The following reports from patients and family members reaffirm our staff’s commitment to teamwork and putting our patients’ needs first.
Please take a minute to say THANKS!
Having just finished radiation treatments at your facility, I felt it incumbent on me to share my experience at the Requard Radiation Oncology Center.
In the 45 years I have been working, I have held many positions and encountered all walks of life. I am a retired air traffic controller from Andrews AFB, I was also in FAA management and was the lead instructor for Air Traffic Control at Andrews. In my career field we were held to sometimes impossible standards.
The reason for this letter is that I believe that credit should be given where credit is due. Your staff, including John Daly, Victoria, Lauren, Ashley, Kathleen, Christa and Candice, are an amazing group. Every single one of them did an outstanding job throughout the 44 times I came there. They are a professional, competent, courteous and friendly group. I was always greeted with a smile and my care and comfort were always their concern, And they all get along!! When I left, I got handshakes and hugs from all of them.
By far, your staff exceeded my expectations…. From my perspective, this group deserves special recognition.
I want to thank Shore Home Care’s Charlie Moore for helping me get rid of my back pain and for the helpful exercises to strengthen my muscles. When I was released from Rehab I was still in a lot of pain and on strong pain medicine. Within a week of working with Charlie, I had decreased my pain medicine until I was taking none and I felt so much better!
Also, I thank him for his encouragement along the way. I thank God for sending Charlie to me because he knew how to realign my pelvis, which really relieved the pain — no one else had figured that out.
The Emergency Department at Shore Medical Center at Dorchester took me right away due to my heart problem. I knew many of the nurses – so they explained the tests needed and then the results, consulted Cardiology & transferred me to Easton. Even when the ER got busy – I was not neglected. I have always been impressed with the personnel at Dorchester.
I had a very nice stay in acute care at Shore Medical Center at Chestertown, the care was great and I was very pleased with the nurses and doctors. It is a good place to be when you are sick, and I let people know!
Nearly two decades ago, Alice Jackson* began struggling with a range of symptoms, including coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath, and was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Almost always caused by smoking, COPD also can result from breathing in dust, chemical fumes or other contaminants over an extended period of time.
Originally from New Jersey, Jackson moved to Caroline County in 2008 to be closer to her nephew’s family. Since 2014, she has experienced increasing difficulty in managing her COPD symptoms and made repeated trips to the Emergency Department at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton, followed by inpatient stays in the hospital and also in skilled nursing facilities for rehabilitation.
“It seemed like every other month or so, I’d have another flare-up and wind up back in the hospital and then in a nursing home,” Jackson recalls.
In October 2017, Jackson experienced another exacerbation and was admitted to UM Shore Medical Center at Easton for a five-day stay. She was discharged to a rehab facility, but her stay was cut short for insurance reasons. “I had already used all my inpatient rehab days that Medicare would pay for, so I had to go home,” says Jackson, who lives alone.
Fortunately for Jackson, UM Shore Regional Health had implemented the new Transitional Nurse Navigator (TNN) Program, which brings a new approach to the discharge process for patients, like Jackson, whose chronic illnesses increase their risk of being readmitted to the hospital. During and after her hospital stay, Jackson worked closely with a social worker and Lori Geisler, MSN, RN, one of four transitional nurse navigators involved in patient care at UM Shore Medical Centers at Chestertown, Dorchester and Easton.
“I felt like I had more support this time. They were fantastic,” says Jackson. “They really went to bat for me with my insurance company to make sure I got my oxygen, my hospital bed and my supplies and equipment for Coumadin and glucose testing. They also helped arrange to have in-home rehabilitation visits from a physical therapist and an occupational therapist.”
Now under the care of primary care provider Kim Herman, MD, in Denton, and pulmonologist Funlola Famuyiwa, MD, in Easton, Jackson also appreciates having an in-home aide several hours a week and support from her local community, including lunches prepared and delivered by local church volunteers. “I’m glad to be staying out of the hospital and doing better at home,” she says.
*Name and certain details have been altered in the interest of patient privacy.
ANTICIPATING PROBLEMS, OFFERING SOLUTIONS
UM SRH launched the Transitional Care Program in 2017 to help reduce the number of people with avoidable or unplanned readmissions to the hospital within 30 days of discharge. People with COPD, as well as people with congestive heart failure and pneumonia, are at high risk of readmission, so the program targeted those groups first.
Here’s how the program works: When high-risk patients arrive at the emergency department or are admitted to UM Shore Medical Centers at Chester town, Dorchester or Easton, a transitional nurse navigator tracks their care to help make sure they will have everything they need when they are discharged.
Angela Pritzlaff, RN, transitional nurse navigator for UM SMC at Chestertown, says she targets a range of potential issues when she works with patients—problems with medications, psychological issues, their main health condition and other health concerns, physical limitations, health literacy, family support, prior hospitalizations and palliative care.
