Posts by Monique

Special Hospital Unit Prevents Mental and Physical Decline in Elderly Patients

Posted on Nov 29, 2018 in Affiliates, California Pacific Medical Center, Innovation, Quality, Scroll Images, Uncategorized

SAN FRANCISCO“Mom just isn’t the same since she came home from the hospital.”

Wendy Zachary, M.D., a geriatrician with Sutter Health’s California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco, used to hear this complaint often. But since launching the volunteer-powered Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP), her patients are safely going home sooner, are readmitted less frequently and suffer fewer falls.

 

Dr. Zachary and her team opened an Acute Care for the Elderly (ACE) unit at the new CPMC Mission Bernal Campus hospital in August, building upon the success of the HELP program at CPMC’s Davies and Pacific campuses. Mission Bernal’s ACE unit is the first one of its kind for Sutter Health and one of only about 200 nationwide.

Nationally, ACE units have a proven, two-decade success record of helping decrease incidents of hospital complications like delirium, bring down costs, decrease length of hospital stays, improve coordination and mobility and reduce readmissions. This is critical because elderly hospitalized patients are prone to suffering delirium –which, according to Dr. Zachary, has the same risk of mortality as a heart attack.

“We know when geriatric patients are located in the same area of the hospital, such as in an ACE unit, they get better care,” says Dr. Zachary. “This is because the care providers see similar issues over and over, and the more cases you see, the more comfortable you become treating these patients.”

Mission Bernal’s ACE unit offers 19 patient beds, an activity room and a specialized physical therapy room—and staff and volunteers that are specially trained to care for older patients through the HELP program. Read More

Clearing the Air: As Air Quality Improves, Wildfire Smoke’s Health Effects to Linger

Posted on Nov 21, 2018 in Affiliates, Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, Uncategorized

OAKLAND, Calif. -The impact of lingering smoke from the Butte County Camp fire may continue to be felt by Northern Californians for some time.

“Given our experience over the past year with multiple ‘super’ fires in the region—even with the rain clearing the air—we expect to see an increasing number of patients in the emergency department over the next few weeks with complaints related to persistent wildfire smoke exposure,” said Ronn Berrol, M.D., medical director of Sutter Health’s Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, Summit campus, emergency services.

According to Dr. Berrol, historic levels of air pollution caused by the wildfire, which persisted over much of the northern half of the state for two weeks, has begun an inflammatory process that may worsen pre-existing conditions such as chronic lung disease, congestive heart failure or asthma for some people.

When air pollution is bad, it can irritate eyes, nose and throat, cause shortness of breath, aggravate asthma and other respiratory conditions.

William Isenberg, M.D., vice president for patient safety at Sutter Health’s Office of the Patient Experience, offers the following precautions during this time of smoky or poor air:

  • Stay indoors, if possible.
    • Use air conditioning, if available—malls are great places for people without their own air conditioning at home.
    • Keep hydrated— drinking 8-10, 8 ounces glasses of water per day is recommended.
    • Use your maintenance puffers/inhalers if you have asthma, emphysema, or other respiratory diseases
    • Carry your rescue puffer/inhaler with you if you leave your home

 

11 Things You Didn’t Know About the U.S.’s Largest Non-Academic Kidney Transplant Center

Posted on Nov 14, 2018 in California Pacific Medical Center, Expanding Access, Quality, Scroll Images

1. The kidney transplant team at Sutter Health’s California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC) transplanted its first kidney in 1969.

2. In March, the program will celebrate its 50th anniversary and move to its new home at the brand new CPMC Van Ness Campus.

3. More than 6,000 people have received life-extending kidney transplants at CPMC. That’s enough to fill 15 jumbo jets!

4. Not for profit Sutter Health’s CPMC is the largest non-academic medical center transplant program in the country. Over 200 kidney transplants are performed at CPMC annually, making it one of the largest kidney transplant centers in the western United States.

5. CPMC is a pioneer in kidney paired donation. In 2011, the program made history as the first California transplant program to perform five paired donor transplants in one day. A paired donor transplant is when someone donates their kidney on behalf of a loved one so the loved one can receive a compatible kidney from someone else.

6. A software developer/kidney transplant patient collaborated with his CPMC surgeon to create a groundbreaking software program, called MatchGrid, which allows people who are willing to donate their kidney to a friend or relative but are found incompatible to be paired with a matching patient.

 

 

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Tracking Health Data: the Key to Unlocking Prevention of Chronic Disease

Posted on Oct 31, 2018 in California Pacific Medical Center

CPMC Joins Initiative to Improve Care for City Residents

 

SAN FRANCISCO— Sutter Health’s California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC) is joining a San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH) initiative to leverage clinical data from the City’s health systems to better address an array of chronic diseases. Sharing more timely and accurate information about chronic disease in San Francisco will enable the SFDPH to more effectively tackle the greatest burdens of disease in the community.

On World Cities Day, San Francisco Mayor London Breed affirmed her commitment to proven public health policies that prevent deaths and injuries as part of the Partnership for Healthy Cities.

“San Francisco is proud to be a leader in public health, and joining with other cities around the world is a great way to continue to learn, share progress and make improvements,” said Mayor London Breed. “San Francisco’s many efforts – such as addressing food insecurity, reducing new HIV infections, banning flavored tobacco, reducing the consumption of sugary drinks, improving traffic safety, supporting walking and biking, and improving the health of people who are homeless — all add up to making a healthier, safer city for all our residents and visitors. The new Healthy Cities project to share chronic illness data is an innovation that will allow us to make even more progress.”

San Francisco’s proposed partnership between health systems and public health is a powerful one. Chronic illness data from participating health systems such as Sutter Health and UCSF Health, along with the San Francisco Health Network and Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, can help the City identify neighborhoods and areas that need extra attention. The data will also help track in real time whether those efforts are effective.

“Sutter Health’s CPMC is proud to partner on this initiative. Sharing valuable health information about the chronic conditions that we treat in our hospitals and clinics every day, as well as the efforts we make to care for our patients who suffer from them, is an important first step toward improving the health of San Franciscans,” said Sutter Health CPMC CEO Warren Browner, M.D.

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ER on Wheels: Groundbreaking Approach to Stroke Care

Posted on Sep 24, 2018 in Innovation, Scroll Images

BURLINGAME, Calif. –Experts estimate that every minute treatment for stroke is delayed can mean life or death for 2 million brain cells. Strokes are the fifth leading cause of death and the top contributor to long-term disability in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In the Bay Area, not-for-profit Sutter Health’s Mills-Peninsula Medical Center is partnering to pilot a specially-equipped and -staffed ambulance, called a mobile stroke unit (MSU). The goal is to test whether bringing stroke diagnosis and treatment to patients—rather than waiting for them to arrive at the emergency department—improves outcomes.

Mills-Peninsula’s new mobile stroke unit will bring care to patients on scene.

Mills-Peninsula is the first hospital in Northern California to pilot a mobile stroke unit, joining medical centers in New York, Chicago, Cleveland, Houston, Denver and Los Angeles. Read More