Yearly Archives: 2010

SOMC Named Healthy WorksitePosted on January 22, 2010

Southern Ohio Medical Center was recently recognized by Healthy Ohio and received the Healthy Worksite Honorable Mention Award.  This award identifies Ohio employers that demonstrate a commitment to employee health by incorporating comprehensive worksite health promotion and wellness programs.

Regina Tipton, wellness specialist at SOMC explained that the award acknowledges efforts of employers in Ohio to facilitate and encourage employee health, enhance productivity and ensure a healthy work environment.

A questionnaire, proof of policies and examples of programs used to encourage better health amongst employees are part of the application process. All worksites in Ohio, large and small, for profit and non-profit have the opportunity to apply for the award.

“SOMC strives to be the example not just to our employees but for other employers and the community,” Tipton said. “We want to encourage a healthy community resulting in our children and their families living long and happy lives.”

SOMC Named a FORTUNE 100 Best Company to Work ForPosted on January 21, 2010

Southern Ohio Medical Center learned today that not only has the organization been named to the FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For list for the third year in a row, but also moved up five spots. The full list and related stories will appear in the Feb. 8 issue of FORTUNE magazine, available on newsstands on Monday, Jan. 25, and now at

“We are truly proud to once again be named to this prestigious list,” said Randy Arnett, President and CEO of Southern Ohio Medical Center. “It continues to confirm that we have excellent employees who love what they do and show it through the care they provide.”

FORTUNE Deputy Managing Editor Hank Gilman says, “The most important considerations for this year’s list were hiring and the ways in which companies are helping their employees weather the recession. All 100 companies on our list are currently hiring, many of the aggressively, leading to more than 96,000 open job positions expected in the next year.”

“We put our employees and patients first in all decision making.” said Vicki Noel, Vice President of Human Resources and Organizational Development, “Staff are actively involved in the organization which helped us maintain a strong workforce while other organizations have been forced to place freezes on retirement programs and hiring or reduce wages during this recession. We have a dedicated staff who are focused on what is best for our patients and one another.”

To pick the 100 Best Companies, FORTUNE partners with the Great Place to Work Institute to conduct the most extensive employee survey in corporate America. Two-thirds of a company’s score is based on the results of the Institute’s Trust Index survey, which is sent to a random sample of employees from each company. The survey asks questions related to their attitudes about the management’s credibility, job satisfaction and camaraderie. The other third of the scoring is based on the company’s responses to the Institute’s Culture Audit, which includes detailed questions about pay and benefit programs and a series of open-ended questions about hiring, communication and diversity.

“I am proud to say that I am a member of the SOMC family. And that is really what we are here – family. You just can’t match what we have and what we provide to our patients anywhere else in the region,” said Christy Aeh, Nurse Manager of ICU.

SOMC to Host Knit for HopePosted on January 21, 2010

Knitters and crocheters of all skill-levels are invited to get-together for an evening of fun, food and to support a good cause as part of the Knit for Hope group at Southern Ohio Medical Center.

The group will meet from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 26 at the SOMC Friends Community Center, 1202 18th Street, Portsmouth, Ohio.

Patterns for lap quilts, throws, shawls, hats and caps will be available, though attendees are asked to bring their own needles and yarn (of any color). Finished products will be donated to breast cancer patients of the SOMC Cancer Center.

For more information, please call the Friends Center at (740) 356-7101.

SOMC Vascular Surgeon Receives High Satisfaction ScoresPosted on January 21, 2010

If you ask Marion Hochstetler, M.D., vascular surgeon at Southern Ohio Medical Center, what he does for a living, he’ll jokingly say, “I’m a human plumber.”

“If a vein or artery is blocked, I go in and remove the blockage,” Hochstetler said. “I spent two years specifically studying artery and vein diseases.”

He was raised on a farm in Orrville, Ohio.  In his free time, he enjoys hunting and spending time with his wife and two children. Hochstetler’s uncle was a physician who taught him a variety of skills and inspired him to become a surgeon.

While only practicing with the Surgery Associates of SOMC for six months, Hochstetler has already made quite an impression on the employees at SOMC, achieving the 99th percentile in the most recent satisfaction survey.

One of Dr. Hochstetler’s patients, Merlyn Cole, 73, from South Webster said, “He is the most wonderful physician. He’s so down to earth and the ‘doc’ explained everything in a way my wife and I could easily understand, which calmed our nerves.”

Dr. Hochstetler literally “plumbed” Cole’s arteries in his legs to relieve blockage created by the build up of cholesterol. Cole used to walk two miles everyday until he began to feel pain in his legs. After correcting his artery blockage, he feels better than he has in years and is thankful for Dr. Hochstetler.

“Dr. Hochstetler is a breath of fresh air,” Sally Berry, RN, CNOR, staff nurse in surgery, said. “He is relaxed with his patients which in turn lowers their anxiety. I wish I was on his surgery team just so I could work with him more often.”

In addition to removing blockage from patients’ legs, Dr. Hochstetler offers a variety of vascular and surgical services. He treats peripheral arterial disease, complex aneurysms, aortic diseases, varicose veins, venous and diabetic ulcers, placement and revision of dialysis access, and the management of neck artery blockage with stenting or open surgical treatment.

One such patient is Mr. Homer Lute, who suffered from severe neck artery blockage. Lute, 73, from McDermott felt short of breath and came to SOMC’s emergency department. During his workup, he was found to have critical neck artery blockage, placing him at high risk for having a stroke.  Dr. Hochstetler performed surgery to remove the blockage and he went home the next day.

“Just before the new year, I had my surgery. Dr. Hochstetler made me feel comfortable and everything went smoothly,” Lute said. “He is a very good doctor and I would recommend him to anyone.”

Cole added,“You won’t find a better doctor anywhere. I’ve been to the big cities for healthcare but the care I’ve received at SOMC is excellent and we are lucky to have Dr. Hochstetler here in Portsmouth.”

Dr. Hochstetler is currently accepting patients and can be reached at the SOMC Surgical Associates, 1735 27th St., Waller Building, Suite 102, Portsmouth, Ohio. Call (740) 353-3562 for more information.

Neurologist Turkewitz Welcomed At SOMCPosted on January 21, 2010

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 FundPosted on January 21, 2010

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 BoardPosted on January 14, 2010

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 CertificationPosted on January 14, 2010

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 SOMCPosted on January 14, 2010

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 ChapterPosted on January 14, 2010

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.

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