South Florida Hospital News
Sunday March 29, 2015
March 2015 - Volume 11 - Issue 9




The Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine at Florida Atlantic University has joined the ranks of only a handful of medical schools in the country to receive the prestigious Ticho Prize from the Ernst and Gertrude Ticho Charitable Foundation to stimulate student interest in psychiatric medicine and to enhance education in psychiatry. Scholarships from the $50,000 Ticho Prize endowment fund will be awarded annually to a promising student who is graduating from FAU’s medical school to encourage him or her to pursue a career in psychiatry, and in particular, to pay attention to the emotional state and feelings of the patient.  
The patient interview is the most commonly used procedure employed by clinicians to garner valuable information about their patient’s physical and mental well-being. Historically, communication training for clinicians and other healthcare providers has received much less attention throughout the training process than other clinical tasks. FAU’s innovative medical education curriculum provides a student-centered and patient-focused approach with early clinical experiences with local physicians, area hospitals and health departments. Third-year students complete core clerkships in various specialties including psychiatry, allowing them to learn within a health care system, master clinical skills and knowledge and get to know their patients.
Broward Health Imperial Point (BHIP) is pleased to announce it has achieved "Exemplar" status for its Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders (NICHE) program, making it the first and only hospital in Broward County to receive this distinction.
The NICHE designation underscores BHIP’s commitment to excellence in the care of patients ages 65 and older. It also recognizes the hospital’s ongoing, high-level dedication to geriatric care and the implementation of high-quality, system-wide interventions and initiatives that demonstrate organizational commitment to the care of older adults.
The "Exemplar" status — the highest of four possible program levels — was assigned following a rigorous program evaluation of the current state and future goals of BHIP’s NICHE program. The requirements include implementation of the NICHE Geriatric Resource Nurse (GRN) model and evidence-based protocols on all applicable units, including specialty units; implementation of systemic aging-sensitive policies; inclusion of the input of patient, families, and community-based providers in planning and implementation of NICHE initiatives and assuming regional and national leadership roles.
Mark Robitaille, president and chief executive officer of Martin Health System, received the Pete Hegener Leadership Award from the Economic Development Council of St. Lucie County.
The award is bestowed on an individual or organization that personifies Pete Hegener’s dedication to growing economic opportunities and preserving a high quality of life for the community. The recipient must exhibit commitment to a vision to enrich the economic future of St. Lucie County, and must also possess extraordinary ability to recognize and work with the talents of other individuals, being able to put community interests ahead of his or her personal goals.


Florida Blue has honored University of Miami Hospital, the flagship hospital of UHealth – University of Miami Health System, with a Blue Distinction Center+ designation in the area of bariatric surgery. Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care are nationally designated healthcare facilities shown to deliver quality care based on objective measures, which were developed with input from the medical community, for patient safety and better health outcomes.
“This recognition is a testament to the excellent care we provide to our bariatric patients at University of Miami Hospital,” said Nestor de la Cruz-Muñoz, M.D., Chief of the Division of Laparoendoscopic and Bariatric Surgery. “We have an expert team in bariatric surgery that continues to lead the field in improving the health of obese patients.”
The Dade County Medical Association (DCMA) has selected HealthFusion, Inc., provider of top-ranked MediTouch® EHR software, as a Vendor of Choice for electronic health records (EHRs). The DCMA, the largest county medical association in Florida, is introducing HealthFusion’s MediTouch to its more than 1,000 physician members looking to implement or upgrade EHRs in their practices and avoid Medicare penalties.
“Selecting the right EHR is critical for our physicians to improve the daily practice of medicine, including workflow and quality of care,” said Patricia Handler, Executive Vice President of the DCMA. "HealthFusion has over 23,000 users, and provides an affordable, cloud-based electronic health record solution created by doctors, for doctors, and we are impressed with MediTouch because of its ease of use, affordable cost, and excellent customer support.”
MediTouch is an EHR conceived by physicians for physicians and designed for practices of all sizes. The leading edge software is a total medical software solution with EHR, Practice Management, Clearinghouse and a Patient Portal. The system is cloud-based and works with tablets, PCs, and smart phones.
Broward Health Foundation announced the second multi-million dollar gift received toward the foundation’s $20 million, two-year capital campaign – It’s All About KIDS – A Special Campaign for Broward Health. The generous $2 million contribution comes from the Broward-based company Pediatrix Medical Group, a leading provider of neonatal, anesthesia, maternal-fetal, and pediatric medical and surgical subspecialty services as well as the nation's largest provider of newborn hearing screens.
“The children’s hospital holds a special place in our hearts at Pediatrix. For more than 34 years, virtually since our company’s inception, we have been providing care at Broward Health, where every day we get to see life-changing results and improved outcomes for children and babies,” said Dr. Roger Medel, CEO and co-founder of Pediatrix Medical Group. “We know that the changes to the hospital will give patients and their families what they need during times of health crisis and that even the smallest enhancements can mean a lot to these families.”
This gift brings Dr. Medel’s association with the hospital full-circle, as he served as the neonatologist that led the team 34 years ago to initially open the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Broward Health Medical Center’s children’s hospital.
With this second extraordinary gift, the Broward Health Foundation is well on its way to achieve its goal to match the Salah Foundation’s challenge and raise $20 million toward the $52 million children’s hospital expansion.
The North Broward Hospital District Board of Commissioners has approved plans for a $56 million expansion of Broward Health Coral Springs (BHCS). The expansion will help to provide greater access to quality healthcare for the area’s growing population by increasing bed capacity to 250 from the hospital’s current 196. Renovations will include an increased number of surgical beds, construction of private post-partum rooms at Maternity Place and a relocation of the neonatal intensive care unit for closer proximity to mothers. Upgrades will also be made to the campus’s central energy plant.
Current capacity at BHCS inhibits the hospital’s overall growth, with its service area projected to increase an estimated 37 percent by 2040 and admission rates increasing by 42 percent. The combined population boom and age demographics in the area drive the demand for additional beds for patient care. The return on investment is projected to be six percent through 2030, meaning it will take just 12 years to recover the investment on the project. The bidding process for design and construction proposals is underway.
The estimated timeframe for breaking ground is June/July 2016 with an estimated completion date by the first half of 2018.
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