AMH EMS celebrates three decades of excellence
The AMH emergency medical services (EMS) team is celebrating a big birthday: For 30 years, the area’s leading provider of emergency care has been providing services for families in need.
Dennis Eyer, EMT, and Rex Allen Book, paramedic, have been a part of the team since the beginning. “It’s hard to believe it’s been 30 years,” says Eyer. “The department started with around eight to 10 people and just two ambulances. Now there are 67 people.”
The area’s only hospital-based ambulance service’s coverage area has expanded beyond Alton to 475 square miles. In addition to covering a larger territory, the 11 ambulances in the fleet are equipped with more life-saving, pre-hospital medicine and resources.
“We have a much faster response time, and the technology on board allows us to learn more about a patient’s health sooner so we can diagnose and problem-solve,” says Book.
Every ambulance is equipped with Bluetooth technology that sends information about patients to the staff at the hospital. “Our onboard EKGs can transmit information to our cardiac cath team. This means our ER team can be better prepared for the patient’s proper treatment when the patient arrives at the hospital,” says Jason Bowman, EMS manager.
The ambulances also have equipment that makes it safer for paramedics to transport patients and administer care. “Some of the biggest changes that I’ve seen are the additions of self-loading cots and the self-compressing CPR machines,” says Eyer.
“We are so much better prepared because the hospital and BJC are committed to ensuring that we have what we need to serve the communities,” says Book.
Rex Allen Book, left, and Dennis Eyer have been with AMH’s EMS team since it started in 1988. | Photo by Tim Mudrovic
Chaplain Bruce Baumberger retires
After nearly 12 years of dedicated service to AMH and BJC, Chaplain Bruce Baumberger has retired, effective Jan. 4.
“We have been blessed to have Chaplain Bruce attending to the spiritual needs of our patients, family members and staff since 2007,” says Bryan Hartwick, regional vice president of human resources for AMH and Christian Hospital. “He has been there for all of us during times of crisis, myself included.
“Chaplain Bruce has partnered with other chaplains, physicians, volunteers and AMH leadership to elevate the level of spiritual care provided. He has been instrumental in implementing the Employees Helping Employees Help Fund and the C.A.R.E. Network, as well as the WeCare (second victim trauma) program at AMH,” Hartwick adds. “He has touched too many lives to try to capture all of the details. He is leaving AMH a better place because of his compassion, caring and dedication.”
It was all in a day’s work, according to Baumberger.
“In reflecting on my ministry at Alton Memorial Hospital, this thought springs to mind: We have been through a lot together and God has privileged me beyond measure,” he said in a note to employees. “Over the course of the 11 or so years I have been your chaplain, I have performed almost 50 weddings, primarily for couples directly or indirectly associated with the hospital. I have performed services for every one of the individuals memorialized in our Healing Garden. We have shared heartache and joy, frustration and elation. We have wept and we have laughed.
“I have seen the Spirit of Christ in you and I hope you have seen Him in me. Of all the things I will miss about AMH, it will be YOU, the people I have been honored and privileged to work with. I am proud and humbled to be called your chaplain. Although some of you may not darken the door of a church — and I hope one day you will — know this: ‘The Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.’ (1 Samuel 16:7)
“And He has let me see it as well. Ponder on it — and God bless.”
Jingling all the day
AMH EMS manager Jason Bowman was just one of several AMH employees who rang the bell Dec. 13 for the Salvation Army’s annual bell ringing campaign at the Godfrey, Illinois, Schnucks. Donors of all ages contributed. | Photo by Dave Whaley
Sarah Dierker is new AMH chaplain
Sarah Dierker is already quite familiar with BJC as she begins serving as chaplain for AMH.
A native of Pittsfield, Illinois, Dierker succeeded Bruce Baumberger upon his retirement Jan. 4. Dierker served a chaplain internship at Christian Hospital in 2016 and most recently was a chaplain resident at Barnes-Jewish Hospital.
“I got into Christian education to be a youth leader, but upon graduation I was advised to look at becoming a chaplain,” Dierker says. “After just a short time at Christian Hospital, I just loved it.”
After becoming the youth leader at Webster United Methodist Church in St. Louis, Dierker returned to BJC at BJH, where she focused on four units — cardiac surgical step down, colorectal/urologic surgery, thoracic surgery, and general medicine.
“You see a lot just in those units, and I was on call quite a bit,” Dierker says. “But it was all a great experience, and I came to really love BJC.”
Dierker earned her bachelor of arts in philosophy and religion, with concentrations in New Testament and church history, from Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri, in 2011 and a master of divinity, concentrations in Christian education and biblical/historical theology, from Eden Theological Seminary in St. Louis in 2016.
She is in the process of being ordained as a deacon in the United Methodist Church in 2019 and is also active in P.E.O., a women’s organization that supports educational opportunities for women.
