News & Events (76)

The Samaritan Auxiliary purchased state-of-the art medical equipment called the Arctic Sun Temperature Management System for Samaritan Medical Center, with monies raised from their signature event, One Night, One Diamond, held in March of 2014 - a donation of $42,563 was made to purchase this equipment. The Arctic Sun has been utilized in Samaritan Medical Center’s Emergency Department (ED) and Intensive Care Unit (ICU) since 2010, but due to the frequency of use, SMC identified the need for a second unit and the Auxiliary was pleased to fund this initiative.

The Arctic Sun is a non-invasive temperature management system which can cool the body’s core temperature to as low as 33 degrees. In the case of a cardiac arrest or stroke, lowering the body temperature can help to slow the metabolism which leads to positive outcomes and less risk of brain injury. The equipment circulates chilled water through pads that are adhered to the patient’s skin. The Samaritan Auxiliary is pleased to be able to support our patients with life-saving equipment. In the right-hand picture is Dr. David Rechlin (Pulmonology Associates), Renee Waterbury (Samaritan Auxiliary Board President) and Mr. Tom Carman (Samaritan President & CEO). The center picture is Dr. Maja Lundborg-Gray (North Country Emergency Medical Consultants), Kim Smith (Nurse Manager of the ICU) and Jane Schmitt (Volunteer Services) and the right-hand picture is a picture of the equipment.

November 12, 2014

Cape Vincent, NY — The Samaritan Family Health Center at Cape Vincent wants you to stay healthy this flu season. That’s why the Family Health Center is offering an adult Flu Shot Clinic on Wednesday, November 26th from 9:00 am until 3:00 pm. Appointments are not needed, and you do not need to be an established patient at the Samaritan Family Health Center at Cape Vincent to receive a flu shot. Your insurance will be billed for this service.

Seasonal flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and lungs. It spreads from person-to-person and can cause mild to severe illness. Seasonal flu symptoms may include fever, coughing, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, headaches, body aches, chills and fatigue.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends a yearly seasonal flu vaccine as the first and most important step in protecting yourself against seasonal flu. The flu vaccine is updated every year to combat the flu viruses that research indicates are most likely to cause illness during the upcoming season.

The CDC recommends seasonal flu shots for everyone six months and older. The annual flu vaccine is particularly important for those who are most likely to develop serious and potentially fatal complications from the flu, including anyone 65 or older; people with medical conditions, such as asthma, diabetes and chronic lung disease; pregnant women; and those who live with or provide care for these individuals. There are also some people who should not get a flu vaccine without first consulting a physician. They include: people who have a severe allergy to eggs; people who have previously had a severe reaction to an influenza vaccination; and people who developed Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) within six weeks of getting an influenza vaccine. In addition, people who have a moderate-to-severe illness should wait until they recover to have the flu shot.

For more information on the Flu Shot Clinic, please contact the Samaritan Family Health Center at Cape Vincent at 315-654-2530.

Watertown, NY ----- During the annual three-day Radiothon, presented by Community Broadcasters, hosts Johnny Spezzano, The Border 106.7, and Lance Hale, 94 Rock, raised a grand total of $129,518 for Children’s Miracle Network of Northern New York. Every dollar raised will help children and families facing a medical crisis in Jefferson, St. Lawrence, and Lewis counties.

Each year, the Radiothon provides a unique opportunity to share the stories of many families in our community and how they have been helped by the funds raised through Children’s Miracle Network. Radio reaches listeners in a direct way allowing them to understand the challenges that so many of our neighbors face. Throughout the Radiothon broadcast, the hosts conduct on-air interviews with local families, play recorded interview montages, and educate listeners about Children’s Miracle Network. The majority of funds raised during this event are raised $10 or $20 at a time. “Over the course of the three days, it becomes very evident that the North Country is incredibly giving and the event as a whole brings members of our community together to make a difference,” says host Johnny Spezzano.

Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals is a non-profit organization that raises money and awareness for its 170 member hospitals, including Samaritan Medical Center. All contributions to Children’s Miracle Network of Northern New York at Samaritan benefit children in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties by helping to purchase medical equipment for Samaritan and other hospitals located in the tri-county region. In addition, Children’s Miracle Network of Northern New York at Samaritan is one of only five hospitals that provide direct assistance to families with children in a medical crisis. For more information, contact the Children’s Miracle Network office at 785-4053.

Contact:
Morgan Bocciolatt
(315) 785-4053

October 29, 2014

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month and to help bring awareness of this disease to a heightened level, Samaritan Medical Center and the Samaritan Circle of Hope Cancer Awareness Committee will host a second annual “Shine a Light on Lung Cancer” event on November 6th. Any community member who has been touched by lung cancer is invited to attend this free event, which will be held at 5:30 p.m. in the Samaritan Healing Garden Rotunda.

“Shine a Light on Lung Cancer” is part of a national campaign sponsored by the Lung Cancer Alliance. This year more than 200 communities across the country will participate in the event, which is designed to provide hope, support and compassion to the thousands who are diagnosed with lung cancer.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States and in New York. It takes the lives of twice as many women as breast cancer and three times as many men as prostate cancer. While a history of smoking is the main risk factor for developing lung cancer, nearly 80% of those diagnosed today have never smoked or are former smokers who quit decades ago.

Early detection is the best hope for fighting lung cancer. However, because lung cancer has no symptoms in its early stages, more than 85% of people who are diagnosed today are diagnosed in a late stage, after symptoms occur and when there is very little chance of a cure. Recent studies have proven however that a low-dose computed tomography (CT) scan can find 85% of lung cancers in their earliest, most curable stage. Samaritan Medical Center offers this service to people at high risk for lung cancer through its Early Detection Lung Cancer Screening Program.

The Samaritan Shine a Light on Lung Cancer event will feature Bonnie Trudeau, RN, Samaritan Oncology Nurse Navigator and Early Lung Cancer Screening Program Coordinator, as emcee. Dr. Rory Sears, a pulmonologist with Pulmonary Associates in Watertown, will be the guest speaker for the evening.

About the Samaritan Circle of Hope Cancer Awareness Committee
The Samaritan Circle of Hope Cancer Awareness Committee raises awareness and funds to help to improve the health and well-being of all cancer patients throughout Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence counties.

About Lung Cancer Alliance
Lung Cancer Alliance, www.lungcanceralliance.org, is committed to ending injustice and saving lives through an alliance of advocacy, education and support. LCA provides live, professional support, referral and information services for patients, their loved ones and those at risk for lung cancer; conducts national awareness campaigns; and advocates for multiple millions in public health dollars for lung cancer research.

Contact:
Leslie DiStefano, SMC
(315) 779-6675

October 10, 2014

Samaritan Medical Center is pleased to announce that its radiation oncology program has received a three-year accreditation from the American College of Radiology (ACR). Samaritan is the only hospital in Jefferson County with an ACR-accredited radiation oncology program, and one of only two hospitals in the North Country.

Radiation oncology (radiation therapy) is the careful use of high energy x-rays to treat cancer. Radiation therapy affects cancer cells only in the treated area and is sometimes used in combination with other cancer treatments, including surgery and/or chemotherapy.

"Samaritan is dedicated to providing the highest level of patient-centered medical care for our community,” states Randy Fipps, Assistant Vice President, Operations and Behavioral Health Services for Samaritan Medical Center. “We’re proud to be recognized by the ACR. This accomplishment truly reflects the hard work and devotion to excellence in cancer care demonstrated by our entire team in radiation oncology.”

In order to receive this ACR accreditation, Samaritan’s personnel, equipment, treatment planning and treatment records, as well as patient safety policies, quality control procedures and quality assurance activities underwent a rigorous on-site peer-review evaluation by a board-certified radiation oncologist and a medical physicist, both of whom are experts in the field.

