Chester River Health Foundation to Honor Saunders at Golf Fundraiser

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Twenty-five years ago, the Chester River Health Foundation’s first fundraising goal was to fund the construction of a $450,000 outpatient kidney dialysis facility on the hospital’s campus. Then newly-elected Foundation board member C. Daniel Saunders, Esq., said, “How about a golf tournament fundraiser?” The rest is history.

On May 31, 2019, the Foundation will host its 25th annual golf tournament at the Chester River Yacht & Country Club and will honor Saunders, co-founder of the event, He and his wife, Donna, have been top philanthropic supporters of the Chestertown hospital for years and have sponsored of this tournament’s $10,000 putting contest since its inception.

Sponsored for a second consecutive year by the Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary, this year’s tournament will raise funds for a chemistry analyzer for the laboratory at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown.

Dan Saunders

“A chemistry analyzer is the backbone of all diagnostic laboratory work at the hospital,” said Sue Edson, Auxiliary president. “The machines run 24/7/365 and virtually every emergency patient, lab outpatients and all inpatients have tests run on this equipment. The new chemistry analyzer, which costs $200,000, offers enhanced technologies that enable the hospital to replace two of the existing machines with one that is state-of-the art.”

Noting the importance of purchasing the new equipment, the Auxiliary has made a significant donation – $30,000 – as the golf tournament sponsor.

Tee time for this rain or shine event is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. In tribute to Saunders, a fan of steel drum music, golfers and volunteers will be entertained by disc jockey Pres Jacobs, who will play island-style music during golfer check-in and the buffet lunch, which begins at 11:00 a.m.

Many events along the course, staffed by hospital employees and Auxiliary volunteers, will give golfers opportunities to win a host of donated prizes – including a trip to the 2020 Super Bowl in Miami, gift certificates and cash.

Registration and sponsorship information can be found on the Chester River Health Foundation’s website at: www.umcrhf.org/events or by phone at (410) 810-5661.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

Local Leaders Join Chester River Health Foundation Board

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Elizabeth (Barrie) Meima, chairperson of the Chester River Health Foundation, recently announced that two local community leaders have joined the Foundation’s Board of Directors: Kyle K. Kirby, Esq. of Rock Hall and Richard H. Lance, Ph.D., of Chestertown.

Kent County native Kyle Kirby graduated from James Madison University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Management and is a Cum Laude graduate with a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Baltimore School of Law.  He practices with the MacLeod Law Group in Chestertown.

“I believe our hospital is a valuable part of our community and I am interested in getting more involved in service work within the community,” says Kirby. “My experience as an attorney will be beneficial to the Board in working toward the goals of the Foundation. I believe I also will also have the ability to connect with a younger generation of benefactors.”

Kyle K. Kirby, Esq. and Richard H. Lance, Ph.D.

Richard (Dick) Lance is a professor emeritus with Cornell University, College of Engineering, Theoretical and Applied Mechanics. He and his wife retired to Chestertown in 1998. He has continued to focus on teaching and has become closely associated with the Washington College Academy of Lifelong Learning.

“I joined the Foundation Board after just getting out of the hospital,” says Lance. “My treatment and care were very good, and made me want to support the Foundation’s goal of advancing quality health care in our community.”

Speaking on behalf of the Foundation Board, Meima stated: “We are pleased to welcome these two community leaders who bring unique talents and dedication to support our mission.”

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

UM SMC Imaging Department Plans for New, State of the Art CT Scanner

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UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown’s diagnostic imaging department will soon be undergoing renovation in preparation for the arrival of a GE Revolution EVO CT scanner, Penny Olivi, Shore Regional Health’s director, Diagnostic Imaging has announced.

According to Olivi, the new CT scanner will serve as a state-of-the-art diagnostic tool for patients in emergency and acute care, and also for outpatients. CT scans help diagnose illnesses as well as damage involving the brain and other soft tissue in patients suffering strokes, heart attacks, trauma to the abdomen, shortness of breath, blood clots in the lung, gastrointestinal bleeding and generalized pain.