“I’m looking forward to serving the employees and patients at Alton Memorial,” Dierker says. “I had known Chaplain Bruce before coming here, and getting a chance to spend time with him and learning has been very helpful.”
AMH has ‘Awesome’ employees
If you know of an AMH employee, physician or volunteer who deserves recognition, let AMH know by completing an “Awesome” form. Forms are available in the hospital waiting areas and at nurses stations. A member of the leadership team will present your honoree with an “Awesome” badge sticker.
Completed forms may be dropped off at the information desk or sent to the development office. For more information, contact Jeanne Truckey, 618-433-6047.
Recent Awesome cards went to:
Finding comfort in crafts
Kristin Wadlow and her daughter, Annalynn Hanna, make a garland during the weekly craft activity for mothers with high-risk pregnancies in the BJH antepartum unit. Wadlow is on the unit awaiting the birth of twin girls. The craft activities are facilitated by Arts + Healthcare coordinator Sarah Colby. | Photo by Mary Williams
Amy Koester named Employee of the Month
Amy Koester, RN, emergency department, was recently named Employee of the Month for PWH.
Koester was recognized for exemplifying the hospital’s expertise service priority. In addition to the certificate and $50 gift card, she is also eligible for the 2018 Employee of the Year award.
Fund-raiser generates more than $500
Team members turned out to support PWH volunteer Ally Nichols, right, helping her raise more than $500 through her “Dancing with the Stars” chili lunch fund-raiser benefiting Independence Center. With Nichols is Hannah Grewach, HR business partner. | Photo by Dawn Kohrt
PWH radiology team makes the holidays bright for kids
PWH radiology team members again outdid themselves by collecting a sleigh full of gifts for foster children at Youth in Need. | Photo by Scott Austermann
Team members donate gifts galore for colleagues in need
Thanks to all employees who chose an ornament from the BJSPH and PWH trees and purchased gifts needed by colleagues and their families. Once again, team members proved their generosity by donating an abundance of gifts at PWH, left, and BJSPH, right. | Photos by Dawn Kohrt
Boy Scouts make donation to PWH
Boy Scout Troop 918 recently stopped by PWH to donate toys for children who were in the hospital over the holidays. One of the scouts received a toy when he was in the hospital during the holidays as a toddler. He and his troop now donate toys to hospitals every holiday season. | Photo by Linda Rohne
Kim Godar and Karen Vaughn win meal kit service
BJSPH’s Kim Godar and PWH’s Karen Vaughn were among the 13 employees across BJC who were rewarded for their health-conscious efforts in November.
In recognition of November as American Diabetes Month, BJC Help for Your Health encouraged all BJC employees to increase their awareness of diabetes risk factors and know their own personal risk. Employees who took a quiz about diabetes and signed a pledge were eligible to win a convenient, Blue Apron meal-kit service featuring healthy menus delivered to home.
Godar was the BJSPH winner, and Vaughn was the winner at PWH.
BJWCH supports Crisis Nursery
BJWCH chose the Saint Louis Crisis Nursery, which provides emergency intervention, respite care and support to families in crisis, as the hospital’s holiday giving recipient.
Employees selected tags from the Giving Tree and contributed more than 400 different kinds of items, including clothing, toys, cleaning supplies, wipes, books and art supplies. The hospital also donated two crib-size mattresses and a Blu-ray DVD player.
From left, Nicole Johnson, patient care technician, and food and nutrition team members Betty Robinson, Marsha Carter and Caitlin Pahl show just a sampling of the many gifts donated by BJWCH employees. | Photo by Kelly Pahl
BJWCH to host Martin Luther King Jr. celebration Jan. 21
BJWCH will hold a Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. commemorative celebration from noon-1 p.m., Jan. 21, in cafeteria conference room D.
Everyone is welcome to hear remarks from Will Ross, MD, Washington University School of Medicine professor of medicine, division of nephrology, and associate dean for diversity.
A video of the acclaimed “I Have A Dream” speech that Dr. King delivered Aug. 28, 1963, also will be shown and cake will be served.
BJWCH employees welcomed patients to 969 Imaging for 22 years
Rosie Chester and Dixie Jarman, patient access, recently retired after welcoming patients to 969 Imaging together for 15 years.
Chester, who has worked 22 years for BJWCH, never had an unplanned absence, according to her manager, Dolores Fumagalli. “Rosie is so dedicated, she would always stay late to take care of patients,” she says.
Jarman worked for BJWCH 15 years, and was unable to attend their Dec. 21 retirement celebration, but will also be missed. “Patients would come in to see Dixie, even when they didn’t have an appointment,” Fumagalli says. “She provided outstanding service.”
As for Chester’s retirement plans, she says she’s “going to do whatever I want” and spend time with her large family.
