HOLYOKE & NORTHAMPTON — Awards and new members made headlines at two Cooley Dickinson annual meetings held Tuesdays, Oct. 29 and Oct. 17.
More than 150 people attended the 127th Annual Meeting of the Cooley Dickinson Board of Trustees Tuesday, Oct. 29 at the Log Cabin Banquet and Conference Center. The 350-member Auxiliary hosted its meeting Tuesday, Oct. 17 at Cooley Dickinson Hospital.
Craig Melin, Cooley Dickinson president and chief executive officer, received the William E. Dwyer Distinguished Service Awards. The Dwyer award is given each year to outstanding individuals whose service on behalf of Cooley Dickinson exemplifies loyalty, leadership, and dedication to improving the health of our community.
Cooley Dickinson Board Chair Matthew Pitoniak told Cooley Dickinson Annual Meeting attendees, “there are not a lot of board chairs who have the privilege of recognizing a CEO for 25 years of service, as the average tenure of a hospital CEO is around 5 and a half years. Fortunately for Cooley Dickinson and our community, Craig is in his 26th. Our health system is a much different and far better than what he found when he arrived in 1998.”
Of Melin, James Donnelly, MD, said Craig effectively led the change for improvement on all fronts. “Cooley Dickinson now stands as the only hospital in Massachusetts to achieve five consecutive years of Healthgrades Patient Safety Excellence Award, putting us in the top 5 percent in the nation for patient safety. And twice I’ve witnessed Craig chart the course for Cooley Dickinson with two top academic medical centers, first Dartmouth-Hitchcock and this year with Massachusetts General Hospital.”
Nominated by her colleagues, Robin Kline, director of volunteer services, received the BECOME award, a recognition that celebrates an employee who models the Cooley Dickinson organizational values. “Robin directs over 300 volunteers and also oversees the activities of the CDH Coffee and Gift Shops. She seems to know, by name, all the volunteers, but if you ask her she will tell you it’s the volunteers that make her job easy,” said OB Clifford, former Auxiliary President.
As with the BECOME Award, recipients of the inaugural Medical Staff Awards were nominated by their colleagues.
The Medical Staff Clinical Excellence Award is given by the Cooley Dickinson Hospital medical staff to the physician who has achieved significant improvement in clinical outcomes. George Hartnell, FRCP, FRCR, interventional radiologist, has done that by, in the words of one nomination, “improving patients’ quality of life and providing medical interventions that are rarely found at community hospitals.”
Through his clinical acumen and technical skills, Hartnell has allowed physicians at Cooley Dickinson to achieve significant improvements in clinical outcomes.
Hartnell specializes in the treatment of vascular diseases as well as minimally invasive treatment of cancers of the liver and kidney. He is board certified in diagnostic radiology and holds a certificate of additional qualifications in vascular and interventional radiology. He is also a Fellow of the Society of Cardiovascular and Interventional Radiology and the American College of Cardiology. He joined Cooley Dickinson in 2008.
The Medical Staff gives the Teamwork Award to the physician who demonstrates a highly developed ability to bring teams of clinicians together to improve care. In nominating Dirk Stanley, MD, colleagues pointed out Stanley demonstrates a true commitment to clinical care and information technology. “Such excellence has made it possible for the CDH Medical Staff to embrace 21st century medicine, which includes computerized order entry, medication reconciliation, and also helps doctors feel at ease with today’s technology,” wrote one nominator.
Stanley is a hospitalist, a physician who takes care of hospitalized patients, and the Chief Medical Informatics Officer. He joined Cooley Dickinson in 2007.
Jay Sprong, MD received the Medical Staff Patient-Centered Care Award. The Medical Staff makes this award to the physician who demonstrates a high level of empathic care and always looks to the patient's values to guide decisions. In nominating Sprong for the Patient-Centered Care Award, a colleague described him as “a life-long advocate for moms and babies.” Another wrote, “Dr. Sprong ensures his patients’ comfort and well-being always come first, noting countless acts of caring, professionalism with a personal touch, and his ability to help patients through life-altering health experiences with compassion.”
Sprong is board certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology. He joined the hospital’s Medical Staff in 1977.
The Medical Staff Nursing Care Excellence Award is given by the Cooley Dickinson Hospital medical staff to the CDHCC nurse who best represents teamwork with physicians to drive best clinical outcomes. Cindy Baecher, ICU and Telemetry clinical nurse specialist, was commended by a nominator as championing life-saving outcomes for unstable/critically ill patients. “Cindy has worked tirelessly with CCU doctors and nurses to help develop procedures that, after sudden trauma, save patient’s brain function or prevent uncontrollable bleeding. Cindy has been instrumental in life-saving outcomes.”
Baecher joined Cooley Dickinson in 2001 as a registered nurse on the critical care unit.
HOSPITAL BOARD OF TRUSTEES
The Nominating Committee of the Board voted its officers for the Fiscal Year ending Sept. 30, 2014: Matthew Pitoniak, Chair; Sanford Belden, Vice Chair; Kevin Lake, Secretary; Charles Staelin, Treasurer; Edith Peter, Assistant Treasurer; and Craig Melin, Assistant Secretary. Board members include: Sanford Belden, Kenneth Bordewieck, Stephen Cavanagh, James Donnelly, MD, William Gorth, Kevin Lake, Craig Melin, John Nunnelly, Matthew Pitoniak, Danielle Ramdath, Nancy Reeves, Henry Rosenberg, MD, Margaret Russo, MD, Kathleen Scoble, RN, Peter Siersma, MD, Charles Staelin, John Todd, Margo Welch, and Geoffrey Zucker, MD.
In addition, five Massachusetts General Hospital trustees became part of the Cooley Dickinson Board of Trustees when the acquisition of Cooley Dickinson became official July 1, 2013. Appointed are Michael Blute, MD, David Brown, MD, Tony James, Elizabeth Mort, MD, and Peter Slavin, MD.
AUXILIARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES
The Auxiliary also elected the following officers for two-year terms: Pauline Marney, president; Lisa Ducharme, vice president; John Favaro, Jr., treasurer; Hazel Waller, assistant treasurer; Marianne Gambaro, recording secretary; Susan Myers, corresponding secretary.
The mission of the Cooley Dickinson Hospital Auxiliary is to support patient services, support volunteer services, advocate for the hospital, provide educational programs, and raise funds through such projects as the hospital’s coffee and gift shops, corridor art galleries, and the fashion show.
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