July 9, 2014
Star Lake, New York ----- On Tuesday, July 15, 2014, the CEOs of Clifton-Fine Hospital and Samaritan Medical Center will introduce the Clifton-Fine community to their plans to expand and strengthen healthcare services locally as a result of the affiliation that was formalized earlier this year. An open invitation has been extended to the seasonal and year-round residents of the communities served by Clifton-Fine Hospital to attend Town Meetings hosted by the hospitals. Meetings are being held at 12:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Clifton-Fine Community Center, 4208 State Hwy 3, Star Lake. In addition to remarks by Clifton-Fine Hospital CEO Robert Seamon and Samaritan Medical Center CEO Thomas Carman, attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions and provide suggestions about healthcare services available in their community. During the 7 p.m. meeting, the CEOs will be joined by physicians from Samaritan Medical Center who are now providing services in the Clifton-Fine community, or plan to do so in the near future, as a result of the formalized partnership between the two hospitals.
“Our Board first announced its plans to seek a partner facility in late 2012. We subsequently chose SMC and have spent months finalizing the affiliation agreement and planning the expansion of services in and around the Clifton-Fine area,” explains Robert Seamon. “The excitement is palpable throughout Clifton-Fine Hospital – from our Board members and leadership team to our staff, providers, and members of the community who have already experienced the benefits of this partnership. It’s time to share that excitement with all residents of the communities we serve. These Town Meetings are a great opportunity to share our plans and gather suggestions from the people who utilize our services. It’s a relationship that will ensure that Clifton-Fine Hospital is better and stronger long into the future.”
During the meetings, the CEOs will outline Clifton-Fine’s new strategic plan developed as part of the affiliation. The four major focus areas of that plan include: increasing access to care through expansion and awareness of services; investing in the workforce to insure sufficient human capital to meet future community healthcare needs; insuring information technology infrastructure and applications to adequately support patient care and business operations in an era of healthcare reform, and; insuring all quality initiatives add value for patients, drive positive clinical outcomes and provide the means to effectively manage the health of the population.
An early success as a result of the affiliation is the availability of endoscopy services at Clifton-Fine Hospital, which SMC General Surgeon Dr. Eduardo Barayuga began performing in Star Lake in May. Additional new services being explored include cardiac testing, pulmonology, women’s health, ophthalmology, dentistry and telemedicine/telehealth.
For more information about the July 15th Town Meetings, please call Janet Rhodes at Clifton-Fine Hospital (315) 848-4264.
Janet Rhodes, CFH
Krista Kittle, SMC
June 30, 2014
Carthage, New York----- As part of its recovery plan, Carthage Area Hospital has applied to the New
York State Department of Health to become a Critical Access hospital, a change "that will enhance
reimbursement rates and increase revenue for the facility. In order to qualify for Critical Access
status, Carthage Area Hospital is required to meet certain criteria, including proximity of its facilities
to surrounding hospitals being greater than 15 miles. Two of Carthage Area Hospital's primary care
clinics (Evans Mills and Adams) are located within 15 miles and therefore must be transitioned in
order to qualify for the new designation.
The transition includes:
• Closure ofthe Evans Mills Family Health Center- All providers and services will be available
at the Carthage Area Hospital's Family Health Center located at 117 N. Mechanic Street in
Carthage. Patients can continue to receive care at the Carthage location, if they choose to
• Transferring ownership of the Adams Community Health Center to Samaritan Medical
Center- This clinic will remain open in the same location at 10881 NYS Route 11, Adams
with SMC assuming operations effective July 2, 2014.
Carthage Area Hospital hopes to receive Critical Access Designation within the next few weeks.
As announced in late March, Carthage Area Hospital and Samaritan Medical Center plan to form an
affiliation, which is expected to be complete in late 2014 or early 2015. Management and Trustees
from both facilities have been in close discussions to complete due diligence and have begun
developing a strategic plan in preparation for the affiliation. The facilities have engaged KPMG
Healthcare and Life Sciences to lead the strategic planning process with a final report due in late
Natalie Burnham, CAH
Krista Kittle, SMC
Madison Plummer presented a donation of $200 to Samaritan Circle of Hope Cancer Awareness Committee member, Bonnie Trudeau, RN. Madison raised the funds by organizing a student dance for her fellow 5th grade students at South Jefferson School (Wilson Building) in April. She was inspired to hold a fundraiser soon after her mother was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. The Samaritan Circle of Hope Cancer Awareness Fund raises money to improve the health and well-being of cancer patients throughout Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence counties.
