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Banner Hospital CEO Elected to Council of Regents

Laura Robertson, RN, and chief executive officer of Banner Baywood Medical Center and Banner Heart Hospital, has been appointed to the Council of Regents, the legislative body of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE).

The Council of Regents serves as the link between ACHE and its members by approving governance and membership regulations. The council also promotes ACHE programs, services and activities within their respective areas.

Robertson will take office at the Council of Regents meeting, March 22, 2014, during ACHE’s 57th Congress on Healthcare Leadership meeting at the Hyatt Regency Chicago.

“I plan to lead by example to promote the value of leadership as a Regent,” Robertson said. “By doing so, I hope to motivate other ACHE members to volunteer for the organization and assume future leadership roles. I will also continue to mentor aspiring health care leaders and encourage them to pursue opportunities with ACHE.”

Robertson started her nursing career at Banner Health 25 years ago at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center in Phoenix. She as advanced throughout her time at Banner Health to include a variety of staff and management positions. In 2010, Robertson was named chief executive officer of Banner Baywood Medical Center in Mesa. Two years later she was named chief executive officer of Banner Heart Hospital, located on the same medical campus as Banner Baywood.

Robertson has made an impact in the community by her numerous volunteer acts in community and professional organizations. In July 2013, Robertson was named one of “50 Most Influential Women in Arizona Business” by AZ Business Magazine, the state’s leading business publication.

“Despite a busy career and family, I have built volunteerism into my life because it is important to me,” added Robertson. “My commitment to service is diverse – volunteering for both community and professional organizations.”

Banner Baywood Medical Center is an acute care hospital in Mesa, Ariz. The hospital is a Primary Stroke Center and also offers orthopedics, heart care, emergency care, surgery, cancer care, acute rehabilitation, women’s health and obstetrics. The 50,000-square-foot emergency department offers advanced emergency care and medical imaging technology. For more information, visit www.BannerHealth.com/Baywood.

Banner Heart Hospital is a Truven Top 50 Cardiovascular Hospital, and is ranked among the Phoenix area’s “Best Hospitals” for specialty services in heart care, heart surgery and geriatrics by U.S. News & World Report. The hospital’s emergency heart services, in conjunction with Banner Baywood Medical Center, received Chest Pain Center accreditation in 2011. Services at Banner Heart Hospital include open heart surgery, vascular care, interventional cardiology, heart failure and heart rhythm treatment, women’s heart care and cardiac rehabilitation.

Laura Robertson

Laura Robertson – 50 Most Influential Women in Arizona Business

Laura Robertson – CEO, Banner Baywood Medical Center and Banner Heart Hospital

Robertson began her nursing career at Banner Health in 1988 at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center. A cardiac nurse with nearly 20 years experience, she has served in a variety of staff and management positions, including Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit director. In 2010, she was named CEO of Banner Baywood and in 2012, she was named CEO of Banner Heart Hospital, which is on the same campus of Banner Baywood.

Surprising fact: “Exercise is my stress reliever and it provides me balance. I run six miles a day every morning.”

Biggest challenge: “Balancing a family and a career. I stay focused and make each a priority.”

Fifty Most Influential Women in Arizona Business – Every year in its July/August issue Arizona Business Magazine features 50 women who make an impact on Arizona business. To see the full list, read the digital issue >>

becky-armendariz

Armendariz named PR director for Banner East Region

Rebecca Armendariz, 27, public relations specialist at Banner Health, has been named public relations director for Banner Arizona East Region, effective June 24. She will oversee the public relations efforts at the following Banner Health facilities: Banner Baywood Medical Center, Banner Behavioral Health Hospital, Banner Desert Medical Center, Banner Gateway Medical Center, Banner Goldfield Medical Center, Banner Heart Hospital, Banner Home Care and Hospice and Banner Ironwood Medical Center.

Rebecca Armendariz has served as a PR specialist at Banner Health since September 2008. She is also the vice president of the board of directors for Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona, where she has held a board position since November 2009. Prior to joining Banner Health, Armendariz was an account coordinator at a local PR agency.

Armendariz received a bachelor’s degree from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University in 2008.

healthcare

Banner Goldfield Medical Center will open on Friday

Banner Goldfield Medical Center (formerly Arizona Regional Medical Center) will open its doors for patient care at 7 a.m. on Friday, June 14.

The hospital has been temporarily closed for one month while Banner systems and practices were implemented. During that time, new technology and equipment was installed and hospital staff underwent training.