“It’s bittersweet — everyone’s always been pleasant and I’ve always loved radiology,” she says.
From left, Chris Simone, RN; Dolores Fumagalli; Jamie Heitert; Rosie Chester; Jenna Held; Becky Luebbert; and Alexes Thigpen celebrate Chester’s retirement. | Photo by Kelly Pahl
Street shows the ICARE values
Community support specialist Ebony Street, BJC Behavioral Health-North, showed ICARE values at the BJC Behavioral Health-Central site when she took charge of an emotional situation in the same day access area.
Street helped comfort a co-worker’s client during a difficult intake, making a monumental difference in how the client viewed BJC Behavioral Health and BJC. Street says she “acted on what my heart told me,” helping the client be open to accepting services, trusting and willing to allow help toward recovery.
For this, Street was named service excellence winner at BJC Behavioral Health-North for August.
Personally and professionally, Dintelman comes through
BJC Behavioral Health-South case manager Erika Dintelman demonstrated exceptional compassion and patience with a difficult family situation.
A co-worker says, “Erika is always willing to help and is a constant support for us. She has been giving the rest of the team ‘shout-outs’ when they’re going through difficult times and has been a great listener for me, both personally and professionally.”
Dintelman presents a professional and positive attitude, even when faced with stressful and challenging situations. For this, she was named service excellence winner for August for BJC Behavioral Health-South.
A smile and a positive attitude typify Doss’s care
Community support specialist Tommy Doss, BJC Behavioral Health-Southeast, has a positive outlook on treatment with all of his clients, being the voice of the client when necessary. Doss also accepts challenging cases with a smile and a positive attitude.
He is able to meet clients where they are and talk to them on that level. He has the ability to put clients at ease and re-engage them when others cannot. Doss has the respect of his team and his clients and strives to provide excellent care daily. The Southeast site named Doss the service excellence winner for August.
Losse keeps cool head in emergency
While waiting for EMTs to respond when a co-worker’s client became ill, case manager Meagan Losse, BJC Behavioral Health-Central, immediately took a leadership role in protecting and caring for the client.
While waiting, Losse remained focused on providing first aid for the client. Even before the nurses arrived, Losse was already helping by speaking to the patient and keeping the patient calm. As others arrived, they were able to follow Losse’s lead, helping to protect the client until emergency services arrived.
Losse provided leadership and a calming presence to everyone involved. For this, she was named the August service excellence winner for BJC Behavioral Health-Central.
Sparks makes time for clients and co-workers
Case manager Suzanne Sparks, BJC Behavioral Health-Southeast, is known to her co-workers as an intelligent, caring person who embodies ICARE values on a daily basis. She’s thorough as she meets new clients, reassuring them that they made the right decision to walk through the BJC Behavioral Health door.
Sparks is always positive and makes time for her co-workers, on or off the clock, even delivering a complete homemade meal on a Saturday to a co-worker.
Sparks is respected for her work ethic and is supportive of both clients and co-workers.
Her willingness to give her time and energy wherever needed made her the BJC Behavioral Health-Southeast June service excellence winner.
Corporate Health Services honors employees at year-end banquet
BJC Corporate Health Services held its 2017 Employee Recognition Banquet in November. The event showcased the award-winning teams and individuals from CHS who have contributed to the overall success of the organization.
More than 100 colleagues, business partners and guests attended the event at the Clubhouse at the Norman K. Probstein Golf Course in Forest Park. Guests enjoyed a reception, dinner, photo booth and awards ceremony.
For the first time in CHS history, the Leadership Award was presented to two individuals. Jane Myers, business manager, and Sandy Swan, program manager, occupational health and ergonomics, were recognized for their outstanding contributions and commitment to CHS clients.
“CHS has a dual focus on internal and external clients,” said Patrick Venditti, CHS executive director. “Both Jane and Sandy manage high-performing teams that exceed their clients’ expectations and position CHS for continued success. They are dynamic leaders who take great pride in their teams and their work.”
Client recognition awards were presented to Shelley Penrod, transcriptionist; Wanda Hughes, patient access representative; and Andrea Tobiasz, nurse practitioner. These special awards recognize the individuals who were most frequently mentioned during client satisfaction telephone surveys. In addition, Joseph Klipsch, facilities coordinator, received special recognition for always going “above and beyond” to take care of his colleagues.
Three individuals received awards for living ICARE service values in 2017. They included Aaron Gutjahr, exercise physiologist; Kelly Bini, occupational therapist; and Connie Kopec, EHR analyst. “Demonstrating ICARE values is key to our success in every patient and client encounter,” said Diane Palmer, RN, director of clinical operations. “Our 2017 awardees are being recognized for their commitment to these values and practices.”