The newest member of the Transitional Nurse Navigator team is Marybeth Daniels, MS, RN, PCCN. A resident of Cambridge, Daniels is happy to be assisting patients during and after discharge from UM Shore Medical Center at Dorchester. “I think it’s always a pleasure to help the people in your own community,” says Daniels.
Depending on what problems are identified, the nurse navigator helps patients by:
- Scheduling follow-up appointments with primary care doctors and specialists, and assisting with transportation arrangements if needed
- Making sure the patients and family members understand their health condition and know what to do if problems arise
- Helping them obtain, understand and manage their medication
- Communicating with skilled nursing facility staff if patients are discharged there
““We talk to the patient to try to find out what problems brought them back to the hospital or tend to bring them back. We try to make sure they have everything in place to prevent readmission. If they have problems getting medications or can’t keep their doctors’ appointments, we help come up with a solution,” Geisler explains.
Transitional nurse navigators follow up with phone calls to their patients and in some cases, home visits. “We’ve caught things in the follow-up phone calls that helped patients avoid coming back to the emergency department and possibly being readmitted,” says Melissa Eigenbrode, MSN, RN, transitional nurse navigator for UM SMC at Easton.
If patients are discharged to a skilled nursing or other residential care facility, nurse navigators connect with staff there to make sure they will have their medications, any needed equipment or supplies, meals that meet their dietary needs, and timely transportation to and from doctors’ appointments.
According to Nancy Bedell, MBA, RN, regional director of care coordination, the Transitional Nurse Navigator Program is a key population health initiative that supports Shore Regional Health’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together. “The goal here is to help people be well and to be able to take care of themselves and their families,” Bedell says.
Editor’s Note: This story is excerpted from the Spring 2018 issue of Maryland’s Health Matters, scheduled for publication in April 2018. Keep reading Compass for information about population health strategies in progress at UM SRH.
In the interest of maintaining providing a safe and secure environment for our patients, visitors, volunteers, and team members, a new system is in place for identifying visitors to UM Shore Medical Centers at Chestertown, Dorchester and Easton.
The visitor sign-in books have been removed from the reception desks in the hospital lobbies and visitors are now given gold wristbands that include the hospital room number of the patient they are visiting. Unit staff should be on the lookout to make sure that visitors to their units are wearing appropriate wristbands.
This is for visitors to patients only; vendors and contractors will not receive wristbands but will be directed as follows:
- Vendors arriving for appointments will be routed through the Materials Management Department to ensure the vendor is registered (any questions, please contact Chris Difatta).
- Contractors arriving for an appointment or to do work will be routed through the Plant Operation Department to sign in/out and review applicable policies for the purpose of maintaining safety.
Judy Thomas has assumed the role of interim director, Ambulatory Services and Clinical Integration for UM Shore Regional Health, effective January 1, 2018. In this capacity, Thomas is working with imaging, lab, outpatient rehab, and cardiovascular service line teams across UM SRH to foster performance improvement and growth. She also is continuing as point person for medical staff providers and their practices.
Thomas joined UM SRH in 2014 as regional manager of Provider Referral and Business Development. She earned her B.A, degree from American University and recently completed her MBA degree from University of Maryland University College.
“Judy has played a key role in many business development initiatives during her time with UM Shore Regional Health,” says Bob Frank, vice president, Operations, for UM SRH. “Coupled with her education and prior health care experience in planning and managing outpatient facilities and multiple service lines, she is an ideal candidate for this interim role.”
Thomas may be reached by phone, 410-822-1000, ext. 5073 or email, email@example.com.
Congratulations to the Cancer Center at University of Maryland Shore Regional Health on another year of excellent care and support for patients and their loved ones. View the newly published 2017 Cancer Annual Report 2017 at this link:
The holidays are now in our ice-coated rear view mirrors, but Marketing & Communications can’t resist sharing one last “spririt of the season” story, this one starring Santa’s helpers Steven White, MD, emergency physician at UM Shore Medical Center at Dorchester, his wife and their dog!
About 30 printers will be available for purchase from UM SRH at a special sale event set for Friday, JANUARY 12, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (or until all items are sold) in the Health Education Center at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton.
The particulars are as follows:
- All sale items are HP brand
- Color as well as B&W
- All are tested as fully operational prior to sale
- Sale is open only to UM SRH team members and volunteers
- Cash only (no checks or credit cards will be accepted)
- All sales will be final (no returns)
The Adult/Adolescent Forensic Nurse Examiner Training Course is a structured 40 hour program and is for the experienced RN to perform forensic examinations on patients age 13 years and older. In addition to this didactic portion are 40-plus hours that must be completed outside of the classroom in order to submit for the Maryland FNE-A certification with the MBON.