Banner Goldfield Medical Center, located on Ironwood and Southern roads in Apache Junction, Ariz., will provide state-of-the-art, patient-centered care to the communities of Apache Junction and Gold Canyon. The 30-bed hospital will offer an array of medical care, including: emergency services, intensive care, medical/surgical care, progressive care, surgery, imaging, pharmacy and lab.

Banner Goldfield is part of nonprofit Banner Health. Banner Health was recently recognized as a top health system in the nation by Truven Health Analytics. As a Banner Health facility, Banner Goldfield will uphold Banner’s standard of efficient and effective medical care.

The hospital will utilize electronic medical records to ensure the highest level of patient care management and recordkeeping. In addition, the highly skilled on-site care team will be paired with the latest medical technology to provide excellent patient care. Patients in the Intensive Care Unit will be monitored by the Banner iCare team, which provides 24-hour remote monitoring of patients by physicians and nurses via closed-circuit cameras and technology. Banner iCare staff will work hand-in-hand with physicians and nurses at Banner Goldfield to provide an added level of care for patients.

Banner Goldfield will work closely with Banner’s neighboring health facilities and specialty hospitals in the East Valley to meet the health care needs of each and every patient. Patients requiring advanced heart care will have access to Banner Heart Hospital, a center that consistently ranks among the top hospitals in the U.S. for heart care. Patients in need of pediatric care will have access to experts and an array of pediatric services at Cardon Children’s Medical Center. In addition, Banner Health offers specialized care to East Valley residents in the areas of cancer, high-risk obstetrics, orthopedics and weight loss on the campuses of Banner Baywood Medical Center, Banner Desert Medical Center, Banner Gateway Medical Center and Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Banner Goldfield Medical Center is located at 2050 W. Southern Ave. in Apache Junction, Ariz. For more information, visit www.BannerHealth.com/Goldfield or call 480-733-3300.

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Banner Baywood earns certification

Banner Baywood Medical Center is the first hospital in Arizona to earn certification for Disease-Specific Care in hip fracture management and one of 15 nationwide to receive this distinction. The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval™ was awarded to Banner Baywood for its compliance with the organization’s national standards for healthcare quality and safety in disease-specific care.

Many older adults are prone to falls that result in hip fractures, which can lead to functional decline, illness, and death. With the population aging and the incidence of hip fractures increasing, Banner Baywood started seeking certification two years ago to better serve this population and recently underwent a rigorous onsite survey. According to the Joint Commission, a certified facility must provide continuous safe, high quality care, treatment and services by identifying opportunities for improvement processes.

“This achievement is the culmination of an incredible journey and months of hard work on behalf of our patients,” said Laura Robertson, CEO of Banner Baywood Medical Center. “Gaining certification highlights our multidisciplinary approach to standardization of care, greater efficiency and, ultimately, better outcomes for the hip fracture population that we serve.”

The Joint Commission evaluates and accredits more than 18,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. It’s one of the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. The organization’s Disease-Specific Care Certification Program is designed to evaluate clinical programs across the continuum of care.

volunteer

Banner honors Employees for Community Service

Banner Health has recognized five outstanding employees with a Paul L. Singer Award, an award that honors those who not only make a difference in people’s lives through excellent patient care, but through extraordinary volunteer work and community service.

Now in its 25th year, the Singer Awards honors Banner Health employees and their impressive community service activities. The 2012 award honorees were recognized Thursday at an event that honored the 54 employee award nominees and the five outstanding individuals who were selected to receive a Singer Award. The five winners received a certificate and trophy as well as a monetary donation toward a charity of their choosing.

The 2012 Singer Award recipients include:

Rosinja de Gorostiza (Banner Baywood Medical Center)

Community service: Bay Area Camarines Norte Association

Muriel Kremb (Banner Estrella Medical Center)

Community service: Arizona Game and Fish, Adobe Mountain Wildlife Center

James Nimos (Banner Sun Health Research Institute)

Community service: New Song Center for Grieving Children

Kimberly Reiners (Cardon Children’s Medical Center)

Community service: Camp Soaring Eagle and Asthma Athletics

Kenneth Wutoh (Page Hospital)

Community service: Stepping with Faith Rehab and Missahoe Orphanage in Ghana

The Singer Awards are named after the late Paul L. Singer, MD, a former chief of staff at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center in Phoenix who exemplified a commitment to community service. Banner encourages employees to take its nonprofit mission of making a difference in people’s lives through excellent patient care beyond the hospital and into their communities.

