Sun Health President and Chief Executive Officer Ron Guziak is one of 10 new members recently elected to Care Continuum Alliance’s (CCA) 2013-14 board of directors. Guziak was elected during a business meeting at the CCA Forum 2013, the association’s national meeting, held Oct. 23-25 in Scottsdale.
CCA is the leading advocate for population health management and wellness. The care continuum includes wellness and health promotion, prevention, care coordination and patient advocacy, condition management and complex case management. CCA promotes the role of these and other strategies in raising care quality, improving health outcomes and reducing preventable health care costs for individuals with or at risk of chronic disease.
Guziak was cited for bringing “…an entrepreneur’s sprit to Sun Health, believing the best business practices must be applied to achieve strategic outcomes,” according to CCA’s official announcement.
Guziak joins a board of top executives from Accenture, Accountable Health, Alere, ASAP Brazil, HealthFitness, ICA, Noridian, Silverlink and Viridian. Fred Goldstein, the association’s president for accountable care, was approved as chairman.
Sun Health’s Care Transitions program also received a second consecutive “Outstanding Leadership in Population Health Award” from CCA during the national meeting.
Anniversaries are often marked by a special surprise. For Sun Health Care Transitions, that surprise was doubly exciting. The team celebrated its second anniversary by receiving a second consecutive “Outstanding Leadership in Population Health Award” from the Care Continuum Alliance (CCA). Representing more than 200 health companies, organizations and individual providers committed to improving the health of populations, the CCA focuses on raising care quality, improving health outcomes and reducing costs for individuals affected by chronic disease.
Sun Health, together with Banner Health, was honored in the “Advancing Accountable Care” category for both organizations’ successful collaboration “…toward Community Health and Wellness.” Sun Health Vice President of Business Development Jennifer Drago, MHSA, MBA, FACHE and Banner Health Vice President for Patient Care Innovation Deborah H. Dahl, BSE, MBA, FACHE accepted the award during CCA’s national meeting, held Oct. 23-25 in Scottsdale.
“Sun Health Care Transitions is impacting the lives of thousands of patients and their families,” explained Ron Guziak, president and chief executive officer of Sun Health. “As one of 102 sites designated by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services as a Community-based Care Transitions Program, we are also demonstrating how to assist individuals to take control of their own health status.”
The award acknowledges the program’s impact on nearly 2,000 chronic disease patients, who are living healthier lives since the program launched in November 2011. Partnering with Banner Boswell Medical Center, Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center, community physicians and other providers, Care Transitions nurses educate patients on how to better manage their disease and stay healthy. Ultimately, this support reduces their chances of being rehospitalized. Fewer than seven percent of patients participating in this free program have been readmitted, compared to a 20-percent national average among Medicare services beneficiaries.
This latest award is one in a series of recent recognitions at the local, regional and national levels. A study on the program also was recently published on the BMC Geriatrics website. The study showed that in addition to high levels of patient satisfaction with the Care Transitions program, participants’ confidence with self-care was significantly improved. Further, the program demonstrated a 73-percent reduction in readmissions and an actual Medicare cost savings during the nine-month period of $214,192, excluding administrative costs. The study can be found at http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2318/13/94.
Sun Health has launched a Memory Care Navigator program, the newest offering in the nonprofit organization’s rapidly growing collection of community health programs.
Peoria’s Marty Finley, M.Ed. has been selected as the Sun Health Memory Care Navigator, who will provide personal and professional guidance to patients, family members and caregivers coping with the emotional, psychological and physical effects of dementia. The Navigator will prepare a plan of care individualized to their needs, and will serve as a liaison between patients and families, their physicians and ancillary community services.
Specifically, the Navigator is available to:
• Assess the needs of the patient and family and provide confidential consultation; • Link patients and family members to education, support groups and assistive services in the West Valley; • Be an ongoing resource for families and caregivers as new challenges arise through different stages of dementia; • Educate patients and family members about available local clinical trials that they may discuss with their physicians; and • Collaborate with and communicate recommendations to each patient’s physician.
