South Florida Hospital News
Saturday November 25, 2017

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November 2017 - Volume 14 - Issue 5




The Board of Commissioners of the South Broward Hospital District, which oversees the operations for Memorial Healthcare System, voted to adopt a millage rate of 0.1496 – making this the seventh year in a row that the Board has elected to lower the overall millage rate for the District, resulting in the lowest rate in the history of the South Broward Hospital District.

With no net tax revenue remaining from the newly adopted millage rate, the District will use operating income to cover all uncompensated care costs for the entire Memorial Healthcare System, including its six hospitals and its South Broward Community Health Services. In fiscal year 2018, uncompensated care is projected to exceed $923.1 million.
The 0.1496 millage rate represents a 7 percent decrease from last year’s rate of 0.1615. The resulting gross taxes levied are estimated to reach $8.2 million. After accounting for early payment discounts and a certain percentage of uncollectible taxes, the anticipated tax payments this year of $7.9 million will provide the District enough revenue to cover only its governmental obligations, which include paying Broward County’s Medicaid Match program and community redevelopment agencies in several municipalities in south Broward County, as well as tax collector commissions and property appraiser fees.

As cardiologists, naturally the physicians at HeartWell are accustomed to seeing patients with various heart issues. But no two patients are exactly alike – and therefore, no two treatment programs are identical.

HeartWell has established a CHIP program – Complete revascularization for High-risk Indicated Patients – that identifies patients who are at high risk for revascularization of their coronary artery blockages and work to establish a personalized treatment program to help by other means.
“We see patients that may have already had surgery, and can’t handle another one, or may be too frail to sustain a surgical procedure due to their low ejection fraction, so our goal is to work as a team in a multidisciplinary approach with other cardiac specialists to formulate the right protocol for these patients,” said Dr. Ramon Lloret, who is spearheading the CHIP program.
Lloret says that he, as an interventional cardiologist, consults with other doctors such as cardiovascular surgeons, heart failure specialists, clinical cardiologists and electrophysiologists to review patient records and provide advice and counsel on the best option.
He notes that there are many issues that make patients a high surgical risk. Co-morbid illnesses such as diabetes, mitral valve regurgitation, severe hypertension or renal insufficiency make surgery a less viable option. Patients who have a low-ejection fraction or active heart failure as well as complex coronary anatomy including chronic total occlusion or left main disease are also considered at the highest risk. Patients with advanced age and frailty are additional factors that would reduce the likelihood a surgeon would operate.
In these cases, Dr. Lloret says that the interventional cardiologist re-vascularizes the patient percutaneously, using balloons, stents, rotablational atherectomy, or possible laser with the aid of hemodynamic support when necessary. Hemodynamic support for a failing heart or mechanical circulatory support (MCS) can come in the form of an intra-aortic balloon pump, or percutaneous, ventricular assist device such as an Impella, Tandem Heart or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO). The Team of interventionalist cardiologists includes Ramon L. Lloret, M.D., Ramon Quesada, M.D., Marcus St. John, M.D., Bernardo Lopez-Sanabria, M.D., and Alvaro Gomez, M.D.
“We have developed several other options for these high-risk indicated patients, including hybrid procedures that combine treatments for excellent outcomes,” added Dr. Lloret. He notes that there are many prescription medications that can also be very effective.
HeartWell cardiologists offer a wide-range of customized treatment plans for their cardiac patients. The establishment of the CHIP program formalizes the process and provides patients with a better understanding of how their particular heart issues will be tackled.

Holy Cross Hospital implemented several community outreach initiatives to serve Broward County's most vulnerable residents in the wake of Hurricane Irma.

