Neurologist Turkewitz Welcomed At SOMC

Jay Turkewitz, MD, a physician specializing in Neurology, has been welcomed to the medical staff of Southern Ohio Medical Center.

Dr. Turkewitz received his medical degree from Boston University School of Medicine in Boston, Mass. He completed a residency in Neurology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, N.Y. He is board certified in Neurology and Electrodiagnostic Medicine.

Dr. Turkewitz joins Dr. Leon Rosenberg, neurologist and can be reached at the SOMC Physician Specialty Associates, 1735 27th St., Waller Building Suite 206, Portsmouth, Ohio, 45662. He will begin seeing patients Feb. 1, 2010. Call (740) 355-9240 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Community Unites to Benefit Breast Cancer Fund

During the next two weeks, Southern Ohio Medical Center will team with Shawnee State University, the Portsmouth Area Arts Council and Portsmouth West High School to host programs geared at creating awareness of breast cancer and raising funds for those receiving treatment.

“We all know someone who has battled breast cancer, which is what makes the disease so personal,” Wendi Waugh, director of the SOMC Cancer Center, said. “It’s a topic that not only impacts our patients, but affects the lives of our whole community. That’s why so many supporters have graciously stepped forward to help our cause.”

SOMC and SSU will kick things off with a “Pink Out!” during the homecoming men’s and women’s basketball games at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 23 at the Rhodes Athletic Center. The first 1,000 attendees will receive a free “Pink Out!” T-shirt.

“Breast cancer is a topic that is important to our employees, faculty members, students and student athletes,” SSU President Rita Rice Morris said. “It is something that is very real, and personal for us, as we’ve had friends, co-workers and family members affected by this disease. Helping to raise awareness is our way of supporting them and their families.”

The public is also invited to an evening of song and celebration during “A Night of Broadway” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 30 at the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts. All proceeds of the evening will benefit the SOMC Breast Cancer Compassion Fund.

“While there are often resources for breast cancer patients, there are still many who have a critical need and fall through the cracks,” Dr. Scarpinato, senior medical director of Surgery at SOMC, said. “Some can’t even afford to travel a few miles to get their treatment. This production will raise money to help those people.”

“A Night of Broadway” will feature vocal selections from both alumni and current Portsmouth West High School students under the direction of Vocal Music Teacher Linda Tieman. Several quality merchandise and event packages also will be available for raffle.

“The students have been working day and night to put this show together and have invested their heart and soul into seeing it succeed,” Tieman said. “They really want to do something for the good of the community and the whole process has been very inspirational for them. We’re honored just to be able to help.”

Dr. Scarpinato explained that he and Tieman partnered to produce last year’s performance of “The Story Goes On,” which raised more than $16,000 for the compassion fund.

“‘The Story Goes On’ was amazingly successful and we hope to top it this time around,” he said. “It’s been such an honor to work with these students and have the support of so many within the community. These projects are truly terrific and we thank everyone who has offered to be a part of them.”

A limited number of seats will be released for the event and are $50 per person for the VIP section, $25 per person for the patron section, and $11 per person for the reserved section. Purchase of a VIP ticket will include invitation to a champagne reception, which will follow in the Howland Recital Hall.

Tickets are available exclusively through the McKinley Box Office and can be purchased by calling 351-3600, visiting the box office between 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday—Friday or going online to

SOMC Safety Leader Elected to OSHRM Board

Leeann L. Sammons, vice president of Health and Safety at Southern Ohio Medical Center, was recently elected to the board of directors of the Ohio Society for Health Care Risk Managers (OSHRM), representing the Central District. OSHRM is an affiliated state chapter of the American Society for Healthcare Risk Managers of the American Hospital Association.

“I’m excited about joining the board. It’s a great opportunity to help the risk management and patient safety professionals in Ohio have a voice,” Sammons said.

Founded in 1978, OSHRM was created to establish a forum for health care risk managers in the state of Ohio. The society’s mission is to promote risk management, which protects human and financial assets in a manner consistent with compassionate, quality and cost-effective health care.

“My duties will include planning a bi-annual education day and furthering patient safety initiatives in health care,” she said. “Bringing back what I learn will benefit patients, employees and the community.”

Sammons will represent Portsmouth and Scioto County with state leaders in dealing with risk management issues. As a board member, she will serve a two-year term.

“As one of our strategic values, physicians, leaders and front line staff are always working to provide exceptional care through safety,” Sammons said. “As an OSHRM board member, I look forward to sharing the success of our organization and giving our employees the recognition they deserve for producing excellent results.”