Says Olivi, “We selected the GE Revolution EVO CT scanner because it provides the greatest clinical benefit, in terms of its advanced imaging capacity as well as its shorter scan times that reduce the patient’s radiation exposure. This state-of-the-art equipment also provides the capability to perform significantly advanced brain profusion studies so that patients can either be treated immediately with a clot-busting drug or if necessary, transported to a neurosurgery center. Also, because CT scans provide more detailed images than X-rays, the GE Revolution EVO CT scanner will be an effective tool in many types of cancer diagnosis.”

The majority of the purchase of the GE Revolution EVO CT scanner and the suite renovation is funded by UM Shore Regional Health’s Board-designated fund, SRH Fund for Kent County, which includes the proceeds from the sale of Shore Nursing and Rehabilitation Center at Chestertown in early 2018 and the prior sale of three properties on Valley Road in Chestertown.

According to Barrie Meima, Chester River Health Foundation board chair, the Foundation will be raising funds to support the cost of the project. “This equipment represents a key advancement in the access to quality care here in Chestertown,” says Meima. “For those needing the scan on an outpatient basis, it will eliminate the need to travel outside the county, and for those in emergency or acute care, it will help speed diagnosis and treatment, and in many cases, save lives. All of us on the Foundation Board are excited about this technology’s capabilities and looking forward to receiving charitable support from the community to help realize the scanner’s full potential.”

So that there will be no interruption of CT scanning services in Chestertown, a temporary, a mobile CT unit is being installed adjacent to the hospital while the renovation, installation and licensing of the new unit is being completed. Arrival and set-up of the mobile unit is scheduled during the week of March 18, 2019.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

Four Chestertown Nurses Nominated for Nurse Excellence Awards

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University of Maryland Shore Regional Health has announced the 27 nominees for the upcoming Nurse Excellence Awards program, set for Monday, May 6, 2019 at the Rufus M. and Loraine Hall Todd Performing Arts Center at Chesapeake College.

There are six categories in the Nurse Excellence Awards program — five awards are given to individual nurses and one is given to the nursing staff of a unit or department. Nominations are submitted through an online process that is managed by the Nurse Excellence Awards Committee and is open to all staff throughout UM SRH.

The UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown nurses honored as Nurse Excellence Award candidates are: Eden Kinser, of Rock Hall and Cassandra Price, of Worton, both nominated for the Mentorship/Advocacy Award; and Christopher Burke, of Chestertown and Kayla Toulson, of Chester, both nominated for the Commitment to Others Award.

According to Ruth Ann Jones, senior vice president, Patient Care Services and chief nursing officer for UM Shore Regional Health, this year’s nominees are an outstanding group. “While one winner will be chosen for each of the award categories, all nominees  deserve recognition for their exceptional commitment to quality patient care and the spirit of teamwork and professionalism they bring every day to their hospitals and our health care organization as a whole,” says Jones.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

Tax Credits Offered by UM Chester River Health Foundation

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The Chester River Health Foundation has been awarded a $25,000 allocation of Maryland state tax credits in support of its efforts to raise $200,000 to fund a new chemistry analyzer for the lab at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown. The credits were awarded by the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development’s Community Investment Tax Credit (CITC) program and must be sold by December 31, 2020.

“A chemistry analyzer is the backbone of all diagnostic laboratory work at every hospital,” said Margaret Pulleyn, site coordinator for the lab in Chestertown. “Presently, the hospital has three analyzers, two of which are nearing the end of their useful lives and must be replaced.”

“Our machines run 24/7/365 and test approximately 198 specimens each day; each specimen may include 10 individual components,” continued Pulleyn.  “Tests for virtually all emergency patients, lab outpatients and all inpatients are run on this equipment, which also performs all blood tests for Hepatitis and HIV for the Shore Regional Health system.”

Margaret Pulleyn, site coordinator, Laboratory Services, UM SMC at Chestertown

The sale of these tax credits will help the Foundation fund the purchase of one replacement machine that will perform a higher volume and a broader menu of tests than the two machines it will replace.

“The Community Investment Tax Credit program has afforded the Foundation the opportunity to forge new and renewed relationships with people and businesses in our community,” says Maryann Ruehrmund, CFRE, executive director. “In recent years, this program has helped fund the purchase of 10 suites of patient room furnishings and all new laparoscopic equipment for the operating rooms. Nearly every patient receiving care at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown has benefitted from this program.”

