Annual Hospital Foundation Gala attendees bask in "South Pacific Sunset"
April 11, 2014
The Hospital Foundation of Decatur County held its Seventh Annual Fundraising Gala last Friday to benefit the projects and programs of Decatur County Memorial Hospital (DCMH).
Nearly 350 attendees were transported to 1940s Polynesia, with the theme “South Pacific Sunset.” Hula dancers welcomed guests, while an Andrews Sisters tribute group harmonized to “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy.” There was also a pacific barbecue display taken straight from a luau.
This was director Bryan Robbins’ first time overseeing the event, which was started in 2008 under previous director David Fry.
Robbins characterized the evening as “quite an endeavor,” one that takes months of planning: “Everyone said it took a large effort, and they were right. It truly highlights the importance of a great support group, and luckily the committee I had this year went above and beyond to make it happen. None of this happens without them.”
Robbins also pointed out the involvement of the various DCMH departments in the silent auction, where each sector was asked to fill a small wooden crate with items they would want if stranded on a deserted island. “There was a lot of creativity in those crates, and it was neat to see what each department delivered. I think the attendees enjoyed investigating every little object they included.”
Another big promotion was the “Cash for Cards” game sponsored by Morning Breeze Retirement Community & Healthcare Center. Participants purchased replica vintage World War II postcards to win prizes ranging from $25 to well over $100. “Last year it was picking grapes; this year it was selecting postcards,” Robbins said. “It’s always a popular promotion and a fun way to show support for the Hospital Foundation. It was especially great that Morning Breeze was able to be the sponsor again this year. The folks there are wonderful, giving both time and funding to make this a reality.”
Indiana Critical Care Facility's Focus on Community Yields Impressive Results
April 2, 2014
When Decatur County Memorial Hospital, a critical-care facility in Greensburg, Ind., was planning its mission goals for 2014, the hospital leadership decided to focus on culture, quality, service, and finance from both an internal and an external perspective. They also wanted to better define the plans for the hospital and work on branding it in a fresh, new way.
But above all, Decatur County Memorial Hospital was concerned with one vital component of its operations: how it related to the community.
“We are an organization that is in the county,” Lynzee McDowell, marketing and communications manager of Decatur County Memorial Hospital, said. “We are a small hospital. Really everything we do is for our community. We don’t want to just guess their needs and the services they want.”
To effectively communicate with the community, Decatur County Memorial Hospital set up four focus groups. The leadership wanted answers to such questions as, “How can we satisfy our patients?” and “How can we provide safety for visitors and their families?”
As a result of the feedback received from these focus groups, the hospital was prompted to build a new medical surgical unit, and its vendors were prompted to enhance the security of the facility to ensure that all parties would be accounted for when on the hospital campus.
“Really there has been an overall cleaning up of the structure within,” she said. “We’re focused on making it a comfortable place for our community to come and making it the hospital they choose for their healthcare needs.”
Acting on the community’s advice
One of the pieces of feedback that motivated Decatur County Memorial Hospital to build a new surgical suite was dissatisfaction with the semi-private rooms in the old unit. The new unit now has 22 private patient rooms with bathrooms and different amenities designed for both patients and their visitors.
Another improvement motived by the focus groups was an investment in new signage.
“We know that a big part of patient satisfaction is being able to find your way around a place that is unfamiliar,” McDowell said. “We’re going to work on getting signs in place so that people know where they’re going.”
Branding has also taken on a new meaning for Decatur County Memorial Hospital. The organization is aiming for its brand to be more than just color, font, and a logo. Its brand has to expand on the slogan, “The quality care you want close by.” The leadership envisions the hospital brand as being an answer to the question, “What are we to this community?”
Therefore, the focus groups were only the beginning of Decatur County Memorial Hospital’s outreach to the community.
“Everything we do we try to do local,” she said. “Whether it’s partnering with another organization or it’s purchasing signage, we really want to give back to the community and make them feel that not only are we here for you to come to us, but we want to come to you and support you as well.”
Developing a culture of wellness
Creating community wellness has become a major focus also. Because Decatur County Memorial Hospital sees itself as the primary healthcare representative in town, the leadership firmly believes the hospital should be setting the standards and pace for wellness.
