Early winter wonderland keeps AMH plant operations team busy
Prospective Thanksgiving turkeys had a chance to hide temporarily under an early November snow a week before the holiday this year. Thanks to the AMH plant operations team for its excellent work in clearing the roads and parking lots around campus Nov. 15. | Photo by Dave Whaley
Wonder Palz for sale at AMH Gift Shop
Wonder Palz stuffed animals are now available in Miss Eunice’s Hat Box. The stuffed animals are the featured merchandise of a company started recently by a St. Louis family.
Each plush character comes with a career uniform and a superhero costume with a cape, along with a story booklet that explains how each character landed his or her job, the necessary schooling, and some other fun facts.
In addition to Wonder Palz, many other great holiday gift items are now for sale in Miss Eunice’s Hat Box.
Trent Bechtold, 6, grandson of Miss Eunice’s Hat Box manager Susie Bechtold, stands by the display of Wonder Palz in the gift shop. | Photo by Dave Whaley
AMH Diabetes Fair draws more than 150 participants
AMH volunteer coordinator Kathleen Turner, foreground, and Judy Jordan, office manager for Family Physicians of Alton and Diabetes & Endocrine Care of Alton (DECA), meet with visitors to the 18th annual AMH Diabetes Fair, Nov. 10, in the Beeby Wing lobby. More than 150 people attended the fair, which included a presentation by Dr. Wael Girgis, an endocrinologist with DECA; health screenings; and a boxed meal from Firehouse Subs. Thanks to all who made the Diabetes Fair successful. | Photo by Dave Whaley
Quiqqle and Sinclair are spa winners
Case management team members Heidi Quiqqle, left, and Stephanie Sinclair each won gift packages to The Face & The Body Spa and Salon for entering BJC’s breast health promotion in October. | Photo by Dave Whaley
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, call Jeanne Truckey, 618-433-6047.
Recent Awesome cards went to:
Marlene Lewis honored for 14 years of service
Retired AMH development officer Marlene Lewis was honored at the Alton Memorial Health Services Foundation annual dinner, Nov. 14, for her 14 years of service to the Foundation.
Paul Lauschke, chairman of the Foundation, and AMH president Dave Braasch presented Lewis with a photo that will be displayed outside the development office on the third floor of the AMH Smith Wing.
Almost 100 people attended the annual dinner, despite a rough weather forecast. John Stirton, MD, an orthopedic surgeon on staff at AMH, was the dinner’s keynote speaker.
Paul Lauschke, left, chairman of the Alton Memorial Health Services Foundation, and AMH president Dave Braasch honor retired AMH development officer Marlene Lewis for her 14 years of service to the Foundation. | Photo by Dave Whaley
BJH conducts decontamination exercise
BJH decontamination team members recently participated in “Operation: Foaming Friday,” a four-hour decontamination exercise designed to test the region’s effectiveness on a large-scale, mass chemical contamination incident.
“Operation: Foaming Friday was conducted to evaluate our region’s ability to deploy a regional decontamination (also known as DECON) asset tent,” says Jason Campbell, BJH emergency preparedness manager. “The exercise verified our effectiveness and successfully demonstrated how we conduct decontamination operations.”
The exercise was intended to provide a learning environment with a realistic scenario requiring coordination among multiple groups. It began with notification of a confirmed contamination at BJH as part of the exercise, and the emergency team was activated. They deployed a large tent in Hudlin Park and began preparations for decontamination.
“Foaming Friday illustrated multidisciplinary teamwork and was a great opportunity for team building,” says Hans Trefny, BJH environmental safety manager. “It involved numerous departments throughout the hospital and external partners, which helped us learn how to better work as a team during potential crisis situations.”
By all accounts, the exercise achieved its desired effect, but not without some learning opportunities.
“This is why we conduct emergency management exercises,” Campbell adds. “It lets us test our decontamination readiness and helps us identify areas for further improvement.”
Departments participating in the exercise included the emergency department, occupational health, patient transport, environmental services, facilities engineering, public safety, groundskeeping, media services and vendors.
