March, 2010


Lichtenstein and Moore Present at Wound Healing Conference

Local health care experts from the SOMC Wound Healing Center recently returned from a symposium in Orlando, Fla. where they were briefed by internationally recognized specialists and consulted with peers from around the country on new treatment options and research that may bring additional advances in the care of chronic wounds.

Dr. Sonja Lichtenstein, medical director and Neva Moore, program director, attended the conference which was sponsored by National Healing Corporation, an industry leader which partners with the center and accounts for nearly one-third of all management and outsourced wound centers in the United States.

Lichtenstein made a presentation to medical directors from various national wound healing centers. She discussed ways to improve and build a successful wound center. Moore spoke about recruiting and retaining panel physicians to an audience of program directors and clinical nurse managers.

Located at on the main campus of Southern Ohio Medical Center, in the Rardin building, the SOMC Wound Healing Center offers state-of-the-art methodologies and treatments including the use of vascular studies, tissue culturing and pathology, revascularization, skin grafting and clinical or surgical debridement.

Likely candidates for treatment are those suffering from diabetic ulcers, pressure ulcers, infections, vascular disease, compromised skin grafts and flaps and wounds that haven’t healed within 30 days. For more information, please call (740)-356-8775.

Hope Guild Donates to SOMC

The Hope Guild, part of the friends of Southern Ohio Medical Center, recently donated $10,000 to SOMC Hospice Services. To raise the money, the guild held various fundraisers throughout the year, including book sales and an employee sale at Scioto Shoe Mart. The funds were used to purchase pillows for chairs and other needs of patients and their families. Shown above is the Hospice Center of SOMC.

SOMC to Recognize Certified Nurses Day

March 19, 2010 is Certified Nurses Day, a national day of recognition for certified nurses. Southern Ohio Medical Center will honor its 162 board certified nurses who provide quality care to their patients every day.

The date was specifically chosen as the national day to celebrate because it’s the birthday of Margretta “Gretta” Madden Styles. She is globally known as the “Mother of Nurse Credentialing” and served as the President of the American Nurses Association. A recipient of numerous honors and recognition, Styles is responsible for encouraging board certifications and higher standards of patient care.

“We are very proud of all of our nurses at SOMC,” Valerie DeCamp, director of nursing, said. “On behalf of the organization, it is my pleasure to express the gratitude we feel for the proficiency and leadership our nurses demonstrate when they achieve and maintain national board certification in their nursing specialty.”

Certification, as defined by the American Board of Nursing Specialties (ABNS), is the formal recognition of the specialized knowledge, skills and experience demonstrated by the achievement of standards identified by a nursing specialty to promote optimal health results.

“As a result of nurses acquiring additional certifications, it creates an environment of professionalism and specialized competency,” Karen Walburn, manager of Employment, said. “This special day gives us an opportunity to recognize and encourage nurses to pursue this important step in their careers.”

Nurse certification has been linked to a reduction in medical errors, according to the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN).

Ryan Carpenter, RN, BSN, CEN, SANE, assistant nurse manager of the Health Care Center said, “As a certified nurse, I feel more prepared. I’m more confident in knowing that my skills are up-to-date and that I will have the knowledge and expertise to provide excellent care for my patients.”

“We realize that it takes personal dedication and persistence to achieve and maintain certification,” DeCamp added. “We value their commitment to nursing excellence.”

SOMC Research Highlighted at National Conference

Three nurses from Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Emergency Department recently presented their research poster at the Emergency Nurses Association Leadership Conference in Chicago, Ill. Shown above (l to r) is Jenny Foit, RN, BSN, staff nurse; AJ Foit, RN, BSN, CEN, assistant nurse manager and Jason Ross, RN, CEN, nurse manager.

hree nurses from Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Emergency Department were recently selected to present their research efforts at the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) Leadership Conference held Feb. 18-21 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Chicago, Ill.