Over the last few years, the hospital has focused on an employee wellness initiative and has hired a wellness coordinator who works up different activities and competitions to promote good health among employees and develops educational material on staying healthy, along with weekly weigh-ins and measurements.
The wellness initiative has paid off in dividends, McDowell said. In August, Decatur County Memorial Hospital was named the healthiest workplace in Indiana for the 100 to 499 employee range.
Then, in February of this year, the hospital was named the No. 2 healthiest workplace in the nation. The organization also received a Community Engagement Award, largely for its Healthy Fair, the LiveWell wellness program, and the StayWell initiative through which the hospital partnered with local schools to provide screenings and other services by way of a third-party payer.
“The awards are certainly accomplishments,” she said, “but the programs we’ve put in place while winning those awards I think is more of an accomplishment to me and it says something about the hard work that the staff has really put into everything.”
The StayWell initiative relied heavily on Decatur County Memorial Hospital’s two physician offices, Tree City Medical Partners and Primary Care, to help with the development of the program. Both offices willingly extended their hours and accepted greater patient volumes to accommodate the needs of additional patients.
Furthermore, unlike other hospitals in the region, Decatur was able to offer free flu clinics, both standing and drive-thru, to the community and surrounding counties.
McDowell pointed out that the changing healthcare environment prevented many hospitals from offering this service for free and in many cases, it was eliminated altogether.
This is another reason, she said, why “rural hospitals are not to be looked over.”
A small hospital of great ambition
Despite being in a small town, Decatur County Memorial Hospital doesn’t view itself as a small-town hospital. Instead, it seeks to be as thorough and complete a healthcare resource as its big-city counterparts.
For example, the hospital has the highest-grade CT scanner in the area, digital mammography units, bone-density scans, visiting cardiologists across several subspecialties, two hyperbaric chambers that require no physician referrals, a wound care center, pediatric therapy, and a speech clinic.
McDowell said she reminds colleagues she encounters at conferences and professional events that rural hospitals are just as innovative and sophisticated as the sprawling health systems of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas.
“Rural hospitals are really staying up with the times and showing that we can be just as great and very comparable,” she said. “We offer the same things that one might expect from a big-city health system.”
DCMH Highlights programs during National Nutrition Month
April 1, 2014
Greensburg Daily News — In March, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics invited the country to “Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right,” through the academy’s annual observance of National Nutrition Month.
Decatur County Memorial Hospital (DCMH) dietician Holly Pray and Marketing & Communications manager Lynzee McDowell were all too happy to accept that invitation and extend it to both hospital employees and to the community at large.
In a recent interview, McDowell told the Daily News, “DCMH offers several programs throughout the year that focus on all types of wellness: physical, financial, environmental and more. As we (DCMH) celebrate National Nutrition Month, we see March as an opportunity to highlight the many nutrition-related programs and services we offer our community.”
Among the initiatives Pray and McDowell worked and promoted in March is DCMH’s just-concluded “LiveWELL” program. LiveWELL, Pray explained was created in 2012 as a way to promote a healthy lifestyle at DCMH and in Decatur County at large.
DCMH Family Practice physician Jennifer Fletcher, MD, has participated in LiveWell and achieved impressive results.The 2014 edition, Pray explained, started in January and ran continuously through March 31.LiveWELL focuses on four elements of Living Well, including nutrition, fitness, physiological well-being and technology.
Participants in the program met with Pray one-on-one every other week throughout the three-month period to consult on a number of health-related measures, including activity levels, amount of sleep and sleep efficiency, and weight levels.
Each participant, Pray said, was provided with a BodyMedia Armband to wear during the program, the same device used on TV’s “The Biggest Loser.” According to the BodyMedia website, (http://www.bodymedia.com) the armband is a biometric device that provides round-the-clock data regarding calories eaten and burned, sleep and sleep quality, and activity and fitness levels. Pray used the biometric data to help continually customize each LiveWELL participant’s program.
Expanded Board Guides DCMH
March 27, 2014
Decatur County Memorial Hospital (DCMH) has responded proactively to the transitions in healthcare by expanding its Board of Trustees to meet the changing needs. Thursday evening marked the first official meeting for the newly expanded DCMH Board.