Banner Health is one of the largest, nonprofit health care systems in the country. The system owns or manages 23 acute-care hospitals, long-term care centers, outpatient surgery centers and an array of other services including physician clinics and home care and hospice services. Banner Health is in seven states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Nebraska, Nevada and Wyoming.

Banner Baywood Medical Center

Arizona’s Health Care Providers Are Working To Eradicate On-Site Infections

Hospital-acquired infections — illnesses that attack patients after they have been admitted — have health care officials taking myriad steps to combat, control and prevent this insidious enemy.

One of those steps is a name change courtesy of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. They now are called healthcare-associated infections, or HAIs.

Jessica Rigler, HAI prevention coordinator at the Arizona Department of Health Services, explains the reasoning behind the terminology change: Health care infections occur not only in hospitals, but in all health care venues, including long-term care, assisted living, and urgent care centers. In addition, Rigler says, these infections are brought into a hospital by an ailing patient, and not necessarily acquired there.

Nevertheless, whatever term applies, HAIs present a serious challenge for hospitals in Arizona and throughout the country. In 2007, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated the number of HAIs in U.S. hospitals was 1.7 million, resulting in nearly 99,000 deaths each year.

In April 2008, Banner Baywood Medical Center in Mesa was thrust into the spotlight following an HAI outbreak. The staff launched an aggressive program to deal with the situation, such as correcting air-pressure problems in some of the 10 operating rooms, and firing an overnight cleaning crew that was found to have missed germs on operating room floors, equipment and operating tables.

The hospital also limited the number of students and observers allowed in operating rooms, switched to thicker surgical wrap, and directed surgeons to wear only hospital-laundered scrubs.

Seven months after numerous changes were implemented, Banner Baywood, a general, acute-care hospital that performs about 10,000 surgeries each year and serves many senior citizens, detected just one surgical-site infection, according to Chris Halowell, director of perioperative services at the hospital.

Arlene Gimbel, chief nursing officer at Banner Baywood, says some infections are the direct result of overuse of antibiotics.

“We have dealt with this for quite some time, and we will continue to do so,” she says. “Our rate (of infection) has improved over the last couple of years due to our infection prevention program.”

While the hospital’s goal is to have zero infections, Gimbel says, “It’s almost impossible to be at zero, but it’s something we strive for every day. An area we can control is personal hygiene.”

A key element in preventing the spread of HAIs is to identify patients with an infection upon admission and take appropriate precautionary measures, Gimbel says. Every single patient found to have an infection was treated successfully, she adds.

Rigler says the problem is not as serious as it was some months ago because of infection prevention and control measures taken by health care facilities. Each hospital tracks its own data, but Arizona does not require public disclosure of infections that occur in health care facilities.

“We’re continually moving in the direction of preventing infections,” she says.

Early this year, ADHS established a new healthcare-associated infection advisory committee to follow up on recommendations of a legislatively created HAI panel in 2008. The original committee issued a report last December concluding that “strategies other than public reporting would be more successful in preventing healthcare-associated infections,” Rigler says. Four subcommittees, which Rigler calls the workhorses, focus on prevention strategies, surveillance, public education and provider education.

“The prevention strategies subcommittee is working to synthesize HAI prevention, gather the best practices and guidelines recommended from institutions nationally, and pull together a tool kit of information to help health care organizations decide on costs, how to implement programs, and how sustainable interventions are going to be,” Rigler says.

The surveillance panel is exploring how health care facilities are monitoring infections, what data they are collecting, and will then work closely with the National Healthcare Safety Network, which is run by the CDC.

Regarding the need for more transparency, Rigler says ADHS has an excellent relationship with its partners throughout the state. If ADHS notices an increase in infections, it contacts local health agencies, which then provide expertise and assistance.

“We have an obligation not to disclose certain pieces of information about one’s health condition,” Gimbel says. “It’s true that the public has a right to know, but one of the reasons health care facilities are reluctant is because of our responsibility toward patient privacy.”

To provide guidelines for other hospitals facing an outbreak of infections, Banner Baywood published an extensive article on its outbreak and plan of action in the March 2010 issue of AORN, a publication of the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses.

“We wanted to share our experience with the rest of the community,” Halowell says. “We included a timeline of what we did. They can use that as a check list if they have an outbreak. We’re proud of our infection prevent program and feel very good about our patients being safe when they come to Baywood.”