President's Message New York Hospital Queens

APRIL 2011

Dear Colleagues:

How does the recently enacted New York State budget affect New York Hospital Queens?

This new budget is expected to have a significant impact on the delivery of health care services in New York. It includes major cuts to a broad range of vital programs in health and education. And, the cuts may not be over. The budget includes a statewide cap on Medicaid spending. If that cap is exceeded, the Department of Health can implement further cuts. 

So far, this budget translates to a reduction of $4 million for New York Hospital Queens for fiscal year 2011-2012. Included in this reduction is the elimination of the 2011 trend factor and a 2 percent reduction on Medicaid fee-for-service payments effective April 1, 2011. Hoping for the best, but prepared for reductions in 2011 state health care spending, our hospital’s budget included allowances for state spending changes. Our predictions were on par with the actual reductions.

Other proposals passed in the state budget regarding health care include:
  • Implementation of nursing home rebasing and the finalization of a methodology for statewide pricing
  • Home care payment changes
  • Mandatory enrollment of residents into managed care programs
With regard to medical malpractice reform, the budget contains a provision to establish a medical indemnity fund to pay for future health related costs of neurologically-impaired infants. The fund would apply to all cases involving neurologically-impaired infants that have not concluded by April 1, thus covering all cases currently in the litigation pipeline. The previously proposed cap on non-economic damages of $250,000 was not included in the final budget. 

There were some positive gains in the way of overall quality of care improvement for New Yorkers. The budget included provisions for palliative care, pay-for-performance initiatives and expanding the “patient centered medical home” and new models of integrated care, such as Accountable Care Organizations. 

This budget process was unique in that health care providers, labor, government and other Medicaid stakeholders were brought together to form Governor Cuomo's Medicaid Redesign Team (MRT). The State Senate and Assembly passed most of the MRT proposals for the state fiscal year 2011-2012 budget. We remain hopeful that the Redesign Team keeps moving toward full systemic reform.

Thank you to those of you who participated in advocacy efforts with us. Only by working together can we ensure that our voices will be heard by those who will make systemic change a reality.

Sincerely,

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

PEOPLE AND PROGRAMS

People News

We mourn the passing of several people who each left a significant mark on the Queens community:

William C. Cooper, M.D., former director, division of Ophthalmology, was a member of the New York Hospital Queens’ medical staff for more than 17 years, prior to his retirement last fall. He was the first director of the Queens Eye Center and was instrumental in modernizing and expanding the NYHQ Eye Service. He also served as Professor of Ophthalmology at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University. In memory of his lifelong passion for teaching, the Dr. William C. Cooper NYHQ Eye Center Education Fund has been established. Click here to donate to the fund.  


Martin Lubin, M.D. served at the hospital from l971-1999, first in the role of director of Psychiatry, and subsequently as our first chairman of Psychiatry. Dr. Lubin brought his extensive knowledge of psychiatry to our institution, and was responsible for developing the department, which included an 18-bed psychiatric unit, a 15-bed detox unit, and two outpatient clinics.

Stanley J. "Bud" Grant, founder, president and chief executive officer of The Friends of the Congressional Glaucoma Caucus Foundation, began a partnership with our hospital ten years ago that has helped hundreds of thousands of Queens residents receive free glaucoma screening.

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

This month, Michael J. Warhol, M.D., chairman, Pathology and Clinical Laboratories, will be the keynote speaker at the Leica Microsystems Symposium in Manhattan. He will discuss "Immunohistochemistry Historical Prespectives and Future Directives." 

Kerianne Brady, M.D., attending pediatric emergency physician, authored, "Perception and Attitude of Providers Toward Pain and Anxiety Associated With Pediatric Vaccine Injection," which appeared in the February 2011 issue of Clinical Pediatrics. She also co-authored a study that appeared in the February 2011 issue of Pediatric Emergency Care titled, "Low-Risk Criteria for Pelvic Radiography in Pediatric Blunt Trauma Patients."

Research from the Emergency Medicine Department, "Serum Lactate is a Better Predictor of Short-Term Mortality When Stratified by C-reactive Protein in Adult Emergency Department Patients Hospitalized for a Suspected Infection,” was published in the March issue of Annals of Emergency Medicine. The work was coauthored by Jeffrey Green, M.D., former assistant residency director, emergency medicine; Tony Berger, M.D., former chief resident, emergency medicine; and Nidhi Garg, M.D., emergency medicine resident.

Mark Kindschuh, M.D., vice chairman, Emergency Medicine, and his son, William, a sophomore at Regis High School, presented a poster entitled "Comparison of a Hospital-wide Antibiogram to that of an Associated Long Term Care Facility" at the American Medical Directors Association Annual Conference on March 24. William worked as a research volunteer at NYHQ last summer with Carl Urban, Ph.D., director, Infectious Disease Research Laboratory; Webbeh Webbeh, M.D., attending physician, Infectious Disease Division, and Daniel Russo, M.D., Vice President and Medical Director, Silvercrest Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation.

Penelope Chun Lema, M.D., R.D., M.S., director, Emergency Medicine Ultrasound, Jay Gupta, M.D.; attending emergency medicine physician; Anjali Bharati, D.O., attending emergency medicine physician; and James G. Ryan, M.D., residency director, Emergency Medicine, were awarded an inaugural Emergency Medicine Council of Residency Directors Educational Research Grant for their project, “Improved Resident Education in Cardiac Ultrasound after a Multimedia Tutorial.” 

Jose D. Torres, Jr., M.D., attending emergency medicine physician, and Jay Gupta, M.D., attending emergency medicine physician, gave instruction on airway management education at the Innovations in Education Section of the Emergency Medicine Council of Residency Directors Conference in San Diego, Calif. on March 4th. 