“The past year has been a memorable one for CHS,” said Venditti. “We’ve made significant strides in many areas, thanks to our dedicated team of professionals. The Employee Recognition Banquet is our special time to celebrate and recognize the individuals and teams that make CHS a great place to work and receive care.”
Leroy Love named workforce management executive director
Leroy Love has been named BJC shared services workforce management executive director, reporting to John Beatty, BJC senior vice president and chief human resources officer. Love also will retain his St. Louis Children’s Hospital performance improvement director responsibilities.
In his new role, he will help align and strategically support various workforce management efforts underway across BJC that are overseen by the workforce management steering committee.
He’ll also provide strategic support for the BJC-wide improvement effort called Services We Share, as well as for the human resources goal deployment process initiatives.
“I am pleased Leroy accepted this opportunity to expand his role at BJC,” says Beatty. “We are fortunate to have a talent like Leroy in our organization.”
Love joined BJC in 2007 as a performance improvement consultant for SLCH. He became the performance excellence manager and then senior manager in 2009 and was named director in 2011. He received the SLCH Leadership Award in 2012.
Love earned his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Missouri-Columbia and his master’s degree in engineering management from the University of Missouri-Rolla. He is an adjunct faculty member and program director for the Washington University School of Engineering master of health care in operational excellence program.
Trivia supports Wings pediatric program
Do you love trivia? If so, gather a group of friends or co-workers together for Magellan’s 16th annual trivia night benefiting the BJC Hospice pediatric program, Wings. Proceeds from the event will go toward grief and camp programs for children.
Trivia takes place Feb. 24 at the Machinist’s Hall off St. Charles Rock Road. Doors open at 6 p.m.; trivia begins at 7 p.m. Cost is $160 per table or $20 per ticket.
For more information, contact Patti Kasperski, email@example.com or 314-387-5133.
For more information about the Wings program,
Coppelli joins Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
Kimberlee Coppelli, PA-C, a board-certified physician assistant, has joined BJC Medical Group Orthopedics and Sports Medicine. She collaborates with John Stirton, MD, a board-certified orthopedic surgeon in Alton, Illinois.
Coppelli earned her master’s degree in physician assistant studies from Seton Hill University in 2016. A St. Louis native, she has lived in Pennsylvania for the past 10 years, practicing as a cardiothoracic surgery physician assistant in Pittsburgh for the past two years.
“I believe in a patient-provider relationship that allows for shared decision making, so that together we can make a plan to achieve the patient’s goals,” Coppelli says. “I want to see patients regain their mobility so they can lead active lives.”
At BJC Medical Group Orthopedics and Sports Medicine, Coppelli provides treatment for a wide variety of conditions. She discusses diagnoses and treatment options with patients; educates them on preventive care and health maintenance; orders laboratory and diagnostic procedures; orders, prescribes and administers medication, orthotics and other orthopedic devices; performs incisions, wound care, and joint aspirations and injections; and assists Dr. Stirton with orthopedic surgical procedures.
Kimberlee Coppelli, PA-C, is a member of BJC Medical Group and is affiliated with Alton Memorial Hospital. BJC Medical Group Orthopedics and Sports Medicine is at 4 Memorial Drive, Building B, Suite 130, Alton, Illinois, and can be reached at 618-463-7600.
Mudd is new primary care provider
Melissa Mudd, FNP-C, has joined BJC Medical Group at the Highlands as a primary care provider.
Mudd earned her master’s degree in nursing from Maryville University in 2018. She has been a nurse at Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital since 2012.
Mudd chose to practice primary care because she is passionate about promoting adult wellness and seeing people thrive in their health.
“I strive to build interpersonal relationships with my patients and take the extra time to ensure that we have a complete assessment before moving forward,” she says.
At BJC Medical Group at the Highlands, Mudd provides general primary care, including annual wellness exams, care for chronic and acute conditions, disease prevention and management, health promotion, and customized dietary and fitness guidance.
Melissa Mudd, FNP-C, is a member of BJC Medical Group at 1110 Highlands Plaza Drive, Suite 280, St. Louis. For more information about the practice, call 314-273-0195 or visit bjcmedicalgroup.org.
Smith to present at national ACHE Congress
BHC chief nursing officer Monica Smith was chosen to present an innovation plan she developed at the upcoming American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) Congress on Healthcare Leadership.
Smith developed her plan while completing the ACHE Senior Executive Program. This program prepares senior health care leaders for a complex, ever-changing health care environment and inspires them to solve challenges, improve health care and advance the field. The five-month program includes three intensive in-person sessions plus virtual learning activities.
Program participants are required to complete and present a thought-provoking improvement project to be evaluated by other participants. The top three presenters are then invited to present their innovations at the next annual ACHE Congress in Chicago.
Smith’s presentation, describing process improvement changes made in BHC’s emergency department, was the top-ranked presentation in her group.