Holy Cross Hospital physicians and Associates:
- partnered with Florida Senator Gary M. Farmer, Jr. and Florida Representative Patricia H. Williams to serve 500 meals to families in need at Deerfield High School;
- delivered food and water to patients and their families through the Holy Cross Medical Group infectious disease office of Drs. M. Gorensek and Carlos Guerra;
- participated in RESTORE954 in partnership with the Urban League of Broward County, Broward County Public Schools, United Way of Broward County, JM Family Enterprises, Church United City of South Florida, the Miami Dolphins, Broward Sheriff’s Office and the City of Fort Lauderdale Police Department. Holy Cross Hospital provided nurses who triaged and worked with fire rescue to address the needs of diabetics who had run out of test strips; patients who had run out of their medications and were unable to refill them because pharmacies remained closed; and those experiencing current health issues. As a result, more than 100 residents were treated and four were transported to the local emergency room for active seizures, cardiac issues and hypoglycemia;
- partnered with Oakland Park, Margate and Boca Raton Fire Rescue teams to collect donations for necessities that were delivered to residents in the Florida Keys, with an escort by the Federal Police; and
- along with volunteers and community partners, delivered 2,000 additional three-day disaster meal packages to those in need throughout Broward County, focusing on older homebound residents who had no power and no other opportunity to receive the food they need. This initiative was funded by Jewish Federation of Broward and Community Foundation of Broward.
In preparation for hurricane season, Holy Cross also delivered five-day, shelf-stable disaster meal packages to seniors over 65 and coordinated the distribution of an additional 850 five-day disaster meal packages for seniors that were distributed by Chen Medical staff through a grant from CBS Eco-Media and Chen Medical.  

St. Mary’s Medical Center recently presented the DAISY Award to ICU nurse Antonio Sanchez-Perez. In addition to being considered a mentor to new nurses and a role model for his entire unit, Antonio’s co-workers say he provides support and a sense of tranquility in the most stressful situations. 





"Wil" U. Daley, a nurse in the cardiovascular intensive care unit at Holy Cross Hospital, has received a 2017 DAISY Award for the respect and empathy he has for patients and their families.

Daley was nominated by the daughter of a patient in his care, who wrote, “(My dad) was brought to the CV-ICU exhausted and scared. William met us there. He took care of Dad’s medical needs but also saw him as a person. I felt the respect and admiration he had for my father and the trust he placed in learning and respecting his wishes. I felt I had a partner in the care for the most important person in my life.”

Holy Cross Hospital in Fort Lauderdale has honored nurse Adam Crawford with a 2017 DAISY Award in honor of his integrity and commitment to patients. Crawford serves in the hospital's intensive rehabilitation unit.

He was nominated for the award by a family member of an elderly patient in his care, who wrote, “Adam is a rare person who can administer effectively to the physical needs of the elderly without sacrificing the patience, respect and depth they are so desperate for. He listens carefully, sizes up a situation and sees what is needed and deserved and delivers his service gracefully. He shows a beautiful intention of good will.”

The Palm Beach Children’s Hospital at St. Mary’s Medical Center is proud to name NICU nurse Eileen Penque as its newest DAISY Award winner.  She was honored for her work ethic, and for always being a team player in her department. Eileen is described as humble and is admired for continuously going beyond the call of duty, all while maintaining a smile on her face. Her colleagues also commended her for tireless behind the scenes efforts in achieving the best care possible for the hospital’s tiniest patients.




Cleveland Clinic Florida recognized five South Florida “Women of Excellence” at the inaugural Sapphire Luncheon. Hosted by the Women’s Professional Staff Association (WPSA) at Cleveland Clinic Florida, the event honored women in the community who are innovative leaders achieving professional and personal excellence.

The Sapphire honorees are:
Business - Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, President and CEO of Celebrity Cruises
Entrepreneur - Ramola Ramesh Motwani, Chairwoman and CEO of Merrimac Ventures
Community Service - Linda B. Carter, President/CEO of the Community Foundation of Broward
Healthcare - Kathleen Cannon, CEO/President of United Way of Broward County
Education - Madeline M. Pumariega, Chancellor of 28 colleges that make up the Florida College System

Boynton Beach resident Christine Kossman was honored by Holy Cross Hospital as the 2017 Cancer Survivor of the Year.

“Imagine waking up every morning for 46 years and hoping this isn't your last day to live or planning a wonderful day just in case it is,” said Kossman, who has stage 4 lung cancer and is being treated at the Holy Cross Bienes Comprehensive Cancer Center. “I was given one year to live before coming to Holy Cross and it is now two years and I am still here. Doctor Drew promised not to let me die and so far he is keeping his word. Other than being tired, I actually feel great!”

Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA), a national network of five hospitals headquartered in Boca Raton, ranked third in the U.S. Hospitals category of YouGov’s 2017 Brand Health rankings. The 2017 ranking derived from respondents’ rating of 42 nationally-recognized hospitals and hospital systems on six important brand metrics: quality, value, impression, satisfaction, reputation and willingness to recommend. The results were based on a national survey of 13,207 adults over 18 years of age polled between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017.

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