Awards & Honors

  • Confluence Health Receives Two Awards from American Heart Association
    11/18/2013

    On November 18, 2013, representatives from Confluence Health’s Cardiology Department attended the American Heart Association’s annual international meeting in Dallas, Texas, where they were presented with the AHA’s silver and bronze awards for outstanding cardiac care.

    Accepting the awards on behalf of Confluence Health were Gregory Eberhart, MD, Gautam Nayak, MD, Joe Hare, RRT, and Natalie Noyd, RN, BSN. Confluence Health was the only hospital in Washington State to receive these prestigious awards, which are bestowed on hospitals that provide the highest quality cardiac care over consecutive reporting periods as outlined by the American Heart Association’s “Get with the Guidelines.”

    Confluence Health congratulates its Cardiology team and all other Confluence Health employees and practitioners involved in the care of cardiac patients, including the Emergency Department, EMS partners, Cath Lab, hospitalists, Respiratory Therapy Department, Radiology Department, Laboratory, ICU, PCU and the Cardiac Rehabilitation Department. These awards would not have been possible without the combined efforts of the care teams and their commitment to providing excellence in patient care.

    Left to right: Joe Hare, RRT; Gautam Nayak, MD; Gregory Eberhart, MD; Natalie Noyd, RN, BSN.

  • Confluence Health Named “Anticoagulation Center of Excellence”
    11/14/2013

    Confluence Health has been recognized as an “Anticoagulation Center of Excellence” by the Anticoagulation Forum. This honor demonstrates Confluence Health’s goal of offering the highest level of care and the best possible outcomes for patients taking antithrombotic medications.

    The Anticoagulation Forum is a multidisciplinary non-profit organization that seeks to improve the quality of care for patients on antithrombotic medications. There are two essential components to the Forum’s Centers of Excellence program: an assessment to determine if an anticoagulation service is operating at the highest level, with recommendations provided for specific areas that can be improved; and a comprehensive, searchable resource center that provides guidelines for improvement.

    To earn the recognition, Confluence Health had to meet the Forum’s rigorous standards in five key areas of patient care. Upon acceptance into the Centers of Excellence program, Confluence Health was granted access to the Anticoagulation Forum’s rich library of resources and tools designed to help healthcare organizations stay current with the changing field of anticoagulation.

  • Omak Clinic Physician Promoted to Clinical Assistant Professor at UW
    7/17/2013

    Robert Weston, MD, was recently promoted to clinical assistant professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine. Dr. Weston is a member of the Family Medicine Department at the Omak Clinic (part of Wenatchee Valley Medical Center) and has been with the organization since 2006.

    "I enjoy the opportunity to help students move forward in their learning, and I’m glad we have the opportunity to do so in a rural clinic,” said Dr. Weston. “It is an honor to be a part of the 40-year teaching relationship the Omak Clinic shares with the University of Washington School of Medicine. Most importantly, I appreciate the willingness of our patients to incorporate the medical students into their visits, helping them on their path to become physicians.”

    Dr. Weston is certified in family medicine by the American Board of Family Medicine. He received his medical degree from the University of Washington and completed his advanced training at Family Medicine Residency of Idaho. In addition to providing great care to whole families, his clinical interests include obstetrics, pediatrics and geriatrics.

  • Central Washington Hospital Recognized for Excellent Care of Heart Attack Patients
    5/9/2013

    Central Washington Hospital has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® Bronze Receiving Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes Central Washington Hospital’s commitment and success in implementing a high standard of care for heart attack patients.

    Each year in the United States, nearly 300,000 people have the most severe form of heart attack, called a STEMI. To prevent death, it’s critical to immediately restore blood flow, either by surgically opening the blocked vessel or by giving clot-busting medication.

    Hospitals involved in Mission: Lifeline® make sure their STEMI patients get the right care they need, as quickly as possible. Mission: Lifeline® focuses on improving care for STEMI patients, which improves care for all heart attack patients. This award formally acknowledges that Central Washington Hospital consistently meets high standards of performance in quick and appropriate treatment of STEMI patients.

    Central Washington Hospital is dedicated to making our cardiac care among the best in the country, said Peter Rutherford MD, CEO. “We are pleased to be recognized for our dedication and achievements in cardiac care, and I am very proud of our team.”

  • Nurses of the Year Winners Include One from WVMC and Two from CWH
    4/29/2013

    The North Central Washington Nurses of the Year winners were recently announced. One of them is from Wenatchee Valley Medical Center, and two are from Central Washington Hospital.

    Joanne Hill, ARNP, is the winner in the category of advancing and leading the profession. Joanne is a primary care provider for adults at Central Washington Hospital’s Internal Medicine Clinic. She has worked as a nurse practitioner since 1980 and is regarded as having paved the way for the use of mid-levels in the Wenatchee healthcare system. She was recently named president of the board of directors of Columbia Valley Community Health. Joanne is greatly respected among her peers for her knowledge in healthcare issues and for looking at the whole patient. Patients and co-workers describe her as flexible, respectful and compassionate.