In the fall of 2013, long-time board members, Toni Collins and Tim Nobbe announced their retirement from the Hospital Board and they served in their final meetings last month. Over a combined 30+ years of service Collins and Nobbe helped guide significant changes, including multiple building projects, service enhancements, national and state recognitions and many more positive initiatives for the Hospital. Many on the DCMH team have expressed appreciation for their decades of leadership and involvement.
“The expectations for a Hospital Board of Trustees and their governance have grown exponentially over the years,” commented DCMH President and CEO, Linda Simmons. “Expanding regulations, the changing environment and additional committees have increased demands on the time of our Board. As a result, they recognized the need to involve individuals from the community with diverse backgrounds and resources who could help with these additional responsibilities.”
The DCMH Board approached the Decatur County Commissioners regarding the expanded roles and made the recommendation to increase the size of the governing body from seven to nine total members as allowed by Indiana statute. Once approved, the replacement of Nobbe and Collins required that four new members be appointed by the Commissioners. The Board conducted an extensive search process for those to be recommended to the County for appointment and as a result, seven names were presented for consideration.
The new members of the DCMH Board of Trustees appointed by the Commissioners were:
Darren Evans, VP/General Manager MEMS Group, Hill-Rom
Laura Johnson, Kindergarten Teacher, South Decatur Elementary
Carrie Stapp, VP/Director of Marketing, MainSource Financial Group
Steve Stringer, CPA/Tax Manager, Blue & Co., LLC.
Dr. Jennifer Fletcher, Tree City Medical Partners, was elected Medical Chief of Staff at the end of 2013 and replaced Dr. Noel
Mungcal who had served for two years.
Existing members continuing their service on the DCMH Board of Trustees include John Corya, Reuben Kissel, Dr. Mary
McCullough, and Scott Simmonds.
The new Hospital Board of Trustees started their chapter on Thursday with a team diverse in age, gender and occupations, ranging from marketing to teaching, accounting, law and farming. They remain proactive in meeting the needs of the community by insuring DCMH is responsive and connected to the community, keeping patients, community members and hospital employees’ best interests in mind.
Decatur County Memorial Hospital opened in 1922 and has served the area 24/7 for over 91 years with a broad range of inpatient and outpatient services. More information regarding the Hospital and its services may be found at www.dcmh.net or by phoning the Hospital at (812) 663-4331.
Hospital Foundation Fundraiser set
March 19, 2014
Greensburg Daily News
COLUMBUS – The Annual Hospital Foundation of Decatur County gala is just around the corner, and we'd like you to experience a "South Pacific Sunset."
It's the social event of the season and marks our largest annual fundraiser. The gala takes place Friday, April 11, with all proceeds benefiting the work of Decatur County Memorial Hospital. You can enjoy a delicious dinner by Lemley's Catering, entertainment from the Ladies for Liberty and Cox Brothers, dancing with Indy Hula, our Cash for Cards activity and so much more.
For information or reservations visit dcmh.net/gala or phone our Hospital Foundation office at 663-1220. It's an unforgettable night for a great cause.
Hospital Foundation Grants Fund Community Health Programs and Services
March 7, 2014
Greensburg Daily News - Decatur County Memorial Hospital (DCMH) received $12,290.50 in grants from the Hospital Foundation of Decatur County to support programs and services. The funds are raised by the Hospital Foundation through the daffodil project, special events such as the Gala and Golf Outing, and through individual donations and bequests.
Programs receiving funding this round include:
Tree City Medical Partners was awarded $1500 for the purchase of an automatic urine chemistry analyzer. The new equipment will allow for comprehensive point -of-care urinalysis in routine testing, detection of early kidney disease and HCG pregnancy testing to improve clinical decisions. This system can also connect directly into the patient’s electronic health record, providing instant assistance in the analysis process.
The Marketing Department will be saving on outsourcing by taking higher-quality and wide angle photos through the purchase of a fish-eye camera lens and a backdrop. The lens will also allow for virtual tours on the DCMH website and allow for additional artwork throughout the hospital, while the backdrop will enable staff photos to be taken in-house. The department was awarded $500 to make the purchases, with the hope that the money saved by in-sourcing can be transferred to other marketing options and events.
The Hospital Foundation awards small grants of $500 and under to additional projects without counting against the applying department’s per annum limit.