The ACR is the nation’s oldest and most widely accepted radiation oncology accrediting body, with nearly 500 accredited sites, and 25 years of accreditation experience. The ACR seal of accreditation represents the highest level of quality and patient safety.

Daniel S. DeBlasio, MD, a board-certified radiation oncologist on staff at Samaritan Medical Center, says it is important for patients to understand that they are receiving the best cancer care possible. “With a cancer diagnosis, being able to receive care locally is an integral part of the healing process,” says Dr. DeBlasio. “It reduces stress on the patient, as well as on family members and friends who are providing support. For our patients and our community, this recognition by the ACR provides confirmation of the excellent services we provide at Samaritan. It also gives our patients that extra measure of security and confidence that they are receiving the best cancer care right here, close to home. Our patients can be assured that they are receiving the same level of high quality care they would expect from a larger academic facility, but locally, surrounded by the compassionate encouragement of their family and friends. It’s the best possible scenario.”

October 8, 2014

Watertown, New York ----- Samaritan Medical Center is pleased to announce that it has entered into a partnership with the Watertown Wolves and is now the Federal Hockey League (FHL) team’s official hospital.

Samaritan physician assistants will work alongside the Watertown Wolves players during all home games, providing rinkside care for any injuries that occur. Hockey is a fast-paced, hard-hitting, collision sport. Players risk injury from high-impact collisions with each other, the rigid boards that mark the boundary of the playing surface, the ice itself and the goal posts. Skate blades, sticks and fast traveling pucks are also part of the mix. Common injuries that often happen during games include sprains and strains, cuts and lacerations, and bruises and contusions. More serious injuries, such as fractures, dislocations, ligament tears and concussions, can also occur.

The Samaritan physician assistants who will be working with the Wolves throughout their 2014-15 season include: Caleb Richter, Kent Natapraya, Steve Tiernan and Jon Jerome. Richter, Natapraya and Tiernan all work at the Samaritan Urgent Care Clinic in LeRay, while Jerome is part of the staff at the Samaritan Family Health Center at Adams.

“Samaritan is happy to welcome the Wolves to Watertown and proud to serve as their official hospital,” says Randy Fipps, Assistant Vice President, Operations and Behavioral Health Services for Samaritan Medical Center. “Our organizations share a similar passion for and commitment to this community, which is what makes this relationship a great fit. We’re looking forward to some exhilarating hockey, as well as the opportunity to keep Watertown’s new home team fit and competitive.”

“The Wolves are excited to partner with Samaritan Medical Center, who we know will provide top-notch care to our players,” said Wolves co-owner Dr. Michael Wainberg. “We’re very pleased that Samaritan has stepped up to support our community’s team. This type of collaboration will help the Wolves capture the Commissioner’s Cup for 2014-15.”

The Wolves kick off their season with a home game on Friday, October 17th at the Watertown Municipal Arena at the Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds, off Coffeen Street. For more information, visit the team website – watertownwolves.net.

Contact: Krista Kittle, SMC
(315) 785-4504

October 2, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contacts:
Ian Grant, FDRHPO Rural Health Program Manager
(315)755-2020 ext. 36 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Local health departments, hospitals and community based organizations are working together to improve the health of our community. They want to learn more about the health needs and access-to-care issues affecting our region. Residents of Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence Counties are therefore being asked to complete a 10-minute online health needs survey between October 1st and October 14th. The responses will inform a state-level project to redesign the healthcare system and ensure that we are meeting the needs of our community.

You may access the survey by visiting this link -https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/NorthCountryHealthSurvey - or fin the survey on www.newzjunky.com, and on the North Country Health Compass Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/NorthCountryHealthCompass). Your participation is voluntary and your responses will be kept private. When the survey is completed, results will be available on the North Country Health Compass website (www.ncnyHealthCompass.org). Please direct any questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Thank you for your time and support to help make local healthcare better.