Updated on June 12, 2014
All phone issues have been resolved and the system is back to normal.
June 10, 2014
Watertown, New York ----- Some Samaritan Health locations are experiencing intermittent phone issues, including dropped calls, disconnects, and delays in conversations. The Samaritan locations affected include:
• Samaritan Keep Home
• Samaritan Summit Village
• Samaritan Business & Billing Office (Paddock Street)
• Samaritan Medical Plaza, including
o Samaritan Family Health Center in Watertown
o Woman to Woman
o Outpatient Behavioral Health
o Addiction Services
o Graduate Medical Education Clinic
Technicians are working diligently to resolve the issue.
Contact: Krista A. Kittle
News Release #14-012
May 16, 2014
Watertown, New York ----- As part of its National Nurses’ Week celebration activities, Samaritan Medical Center and its Medical Staff hosted a reception and award presentation to recognize outstanding achievements by nursing professionals. Physicians, employees and Trustees from Samaritan were invited to nominate nurses based on their outstanding contributions to the professional practice of nursing in the areas of: Quality and Safety, Education and Mentorship, Leadership, Excellence in Nursing Practice, Innovation and Leading Change, Rookie of the Year, and Lifetime Achievement.
“We have an incredibly gifted, committed, wonderful nursing staff at Samaritan, and National Nurses’ Week seemed like the ideal time to celebrate their service to our patients and residents,” states Dr. Collins Kellogg, Jr., Internal Medicine, SMC Department of Medicine. “As physicians, we work side by side with our nurses and witness their dedication each day. Any opportunity to strengthen fellowship and teamwork among doctors and nurses will ultimately be to the benefit of our patients.”
A total of 52 nurses were nominated for awards in six different categories. Nine nurses were chosen by the selection committee as the 2014 recipients.
The award categories are as follows (award descriptions on next page):
• Education and Mentorship
• Innovation and Leading Change
• Quality and Safety
• Excellence in Nursing Practice (SMC, SKH, SSV, Family Health Centers)
• Rookie of the Year
• Lifetime Achievement
The 2014 recipients were announced at an awards reception on Wednesday, May 7th at Samaritan Summit Village. Please see the following awards and winners on the following page.
2014 Nurse Recognition Award Recipients
• Leadership Award – One who consistently promotes the mission and vision of Samaritan; demonstrates commitment to organizational goals, priorities and strategies; promotes a culture in which employees are positive, challenged and involved; works collaboratively with other departments within the organization, and; positively promotes Samaritan within the community.
Recipient: Wendy Henry, RN, Nurse Manager 5Pratt/4Pratt/Pediatrics
• Education & Mentorship – One who actively shapes and promotes the career of a nurse; participates in mentorship of students or orientation of new graduates, nurses, nursing assistants, and other members of the healthcare team in supporting the provision of exceptional patient care; role models behaviors of exemplary nursing practice in an effort to improve patient care, and; advances own professional development and encourages peers.
Recipient: Sheela Marie, RN, Maternity Services
• Innovation & Leading Change – One who participates in advocacy for change of policy/procedure/standard on an organizational or unit level; introduces innovative ideas in patient care; is viewed as a formal or informal leader by staff; actively participates in the successful implementation of a new program/procedures, and; works collaboratively with other departments within the organization.
Recipient: Laurie Horr, RN, Clinical Nurse Manager, SFHC-Clayton/Cape Vincent
• Quality & Safety – One who leads and encourages shared decision-making when dealing with issues of quality, cost and patients/staff satisfaction; promotes patients and staff safety first in all activities, and; demonstrates a strong sense of inquiry and participates in/promotes evidence-based nursing practice and quality outcomes.
