Treasurer

Jane Flowers

Jane Flowers, manager of Sterile Processing, was recently elected treasurer of the Board of Directors of the Association of PeriOperative Registered Nurses (AORN), according to Penny Pink, director, Surgical and Ambulatory Services.

AORN is a non-profit membership association representing the interests of more than 160,000 perioperative nurses. Flowers has served as a member of the AORN Board since March, 2015. As treasurer, she has oversight of a multi–million-dollar enterprise and in collaboration with the AORN’s chief financial officer and other staff, helps to guide the allocation of resources, ensuring that AORN’s strategic goals and initiatives are met.

“Being elected an officer on the board of a national professional nursing organization is quite an honor,” notes Pink. “Best wishes to Jane as she undertakes this new responsibility.”

A graduate of Macqueen Gibbs Willis School of Nursing, and Salisbury University, Flowers earned her MSN from Georgetown University. She has been a perioperative nurse and a member of AORN for 36 years. In addition to serving on numerous national committees of AORN during the past decade and as Board secretary in 2007-8, Flowers’  current professional activities for the organization include serving as Board liaison to various task forces and as a member of AORN’s eChapter, its Leadership Specialty Assembly and its Clinical Nurse Educator Special Assembly.

In other leadership roles, Flowers is a member of The Maryland Nurses Association/American Nurses Association, the International Association of Healthcare Central Supply and Materiel Managers, the Chesapeake College Surgical Tech Advisory Panel and the UM Shore Regional Health Nursing Excellence Awards Committee.