South Florida Hospital News
Wednesday October 26, 2016

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October 2016 - Volume 13 - Issue 4




South Pointe Plaza, an award-winning rehabilitation and skilled nursing center that is part of Plaza Health Network, proudly announces its recognition as the first skilled nursing center in South Florida to earn Center of Excellence for Wound Care certification from VOHRA Wound Physicians. South Pointe is one of only 25 skilled nursing centers in the entire country to earn this designation.

The VOHRA Center of Excellence for Wound Management Program identifies and honors facilities that have established superior wound management programs. These facilities must meet multiple requirements such as having a less-than-one-percent wound-related re-hospitalization rate as well as having a verified outcomes-focused wound care program led by a physician specialist and staffed by certified wound care nurses seven days a week.

Florida Blue has selected Broward Health North as a Blue Distinction Center+ for Knee and Hip Replacement as part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated healthcare facilities shown to deliver improved patient safety and better health outcomes based on objective measures that were developed by Blue Cross Blue Shield companies with input from the medical community.

The Comprehensive Cancer Center at Broward Health Medical Center (BHMC) has been granted Affiliate Membership by NRG Oncology – a non-profit research organization that conducts oncologic clinical research and broadly disseminates study results for informing clinical decision-making and healthcare policy. Broward Health North was also approved as an affiliate site.

The membership grants BHMC the opportunity to perform clinical research under Main Member University of Florida. Members must maintain satisfactory data quality, timeliness and audit scores to maintain membership.

Christine “Tina” Gegeckas, RPh, BCOP, pharmacy director at the Regional Cancer Center, earned the 2016 Pharmacist of the Year Award from the Florida Society of Health-System Pharmacists (FSHP).

Gegeckas earned her Bachelor of Science degree in pharmacy from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science. She is a board-certified oncology pharmacist and an active member and immediate past president of the FSHP. She also is a member of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists and the Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association.

There are almost 800,000 patients in the United States who are intubated and require mechanical ventilation annually. More than half of these patients are awake, alert and desperately attempting to communicate with nurses, physicians and their loved ones. Current methods that exist today to assist patients with their communication needs are either antiquated, time consuming or just cumbersome.

A tablet-based communication application called “Speak for Myself™,” was developed by Rebecca Koszalinski, R.N., Ph.D., during her doctoral studies under the guidance of Ruth Tappen, Ed.D., R.N., F.A.A.N., the Christine E. Lynn eminent scholar and professor in the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing at Florida Atlantic University. Speak for Myself™ is proving to be an invaluable tool empowering patients who are voiceless.
“When patients are not able to clearly verbalize their needs, there is an elevated risk of misinterpretation and misunderstanding, which could lead to errors and unintentional poorer quality of care,” said Tappen. “While writing boards and other traditional methods may be helpful, important information is often lost. Furthermore, allowing others to speak for the patient has its limitations.”
Speak for Myself™ enables a patient to communicate his or her level of pain using an analog pain scale. It also helps them convey feelings of fear and loneliness as well as their physical needs such as suctioning, repositioning needs and requests for toileting. The app has a graphic for indicating the location of their pain and the level of pain they are experiencing. When a patient touches the screen to indicate the location of pain on the body graphic, the voice says “it hurts here.” Patients can use shortcuts and single words or type in phrases or full sentences to communicate their needs. The software is predictive so that if a patient begins to enter a word, the program will anticipate and present likely solutions.

Broward Health Medical Center (BHMC) is the first hospital in Broward County to implant a sutureless aortic valve in a patient with aortic stenosis through a newly U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved, minimally invasive delivery system. The EDWARDS INTUITY Elite valve system is a rapid deployment device for surgical aortic valve replacement that incorporates some elements of transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), a minimally invasive valve replacement procedure.

“This new category of surgical valves was designed to streamline procedures and facilitate a smaller incision surgery. This efficient, less invasive procedure can provide significant benefits, both during the procedure and after,” said Kenneth Herskowitz, M.D., Medical Director of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery at Broward Health Medical Center.
Many patients with aortic stenosis have more than one type of heart disease, most commonly coronary artery disease. This valve system enables surgeons to streamline concomitant procedures, which can be beneficial for patients undergoing these longer, more complex surgeries.

Northwest Medical Center (NWMC) is pleased to announce the recent acquisition of the da Vinci® Xi™ Surgical System. NWMC is one of only two hospitals in Broward County to offer this leading edge technology and one of the only hospitals with two surgical robots on-site.

The da Vinci Xi System is a $2 million piece of equipment and is an upgraded, more sophisticated version of the NWMC’s first robot, the da Vinci® Si Surgical System. The newer, da Vinci Xi System can be used across a spectrum of minimally invasive surgical procedures and has been optimized for multi-quadrant surgeries in the areas of gynecology, urology and general surgery.
“The new robot allows us to do operations with small incisions allowing the patient, in most cases, to go home from surgery the same day” said Mark Shachner, M.D., the first physician to perform a robotic surgery using the new Xi Robot at Northwest Medical Center.
The da Vinci Xi Surgical System is the newest and most advanced in minimally invasive surgery and a huge technological leap forward in replacing large-incision abdominal surgeries (open surgery). 

Phil Smith, president and CEO of the Phil Smith Automotive Group, has donated $7 million to fund state-of- the-art neurological care at Holy Cross Hospital. A longtime supporter of the hospital, Smith has designated these funds to name the Phil Smith Neuroscience Institute and to establish the Phil Smith ALS and Movement Disorder Clinic. He is earmarking $2 million of the gift as matching funds in a community challenge to bring first class research and treatments to South Florida.

Once established, the Phil Smith ALS and Movement Disorders Clinic will provide the local community with access to leading edge clinical trials and research through an expanded relationship with Massachusetts General Hospital, the largest teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School.
The clinic will be permanently housed in what will now be known as the Phil Smith Neurological Science Institute at Holy Cross. The institute currently includes more than 15 neuro physician specialists and provides a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary approach to neurological conditions and diseases that affect thousands of individuals such as ALS, a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.

West Boca Medical Center is planning a $9.9 million project designed to expand and enlarge operating room capabilities for modernization, improved efficiency and advanced technological capability. Construction, which is estimated to begin early next year, will include a new OR and the renovation and expansion of three of the five existing ORs. The beds in the post-anesthesia care unit will more than double from 6 to 14, and the unit will be remodeled as well.

One goal of the project, which is expected to be completed in about 18 months, is to provide more spacious ORs to accommodate orthopedic, spinal and robotic surgeries. The addition of the sixth OR will allow for more surgeries to be performed and provide more flexibility for surgeons to schedule cases. 
The Comprehensive Cancer Center at Broward Health North (BHN) has been granted Affiliate Membership by NRG Oncology – a non-profit research organization that conducts oncologic clinical research and broadly disseminates study results for informing clinical decision-making and healthcare policy.
The membership grants BHN the opportunity to perform clinical research under Main Member University of Florida. Members must maintain satisfactory data quality, timeliness and audit scores to maintain membership.
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