“We want to provide a comprehensive resource that minimizes the stress of caring for a loved one with dementia,” Finley said. “A number of wonderful resources exist in the West Valley that can benefit dementia patients as well as their caregivers and families. We want to help people to be aware of these resources and take advantage of them”.
While local physicians can refer patients to the program, family members and other caregivers can also contact Finley directly. She can be reached at 623.832.9300. More information about the Memory Care Navigator program can be found at www.SunHealth.org/memorycare.
The program is offered at no charge to patients and their families, thanks to funds raised in the community through the Sun Health Foundation. Other nonprofit community health programs supported through the Foundation include Sun Health Care Transitions, Vial of Life and File of Life.
In addition, Sun Health will expand the free programming available through its Community Education series to include several seminars each month on topics related to brain health, dementia, and caregiver challenges. The monthly Sun Health Community Education lineup can be found by visiting www.SunHealth.org and clicking Community Education.
Sun Health recently launched two signature tools – Vial of Life and File of Life. Both resources, offered for free as a service to the community, are designed to enhance access to important medical information during an emergency.
A popular tool used by local residents and emergency personnel for many years, Sun Health, in partnership with Banner Health, recently revitalized Vial of Life with a slightly larger pill bottle. For use at home, the vial/bottle contains an easy-to-complete medical form that contains important information such as prominent medical conditions, past surgeries, physician contact information and medications. Area residents are encouraged to complete the medical form, place it in the pill bottle and then put the bottle in their refrigerator. To help emergency personnel locate the pill bottle, residents are encouraged to post a bright orange window cling on their front window or front door, or on the front of their refrigerator. This orange cling alerts emergency professional to look for the vial in the refrigerator.
File of Life puts that same potentially life-saving information in a portable device. The computer flash drive holds emergency medical information including:
• Easy to follow instructions; • Pre-formatted, easy-to-populate emergency medical forms; and • Extra storage for additional members’ information.
The flash drive comes equipped with a lanyard, but it can easily be clipped on a key chain or stored inside a purse, making it an ideal portable solution to carry when away from home, traveling or exercising.
Free Classes Area residents can learn more about the programs, and receive their free Vial of Life and File of Life by attending an introductory class. All classes listed are scheduled from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.:
· Aug. 6, The Colonnade, 19116 Colonnade Way, Surprise · Sept. 10, Banner Boswell Medical Center, Support Services Building, 13180 N. 103rd Dr., Sun City · Sept. 11, Grandview Terrace, 14515 W. Granite Valley Dr., Sun City West · Oct. 31, La Loma Village, 14154 Denny Blvd., Litchfield Park
To register for an upcoming class, please call (623) 455-5741. For more information about this program, visit: www.sunhealth.org/vialoflife. To schedule a Vial of Life/File of Life presentation for your club or group, please call Autumn Leonard at (623) 832-5665.
Sun Health Senior Living, a nationally recognized operator of three retirement communities and two care centers in Arizona, appointed Barbara Foster executive director of The Colonnade, an active adult life care community located in Surprise.
Foster, who comes to Sun Health from Macon, Ga., brings more than 25 years of industry experience to the role. She has worked with an array of continuing care retirement communities across the country serving in varied leadership capacities, including vice president of operations, executive director and regional operations manager. Included among her many leadership duties was responsibility for opening new CCRCs, running large-scale care centers, and maintaining operational responsibility for upwards of 1,000 residents in a single community.
“When I met the team at Sun Health and saw its goals to impart healthy living options for their residents as well as seniors in the surrounding area via community health programs and forward-thinking strategic initiatives, I was hooked,” Foster said. “I wanted to be part of something bigger than myself that impacted seniors in a positive way. I feel Sun Health fulfills that need and will for many years to come.”
Foster’s extensive experience opening new communities has prepared her well to lead The Colonnade, which is poised for continued growth this summer with the opening of a new 36-unit condo-style complex known as The Colonnade Villas.
As executive director of The Colonnade, Foster is responsible for leading, administering and directing virtually all aspects of community operations, ranging from budget oversight, staff management and regulatory compliance, to serving as a liaison between the community and local hospitals, care centers and senior assistance agencies.
