St. James Mercy Hospital, Hornell NY
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  News & Events
St. James Mercy Hospital


News Archive 2012-2010



St. James Mercy Hospital Granted $76,300 to Improve Addiction and Dementia Services
November 13, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) announced that it has received two grants totaling $76,300 to refurbish patient and resident areas at the Mercycare campus, specifically for the MATCH program (Mercycare Addiction and Treatment Center of Hornell) and the dementia unit at McAuley Manor. The monies were awarded by Catholic Health East as part of its Heritage Grant program to support projects that improve the environment of care for vulnerable populations. SJMH is a member of Catholic Health East.

The monies will be used in 2013 to refurbish patient bedrooms and showers facilities at MATCH, and to renovate the nursing station and adjacent areas on the dementia unit to allow for a more home-like environment and wait staff-style dining for residents.

"MATCH ministers to some of the most challenged and vulnerable among community residents," said Patricia Uldrich, Chief Nursing Office. "Refurbishing the bedrooms is an essential part of respecting and preserving the dignity of patients who seek help for addiction, many of whom come from dire physical environments, where the small comforts of home are truly a luxury."

Similarly, the Alzheimer’s unit at McAuley Manor is a vital mission service to the community. "Our dementia unit offers compassionate care at the end of life while simultaneously sustaining reverence for each person," said Patricia Dagon, Senior Vice President of Continuing Care. "Our goal is to create a physical environment that is more comfortable and home-like for our dementia residents."

The 20-bed MATCH program provides inpatient and outpatient services for individuals in a three-county area. McAuley Manor is a 120-bed long-term care facility, with 40 beds dedicated to residents living with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.

"For both programs, transforming the physical environments of care will lead to better, more meaningful relationships between direct caregivers and patients and residents," said Sylvia Bryant, Vice President of Mission Integration and Community Outreach. "These grants will allow us to further empower these vulnerable populations to achieve optimal health and quality of life while in our care." For more information visit www.StJamesMercy.org .




St. James Mercy Boosts Patient Satisfaction Scores
November 6, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) announced that its patient satisfaction scores have increased significantly over the last year, surpassing the national average in several areas. The improvements are due to an organization-wide effort to enhance the overall patient and family care experience.

The areas where SJMH exceeds the national average include cleanliness/quietness, communication with nurses and doctors, and pain management. "Patient satisfaction comes in many forms," said Patricia Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer. "It’s often the little things that can make the difference between a good and bad hospital experience. Many people across SJMH have focused on improving patient satisfaction, and the scores show that our programs are working."

"Most hospitals measure and report patient satisfaction using an outside source," said Uldrich. "The company SJMH uses mails surveys to approximately one of every three discharged patients, collects and analyzes the responses, and provides us with a monthly ‘report card’ that reflects the percentage of 9 and 10 scores we received. We share the report card across the organization to monitor our progress, celebrate successes, and find additional areas for improvement," she said.


Patient Satisfaction
Patient Satisfaction Scores based on three quarters ending 9/30/12 – reflects percentage of the highest ratings of 9’s and 10’s


The patient satisfaction scores are reported publicly through the national HCAHPS (Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems) system located at www.healthgrades.com or at www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov/ . "The data from these websites lag by as much as twelve months," said Uldrich, "so we post the most current data and report card on our website at www.stjamesmercy.org/quality.shtml under ‘Quality & Safety.’ "

SJMH’s high scores reflect a variety of efforts. "For example, the entire care team—nurses, doctors, pharmacists, therapists, dieticians and case managers—meets as a group every day to review each patient’s progress, to address immediate and future needs," said Uldrich. "This promotes continuity of care and enhances interdisciplinary communication and care delivery, which is vital to promoting the best possible outcomes for the patient and family. The pharmacists also meet with each patient to discuss current medications and any new medications that will be taken at home."

Other efforts include improved pain management protocols, a "quiet please" program, education in interpersonal dynamics, and scheduled calls to every patient within 48 hours of discharge. "Even our computer screen savers remind everyone that compassionate care is the most important aspect of care delivery," she said. "All of these activities—as well as the recent renovations of the parking lots, hallways, and lobby—are contributing to a better experience for patients, families and visitors alike."

Rural healthcare facilities like SJMH often score the lowest in the "would recommend hospital" category, Uldrich explained. "Across the nation, smaller community hospitals struggle with the scores they receive on this question on the survey. Though patients may score the hospital’s services very high on the individual aspects of their experience, the reality is that care for critical medical conditions will be obtained in tertiary care centers that focus on critical conditions," she said. "Since it is a national trend, we believe that patients score community hospitals lower on this category (‘would recommend’) as a way of acknowledging that critical care has to be obtained elsewhere." "We are grateful to the entire staff at SJMH and to our wonderful volunteers, for they all have united in their commitment to improving the quality of service at St. James Mercy Hospital."




Trinity Health and Catholic Health East Agree to Explore Coming Together
October 17, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

NEWTOWN SQUARE, PENN. and NOVI, MICH. The boards and sponsors of Catholic Health East (CHE) and Trinity Health, two leading Catholic health systems, announced today they signed a non-binding Letter of Intent to come together into a unified national health system that will enhance their mission of service to people and communities across the United States. St. James Mercy Hospital in Hornell, NY is a member of CHE.

The consolidation would create a health system that serves people in 21 states from coast to coast with 82 hospitals, 89 continuing care facilities and home health and hospice programs that provide nearly 2.8 million visits annually. More than 87,000 employees, including 4,100 employed physicians, would provide care in the new system.

"Trinity Health and Catholic Health East are strong Catholic health care systems that share a Gospel-based mission and an unyielding commitment to care for people who are poor and underserved," said Sister Mary Mollison, CSA, chair of Trinity Health. "This consolidation advances the vision of congregations of Sisters that founded these health care ministries, addresses the changing health care environment and takes a bold next step for Catholic health care."

"The joining together of Catholic Health East and Trinity Health represents the next step in the courageous journey begun more than a century ago by the women religious of our founding congregations," said Sister Barbara Wheeley, RSM, CHE’s Sponsors Council coordinator. "We are confident this will help preserve and strengthen Catholic health care for generations to come."

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) in Hornell, NY is a member of Catholic Health East. "This Letter of Intent is good news for our organization," said Mary LaRowe, SJMH President and CEO. "Like SJMH, CHE and Trinity share the mission of serving the poor and disadvantaged, and a potential consolidation would strengthen that position. This news does not have a direct effect on SJMH’s working relationship with Guthrie Healthcare System, which is aimed at expanding the availability of healthcare providers in our rural area. We will continue to work with Guthrie to improve access to local healthcare services."

The new system would have annual operating revenues of about $13.3 billion and assets of about $19.3 billion, and would return almost $1 billion to its communities annually in the form of charity care and other programs.

The consolidation will help address the rapidly changing health care environment that requires more focus on population health and the delivery of more coordinated and integrated care and health and wellness services.

The development of the CHE/Trinity consolidation is in its preliminary phase. Over the next few months, the systems’ boards and management will pursue the potential consolidation and conduct due diligence with a goal of reaching a Definitive Agreement in spring 2013.




"Diamonds & Denim" Charity Event Raises $30,000 for St. James Mercy Foundation
October 12, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

The 3rd annual "Diamonds & Denim" charity event to benefit St. James Mercy Foundation was held Saturday, October 6, at the Hornell Golf Club, and raised $30,000. More than 100 guests gathered for an evening of casual dining and dancing to the music of "Future’s Past." A silent charity auction, coordinated by event co-chairs and Foundation board members Lisa Schwartz and Kathy Dessena, featured goods and services donated by 60 local merchants.

According to Sylvia Bryant, Foundation Executive Director, "Diamonds & Denim" has become a local fundraising tradition. "Now in its third year, ‘Diamonds & Denim’ offers a fun evening out to benefit a great cause. Proceeds raised on October 6 will provide direct support to St. James Mercy Hospital."

The highlight of the evening was a drawing for a three-quarter carat diamond cocktail ring, crafted by McHenry’s Jewelers and won by SJMH employee Sue Chapman.

Sue Chapman
John (left) and Julie McHenry (right) of McHenry’s Jewelers in Canisteo present the diamond cocktail ring to winner and SJMH employee, Sue Chapman (center).

"Local businesses and individuals were so generous in support of the Foundation," said Schwartz. "Their donations of goods and services made the silent auction a great success, raising nearly $5,000 that night. We are especially grateful to John and Julie McHenry for their support in making the diamond ring raffle the showpiece of our event."

"Our sponsors and donors are at the heart of the event with many community businesses offering cash, goods and services," said Dessena. Major event sponsors included Bonadio Group, Exigence, Harris Beach, Hornell IDA, Independence Administrators, Lang Agency, Larry’s Latrines, Maple City Discount Liquor, Dr. Irvin Oh, Procair, Simmons-Rockwell Ford, SJMH Medical Staff, Steuben Trust Co., Dr. Bradley Truax, and Universal Health Network. Among the many contributors of gifts and services were Accelerated Events, Ted Adornato, Covered Wagon Tours, Davis Vision, Equinox Broadcasting, Doug’s Flower Shop, Hornell Area YMCA, Hornell Partners for Growth, McHenry’s Jewelers, Scott Slattery Photography, and Sodexo. "We also thank Hornell Golf Club and John Carbone for providing a wonderful venue and fabulous food," said Dessena. A complete list of sponsors is posted online (www.stjamesmercy.org/foundation-ball.shtml).

The evening included music by rock ‘n roll band Future’s Past. "It was a fun party atmosphere, guests and volunteers had a great time, and most importantly, we raised significant funds that will help support local, quality healthcare," said Bryant. "We thank everyone who attended, volunteered and contributed to this successful evening."

For more information contact St. James Mercy Foundation at 607-324-8240 or visit www.stjamesmercy.org/foundation-overview.shtml.




St. James Mercy Foundation Gearing Up for 3rd Annual "Diamonds & Denim" Event
August 28, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)
Diamonds & Denim Poster (PDF)

All are welcome to attend St. James Mercy Foundation’s 3rd annual "Diamonds & Denim" charity event on Saturday, October 6 at Hornell Golf Club, from 7:00 pm – midnight. This casual evening features tapas dining, live music by Future’s Past, dancing, charity raffle, and a chance to win a diamond ring, courtesy of McHenry Jewelers. All proceeds from the evening benefit St. James Mercy Foundation.

"Last year’s Diamonds & Denim event was very successful," said event co-chair and Foundation Board member Lisa Schwartz. "Over 100 people attended, and we raised over $26,000 for the Hospital. We are expecting even greater results this year."

This year features Hornell’s favorite classic rock band, Future’s Past, starting at 9:00 pm. "This band specializes in classic rock ’n roll and will provide a great party atmosphere," said Ms. Schwartz. "The menu includes tapas dining stations featuring hors d’oeuvres, including top round of beef, pasta dishes and desserts...and you really can wear your denim!"

In addition to the drawing for the diamond ring, the night includes a charity raffle featuring gift certificates and products from area merchants. "This will add a fun and exciting element to the evening and help raise more dollars for the hospital," said event co-chair and Foundation Board member Kathy Dessena.

Diamonds & Denim has become a local tradition, according to Sylvia Bryant, Foundation Executive Director. "Already we have strong community support, including McHenry’s Jewelers, who is providing the diamond cocktail ring valued at $2,500 and major sponsors Steuben Trust Company, The Exigence Group, Harris Beach PLLC, and The Bonadio Group. Combined, this support will ultimately benefit the patients, residents and clients who come to St. James Mercy for care."

Tickets to Diamonds & Denim starting at 7:00 pm are $75 per person for the full event and are available at St. James Mercy Foundation office (411 Canisteo St., Hornell) and Hornell Golf Club (473 Seneca Road), by calling 607-324-8240, or contacting lgardner@sjmh.org . Those wishing only to attend the live music starting at 9:00 pm pay a $5 cover charge. All proceeds benefit St. James Mercy Foundation to fund Hospital equipment and program needs. For more information visit www.stjamesmercy.org/foundation-ball.shtml .




Save the Date....Community Health and Wellness Day – October 19
Co-sponsored by St. James Mercy Hospital and Hornell YMCA

Join us Friday, October 19 from 9:30am – 2:30pm at the new YMCA facility at 18 Center St. in Hornell for a day of health exhibits, demonstrations and educational sessions. Health screenings, door prizes, and more! Free admission and plenty of parking. For more information, or to register as an exhibitor or speaker, call (607) 324-8146 or contact lblauers@sjmh.org .

Community Health and Wellness Day at the YMCA
Community Health and Wellness Day at the YMCA coming October 19!

Community Health and Wellness Day at the YMCA

Community Health and Wellness Day at the YMCA




St. James Mercy Hospital Announces Staffing Adjustments
August 28, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) announced that it has implemented staffing adjustments effective August 28, 2012, amounting to the equivalent of 18.25 full-time employees.

"The decision to adjust staffing at St. James Mercy Hospital is a difficult one that we deeply regret having to make," said Mary LaRowe, President and CEO of St. James Mercy Hospital. "SJMH has experienced a continued decline in patient revenue and also significant declines in state and federal funding," she said. "We are committed to assisting the transition for those employees affected by the adjustments through support from Human Resources and Mission Services."

The staffing adjustments will include the elimination of positions, restructure of departments, and reduction in hours. "Employees who are directly affected have been notified, and will be provided support and options for their consideration," said Ms. LaRowe. Employees were informed of the adjustments on August 28.

"We continue to work diligently with partners Guthrie Healthcare System and Catholic Health East," said LaRowe. "Both organizations are committed to the long-term viability of SJMH, and both will continue to support our efforts to manage resources in the face of declining revenue."




St. James Mercy Scholarship Awarded to Amanda Margeson
June 29, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce that Amanda Margeson has been named its 2012 Memorial Scholarship winner.

Awarded annually to one high school senior, the $500 scholarship was established over 20 years ago. To be eligible, the student must be a St. James Mercy employee or child of an employee, be accepted by an institution of higher learning, and submit an application and letters of reference.

Amanda will continue her education at Alfred University, where she will pursue an advanced degree in Business Administration. During Amanda’s high school career at Canisteo-Greenwood Central she was involved in Spanish Club, Art Club, basketball and softball, and was Vice President of her senior class. She also volunteered in various community fundraising projects, and worked at Wegmans...all while maintaining a cumulative GPA of 94% or higher. Amanda already has five college courses to her credit.



L-R: Kevin Margeson, Scholarship Committee member Linda Blauers, Scholarship recipient Amanda Margeson, Committee member Laura Vetter, Heidi Margeson, and Sylvia Bryant, VP Mission and Community Outreach.


Amanda’s parents are father Kevin, and mother Heidi Margeson, who is Patient Financial Services Coordinator at St. James Mercy Hospital.

Four talented and ambitious students applied for the 2012 Memorial Scholarship. St. James Mercy Hospital congratulates Amanda and sends best wishes to her and the other three candidates, as they pursue their careers and continue to serve their communities.




Hospital Auxiliary Contributes $27,250 to St. James Mercy Foundation
June 22, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Forty-three members of the St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) Auxiliary gathered on June 12 at the Knights of Columbus Hall for the annual Auxiliary Appreciation luncheon to commemorate their work on behalf of St. James Mercy Hospital. The Auxiliary also presented its annual gift to St. James Mercy Foundation in the amount of $27,250.

Auxiliary chair, Lynne Freeland, acknowledged the tireless work of the Auxiliary volunteers. "Year after year, Auxiliary members coordinate many fundraising activities and events, including the Christmas Bazaar and Food Fair, and operate the Aquinas Gift Shops," she said. "Every hour and every dollar go directly to support the hospital in enhancing healthcare services in our community."

President and CEO Mary LaRowe acknowledged the Auxiliary for its long-time support of the greater Hornell community. "The Auxiliary has provided an invaluable service to St. James Mercy hospital since its founding in 1904. In fact, the Auxiliary is the largest single donor to the Foundation, contributing over $660,000 since its founding. Auxiliary members make it possible for SJMH to continue its mission of serving the poor and disadvantaged who come to us for care."


Lynne Freeland (left), chair of St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary, presents a check for $27,250 to Mary LaRowe, president and CEO of St. James Mercy Hospital. This year’s Auxiliary gift to St. James Mercy Foundation will help support renovation of the Hospital lobby and the School of Radiologic Science.

A portion of this year’s Auxiliary gift will provide support to two projects at St. James Mercy Hospital: renovation of the main lobby and the School of Radiologic Science.