SOMC Cardiologist Gill Receives Certification

M. Taimoor Gill, M.D., interventional cardiologist at Southern Ohio Medical Center recently received board certification from the American Board of Internal Medicine/Interventional Cardiology.

Dr. Gill received his medical degree from the Allama Iqbal Medical College. He completed his residency in Internal Medicine at Columbia University. He is now board certified in Interventional Cardiology, Cardiovascular Disease, Internal Medicine, and Nuclear Cardiology.

Dr. Gill is in practice with the SOMC Heart and Vascular Associates on the main campus of Southern Ohio Medical Center, Waller Building, Suite 207. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call (740) 356-8772.

Scioto Guild Presents Donation to SOMC

Members of the Scioto Guild (pictured above), a part of the Friends of SOMC, recently presented Kimberlee Richendollar (back right), breast health navigator for the SOMC Cancer Center, a donation of $5,000. The contribution was collected through the guild’s annual Flower Sale, held every May. The funds will go toward SOMC’s Breast Cancer Compassion Fund, which provides assistance to local breast cancer patients.

SOMC Forms Local AMSN Chapter

Southern Ohio Medical Center recently formed a southern Ohio chapter of the Academy of Medical-Surgical Nurses (AMSN). The group will meet quarterly and provide continuing education opportunities at each meeting. Medical surgical nurses in the region are invited to join.

AMSN was founded in 1991 and is the only specialty nursing organization dedicated to the medical-surgical nursing practice. The formation of the southern Ohio AMSN chapter at SOMC started with four officers and has grown to more than 20 members.

“The purpose of the chapter is to recognize medical surgical as a nursing specialty,” Lynn Chamberlin, nurse manager of the Med-Surg Care Unit at SOMC, said. “It’s a wonderful opportunity for nurses to sharpen their skills with continuing education activities.”

Chamberlin explained that members will be given access to an online mentoring program, forums and chat rooms to prepare for med-surg nursing certification exams or to help nurses as they complete schooling.

“The online tools enable members to connect with peers and provides networking opportunities,” she said.

In addition, members will also receive six issues per year of the MEDSURG Nursing journal and MedSurg Matters newsletter as well as 12 issues per year of the MedSurg Nursing Connection e-newsletter. Members will have opportunities to volunteer both regionally and nationally while enhancing their leadership skills.

During the quarterly meetings, discussions will be held on any business needs and the allocation of chapter dues. One benefit of the local southern Ohio chapter is the opportunity to provide scholarships for nursing students.

“I’m very excited about the new AMSN chapter and I look forward to nurses in the community benefiting from this association,” Chamberlin said.

For more information or to join the southern Ohio AMSN chapter, please contact Lynn Chamberlin at (740)-356-8225.

SOMC Held Master Zumba™ Class

Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Portsmouth LIFE Center recently held a master Zumba™ class, taught by master Zumba™ instructor, Nathan Blake from New York (pictured front left). More than 100 attendees braved the bad weather to participate, learning new dances and Zumba™ moves. The event was a fundraiser of the Friends Community Center for the purchase of medical equipment.

Kids Cope Christmas Party

The SOMC Cancer Center recently held a Christmas party for the Kids Cope group (pictured above). Stephanie Craft, a social worker, started the program two years ago for children with family members receiving cancer treatment at SOMC. During the event, Santa visited on his sleigh (provided by Nile Township Fire Department) and participants enjoyed food, games and gift bags provided by employees of the center.

SOMC’s Skaggs Presented at Regional Research Conference

Mary Kate Dilts Skaggs, RN, MSN, NE-BC, director of nursing for SOMC’s Emergency and Outpatient Services and chair of the Nursing Research Committee, recently presented at the 35th annual Nursing Research Conference, held Dec. 4 at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, Ind.

More than 150 nursing colleagues from Ohio, Kentucky, Illinois and Indiana were in attendance, showcasing approximately 30 poster presentations of varying topics. Two posters from Southern Ohio Medical Center were featured and included Reducing Blood Culture Contamination in the Emergency Department and Is There a Santa Clause? Fun Methods to Teach Principals of Nursing.

Fun Methods to Teach Principals of Nursing was also recently published in the October 2009, Volume 39 Issue of the Journal of Nursing Administration.

“It was a privilege to present our research posters at the conference,” Skaggs said. “Conducting research is an integral part of our Magnet status and the results help us to improve quality of care as well as to provide excellent service for our patients and their families.”