BJH emergency department team members Mike Hartwick, patient care tech, left, and Charlie Johnson, assistant nurse manager, perform the decontamination (DECON) process on a mannequin, while wearing personal protective equipment to simulate a real-life response as part of “Operation: Foaming Friday.” | Photo by Kara Price-Shannon
BJH lab teams dress up for Halloween
Laboratory teams at BJH had fun dressing up in costumes to celebrate Halloween this year. | Courtesy photos
Raha Ali makes a comforting connection
Creating a culture of integrity and accountability not only improves effectiveness, it also generates a respectful, enjoyable and life-giving setting in which to work.
— Tom Hanson, PhD, and Birgit Zacher Hanson, MS, MCC
In her job as a housekeeper, Raha Ali sees many patients and families move through BJH. She often witnesses the pain, both physical and emotional, that people are going through. Recently, she was stopped by a woman outside a nursing unit who was there to visit her family member. The woman had been told to come back during visiting hours.
The staff was unaware that the woman had just flown in from out of state and had come straight to the hospital to see her family member. In her frustration, she shared this with Ali, who took it upon herself to tell assistant nurse manager Linda Birney, RN-BC.
“I’m so glad Raha brought this to my attention. It made a big difference to this family member during a difficult time,” says Birney.
Ali gives the credit to her manager, Bill Buol. “I just follow the examples that Bill provides to us — treat all patients and families as if they were your mother, father, brother, sister, etc., and provide the attention and care you would like them to receive. I am so pleased I could help this woman. As human beings, we should help each other, and if we can change something for the better, we should do it.”
BJSPH cardiopulmonary area closed Dec. 4-7
The cardiopulmonary area at BJSPH will be closed Dec. 4-7 while the floor in the rehabilitation room is replaced. The cardiopulmonary area will reopen Dec. 10.
Contact the cardiopulmonary rehabilitation staff with any questions.
Dr. Lannis Hall helps young women learn more about their health
Lannis Hall, MD, MPH, radiation oncology director at Siteman Cancer Center at BJSPH, right, visited high schools in the Hazelwood School District for the young women’s health series called “Go Tell Your Momma.” The series helps young women learn more about their health and how to share health information with their loved ones. With Dr. Hall is Nettie Collins-Hart, superintendent of the Hazelwood School District. | Courtesy photo
BJSPH and PWH spa package winners announced
During October, Breast Health Awareness Month, BJC employees had an opportunity to win spa packages from The Face & The Body Spa and Salon.
The spa package winners at PWH are Diana Eisenbath and Rhonda Samson, and the winners at BJSPH are Katie Campbell and Cathy Vangel.
They completed a quiz and pledge form through BJC Help for Your Health’s breast health initiative, and their names were randomly drawn for a day of complimentary pampering.
The spa package winners at PWH are Diana Eisenbath, left, and Rhonda Samson. | Courtesy photos
The winners at BJSPH are Katie Campbell, left, and Cathy Vangel.
Dash through the snow to the holiday buffet
BJWCH will host its “Dashing Through the Snow” holiday buffet Dec. 7. Stop by the cafeteria for a festive holiday meal from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. or 4-6 p.m.
Employees, physicians and their office staff are welcome to enjoy this annual tradition and festive holiday meal.
What’s a snow day?
BJWCH team members (safely) dashed through the snow Nov. 15 during an early winter storm to ensure care for patients.
Snow can’t keep second floor nurses, from left, Martha Annan Nunoo, RN; Erin Dettman, RN; and Deb Meyer, RN, from taking care of patients. | Photos by Kelly Pahl
Aria Edwards, patient access, left, and Boydvlette Moore, environmental services, provide visitors with a warm welcome when they walk in the front entrance.
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.”
Exline named BJC strategic planning director
Blake Exline has been named BJC strategic planning director. He joined the strategic planning team Nov. 26 and reports to BJC capital and program planning vice president Christy Moore. Exline previously was the senior program manager for Barnes-Jewish Hospital emergency services.