The luncheon also included recognition of new members Jane Aini, Sylvia Bryant, Sue Christensen, Rita Holmes, Bridgett Mayorga, Joanne Palmesano, Erin Pryor and Louise Wintermute. The group enjoyed a special performance by St. Ann’s School Children’s Choir under the direction of Cathy Reed, and a presentation by Irfan Rizvi, MD, new general surgeon at SJMH.

For more information visit Hospital Auxiliary, the St. James Mercy Foundation or call (607) 324-8240.




St. James Mercy Foundation Welcomes Two New Board Members
June 18, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Two local community leaders have joined the board of directors of St. James Mercy Foundation. Theresa (Terry) Pullman and Kathy Dessena were elected to the board effective April 2012, and will serve a term of four years.

Terry Pullman, Arkport, New York, is a Tax Associate with H&R Block in Hornell, and previously worked as Library Media Specialist at Arkport Central School and Children’s Librarian at Hornell Public Library. Ms. Pullman has served on the boards at Hornell School Employees Federal Credit Union and Hornell Country Club, and volunteered for Arkport Girls Softball and Planned Parenthood of the Southern Tier. She has a BA in English and a Masters in Library Science from SUNY Geneseo.

Kathy Dessena, Hornell, New York, is an Insurance Agent at State Farm Insurance in Hornell, where she was worked for over twenty years. Her volunteer experience includes serving as president and board member of Hornell Area Humane Society, and she currently is on board for the Hornell Area Babe Ruth. Ms. Dessena has a Bachelor’s degree from Fredonia State University.

SJMH Foundation welcomes new board members Terry Pullman (left) and Kathy Dessena
SJMH Foundation welcomes new board members Terry Pullman (left) and Kathy Dessena.

"We are very pleased to welcome Terry and Kathy to the Foundation board," said Sylvia Bryant, Executive Director. "Both bring important leadership experience and connections that will support our fundraising mission in support of St. James Mercy Hospital and its mission of providing quality, accessible healthcare right here in our community."

St. James Mercy Foundation also elected the following officers in April to serve a one-year term: Beverly Gilbert, Chair; Steve Peck, Vice Chair; and Peter Wall, Secretary/Treasurer.

For more information about St. James Mercy Foundation and other volunteer opportunities visit www.stjamesmercy.org or call 607-324-8240.




St. James Mercy Hospital Mourns the Loss of Joseph P. McCormick, MD
May 21, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Colleagues at St. James Mercy Hospital and residents throughout the Hornell community are mourning the loss of Joseph P. McCormick, MD, who died on May 19, 2012 at St. James Mercy Hospital.

A native of Hornell and general surgeon at the Hospital for thirty-three years, Dr. McCormick was a well-known and well-respected professional and humanitarian throughout the area.

"We are deeply saddened by the loss of Joe at our Hospital and in the community," said Mary E. LaRowe, President and CEO at St. James Mercy Hospital. "He devoted his entire professional career to treating and healing thousands of people in the area. Joe was personally committed to our mission of serving the poor and disadvantaged, and was a dedicated and caring humanitarian to patients and staff alike."

Joseph P. McCormick, MD

Upon completing medical school and residency at George Washington University and Medical Center, Dr. McCormick returned to Hornell to serve the community he loved. In addition to his private practice and career at St. James Mercy Hospital, Dr. McCormick had served as a Clinical Assistant Professor in Surgery at University of Rochester School of Medicine/Strong Memorial Hospital, President/Member of Steuben County Medical Society, and was a member of the Medical Society of New York State, Rochester Academy of Medicine, and Rochester Vascular Society.

"He generously gave of his time to activities that benefited patients, as evidenced by his work as chair of our Ethics committee and his generous and untiring devotion to St. James Mercy Hospital," said Ms. LaRowe. "Joe’s philosophy was to provide the best surgical care to all patients in a caring, professional way. He lived that philosophy every day, and we will miss his compassion, humor and kindness."




St. James Mercy Announces 2012 "Nurse of Excellence" And "Nursing Assistant of Excellence" Awards During National Nurses’ Week
May 17, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

May 6-12 was National Nurses’ Week at St. James Mercy Hospital, highlighted by the announcement of the 2012 "Nurse of Excellence" Award winner, Gary Jones, RN and "Nursing Assistant of Excellence" Award winner, Mary Jo VanSkiver, Nurse Aide.

Mr. Jones is a nurse on the psychiatric unit and has worked at St. James Mercy since 2006. His nomination included accolades such as, "Gary consistently demonstrates solid critical thinking skills as evidenced by his ability to quickly assess a critical situation and begin addressing the most critical issues. He has a calm, rational approach that patients and families respond well to."

Ms. VanSkiver is a nurse aide in the operating room and has worked at St. James Mercy since 1976. In Mary Jo’s nomination she was praised for, her ability to fill in for any job...and she knows how to do them." "The patient comes first with Mary Jo; and because of her very good personality, return patients always ask for her first thing."

Gary Jones and Mary Jo VanSkiver
On left, 2012 Awardees, "Nurse of Excellence," Gary Jones and "Nursing Assistant of Excellence," Mary Jo VanSkiver

The selection process was based on nominations submitted by peers regarding "clinical proficiency, teamwork, service of excellence inpatient care and contributions to St. James and the community." With over 14 nurses and assistants nominated from the Hospital, nursing home, and clinics, the committee was challenged in choosing between these well-qualified and skilled professionals.

The nursing profession is often described as an art and a science that embraces dedicated people with varied interests, strengths and passions because of the many opportunities the profession offers. Nurses have many roles—from staff nurse to educator to nurse practitioner and nurse researcher—and serve all of them with passion for the profession and with a strong commitment to patient safety. Nursing Assistants play a vital role in patient and resident care by assisting with activities of daily living, bedside and nursing tasks. They also develop relationships with patients, residents and their families and assist with many of their needs.

The 2012 theme for National Nurses Week, which begins each year on May 6 and ends on May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, was "Nurses: Advocating, Leading, Caring." St. James Mercy honors all 200 of its nursing staff and thanks them for the spirit of care and service they so readily give.




St. James Mercy Hospital Welcomes Three New Board Members
May 14, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Three community leaders have joined the board of directors of St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH). Susan Gray, Peggy Gorman, RSM, and Eric Weyand were elected to the Hospital board effective April 2012.

Susan Gray of Hornell, New York, is CEO of GSG Consulting, LLC and has extensive experience as a psychologist, educator and administrator. She operates a private practice and has served as superintendent of schools for Hornell and Penfield school districts and as an administrator for the Steuben-Allegany BOCES. Dr. Gray has also taught at the University of Rochester, SUNY Brockport, Alfred University, City College of New York, and Hornell City Schools, and has served as a consulting psychologist for SJMH’s psychiatric care unit. She has a bachelor degree in psychology and French, masters in school psychology and educational administration, and Ph.D in educational psychology.

Peggy Gorman, RSM, is a member of the Sisters of Mercy of the New York, Pennsylvania, Pacific West Community. She joins SJMH with extensive hospital experience, having previously served on the boards of Catholic Health East (of which SJMH is a member); Catholic Health System, Mercy Health System, Kenmore Mercy, and Mercy Hospital (Buffalo); and St. Jerome Hospital (Batavia). Sister Peggy also served as president of the Sisters of Mercy, Regional Community in Buffalo; board chair at Mt. Mercy Academy; and was a teacher and principal at various Catholic schools in the Buffalo area. A certified chaplain, she has a bachelor degree in education from Medaille College and masters in education/administration from Marygrove College. Sister Peggy resides in Buffalo, New York.

Eric Weyand of Hornell, New York, is the founder and Director of Research and Development of AIMS, Inc. (Animal Identification and Marking Systems), a manufacturer of research products in Hornell since 1998. Dr. Weyand previously served as an adjunct associate professor of chemistry at Alfred University, and has held various administrative and teaching positions at Rutgers University. He has a bachelor degree in biology from Concord College, masters in natural science from SUNY Buffalo, and Ph.D in biochemistry from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. He also has published numerous works in his areas of expertise.

St. James Mercy Hospital Welcomes Three New Board Members
St. James Mercy Hospital welcomes new board members Susan Gray, Eric Weyand and Peggy Gorman, RSM.

"We are delighted to welcome these accomplished, dedicated professionals to our board," said Mary Fran Wegman, RSM, SJMH board chair. "As St. James Mercy Hospital readies for healthcare reform and the challenges and opportunities that go with it, we will look to these individuals and our entire board for leadership and support. They will guide us in our ministry of serving the poor and disadvantaged, to ultimately provide the community with the highest level of quality and service."

SJMH’s volunteer board is comprised of fifteen members drawn from Hornell and surrounding communities in St. James Mercy’s service area, as well as representatives from the Sisters of Mercy, SJMH’s sponsoring community in Catholic Health East.




Hornell Rotary Partners with St. James Mercy Hospital for Community Blood Screening May 19th
May 8, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

The Hornell Rotary Club has engaged the laboratory services of St. James Mercy Hospital for its annual Community Blood Screening. The screening will be offered from 6:00 to 10:00AM on Saturday, May 19th in the St. James Mercy Hospital Cafeteria. Participants should use the Canisteo Street Entrance.

The Community Blood Screening Program serves as an early warning system for residents in identifying current or potential health problems. A comprehensive blood screening is conducted for a $35 fee with the results sent to the participant’s physician. Additional screening for prostate cancer is available for an additional fee as well.

To register, please contact St. James Mercy Hospital at (607) 324-8092 between the hours of 9:00AM to Noon or 5:00PM-7:00PM, Monday through Friday.



Public Health Department Needs Your Help to Determine Health Care Needs over Next 5 Years

Your Public Health Department is conducting a survey to determine how best to meet your health care needs over the next five years. They are asking residents to tell them what they think about health-related needs in their County. The results will help to shape health priorities in your County over the next few years. To get started just click on the link below and then click on your county link.
Start survey here »




Lions Club Radiothon Nets $2,500 for St. James Mercy Hospital Foundation
May 1, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) Foundation announced that it has received $2,500 in proceeds from the Maple City Lions Club annual radiothon held on February 25, 2012.

Hosted by Hornell station WLEA, the event was designed to feature community services provided by St. James Mercy and encourage donations to support the Hospital. SJMH staff Diane Griffin, Bonnie Button, and Patricia Uldrich participated in the live broadcast, providing information to listeners on the Lifeline personal emergency response system, Diabetes Self-Management program, and Behavioral Health services.

According to Sylvia Bryant, Vice President of Mission Integration and Community Outreach, "St. James Mercy Foundation is pleased and honored to partner with the Maple City Lions Club’s annual radiothon. Thanks to the Lions commitment and the support of the Hornell community, the Foundation has received a wonderful gift that will be used to support vital equipment purchases for the Hospital, furthering the scope of quality healthcare programs and services to community residents."

Lions Club Radiothon Nets $2,500
Pictured are (left) Bill Moran, Radiothon program chair; Sylvia Bryant, SJMH vice president of Mission Integration and Community Outreach; and Bill Peisher, Maple City Lions Club president.




St. James Mercy Hospital Unveils New Adult Psychiatric Unit
April 25, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) unveiled its newly renovated and relocated 26-bed Adult Psychiatric Unit at a public open house on April 24. The new unit is expected to officially open for patient care in the next few weeks, upon completion of final regulatory inspections.

The new 12,500 ft2 Adult Psychiatric Unit is located in the 3 West wing on the Hospital campus in Hornell, and includes eighteen patient rooms (including airborne isolation and handicapped accessible space), two group activities rooms with kitchen, group therapy area, two "comfort" rooms, exam room, and family visiting area.

According to Patricia Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer, "Our key goals with this project were to create contemporary space to unify SJMH’s adult inpatient psychiatric services, improve the care experience for patients and their families, and meet or exceed all NYS life safety standards."

The benefits of the new unit are many, said Raja Rao, MD, Chief of Psychiatry. "The sleeping, quiet room quarters, and inpatient day treatment are now located on the same floor. This enhances overall safety and allows better management of patients who have co-existing medical problems. The two ‘comfort rooms’ feature multi-sensory stimulation tools to help patients learn stress-reducing behaviors, and the larger family space provides more comfort and privacy with a relaxing atmosphere," he said.


APU ribbon cutting

Left to right: Patricia Uldrich (Chief Nursing Officer), Gina Reagan (Director of Behavioral Health Services), Raja Rao, MD (Chief of Psychiatry), and Mary LaRowe (President and CEO) cut the ribbon for the newly renovated and relocated Adult Psychiatric Unit at St. James Mercy Hospital.


Initial work on the Adult Psychiatric Unit project began in 2010. Upon approval of a Certificate of Need application by the New York State Department of Health and the Office of Mental Health, pre-construction upgrades were completed, as well as the construction bid process.

"There are many people who contributed to the success of this project," said Mary LaRowe, President and Chief Executive Officer. "We extend our thanks to Pike Construction Co. and their subcontractors, Razak Associates, SJMH Engineering staff, NYS Office of Mental Health, NYS Department of Health, Hornell City Fire Department, and the staff of SJMH who worked diligently throughout the construction. We are also very grateful to our patients, visitors, and staff for their understanding and patience during the loud and inconvenient phases of construction," she said. Funding assistance for the Adult Psychiatric Unit project was provided by Catholic Health East.

St. James Mercy Hospital is a regional leader in Behavioral Health services that provides inpatient and outpatient care for people with emotional, psychological or chemical dependency disorders. SJMH’s Psychiatric services are accredited by The Joint Commission and licensed by the New York State Department of Health and Office of Mental Health.




St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary Recognized for Advocacy Efforts
April 19, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) Auxiliary was recently recognized by the Healthcare Association of New York State (HANYS) for its advocacy efforts on behalf of the Hospital.

The annual HANYS Auxiliary Advocacy Recognition acknowledges auxiliaries that have committed significant time and effort serving as advocates for their health care facilities and communities during the past year. To qualify, auxiliaries must meet specific criteria, such as participation in HANYS’ legislative letter-writing campaigns and community outreach activities. In 2011, SJMH Auxilians advocated with state and federal representatives against cuts to Medicare and Medicaid funding, as well as limitations to the sole community hospital designation.

"Health care auxiliaries play a vital role in New York State’s hospitals, health systems, and communities," said Mary LaRowe, President and CEO of St. James Mercy Health System. "They serve as valuable links between communities and the institutions they serve. Our auxiliary is very active in advocating on behalf of SJMH. We are so fortunate to have this dedicated and talented group, committed to serving the many needs of people who come to us for care."

Led by co-chairs Lynne Freeland and Nan Racalto, St. James Mercy Auxiliary volunteers contribute thousands of hours each year toward advocacy, fundraising and community service projects. Auxiliary volunteers also manage the gift shops at Mercycare and the Hospital.

"We are grateful for the hard work and creativity of Auxiliary volunteers," said Sylvia Bryant, Vice President of Mission Integration and community Outreach. "In 2011 funds raised through Auxiliary events and proceeds from the Aquinas Gift Shops contributed $28,000 to the Hospital – the largest gift in the Auxiliary’s 105-year history." Funds were used in part to purchase new furnishings for the Mercycare Break adult day program and instructional materials for the School of Radiologic Science.

"There are many meaningful volunteer opportunities at St. James Mercy Hospital, and we welcome anyone who wishes to be of service to consider joining the Auxiliary," said Ms. Bryant. For more information call (607) 324-8240, visit www.stjamesmercy.org/auxiliary.org, or email sbryant@sjmh.org .



"Ask the Doctor..." April 26
Part of the "Sharing the Health" Series

Flyer (PDF)

Join us to have your questions answered on a variety of colorectal topics including gastrointestinal conditions, colorectal cancer, incontinence, hemorrhoids, and diverticulitis.

Featuring: Irfan Rizvi, M.D.
General and Colorectal Surgeon at SJMH

Thursday, April 26, 7:00 – 8:00 PM
Hornell Golf Club
473 Seneca Road, Hornell

This educational lecture is free and open to the public. Seating is limited; reservations requested. To reserve a seat call Linda Blauers at (607) 324-8146 by Monday, April 23rd

  St. James Mercy Welcomes Irfan Rizvi, MD, a General/Colorectal Surgeon
General/Colorectal Surgeon




St. James Mercy Hospital Joins NYS "Partnership for Patients"
March 26, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) has joined the New York State Partnership for Patients (NYSPFP), a statewide quality improvement initiative engaging over 170 hospitals in activities to improve quality and patient safety by reducing complications and avoidable readmissions.