Case management community clothing closet
Every hour, patients come through the hospital doors for emergency medical attention. Sometimes their clothing is destroyed to complete immediate emergency procedures. Sometimes a patient’s attire may be in poor condition due to hardship.
CH’s goal is to ensure that patients receive excellent care and service during their stay. In the event of clothing being destroyed or unavailable, the case management team has created a clothing donation closet. The closet is designed to help patients in need of basic necessities, as well as ensure their sense of dignity before they leave the hospital. Here’s more about the closet:
The closet is located on the 11th floor, at the east end of the hallway (11-128). The house supervisors have a key to the closet and can be reached at 314-653-5805.
EMS team members honored in 2018
Congratulations to the following CH emergency medical services team members, who were recognized this year:
CH operates the busiest emergency department in the state through both locations, with 109,000 visits in 2017, and has a hospital-based EMS ambulance service that’s one of the busiest EMS providers in the state. With a fleet of 22 advanced life support ambulances and three command vehicles, the ambulance service covers 120 square miles, with 40,000 calls a year for 911 and transport services, demonstrating CH’s commitment to serving and providing quality care to patients in the community.
‘Your Best Medicine’ with Tosha Slaughter
How long have you been at CH/BJC?
I have been at Christian Hospital for almost three years and have always worked in environmental services.
In your job, how do you provide your best medicine to our patients?
The most important thing to me is to smile and have a positive attitude. So, whenever anybody sees my smile or positive attitude, maybe that will change their mood and make them feel a little better, because we don’t know why some patients are here or what they are going through.
What is your favorite thing/or most rewarding about your job?
When the patients say “thank you” because we work hard and we know that they are ill and in the hospital, and we want to provide our best services to them. When they say “thank you” or give positive feedback to management, that makes a big difference and makes you want to keep working harder.
Why do you choose to work at Christian Hospital?
I choose to work at Christian Hospital because of the diversity. Another reason is that we have many opportunities to move up to other departments or advance with schooling through tuition reimbursement. And I live just six minutes away — so, overall, it’s convenient.
Christian Hospital sends best wishes to retirees
Al Duncan, facilities, retired Dec. 20 after 41 years of service.
Linda Fullerton retired from health information management (medical records) in December after 28 years of service.
Evelyn’s House manager named Hospital Hero of the Month
Ann Short, RN, Evelyn’s House manager, was named the most recent Hospital Hero of the Month. Short was nominated by one of her peers through the Missouri Hospital Association for her dedication to BJC’s hospice house, Evelyn’s House.
Here’s an excerpt from Short’s nomination: “Ann is an incredible manager and goes above and beyond for the staff and the patients every day. She is flexible and always willing to listen to my updates on the patients and their needs when considering admission to the hospice house. She is very supportive of her staff and realistic on how many nurses are needed to care adequately for the patients. The feedback from the families has been very positive on how well their loved ones were cared for at the hospice house. Ann is a perfect fit for the job and always very flexible and professional when dealing with all the staff at Missouri Baptist Medical Center.”
“Ann is a very special person. She has a heart of hospitality,” says Stacy Olinger, BJC Home Care Services vice president. “When patients and families come to Evelyn’s House, she makes them feel as if they were at home. She provides the best in end-of-life care and is very deserving of this award. We are all proud of her.”
Ann received a certificate, pin and $100 gift card.
To recognize your own hospital hero, visit http://bit.ly/HeroThankYou.
Ann Short, center, is pictured with Stacy Olinger, RN, MSN, BJC Home Care Services vice president, and Patrick White, MD, BJC Hospice chief medical officer. | Photo by Jessica Mabb
Friends of Wings selected as Schnucks Charity of the Month
The Schnucks supermarket at 6920 Olive Blvd. selected the Friends of Wings as the latest beneficiary of the Schnucks – Bags 4 My Cause Program. For the entire month of April, every time a reusable Giving bag is purchased at this location, Friends of Wings receives $1.
Aligned with BJC Hospice since 2001, Friends of Wings funds and mobilizes people around programs and services that support every moment of the hospice journey and celebrate the love that will never end. Programs are designed to provide moments of normalcy and joy, nurture healing, preserve memories and connect people with others sharing a similar experience — an experience that for most will be the most challenging of their lives. By making these programs possible, Friends of Wings is privileged to have positively impacted the journey for thousands of individuals across the St. Louis region.
Boy Scout builds birdhouses for Evelyn’s House patients and their families
Four tall, bright and colorful birdhouses are spaced evenly across the backyard of Evelyn’s House for residents and their families to enjoy watching birds from the patio of their guest suite.
The birdhouses were built and painted by Cameron Moseley, 17, a boy scout from Troop 641, in Creve Coeur, Mo. Nathan Rain, BJC information services, is his Scoutmaster.