Ken Ong, M.D., M.P.H., chief medical informatics officer, presented “The Role of Meaningful Use on Nursing Practice,” at a joint conference held by the Greater New York Hospital Association and the Health Information Management Systems Society. HIMSS is a national, not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting a better understanding of health information and management systems.

David Barlas, M.D., associate residency director, was named a top consultant for 2010 by the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

Program News

NYHQ Dental Implant Center
Prosthodontics is a specialized form of dentistry offered by our Center for Dental and Oral Medicine, that focuses on restoring oral function, comfort, as well as appearance of patients with missing teeth.

Frank Tuminelli, D.M.D., F.A.C.P., director of prosthodontics and program director of graduate prosthodontics at New York Hospital Queens, leads a team of prosthodontics-trained dentists who have the expertise to deal with complex restorations of the whole mouth as well as treating facial deformities. The Dental Implant Center is based at the Family Health Center in downtown Flushing, 136-56 39th Avenue, Flushing, NY, 11355. For more information about services, call (718) 670-1701. The center offers special financing options for patients who lack insurance coverage. Additionally, there is a 25 percent discount for hospital employees. 

NYHQ Cancer Center Receives Achievement Award
The Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons has granted its Outstanding Achievement Award to the Cancer Center at New York Hospital Queens for excellent performance on the commission’s annual on-site evaluation. New York Hospital Queens is considered one of the top cancer programs in the United States by this accrediting body. The award is granted to facilities that demonstrate the highest level of compliance with seven standards that represent six areas of cancer program activities: cancer committee leadership, cancer data management, clinical management, research, community outreach, and quality improvement.

Community Symposium on Bones, Muscles & Joints

Each year, thousands of people in Queens experience disorders of the bones, joints and muscles. The good news is that orthopaedic problems are highly treatable and new surgical techniques have been developed that are less invasive and allow for faster recovery. NYHQ hosted a symposium that featured presentations by the hospital’s orthopaedic and rehabilitation experts (pictured above) on the comprehensive treatment and rehabilitative options offered by NYHQ.

Program Held on Wound Care for Medical Professionals 
The NYHQ Wound and Ostomy Committee hosted an educational program with new information on wound care protocols and products available for wound treatment. The event fostered discussion of the physiology of skin healing, wound assessment and palliative care. 

A Spring Night Gala to Honor Eugene M. Lang
On May 23, 2011, at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in Manhattan, we will celebrate our collective hospital accomplishments at A Spring Night Gala. We will present the 2011 Pacesetter Award to Eugene M. Lang for his support of innovative projects in education, health care and services for under-privileged children. Mr. Lang and his late wife Theresa (Terry, as we knew her) have enhanced the quality and depth of our services to the Queens community with the establishment of both the Theresa and Eugene M. Lang Center for Research and Education and the Theresa Lang Children's Ambulatory Center. Entertainment will be provided by Grammy winner and legendary performing artist, Patti LaBelle. To purchase a table or tickets to this very special event or to participate in our advertising journal, contact Julie Varghese, juv9007@nyp.org or (718) 670-1564.

PROGRESS

Research Grant Award
A clinical research project on “Cognitive Changes in Elderly Patients” submitted by Mitchell Chorost, M.D., director, Surgical Oncology, and associate director, The Cancer Center, was recently awarded an Empire Clinical Research Investigator Program (ECRIP) grant for $220,000. Funds from the GME Reform Incentive Pool in each region of NYS are dedicated by ECRIP to fund clinical researchers. This program encourages teaching hospitals and Graduate Medical Education (GME) consortia to train physicians as clinical researchers to advance biomedical research in New York’s academic health centers.   

Upcoming Symposia for Medical Professionals
Our Continuing Medical Education Department coordinates conferences and symposia to help medical staff stay current with advances in medical practice. Upcoming symposia include:
  • Neuroscience Symposium: Friday, April 15, 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. in the Lang Auditorium
  • Resident & Fellows Lang Research Day: Friday, May 11, 7:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. in the Lang Auditorium
  • Thyroid & Parathyroid Disease - A Review for Primary Care Symposium: Tuesday, May 17, 7:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. in the Lang Auditorium
  • 6th Annual Neonatal Symposium: Thursday, May 19, 8 a.m. - 12:45 p.m. in the Lang Auditorium 
  • Palliative Care Symposium: Friday, June 3, 8 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. in the Lang Auditorium

Our Visibility in the Queens Community

Leading the Charge for New York City Arthritis Walk
Jeffrey Rosen, M.D., chairman, Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, is co-chairing the New York City Arthritis Walk on May 15 in Battery Park, Manhattan. Held every May in conjunction with National Arthritis Month, thousands of people come together to walk and raise money to help fight arthritis. To join the walk, contact Jordana Bailey at jab9063@nyp.org. 

Business and Community Leaders Come Together for “Go Red for Women” 
The American Heart Association has selected Diane Sixsmith, M.D., chairman, Emergency Medicine, to serve as chairperson for the 2011 Go Red for Women Breakfast in Queens. This annual event brings together a diverse group of Queen's top business and community leaders. Cardiovascular disease claims the lives of nearly 500,000 women in the U.S. each year. To raise awareness, the American Heart Association created Go Red For Women - a passionate, emotional, social initiative designed to empower women to take charge of their heart health. The breakfast will take place on June 9 at the Sheraton LaGuardia East Hotel in Flushing. Click here to learn more about the event.  

NYHQ Co-Sponsors Flushing Easter Egg Hunt
For the second year, New York Hospital Queens will co-sponsor the “Annual Easter Egg Hunt.” The event is coordinated by New York State Assembly Member Grace Meng and is being held at Flushing’s Bowne Park on April 23 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. The event is free, open to the public. Hundreds of Flushing residents are expected. 

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