"We are delighted to join the state partnership to reduce hospital-acquired conditions by 40% and preventable readmissions by 20% over the next two years," said Mary E. LaRowe, SJMH President and Chief Executive Officer. "This initiative speaks to our mission of providing the best quality care to meet the most urgent health care needs of our rural area."

NYSPFP, a joint project of the Healthcare Association of New York State and Greater New York Hospital Association, is part of a national initiative – the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Partnership for Patients – which seeks to reduce hospital-acquired conditions and preventable readmissions. NYSPFP has invited key New York State health care stakeholders including regulators, consumers, clinicians, health insurers, hospital trustees, and others to contribute to NYSPFP’s statewide success.

NYSPFP will build upon existing quality improvement programs at hospitals across the state, focusing on key clinical areas as well as hospital leadership and culture, to support New York State hospitals as they continually strive to provide safe, high-quality care and improve outcomes.

"We strive to continuously improve clinical care to our patients, residents and clients," said Patricia Uldrich, SJMH Chief Nursing Officer. "The Partnership for Patients at SJMH will involve staff at all sites including clinical, administrative, and allied personnel."

As the CMS Partnership for Patients Hospital Engagement Network for New York State, NYSPFP is responsible for providing participating hospitals with intensive technical assistance, training opportunities, educational programming, and establishing mechanisms to measure and evaluate hospital progress on key clinical and process measures.

For more information about the Partnership for Patients efforts at St. James Mercy Hospital contact Nancy Khork at (607) 324-8114 / nkhork@sjmh.org , or visit www.nyspfp.org .




St. James Mercy Hospital Celebrates "Patient Safety Awareness" Week
March 9, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital participated in the national Patient Safety Awareness Week held March 4-10. The goal of this event was to raise awareness of patient safety activities, and develop lasting partnerships among staff, patients, and the community. The 2012 campaign theme, "Be Aware for Safe Care," is promoted by the National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF).

SJMH celebrated the week with a number of special activities including daily safety tips and quizzes, as well as employee flu prevention recognition, and an "Improve our Patients’ Safety" contest.

In the photo below, Patient Safety Awareness committee members sport mock hardhats designed for the week-long recognition.

Patient Safety Awareness
Left-right: Shannon Work, Nancy Khork, Jeanie Andrus, Mary LaRowe, Pat Butray-Frey, Carrie Steffey, missing from photo, Peg Gelser-Webb

The highlight was the selection of the best employee idea to improve SJMH’s patient safety. The winning idea was submitted by Jeanie Andrus, suggesting that hand rails be installed in the hallway from Registration to the Lab for patients in need of assistance. She won a "safety" basket filled with a carbon monoxide alarm, fire extinguisher, food thermometer, pot holders, emergency candles, first aid kit, and duct tape.




New Chaplain Joins St. James Mercy Hospital
January 18, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce that Patricia Bancroft recently joined the Hospital as a Chaplain.

Ms. Bancroft received her Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Michigan University, and her Master of Divinity degree from McCormick Theological Seminary (Chicago, IL) and Ecumenical Theological Seminary (Detroit, MI). She completed her hospital chaplain residency at the internationally renowned Cleveland Clinic Foundation Hospitals, Department of Pastoral Care (Cleveland, OH).

According to Sylvia Bryant, VP of Mission Integration and Community Outreach at St. James Mercy Hospital, "We are very pleased to welcome Chaplain Bancroft to our pastoral care team. She brings a rich background of working with diverse cultures, beliefs, and faith traditions, and will be a valuable member of our pastoral care team serving patients, residents and their families. Her talents include providing pastoral support to terminally ill patients and their families, palliative care, as well as counseling for people of all ages going through difficult situations," stated Ms. Bryant.

Chaplain Bancroft was ordained in May, 2005 and has been Pastor of The First Seventh Day Baptist Church of Alfred for the past ten years. She is a New York State certified EMT and is Chaplain for the A.E. Crandall Hook & Ladder Company/Alfred Ambulance Corps. She and her husband, Tim, reside in Wellsville, NY.

  Patricia Bancroft
Patricia Bancroft, Chaplain




St. James Mercy Hospital Awarded $30,000 Grant for Psychiatric and Addiction Treatment Services
January 10, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital has been awarded a $30,677 Heritage Fund grant from Catholic Health East (CHE) for new kitchen facilities at MATCH (Mercycare Addiction and Treatment Center of Hornell) and the Psychiatric Care Unit.

A portion of the grant will be used for new appliances, cabinets, dining chairs, and flooring at MATCH to provide a safer, more functional, and welcoming space for patients. Monies will also be allocated to a kitchen and sitting area in the newly renovated adult Psychiatric Care Unit, which is currently being relocated to provide contemporary, centralized, and safer space for patients. The new kitchen and sitting area will include appliances, dining furniture, television, couches, and chairs. The relocation and renovation project is expected to be completed in late March.

According to Trish Uldrich, SJMH Chief Nursing Officer, "Both of these services are essential to St. James Mercy Hospital’s behavioral health program and to our community. The enhancements to MATCH and inpatient adult psychiatric care are greatly needed to maintain the quality of care our patients deserve. Without the support of CHE’s Heritage Fund, these improvements would not have been possible."

Located at the Mercycare campus, MATCH offers high-quality inpatient care aimed at promoting addiction recovery, including inpatient treatment and outpatient programs. SJMH also offers inpatient psychiatric services for adolescents and adults at the Hospital location. The Heritage Fund grant program is managed by Catholic Health East, and designed to fund projects to care for those who are poor, underserved or disadvantaged. Grants are awarded to member facilities within CHE.




St. James Mercy Hospital Plans to Close Aquinas Psychiatric Day Treatment Program
January 5, 2012, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) has initiated the process to close the Aquinas Psychiatric Day Treatment (PDT) program, located at 373 Canisteo St., Hornell. The closure, expected to occur during the first quarter of 2012, requires approval from the New York State Office of Mental Health and New York State Department of Health. Both agencies have received applications for closure.

According to Mary LaRowe, St. James Mercy Health System President and CEO, "Closure of this program was a very difficult decision for Hospital leadership and the Board of Directors. Due to the ongoing challenges of the economy, declining client volumes, decreased Medicaid and Medicare reimbursements, and new regulatory requirements for the program, St. James Mercy Hospital can no longer continue to subsidize this service, and must direct limited resources to other services."

As the program ceases operation, SJMH staff will assist clients in transitioning to a new provider. According to Patricia Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer, "In order to ensure continuation of care and services during the Aquinas program closure, SJMH will assist clients in identifying outpatient psychiatric service providers, and will work with community providers to develop individually focused plans of care for all clients. Steuben County Mental Health Office, in Bath, NY, is actively participating with SJMH staff in transition planning and has the capacity to service a majority of our Aquinas clients."

"We are grateful to have served the community through this program," said Ms. LaRowe. "We are especially thankful for the high quality, compassionate care our mental health staff members have provided to clients over the years in support of our mission. We are committed to assisting the transition for those employees who are affected by the closure, providing support and options for their consideration," she said.

SJMH remains committed to serving the community’s most vulnerable and will continue renovations and program enhancements to behavioral health services and core businesses.




St. James Mercy Hospital Receives Grant to Launch Addiction Education Program
December 29, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital announced that it has received a $2,000 grant to launch an education program for community residents, caregivers, and others who have family members struggling with alcohol or chemical addiction. The new program will be offered free of charge to help participants understand the cycles of addiction and develop coping strategies. The grant was awarded by Allegany Franciscan Ministries through the ACOR (Allegany Community Outreach) program.

According to Trish Uldrich, SJMH Chief Nursing Officer, "Alcohol and drug addiction education is essential to help families cope with this significant problem so often hidden in our society. Currently, St. James Mercy Hospital offers family education to members of our inpatients’ family, but there is no program of this kind for the general public in our area, and we are excited about bringing a new, valuable and free service to families in need."

There is a growing demand for addiction education, said Ms. Uldrich. "At our MATCH service (Mercycare Addiction Treatment Unit of Hornell), we receive more than 250 calls annually from people seeking guidance in dealing with addicted family members, and it is estimated that there are over 300 opiate-addicted people in Steuben County It is clear that local families need more information and support," she said.

The education sessions will be presented by St. James Mercy’s behavioral health staff. "As an experienced provider of both inpatient and outpatient addiction services, the MATCH staff is excited to share their expertise with other members of the community," said Ms. Uldrich. The program is expected to begin in late spring in Hornell. Topics will include identifying the signs of addiction in loved ones, how to approach family members with a possible addiction problem and facilitate treatment options, and offering skills for important self care of family members who have been affected by someone else’s addiction. More information is available by calling (607) 324-6925.

The grant was awarded by ACOR (Allegany Community Outreach) program, which is administered by Allegany Franciscan Ministries, Inc. The grants provide short-term support to local community projects that are in keeping with the mission, vision, and direction of the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany. The order was founded in 1859 to provide education for children in the Allegany area of southwestern New York State, and began health ministries in Florida the late 1920’s. In 1997 the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany joined with the Sisters of Mercy and the Sisters of Providence to help form and sponsor Catholic Health East (CHE), a Catholic health system with ministries in eleven eastern states from Maine to Florida, of which St. James Mercy Hospital is a member. By the end of 2010, Allegany Franciscan Ministries had made more than 3,000 grants in its service areas totaling over $53 million.

St. James Mercy Hospital offers the area’s most comprehensive array of adult and adolescent behavioral health and addiction treatment services, predominantly serving the poor, underserved and disadvantaged. For more information visit www.StJamesMercy.org/behavioral-medicine.shtml .




St. James Mercy’s Dialysis Unit Achieves "Five Diamond" Patient Safety Rating
December 21, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital’s dialysis unit was recently recognized by the End Stage Renal Disease Network of New York for demonstrating best practices in patient safety, achieving the highest level in the Network’s "Five-Diamond Approach" patient safety program. St. James Mercy Hospital is only the second dialysis unit in New York State to complete all five diamonds.

The 13-module program was introduced in January 2011 to assist New York State dialysis facilities in improving staff and patient awareness of specific patient safety goals. Sixty-nine of the total 243 dialysis facilities across the state are currently participating, and only six facilities of the 29 in the northern NY region have completed four diamonds or better.

"This is an outstanding achievement for St. James Mercy Hospital, given the majority of facilities in our region scored two diamonds or less," said Joan Lecceardone, Director of SJMH’s Dialysis Unit. "Five diamonds is a testament to the highest quality service, and ultimately, reflects better long-term outcomes for patients. We thank Dr. Hariprasad, our nephrologist, as well as the entire dialysis team for their attention to patient safety, and ultimately, for helping to improve our patients’ quality of life."

Five diamond rating for patient safety
St. James Mercy Hospital’s Dialysis unit recently earned a "five diamond" rating for patient safety. Pictured are Dialysis staff Joanne Clark (left), Diane Sherman, Jennifer Oyer, Joan Lecceardone, Susan Bob, and Susan Dunning (seated).


Located at the Mercycare campus in Hornell, St. James Mercy Hospital’s Dialysis Unit has been providing life-enhancing services for patients with end-stage kidney failure since 1980. Dialysis replaces a patient’s kidney function until a transplant is available, or in most cases, helps the patient lead a reasonably comfortable life for months or years. St. James Mercy can treat up to 30 dialysis patients a day, and also provides training and follow up for dialysis patients who are at home or in the nursing home.




St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary Funds New Skeleton for School of Radiological Science
December 2, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Thanks to the generous support of the St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary, St. James Mercy Hospital’s School of Radiological Science has a new skeleton to enhance classroom instruction. The School offers a two-year program for the education of radiography students.

According to director Bridgett Mayorga, the skeleton is an important addition to the program. "To become competent as radiographers, our students train extensively in human anatomy and physiology. The new skeleton provides hands-on instruction and reinforces the textbook learning. We are very appreciative to the Auxiliary for this donation," she said.

"Our Auxiliary members were very enthused about funding this purchase," said Lynne Freeland, Auxiliary president. "They knew it would immediately be put to good use and improve the students’ learning experience. The Auxiliary is always pleased to be able to support the Hospital and assist in any way to provide quality, accessible healthcare to our community."

Auxiliary Funds New Skeleton
Students Lauren McLaughlin (left) and Chelsea Gregorius practice anatomy identification using the new skeleton funded by the St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary.

Started in 1949 by Dr. William MacFarland, St. James Mercy Hospital’s School of Radiological Science at admits fourteen students annually. Through a combination of coursework and clinical experience, the program prepares students to become qualified radiographers and work as diagnostic imaging technicians. More information is available at www.stjamesmercy.org/school.shtml or by calling (607) 324-8265.

In addition to supporting the School of Radiological Science, a portion of the Auxiliary’s recent gift funded new furniture for Mercycare Break adult daycare program, as well as scholarships for students of the School. In 2011, the Auxiliary funds also supported the refurbishing of a new "comfort room" in the Adolescent Psychiatric Unit.

Established in 1904 and comprised of volunteers, St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary is one of the largest financial supporters of St. James Mercy Hospital. "This year the Auxiliary presented a check in the amount of $28,000, the largest single-year contribution in its history," said Ms. Freeland. "The money is raised in the Aquinas Gift Shops and from a variety of activities and events."

Auxiliary membership is open to anyone wishing to be of service at the Hospital or McAuley Manor. "Auxiliary members and our other volunteers make it possible for St. James Mercy to provide compassionate, accessible care to the community," said Ms. Freeland. "We welcome new volunteers, even if just for a couple of hours a month. Participating in the Auxiliary is a great way to support our community in a tangible and effective way."

For more information about volunteer opportunities at St. James Mercy Hospital, visit www.stjamesmercy.org/auxiliary.shtml or call (607) 324-8147.




St. James Mercy Hospital Diabetes Education Program Receives Accreditation
November 18, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital Diabetes Self Management Education Program recently attained accreditation by the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE). Diabetes education, provided by diabetes educators, is a collaborative process through which people with or at risk for the disease can learn how to modify behavior and successfully self-manage diabetes and its related conditions.

Bonnie Button, RN, CDE (Certified Diabetes Educator), Diabetes Education Program Coordinator for St. James Mercy Hospital, has worked diligently to get this program accredited to increase access to critical diabetes education services in and around the Hornell area. "I am very pleased that our program has received accreditation by the AADE," stated Ms. Button. "This demonstrates to our community that we offer a high quality program where patients can receive invaluable education and support related to diabetes self management. The program gives people with diabetes the knowledge, skills and tools they need to successfully manage their diabetes and avoid many of the complications associated with the disease."

"We are proud to recognize Bonnie Button for her recent accomplishments, as she has successfully passed the examination to achieve certification as a diabetes educator," stated Trish Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer at SJMH. "Over the past year Bonnie has shown great dedication in her personal development and additional success in obtaining accreditation of the diabetes education program at St. James Mercy Hospital."

St. James Mercy Hospital has the only accredited program in its 15-mile primary service area. The American Association of Diabetes Educators began the accreditation program in 2009, and was created, in part, to encourage diabetes education where the patient is seeking care.

For more information on St. James Mercy Hospital’s Diabetes Self Management Education Program, call 607-324-8787.

  Bonnie Button, RN, CDE
Bonnie Button, RN, CDE, Diabetes Education Program Coordinator




New Surgeon Joins St. James Mercy Hospital
November 17, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce that Irfan Rizvi, MD will be joining the Hospital as a General/Colorectal Surgeon on March 1, 2012.

Board-certified in surgery and colon-rectal surgery, Dr. Rizvi attained his Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery degree from Aga Khan University Medical College (Pakistan), and completed his fellowship at the Royal College of Surgeons (England).

Since 2001, Dr. Rizvi has trained and practiced in the United States at Buffalo General Hospital, West Virginia University Hospitals, Spectrum Health/Michigan State University (Ferguson Clinic), and most recently at Schuyler Hospital (Montour Falls, NY). He has published and presented numerous papers on surgical and cancer-related topics. Dr. Rizvi currently resides in Corning, NY.

According to Dr. Bradley Truax, St. James Mercy Chief Medical Director, "We are very pleased and fortunate to recruit a surgeon of Dr. Rizvi’s caliber. He is an experienced and well-respected professional whose special interest in GI problems and cancer will expand local access to these much-needed services in the community. We look forward to him joining the surgical staff at St. James Mercy Hospital."

