Posts tagged with Lawrence Memorial Hospital

Hearts of Gold Ball funding upgrades to inpatient rehab units

Renovations within the hospital not only improve facilities, they also increase the satisfaction of patients, their families and hospital staff. Some of the LMH associates who work on the fourth floor are Tiew Clippinger, Clifton Sims, Terri Kaiser, Pamela Wingert and Barb Hermreck.

Renovations within the hospital not only improve facilities, they also increase the satisfaction of patients, their families and hospital staff. Some of the LMH associates who work on the fourth floor are Tiew Clippinger, Clifton Sims, Terri Kaiser, Pamela Wingert and Barb Hermreck.

Lawrence Memorial Hospital recently was named one of the nation’s 100 Top Hospitals by Truven Health Analytics. This is the second year in a row that LMH received the honor. Truven Health Analytics conducts research studies, such as the 100 Top Hospitals study, with the goal of improving the cost and quality of health care.
A result of receiving this honor is that the community expects a higher quality of care from LMH. LMH is able to improve patient care because of support from the community.

One way that the community has helped support these improvements to LMH is through renovations, partially funded by the LMH Endowment Association’s biannual Hearts of Gold Ball.

Every other year a different area of the hospital is chosen to benefit from the Hearts of Gold Ball. The 2012 gala raised $350,000 to help finance renovations of the hospital’s 2-North medical unit, where many critically ill patients are treated.

Renovations within the hospital not only improve facilities but also increase the satisfaction of patients, their families and the hospital staff. The second floor has seen this effect since its renovation. “Hearts of Gold impacted the unit incredibly,” says Deborah Rector, director of 2-North. “It is so meaningful for our patients to have a private, therapeutic area where they can rest and heal and can have peaceful moments with their families.”

It is hoped this year’s Hearts of Gold Ball will have the same impact on the fourth floor, the designated beneficiary. The fourth floor is home to two important hospital programs: the acute rehabilitation unit and the transitional care unit, which also is known as skilled nursing. Both focus on patient rehabilitation.

Planned renovations for the fourth floor will include transforming patient rooms to private rooms, moving the dining room and ensuring it has a more home-like atmosphere, and constructing a new family- and patient-gathering area.

Teresa Kaiser, the fourth floor director, said, “The renovation of the fourth floor will help fulfill the community’s expectations for a Top 100 Hospital, and this much-needed upgrade is an investment in the future. If fourth floor receives these needed renovations, both the ARU and TCU programs will better serve patients’ needs in an environment that enhances their comfort, privacy and convenience.”

The 2014 Hearts of Gold Ball is May 10 at the Lawrence Journal-World’s former press building on the 600 block of New Hampshire Street. The theme, “Press On,” is a nod to the ball’s location and reminds the community of the mindset that fourth floor patients must have to persevere as they rehabilitate and heal. Last year, patients spent a total of 6,256 days pressing on toward rehabilitation.

Kathy Clausing-Willis, LMH vice president and chief development officer, said, “We provide world-class care on the fourth floor. We just need the facilities to be able to improve the patient experience.”

Linda Robinson, a co-chair of this year’s fundraising event, said, “The Hearts of Gold Ball is a special way to spend a magical evening of fun and food with friends and colleagues, but more importantly it is a way to help LMH. The proceeds help to enhance and improve upon the services and facilities available to our community.”

To support the renovation of the fourth floor and help LMH maintain its status as one of the Truven Health 100 Top Hospitals, contact Tracy Davidson, development specialist at the LMH Endowment Association, at 505-3318 or tracy.davidson@lmh.org, or visit lmhendowment.org.

  • Margo Bogossian, a Kansas University senior, is an intern for the LMH Endowment Association.
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LMH trustees devoted to quality care

Serving as an Lawrence Memorial Hospital Trustee is not all business, as Cindy Yulich and Allen Belot can attest. In addition to volunteering an average of 20 hours a month in meetings, sometimes trustees get to have a little fun, like judging the LMH Holiday Cookie Contest.

Serving as an Lawrence Memorial Hospital Trustee is not all business, as Cindy Yulich and Allen Belot can attest. In addition to volunteering an average of 20 hours a month in meetings, sometimes trustees get to have a little fun, like judging the LMH Holiday Cookie Contest.

From caring for patients to ensuring the facilities are well maintained to dealing in matters of high finance, it takes a lot of people to run a hospital. But it may surprise many to know that Lawrence Memorial Hospital’s governing board is made up of community volunteers.

Since its inception in 1921, LMH has relied on the guidance of its Board of Trustees to set policies and make decisions that shape the future of health care in Lawrence and Douglas County. The board ultimately has the fiduciary responsibility for the hospital. Nine volunteers meet monthly to strategize about such issues as expansion of services and quality of care. In addition to monthly meetings, each board member serves on various committees that also meet regularly to work on behalf of key functions of the hospital.

Currently led by Chairperson Allen Belot, a Lawrence architect, these generous and highly qualified professionals choose to devote time and talent to help LMH navigate important issues and decisions in the best interest of the community.

Belot says that because LMH is self-funded from its operations and receives no tax support from the City of Lawrence or Douglas County, it’s important to help serve the community’s health care needs as a member of the board.

Appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the Lawrence City Commission, the trustees serve four-year terms. When a vacancy occurred in 2005, Belot jumped at the opportunity.

