Presidents Message

August 2009

Dear Colleagues:

Beginning with this edition, you’ll notice several changes to this monthly update.  First, I have expanded the content to showcase news about the people and programs that keep us growing. And secondly, we have begun distributing this to a number of people at other health care institutions as well as more deeply into the leadership of our Queens community. 

I’d like to use this as a forum to address some of the issues and challenges that face our institution, and others around us, and to put those challenges in the context of the impact – whether positive or negative – on the ability to deliver safe, high quality, patient care and service.  With this, I welcome feedback and ideas.

Of course, the issue that so many of us are focused upon is health care reform. 

Initially, reform-forging legislation looked as if it might fast track through the House and Senate prior to the August recess. Now, resistance to the Obama administration’s plan is beginning to coalesce – especially as a proposed additional tax burden for businesses and individuals has emerged.  Will we have a government run insurance plan that will compete with private plans? How will we pay for a plan, and will it actually cut spending on healthcare?  There is talk of incrementalism versus a broad-reaching plan.

As many of you are well aware, both the hospital industry and the pharmaceutical industry have come to the negotiating table with many billions of dollars in cuts and cost reductions that will unfold over the next decade.  Physicians and the insurance industry are the other two legs of the health care financial stool.  Of course we believe that the lesser fiscal pain should be borne by physicians and the health care delivery system.  We represent the non-profit part of the equation. Those of us who operate health care institutions know how difficult it is just stay even.  And, as many physicians will tell you, their ability to manage a profitable practice has long been under siege. Pharmaceutical companies and commercial insurers represent some of the most profitable sectors of the business economy, and we feel it is fair for them to do more to help mitigate the costs of the coming change. 

Real reform needs to happen and it will require many adjustments.  Our national and state associations are on the front lines of helping policy makers and legislators understand what the components of different approaches will mean to direct patient care.  While none of us yet knows what the bottom line will be to pay for health care reform, we do know that change will not be easy- in fact, it is likely to be seismic.  While we work our way through the changes to come, the real bottom line needs to be more access for patients, and a way to accomplish that that doesn’t strangle the ability of hospitals and physicians to deliver that access.

 


Sincerely,


Stephen S. Mills, F.A.C.H.E.


PS:  Some colleagues are receiving this in a printed form, and others via email from our new website.  If you’d prefer one form over another, or even not to get it at all, please call our Public Affairs & Marketing team at 718-670-1065, or send us a note using the “contact us” function on nyhq.org.  All the letters will be archived on the website, and you can feel free to forward them to others who you think may have interest.

PEOPLE AND PROGRAMS  

PEOPLE NEWS

Our physicians and clinical staff take an active role in teaching and conducting research throughout the year, and publishing that research for the benefit of patients and the worldwide medical community. As well, our clinicians are often asked to participate on the editorial boards of peer-reviewed journals.  Second quarter of the year was a particularly productive time for our multi-faceted research program.

Phyllis August
Phyllis August, M.D., M.P.H.,
Phyllis August, M.D., M.P.H., director, Eugene and Theresa Lang Center for Research and Education, and the Ralph A. Baer, M.D., professor of medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College, was a co-investigator and co-author of BARI 2D, a landmark study investigating diabetes and heart disease published June 11 in the “New England Journal of Medicine.”

David Barlas, M.D., was named a top peer reviewer for the “Annals of Emergency Medicine” for 2009.

The hospital recently received two research awards at the New York Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians' Annual Scientific Assembly.

"A clinical study to evaluate the efficacy of 4% liposomal lidocaine as compared to placebo for pain reduction of nonemergent venipuncture in adults," by Jeffrey P. Green, M.D., co-authored by Gregg Rusczyk, M.D., Saurin Bhatt, M.D., Dana Amodeo, D.O., Regina Cregin, M.S., B.C.P.S., Pharm.D.
"Insufficient clinician documentation of significant electrocardiographic findings in adults presenting to the emergency department with dysrhythmias and/or conduction disorders," by Nidhi Garg, M.D., co-authored by Alison Suarez, M.D., Piyush Jain, M.D., and Michael S. Radeos, M.D. M.P.H.