In his new role, Exline will oversee day-to-day strategic planning efforts to help support growth and development across BJC’s hospitals and service organizations by coordinating, completing and delivering detailed analytics, landscape/competitor analysis, and comprehensive business plans.
Exline joined BJC in 2014. In his emergency services leadership role, he managed the team’s financial and operational performance. Additionally, he has worked with BJH administration and Washington University School of Medicine leadership to put multiple strategic initiatives in place, including the “Familiar Faces” program aimed at reducing avoidable emergency department visits.
Exline earned his bachelor’s degree in health management from Saint Louis University and his master’s degree in health administration from Saint Louis University School of Public Health.
Food drive at COH benefits BJC Home Care patients
The turkey hanging near the BJC legal department office is more than just a seasonal decoration. It’s a visible sign of employees’ generosity during a food drive for BJC Home Care patients.
The turkey, made by legal secretary Stephanie Kurtz, went up on the 11th floor of the Center for Outpatient Health without plumage. Employees were encouraged to add feathers to the bird Nov. 5-16 by donating non-perishable and canned food. For every five items they donated, they could pin a feather on the turkey.
By the last day of the drive, 292 items had been collected and the turkey sported a multi-colored feather mantle.
While feathering the turkey was fun, employees were more excited to be able to help BJC patients through the drive.
During a previous food drive, the department donated collected food to a community food pantry, says Kurtz. But when they found out that BJC Home Care keeps a food stock for patients who need help getting nutrition and personal care items after being discharged from the hospital, they decided to support it.
“Sometimes, due to medical limitations, patients may not be able to obtain the items they need when returning home, or sometimes medications can be so expensive that patients are faced with the choice of medicine over food and hygiene items,” says Kurtz. “The stock is totally employee-supported, so we decided to help.”
Janet Staicoff, BJC Home Care, provided a list of suggested foods to make sure donations were healthy and nutritious. Then, employees started donating.
And the more feathers the turkey grew, the more members of the legal department seemed like another symbol of the holidays: the one with a white beard, red suit and generous spirit.
BJC legal team members gave generously during a food drive for BJC Home Care patients. | Courtesy photo
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.
CH Auxiliary named best in state at MHA convention
Drum roll, please. And the winner of the Missouri Hospital Association’s (MHA) 2018 Auxiliary of the Year is ... the Christian Hospital Auxiliary.
The moment was electrifying as Millie Hancock, CH Auxiliary president, and other hospital Auxiliary members accepted the award Nov. 9 at MHA’s annual convention.
CH’s Auxiliary was honored in the large hospital category (300-plus members) in recognition of nearly 46,000 hours of service to the hospital, BJC and the community during the past 12 months. This is the eighth time the CH Auxiliary has received the award in the past 40 years.
The CH Auxiliary operates the hospital gift shop, as well as the Curiosity Shoppe resale shop, located in the Detrick Building on the hospital campus. The group was chartered in 1964 and continues to host numerous fund-raisers throughout the year.
Accepting the award Nov. 9 at the Missouri Hospital Association annual convention, are, from left, seated, Rick Stevens, CH president; Sheryl McClary, CH Auxiliary director; Millie Hancock, CH Auxiliary president; Mary Trice, Auxiliary president-elect; and Necole Powell, CH Foundation executive director; and, standing, auxilians Janet Rector, Linda Rieves, Shirley Hemphill, Lea Creamer, Martie Buck, Johnnie Greenlaw and Valerie White. | Photo Courtesy of Missouri Hospital Association
CHEMS ambulance featured at EMS World Expo
Christian Hospital emergency medical services (CHEMS) crew members attended the 2018 EMS World Expo, Oct. 29-Nov. 2, in Nashville, Tennessee, where a CHEMS ambulance was featured in the Exhibit Hall.
Attendees had an opportunity to look through and inspect the truck layout and functionality. More than 5,700 attendees from over 50 countries were at the Expo, which featured more than 360 exhibitors.
