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President's Message New York Hospital Queens


Dear Colleagues:

Everyone reading this knows that we have seen dramatic changes in the hospital landscape over the last decade—including a trend toward hospital conglomerates acquiring community hospitals and using them as feeders to larger institutions. When that happens in this area, in too many cases patients are required travel to Manhattan or Long Island for complex services, such as surgery, cancer care or heart care. This forced ‘out migration’ often comes at a great inconvenience to patients and their loved ones. This is also a concern for the physicians and hospitals that are heavily invested in being prepared to treat patients in the community that we serve.

It should always be the clinical judgment of a treating physician that directs how and where his/her patient receives care.  That said, we need to make sure that the robust resources, excellence and expertise that is right here – don’t get overlooked or undervalued in the noise around acquisitions. Our message is similar to that of the Queens Borough President and the Queens Chamber of Commerce, let’s “Keep it in Queens.”  

In most cases, there is no reason for this borough’s residents to leave Queens. Today, we offer a higher quality of care right here.  We reinvest in the health of the Queens medical community and the public by bringing here medical talent, techniques and technology.  While New York Hospital Queens is a member of a prominent hospital system, we are a self-directed, tertiary community teaching hospital and we operate the majority of our programs independently. Our goal, and our system’s goal for NYHQ, is to keep patients in Queens.

And, we support our community’s physicians with an increasing array of high-end high-quality programs and services, many developed as a direct result of responding to their needs. Here are just a few examples:

  • “The Bone & Joint Hospital of Queens” has grown out of our revamped Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation program.  Today, we offer a full range of services, including sports medicine and rehabilitation.  Joint resurfacing and minimally invasive hip, knee, wrist and shoulder surgeries are performed with cutting edge technology and techniques.  Healthgrades, an independent hospital rating organization, has given our hospital the Joint Replacement Excellence Award for the second year in a row (2011-2012) and has ranked our joint replacement team among the top 5 % in the nation for the past two years. 
  • Cardiac disease remains the number one cause of death in the borough of Queens. Access to a full continuum of cardiovascular services is critical in this community. Today, our NYHQ Heart & Vascular Center is a sophisticated, comprehensive “Heart Hospital.” Our specialists have performed thousands of surgeries, catheterizations, PCIs and other interventional procedures, routine and complex. We have one of only two heart surgery programs in the borough, and we can boast superb outcomes.  Even with all the challenges cardiology has faced in the past few years, the program has continued to grow in volume, scope, clinical talent and quality.
  • NYHQ is well ahead of the curve in making electronic health records (EHR) a reality.  And, in just a few months EHR will be fully functional for inpatients and the emergency department. In the near future, we will bring EHR to community-based physician offices and throughout our 18 ambulatory care facilities.
  • We recently brought on Thomas Evans as vice president for Physician Business Development.  This is an investment in our drive to closely align with more physicians who serve this community. The expectation is that a higher level of alignment will improve patient outcomes and community health, while providing strategic options for physicians who want to work more closely with our institution.

We are fortunate that New York Hospital Queens has 1,600+ physicians, dentist and podiatrists on our medical staff. These professionals are the present and future of keeping expertise in Queens for the good of patients and physicians. We ask area physicians to learn more about our Physician Business Development initiatives, and if you know a physician who is interested in joining our medical staff, call Tom Evans at (718) 670-8714.


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


People News

We are pleased to announce the following appointments to our medical and professional staff:

We welcome Marie-Laure Romney, M.D., attending physician, Emergency Medicine, and faculty member, Emergency Ultrasound program. Dr. Romney received her medical degree from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Camden, N.J. She completed her residency training in Emergency Medicine at New York University/Bellevue Hospital Center, New York, NY, and was a fellow in Emergency Ultrasound at SUNY Downstate/ Kings County Hospital, Center, Brooklyn, NY. Her academic interests include emergency ultrasound, patient simulation training and medical education.

It is an honor for us when our hospital team members are recognized by other organizations and when they attain professional achievements:

James W. Turner, M.D., chairman,
Department of Surgery, has been named the 2011 recipient of the Theresa Lang Award. Dr. Turner has devoted his career to delivering quality care and education to patients, families, students and colleagues. His desire to continuously and measurably improve quality has further distinguished his years of service at New York Hospital Queens. He will be presented with this award at the Theresa Lang Dinner on November 7.