The Marketing department also received $4000 to fund free screenings to the community during the various Healthy Fairs held during the year. This programming provides free healthcare and screenings to those who cannot afford it otherwise, while educating community members on healthier living and lifestyles. The family-fun events encourage community members to take preventative action with their health, and to take advantage of services from DCMH.
The Hospital Foundation is a proud sponsor of the community Healthy Fairs each year, and was pleased to learn attendance and participation is increasing each year.
With patient and visitor safety, security, and trust of paramount importance at DCMH, the Hospital Foundation awarded the Security Committee $2090.50 to purchase equipment associated with the new Vendormate Non-employment Tracking System. This program will replace inefficient guest monitoring procedures with computerized kiosks for check-in and badge printing. Patient-related guest will not apply to the system, which will be established to monitor vendors and contracted workers as they enter and exit the facility.
DCMH’s Rehabilitation Services was awarded $4200 to add additional comfort to those suffering from lymphedema. Lymphedema is swelling that commonly occurs with any cancer or treatment for cancer that affects the lymph nodes, and with this funded project DCMH therapists in coordination with the Cancer Care Clinic will be trained in the management of the side effect.
Equally, funds will pay for massage therapy services to help reduce the side effects of chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
These advancements will enhance the comprehensive treatment offered to cancer patients at Decatur County Memorial Hospital.
According to Bryan Robbins, Director of the Hospital Foundation, “The Hospital Foundation felt these projects addressed both community needs and enhanced the services our Hospital and its professionals provide. From patient security, to community health fairs, to the addition of specific therapy services, DCMH continues to advance the health and wellness of our community, and donors to the Hospital Foundation can be proud to be a part of that progress.
The Hospital Foundation Board includes President, Susan Burkhart, Vice-President, Daryl Smith, Secretary, Nancy Sheffer, Treasurer, Cris Reynolds and Board members Cleo Duncan, George Reiger, MarySue McGinn, Joan Eversole, Dr. Mary McCullough and DCMH CEO Linda Simmons.
In upcoming events, the Hospital Foundation’s 7th Annual Gala Fundraiser “South Pacific Sunset” will take place on Friday, April 11th at the Columbus Commons in Columbus. For more information, online reservations, or sponsorship opportunities check out www.dcmh.net/gala or call the Hospital Foundation at 663-1220.
Hospital Foundation of Decatur County Marks Year of Growth
February 28, 2014
reensburg Daily News
GREENSBURG — Based on numbers revealed Thursday afternoon at the Annual Donor Appreciation Luncheon of the Hospital Foundation of Decatur County, 2013 was a year of marked growth for the foundation.
Foundation director Bryan Robbins opened the event with an overview of 2013’s initiatives and events, including the 2013 Annual Gala, which raised $47,000; the annual “Event ‘Fore’ Caring” golf tournament, which added $15,000; and the 2013 Capital Campaign, which funded Decatur County Memorial Hospital’s (DCMH) new Medical-Surgical unit, which was phase I of a two-phase construction project.
That campaign, Robbins announced, gathered funding from 463 donors, raising $1.4 million and recruiting more than 75 volunteers along the way.
Robbins then detailed $50,000 in grant funding allotted to various hospital and community initiatives and programs throughout the previous year, including $10,000 in mammogram assistance; $10,000 for DCMH’s Flu Vaccination Clinic; $5,000 for the EMS MedVaults and Fair Safety; $4,000 for screenings at DCMH’s Healthy Fair; $3,000 for the Spirit of Women Women’s Symposium; and $3,785 for Health fair Screenings.
The remainder of that $50,000 also helped fund DCMH’s therapeutic iPads initiative, its dietary laptops program, and its Mommy Expo and impact concussion management program.
The grant money also helped purchase a new Lifepak 12 defibrillator for the hospital.
DCMH dietician Holly Pray provided further details about the dietary laptops program, while marketing coordinator Lynzee McDowell spoke about June’s Healthy Fair, and Lisa Oldham of Rehab Services gave an overview of the iPad Project for Rehab Services.
The 2014 Annual Report provided dramatic numbers. Foundation revenues in 2013 totaled $196,914.85 versus $169,321.55 in 2012. Expenses incurred in 2013, according to the report – including grants awarded – totaled $132,504.07 versus $146,668.87 in 2012. Net income in 2013 was $64,410.78 versus $22,652.68 in 2012; net assets totaled $1,943,067.11 in 2013 and $731,004.21 in 2012; the hospital collected $169,104.74 in 2013 donations versus $133,383.84 in 2012.