Dr. Rizvi’s new office will be located at 460 Canisteo Street, Hornell, and he will begin seeing patients in March 2012. Appointment and contact information will be made available in the near future.

  St. James Mercy Welcomes Irfan Rizvi, MD, a General/Colorectal Surgeon
General/Colorectal Surgeon




St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary Hosts Annual Holiday Bazaar
October 27, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Members of the St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary are preparing for the annual Holiday Bazaar, which will be held over two days: Thursday, November 3, from 10am to 1pm, at McAuley Manor, and Friday, November 4, from 9am to 1pm at the Hospital.

"The annual Holiday Bazaar is one of our major fundraising events and offers a wonderful opportunity to get a head start on holiday shopping," said Nan Racalto, co-chair of the event. "This year will feature several drawings for gifts and prizes, including a lottery ticket basket, a $100 Christmas money tree, and a hand-crafted afghan, as well as our traditional 50/50 raffle. New this year is a specialty bread sale—with four varieties available for $2 a loaf."

Both locations will also feature "New to You" booths, as well as a bake sale. "The bake sale is always very popular," said Lynne Freeland, co-chair of the event. "Every year, we increase the items we have for sale, and they always go quickly, especially among Hospital employees." The Aquinas Gift Shops will offer a 15% discount on holiday and other merchandise.

The success of the Bazaar depends on the contributions and hard work of Auxiliary members, including:

  • Bake Sale, St. James Mercy—Mary Theresa Purtell, Emma Loree (Hospital);Maureen Galatio, Aileen Mahoney, Dottie Harrington (McAuley Manor)

  • New to You—Joan Watches, Jean Pollinger (Hospital); Alice Ingham, Grace Eagan, Eileen Hamelin, Ginny Putnam, Margaret Sleggs (McAuley Manor)

  • Specialty bread sale—Fran Grillo

  • Raffles
    • lottery ticket basket raffle, donated by Jan Weyand
    • handmade afghan, donated by Emma Loree
    • money Christmas tree, assembled by Margaret Sleggs
    • arctic snowmen, donated by Hospital gift shop

Holiday Bazaar
Gift Shop Coordinator, Liz Surita, poses with the snowmen to be raffled.

Racalto and Freeland also co-chair the Hospital Auxiliary, which is seeking new members. "We have a wonderful core membership that dedicates many, many hours to making the Holiday Bazaar a success," said Freeland. "Without them, we would not be able to do as much to support the Hospital. We are so grateful for their support and commitment, and welcome others to join us."

Proceeds from the Hospital Bazaar are presented annually to St. James Mercy Foundation to help purchase equipment and support other initiatives of the Hospital. Recent projects made possible in part through the Hospital Auxiliary’s generous gifts include the comfort room for adolescent psychiatric patients and new furnishings for the Mercycare adult day program.

To volunteer or donate goods to the Holiday Bazaar, or for more information about the event or the Hospital Auxiliary, please contact the St. James Mercy Foundation at (607) 324-8240.




St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary Funds New Furniture for Mercycare Break Day Treatment Program
October 21, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Thanks to the St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary, registrants and staff of the Mercycare Break day treatment program have a more comfortable environment for their daily activities. Through its annual gift to the St. James Mercy Foundation, the Hospital Auxiliary recently funded the purchase of ten tables and forty chairs for the Mercycare Break program at McAuley Manor. Mercycare Break provides registrants with medical and personal care, as well as a stimulating social environment, while offering respite to family members and other caregivers.

According to Jessica Cleveland, social worker at Mercycare, the new furniture is a great improvement. "It has dramatically improved the appearance of the dayroom. The new chairs are far more comfortable and easier to get in and out of, and there is improved socialization and workspace for activities. We are all very appreciative to the Auxiliary for this donation," she said.

"Our Auxiliary members were very excited about funding this project," said Lynne Freeland, Auxiliary president. "They knew it would have an immediate and direct positive impact on the care experience. We are always pleased to be able to support the Hospital and assist in any way to provide quality, accessible healthcare to our community."

In addition to supporting Mercycare Break, a portion of the Hospital Auxiliary’s recent gift funded the purchase of a skeleton for the School of Radiologic Science, as well as scholarships for students of the School. In 2011, the Auxiliary funds also supported the refurbishing of a new "comfort room" in the Adolescent Psychiatric Unit.

Established in 1904 and comprised of volunteers, St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary is the single largest financial supporter of St. James Mercy Hospital. "This year the Auxiliary presented a check in the amount of $28,000, the largest single-year contribution in its history," said Ms. Freeland. "The money is raised in the Aquinas Gift Shops and from a variety of activities and events." The next major Auxiliary fundraising event is the Christmas Bazaar, scheduled for November 3 at McAuley Manor and November 4 at the Hospital.

Auxiliary membership is open to anyone wishing to be of service at the Hospital or McAuley Manor. "Auxiliary members and our other volunteers make it possible for St. James Mercy to provide compassionate, accessible care to the community," said Ms. Freeland. "We welcome new volunteers, even if just for a couple of hours a month. Participating in the Auxiliary is a great way to support our community in a tangible and effective way."

For more information about volunteer opportunities at St. James Mercy Hospital, visit www.stjamesmercy.org/auxiliary.shtml or call (607) 324-8147.


Auxiliary Funds New Furniture for Mercycare Break Day Treatment
Auxiliary Funds New Furniture for Mercycare Break Day Treatment




"Diamonds & Denim" Charity Event Raises Over $26,000 for St. James Mercy Foundation
October 20, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

The 2nd annual "Diamonds & Denim" charity event to benefit St. James Mercy Foundation was held Saturday, October 8, at the Hornell Golf Club, and raised over $26,000. More than 100 guests gathered for an evening of casual dining and dancing to the music of Nik Lite. A silent charity auction, brought together by event co-chairs and Foundation board members Beverly Gilbert and Lisa Schwartz, featured goods and services donated by 60 local merchants.

According to Sylvia Bryant, Foundation Executive Director, "Diamonds & Denim" has become a new local tradition. "Now in its second year, ‘Diamonds & Denim’ offers a fun evening out with friends for a good cause. Proceeds raised at the event provide direct support to St. James Mercy Hospital for equipment purchases including digital mammography, physical therapy, cardiac rehabilitation, adult day programs, and other vital services."

The highlight of the evening was a drawing for a pair of one carat blue diamond earrings, provided by McHenry Jewelers and won by Jeff Cornish.

"Local businesses and individuals were so generous in support of the Foundation," said Gilbert. "Their donations of cash and goods and services made the silent auction a great success, raising more than $3,500. We are especially grateful to McHenry Jewelers for their support in making the diamond raffle the centerpiece of our event."

"Our sponsors and donors are at the heart of the event," said Bryant. Event sponsors included Excellus, Exigence, Guthrie Healthcare System, Harris Beach, Larry’s Latrines, Onics Direct, Procair, Simmons Rockwell Ford, St. James Mercy Medical Staff, Steuben Trust Company, The Bonadio Group, Dr. Bradley Truax, and Universal Health Network. Among the many contributors of gifts and services were Ted Adornato, Covered Wagon Tours, Doug’s Flower Shop, Hornell Golf Club, Hornell Partners for Growth, McHenry Jewelers, Sodexo, and Hornell Area Family YMCA. A complete list of sponsors can be found at www.stjamesmercy.org/foundation-ball.shtml.

The evening also included tapas dining provided by John Carbone and Cynthia’s Cookies, and music by rock ’n roll band Nik Lite. "It was a fun party atmosphere and we thank Hornell Golf Club for providing the perfect venue," said event co-chair and Foundation Board member Lisa Marino-Schwartz . "Guests and volunteers had a great time, and most importantly, we raised a lot of money for the Hospital."

The next "Diamonds & Denim" is scheduled for October 6, 2012 at Hornell Golf Club. For more as it becomes available information contact St. James Mercy Foundation (607-324-8240; email lgardner@sjmh.org), or visit stjamesmercy.org.


John McHenry and Jeff Cornish
John McHenry (left) of McHenry Jewelers presents the one-carat blue diamond earrings to winner Jeff Cornish.

DIAMONDS & DENIM SPONSORS
Ted Adornato
Alfred Pharmacy
Alfred Sports Center
Annie’s Nail
Applebee’s
Arkport Harley
B.K.’s Boutique & Florist
Baker’s Bridge Antiques
John & Nancy Bartell
Bennett’s Farm Market
Berry Vine Creations
Billy Schu’s
Bonadio Group
Canacadea Country Store
Canisteo Pizzeria
Canisteo Valley Transcription Specialists
Central Tractor
Club 57
Collegiate Restaurant
Byron A. Collins, MD
Convenient Food Mart
Country Kitchen
Covered Wagon Tours
Cynthia’s Cookies
Cy’s Shurfine
Davidson’s Furniture
Doug’s Flower Shop
EBS-RMSCO, Inc.
Elegance Bridals & Formals
Diane Ells
Jason Ells
Erica Leigh
Excellus
Exigence, Inc.
Doug & Beverly Gilbert
Giovanni’s Pizzeria
Guthrie Healthcare System
Harris Beach
Hornell Furniture Outlet
Hillbottom Pottery
Hornell Area Family YMCA
Hornell Cinemas
Hornell Do-It-Best
Hornell Golf Club
Hornell IDA
Hornell Partners For Growth
Thomas & Teresa Houghtaling
Infinity Management Service
Larry’s Latrines
Little Italy
Lowe’s
Maple City Bowl
Maple City Dodge
Maple City Pharmacy
Marino’s Restaurant
Christine McDaniels
McHenry Jewelers
Miss Lisa’s Artistry of Dance
Gayle Mosher, MD & Harold Bauer
New Dimensions
Onics Direct
Paddy’s Pub & Grill
Pasquale Picco, MD
Pizza Hut
Pizza King
Procair
Jay Pullman
Rainbow Heaven
Revolution Dance Studio
Rose’s Tan
Ryan Agency
Diana E. Sermonis
Shear Perfection
Simmons Rockwell Ford
SJMH Medical Staff
Sodexo, Inc.
SoHo Clothing
Sports Fanatic
Steuben Trust Company
Stone Cottage Cakery
Strawberry Basket
Studio 12
Sunset Restaurant
Surfside Tan
Swain Resort
Terra Cotta Coffee House
The Scoop
Triftshauser & Salmon, DDS, PC
Bradley T. Truax, MD
Twin Hickory
Udder Place
Unique Country Boutique
Universal Health Network
Valu-Home Center
Village Café
Verizon Wireless Zone
Way to Grow
Wegmans
John & Kim Weyand
Whalen Consulting
Wilkins Recreational Vehicles




LPGA Corning Classic Honors Pledge to Area Hospitals: St. James Mercy Receives $9,300
October 18, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital announced that it recently received $9,300 in proceeds from the LPGA Corning Classic golf tournament. Although the event was discontinued in 2009, Corning Classic Charities, Inc. pledged to continue disbursing charitable funds through 2011, with the final $250,000 distributed in September.

Since 1979, St. James Mercy Hospital has received over $181,000 from the event, with $6.1 million in total disbursed in 33 years to area charities.

"We are grateful for the generous support of Corning Classic Charities," said Sylvia Bryant, St. James Mercy Foundation Executive Director. "The commitment to regional rural hospitals sets an important example and makes a critical difference in the quality of health care services we are able to provide to our community—especially at a time when access to care is critically important to so many."

St. James Mercy Hospital will use the proceeds to support women’s health care programs, Bryant said.



Jack Benjamin, president of Corning Classic Charities, Inc. presents a $9,300 check to Sylvia Bryant, executive director of St. James Mercy Foundation. The funds will be used to support women’s health care programs.




St. James Mercy Welcomes New Hospitalist, Dr. Aaron Hill
September 7, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy welcomes Aaron Hill, MD as a Hospitalist physician as of September 2, 2011. He joined the Medical Staff as a Hospitalist with Exigence Hospitalist Services, the Hospital’s provider of Emergency Department and Hospitalist physicians.

Dr. Hill attained his Medical Doctorate from Albert Einstein College of Medicine (Bronx) and served his Internal Medicine Residencies at St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital Center of Columbia (New York), Mount Vernon Hospital of the New York Medical College (Westchester, NY), and Queens Hospital of the Mount Sinai School of Medicine (Queens). Dr. Hill most recently served at Olean General Hospital.

As a Hospitalist, Dr. Hill specializes in caring for inpatients during their hospital stay. A Hospitalist acts as the provider and coordinator of care to eliminate much of the wait time for tests, results and consultations. Available 24/7, the Hospitalist becomes the center point for communication so that the patient, family, primary care physician, and specialists are well-informed. This expedites the care and treatment process and ensures that patients get the immediate attention they need.

  St. James Mercy Welcomes New Hospitalist, Dr. Aaron Hill
New Hospitalist, Dr. Aaron Hill




St. James Mercy Foundation Gearing Up for 2nd Annual "Diamonds & Denim" Event
September 2, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

All are welcome to attend St. James Mercy Foundation’s 2nd annual "Diamonds & Denim" charity event on Saturday, October 8 at Hornell Golf Club, from 7:00 pm – 1:00 am. This casual evening features tapas dining, live music by Nik Lite, dancing, silent auction, and a chance to win a pair of blue diamond earrings, courtesy of McHenry Jewelers. All proceeds from the evening benefit St. James Mercy Foundation.

"Last year’s first annual ‘Diamonds & Denim’ event was very successful," said event co-chair and Foundation Board member Beverly Gilbert. "Over 100 people attended, and after expenses we raised nearly $9,000 for the Hospital. We are expecting even greater results this year."

This year features one of area’s most popular bands, Nik Lite, starting at 9:00 pm. "Nik Lite is a high energy rock and roll group that appeals to listeners of all ages," said event co-chair and Foundation Board member Lisa Marino-Schwartz. "The menu includes tapas dining stations featuring hors d’oeuvres, including top round of beef, pasta dishes and desserts...and you really can wear your denim!"

Diamonds & Denim has become a new local tradition, according to Sylvia Bryant, Foundation Executive Director. "Already we have strong community support, including McHenry’s Jewelers, who is providing the diamond earrings, and major sponsors Steuben Trust Company, The Exigence Group, Harris Beach PLLC, The Bonadio Group, and Excellus."

In addition to the drawing for the diamond earrings, the night includes a silent auction featuring gift certificates and products from area merchants. "So many local businesses have generously donated gifts and services for the event, and we are grateful for community’s support," said Ms. Bryant.

Tickets to Diamonds & Denim are $75 per person and are available at St. James Mercy Foundation office (411 Canisteo St., Hornell) and Hornell Golf Club (473 Seneca Road), by calling 607-324-8240, or contacting lgardner@sjmh.org . All proceeds benefit St. James Mercy Foundation to fund Hospital equipment and program needs. For more information visit www.stjamesmercy.org/foundation-ball.shtml .




St. James Mercy Begins Final Phase of Behavioral Health Renovation and Relocation Project
August 24, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital announced that it will begin the final construction phase to relocate and renovate its inpatient adult psychiatric unit. Construction will commence in early September and is expected to be completed by the end of the year. The project originated out of the need to provide better care to patients, as part of St. James Mercy’s mission to provide quality, accessible healthcare services to all in the community.

According to Trish Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer, "Our goal is to create contemporary space to unify St. James Mercy’s adult inpatient psychiatric services and improve the care experience for patients and their families. As the only inpatient mental health provider in three counties, it was essential that we initiate this project to expand regional access to psychiatric services." The project will enhance services by:

  • Providing a unified care environment with sleeping and quiet room quarters and day treatment area located on the same floor

  • Creating unified clinical space that supports the management of psychiatric patients with co-existing medical problems

  • Providing two new "comfort rooms" for patient care

  • Utilizing the new structural recommendations to enhance the safety of patients and staff

  • Enhancing family and patient visitation space in a private area with a relaxing atmosphere

  • Improving the overall patient and family experience

Initial work on the project began in 2010. Upon approval of a Certificate of Need by the New York State Department of Health and the Office of Mental Health, pre-construction upgrades were completed. The construction bid process followed, and the Pike Company (Rochester, NY) was selected as the general contractor.

"We are excited to be in the final stretch of this major care improvement initiative," said Ms. Uldrich. "We thank our patients, staff and visitors in advance for their understanding and patience during this last phase of construction. Although there will be some noise and inconvenience, we will be sensitive to the needs of patients and their families."

St. James Mercy Hospital offers the area’s most comprehensive array of adult and adolescent behavioral health and addiction treatment services.