The Theresa Lang Dinner was introduced in 2006 to launch the 50th Anniversary of the founding of New York Hospital Queens. It is named in honor of Theresa Lang, a volunteer, philanthropist and member of the Board of Trustees. For 50 years, until her death in 2008, Mrs. Lang worked tirelessly to bring the hospital to the forefront of community health care across the country. The Theresa Lang Award recognizes a leader of the medical staff at New York Hospital Queens for outstanding achievement in research, medical education or patient care. 

Congratulations to Burton Wasserman, D.D.S., chairman, Department of Dental & Oral Medicine, on being selected by the Queens County Dental Society (QCDS) Board of Trustees as the 2011 recipient of the Emil Lentchner Distinguished Service Award. The Lentchner Award is the highest honor bestowed by QCDS to a member in recognition of outstanding character and service to the Society and the dental profession.

Charles Lombardi, D.P.M.
, director, Podiatric Medical Education and Podiatric Surgery, has been re-elected as vice president, National Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners (NBPME). The board oversees and develops the licensing exam for all podiatry students. He was also appointed chairman of the piloting committee to develop a clinical skills examination. This committee is a collaboration among NBPME, the National Board of Medical Examiners and the Education Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates for the development of a clinical skills examination for all podiatry students beginning in 2013.

Nidhi Garg, M.D., Emergency Medicine resident, was appointed as a reviewer for the “Annals of Emergency Medicine.”

Our physicians and clinical staff frequently present their work on medical conferences and in peer-reviewed publications:

Stephen Rimar, M.D., senior vice president and chief medical officer, will serve as an expert panelist in the “2011 Accountable Care Organization Healthcare Conference.” The conference will take place on November 10 at the Marriott LaGuardia Hotel in East Elmhurst beginning at 8 a.m. To reserve a space at the conference, call (347) 612-6216.

Peter Wasserman, R.D., M.A., metabolic support, Infectious Disease Division, Department of Medicine, Sorana Segal-Maurer, M.D., director, Infectious Disease Division, Department of Medicine, and associate professor of Clinical Medicine, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, and David S. Rubin, M.D., director, AIDS Designated Center, and attending physician, Infectious Disease Division, Department of Medicine, have authored a clinical education monograph for the AIDS Institute of the New York State Department of Health, “Nutrition and HIV/AIDS.” The monograph is available as a slide set at the New York State Department of Health, AIDS Institute website:

Sandy Saintonge, M.D., attending physician, Pediatric Emergency Medicine, and Phyllis August, M.D., M.P.H., Theresa Lang director, Theresa and Eugene M. Lang Center for Research and Education, co-authored “The Development of Building Wellness: A Youth Health Literacy Program.” Their work was published in the Journal of Health Communication (September 30, 2011).

Dr. Saintonge and Todd Mastrovitch, M.D.
, attending physician, Pediatric Emergency Medicine; Emergency Medicine residents Lily Ning, M.D., and Poonam Desai, D.O.; and residency graduates Danniel Stites, M.D., and Jewel Jones, M.D., authored several chapters in the text book, “Fleisher and Ludwig's 5-Minute Pediatric Emergency Medicine Consult” (2011, Wolters Kluwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins).

Jay Gupta, M.D., Emergency Medicine attending physician, was invited to speak at the Christiana Health Department of Emergency Medicine in Newark, DE, on the topic of "Cold Related Injury and Illness."

Alison Suarez, M.D., assistant director, Emergency Medicine residency, addressed the New York Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians’ All NYC Emergency Medicine Conference, on the topic of  “Mesenteric Ischemia: The Ticking Time Bomb in your Emergency Department.”

Al Walther, M.D.
, and Kanwar Rauhila, M.D., attending physicians, Emergency Medicine, served as faculty members of the 7th Indo-U.S. Emergency Medicine Summit that was held in New Delhi, India. They jointly hosted a symposium on emergency cardiology. Dr. Rauhila served as chairman of the plenary session on pharmaceuticals in Emergency Medicine and spoke about patients who come to the ER with chest pain. Dr. Walther discussed the treatment of acute myocardial infarction and chaired a symposium on thrombotic disorders.

Program News

Grants Program Update
New York Hospital Queens was awarded a $75,000 grant by the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services through the FY 2011 Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP). This is our third award from this program. The UASI NSGP is part of the Homeland Security Grant Program, which provides a primary funding mechanism for building and sustaining national preparedness capabilities. Funds will be used to implement a more advanced visitor management system at NYHQ.  