AJ Foit, RN, BSN, CEN, assistant nurse manager; Jenny Foit, RN, BSN, staff nurse and Jason Ross, RN, CEN, nurse manager, studied ways to decrease blood culture contamination rates in the emergency department in an effort to improve the quality of patient care at SOMC.

“Attending the conference was a great networking opportunity as well as a chance to see what other hospitals are doing,” Ross said. “We were able to compare our hospital to some of the nation’s most respected facilities and it was plain to see that very good things are happening at SOMC.”

More than 1,000 emergency nurses from across the United States gathered at the conference to discuss trends and topics related to the emergency nursing profession. The poster from SOMC was titled Reducing Blood Culture Contamination Rates in the Emergency Department. This was its second appearance at a national conference.

“It was a privilege to present our research poster at the conference,” AJ Foit said. “Research is an integral part of our Magnet status at SOMC and the results allow us to improve service for our patients and their families.”

SOMC Receives Komen Grant

Southern Ohio Medical Center will continue to offer breast health screening services to uninsured and underinsured women in Scioto, Pike and Lawrence counties, thanks to a grant received from the Columbus Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

“This is the fourth year SOMC has been awarded the grant,” Kimberlee Richendollar, breast health navigator at the Cancer Center, said. “We will receive $69,250 for the 2010-2011 grant year, which is significantly more than last year.”

Richendollar explained that the grant is used to fund a program at the Cancer Center called Hands of Hope. The funds provide free mammograms, as well as other screening services for women in the community. Criteria and eligibility is screened and determined by Richendollar with guidelines set by the grant.

“Women diagnosed with breast cancer at an early stage have much higher survival rates,” Richendollar said. “Unfortunately, not everyone in our community has the financial ability or access to obtain screening services for early detection, which is why the Hands of Hope program is so important.”

The program also provides breast health education to the public through health fairs and screenings. During the 2009-2010 grant year, Hands of Hope was able to provide more than 150 free screening and diagnostic mammograms to local women.

“We are so glad to have the opportunity to partner with Komen Columbus again this year,” she said. “As a result of the grant, the Hands of Hope program provides a great service to our community and we hope it will help the women of our area to become better informed about breast health and the importance of proper screening.”

Susan G. Komen for the Cure is the world’s largest and most progressive network of breast cancer survivors and activists. Since its inception in 1982, the foundation has contributed more than $1.5 billion in funding for global breast cancer research, as well as millions of dollars of support for local education, screening and treatment programs.

To learn more about Hands of Hope and its qualifications, please call Kimberlee Richendollar at (740) 356-PINK (7465).

SOMC named in Best in Ohio list for fifth year in a row

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the Ohio State Council and Best Companies Group recently announced that Southern Ohio Medical Center (SOMC) has again been selected as one of the Best Employers in Ohio. SOMC has been named a Best Employer in Ohio for the past five years.

“We are very proud of the family atmosphere here at SOMC. It resonates in our relationships with one another and with our patients,” said Vicki Noel, vice president of Human Resources at Southern Ohio Medical Center.

The distinction is given based on an evaluation of various workplace attributes including hiring processes, celebrating in the workplace, caring among team members and communication. A majority of the process is weighted by the thoughts and opinions of the employees of SOMC. SOMC was evaluated against various organizations across the state including large corporations and other healthcare organizations.

“This is quite an honor for our organization,” said Randy Arnett, President and CEO of Southern Ohio Medical Center. “It only further proves that SOMC houses some of the best employees in the nation.”

Arnett said the distinction will not only emanate pride to our community through employees, but will also help with recruitment and retention.

“People want to be a part of something great. This distinction, as well as our Magnet Designation, VPP Star Status and our FORTUNE Best Places to Work distinction will be a way to show those seeking employment, that SOMC is the place to be,” he said.

In the next few weeks, SOMC will receive a feedback report and the ranking of the organization based on data accumulated from the evaluation process. The list will be revealed in a special publication produced by Journal Publications Inc., which will be distributed statewide in May 2010.