- WHEN: March 15, 16, 29 & 30, 2018, 8 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. (must attend all four days for completion of didactic portion)
- WHERE: UM Shore Medical Center at Easton, Classroom 1, 219 S. Washington St. Easton, MD 21601
- COST: $200 for UM SRH employees; $350 for all others. Includes CEU’s (pending application approval*); snacks during training; binder and paper, Atlas of Sexual Violence.
- REGISTRATION: Class size is limited; for a registration form or to ask questions, call Karen Denny, RN FNE A/P, 410-822-1000, ext. 7976, Karen.firstname.lastname@example.org; or register online at https://ummhfoundation.org/mhf_events/adultadolescent-forensic-nurse-examiner-training-course/*PLEASE NOTE: This activity has been submitted to Shore Regional Health for approval to award contact hours. Shore Regional Health is an approved provider of continuing nursing education by the Maryland Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 12
- Printer Sale, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., UM Shore Medical Center at Easton Health Education Center. All sales are final. For details, contact Thomas Towers, 443-786-6348, email@example.com
SATURDAY, JANUARY 20
- Preparing for Childbirth – Labor and Delivery, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., UM Shore Medical Center at Easton Health Education Center. Free class for expectant parents and birthing partners; includes a tour of the newly renovated Birthing Center. Free; register by phone: 410-822-1000, ext. 5200.
SATURDAY, SATURDAY, JANUARY 20
- Safe Sitter, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown. Teaches youth life and safety skills for when they are home alone, watching younger siblings or babysitting. $45 per person (note: some scholarships are available) and includes a workbook and backpack. Advance registration required: Chrissy Nelson, 410-778-7668, ext. 2175.
- Breastfeeding Your Baby, 9 a.m. to 12:15 pm, UM Shore Medical Center at Easton, Health Education Center. Tips and techniques for breastfeeding and pumping. Free; register by phone: 410-822-1000, ext. 5200.
JANUARY SCREENINGS AND SUPPORT GROUPS
Bridge Clinic Support Group – Every Tuesday, 6-7:30pm, UM Shore Medical Center 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. Info: 410-228-5511, ext. 2140.
Breastfeeding Support Group – Tuesdays, 12/4 and 12/19, 10-11:30am, UM Shore Medical Center at Easton, Birthing Center. Led by lactation consultants for new and expectant mothers. Info: 410-822-1000 or 410-228-5511, ext. 5700.
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, 1/23, 6-7:30pm, Cancer Center, Easton. Information and support for patients at any stage – diagnosis, treatment, recovery and survivorship. Info: 410-822-1000, ext. 5387.
Cancer Support Group/Easton – Thursdays, 1/4 and 1/18, Cancer Center, Easton. Information and support for patients at any stage – diagnosis, treatment, recovery and survivorship. Info: 443-254-5940.
Cancer Support Group/Chestertown – Monday, 1/22, 7pm, UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown, Education Center. Information and support for patients at any stage – diagnosis, treatment, recovery and survivorship. Info: 410-778-7668, ext. 2175.
US TOO Prostate Cancer Support Group – Tuesday, 1/9, 6:30pm, Cancer Center, Easton. Patti Plaskon, PhD, LCSW-OSW-C will present on “Making Preparations for Your Family as You Age.” Info: call Sharon Richter, RN, 443-994-5792
Diabetes Support Group/Easton — Monday, 1/8, 5:30 pm. Talbot County Senior Center, 400 Brookletts Ave., Easton. Led by Karen Hollis, RD, CDE. Info: 410-822-1000, ext. 5757.
Diabetes Support Group/Denton – Wednesday, 1/3, 5 p.m., St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, 100 S. 5th Avenue, Denton. Led by Doris Allen, CRNP, CDE. Info: 410-822-1000, ext. 5757.
Diabetes Support Group/Cambridge – Weds, 1/24, 6 p.m., Board Room, UM Shore Medical Center at Dorchester, 300 Byrn Street, Cambridge. Led by Wynn Aroom, RN, CDE. Info: 410-822-1000, ext. 5757.
Diabetes Support Group/Chestertown – Tues, 1/30, 6:30 p.m., Education Center, UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown, 100 Brown St. Led by Chrissy Nelson, BSN, RN, CDE. Info: 410-778-3300, ext. 2175.
Mid-Shore Stroke Support Group – Thurs, 1/4, 12-2pm, UM Shore Medical Pavilion at Easton, 500 Cadmus Lane, Easton. Melissa Means, PhD, will present “Medications After A Stroke.” All stroke survivors and/or caregivers and family members are welcome. Info: Nicole Leonard 410-822-1000 ext. 5068 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Queenstown Stroke Support Group – Tues, 1/23, 12-2pm, UM Shore Pavilion at Queenstown, suite 320. Deborah Weber, LCPC will present “Post Stroke Depression.” All stroke survivors and/or caregivers and family members are welcome. Info: Nicole Leonard, 410-822-1000, ext. 5068 or email@example.com.