“The people at Sun Health think big, act in positive ways and look past the here and now to move today’s seniors beyond the status quo of aging and into a future of health and wellness so they can live longer, healthier lives,” she commented. “My goals as executive director at The Colonnade include ensuring open communication between the residents, staff and myself; keeping the community financially stable and growing; and most importantly, maintaining resident satisfaction by creating exciting opportunities to preserve and propel their physical, intellectual, spiritual and social health and well-being.”
Just four years after its opening and roughly a year after Sun Health assumed full ownership of the property, The Colonnade is growing.
To better meet the needs of residents who like the efficiency of an apartment in a retirement community setting, The Colonnade has updated its master site plan to include a new design for 36-apartment villas and two townhomes.
The building architecture is designed with attractive visual aesthetics, diversity, enhanced functionality and ease of living. Each building reflects Mediterranean style architecture, with an appealing color palette, tile roofs, and added features such as awnings, shutters and custom iron accents.
The floor plans have been upgraded to better meet the diverse needs of its owners. Balconies have been added to two levels in the middle units above the foyer area. Appealing embellishments such as a trellised arbor, iron work on the balconies and wrap around stepped, hipped roofs at the corner units reflect standards essential to The Colonnade residents.
In addition, the plan also includes:
An expansion of the community’s cart path for vehicles and a pedestrian-only pathway,
The construction of additional recreational facilities, and
The development of open and green space design to create a resort-like feel and additional leisure nodes for outside resident activities.
Anticipated to open in 3Q 2013, the construction is expected to begin in August and last 9-12 months.
“We’re delighted to offer this enhancement to our residents,” said Sharon Grambow, chief operating officer for Sun Health Senior Living and one of the senior leaders who helped open the community in 2008.
“In addition to the apartment villas, these enhancements are ones our residents have requested for some time. We think they will help to distinguish our community and attract more great residents who want to call The Colonnade home.”
For more information on The Colonnade, visit Sun Health’s website at www.sunhealth.org.
Sun Health was named Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce’s “2011 Non-Profit of the Year.” The award was presented during the Chamber’s annual awards banquet on March 9 at The Colonnade, a Sun Health Senior Living Community in Surprise.
“We are fortunate to receive this honor and be recognized among such an impressive group or organizations that are making an impact in the Northwest Valley,” Sun Health Chief Executive Officer Ron Guziak said. “2011 was an amazing year of expansion and growth for Sun Health, and we’re excited to continue our community support of health and healthy living programs throughout 2012 and beyond.”
Sun Health’s three major components include the Sun Health Foundation, providing funding and support for Banner Boswell Medical Center, Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center and the Banner Sun Health Research Institute; Sun Health Senior Living; and Sun Health Community Health including its Medication Management and Care Transitions programs.
Below are highlights on how each of Sun Health’s components worked to help guarantee superior health care throughout the West Valley during 2011:
Sun Health Foundation contributed nearly $14.5 million to health and human service programs, including $7 million for the new Cath Lab at Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center. The Cath Lab opened to the public on Valentine’s Day, 2012.
During 2011, Sun Health announced its decision to purchase The Colonnade. Currently consisting of 70 casitas, four townhomes and the recreational village, the planned $100 million nonprofit retirement community is projected to include 150-250 additional units, most built as townhomes and multistory villa apartments.
More than 300 people are benefiting from safer medication regimens thanks to the 2011 launch of Sun Health’s Medication Management program. This program helps individuals take control of their medication regimen through a suite of services ensuring greater accuracy, safety and efficacy of their medication plans.
Offered at no charge to patients, Sun Health’s Care Transitions program was launched in 2011 to support chronically ill patients following a major hospital stay. The program helps patients better understand their condition and the necessary lifestyle changes needed to prevent future admissions. Offered in partnership with Banner Boswell Medical Center and Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center, all patients involved in the program to date have avoided readmission.
Sun Health and MedMinder have partnered together to allow participants from the Sun Health Medication Management program a 30-day trial of the My Electronic Pillbox for as little as $1. If, at the end of the 30 days, participants opt to keep My Electronic Pillbox, they will be enrolled in a lease-to-own program and charged $25 per month for 23 months.