Moseley, a life-ranked scout, built the birdhouses as his Eagle service project. He had to apply for approval for the project from the Boy Scout Council. Once approved, Moseley received donations from BJC and Home Depot to purchase supplies. Doing research, he found that these stand-alone birdhouses, sitting on a matching wooden pole with a solid wooden base, appear heavy enough to withstand usual wind gusts. “I hope Evelyn’s House guests and families get to see a variety of birds,” he says.
Rain’s son, Andrew, 12, helped Moseley with the birdhouses, and Boy Scout committee chair Scott Moseley and his wife helped Cameron transport the birdhouses to Evelyn’s House.
“Cameron did such a wonderful job on the colorful bird houses,” says Ann Short, RN, Evelyn’s House manager. “They are ingenious with a hinged door for easy cleaning. The birdhouses will provide hours of birdwatching enjoyment for our patients and families, and we hope to see some birds nesting soon, as we see quite a few bluebirds in the area.”
From left, Andrew Rain, Scott Moseley, Cameron Moseley, Evelyn’s House manager Ann Short, RN, and Nathan Rain are pictured with the birdhouses Cameron Moseley built and donated to Evelyn’s House. | Photo by Margie Schaffer
Memorial Care Center, social services participate in ‘Be a Santa to a Senior’
MCC staff helped make the holidays brighter for local seniors by participating in “Be a Santa to a Senior,” sponsored by Home Instead, which collects gifts for low-income seniors and seniors who have little family.
Trees at several area locations, such as Fairview Heights City Hall and Bank of Belleville, featured ornaments with the name of a senior and his or her Christmas wish items or needs.
MCC staff sold snacks and donated items and money to purchase gifts for 25 seniors throughout the community. MCC and social services team members then volunteered to help deliver the gifts to seniors at the Lincoln Park Community in O’Fallon and the Cottages at Cathedral in Belleville.
From left, Ashley Stanford, MCC social worker; Lora Schmittling, MCC recreational therapist; and Melissa Pluff, MCC marketing/intake coordinator, prepare “Be a Santa to a Senior” gifts for delivery. | Courtesy photo
Memorial employees celebrate the season by giving
For the past 10 years, several Memorial departments — including radiology, MRI, CT, nuclear medicine, ultrasound, respiratory, sleep lab, lab, PT/OT, pain management and administration/leadership — have collected food, clothing, household items and toys for families in need during the holidays. This year, these departments collected items for four families.
In addition, the emergency department, along with other departments, collected items to fill the “Boo Boo Bus” and donated those items to the Catholic Urban Program, while Family Care Birthing Center team members collected items for the Pregnancy Center of Belleville.
From left, Susan Stubblefield, Heather Cabrera, Pam Holbrook and Laurie Pyles display some of the items collected by employees to help families in need this holiday season. | Courtesy photo
Karpel wins meal kit service
Dana Karpel, MHB radiology, was one of 13 employees across BJC who won a $240 Blue Apron gift certificate for their health-conscious efforts in November.
‘Purse for a Nurse’ raises $1,343
The 2018 Professional Development Council organized a “Purse for a Nurse” fund-raiser to support the Auxiliary Certification and Education Fund.
Employees bought chances to win one of several purses — and the winners are:
The council is grateful to those who donated the purses and those who purchased chances to win. A grand total of $1,343 was raised to support the Auxiliary Certification and Education Fund.
From left, JoAnn Sehr, Dr. Hans Moosa and Brian Ripperda model some of the “Purse for a Nurse” items that raised money for the Auxiliary Certification and Education Fund. | Courtesy photo
Environmental services employees display their tree-decorating talents
Twenty-five EVS employees at MHB participated in a tree decorating contest for the holidays.
Supervisors provided those who wished to participate with a small tree from the Dollar Store — and employees demonstrated their creativity.
The winner of the tree decorating contest — Edna Rowney — was announced Dec. 20. | Courtesy photo
MBMC recognizes PCT professional development program participants
MBMC recognized the first cohort in its new patient care technician professional development (PCT-PD) program Nov. 2 in a celebration at the medical center.
During the celebration, the five participants in the initial cohort shared stories and experiences from their work at MBMC and expressed gratitude for the program. “This was a wonderful experience. I felt so welcomed and supported as a PCT at MoBap,” said Caitlin Stewart, PCT, advanced cardiac care unit.
The PCT-PD program was created to offer non-licensed PCTs an opportunity to excel and advance in their roles. The program recognizes and rewards PCTs who demonstrate clinical excellence and a commitment to quality patient care.
PCTs work closely with patients and families — and recognizing and investing in the development of this role helps retain current PCTs, while also attracting high-quality PCT applicants.