“It was so awesome to walk into a huge convention center with thousands of attendees looking at our very own Christian Hospital EMS ambulance,” says Shannon Watson, CHEMS assistant chief.
CH EMS crew members at the 2018 EMS World Expo included, from left, Paul Reed, Ian Breden, Shannon Watson, Juliet Carapella, John Centerino, Gina Leroux-Wende (kneeling), Gina Pellerito, Katie Eisenbeis and Nick Miller. | Courtesy photo
Patrick Shannon is new CH director of physician services and business development
Patrick Shannon has accepted the position of CH director of physician services and business development. He will begin Dec. 24.
Shannon, who currently serves as BJC strategic planning manager, has been in that role since 2015. He started his career with BJC in 2012 as a senior planning and business development consultant at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. Prior to that, he worked with the Centegra Health System in Illinois.
Shannon earned a bachelor of science degree in health information management and a master of health administration degree from Saint Louis University.
Shannon has helped lead strategic planning efforts at CH over the past several years, and his experience will be important in his new role as CH puts a significant focus on business development.
Christian Hospital veterans honored with special gathering
CH hosted a special Veterans Day breakfast Nov. 9 in the Courtyard Café to recognize employees and volunteers who are U.S. veterans. Activities were held across BJC to recognize those who have provided military service.
The following U.S. military veterans registered for the CH event: John Ford, Cathy Wagner, Thomas Grogg, Micheal Sarabia, James Miller, Donald Lindsey, Tony Conigliaro, Andrew Pitts, Brian Hokamp, Nick Marty, Teddy Pratt, Jackie Meier, Bryan Hartwick, Randall Cheatham, Steven Romack, Dave Lurk, James Noel, Gregory Lattrace, James Lovings, Chris Tate, Mark Keough, James Hendrix, Holly Badgley, Richard Alexander, Joyce Jackson, Michael Pool and James Wilson.
CH hosted a special Veterans Day breakfast Nov. 9 to recognize employees and volunteers who are U.S. veterans. | Photo by Bret Berigan
Lab regional director named
April Madden will join the CH team Dec. 31 as regional director of laboratory services for CH and Alton Memorial Hospital. Madden replaces Cathy Storey, who’s retiring in early 2019 after more than 17 years of service to the organization and more than 46 years of laboratory experience.
Storey will help Madden transition into this role. Look for more information on Storey’s retirement in the new year.
Madden has more than 30 years of laboratory experience and joins CH and AMH from Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, where she served most recently as laboratory director. Madden is a diplomate in laboratory management and has a master’s degree in health administration from Weber State University in Ogden, Utah; a master’s degree in public health from the University of Utah in Salt Lake City; and a bachelor of science degree in medical technology from the University of New Orleans in New Orleans, Louisiana.
CH Foundation announces ‘Heart of a Hero’ Award recipients
The Heart of a Hero program recognizes physicians, nurses, housekeepers, volunteers and other hospital staff who have been nominated by patients and their families. For more information, contact the CH Foundation, 314-653-5162 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congratulations to the following employees, who were recently awarded for their commitment to providing compassionate care and dedication to excellence:
Renee Bonine retires after 40 years of service
Renee Bonine, nursing administrative assistant, retired Nov. 16 after 40 years of service. A retirement reception was held to honor her.
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
Stacia Chamness recognized by Mid America Workforce Investment Board
Stacia Chamness, RN, MHB emergency department nurse, was honored recently by the Mid America Workforce Investment Board (MAWIB), a local workforce development agency.
Chamness received financial assistance from MAWIB as she attended nursing school at Southwestern Illinois College.
MAWIB career specialist Pam Dale says she enjoyed working with Chamness. “She constantly put forward the extra effort toward her training program. She bought study workbooks and other material to make sure she wouldn’t fail the RN program. Stacia would call with excitement in her voice each time she would pass any exams.
“All of her hard work and diligence have certainly paid off,” says Dale. “During the registered nurse capping ceremony, she was asked to be a student speaker.”
Dale reports that Chamness received a standing ovation for her speech.