My Electronic Pillbox is a state-of-the-art program that helps participants keep track of their medication, allowing for a greater peace of mind for both the individual and his or her family. The MedMinder pill dispenser has the same features of a regular pill organizer; however, it also provides medication reminders to the user and informs him or her if medications are missed. Loved ones and caregivers can also be notified through email or text message when a medication must be taken or was missed.
Ron Guziak, Sun Health’s chief executive officer, spoke about the dangers of poor medication adherence among seniors.
“Study after study clearly illustrates just how serious and prevalent the problem of poor medication adherence among seniors is,” Guziak says. “The numbers indicate this is a potentially life-threatening issue, and My Electronic Pillbox conveniently and affordably provides an answer.”
My Electronic Pillbox is easy to use and has no digital readouts. Instead, it utilizes flashing lights, audible beeps and phone calls, text messages and emails to remind participants to take their medication. This wireless pill dispenser and its complementary medication management service makes it easier to adhere to complex medication regimens.
My Electronic Pillbox can be programmed via the Internet by either the participant or Sun Health. There is no need for a wireless router, computer, phone line or any form of internet access to use the MedMinder pill dispenser.
“This new program will help keep seniors independent, at home and at ease with their medication management,” says MedMinder’s Chief Executive Officer Evan Shavelsky.
About Sun Health Sun Health is a long-standing community partner providing philanthropic resources for area healthcare, comprehensive senior living options and signature programs that leverage technology to enhance healthcare and service — both within and outside hospital walls.
Its emerging chronic disease and medication management programs, for instance, will enable Sun Health to provide residents with even greater access to healthcare tools and services that promote healthy living.
Its Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization that provides philanthropic funding for Banner Boswell Medical Center, Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center, Banner Sun Health Research Institute and other non-profit services. Its senior living services provide care at three distinct retirement communities: The Colonnade in Sun City Grand, Grandview Terrace in Sun City West and La Loma Village in Litchfield Park.
To learn more about the 30-day trial or My Electronic Pillbox, call (623) 832-4100 or visit medminder.com.
Thanks to the Sun Health Foundation, on Saturday, February 18th, doctors will no longer be recognizable; they will be in “Purse-Suit of Fashion.”
Leaving behind their scrubs, stethoscopes and lab coats, doctors and physicians will trade in their uniform and instead show off some of Dillard’s hottest spring fashions. They’ll also be trading in their hospital halls and operating rooms for the Wigwam Arizona’s runway.
This fashion-filled event, with the witty name of “Purse-Suit of Fashion,” is hosted by the Sun Health Foundation and sponsored by the neuroscience services departments at Banner Boswell and Banner Del E. Webb Medical Centers.
The Sun Health Foundation is a non-profit organization, which aims to provide philanthropic funding for Banner Boswell Medical Center, Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center and the Sun Health Research Institute. Sun Health Foundation is under the umbrella of Sun Health, which provides philanthropic resources for the fields of health care, senior living options and technological enhancements of healthcare and service within and outside of hospitals.
The event will start at 11 a.m. with an hour of socializing and on-site shopping. The shopping site will feature Glitz~N~Glam, Paula’s Bags & More, Foofarah!, IzzBella Designs and Sharon Lee Designs.
After an hour of lunch, the doctors will hit the runway where they and their families will strut their stuff in style. Some familiar faces will include Dr. Steven Charney and Dr. Michael Cofield of the Banner Boswell and Banner Del E. Webb Medical Centers; Dr. Mark Campbell, Dr. Arash Araghi and Dr. Joshua Abrams of the Core Institute; and Dr. Chris Mackey of Cardiac Solutions and Dr. Marwan Sabbagh of the Banner Sun Health Research Institute.
Members of the Sun Health Foundation Board of Trustees and the foundation’s Volunteers in Philanthropy will also be giving their modeling career a shot.
Tickets are on sale for $60, $30 of which are tax deductible. To reserve seats, you can either call 623-832-4931 or visit sunhealth.org.