Evidence of excellence is exhibited through exemplars, manager and peer recommendations, involvement in unit- and hospital-level activities, and clinical evaluation. The program recognizes PCTs in three levels, dependent on their level of involvement.
The program will have a biannual application process, with the next in spring 2019.
MBMC recognized the first cohort in its new patient care technician professional development (PCT-PD) program Nov. 2. | Photo by Debra Victor
Hospital Auxiliary purchases equipment for MBSH laboratory
With funds donated by the MBSH Auxiliary, the laboratory team recently purchased a BioHit automated pipettor. Pipettors are generally used to transfer a measured amount of liquid from one container to another.
The equipment will benefit the blood bank, aiding in specimen dilutions, antibody panels and crossmatches, and improving laboratory employees’ ability to perform testing in a timely and productive manner.
“Our sincere thanks go out to the Auxiliary for making this purchase possible,” says Cherie Monzyk, lab manager.
Auxiliary members and laboratory employees are pictured with the lab’s new automated pipettor. | Photo by David Hartwick
Combined support provides new equipment for cardiac rehab
Through the support of the MBSH Auxiliary and the Hospital Ambassadors, the cardiac rehab department purchased new computer hardware and software.
The computer equipment supplied by the Auxiliary works with the software supplied by the Ambassadors to result in improved quality of EKG signals for physicians to review, and turnaround times are improved.
“Our department is extremely grateful to the Auxiliary and Ambassadors for providing this new equipment for us,” says Mike Whitaker, outpatient diagnostic services manager. “We are now able to do a better job in providing enhanced information for our physicians to review, thus improving patient care and satisfaction.”
From left are Freda Haase, Auxiliary president; Brooke Bartolotta, registered nurse; Mike Whitaker, outpatient diagnostic services manager; and Tony Schwarm, MBSH president, with the new cardiac equipment. | Photo by David Hartwick
Auxiliary buys new hampers for Therapy & Wellness Center
The MBSH Auxiliary recently helped purchase new linen hampers for the therapy and wellness department.
“Thanks to the generous donation from the MBSH Auxiliary, therapy and wellness was able to replace our old bins, which were difficult to operate and looked sloppy when the bags were full, with new hampers that don’t rust, keep the soiled linen looking neat in the clinic, and give a fresh, clean, updated feel to the facility,” says Robin Butts, rehab manager.
“We are fortunate to have the support of the Auxiliary to provide much-needed items for various departments,” Butts adds. “Their contributions make a real difference in helping MBSH be the provider of choice in so many different ways, and we truly appreciate their generosity.”
From left, with the new hampers, are Alyssa Heinle, secretary/tech; Auxiliary members Susan Klauser, Ellen Crider, Karen Ryan, Joyce Martin and Bob Martin; Julie Johanning, PTA; and Robin Butts, rehab manager. | Photo by David Hartwick
MBSH announces its 2019 medical staff officers
MBSH has announced its 2019 medical staff officers: Thomas Jackson, MD, will continue to serve as chief of staff, and Alison Baker, MD, will continue in her role as vice chief of staff.
Dr. Jackson, an internist, has worked at MBSH through BJC Medical Group of Sullivan since 2008. He sees patients at the Sullivan Medical Clinic.
Dr. Baker, an ob/gyn, has been with MBSH through BJC Medical Group of Sullivan since 2012. She also sees patients at the Sullivan Medical Clinic.
“We are pleased that both Dr. Jackson and Dr. Baker have accepted the leadership roles of our medical staff again this year. They did an exceptional job in the past, and I’m confident that they will continue to do so,” says Tony Schwarm, MBSH president. “This is a huge commitment, in addition to the excellent care they offer to their patients every day.”
MBSH’s 2019 medical staff officers are Dr. Thomas Jackson, chief of staff, and Dr. Alison Baker, vice chief of staff. | Photo by David Hartwick
MBSH Auxiliary presents $10,011 check for hospital equipment
The MBSH Auxiliary recently made a significant year-end donation to the hospital, helping six MBSH departments that had submitted requests for items not included in their annual capital purchases. Through its donation, the Auxiliary was able to provide the funds to cover most of the requested equipment.
Auxiliary president Freda Haase recently presented a check for $10,011.23 to Tony Schwarm, MBSH president. “We are extremely grateful for the continued generous support provided by our Auxiliary members,” says Schwarm. “They do a tremendous job assisting MBSH in many ways, and for that I am very thankful.”
Tony Schwarm, MBSH president, receives a check from Freda Haase, Auxiliary president. | Photo by David Hartwick
‘PJ’ Williams is Star Service Team Member for December
Patricia ‘PJ’ Williams, RN, has been selected as the ICARE Star Service Team Member for December. Williams, a nurse in the intensive care unit, has worked at PHC and Mineral Area Regional Medical Center for a combined total of seven years.