August 5, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

McAuley Manor is pleased to announce that Brittney Smith has been named its 2011 Resident Scholarship Award winner.

Each year the residents of McAuley Manor award a $200 scholarship to a New Visions student who is pursuing a career in health care. The BOCES New Visions Health Careers Exploration program partners with St. James Mercy to offer high school seniors the opportunity to experience hands-on training and shadow health care professionals.

Brittney is an Arkport Central School graduate, and this fall will be attending Francis Marion University (South Carolina) to pursue a degree in nursing.

  Brittney Smith
Brittney Smith, 2011 McAuley Manor Resident Scholarship Award winner.




Pamela Manktelow Receives Patricia Murphy Young Memorial Fund Award
August 4, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is proud to announce that Pamela Manktelow recently received the Patricia Murphy Young Memorial Fund award for community nurses. This award was established to recognize and support Corning-area community nurses who demonstrate a commitment to community nursing either in a professional or volunteer capacity.

Pam Manktelow, RN-BC, BS, has been a women’s health nurse at St. James Mercy Hospital for more than twenty-five years, and has been the MOMS Program (Medicaid, Obstetrical & Maternal Services) Coordinator for approximately six years. As part of the MOMS Program, Mrs. Manktelow developed an "Oral Health for Baby’s Sake" program that screens women for oral health status at the first prenatal visit, encourages pregnant women to seek dental evaluation and treatment during pregnancy, and educates women about the importance of good oral health during pregnancy.


Pamela Manktelow
Pamela Manktelow, RN-BC, BS, MOMS Program Coordinator, with gift bags of toothbrushes and toothpaste she purchased with grant award proceeds.


"Most of the MOMS clients often face financial challenges that would make what most of us consider a necessity (toothbrushes and toothpaste), a luxury they often cannot afford," stated Mrs. Manktelow.

Mrs. Manktelow’s grant award earned her $250 towards the purchase of dental supplies for women enrolled in St. James Mercy Hospital’s MOMS Program. For more information call (607) 324-8760.




St. James Mercy Hospital Earns Nuclear Medicine Accreditation
August 1, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Nuclear Medicine Accreditation St. James Mercy Hospital has been awarded a three-year term of accreditation in nuclear medicine by the American College of Radiology (ACR).

The ACR gold seal of accreditation represents the highest level of image quality and patient safety. It is awarded only to facilities meeting ACR Practice Guidelines and Technical Standards after a peer-review evaluation by board-certified physicians and medical physicists who are experts in the field. Image quality, personnel qualifications, adequacy of facility equipment, quality control procedures, and quality assurance programs are thoroughly assessed during the review.

The findings are reported to the ACR Committee on Accreditation, which subsequently provides the hospital with a comprehensive report that can be used for continuous practice improvement.

Nuclear medicine is a branch of medical imaging that uses small amounts of radioactive material, ingested by the patient, to diagnose and treat a variety of disease, including many types of cancers, heart disease, and certain other abnormalities within the body.




Bonnie Button Achieves Certified Diabetes Educator Status
July 20, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Bonnie Button The National Certification Board for Diabetes Educators and St. James Mercy Hospital are pleased to announce that Bonnie Button, RN, has achieved Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) status by successfully completing the Certification Examination for Diabetes Educators. Candidates must meet rigorous eligibility requirements to be able to take the examination. Achieving certification status demonstrates to people with diabetes and employers that the health care professional possesses distinct and specialized knowledge, thereby promoting quality of care for people with diabetes.

Over the course of 18 months, Bonnie spent many hours studying for the exam and presenting numerous community education programs. The CDE certification allows St. James Mercy to move forward in the process of seeking Accreditation for its Diabetes Self Management Education Program by the American Association of Diabetes Educators.




St. James Mercy Announces Staffing Adjustments
July 18, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital announced that it will implement staffing adjustments effective July 18, 2011.

"We deeply regret having to make this difficult decision," said Mary LaRowe, President and CEO of St. James Mercy Health System. "St. James Mercy has experienced a decline in patient volumes attributed to high unemployment in the area and is facing a significant decline in state and federal funding," she said. "We are committed to assisting the transition for those employees affected by the adjustments."

The staffing adjustments will include the elimination of positions, restructure of departments, and reduction in hours. "Employees who are directly affected have been notified, and will be provided support and options for their consideration," said Ms. LaRowe. Employees were informed of the adjustments on July 18.

St. James Mercy Hospital recently announced an affiliation agreement with Guthrie Healthcare System in Sayre, PA. "The need for staffing adjustments were identified prior to our agreement with Guthrie and are unrelated to our new relationship," said Ms. LaRowe. "The primary intent of our affiliation with Guthrie is to strengthen St. James Mercy’s financial position by expanding access to quality care in our area, including recruitment of physicians and specialists to fill high-demand needs. We anticipate that our relationship will result in a strengthened financial position for St. James Mercy Hospital."




Hospital Auxiliary Donates $28,000 to St. James Mercy Foundation
June 27, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Members of the St. James Mercy Hospital (SJMH) Auxiliary gathered on Tuesday, June 21, at the Knights of Columbus Hall for the annual Auxiliary Appreciation luncheon to celebrate a milestone in their history with St. James Mercy Hospital. This year’s annual gift by the Auxiliary to St. James Mercy Foundation of $28,000 represents the largest single-year contribution in the Auxiliary’s history, which spans 107 years.

In presenting the check to SJMH president and CEO Mary LaRowe, Auxiliary chair Nancy Bartell acknowledged the hard work and persistence of all Auxiliary members in making possible such a generous contribution. "Auxiliary members are always there to step up and support a variety of activities and events, from the annual Christmas Bazaar and Food Fair to volunteering in the Aquinas Gift Shops," said Bartell. "We are pleased to be able to support the hospital and our community in this tangible and effective way."

In accepting the check, LaRowe acknowledged the organization’s effectiveness over the years in supporting quality healthcare for the greater Hornell community. "Since its founding in 1904, the Hospital Auxiliary has been St. James Mercy’s most generous and persistent donor," said LaRowe. "Without their support and volunteerism, the hospital would not be so well positioned to provide compassionate, accessible care to patients and residents."

A portion of this year’s gift will be directed to two important projects at St. James Mercy. The Mercycare Break program at McAuley Manor provides program registrants with medical and personal care, as well as a stimulating social environment. Auxiliary funds will assist in refurbishing the program space with new tables and arm chairs. The School of Radiologic Science is the second beneficiary of this year’s gift. The School of Radiologic Science offers an accredited, competency-based, 24-month radiography program to admitted students. Kelly Bracken, director of residential life at McAuley Manor, and Bridget Mayorga, director of the School of Radiologic Science, were the guest speakers at the Auxiliary luncheon.

Other milestones at the event included honoring Fran Grillo as an "honorary Auxilian" for more than 40 years of active service. Betty Archangeli also was recognized for fifty years of service, and Margaret Cannon also was recognized for 40 years. Mary Patti was honored as the longest serving Auxilian—59 years. Additionally, the Auxiliary members enjoyed a special performance by the Hornell High School jazz and show choirs, under the direction of Chris VanLeeuven.

St. James Mercy Foundation, the charitable arm of St. James Mercy Hospital, is preparing to launch its annual campaign and counts the Hospital Auxiliary as a mainstay in its ability to support the Hospital. "Every dollar contributed to the St. James Mercy Foundation makes a real difference to the quality of healthcare services available in our community," Bryant said. "All gifts are appreciated by not only patients but also hospital staff, enhancing the kind of care they are able to provide."

For more information about the Hospital Auxiliary, visit www.stjamesmercy.org/auxiliary.shtml . More information about the St. James Mercy Foundation is available at (607) 324-8240, or by visiting www.stjamesmercy.org/foundation-overview.shtml .


Nancy Bartell
Nancy Bartell (right), chair of the Auxiliary and Mary LaRowe, president and CEO of St. James Mercy Hospital

Nancy Bartell (right), chair of the St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary, presents a check for $28,000 to Mary LaRowe, president and CEO of St. James Mercy Hospital. This year’s gift to the St. James Mercy Foundation will support the Mercycare Break adult day program at McAuley Manor and also the School of Radiologic Science, in addition to supporting the general fund.


Mary Patti
Mary Patti (left) and St. James Mercy Foundation Executive Director, Sylvia Bryant

Mary Patti (left) is honored as the longest-serving Auxilian by St. James Mercy Foundation Executive Director, Sylvia Bryant. She joined the Hospital Auxiliary in 1952, 59 years ago, and has been the group historian for many years. Betty Archangeli and Fran Grillo (not pictured) also were honored for their many years of active service and membership—Betty, 50 years; Fran, more than 40 years.


Margaret Cannon
Margaret Cannon

Margaret Cannon is honored for her long service to the Hospital Auxiliary, which she joined 40 years ago. Margaret worked in the Aquinas Gift Shop for many years and trained volunteers on the gift shop cash register—a special challenge when the gift Shop converted to the touch screen computer model!




8th Annual "Friends Fore Mercy" Golf Tournament Raises Record $31,700 for St. James Mercy Foundation
June 21, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

The 8th annual "Friends Fore Mercy" golf tournament to benefit St. James Mercy Foundation raised a record $31,700 at the event held Friday, June 10, at Twin Hickory Golf Club. Thirty-six teams and fifty sponsors participated in this year’s tournament, as well as twenty-three volunteers from the hospital and community. The Foundation provides resources to benefit St. James Mercy Hospital, and all proceeds from the golf tournament will directly benefit Hospital equipment and program needs.

"The ‘Friends Fore Mercy’ golf tournament has become something of a community tradition, and this year’s event was a great success," said Sylvia Bryant, Foundation Executive Director. "As always, the Hornell community delivered a strong show of support for the golf tournament, which is one of our major fundraising events. All of us at St. James Mercy are grateful for such a strong show of support from our sponsors and players, as well as Hospital staff and volunteers."

This year’s Event sponsors were Steuben Trust Company, St. James Mercy Medical Staff, WYDC-TV Big Fox " WKPQ 105.3 FM, Razak Associates, and The Exigence Group, Inc. Simmons Rockwell offered four hole-in-one prize opportunities, including the chance to win a 2011 Ford Fusion SE. Additional sponsors and prize donors for the event may be found at www.stjamesmercy.org/foundation-golf .

New to this year’s tournament, Alex Fitzpatrick, local Section 5 golf champion, was recruited to hit team drives for a $10 donation to the Foundation. Additional funds were raised with drawings to win a grill (courtesy of Sears of Hornell), outdoor fire pit, and a 50/50 cash raffle.

With a score of 57, the winning team was comprised of Casey Kellogg, Chad Giglio, Sean Nosky and Michael Bradley. Second place with a score of 59 included team Craig Gelder, Nick Xidis, Eric Muller and Aaron Leguire. Women’s closest to the pin was won by Rosie McCollumn and men’s closest to the pin by Randy Rummel. Women’s longest drive was won by Kate Kreger and men’s longest drive by Mike Bradley. Skins winners included teams Kellogg, Mullen, Evans and Forsythe.


2011 "Friends Fore Mercy" golf participants, including local golf star and volunteer, Alex Fitzpatrick (third from left).

Plans already are underway for the 2012 "Friends Fore Mercy" tournament. For information on next year’s event as it becomes available or to volunteer, contact St. James Mercy Foundation, phone (607) 324-8240; email lgardner@sjmh.org), or visit stjamesmercy.org .




St. James Mercy Boasts a Certified "ServSafe" Instructor
June 21, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce that Chef Manager, Kevin Scott, recently became a New York State certified ServSafe Instructor and Proctor. ServSafe is a training and certification program sponsored by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation and is nationally recognized as the restaurant industry standard.

This certification enables Chef Scott to train cooks and cafeteria supervisors from restaurants and other hospitals in the safe handling of food. As a certified Proctor, he can also give the exam to the students upon completion of either the 8-hour or 16-hour course.

ServSafe Instructor
Chef Kevin Scott
Certified ServSafe Instructor and Proctor

While this is a national program, New York State is very strict and highly recommends that all food service managers be qualified. "I want to achieve certification for all of our Hospital and McAuley Manor staff, even though the State only requires that managers be certified," stated Chef Scott. "My goal is to ensure that our patients, residents, and customers are eating safe, healthy food, and are not in danger of getting a food-borne illness," he added.

Within his Sodexo district (St. James Mercy’s food service provider), Chef Scott is the only certified ServSafe Instructor/Proctor from Syracuse to Hornell. He is available to teach the food safety course to area restaurants and health care organizations. For more information call 607- 324-8171.




Digital Mammography Now Available at St. James Mercy Hospital
June 20, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce that the latest in digital mammography technology is now available in its medical imaging department, with the installation of Fuji’s Computed Radiography for Mammography (FCRm) system.

"Screening mammography is still recognized as the most effective tool available for the early detection of breast cancer," said Dr. Bradley Truax, Chief Medical Officer at St. James Mercy. According to research, digital mammography offers significant benefits to certain groups of women.

Digital mammography, a mammogram that uses new detection technologies and computers instead of film, was found in a landmark clinical study of more than 42,000 women to be better than film-screen mammography in detecting breast cancer in three groups: women under age 50, pre- and peri-menopausal women, and women with dense breasts. Digital mammograms are 15 percent more accurate among women under age 50 or not yet in menopause, and 11 percent more accurate among women with dense breasts.

"We’re proud to be able to provide Hornell-area women with the most advanced screening technology available to identify cancers early when they are most treatable," said Dr. Truax.

From the patient’s perspective, the procedure for a digital mammogram is the same as for a conventional film mammogram. However, since the images are available almost immediately and no film development time is necessary, the wait time for the patient is less.

In addition, St. James Mercy Hospital uses GE Centricity PACS (Picture Archiving and Communication System), which enables the digital mammograms to be electronically viewed, transmitted and stored. Its Cedara software enables an interpreting physician to use digital tools to electronically enhance and magnify the images, and to adjust the contrast to better examine any suspicious areas. This reduces the need for the patient to be called back for additional exposures.

The PACS also facilitates long-distance consultations with other specialists since the digital images can be readily transmitted to other facilities. They can also readily be transferred to a CD if a patient needs to take them to another facility.

"The benefits we are experiencing with Fuji’s digital mammography are not only allowing us to do our jobs more effectively and efficiently but, more importantly, they enable us to provide the top level of care for our breast imaging patients," said Dr. Truax.

Tracy Phillips, Mammography Technologist at St. James Mercy Hospital
Tracy Phillips, Mammography Technologist at St. James Mercy Hospital, demonstrates the new digital mammography technology.

Radiologist Stephen Raskin, MD
Radiologist Stephen Raskin, MD, demonstrates the new digital mammography technology.

According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in women between the ages of 15 and 54, and the second cause of cancer death in women 55 to 74. In New York State, nearly 15,000 are diagnosed with breast cancer annually over 2,500 women die each year from the disease. Fortunately, 96 percent of women who find and treat breast cancer early will be cancer-free after five years. A breast exam by a doctor should also be part of a periodic health exam every year for women 40 and above.

To enhance local breast cancer services, St. James Mercy Hospital partners with The Cancer Services Program of Steuben County to offer free mammograms as well as cervical and colorectal cancer screenings and treatments to uninsured or under-insured individuals. For information call (607) 324-8690 or toll-free (877) 778-6857, email sjmhwellness@sjmh.org or visit www.stjamesmercy.org/ .




St. James Mercy Hospital Launches "ePrescribing" Program
June 14, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

As part of its strategy to improve patient safety and move toward electronic medical records, St. James Mercy Hospital initiated an electronic prescribing ("ePrescribing") program with its physician offices on May 24.

With ePrescribing, an authorized prescriber (physician, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant) enters a patient’s prescription into the office computer, where it is electronically transmitted to the patient’s pharmacy to be filled. This automatic transmission system eliminates the use of paper prescription orders.

The advantages of ePrescribing are many, according to Dr. Bradley Truax, Chief Medical Office at St. James Mercy Hospital. "The biggest benefit is increased patient safety and less chance for medication errors due to illegible handwriting, re-entering a prescription at the pharmacy, or blurry faxes. In addition, the system automatically alerts prescribers of potential drug interactions and allergies, before the order is transmitted," he said.

ePrescribing is also convenient for the patient. "Patients no longer have to worry about losing or forgetting a prescription, or waiting in line to drop it off to be filled," said Dr. Truax. "ePrescribing eliminates one trip to the pharmacy – all the patient has to do is go pick up the order when it is ready."

