- 5 Star Rated for Treatment of Sepsis - 2007, 2008
- 5 Star Rated for Treatment of Respiratory Failure - 200
Christine Schreyer: “For nurses all it takes is one positive outcome and it’s worth it all the time, and there isn’t a nurse that doesn’t work here that isn’t always striving to get the best positive outcome. So if you even improve one patient it’s worth it all the more. And it’s a continuous effort. It’s constant reeducation because we always want to do the best so we are always looking to make sure that we’re up to date and evidence based.”
Amy Bradley: We’ve gotten a glimpse of some of the many departments throughout Memorial Medical Center recognized for their clinical excellence- but there are also caregivers dedicated to bringing quality care right into your home. Conemaugh Home Health has given thousands of patients across the region piece of mind in knowing that some of the nation’s best caregivers make housecalls. Here’s Communications Coordinator Helene Gleason.
Helene Gleason: You’d never know by looking at him, that just a few weeks ago Ed Cernic, Sr., underwent surgery at Memorial Medical Center. Thankfully, he’s made a speedy recovery, something he attributes to the care and support of his family and one special Conemaugh Home Health caregiver.
CHUCK: When I first met Ed at home, he certainly isn’t in the condition he was in today. I mean, he was basically flat on his back in his easy chair at the mercy of his wife and myself.
CHUCK: part of what we do in Home Health other than reviewing medications and implementing a plan of care that began at the hospital, we also have to teach. That’s what Home Health is about. We taught him and his wife how to perform the abdominal wound care that he needed and also the drain that he had for his wound needed particular attention
ED: He gave me a full examination, the blood pressure, everything, and it worked out very good and from that time on we had a good response from him and his whole staff.
DENNY MUNKO: we recognize that family members and patients are not healthcare experts and that’s where we come in and do a lot of teaching to people, our patients and to the caregivers and I think that to a great extent helps ease that fear.
HELENE: The fear that goes along with being a patient or a family member can also be eased, as Ed learned, by the bond of trust that develops between patient and caregiver.
ED: Well, there is a stress on the family when you’re coming home from a serious surgery like that, and I think it eased that serious feeling because they know that you’re getting good care and when they explained like chuck explained what was going on, what was to go on after while with Home Health Care, it eased my mind and my family and it was very good. He made things very easy to be comfortable, and you joke and you laugh a little bit, even though the pain is still there, but once you get comfortable with the person that’s giving you the care, the biggest part is over.
CHUCK: It’s rewarding to see where Ed was at that point and he’s come to this point and seeing him, you know, back to work.
ED: I do whatever I want to do including driving and everything else, I’m just back on top I guess, but meeting meetings and work work, that’s my life. So I feel very positive about that.
HELENE: Chuck who’s been Home Health Nurse for 14 years, is just one of more than 200 Conemaugh Home Health employees ranging from RNs to speech and physical therapists to medical social workers that serve all or part of a 10-county area.
MUNKO: We provide services for a host of medical conditions and post surgical conditions as well as psychiatric nursing and maternal child care and we do about 120K visits a year, which requires us to drive about 1.1 million miles to and from patient homes.
HELENE: Along with the miles, Conemaugh Home Health keeps racking up the awards. For the second year in a row it’s been named a Home Care Lead Agency, it ranks in the top two percent in the country and top 5 percent in the state for keeping patients out of the hospital and just recently the Agency received its most distinguished recognition to date.
MUNKO: This year were fortunate enough to be named a Top 100 Agency and that’s out of nearly 7500 Medicare Certified Agencies across the country that were assessed so it places us among the best one percent in the Country, and we received that award in large part due to the quality of our patient outcomes and also our quality improvement scores.
ED: It wouldn’t surprise me a bit if they was named a top healthcare unit in the world as far as I’m concerned because I’ve received very good treatment and there’s no way that I could be treated any better.
CAROLE: It’s almost like they once they become a Conemaugh Home Health Nurse, especially the ones we’ve come in contact with, they’re just all wonderful.
MARIA: I got to know Carol in the process of taking care of her mother and then I took care of Carol on different occasions, then I took care of Carol’s husband when he had a problem and then we went back to Carole.
HELENE: Carole Kuzilla of Nanty Glo, who suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, doesn’t hesitate to call Conemaugh Home Health when complications arise.
CAROLE: You know you are going to be taken care of by the nurses, but at the same time you have to learn procedures and things that you have to do for your own welfare because they can be with you 24 hours a day and they tell you about your medicines, which is a wonderful thing.
MARIA: We have little teaching sheets in our computer and I would just have her pick out a medicine or I would pick out one and say okay now you’ve been taking this, these are some of the side effects and I’d read the label, make sure she is taking it the way the doctor ordered it
HELENE: In addition to the care she’s received personally, Carole is especially grateful for the role home health played in helping her mother to remain in the home following a bad fall three years ago.
CAROLE: I mean mother was self-sufficient, she cleaned, she took care of the house and she did the laundry the cooking all of these things. She still was able to do all of those things but now one day later she was unable to care for herself at all let alone get up and walk one step and I didn’t know if I was going to be able to take care of her because of my health. I was afraid for her. I was afraid she might have to go into a nursing home. I mean I know those are some places you have to go do it, but I’m sorry, I never wanted to put my mother there unless there was no other way, and then I found out about the option of home care.
MARIA: We do have a lot of patients that if they didn’t have the nurse to go in they may end up in a personal care home. They could end up back in the hospital, have to go live with another family member and you know those are all options but our goal is to keep them safe and provide them with good care and keep them in, you know, their home.
Carole: I’m sure there are a lot of other people that feel that way too whether it’s a parent, a spouse or a child that they don’t want to be separated and this gives you that option that you don’t have to be separated. Someone will come in and they’ll take care of your loved one.
HELENE: Getting to the Heart of Home Health- while the staff is appreciative for the national honors and attention, it’s the day-to-day that they say they find most rewarding.
MARIA: The award and recognition is wonderful, but taking care of the patients and when one person says thank you, that’s more than any recognition. The recognition is just like icing on the cake.
Amy: Thanks, Helene. With nine offices across the region, Conemaugh Home Health is bound to have a location close by. For more information about this award-winning team of caregivers, or for a location nearest you, contact the Conemaugh Nurse Connection at 1-800-587-5875. You can find out more about the quality outcomes of Conemaugh Home Health and other departments on our website at www.conemaugh.org.
Coming up … throat pain, leg pain even a tooth ache. You’ll hear from patients who had no idea they were having a heart attack.
- Recipient of the HealthGrades Cardiac Care Excellence Award - 2007, 2008
- Recipient of the HealthGrades Coronary Intervention Excellence Award - 2007, 2008
- Ranked Among the Top 5% in the Nation for Overall Cardiac Services - 2007, 2008
- Ranked 5th in PA for Overall Cardiac Services
Dr. Hadeed: I think it’s very important for us to set, to set the standards very high because we would like to be as good as we can get and including establishing new programs and separating ourselves as a tertiary care center in Western Pennsylvania that will provide our patients with a comprehensive complete cardiac care.