Excerpts from her nomination read: “She is a wonderful mentor, a caring nurse and a great peer to all of her fellow workers. She will work in any department and treat everyone with the utmost respect. She makes sure that no matter who you are, you know that you are important to her and everyone around.”
Williams says she was excited that her co-workers nominated her for the award.
When asked what she likes about her job, Williams says, “I love the people! It’s my home away from home.”
ICARE, PHC’s patient experience service initiative, stands for the following values: Integrity, Compassion, Accountability, Respect and Excellence.
Patient advocates thank SLCH staff
SLCH had many things to be thankful for this past Thanksgiving — including “partnership.” SLCH family partner program volunteers (patient advocates) visited units to thank physicians and staff. Festivities included games and prizes. | Courtesy photo
Carter, Monroe earn Lifesaver awards
Deanna Carter, RN, 12th floor neurosciences, and Shelley Monroe, pharmacy resident, recently earned Lifesaver awards.
Deanna Carter, second from left, with, from left, clinical leaders Michele Lane, Susan Hibbits and Joan Smith. | Courtesy photos
Shelley Monroe, second from left, with pharmacy team members, from left, Caitlyn Luecke, Cortney Rogers and Daniel Willholt.
Martin Luther King service set for Jan. 21
“Keep Moving: Together We Can Change the World,” a commemorative service honoring the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., will take place at noon, Jan. 21, in the Eric P. Newman Education Center Auditorium. Doors open at 11:30 a.m.
Michael McMillan, president and CEO of the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis Inc., will be the keynote speaker.
For more information, contact Cheryl Palmer, Cheryl.Palmer@bjc.org.
Adopt-a-Family drive helps 50 families
Thank you to everyone at SLCH and BJC who contributed to this year’s Adopt-a-Family drive. Social work coordinates the effort, which benefits patients’ families facing multiple hospitalizations and financial hardships.
Nearly 50 departments and teams donated gifts to an equal number of families.
Children’s Specialty Care Center teams staged a soup kitchen to raise funds for two families in need they adopted. From left are Paul Jenkins, Mary McCrillis and Tom McGowan from therapy, and Erin Barton and Jessica Meadows from surgery. | Courtesy photo
Announcing the new employee giving T-shirt
Employees visited Workplace to vote on a new giving T-shirt color. The heather forest version at right topped burgundy and black versions of the same shirt design.
The circle on the front of the T-shirt relates to the circle of time for SLCH. This year marks the hospital’s 140th anniversary.
Thanks to everyone who voted on Workplace. Details on how to obtain a shirt will be announced in a future issue of Children’s Chat.
United Way bobblehead winner announced
As you may recall, the Joan Magruder bobblehead doll was “kidnapped” and “ransom tickets” were sold to benefit the United Way.
After her safe return, one lucky donor got to keep the bobblehead.
And that winner was ... drum roll, please: Doug Black of Christian Hospital.
Thanks to all who donated this year.
Snowflake Village makes holidays bright for SLCH patients
Child life services and other SLCH team members once again supported Snowflake Village, a four-day, free toy store on the 11th floor for parents and caregivers whose children spent the holidays at SLCH.
Hundreds of parents picked up donated gifts for their kids in the hospital, free of charge.
Snowflake Village once again provided gifts for children hospitalized over the holidays. The free toy store is coordinated by SLCH child life services and staffed by volunteers from throughout SLCH. | Courtesy photo
TRISL team celebrates anniversary with ice cones
In celebration of its one-year anniversary in St. Charles County, TRISL supplied complimentary Kona Ice cones to all employees, visitors, patients and families at BJSPH and PWH July 6.
“We would like to share our gratitude with the community, as well as our business partners at BJC HealthCare, for contributing so much to the success of our first year serving patients with high quality, top notch acute rehabilitation,” says Mark Dwyer, TRISL CEO. “Our team looks forward to many more successful years to come.”
TRISL in St. Charles County has cared for more than 525 patients during its first year in operation.
TRISL admissions team members Angela Jones and Rafael Munoz enjoy Kona ice cones in celebration of TRISL’s one-year anniversary in St. Charles County. | Courtesy photo
Happy 104th birthday, Johnnie
It was an exciting day at VNRC Jan. 18, as Johnnie Rivere celebrated her 104th birthday.
Rivere, a resident at Village North since 2005, lives independently in her own apartment. She loves to smile, sing and talk with people about a variety of subjects. She plays cards and enjoys eating out at restaurants.
She says there’s no secret to being 104, but she does say that she has lived her life treating people the way she would want to be treated.
Village North threw a birthday celebration for Rivere, complete with friends, a piano player playing her favorite songs, balloons, a champagne toast and plenty of cake.
Johnnie Rivere celebrates her 104th birthday at Village North Retirement Community.
| Courtesy photo