The Florida Hospital Association (FHA) has given Lakeland Regional Medical Center (LRMC) its Innovation of the Year in Patient Care Award. The award was bestowed in recognition of LRMC’s Emergency Department, which has reduced wait times, enhanced safety, and improved patient experiences.
“We are very pleased to receive this distinction from our peers at the Florida Hospital Association,” says Dr. Mack Reavis, chief medical officer of Lakeland Regional Health System (LRHS) and LRMC president. “The need for increased efficiency in our high-volume Emergency Department led to a complete re-thinking of the way care was offered.” The award recognizes hospitals and health systems that have adopted new methods for delivering patient care. It was given in October at FHA’s annual meeting.
LRHS is a not-for-profit, community-based organization serving a wide range of health care needs in Polk County and the surrounding areas.
In other area medical news:
* Bond Clinic
Dr. Octavio Cosme, a board-certified interventional cardiologist, has joined the Winter Haven-based Bond Clinic. He earned his medical degree from San Juan Bautista School of Medicine in Caguas, Puerto Rico. He completed a Cardiology Fellowship at St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Staten Island, NY, and an Interventional Cardiology Fellowship at University of Florida Health Science Center in Gainesville.
The clinic held its 11th Annual Diabetes Health Fair on October 25. It included diabetes screenings and “real life” tips about managing the disease.
* Heart of Florida Regional Medical Center
Dr. Aftab Khan, an internal medicine physician, assumed presidency of the Heart of Florida Regional Medical Center (HOFRMC) medical staff on November 1. He was chosen by his peers to replace Dr. Claudio Manubens, a cardiovascular physician.
Also selected were Dr. Mark Alkass, an obstetrician/gynecologist, vice president/president-elect/peer review chairman; Dr. Mark Tran, secretary/credentials chairman/finance committee chairman; Dr. Joseph Ameh, Medicine Department chairman; Dr. Geoffrey Stewart, Surgery Department chairman; Dr. Michael McHale, executive medical committee, member at large; and Dr. Kulmeet Kundlas, executive medical committee, member at large.
The two-year appointments were made at the general medical staff meeting in October.
* Lake Wales Medical Center
Sherry Esmond, a laboratory medical technologist, was named September’s Employee of the Month for LWMC. She has been employed at the hospital since June 2012.
* Watson Clinic
Watson Clinic’s Urgent Care department has expanded hours of operation, effective November 3, to make it more convenient for patients two and up to receive walk-in care for minor illnesses, injuries, and medical emergencies. The facility, with an entrance on the west side of the Main Clinic at 1600 Lakeland Hills Blvd., Lakeland, is open 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. weekdays, and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The department is fully staffed by a board-certified team of physicians and offers a full range of diagnostic capabilities. Urgent Care is open to both existing patients and first-time visitors.
Dr. Richard A. Dudrak, II, an urgent care specialist, has joined the Urgent Care staff, and is providing walk-in care for minor illnesses and injuries. A Polk County Medical Association (PCMA) member, he earned his medical degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in Rochester, NY, where he did his internship and residency in family medicine. He is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine.
Also joining the clinic staff is Dr. Catherine B. Marcum, a board-certified dermatologist, who is offering skin care at Watson Clinic’s South location at 1033 North Parkway Frontage Road, Lakeland. Her areas of expertise include medical and cosmetic dermatology, and services like skin biopsies, skin/cutaneous surgery, chemical peels, Botox, and other dermal filler injectables. A PCMA member, Dr. Marcum received her medical degree from the University of Louisville School of Medicine in Louisville, KY. She did her residency at the University of South Florida in Tampa and most recently practiced in Brandon.
Dr. Marvin R. McBride, Jr. has joined the team of Watson Clinic hospitalists serving inpatients at LRMC. A PCMA member, Dr. McBride earned his medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis, IN, and did his internship and residency in family medicine at Ball Memorial Hospital in Muncie, IN. He is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine.
Program for Employee Excellence and Recognition (PEER) Award winners are Mindy Tait, a senior administrative assistant with Watson Clinic’s Center for Research, September; and Rosa Hughes, a medical coder in Patient Financial Services, October.
The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) has given the clinic’s North Pediatrics location at 1430 Lakeland Hills Boulevard, Lakeland a Level 3 recognition as a Patient Centered Medical Home. This is the highest honor a facility can receive from NCQA, a non-profit organization devoted to improving health care quality. This brings to six the number of Watson Clinic locations deemed a Patient Centered Medical Home by NCQA. The other locations include the Main Clinic, Bartow, Lakeland Highlands, South, and Plant City.
Meanwhile, Watson’s Radiology Department now has the most advanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology available— the Siemens Skyra 3 Tesla machine. The machine produces detailed images faster, leading to a more accurate diagnosis. Its “open bore” design is more comfortable for patients.
Dr. Rossana Escobar-Klapprott, a family medicine specialist, has been tapped to participate in the Leadership Lakeland XXXII class. The leadership program led by the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce involves 30 business professionals annually. Jennifer Baker, Watson’s marketing and public relations coordinator, has been chosen to participate in this year’s Leadership Bartow class.
The clinic received the 2014 Champions Cup Service/Professional Business of the Year Award from the Bartow Chamber of Commerce in October. The award recognized the team in Bartow for positive contributions in the area.
It was given an Optum award from United Healthcare for excellence in documenting and following up treatment for United’s Medicare Advantage members. Watson was singled out as the highest performing provider out of 30 recognized in Florida.
Kimberly Downs, a tenured analyst in the clinic’s Continuous Improvement Department, has been recognized as a Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality (CPHQ) by the National Association for Healthcare Quality (NAHQ). The certification is given for exceptional competency in leadership, data analysis, patient safety, and risk and information management.
The clinic’s Sleep Disorders Center earned reaccreditation for its American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) program. The center is at the Main Clinic.
Its annual Breast Cancer Awareness Luncheon in October, sponsored with Moffitt Cancer Center, drew hundreds to the Lakeland Yacht and Country Club. As part of Breast Reconstruction Awareness Day, clinic plastic surgeons shared about how a patient’s breast can be saved. Less than a quarter of women who undergo a mastectomy in the United States are told about breast reconstruction options.
And the renowned Ice Bucket Challenge to raise funds for victims of Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), has a surprising tie to the clinic family. Dr. Richard Frates, a pediatrician, and Dr. Mary Frates, an optometrist, both with Lakeland offices, are cousins to Pete Frates, the athlete who started the challenge after receiving the diagnosis. More information is available at petefrates.com and alsa.org.
story by CHERYL ROGERS