Robbins closed with the formal announcement of the 2014 Hospital Foundation Gala, to be held at 6 p.m., April 11, at Columbus Commons in Columbus. The theme for 2014 will be “South Pacific Sunset.”
After the event, Robbins told the Daily News the Foundation’s success in 2013 is largely owed to increasing support and dedication within the community for the work the organization does.
“People are realizing more and more how important healthcare is for the community,” Robbins said.
Robbins also credited the 2013 Capital Campaign for its efforts in reaching out to and effectively communicating to the community about how important the new Medical-Surgical unit is to the area.
“These are very nice facilities – top notch,” Robbins said. “They’re exactly what our community needs, what our community deserves.”
DCMH CEO Linda Simmons also credited the 2013 Capital Campaign for the Foundation’s success, adding that the Medical-Surgical unit project provided something concrete for the community to get behind and donate to. Unlike donating for a flu clinic or free mammograms – both of which are crucial, critical initiatives, Simmons stressed – a medical surgical building is something Decatur Countians can drive past every day and see, knowing important medical work is being done there and knowing they helped make it possible with their contributions.
Patient Safety Awareness
March 4, 2014
Greensburg Daily News — The National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF) has declared March 2 to 8, “Patient Safety Awareness Week.”
According to NPSF’s website, the event is an “annual education and awareness campaign for healthcare safety,” designed to create awareness in the communities served by hospitals both within the United States and around the world.
At local hospital Decatur County Memorial (DCMH), vice president of patient care Diane McKinney told the Daily News the hospital isn’t holding special events or doing anything out of the ordinary to observe patient safety awareness. In McKinney’s view, no one week of any given year at DCMH can be singled out as being more important for patient safety than any other.
“Every week is patient safety week,” she said.
According to McKinney, DCMH has “all kinds of initiatives and processes in place to insure that [patient] care is safe.”
The hospital, she explained, works through a partnership with the Indiana Hospital Association (IHA), which supplies DCMH with a Federal grant to focus on 10 key areas of patient safety. Those areas include the prevention of hospital-developed infections, DVT (deep vein thrombosis – a specific, serious type of blood clot) prevention, adverse-drug-event prevention, patient-fall prevention and pressure-ulcer prevention (which are caused when a patient lays or sits in one position too long). The 10 IHA key focus areas also include an obstetrics-related (the OB of OB/GYN) emphasis on preventing early-elective deliveries in women less than 39 weeks pregnant.
The 39-week guideline arose from data compiled by the March of Dimes, McKinney explained, which find that, between weeks 36 and 39 weeks of a pregnancy, a baby’s brain undergoes major development.
Teams at DCMH are assigned to address specific measures related to each one of the topic areas, McKinney continued. “And we also have other initiatives in place to make sure that communication with patients and families is optimized,” she added.
DCMH director of marketing Lynzee McDowell, for instance, is working on corridor signs that direct hospital visitors and patients to the proper areas. With the community working to adjust to the new floor layouts implemented by the September opening of DCMH’s Medical/Surgical building, those signs are particularly important at the moment.
The hospital’s main entrance, for example, is no longer located on the facility’s west side (colloquially known as “the gift shop entrance”), but is now on the north side, McKinney said.
Another change DCMH has recently instituted to address patient safety is a procedure known as a “bedside shift report.” According to McKinney, the procedure is fairly self-explanatory; it involves the nurse just finishing a shift holding a sort of mini-conference with her replacement at each patient’s bedside.
A bedside shift report is beneficial in a couple ways, McKinney explained. For one, it facilitates direct communication between the patient’s healthcare providers on the floor, leading to fewer opportunities for mistakes. More importantly, perhaps, a bedside shift report directly involves the patient in his or her own care every time there’s a shift change.
Each time a shift change occurs, McKinney stressed, the outgoing and ingoing nurses are required to confer at the patient’s bedside.
“Our focus is always patient safety – communicating with our patients and our community members,” McKinney said. “I’m confident we’re doing a good job focusing on that on a day-to-day basis.”