These tax credits are offered to individuals and businesses who make a donation at the $1,000 level or above and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. The credits offset any Maryland state tax owed on a 50% basis meaning, a $1,000 donation earns $500 of actual state credits.

“The credits are offered in addition to any deduction taken for making a charitable gift – or in addition to the standardized deduction,” Ruehrmund said. “I encourage anyone who is interested to contact me quickly as the credits sell fast.”

For more information or to secure an allocation of credits, please call the Chester River Health Foundation, (410) 810-5660

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

Chester River Home Care Staff Earn Professional Certification

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Eight University of Maryland Chester River Home Care team members have obtained their Certified OASIS Quality Specialist (COQS) designation, Trish Focht, manager, of the Chestertown-based home care agency has announced. The OASIS certified team members are: Katie Davis, Jennifer Dupre, Brooke Maier, Melissa Maule, Melissa Myers, Brooke Smith, Jennifer Walters and Emily Welsh.

Photo: Now holding OASIS certification are UM Chester River Home Care team members (seated) Melissa Maule and Jennifer Dupre and (standing) Melissa Myers, Brooke Smith, Brooke Maier, Emily Welsh, and Katie Davis. Not pictured: Jennifer Walter.

OASIS is data that is collected by home health clinicians during a home visit.  It is required for all patients who receive skilled home health services under Medicare or Medicaid. “OASIS data is used in the determination of quality measures outcomes, STAR Ratings, and reimbursement,” Focht explains. “It’s important for clinicians to have OASIS education and certification to improve patient outcomes and quality of care, as well as improve the reimbursement. I am very proud of our team members’ dedication and accomplishment in earning this certification.”

UM Chester River Home Care was established in 1997. Each year, agency staff members drive more than 150,000 miles in Kent and Queen Anne’s County to provide more than 19,000 home care visits serving approximately 1100 patients. In five out of five patient satisfaction ratings, UM CRHC has scored significantly higher than the state and national averages.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

Assistive Technology for Cardiac Arrest Response Available at UM SMC

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When a patient goes into cardiac arrest and CPR is required, the licensed staff at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown have a new life-saving tool: a LUCAS 3 Chest Compression System by Physio Control. The self-contained, 19-pound device will be put into service in March after all staff are trained.

Funded by community donations to the Chester River Health Foundation, the LUCAS 3 System cost nearly $16,000. “It will add a significant resource to the hospital especially during the evening and night shifts when there isn’t a large pool of additional staff to respond to a cardiac arrest,” says Beverly Greaves, clinical nurse, Chestertown Emergency Department. Greaves has begun training all nursing supervisors, clinical coordinators and Emergency Department staff to use the device.

Photo: Shown during the first LUCAS 3 training are: (seated) Cassandra Price, clinical nurse coordinator, Acute Care and Marjorie Shaffer, clinical nurse, Acute Care; (standing) Justin Harper, lieutenant, Kent County Emergency Services; Rebecca Baxter, administrative supervisor, and Beverly Greaves, clinical nurse, Emergency Department.

“The physical demands for performing CRP under the new standards are exhausting even for the most physically fit person,” Greaves explains. “Staff members are permitted to do manual chest compressions for just two minutes,then another staff member must step in. With the LUCAS 3device, ‘rescuer fatigue’ is no longer a problem as the device performs consistent, repetitive chest compressions for as long as necessary.”

With training, all licensed, CPR-certified staff members – a physicians, a nurse and techs – are permitted to use this life-saving device, with training. Says Greaves, “During a cardiac arrest, it’s a fast-paced environment and resuscitation can run for hours. The LUCAS 3 is a state-of-the-art tool that will help us achieve the best possible outcome for our patients.”

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

CRHC Foundation Announces New Officers and New Member

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Chester River Health Foundation has announced new officers and a new Board member. The Foundation raises funds that enable UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown to provide the highest quality health care services by funding the purchase of new and replacement medical equipment and technology and by supporting advanced education and professional certifications for employees.