Recipient: Karen Abare, RN, Infection Control Practitioner
• Excellence in Nursing Practice (SMC, SKH, SSV, Family Health Centers) – One who provides direct patient care at least 50% of the time; promotes flexibility and adaptability to situations; provides a positive work environment; serves as a role model to staff; utilizes current research and professional literature in practice; promotes change in the healthcare environment for improvement of healthcare; collaborates with nursing colleagues and other health-related professionals to facilitate quality care, and; promotes a professional image of nursing.
Recipients: Florence Bach, RN, ICU
Emily Bachmann, LPN, SSV 2nd Floor
Madonna Knowles, RN, Interventional Radiology
• Rookie of the Year - Rookie of the Year – One who has entered into practice within the past two years; consistently demonstrates excellence in his/her professional practice as a new nurse; demonstrates responsibility for own professional development, and; displays strong interpersonal relationships and communication skills.
Recipient: Danielle Bell, RN, Emergency Services
• Lifetime Achievement
Recipient: Cheryl Fazio, RN, Director Surgical Services, 30 years
Update on May 29, 2014
More than 150 high school students danced, played games, hooped, and enjoyed performances by local entertainers for 12 hours on April 26 all for an important cause – Children’s Miracle Network of Northern New York. Students from area high schools in grades 7 – 12 fundraised a minimum of $30 to participate in the 12-hour dance marathon, Glowathon, though many students went above and beyond that minimum. An annual event, the Glowathon was put on by the New Visions Class of 2014 as a class project. In total, the students raised more than $10,000 for Children’s Miracle Network locally.
April 25, 2014
Watertown, NY ----- Students in the New Visions Class of 2014 will host the annual 12-Hour Dance Marathon, Glowathon 2014, on Saturday, April 26 from noon to midnight at the Bruce M. Wright Memorial Conference Center. More than 125 students in grades 7 – 12 from area schools will participate in the event, raising money for Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) of Northern New York and honoring sick and injured children helped by the organization by staying awake and on their feet for 12 hours.
Glowathon, which is almost completely student-run, will feature many activities and performances, including dancing, throughout the event. With a glow-in-the-dark theme, the event is sure to be great fun, with special performances by Fire Magick, local musicians and dance groups, glow-in-the-dark face painting, high-energy music, and more. The students who will be attending have raised a minimum of $30 each for CMN.
Glowathon sponsors include the Bruce M. Wright Memorial Conference Center, Northern Credit Union, Fairfield Inn & Suites, and Candlewood Suites, among many supporters.
News Release #14-010
Contact: Morgan Bocciolatt
(315) 785 – 4053
Watertown, New York ----- Samaritan is hosting a Nursing Open House on Monday, April 21st, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. in Conference Room #4 on the fourth floor of the Medical Center. Anyone seeking a career as a Registered Nurse, Licensed Practical Nurse, Certified Nursing Assistant or Unit Clerk is invited to attend.
Managers and staff will be available to answer questions about career opportunities, our facilities, services, and compensation and benefits.
For more information regarding the Open House, contact the Samaritan Medical Center Human Resources Department at 1-800-892-4785.
Contact: Janelle Bossuot
News Release #14-009
April 9, 2014
Watertown, New York ----- Dr. Kevin Biglan, a published expert and researcher in the field of Parkinson disease, will be speaking on Saturday, April 12th from 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. at Samaritan Summit Village. The event is free and open to the public.
Dr. Biglan is an Associate Professor of Neurology and the Associate Chair for Clinical Research in the Department of Neurology at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in Rochester, New York. He also serves as Director of the National Parkinson Foundation Center of Excellence and Director of the Huntington Disease Society of America Center of Excellence at the University of Rochester.
Since 2007, Dr. Biglan has been actively involved in the development of telemedicine for the provision of care in patients with Parkinson disease. Over the last six years, he has established a telemedicine network centered at the University of Rochester with two spoke sites located at the long-term care facilities at the Presbyterian Home in New Harford and at the Susquehanna Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Johnson City. He has been at the forefront of establishing the feasibility of telemedicine in Parkinson disease and Huntington disease, the expansion of its use for clinical care, and the validation of clinical trial outcomes assessed via telemedicine.