Bruce Spinowitz, M.D., co-authored a research article, “Anaemia management with subcutaneous epoetin delta in patients with chronic kidney disease (predialysis, haemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis): result of an open-label, 1-year study” in “Nephrology.”

Gregg Landis, M.D., Alexander Kraev, M.D., James Turner, M.D., Kedar Oak, M.P.H., and Lisa Galati, P.A.-C., presented a paper titled “Improving the Power of the ASA Classification System to Risk Stratify Vascular Patients: The NSQIP-Defined Functional Status” at the annual meeting of the Society for Vascular Surgery in Denver on June 14.

When our clinical leaders are recognized for their expertise and contributions to the medical knowledge base, our patients gain additional confidence that they can access the expertise they need... right here in Queens.

Nationally, one physician who has made outstanding efforts in diabetes care is recognized as a highly regarded clinician and educator at the American Diabetes Association’s annual Scientific Sessions in June. This year, 15,000 scientists, physicians and health care professionals from around the world recognized Daniel Lorber, M.D., F.A.C.P., C.D.E., director of endocrinology and associate director at our Lang Center for Research and Education, at the ADA conference.

The “Excellence in Teaching Award 2009” is bestowed annually by Weill Cornell Medical College to a short list of faculty. This year, Terence Brady, M.D., our chairman of medicine and clinical assistant professor of Medicine, was selected by third-year medical students to receive the award for his teaching efforts.

Michael S. Radeos, M.D., M.P.H., emergency medicine research director, has been appointed by the American College of Emergency Physicians as its international ambassador to the country of Greece on issues pertaining to the progress and status of emergency medicine.

Joseph Abularrage, M.D., F.A.A.P., chairman, department of pediatrics was recently elected as treasurer to the American Academy of Pediatrics, New York Chapter 2 division, serving Queens, Brooklyn, Nassau and Suffolk counties.

Attracting and promoting stellar clinical talent continues to raise the bar on the level of service we provide for our patients.

Michael Zimmerman, M.D., joins us as an attending physician in Emergency Medicine. Dr. Zimmerman attended Georgetown University School of Medicine and did his residency training in emergency medicine at the University of Illinois, where he served as chief resident. He most recently completed his fellowship in emergency ultrasound at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset. His interests include emergency ultrasound research.

Welcome back to Samuel Lang, M.D., chairman of Cardiothoracic Surgery. He formerly served as director of Cardiothoracic Surgery from 1996 to 1999— when we first began our Cardiothoracic Surgery program.

Paul C. Lee
Paul C. Lee, M.D.,
Paul C. Lee, M.D., attending surgeon, was appointed vice chairman, Cardiothoracic Surgery and chief, Thoracic Surgery Division.

Chong Park, M.D., director, Cardiac Catheterization, has also been appointed as director, Division of Cardiology.

Emmanuel N. Moustakakis
Emmanuel N. Moustakakis, M. D.,
Emmanuel N. Moustakakis, M. D., has been named director, Coronary Care Unit.  An interventional cardiologist, Dr. Moustakakis has completed fellowships in interventional cardiology and cardiovascular medicine at North Shore University Hospital/Long Island Jewish Health System in Manhasset.  Dr. Moustakakis is board-certified in cardiovascular diseases and nuclear cardiology.  He received his medical degree from the University of Texas – Houston Medical School.  He completed his internship and residency at New York University School of Medicine/Bellevue Hospital Center.  He has held undergraduate and graduate research positions at Stanford University School of Medicine’s division of cardiovascular medicine, the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, and the division of cardiology at New York University School of Medicine.

Amit Chandra, M.D., joins us as an attending physician in Emergency Medicine after recently graduating from our residency program. He achieved his medical degree at Eastern Virginia Medical School, and has an interest in international emergency medicine and global health.

Anita Singla, M.D., joins us an emergency medicine attending physician after recently completing her fellowship training in Emergency Ultrasound. She earned her medical degree from SUNY Upstate Medical Center and completed her residency training in Emergency Medicine at North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, N.Y.