The electronic transmission process is very safe, said Dr. Truax. "With ePrescribing, the patient’s information is not sent over the open Internet or via e-mail. Prescriptions are transmitted electronically through a private, secure and closed network, ensuring the greatest level of safety and privacy," he said.

St. James Mercy’s ePrescribing program will be linked to the Rochester Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO), a secure health information exchange system that the Hospital joined in 2010. More information on the RHIO is available at www.grrhio.org .




St. James Mercy Health System and Guthrie Healthcare System Announce Affiliation
June 7, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Guthrie Healthcare System Guthrie Healthcare System (GHS) and St. James Mercy Health System have reached an agreement to enter into an affiliation aimed at enhancing physician recruitment and expanding technological capabilities at St. James Mercy Hospital. The effective date of this new arrangement is July 1, 2011.

Talks between the two health systems began over one year ago. Both parties believe an agreement has been reached that honors the history and tradition of excellent care at St. James Mercy Hospital, while taking advantage of the strengths of the Guthrie system to most effectively meet the changing health care needs of patients in the Hornell region.

"We have expended a great deal of time and effort identifying the right partner to help us keep and strengthen services where they are needed and to attract new specialties," said Mary LaRowe, president and CEO of the St. James Mercy Health System. "We are confident we have found that partner in Guthrie. They offer a stellar track record of delivering high quality care and services in rural settings, and we are excited about what they bring to the table."

LaRowe added, "It is reassuring to see the type of financial turnaround that Guthrie helped bring about for Corning Hospital. That facility went from a challenging situation to such a positive position that they are planning for a new, state-of-the-art facility. A remarkable change like that does not happen without a strong partnership, and Guthrie is just such a partner."

LaRowe went on to say that St. James Mercy patients will have greater access to specialty services otherwise requiring significant travel, as well as enhanced convenience with the eventual introduction of an electronic medical record. "This partnership will also strengthen our ability to carry out our mission of serving the poor, the underserved, and disadvantaged," she said.

"Guthrie’s expertise in delivering health care and proven track record of recruiting physicians to rural settings will support St. James Mercy Hospital’s efforts to keep a great institution viable in the face of a challenging economic landscape," said Judith Persichilli, president and CEO of Catholic Health East, the national health care system of which St. James Mercy Health System is a member. GHS will assist St. James Mercy in recruiting physicians to its service area; these physicians will be employed by St. James Mercy. In addition, Guthrie Healthcare will provide assistance in the development of an electronic medical record, and in the areas of personnel management, finance, quality review and strategic planning.

"This is a great step for two great health systems," said Mark Stensager, president and CEO, Guthrie Healthcare System. "The partnership between St. James and Guthrie strengthens us both. St. James will benefit from Guthrie’s medical resources and administrative support, and as Guthrie recruits physicians for western Steuben County, the successful growth of those practices, in turn, increases all patients’ access to care for the twin tiers region."

Joseph A. Scopelliti, M.D., president and CEO of Guthrie Clinic, said, "With fewer people entering the medical profession, recruitment of physicians has to be one of the priorities for any organization looking to grow. The St. James medical staff has a proud history of service and we look forward to partnering with them to further that service."

Founded in 1890, St. James Mercy Hospital is comprised of the hospital, McAuley Manor and eleven clinics located throughout the rural service area. The mission statement of St. James Mercy emphasizes the goal of "being a transforming, healing presence within the rural communities we serve, particularly addressing the needs of the poor, underserved and disadvantaged."

St. James Mercy has 297 licensed beds and provides a full range of services including emergency, acute medical and surgical, adult and adolescent psychiatry, obstetrics and gynecology, in-patient addiction rehabilitation, skilled nursing care, adult day care, dialysis, and behavioral health day treatment. Special services include sleep disorders studies; cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation; physical, occupational and speech therapy; long term ventilator care, and a school of radiologic sciences.

St. James Mercy Health System is a member of Catholic Health East, a multi-institutional Catholic health system based in Newtown Square, Pennsylvania. The System provides the means to ensure the continuation of the Catholic identity and operational strength of the sponsors’ health ministries, which are located within 11 eastern states from Maine to Florida. The System includes 33 acute care hospitals, four long-term acute care hospitals, 25 freestanding and hospital-based long-term care facilities, 14 assisted-living facilities, four continuing care retirement communities, eight behavioral health and rehabilitation facilities, 37 home health/hospice agencies, and numerous ambulatory and community-based health services.

Guthrie Healthcare System, a nonprofit organization is comprised of the Guthrie Clinic, a multi-specialty medical practice with 260 physicians and more than 130 midlevel providers located throughout Pennsylvania and New York – and three hospitals: Robert Packer Hospital in Sayre, Pa., Troy Community Hospital in Troy, Pa., and Corning Hospital in Corning, NY.




St. James Mercy Celebrates Two Years "CAUTI-Free"
June 2, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is proud to announce that due to its efforts to improve quality and patient care standards, the facility has not had a hospital-acquired Catheter Associated Urinary Tract Infection (CAUTI) in two years, since mid-2009.

Urinary tract infections are a common hospital-acquired infection that account for approximately 40% of all hospital-acquired conditions. It is estimated that up to 25% of inpatients have a catheter placed while being cared for in the hospital, and over 50% of them are unnecessary.

"In older patients who do not have a specific medical indication for use, a catheter has been associated with a greater risk of death—four times as great during their hospital stay and twice as great within 90 days after discharge," said Pat Butray-Frey, Infection Control Director at St. James Mercy.

"That is why we are extremely careful about the decision to use catheters, closely monitor patients who have them, and remove catheters as soon as possible to avoid unnecessary risk. The result is better patient outcomes and few complications overall," she said. These same high-quality clinical standards are also followed at McAuley Manor, St. James Mercy’s long-term care facility.

CAUTI-Free
Practicing strict sterile procedures reduces the risk of CAUTIs at St. James Mercy Hospital.

Medicare and Medicaid Services view CAUTIs as unacceptable harm resulting from medical care, and hospitals will be at risk for financial losses if CAUTIs occur starting in January 2012. "Aside from patient comfort and overall health outcomes, there is a financial risk to hospitals where CAUTIs occur," said Ms. Butray-Frey. With more than one million cases of CAUTIs occurring annually, the cost associated with hospital acquired UTIs is estimated at $450 million.

"Two years without a CAUTI is an outstanding achievement for any hospital," said Trish Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer at St. James Mercy. "We thank our clinical and patient support staff for making CAUTIs a top priority and providing the safest, best quality care possible." To celebrate the achievement, St. James Mercy employees were treated to ice cream sundaes served by managers from Nursing, Infection Control and Quality Assurance.




St. James Mercy Scholarship Awarded to Katie Criss
May 24, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce that Katie Criss has been named its 2011 Memorial Scholarship winner.

Awarded annually to one high school senior, the $500 scholarship was established over 20 years ago. To be eligible, the student must be a St. James Mercy employee or child of an employee, be accepted by an institution of higher learning, and submit an application and letters of reference.

Katie will continue her education at Alfred State College, where she will pursue a Bachelor degree in Nursing. Katie is involved in a number of activities at Arkport Central School, and has a significant volunteer background, including involvement with the Arkport Fire Department.

Katie’s parents are father James, and mother Tammy Criss, who is a physician office supervisor at St. James Mercy Hospital.

Scholarship 2011
Scholarship recipient Katie Criss (center) is flanked by her mother, Tammy Criss, (right) and committee chairperson, Sharon McQuate.

Nine talented and ambitious students applied for the 2011 Memorial Scholarship. St. James Mercy congratulates Katie and sends best wishes to her and the other eight candidates, as they pursue their careers and continue to serve their communities.

Scholarship committee members include: Linda Blauers, Kelly Bracken, Sylvia Bryant, Bonnie Schuster, and Laura Vetter.




St. James Mercy Participates in "Flurricane" Disaster Drill
May 18, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is participating in a statewide disaster exercise in collaboration with emergency responders and hospitals in Steuben, Schuyler and Chemung counties.

Called "Flurricane 2011," the four-day exercise began on May 16 and simulates an area-wide disaster caused by heavy rains, winds and flooding from a hurricane. During the exercise, state and regional emergency responders are engaging in joint communications and decision-making to evacuate and place patients to other facilities during a mass casualty disaster.

On May 19, St. James Mercy Hospital is staging a drill with the Hornell City Fire Department to triage and treat victims of a train-bus accident and chemical exposure, due to washed-out roads resulting from severe weather.

"This drill is intended to test our triage plan during a mass-casualty incident," said Peg Gelser-Webb, Safety Office at St. James Mercy. "We regularly test our emergency plans, and this particular drill will assess our preparedness for event similar to weather disasters we’ve seen in other parts of the country."

Flurricane 2011 is the first of a three-year series of emergency drills and represents eleven months of planning. The local planning team was a collaborative between the Finger Lakes Regional Resources Center, Rochester Regional Healthcare Association, State Office of Emergency Management Region V, and Western Region Health Emergency Preparedness Team.

Statewide, eighteen hospitals and 100 long-term care facilities are participating in Flurricane 2011. In total between 2,000 and 4,000 individuals are expected to take part in the full-scale exercise.




St. James Mercy Announces 2011 "Nurse of Excellence" Award During National Nurses’ Week
May 17, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Linda Jersey The highlight of National Nurses’ Week at St. James Mercy Hospital was the announcement of the 2011 "Nurse of Excellence" Award winner, Linda Jersey, RN.

Ms. Jersey is a nurse on the medical/surgical unit and has worked at St. James Mercy since 1981. Her nomination included accolades such as, "She is an advocate for her patients and their families, and is an excellent role model." "Linda is an outstanding example of a professional and compassionate nurse. She is very attentive to patients and their needs. Everyone is treated like the unique person that they are."

The selection process is based on written nominations submitted by peers that demonstrate the following attributes: "clinical proficiency, teamwork, service of excellence inpatient care and contributions to St. James and the community." With over seventeen different nurses nominated from the Hospital, nursing home, and clinics, the committee was challenged in choosing between so many well-qualified and skilled nurses.

According to Trish Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer at St. James Mercy, "Nurses represent the largest group of health care workers in America, at 2.9 million strong. St. James is very fortunate to employ over 200 of these compassionate professionals who play such a vital role in the outcomes of our patient care. Not only do these nurses provide hands-on patient care but they must also be committed to continuing their education throughout their careers."

The nursing profession is often described as an art and a science that embraces dedicated people with varied interests, strengths and passions because of the many opportunities the profession offers. Nurses have many roles—from staff nurse to educator to nurse practitioner and nurse researcher—and serve all of them with passion for the profession and with a strong commitment to patient safety.

The 2011 theme for National Nurses Week, which begins each year on May 6 and ends on May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, is "Nurses Trusted to Care." St. James Mercy honors all 200 of its nursing staff and thanks them for the spirit of care and service they so readily give.



Hornell Rotary Partners with St. James Mercy for Community Blood Screening
May 10, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

The Hornell Rotary Club has engaged the laboratory services of St. James Mercy Hospital for its annual Community Blood Screening. The screening will be offered from 6:00 to 10:00 AM on Saturday, May 21, 2011 in the St. James Mercy Cafeteria. Participants should use the Canisteo Street Entrance.

The Community Blood Screening Program serves as an early warning system for residents in identifying current or potential health problems. A comprehensive blood screening is conducted for a $35 fee with the results sent to the participant’s physician. Additional screening for prostate cancer is available for an additional fee as well.

Interested residents are asked to contact St. James Mercy Hospital at (607) 324-8092 between the hours of 8:00AM and 2:00PM, Monday through Friday to register.



St. James Mercy Foundation Welcomes Three New Board Members
May 10, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Three local community leaders have joined the board of directors of St. James Mercy Foundation. Lynne Freeland, Tim Ingalls, and Peter Wall were elected to the board effective April 2011, and will serve a term of four years.

Lynne Freeland, Canisteo, New York, retired last year from St. James Mercy Hospital, where she served for more than 40 years. Most recently, she was Director, School of Radiologic Science, and brings deep expertise as a healthcare practitioner and administrator. Freeland holds degrees from Ottawa University and Capella University. She is a member of the St. James Mercy Hospital Auxiliary and will co-chair that group beginning in June.

Tim Ingalls, Hornell, New York, retired from Hornell City Schools in 2009 after more than 25 years working in public education. Most recently, he served as a School Psychologist for the Hornell City Schools, and formerly was with Steuben-Allegany BOCES. A graduate of Hornell City Schools, Ingalls also holds bachelors and masters degrees from Alfred University. He has served in various capacities on the Board of New York Association of School Psychologists, and is a former board member of the Hornell United Way, including a year as President.

Peter Wall, Canisteo, New York, is Chief Executive Officer of Universal Health Network, one of the nation’s top medical billing and consulting firms, with headquarters in Hornell. Previously, he has served as Chief Operations Officer and Senior Vice President, Operations for Physician Health Corporation, and Vice President, Northeast Operations for Cancer Treatment Services. Early in his career, Wall was Supervisor, Department of Pathology at St. James Mercy Hospital. He holds degrees from SUNY Cobleskill, University of Rochester, and Alfred University, and is active in a wide range of professional organizations.

Lynne Freeland, Peter Wall, Sylvia Bryant, and Tim Ingalls
New SJMH Foundation Board members Lynne Freeland, Peter Wall, Sylvia Bryant (Foundation Executive Director), and Tim Ingalls.

"The board of directors plays a vital role in setting direction for the Foundation and serves as advocates for our mission throughout the community," said Sylvia Bryant, Executive Director. "With the addition of these new members, we are strengthening representation across a variety of experience and expertise, adding to the board’s effectiveness on behalf of St. James Mercy Hospital."

For more information about St. James Mercy Foundation and other volunteer opportunities, please visit www.stjamesmercy.org or call (607) 324-8240.



Comfort Rooms Offer New Treatment Options in Behavioral Health:
SJM Foundation Provides Support for Enhanced Patient Care
March 22, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

With the help of the St. James Mercy Foundation, St. James Mercy Hospital is taking a step forward in enhancing inpatient behavioral health services.

The Foundation Board of Directors recently approved a gift of $11,000 to the hospital for outfitting three "comfort rooms," one in the adolescent psychiatric care unit and two in the adult unit. The new treatment space in the adolescent unit opened in early March, and the new adult facilities will come online at the end of the year, as part of renovations currently underway.

"SJM Hospital is always seeking ways to improve the quality of patient outcomes," said Mary LaRowe, President and CEO. "As one of the only providers of inpatient behavioral health services in the Southern Tier, the addition of dedicated comfort rooms puts us ahead of the curve in terms of preventative treatment."

A comfort room is a designated space that is designed in a way that is calming to the senses, according to Gina Reagan, Director of Behavioral Health. Comfort rooms are furnished with a variety of sensory items, including therapy balls, weighted blankets and wraps, relaxation bundles inclusive of hand held massagers, aromatherapy aides, a selection of relaxation music, and soft, flexible furniture.

Behavioral Health Comfort Rooms

"These rooms offer patients a sanctuary from stress," said Reagan. "For staff, this new environment adds another tool for helping patients to prevent and decrease agitation and aggressive behaviors." Comfort rooms not only may improve patient experience while at St. James, but may also result in coping skills that transfer to home care after patients are discharged.

The comfort rooms and the new treatment they will facilitate is one outgrowth of the hospital’s participation in the Positive Alternatives to Restraint and Seclusion (PARS) program through the Office of Mental Health. The collaboration aims to positively change the management of escalating behaviors. Reagan sees other opportunities for new treatment options in the coming months as a result of PARS.

According to Sylvia Bryant, Foundation Executive Director, this project illustrates the positive impact of private support for the organization. "Every dollar contributed to the St. James Mercy Foundation makes a real difference to the quality of healthcare services available in our community," Bryant said. "Every gift is appreciated by not only patients but also hospital staff, enhancing the kind of care they are able to provide."

More information about the St. James Mercy Foundation is available from Foundation staff at (607) 324.8240, or by visiting www.stjamesmercy.org .



Arkport Artist Partners with St. James Mercy
March 14, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

The connection between St. James Mercy Hospital and the Pullman family stretches from the legacy of the late Dr. James Pullman, a long-time family practitioner in Hornell, to the creation more recently, in 2005, of the Pullman Women’s Health and Birthing Center.