From left, Linda Robert, Stacia Chamness and Cheryl Roesler celebrate Chamness’ honor from the Mid America Workforce Investment Board. | Photo by Andy Nicholson
Dr. Steven Morton named AOAO president
Steven Morton, DO, an orthopedic surgeon with BJC Medical Group, was sworn in as president of the American Osteopathic Academy of Orthopedics (AOAO), Oct. 19, at the Hilton in Atlanta. He will serve a one-year term.
The AOAO was formed in 1941 and has more than 1,900 members. Each year, members of the AOAO participate as program directors and faculty in the training of 500 osteopathic orthopedic surgeons in 40 different residencies.
Help stuff the ‘Boo Boo Bus’ for the holidays
Memorial’s pediatric specialty team is collecting non-perishable food items and toys this holiday season to donate to the Catholic Urban Program. Donations are being accepted now through Dec. 15 and can be dropped off in the ED break room.
For more information, contact Kellye Mounts, email@example.com or 618-975-8229.
Parish nurses meet regularly at Memorial Hospital Belleville
MHB holds regular meetings for parish nurses. Parish nurses are registered professional nurses who provide holistic nursing services to members of a congregation. It’s an older health care delivery model that’s seen a resurgence.
The Parish Nurse International Organization, along with the ANA and National League of Nursing, have defined parish
Currently there are about 17 parish nurses in the area serving 12 Protestant and five Catholic congregations.
The Metro East Parish Nurse group was formed to give these nurses access to literature, a nursing community and other resources. The group meets the second Monday of each month at MHB for an education-oriented program.
The next parish nurse meeting will be Dec. 10.
For more information about attending an upcoming meeting or becoming a parish nurse, contact Shelly Doerr, RN, cardiac rehab, 618-719-3510.
The November parish nurse meeting addressed grief with “Never Say These Six Things” author Ellen Krohne. | Photo by Andy Nicholson
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
MBSH Ambassadors assist with Backpack Snack Program
The MBSH Ambassadors have scheduled regular meetings to help fill backpacks with food for children in food-insecure homes. Teachers and counselors from the Sullivan elementary and primary schools refer students to the program. Food-filled backpacks are sent home on Fridays to get the children and their families through the weekend, when school lunches aren’t available.
The program began in Sullivan in 2009, when the economy suffered a downturn. It started with 50 students 10 years ago and has risen to about 140 participants. During some winters, up to 175 students are helped through the program.
Grace United Methodist Church coordinates the program, covering the expense of housing the program and acquiring and packing the food. Food bags cost an average of $2.92 each, with a yearly cost of about $105 per child, per school year.
Individuals, churches, businesses and organizations have united to fund and provide the food for the students. One hundred percent of every donation goes to provide the food for the backpacks.
“We are thrilled with the opportunity to help assemble packages and experience this amazing service to our community,” says Lisa Lochner, MBSH vice president of operations.
With completed backpack lunches are, from left, Lisa Lochner, MBSH vice president of operations; Ken Reeves, Ambassador member; Maggie Heidbrink, Ambassador member; Tony Schwarm, MBSH president; and John Rice, Ambassador member, with his wife, Nancy. | Courtesy photo
MBSH purchases portable digital X-ray machine
The MBSH radiology department recently purchased a new portable digital X-ray machine. The new machine allows radiology staff to perform critical X-ray procedures for patients who might not be able to go to the main radiology department.
The new machine allows radiology techs to perform an exam and instantly be able to evaluate the image to ensure all the information needed for the physician is included in the image. The previous portable machine required the tech to return to the radiology department to evaluate the image. The digital X-ray unit also uses a much lower radiation dose compared to traditional X-ray equipment.
“Our staff is extremely excited to have this digital technology. The ability to instantly review the image and the radiation dose reduction are major benefits not only for staff, but also for the customers we serve,” says imaging services manager Travis Little.
X-ray technologists with the new GE Optima 240 are, from left, Coleen Schlueter, Leslie Tripp and Danielle Aberle. | Photo by David Hartwick
Kenny Brewer is Star Service Team Member for October
Kenny Brewer, RN, has been selected as the ICARE Star Service Team Member for October.