Adrienne Wasserman, M.D., M.P.H., recently joined the emergency medicine attending staff after completing her residency training in Emergency Medicine at Methodist Hospital in Brooklyn, N.Y. She received her medical degree from the University of Miami, and her M.P.H. from Florida International University, Miami, FL.

Alicia Gittleman, M.D., joins us as an attending physician in Radiation Oncology.  She recently completed her fellowship at our hospital. Dr. Gittleman completed her residency in radiation oncology at New York University Medical Center and a transitional year internship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Dr. Gittleman achieved her medical degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo. She has conducted research and published articles in the fields of neuro-oncology, breast malignancies, gastrointestinal malignancies and genitourinary malignancies.

The department of Surgery welcomes Jason M. Sample, M.D., as director of emergency surgery, trauma and surgical critical care. Dr. Sample comes to NYHQ from Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, Jamaica, N.Y., where he was associate director of trauma, director of medical education for the Department of Surgery, and an attending physician. Dr. Sample earned a B.S.E. in biomedical engineering from Duke University, Durham, N.C., and his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. He served an internship and residency in surgery at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital.

The Division of Emergency Ultrasound welcomes new fellows Monica Kapoor, M.D., and Michelle Pearl-Davis, D.O. Dr. Kapoor completed her residency training in Emergency Medicine at North Shore University Hospital, Manhasset, NY, after receiving her medical training at the University of Massachusetts School of Medicine in Worcester. Dr. Pearl-Davis graduated from Touro University College of Osteopathic Medicine, Vallejo, CA and completed her residency training in Emergency Medicine at Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY.


PROGRAM NEWS

New Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation Center

New York Hospital Queens recently cut a ribbon to mark the opening of its new 7,200-square-foot Center for Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation Medicine in Fresh Meadows. The new facility, located at 163-03 Horace Harding Expressway, will provide complete musculoskeletal care, including orthopaedics, physiatry and rehabilitation, all in one convenient and accessible location.


NYHQ Graduates 102, Welcomes New Class of Physicians-in-Training

We prepare physicians of the future through robust residency and fellowship training in medicine, dental and oral medicine, emergency medicine, internal medicine, podiatric medicine and surgery, radiation oncology, cardiovascular, gastroenterology, geriatrics, infectious disease, nephrology and pulmonary/critical care medicine. Currently, there are 234 residents and fellows in the hospital’s program.

In June, we awarded 102 diplomas to physicians-in-training diplomas across our programs. About 65 percent of these graduating doctors have elected to remain in Queens and the surrounding areas of New York City or Long Island to continue their careers.
On July 1, we welcomed 118 new residents and fellows to our program.

PROGRESS

Major Modernization Update    

Modernization Project 

Progress on West Wing

Despite the enormous challenges posed by the economic recession and state budget cuts, by mid-2010, we expect to open a new 190,000 square-foot (seven story) wing, now known as our “West Wing.” The construction plan remains on schedule. The exterior walls, windows, and metal panels on the 7th and 8th floors are nearly complete. Work on the main roof is complete. Interior dry wall is being installed on the 4th and 5th floors and is about to begin on the first floor. Exterior caulking began in early July. The mechanical, electrical and plumbing work continues


Med Mal Win

As the July 1 deadline for the New York State Department of Insurance to raise medical malpractice rates approached, the Superintendent waited to see how the Senate would respond to the Assembly’s approval of an extension of the freeze on the rates. On July 9, the Senate passed the bill that extends a freeze on an increase in physician medical malpractice premiums until June 30, 2010.

The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) labeled the passing of this bill a “major victory” but warned physicians that the reprieve may be temporary. The MSSNY is encouraging all physicians to continue to their efforts to push for lasting reforms to lower the cost of premiums. I would like to acknowledge and thank the hospital’s Medical Staff Society and physician leadership for their ongoing advocacy efforts such as encouraging physicians to contact legislators in support of the bill.


 

 Website Homepage

New: nyhq.org

New Website Launched   

We launched our new, interactive, web site on July 6.  Currently the site is available in English and in late August will be available in Chinese, Korean and Spanish.  The new website is fully scalable and will evolve as new features and hospital services are developed. I encourage everyone to visit our new website www.nyhq.org and let us know what you think.


 

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