Now, Arkport, NY artist, Jay Pullman, is drawing another line of connection. Starting this month, Pullman is exhibiting a series of prints in the medical offices of Drs. Adrian Ashdown, Robert Whelpley, and Virginia Shephard, in the Elm Street (Hornell) Clinic. All the prints are for sale, and the artist has generously pledged to donate sale proceeds to the St. James Mercy Foundation.

"We are thrilled to have these beautiful prints hanging in our offices," said Jennifer Cuddeback, Clinic Supervisor. "They really brighten the environment and inspire our work, and we have had so many positive comments about them from patients and staff alike."

Pullman, a local artist of larger renown, shows his work widely around the greater Hornell area and is expanding into galleries in the Rochester area. A former teacher who came to painting as a passion, he draws inspiration from the natural environment of the Finger Lakes and the Southern Tier and from places as diverse as Provence and Tuscany.

Jay Pullman, Artist Partners with St. James Mercy
One of Jay Pullman’s prints, "Flash of Red," is for sale and on display in the Elm Street (Hornell) Clinic. All proceeds benefit St. James Mercy Foundation.

Behind each of his paintings is "a thread of a story," Pullman says, that inspires the piece and also helps connect the viewer to the work of art. "Flash of Red," for instance, captures a cardinal catching a moment’s rest atop a woodpile, while "Provence Square" recalls the noontime activities of a city’s center square during a visit by the artist and his wife. These prints are on display in the patient care rooms at the Elm Street medical office building, along with four others: "Snow Pansies," "Newfield Family," "Winter Walk," and "Southern Tier Snowstorm," a scene of the Pullman family farm in Hartsville, NY.

"St. James Mercy is honored to be the recipient of the Pullmans’ generosity in this unique way," said Mary LaRowe, President and CEO. "The opportunity to display works of art in our facilities benefits us all, and I hope community residents will take time to enjoy Jay’s work."

The Elm Street Clinic is located at 20 Elm Street in Hornell, NY. Offices are open from Monday through Friday from 8.00am-5.00pm. The prints will be on display through the end of August.

More information about Jay Pullman’s work is available at pullmanpaintings.com . More information about the St. James Mercy Foundation is available from Foundation staff at (607) 324.8240, or by visiting www.stjamesmercy.org.



St. James Mercy Prepared to Begin Behavioral Health Renovation and Relocation Project
March 1, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital announced that will begin construction and renovations to space on its 3 West unit to accommodate relocation of the inpatient Adult Psychiatric Unit.

This project commenced with the submission of a Certificate of Need to the New York State Department of Health and the Office of Mental Health for their review and approval. The three-phased construction project began with the relocation of certain functions to other areas of the hospital in preparation to start the project once the requisite approvals were obtained.

The next phase will involve upgrading and replacing plumbing and the ceilings in the current 2 West inpatient unit, and is expected to be completed over the next two to three months. Portions of the 2 West wing will be temporarily closed and access restricted in order to ensure patient, staff and visitor safety. During this time, patients will continue to be admitted and cared for on 2 West and visitors will be allowed access as well.

"We are excited about the progress we are making with this important project," said Trish Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer. "Once this phase is complete, we will begin the 3 West construction phase. This project will consolidate all adult inpatient psychiatric care, creating new, contemporary space to unify these much-needed services."

Ms. Uldrich stated that the project will enhance inpatient adult psychiatric services in several ways:

  • Provide a unified environment for adult inpatient care, by moving the sleeping and quiet room quarters to the same floor as the day treatment area.

  • Provide two new comfort rooms for patient management.

  • Maximize staff efficiency by providing all services on one floor.

  • Create contemporary clinical space that supports the management of psychiatric patients with co-existing medical problems on the unified unit.

  • Allow St. James Mercy to completely update the behavioral health unit utilizing the new structural recommendations identified in NY State guidelines; these will enhance safety and the well being of patients and staff on the unit.

  • Enhance family and patient visitation space in a private area with a relaxing atmosphere.

  • Improve the overall patient care experience.

3 West construction is expected to begin in mid-2011. "We thank our patients, staff and visitors for their patience and support as we complete this project to improve patient care, enhance access to psychiatric services, and better serve our community," said Ms. Uldrich.



St. James Mercy Launches New Website
February 28, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce the launch of its completely redesigned public website at www.StJamesMercy.org . The new website has a fresh, modern look and streamlined navigation to help visitors easily find information on health care services and providers.

"We did an intense website analysis and survey to determine what visitors are looking for," said Bonnie Welch, Chief Information Officer. "Our goal was to make the website more pleasing to the eye, easier to navigate, and user-friendly."

The new home page highlights the three most commonly areas accessed by visitors – Find A Doctor, Services & Clinics, and Careers. Over the next eighteen months, St. James Mercy will introduce new features, navigation, and content on its public website to make it easier for people to interact with the hospital.

"We encourage feedback and suggestions for strengthening our online presence," said Ms. Welch.

For more information visit www.StJamesMercy.org or contact Kate Kreger, Director of Business Development & Marketing, at 607-324-8233 (kkreger@sjmh.org).



St. James Mercy Foundation Appoints New Executive Director
February 16, 2011, Hornell, NY
Press Release (PDF)

Sylvia Bryant as Executive Director St. James Mercy Foundation announced the appointment of Sylvia Bryant as Executive Director, effective January 18.

Ms. Bryant will oversee all philanthropic initiatives and programs for St. James Mercy Foundation including grants appropriation, major gifts solicitation, campaign planning, and special events. She has held a variety of senior-level philanthropic positions, most recently as Executive Director, University Advancement at Plymouth State University (New Hampshire), where she directed a comprehensive campaign for capital projects, endowments, and annual giving. Previously Ms. Bryant held positions at Alfred University as Associate Vice President for Individual Giving and as Interim Vice President of University Relations.

According to Mary E. LaRowe, St. James Mercy President and CEO, this appointment is a major step toward enhancing the work of the Foundation. "In these challenging economic times, it is even more important to reach outside of our own community to garner support. Ms. Bryant brings a wealth of fundraising and leadership experience to St. James Mercy, as well as the ability to develop beneficial relationships with government and corporate funders. We look forward to working with her to strengthen and solidify our position as a high-quality provider of health care services."

"St. James Mercy is such an important part of the community," said Ms. Bryant, "and I have always appreciated the many good works of employees and volunteers. It is an honor and a pleasure to become part of the St. James team. I look forward to working in the community and building the partnerships that will strengthen the Foundation and the hospital, to the benefit of all area residents."

Ms. Bryant has a Bachelor degree from the University of Missouri-Rolla, a Masters from the University of Kansas, and a PhD in English from the University of Washington. She also served on St. James Mercy Hospital’s Board of Directors for seven years, including a term as Chairperson from 2005 – 2009. A long-time resident of Alfred, she has recently relocated back to the Hornell area.

Founded in 1890 and based in Hornell, NY, St. James Mercy Hospital is a 232-bed not-for-profit health organization sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy that provides care in Steuben and surrounding counties, with emphasis on the poor and underserved. Its full range of services includes Acute Care, Surgery, Emergency, Inpatient and Outpatient Behavioral Health, Long-Term Care, Dialysis, Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehab, and eleven satellite clinics throughout the county. St. James Mercy Hospital is a member of Catholic Health East, a multi-institutional network. St. James Mercy Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation that provides financial resources to fund equipment and services for St. James Mercy Hospital. For more information visit www.stjamesmercy.org .



SJM to Close "Afer Hours Clinic"
September 21, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY...St. James Mercy Hospital has announced the closing of its after hours clinic located at 460 Canisteo St., Hornell, effective Saturday, October 2, 2010. The clinic is closing due to the inability to recruit the necessary providers to operate the service.

Since 2009 the clinic has operated at 460 Canisteo Street, four days per week (Tuesday – Friday) from 3:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., when a provider was available. The hours of operation were intended to include evenings and weekends when a second provider was recruited. Expanded hours would provide an alternative for the public, when appointments to a primary care physician office were not available, or after regular office hours when patients needing immediate attention would otherwise be diverted to the emergency department. The challenges of recruiting are related to the rural location, lack of appropriate candidates, and the clinic hours of operation (evenings and weekends).

St. James Mercy will continue to offer primary care services at the hospital and at its primary care clinics that include: Elm Street Family Practice, Alfred Family Medicine, Hornell Pediatrics, Wayland Pediatrics, Internal Medicine/Pulmonology, Sister René Dental Center, Greenwood Health Center, and Troupsburg Health Center. Additionally, Susan M. Mason, D.O., recently joined St. James Mercy Hospital and is accepting new patients at her offices in Alfred (607-587-8192) and Greenwood (607-225-4217).

The after hours clinic closure does not impact the services provided by Dr. Anubha Sen, who is also located in the 460 Canisteo St. building.



SJM Announces Reopening of Elm Street Lab
August 26, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY…St. James Mercy Hospital announced that it will reopen the Elm Street (Hornell) laboratory drawing station that was closed, temporarily, in July. The Elm St. drawing station will reopen on September 13 and operate with a different schedule. The station will be open Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 7:30AM - Noon. Laboratory services will continue to be available in the Hospital seven (7) days a week (Monday – Friday 7AM to 8PM; Saturday and Sunday 7:30AM to 3:30PM).

"Since the temporary closure of the Elm St. drawing station, we received a great deal of feedback from our patients, physicians and staff," said Nancy Khork, Vice President of Performance Improvement at St. James Mercy. "We heard how convenient and accessible the Elm Street drawing station was to our community and how vital it was to many of our patients. Recognizing the impact the closure was having on our community, we made the decision to reopen the service as soon as we could."

The Elm St. drawing station was closed temporarily as a result of declining patient volumes and the need to realign resources. "St. James Mercy Hospital, like many other hospitals, is facing a number of financial challenges as a result of declining reimbursement, the weak economy, both nationally and locally, as well as decreasing patient volumes due to the economic climate," said Ms. Khork. "As a result of those challenges, the Hospital has been forced to make some difficult choices, some more permanent than the temporary closure of the Elm St. drawing station."

For more information contact Kate Kreger, Director of Business Development and Marketing, at 324-8233.




SJM Announces Workforce and Benefits Reductions
July 19, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY...St. James Mercy Hospital announced that it will implement workforce and benefits reductions effective July 19, 2010. The actions include reducing 20 full time equivalents (FTEs) and capping the paid time off (PTO) accrual.

According to Mary LaRowe, President and CEO of St. James Mercy Health System, "St. James Mercy Hospital and other health care organizations across the state continue to face serious financial challenges due to the weak economy, declining state funding, and decreasing reimbursement. The past two years have been particularly difficult for St. James Mercy Hospital. Several regional employers have closed or downsized, further weakening the economy and resulting in declining hospital revenues," she said.

The 20 FTE reduction will be accomplished through the elimination of open positions, restructuring of some departments, and elimination or consolidation of positions. "Employees who are directly affected have been notified and will be provided support and options for their consideration," said Ms. LaRowe. "Employees were informed of the reductions on July 19. Other hospitals within New York State hospitals have taken similar steps," she said.

St. James Mercy Hospital is in the process of exploring a potential partnership with Guthrie Health System in Sayre, PA . Hospital officials anticipate that they will reach a more definitive idea of what a partnership may look like in the late summer or early fall. "St. James Mercy is excited and energized by the potential partnership," said Ms. LaRowe.

For more information contact Kate Kreger, Director of Business Development and Marketing, at 324-8233.



SJM Announces Closure of Elm Street Lab
July 19, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. St. James Mercy Hospital announced that it will temporarily close its Elm Street laboratory drawing station starting July 26, 2010. The closure is in response to reduced patient volumes.

"St. James Mercy Hospital, like many other hospitals, is facing serious financial challenges as a result of the weak local economy and reduced patient volumes, as health care consumers defer elective procedures and physician visits," said Nancy Khork, Vice President of Performance Improvement. "We recognize the convenience the Elm St. lab provides our patients, physicians and community, and regret the need to close the facility. Unfortunately, declining revenues have forced the hospital to take some difficult actions."

Laboratory services will continue to be offered at the Hospital’s main campus on Canisteo St. seven days a week (Monday – Friday 7AM to 8PM; Saturday and Sunday 7:30AM to 3:30PM).

For more information contact Kate Kreger, Director of Business Development and Marketing, at 324-8233.



SJM Welcomes New Hospitalist, Dr. Hope Wisniewski
July 1, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. St. James Mercy welcomes Hope Wisniewski, D.O., who will join the Hospital as a Hospitalist physician, starting July 8, 2010. She is joining the Medical Staff as a Hospitalist with Exigence Hospitalist Services, the Hospital’s provider of Emergency Department and Hospitalist physicians.

Dr. Wisniewski attained her Doctorate of Osteopathy from Midwestern University Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine and completed her hospitalist Residency at St. John Medical Center in Westlake, Ohio. Originally from the Southern Tier, Dr. Wisniewski worked at Olean General Hospital prior to pursuing her Doctorate degree.

As a Hospitalist, Dr. Wisniewski specializes in caring for inpatients during their hospital stay. A Hospitalist acts as the provider and coordinator of care to eliminate much of the wait time for tests, results and consultations. Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, the Hospitalist becomes the center point for communication so that the patient, family, primary care physician, and specialists are well-informed. This expedites the care and treatment process and ensures that patients get the attention they need during their hospitalization.



SJM Welcomes New Adolescent Psychiatrist
June 25, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. St. James Mercy is pleased to announce that Robert W. Whelpley, MD will be joining the Hospital as an Adolescent Psychiatrist for Behavioral Health services, starting June 30, 2010.

Dr. Whelpley attained his Bachelor’s degree in Psychobiology at Binghamton University and his Doctorate of Medicine from Upstate Medical University. He completed his Residency in Psychiatry and a Fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

According to Raja Rao, MD, Chief of Psychiatry at St. James Mercy, "Dr. Whelpley is a highly qualified professional who will enhance the depth of services we offer to adolescent patients in a seven-county area. With the shortage of psychiatric providers across New York State, we are very fortunate that Dr. Whelpley is joining us."

Dr. Whelpley also qualified for a NYS Doctors Across New York loan repayment grant that was awarded to St. James Mercy in 2009. The grant helps new physicians repay their loans from qualified medical schools, in exchange for a minimum five-year commitment to practice in an underserved area.

Originally from Hornell, Dr. Whelpley is the son of Dr. Robert J. Whelpley, a Family Practice physician at St. James Mercy. For more information call 607-324-8881.



New Family Practice/Obstetrics Provider Joins SJM Hospital
June 17, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce that Susan M. Mason, D.O. will be joining the Hospital as a Family Practice/Obstetrics provider for the hospital’s Greenwood and Alfred clinics on July 19, 2010.

Dr. Mason attained her Bachelor’s degree at Worcester (Massachusetts) State College and her Doctorate of Osteopathy from West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine. Originally a resident of Troupsburg, she completed her Osteopathic residency in Family Practice and Manipulative Treatment at Guthrie/Robert Packer Hospital in Sayre, PA.

Dr. Mason will begin seeing patients the week of July 26. To schedule an appointment at the Alfred office (35 Glen St., Alfred) call 607-587-8192. To schedule an appointment at the Greenwood office (Main St., Greenwood) call 607-225-4217.



SJM Scholarship Awarded to Kaleigh Porcaro
May 28, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. St. James Mercy Hospital is pleased to announce that Kaleigh Porcaro has been named its 2010 Memorial Scholarship winner.

Awarded annually to one high school senior, the $500 scholarship was established over 20 years ago. To be eligible, the student must be a St. James Mercy employee or child of an employee, be accepted by an institution of higher learning, and submit an application and letters of reference.

Kaleigh will apply the award toward her education at Alfred State College, where she will pursue a Bachelor Degree in Nursing. During Kaleigh?s senior year at Arkport Central School, she took college classes with Corning Community and Alfred State, and participated in the New Visions program. She has been involved in a number of activities including a significant volunteer background, as well as working a part-time job.

Kaleigh’s parents are father Nick, and mother Kate Porcaro, who is a Department Secretary at St. James Mercy Hospital.

Six talented and ambitious students applied for the 2010 Memorial Scholarship. St. James Mercy congratulates Kaleigh and sends best wishes to her and the other five candidates, as they pursue their careers and continue to serve their communities.



SJM Announces 2010 "Nurse of Excellence" Award During National Nurses' Week May 6-12
May 17, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. The highlight of National Nurses? Week at St. James Mercy is the announcement of the 2010 "Nurse of Excellence" Award winner, Carrie Steffey, RN, and Honorable Mentions, Pam Manktelow, RN, BC, CLC and Bonnie Button, RN. Winner of the 3rd Annual ’Nurse of Excellence’ Award, Carrie Steffey, RN, is the nurse manager of ICU and medical/surgery, and is currently working toward her Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Ms. Steffey’s nomination included accolades such as, "While working as supervisor and clinical lead in ICU, she never hesitated work extra or off shifts to cover open shifts. Carrie always has the patient’s best interest at heart."