“My father was a physician at LMH for 50 years,” Belot said. “I have a special place in my heart for our community hospital.” Recent years have brought dramatic changes in growth and expansion at LMH, making the work of the Board of Trustees more challenging than ever.

Having a background in health care or a hospital-related field is not required. New trustees attend a formal orientation, and all trustees participate in ongoing education to stay current with changes facing the health care industry. Each brings a unique skill set that enhances the board as a whole. Those skills include a history of achievement, ability to work in a team-oriented environment, and philanthropy and governance experience.

The trustees also contribute personal attributes such as compassion, independence, intelligence, integrity and objectivity. Each volunteers an average of 20 or more hours per month in committee meetings, education and community meetings and regular monthly board meetings where decisions are made.

Gina Pacumbaba-Watson, now in her third year as a trustee, feels it is an honor. Her experience as an owner of a Lawrence engineering and consulting firm is important, as she leads the facilities committee and serves on the human resources and credentials committees.

“Our role is to bring opinions and insight from the community to allow the staff to make informed, precise decisions,” she says. LMH President and CEO Gene Meyer said, “In my years at LMH I have been very fortunate to work with board members who are committed to what we are trying to accomplish here. Their dedication, insights and support have really contributed to LMH being one of the 100 Top Hospitals in the country.”

In addition to Belot and Pacumbaba-Watson, members of the LMH Board of Trustees are Vice Chairperson Mike Wildgen, Treasurer Rob Chestnut, Jane Blocher, John Bullock, Dr. Lee Reussner, John Ross, Cindy Yulich, and Dr. Eric Huerter, chief of staff, an ex officio member.

The LMH Board of Trustees meets monthly at 9 a.m. the third Wednesday of the month in the hospital auditorium. Meetings are open to the public.

  • Janice Early is Vice President of Marketing and Communications for Lawrence Memorial Hospital. She can be reached at janice.early@lmh.org. Christy Moore contributed to this article.
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Superheroes display powers when volunteering at LMH

Chloe Hays, a Free State High School senior who is a Health Careers Pathways intern,
and Paul Flower, information desk volunteer, volunteer at Lawrence Memorial Hospital.

Chloe Hays, a Free State High School senior who is a Health Careers Pathways intern, and Paul Flower, information desk volunteer, volunteer at Lawrence Memorial Hospital.

Who works 75,102 hours for free?

That would be the 927 volunteers of the Lawrence Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, whose contributions of time and talent support quality health care in our community.

While nearly 400 adults form the backbone of volunteers at the hospital, the LMH Auxiliary is unique across the state and country because of its comprehensive student programs.

Last year, 249 new college students and 66 junior high and high school students interviewed, oriented and trained for a wide variety of volunteer roles at LMH. Volunteer services also placed 221 students as observers and oriented 80 student interns in hospital departments as a means to further the students’ education. Sixty-three students shadowed directly with physicians as part of the physician shadowing program.

Reaumur Donnally, past president of the LMH Auxiliary and current chairperson of the Scholarship Committee, has said, “We are proud that LMH is the place where many bright health care careers begin. We know that we are growing the future of health care for Lawrence and many other communities right here at LMH.”

To that end, the LMH Auxiliary annually awards $1,000 scholarships to three high school students pursuing health care careers, renewable for four years. For the 2013-2014 school year, there are 11 students receiving scholarship funding.

The Auxiliary raises funds through jewelry, uniform and book sales to help support scholarships, but the most notable source of revenue is the LMH Gift Shop. In 2013, merchandise sales at the Gift Shop and Mario’s Closet totaled $382,307, with proceeds after expenses being reinvested in contributions to the hospital.

In 2013 the Auxiliary committed $65,000 to the hospital, to purchase new hospital beds, a new refrigerator for the Lab, and $10,000 from Mario’s Closet proceeds to support the cost of wigs and prostheses for women who cannot afford them. Mario’s Closet is an image renewal center that provides custom solutions for the visible effects cancer and other illnesses can have on the body, including wig and salon services, mastectomy bras and prostheses, skin care products and more, as well as unique gift items.

In 2014, the Auxiliary is opting to do a large three-year gift to the hospital. The total gift of $159,500 will fund replacement of the nurses’ station and four treatment rooms in the Oncology Center, new hospital beds, and renovation of three patient rooms on the fourth floor.

It’s no surprise that the individual and collective contributions by volunteers and the Auxiliary organization to improving the quality of health care at LMH again have garnered statewide recognition. In November, for the second year in a row, the LMH Auxiliary received the Gold Award for Excellence from the Hospital Auxiliaries of Kansas.

This week is National Volunteer Week, which is about inspiring, recognizing and encouraging people to seek out imaginative ways to engage in their communities. LMH has chosen the theme of “Super Volunteers – Heroes at Work” to recognize and celebrate the amazing talents, skills and power of the individuals who dedicate their time in service to others.

While all our heroes in our eyes, last night some special volunteers were singled out for recognition. The Marguerite Lockwood Volunteer of the Year Award was presented to two outstanding volunteers: Lew Nolan and Helen Cobb. Sam Ho received the Ryan Kanost Student Volunteer of the Year Award. Volunteers with top hours in 2013 were Kristine Furlought and Dianna Nelson, each with more than 700 volunteer hours, and Carl Craig with more than 600 hours.

If you are interested in learning more about volunteering at LMH, visit the hospital’s website at lmh.org/volunteer.

  • Janice Early is vice president of marketing and communications for Lawrence Memorial Hospital. For more info, email janice.early@lmh.org.
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