Telemedicine offers a unique opportunity for senior care in the community and is something that Samaritan’s Vice President of Long-Term Care Services sees as a benefit for Residents in Samaritan’s two nursing homes. “Telemedicine capabilities will make available a level of expertise in these movement disorders that otherwise would not be available without long distance travel,” explains Tony Joseph. “After having worked closely with Dr. Biglan in the past, I’ve seen first-hand how this can benefit our Residents. It is a service we are working diligently to implement here in Watertown.”
Dr. Biglan’s current research interests focus on identifying clinical phenotypes in pre-manifest Huntington’s disease, identifying disease modifying therapies in Huntington’s disease and Parkinson’s disease and enhancing the delivery of care to patients with chronic neurodegenerative disorders.
For more information about Dr. Biglan’s presentation, please call Samaritan Summit Village at 785- 4422.
News Release #14-008
March 26, 2014
Watertown, New York ----- Carthage Area Hospital and Samaritan Medical Center today announced plans to form an affiliation.
Leadership and Boards of Carthage Area Hospital and Samaritan Medical Center, in consultation with the New York State Department of Health, have been in discussions about how Samaritan Medical Center could assist Carthage Area Hospital to stabilize its finances, as well as to create a collaborative partnership to enhance the healthcare delivery system for the region.
These discussions have resulted in Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Samaritan Medical Center and Carthage Area Hospital, which establishes a contractual relationship between the two organizations that will ultimately result in a formal affiliation. To finalize the affiliation, Samaritan Medical Center and Carthage Area Hospital will move forward to complete the required due diligence and Certificate of Need process.
“Our management teams will work closely together over the next several months to explore options and to identify strategies to enhance the long-term viability of Carthage Area Hospital and healthcare in the region,” explains Adil Ameer, Carthage Area Hospital Strategic Advisor/Interim CEO.
“Both organizations play crucial roles in the community in terms of access to healthcare services and economic impact,” states Thomas H. Carman, President and CEO of Samaritan Medical Center. “It is critical to the entire North Country that we work together to develop a long-term solution for a sustainable healthcare system throughout the region. This is the first step to accomplishing that goal.”
One leadership change will occur at Carthage Area Hospital. Adil Ameer will step down from his role as Interim CEO at Carthage Area Hospital and will serve in a consultative capacity, effective Monday, March 31, 2014. That role will remain unfilled until the formal affiliation is finalized.
News Release #14-008
Contact: Natalie Burnham, CAH
Krista Kittle, SMC
March 25, 2014
Watertown, New York -----The Sleep Disorders Center of Northern New York at Samaritan Medical Center has been re-accredited for another five years by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM). The AASM accreditation is the gold standard by which the medical community and public can evaluate the services provided by a sleep center. Currently, only one percent of all sleep labs located in the United States is accredited.
“We are the only accredited sleep center in the tri-county area,” states Dr. David Rechlin, Sleep Center Medical Director. “We are a sleep center, not just a sleep lab. Sleep centers provide ongoing care of patients with all sleep disorders, while sleep labs provide only testing for patients with sleep disordered breathing,” he added.
All sleep centers are required to have one registered polysomnographic technologist (RPSGT) on staff. SMC currently has three, which allows coverage both day and night.
Numerous sleep disorders exist including obstructive sleep apnea, restless leg syndrome, narcolepsy, insomnia, and central sleep apnea. Untreated sleep disorders can lead to heart attacks, impotence, stroke, and even death. Some studies suggest 40 percent of adults in the United States have some type of sleep disorder. Even snoring is a warning sign of a sleep disorder. Many people do not realize they have a sleep disorder unless brought to their attention by a spouse or significant other. It is estimated of the ten million with sleep apnea alone, 90 percent are undiagnosed and only about one percent are seen by a physician.
SMC currently tests up to six patients per night, seven days a week. If you believe you or a loved one might have a sleep disorder, discuss with your physician.
For more information about sleep disorders, please call the Sleep Disorders Center at 315-786-4930 or visit our Sleep Disorders Center web page.
News Release #14-007
Contact: Janelle Bossuot