Honorable Mention goes to Pam Manktelow, RN, in the MOMS/PCAP Program, and Bonnie Button, RN, Patient and Anticoagulation Education.

The selection process is based on written nominations submitted by peers that demonstrate the following attributes: "clinical proficiency, teamwork, service of excellence inpatient care and contributions to St. James and the community." With over thirty-six different nurses nominated, the committee was challenged in choosing between so many well-qualified and skilled nurses. According to Trish Uldrich, Chief Nursing Officer at St. James Mercy, "Nurses represent the largest group of health care workers in America, at 2.9 million strong. St. James is very fortunate to employ over 200 of these compassionate professionals who play such a vital role in the outcomes of our patient care. Not only do these nurses provide hands-on patient care but they must also be committed to continuing their education throughout their careers." The nursing profession is often described as an art and a science that embraces dedicated people with varied interests, strengths and passions because of the many opportunities the profession offers. Nurses have many roles—from staff nurse to educator to nurse practitioner and nurse researcher—and serve all of them with passion for the profession and with a strong commitment to patient safety. The 2010 theme for National Nurses Week, which begins each year on May 6 and ends on May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, is "Nurses - Caring Today for a Healthier Tomorrow." St. James Mercy honors all 200 of its nursing staff and thanks them for the spirit of care and service they so readily give.



SJM Hospital Takes Major Step Toward Electronic Medical Records
May 13, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. Starting May 17, St. James Mercy Hospital will begin participating as a provider of electronic information to the Rochester Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO). RHIO is a secure health information exchange system that gives authorized medical providers access to essential patient information such as lab results and radiology reports. This is one of several major steps St. James Mercy is taking to enhance timely access to data and improve quality of care.

According to Bonnie Welch, Chief Information Officer at St. James Mercy, the RHIO will help improve the quality of care. "People often visit many different offices and physicians when getting help with a medical condition," she said. "With a RHIO, your information goes where you go. That helps your doctors make more informed decisions about your care with accurate, up-to-date information."

When health information is shared through a RHIO, patients can also avoid repeated testing, get second opinions more easily, and minimize errors caused by hard-to-read handwriting and transcriptions. It also is extremely helpful in the event of a health emergency.

Patients must provide consent for their providers to view information electronically through the RHIO. "Your information is only shared with your doctor if you sign a consent form," said Ms. Welch.

The RHIO has many built-in features that make it highly secure. "Patient information is protected at the hospital or doctor’s office, and is only accessible by authorized users," Ms. Welch said. She noted that most people’s health information is already being shared with other providers via phone, fax or paper as part of the normal course of care.

The state and federal government are promoting the creation of RHIOs to move toward national standards for secure electronic exchange of health information. Eventually all hospitals and physicians who participate in Medicare and Medicaid will be required to join a RHIO.

The Rochester RHIO is one of about 300 in development nationwide, and serves a ten-county region. Including St. James Mercy Hospital, twenty healthcare organizations in the Greater Rochester area are currently participating.

Physicians and consumers can get more information by visiting www.grrhio.org , e-mailing info@grrhio.org , or calling 1-877-865-RHIO (7446).



SJM Commemorates Health Care Auxilian Day
May 12, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. Governor David Paterson proclaimed May 12 as "Health Care Auxilian Day" in New York State. St. James Mercy Hospital is joining hospitals across the state in recognizing the dedicated auxilians who annually donate over five million hours of service to their health care facilities and communities. Over 100 Auxiliary members will be honored by St. James Mercy at a luncheon on June 8.

Founded in 1904, St. James Mercy’s Auxiliary volunteers thousands of hours each year toward fundraising and community service projects. Through their past fundraising efforts, Auxiliary members have purchased much-needed equipment for the hospital and nursing home including ICU beds, furniture for maternity, and grants to support adult day care and McAuley Manor programs. The Auxiliary manages the gift shops at Mercycare and the hospital, as well as coordinates events to benefit the hospital including book fairs, Tree of Life program, uniform sales, food fairs and bazaars. In addition, the Auxiliary was a recipient of the 2009 Health Association of New York (HANYS) "Auxiliary Advocacy Recognition Award" for its commitment as an advocate for St. James Mercy Hospital. St. James Mercy’s Auxiliary is led by Nancy Bartell, President.

According to Mary LaRowe, President and CEO of St. James Mercy, "The Auxiliary makes it possible for us to fulfill our mission—to be a healing presence in our rural communities, and address the needs of the poor, underserved and disadvantaged. These volunteers often work behind the scenes to provide comfort and support to patients, families and staff. We are so fortunate to have this dedicated and talented group, committed to serving the many needs of people who come to us for care."

Across New York State there are more than 75,000 health care auxilians who initiate, fund, and volunteer for a wide variety of patient and family care services. In addition, auxilians provide advocacy support for health care reform. "For 106 years, our Auxiliary members have been active and vital, giving their time, energy and effort to better the lives of patients," said Ms. LaRowe. "They are special people who play a vital role as health care ambassadors to our communities."



Hornell Rotary Partners with SJM for Community Blood Screening
May 10, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. The Hornell Rotary Club has engaged the laboratory services of St. James Mercy Hospital for its annual Community Blood Screening. The screening will be offered from 6:00 to 10:00 AM on Saturday, May 22, 2010 in the St. James Mercy Cafeteria, please use the Canisteo Street Entrance.

The Community Blood Screening Program serves as an early warning system for participants in identifying current or potential health problems. A comprehensive blood screening is conducted for a $35 fee with the results sent to the participant’s physician. Additional screening for Prostate Cancer is available for an additional fee as well.

Interested participants are asked to contact the Community Services Office at St. James Mercy Hospital at (607) 324-8188 to register.



SJM Launches "Flocking" Fundraiser to Support "Relay for Life"
April 29, 2010 - Hornell

St. James Mercy Hospital is sponsoring a "Flocking Flamingo Fundraiser" to benefit Relay for Life to support the American Cancer Society.

For a $10 donation, individuals pay to have a friend’s or family’s yard "flocked" with plastic pink flamingos. The "flocked" victim can then pay a donation to have the flamingos placed in another yard. All proceeds from this good-spirited fundraiser will benefit American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.

Other activities are scheduled in Hornell the week of May 2 to kick off Relay for Life, including "Paint the Town Purple," an opportunity for participating organizations to use the color purple to raise awareness of cancer.

All of the activities over the next three months will culminate in the Relay for Life celebration on August 14th at James St. Park in Hornell. Relay for Life is an overnight community celebration where individuals and teams camp out and take turns walking around a track relay-style to raise funds, and celebrate the lives of those who have had cancer. St. James Mercy will have a team and booth at the August event.

For more information on the Flocking Flamingo Fundraiser contact Becky Baker (607-324-8290) or Carrie Steffey (607-324-8864) at St. James Mercy Hospital.



SJM Celebrates "National Healthcare Decisions Day"
April 5, 2010 - Hornell

In observance of National Healthcare Decisions Day on April 16, staff from St. James Mercy Hospital will host an information table at the Hornell Wegmans pharmacy from 2PM - 6PM. The public is invited to stop by and learn about advance healthcare planning.

Now in its third year, National Healthcare Decisions Day is a collaboration of national, state and community organizations to ensure that all adults with decision-making capacity in the US have the information and opportunity to communicate and document their healthcare decisions. St. James Mercy Hospital is joining 800 other national, state and community organizations to participate in the third annual NHDD on April 16.

The objectives of NHDD are to provide much-needed information to the public, reduce the number of tragedies that occur when a person’s wishes are unknown, and improve the ability of healthcare facilities and providers to offer informed and thoughtful guidance about advance healthcare planning to their patients.

Healthcare planning guidance is available through the Case Management, Social Work, and Spiritual Care offices at St. James Mercy Hospital and McAuley Manor. For more information contact St. James Mercy’s Social Work department at 324-6945.



Guthrie Health, SJM Hospital Explore Possible Affiliation
March 29, 2010 - Hornell

March 29, 2010. Officials from St. James Mercy Hospital, Hornell, NY, announced today that they have entered into a formal agreement with Guthrie Health to explore an affiliation between the two organizations. St. James Mercy Hospital is a member of Catholic Health East, a Catholic health system based in Newtown Square, PA.

"We are focused on exploring options for how to best preserve and enhance the availability of quality health care services to the communities currently served by St. James Mercy Hospital. We?re very excited about the possibilities a relationship with Guthrie offers us," states Mary LaRowe, President and CEO of St. James Mercy Health System. "One of the greatest challenges facing hospitals in rural areas is insuring that our communities are able to attract and retain adequate numbers of primary care and specialty physicians to provide local access to care. Providing physician support is one of Guthrie’s strengths."

Joseph Scopelliti, MD, President and CEO, Guthrie Clinic and Co-CEO, Medical Affairs for Guthrie Health, understands these challenges. "One of the reasons I believe we have been successful throughout the 100-year history of our group practice is that we have a commitment to working collaboratively with others to provide comprehensive care."

LaRowe adds that developing a relationship with a like-minded organization with experience in deploying advanced technologies is another area of interest for St. James Mercy Hospital. "Guthrie is ahead of the curve in terms of its use of digital diagnostic systems and recently put into place a system-wide electronic health record," she said. "Organizations that are successful in implementing these types of systems are truly at the forefront of health care, so we are very interested in learning from Guthrie's experience."

"It’s premature to speculate where these discussions might take us," states Mark Stensager, President and CEO, Guthrie Healthcare System and Co-CEO, Administrative Affairs, Guthrie Health. "We have been successful in partnering with a number of other organizations in ways that fit well within the communities involved. One of our longest affiliations has been with Corning Hospital, the result of which has been the development of a depth and breadth of services unique for a community of that size."

Discussions are expected to proceed for the next few months. More information will be forthcoming once the nature of the relationship is determined.

ST. JAMES MERCY HEALTH SYSTEM Founded in 1890, St. James Mercy Health System is sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas: New York, Pennsylvania, Pacific West Community. St. James Mercy Health System is comprised of St. James Mercy Hospital, McAuley Manor at Mercycare long-term care facility, and various clinics throughout the rural service area. Its 225 beds provide a full range of services including emergency, acute medical and surgical, adult and adolescent psychiatric, obstetrics and gynecology, in-patient addiction treatment, long-term care, adult day care, dialysis, ventilator, and behavioral health day treatment. Special services include sleep disorders studies; cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation; physical, occupational and speech therapy; and a school of radiologic sciences. Its affiliate, Cancer Services of Steuben County, provides education and referral services for cancer screening and treatment.

CATHOLIC HEALTH EAST Catholic Health East is a multi-institutional Catholic health system located in eleven eastern states from Maine to Florida. It includes 34 acute care hospitals, 4 long-term acute care hospitals, 25 freestanding and hospital-based long-term care facilities, 14 assisted-living facilities, 4 continuing care retirement communities, 8 behavioral health and rehabilitation facilities, 32 home health/hospice agencies, and numerous ambulatory and community-based health services. Catholic Health East facilities employ approximately 54,000 full-time employees as partners in ministry.

GUTHRIE HEALTH Guthrie Health is dedicated to providing high-quality and accessible health care that meets the needs of the entire family. Guthrie Health is a not-for-profit health care organization, formed by Guthrie Clinic and Guthrie Healthcare System that includes primary care and specialty physicians, a tertiary care teaching hospital that serves as a Level II Regional Trauma Center, community hospitals, and a research institute as well as home care and a long-term care facility. Guthrie Health offers a wide range of services and programs designed to enhance the health and well-being of those it serves within a six-county region of New York and Pennsylvania.



SJM Warns Public About Increased "C. diff" Infection Risk
March 12, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. In cooperation with the NYS Department of Health, St. James Mercy Hospital is alerting the public about an infectious intestinal disease called Clostrium difficile ("C. diff") that is spreading in the northeast U.S.

C. diff can cause diarrhea and other serious intestinal problems. It is triggered by direct contact with the bacteria, usually when a person touches a contaminated surface or material and then touches his or her mouth, nose or eyes.

"C. diff can pass easily from person-to-person or surface-to-person," said Patricia Butray-Frey, Infection Preventionist at St. James Mercy. "When you touch a contaminated surface or material, you pick up C. diff bacteria. You can then pass them onto whatever you touch next, be it another person or surface."

There has been an increase in a new strain of the bacterium that causes the infection, and recent cases include healthy people who have no risk factors for C. diff. According to the Department of Health, there has been a recent increase in C. diff cases in western and central New York. St. James Mercy has recently seen several patients with the infection.

C. diff spores can survive for weeks or even months on surfaces and materials, she said. "Because of this recent concern, we have taken immediate steps in our hospital and nursing home to increase infection control procedures to minimize the spread of C. diff among patients and staff."

Key risk factors for contracting C. diff infection include:

  • Current or recent antibiotic use
  • Advanced age, especially people with a previous C. diff infection
  • Severe underlying illness or weakened immune system
  • Current or recent stay in a health-care setting
  • Living in a nursing home or long-term care facility
  • Recent gastrointestinal surgery
  • Current use of a nasogastric tube

Proper hand washing is key to avoiding infection, said Ms. Butray-Frey. "We are advising the public to wash their hands often. The same applies to our hospital and nursing staff before entering and before leaving a patient’s room. In addition, we are taking extra precautions when cleaning and disinfecting equipment and furnishings, and advising staff to wear and change out gloves, masks and gowns before entering or exiting a patient’s room. " Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are not considered to be effective against C. diff, she added.

The symptoms of C. diff can range from mild to severe. "Infected people can experience diarrhea, abdominal pain or cramping, fever, nausea and loss of appetite," said Ms. Butray-Frey. "Patients should contact their health provider if symptoms persist or become severe."

She reminds the public that that best prevention against C. diff is hand hygiene. "Washing your hands frequently before and after touching other people or surfaces is the best way to avoid getting this potentially serious infection," said Ms. Butray-Frey. For more information regarding C. diff (Clostridium difficile) visit www.cdc.gov .



SJM Observes "Cover the Uninsured" Week
March 12, 2010 - Hornell

Hornell, NY. St. James Mercy Health is joining hospitals nationwide in observing "Cover the Uninsured" Week, March 14th – 20th.

According to census data, 46 million Americans are uninsured. Nine million are children, and more than 8 out of 10 are in working families. According to Sharon McQuate, VP Mission Services for St. James Mercy, "St. James Mercy’s mission states that we are committed to being a transforming, healing presence within the rural communities we serve, particularly addressing the needs of the poor, underserved and disadvantaged. As such, we have a variety of services already in place to help people get needed health care services," including:

  • Financial Counseling Services, which comprise of staff to assist un-insured and under-insured patients. Several programs are available at St. James Mercy including an interest-free payment arrangement; referral to NYS medical assistance programs, and financial subsidy program. St. James Mercy’s friendly financial counseling specialists help people find the most suitable program, to expedite medical treatment for themselves or family members. To make an appointment, call 607-324-8142 or 607-324-8000.

  • Cancer Services Program of Steuben County provides low-income, uninsured and under-insured women and men access to comprehensive breast, cervical and colorectal cancer screening exams and treatment services. Over 100 health care providers in the greater Steuben Co. area are part of the Cancer Services Program network. To determine eligibility or to enroll, phone 324-8103 or 877-778-6857.

  • MOMS/PCAP Program, which offers on-site Medicaid enrollment for pregnant women to cover their health care needs and those of their unborn baby and any uninsured children. Based on household income, initial coverage is guaranteed for 45 days. Upon completion and approval of the Medicaid application, coverage is provided for the entire pregnancy and two months after delivery, and one year for the baby. Eligibility income guidelines extend to 200% of the federal poverty level. Women with primary medical insurance can also be eligible for Medicaid through the program. Women are referred to MOMS/PCAP by a health care provider. For more information about the program or physician referral, call 607-324-8760.

St. James Mercy also can help patients and families locate a physician. Visit www.stjamesmercy.org and click on "find a physician," or call 324-8000 and ask for the Medical Staff Coordinator.



 
 

St. James Mercy Hospital
411 Canisteo Street
Hornell, NY 14843
(607) 324-8000
information@sjmh.org
www.stjamesmercy.org

 
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