Elizabeth (Barrie) Meima of Chestertown, a retired philanthropy executive from Washington D.C., has been elected chairperson of the Foundation Board. “It is an honor to be a part of the Foundation and participate in its work to maintain and improve the excellent quality of services, which our Hospital provides the community,” said Meima. “Recognizing that our hospital is essential to the success of the region was demonstrated by record support received by the Foundation’s Annual Campaign that we just completed. I believe that the hospital’s ability to continue offering highly personalized and exceptional care starts with having the best-possible equipment and technology, and employing highly-qualified employees, who significantly enhance the hospital’s value to all of us in the community. The Foundation exists to help assure this level or care, day in and day out.”

Meima also announced the Foundation Board’s new slate of officers. They are Sandra Bjork, vice chairperson; Kenneth Kozel, president; Charles Lerner, Esq., secretary; Sigrid Whaley, assistant secretary; JoAnne Hahey, treasurer; and Richard (Dick) Barker, assistant treasurer.

Elizabeth (Barrie) Meima and Jane E. Hukill

Welcomed as a returning member of the Board is Jane E. Hukill, of Worton. Said Meima, “We are moving into a challenging year of raising funds for two vital pieces of medical equipment: 128-slice CT scanner for radiology and a chemistry analyzer for the laboratory. Jane’s vast experience in leadership as a board member with several non-profits and her fundraising skills will be tapped into immediately.”

“The many years that I have volunteered for Chester River Hospital have been extremely rewarding,” said Hukill. “The hospital and its staff deserve support by all who live here, whether through volunteer work or other forms of support.  I am delighted to re-join the Chester River Health Foundation this year to help continue those efforts into the future.”

The Chester River Health Foundation also accepts donations on behalf of UM Chester River Home Care to fund a program that supplies medically-necessary, durable home medical equipment and medicines that insurance doesn’t cover and patients can’t afford. “This program’s total focus is providing patients with what they need medically to remain safe, while at home under care,” says Meima.

For more information about the Foundation’s efforts, please contact Maryann Ruehrmund, executive director, 410-810-5660 or visit the Foundation’s new web site at www.umcrhf.org.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

CRHC Auxiliary Celebrates 60 Years and Installs New Officers

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The Chester River Hospital Center Auxiliary celebrated 60 years of service to health care in Kent and northern Queen Anne’s counties at its 2019 Annual Meeting held at Heron Point in Chestertown on Tuesday, January 8. The occasion included a luncheon, remarks by Peggy Roca, manager of Perioperative Services at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown, installation of new officers and recognition of individual members for reaching milestones in their volunteer hours accumulated.

Auxiliary President Sue Edson announced that during 2018, Auxiliary volunteers worked approximately 10,358 hours in the hospital gift shop, at the Nearly New Shop and on Board activities. According to the Maryland Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism, volunteer time is valued at $24.69 per hour, which brings the total value of CRHC Auxiliary members’ time volunteered during the year to $259,386.

“You are all a very important part of the team at our hospital here in Chestertown,” said Edson. “Thank you for all the time you have given this year and if you know anyone who has four hours a week available, we always need additional volunteers!”

Photo: CRHC Auxiliary “star volunteers” for 2018, l. to r.: Joanna Rash, Jane Hukill, Gwinn Derricott, Phyllis Brown, and Carol Droge. Not shown: Vicki Neal, Diane McAneny, Thelma Bright, Shirley Gaynor, Trish Harwood and Charlotte Slagle. 

Volunteers who had accumulated 500 hours of service or more were presented with a gold star pin. This year year’s honorees were: for the Nearly New Shop, Thelma Bright, Shirley Gaynor, Trish Harwood, Charlotte Slagle and Joanna Rash; in the hospital and the Gift Shop, Phyllis Brown, Gwinn Derricott, Carol Droge, Jane Hukill, Diane McAneny and Vicki Neal.

Installed as the Auxiliary’s new officers were Sue Edson, president; Jack Edson, vice president & immediate past president; Joann Bowdle, parliamentarian; Carol Droge, corresponding secretary; Kathy Ruge, secretary; and Jean Anthony, treasurer.

Peggy Roca provided an overview of the many kinds of surgery performed at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown and thanked the Auxiliary for its many generous donations to help make possible all-new, state of the art equipment available to the surgical services team. “We have the best of the best equipment here to care for our patients’ surgical needs,” Roca said.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

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