Stephanie PetersWatertown, New York ----- Samaritan Medical Center’s annual Breast Cancer Awareness Dinner will be held Thursday, October 16th at the Hilton Garden Inn at 1290 Arsenal Street in Watertown.  Informational and vendor booths will open at 4:30 p.m., followed by dinner and entertainment at 6:30 p.m.  Cost is $30 per person.  Seating for the event is limited, and reservations are required by October 1st.  Tickets may be purchased online at samaritanhealth.com/bcd. 

Along with some kinds of skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common kind of cancer in women in the United States, no matter your race or ethnicity.  It is the second most common cause of death from cancer among women, after lung cancer.  About 1 in 8 women born today in the United States will get breast cancer at some point.  The good news is that many women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early. A mammogram – the screening test for breast cancer – can help find breast cancer early when it’s easier to treat.

Each year, Samaritan hosts its Breast Cancer Awareness Dinner as an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer.  The dinner gives the community the chance to come together to learn more about this deadly disease, celebrate life for those who have conquered it, and honor those individuals who have lost their battle. 

The theme of this year’s event is “Hammer Out Cancer”.  General Surgeon Dr. Robert Kimball will serve as emcee for the evening, with comedian Stephanie Peters providing entertainment following the dinner. 

Ms. Peters, who also entertained guests at Samaritan’s 2012 Breast Cancer Awareness dinner, has performed in numerous comedy clubs across the country.  She has been featured on The View, Access Hollywood, the HBO documentary “When Standup Stood Out”, and in “Comedy Food Segments” on FOX NEWS.  Ms. Peters has shared the stage with numerous comic legends, including the late Joan Rivers, Denis Leary, Caroline Rhea and Joy Behar to name just a few.  She is also an avid supporter of breast cancer awareness, as two of her family members are breast cancer survivors. 

The money raised by the Hammer Out Cancer Breast Cancer Awareness dinner will go to support the Samaritan Circle of Hope Cancer Awareness Fund. This fund allocates money to improve the health and well-being of cancer patients throughout Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence Counties.

For more information, please visit samaritanhealth.com/bcd or call 315-785-4584.

Watertown, New York ----- Get behind the controls of the technology that is changing the experience of surgery with less pain, less scarring, a reduced risk of complications, and a faster recovery for patients. Samaritan Medical Center is providing community members with an exciting and unique opportunity to “test drive” the da Vinci robotic surgical system.

On Saturday, September 13th, Samaritan Medical Center will be on-site at the Salmon Run Mall with a complete da Vinci robotic surgical system, identical to the one used by surgeons at the hospital.  The Samaritan display is part of the Mall’s first annual Health & Wellness Expo, which will be held from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.  This event is free and open to the public. 

During the Health & Wellness Expo, visitors to the Samaritan booth will get a chance to have a hands-on experience with the device by actually sitting at the surgeon’s console and performing “surgery” on tiny inanimate objects.  Samaritan surgeons and surgical technicians who are now using the da Vinci technology to perform complex and delicate operations will be on hand for demonstrations and to answer questions. 

The da Vinci technology provides an alternative to both traditional open surgery and conventional laparoscopy, putting a surgeon’s hands at the controls of a state-of-the-art robotic platform.  Although it is called “robotic,” it still takes a skilled surgeon with knowledge and experience to maneuver the da Vinci technology.  In fact, every movement of the da Vinci system’s four robotic arms is directed and controlled by the surgeon.  

Since implemented in Fall 2012, more than 300 robotic-assisted cases have been completed at Samaritan Medical Center, including OB/GYN, urological, and general surgical procedures.

MWhalenWatertown, New York ----- Samaritan Medical Center is proud to announce the appointment of Mary Whalen as the hospital’s new Chief Operating Officer (COO). As COO, Whalen will lead the day-to-day operations for Samaritan Medical Center and be responsible for ensuring that all hospital operations produce the necessary outcomes to support the highest quality patient care and safety.  She started her new role September 2nd.

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Samaritan Medical Center | 830 Washington Street | Watertown, NY 13601 | (315)785-4000 | Toll-Free 1-877-888-6138
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