Emergency Department Hosts Physicians Visiting from South Korea
This month, two physicians from South Korea are visiting New York Hospital Queens to learn how Emergency Medicine is taught and practiced in the US and at NYHQ. Jaeho Lee, M.D., is senior resident at Yonsei University Medical Center/Severance Hospital in Seoul and is here for one month. Seunghan Lee, M.D., is senior resident at Chungnam University Medical Center in Taejeon, and joins us for two weeks. This exchange is coordinated by Edward Choi, M.D., attending physician, Emergency Medicine. Dr. Choi serves as the international ambassador to South Korea for the American College of Emergency Physicians.

Deadline Approaching for the Save-A-Life Campaign
The Save-A-Life campaign created by the Women’s Auxiliary and Community Advisory Council (CAC) is raising money to purchase cardiac equipment for our hospital ambulances. Each top-of-the-line cardiac monitor/defibrillator is approximately $30,000. The deadline to enter the raffle in support of the Save-A-Life campaign is November 23.

The new cardiac machines are designed to bring the Emergency Room physician—virtually—to the patient. Vital signs, heart rhythms (ECG) and other important information are wirelessly sent to the receiving hospital. The physician can view the information from a computer monitor at the hospital and give direct guidance to the paramedics and EMTs before the patient reaches the hospital. Hospital staff can also prepare a plan of care before the patient arrives. The machine uses hand-free leads that are applied to the chest to “shock” a patient’s heart back to a normal rhythm. In addition, a patient’s risk of death or brain damage is reduced because the patient’s inner core temperature is carefully monitored.

The Women’s Auxiliary has partnered with the CAC to bring the campaign into the community. The CAC has reached out to local business leaders to secure donations and sell raffles tickets. During recent months the campaign was presented to the Corona Lions Club, Flushing Rotary Club and the Fresh Meadows Homeowners Association

Raffle tickets can be purchased for $10 each. The raffle prizes are a 40-inch flat screen T.V. and a Tiffany & Co silver chain and pendant. Raffle winners will be announced on November 23. To purchase raffle tickets or for more information, please contact Jody Eglinton, president, Women’s Auxiliary, at ext. 1249.


  Improving the Patient Experience through a New Menu System Improving the Patient Experience through a New Menu System
We are continuously updating our technology and services to provide high quality care and improve the patient experience at our hospital. Recently, we adopted a new, electronic menu processor to streamline the intake of patient meal orders. The accuracy of food orders is very important for the safety of our patients. Many patients are on restricted diets or may not be able to have food on certain days. The linking of the device to the electronic medical record helps reduce errors.

24/7 Emergency Room Communications Desk Service for Physicians
New York Hospital Queens is one of the only Emergency Departments in the area to offer the service of a dedicated, 24 hours-a-day, 7 days-a-week communications desk. Effective communication with a patient's primary physician or referring physician in an emergency is a very important component in providing optimal patient care. Physicians are asked to call ahead to our communications desk with the patient’s name and how best to reach the physician. A clerk will record the physician’s call on the Emergency Room’s electronic patient tracking board. When the patient arrives, the Emergency Room physician assigned to the patient will call the referring physician. This step in the process helps avoid miscommunication, lost referral notes and duplicate calls. The Emergency Room Communications Desk can be reached at (718) 670-1100. For more information about this service or our emergency services, call Mark Kindschuh, M.D., associate chairman, Emergency Medicine, at (917) 502-0920 or email him at

How You Can Support Health Care
It’s not too late to support the 2011 HANYS-PAC Campaign. We are past the halfway point to collect donations. We want to emphasize to all our employees that voluntary contributions to this political action committee enables us to have a voice in support of health care in the federal and state government.

HANYS (Healthcare Association of New York State) is an advocacy organization that represents hospitals on issues related to health care policy at the state and federal government level. Elected officials need to understand the challenges we face so they can advocate for the health care needs of New Yorkers. To make a donation to the New York Hospital Queens campaign for the 2011 HANYS-PAC, or for more information, please contact Debra Pagano Cohen, director, Community and Government Affairs, at (718) 670-1586.