Brewer, who’s worked at PHC for two years, works where needed — in intensive care, emergency, geriatric psychiatry and OB — working most frequently as house supervisor in the emergency and intensive care departments.
Excerpts from his nomination read, “Our Star Service Employee for October is a jack of all trades. He works float pool, ICU, supervisor and ER. He always asks if we need anything. He explains his decisions and asks if we have a better idea. He is the type of employee who showcases BJC/PHC in a positive way to his co-workers, patients and families. If asked, he is always willing and ready! He is an awesome co-worker.”
A nurse since 1994, Brewer says connecting with patients and co-workers is the best part of his job. “I have fun,”
he says. “It’s been really good for me and for my family.”
ICARE is PHC’s patient experience service initiative. It stands for Integrity, Compassion, Accountability, Respect and Excellence.
Did you see all the cans that were stacked in the SLCH lobby?
Forty teens with Interfaith Quest, from Hindu, Jewish, Muslim and Christian faiths, gathered at SLCH Oct. 28 to build a mural made of canned goods called CANstruction: “Embracing Diversity.”
Interfaith Quest is a leadership organization for youth of various faith, race and culture backgrounds to gather and participate in service opportunities. SLCH has pursued diversity and inclusion through equal access to quality health care for all patients and families served — which includes a diverse population from more than 80 countries, 42 languages and countless religious affiliations.
“Staff at St. Louis Children’s Hospital embrace diversity by acknowledging cultural characteristics of our patients and their families, which enables us to provide world class care for all regardless of race, ethnicity, language, gender, gender identity, age, socioeconomic class, national origin, mental and physical impairment, sexual orientation, education and religion,” says Greta Todd, SLCH executive director of diversity, inclusion and community affairs. “Ensuring that all people, regardless of their differences, are heard, respected, appreciated and included as part of the culture of our institution is what makes this project with Interfaith Quest such a great opportunity.”
This was the first year SLCH played host to the CANstruction. The mural used the labels printed on individual canned goods, which were meticulously stacked and aligned by the group. CANstruction, which took about five hours to build, was on display in the SLCH first floor lobby Oct. 29-Dec. 1. The cans were then donated to Operation Food Search. Schnucks supported the project by discounting the cost of and delivering the cans on site.
Nearly 3,000 cans made up the “CANstruction: Embracing Diversity” display at SLCH. | Courtesy photo
Leah Buckman earns DAISY Award
Leah Buckman, general medicine, earned a DAISY Award for nursing excellence.
Buckman formed a close bond with a patient and provided the kind of comfort and security that family members would provide.
“Leah provided exceptional service to this patient without being asked,” says Katie Lyon, behavioral health, who nominated Buckman. “In this patient’s time of need, Leah provided support, comfort and a hand to hold.”
Leah Buckman, left, receives her DAISY Award from vice president Peggy Gordin. | Courtesy photo
Nurse earns award from honor society for her leadership
Alla Mink, newborn ICU, received an award from an international honor society of nursing, Sigma Theta Tau. The society presented her with the Janice Hooper Undergraduate Student Award, recognizing Mink for excellent leadership, compassionate care and service.
Mink has been a nurse for more than 22 years. She earned the award for helping students in her RN-to-BSN cohort prior to graduation from Webster University.
One faculty member said, “Alla is generous with her time to other students. She sometimes arrives early or stays after class to mentor other students to success.”
Mink has served as a Russian translator for the Project Restoration Mission for Belarusian children in St. Louis and on a medical mission. Born in Belarus, Mink speaks English and Russian.
“My ‘mentoring’ of other students was rather informal,” Mink says. “Some students joined our cohort later and didn’t have the previous classes. I felt that if I knew something that other students didn’t, I had to share my knowledge to help them out. Occasionally, it was outside of scheduled classroom time.”
Alla Mink, RN, newborn ICU, received a prestigious honor from an international honor society of nursing. | 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