Law Enforcement Association Recognizes New York Hospital Queens
The Korean American Law Enforcement Association of Greater New York held a 10th Anniversary 9/11 Memorial event on October 5 at the Koreana Restaurant in downtown Flushing. Honorees included Raymond Kelly, commissioner of the NYPD, Salvatore Cassano, commissioner of the FDNY, as well as Stephen S. Mills, president and chief executive officer. New York Hospital Queens and Mr. Mills were honored for demonstrating dedication to the Queens community during 9/11.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month at NYHQ   Breast Cancer Awareness Month at NYHQ
During the month of October, Breast Cancer Awareness Month, New York Hospital Queens provided free lectures for the community and raised money to benefit the American Cancer Society. The hospital walked as a team in the “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk” (pictured, above) held at Flushing Meadows Corona Park on October 16. The hospital was a corporate sponsor. The hospital held many fundraising activities, such as bake sales and walk pledges, which raised over $8,000 for the American Cancer Society

As part of our month-long Breast Cancer Awareness activities, Susan Lee, M.D., acting director, and Margaret Chen, M.D., assistant director, Breast Center; as well as Jacqueline Xouris, R.N., director, Community Health Outreach, and Lindsay Alico, genetic counselor, The Cancer Center, were among those who provided breast health and cancer lectures at the Bay Terrace Shopping Center in Bayside. Many thanks to all our staff members who supported this initiative.

Sixth Annual Pediatric Miniature Golf Outing  Sixth Annual Pediatric Miniature Golf Outing
We held our annual Pediatric Miniature Golf Classic in October. The event was attended by more than 175 physicians, employees and friends of the medical center. The proceeds, totaling more than $100,000, will be used to support the Child Life Program and the Pediatric Emergency Department. 

NYHQ Collaborates With Assembly Member Grace Meng
The hospital participated in Assembly Member Grace Meng’s Halloween event at her district office. The hospital provided giveaways such as coloring books, crayons and costume “nurse’s caps” for the children in attendance. The hospital also plans to participate in the Assembly Member’s 3rd Annual Baby Shower being held on November 4, for expectant mothers. The event is geared toward those families who are experiencing financial problems and need essential maternity supplies. Staff from the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department will be on hand to greet the families at the event.

FreeMAT Holiday Toy Drive Kick-of
New York Hospital Queens’ FreeMAT (the Freedom Medical Aid Team) kicked-off its 9th annual holiday toy drive. NYC Comptroller John Liu as well as representatives from the U.S. Army will be in attendance. The gifts collected from this year’s community toy drive will be donated to the U.S. Army- 99th Regional Readiness Command (formerly 77th Regional Readiness Command).

The NYHQ FreeMAT (Freedom Medical Aid Team) group has been actively involved in collecting donations for the United States Armed Forces personnel since April 2002. The toys will be distributed to the children of those soldiers who are stationed overseas and will miss the holiday season with their loved ones. There will be several Armed Forces holiday parties in December where the toys will be distributed. FreeMAT partners include local schools, businesses, civic associations and religious organizations. To host a toy drive with your community group or to make a donation to FreeMAT, contact Peter Kwiath, FreeMAT coordinator, at (718) 670-2091.

NYHQ Supports Flu Immunizations in the Community
This flu season, NYHQ has supported the administration of flu vaccinations in Hillcrest and Flushing. The vaccinations were
made available for the community in the district offices of Assembly Members Rory Lancman and Michael Simanowitz.


Continuing Medical Education (CME) to Host Two November Symposia.
Pre-registration is required. To register, contact the CME office at or call (718) 670-1419. These symposia are eligible for continuing medical education credit.

8th Annual Thoracic Symposium: Advances in Benign and Malignant Esophageal Disease   
Tuesday, November 15, 8:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Lang Auditorium.  Benign and malignant esophageal disorders are common. Recent advances in diagnosis and treatment have considerably improved the outlook for these patients. This 8th NYHQ Thoracic Symposium will review current trends and advances in the diagnosis and treatment of these disorders.

Department of Pediatrics: Pediatric GI Day   
Thursday, November 17, 8:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. in the Lang Auditorium. This purpose of this symposium is to provide information to medical professionals on the recent advances in the diagnosis and medical management of children with various gastrointestinal disorders.

Caregiver Celebration Day at NYHQ – November 19, 2011
We have partnered with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society to present a “Caregiver Celebration Day” on Saturday, November 19, from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Topics include, “Caring for Self When Caring for Others,”  “Resources for the Caregiver” and “Coping with Stress.” The event will take place at NYHQ’s Lang Auditorium. The deadline to reserve a place at the event is November 16. To RSVP, call Inez Lendez at (212) 376-4770 or

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