    Allison Osborne, RN, is the winner in the category of home/community/ambulatory care. Allison is an oncology nurse case manager at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center and is known for multitasking in a very busy department, serving complex patient needs and communicating effectively. She is regarded as very knowledgeable, able to remain calm and effective under pressure, and helpful with her co-workers in every regard.

    Amy Eckert, RN, is the winner in the category of inpatient clinical care. Amy is a charge nurse in the Progressive Care Unit at Central Washington Hospital and is considered an indispensable member of the nursing leadership team in her unit. She also serves as the subject matter expert in Cerner and is regarded as a leader, problem solver, educator and advocate for nursing staff and patients alike. Amy has served on several multidisciplinary hospital improvement teams, and she is planning to pursue her bachelor’s degree in nursing this fall.

    The other NCW Nurses of the Year winners are Patti Kyle, RN (Wenatchee Valley College) in the category of education and mentorship; Jody Buchmann, RN (Columbia Valley Community Health) in the category of patient and staff management; Verna Zuttermeister, RN (retired/Women’s Resource Center) in the category of volunteerism and service; and Marshall Snoddy, RN (Columbia Valley Community Health).

  • Central Washington Hospital Receives National Award for Stroke Care
    4/16/2013

    Central Washington Hospital (CWH) was recently presented with the “Get With The Guidelines Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award” by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. This award recognizes CWH’s commitment and success in implementing excellent care for stroke patients.

    According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is one of the leading causes of death and serious disability in the United States. To help healthcare professionals save lives, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association developed a hospital-based quality improvement program known as “Get With The Guidelines.” Not only does this program give healthcare providers access to up-to-date cardiovascular and stroke science, but it provides customized patient education materials based on the patients’ individual risk profiles.

    CWH qualified for the Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award by demonstrating a minimum of 85 percent adherence to all “Get With The Guidelines—Stroke Quality Achievement” indicators for two or more consecutive 12-month intervals. CWH also achieved 75 percent or higher compliance with six of 10 “Get With The Guidelines—Stroke Quality Measures,” which include aggressive use of medications and smoking cessation aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients.

    “Central Washington Hospital is to be commended for its commitment to implementing standards of care and protocols for treating stroke patients,” said Lee H. Schwamm, MD, chair of the Get With The Guidelines National Steering Committee and director of the TeleStroke and Acute Stroke Services at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. “The full implementation of acute care and secondary prevention recommendations and guidelines is a critical step in saving the lives and improving outcomes of stroke patients.”

  • Dr. Burns is Guest Instructor for North American Spine Society Courses
    6/24/2012

    Douglas Burns, MD—a member of the Physiatry Department at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center—recently accepted invitations from the North American Spine Society to serve as instructor and co-chair for two of its courses. 

    Dr. Burns taught a two-day course on lumbar spinal injections in May 2012 at the Spine Education and Research Center in Burr Ridge, Illinois. Part of the curriculum included teaching other physicians from the U.S., Brazil and Taiwan about spine care and spinal injection procedures.

    Additionally, Dr. Burns has been named co-chair for the North American Spine Society's upcoming "Lumbar Spinal Injections" course taking place in early 2013 at the Spine Care Training Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

    Dr. Burns is board certified in physical medicine/rehabilitation and sports medicine. His specialties include interventional spine care and pain management, non-operative musculoskeletal medicine, and sports medicine. He received his medical degree from the University of Washington, where he also completed a residency in physical medicine and rehabilitation. This was followed by a fellowship in interventional pain at Washington Interventional Spine Associates in Bellevue, Washington.

  • Dr. Daniel Receives Award for Excellence in Teaching
    6/22/2012

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center physician David Daniel, MD, has been selected as a recipient of the 2012 Richard M. Tucker WWAMI Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award, which recognizes enthusiasm and dedication in providing outstanding teaching and service to medical students through the University of Washington Department of Medicine.

    A key factor in Dr. Daniel’s selection was the glowing feedback he received from students he has taught and mentored. One student said that Dr. Daniel “sets a high standard for clerkship directors,” while another student added that Dr. Daniel was “very accessible and took a lot of time to teach.” Undoubtedly they would concur with the praise from another student who noted that Dr. Daniel “went out of his way to make my internal medicine clerkship in Wenatchee a fantastic experience.”

    Along with serving as a clinical associate professor and WWAMI site coordinator for the University of Washington School of Medicine, Dr. Daniel is also an alumnus, having earned his medical degree from the institution in 1986. He joined Wenatchee Valley Medical Center in 1992, and is currently part of the Pulmonary Medicine Department. In addition to being board certified in pulmonary disease, he is also board certified in internal medicine (both through the American Board of Internal Medicine).

  • Two from WVMC are "NCW Nurses of the Year"
    4/23/2012

    The 2012 North Central Washington Nurses of the Year winners were recently announced, and two of them are from Wenatchee Valley Medical Center.

    In the category of advancing and leading the profession, the winner is Katie Kemble, DNP, FNP-C, ARNP, AOCNP. Katie is a member of WVMC's Oncology Department in Wenatchee and has been with the organization since 2003.

    For the ambulatory care category, the winner is Linda Stearns, RN, OCN. Linda is a member of the Radiation Oncology Department and has been with WVMC since 1999.

    The other NCW Nurses of the Year winners are Ashleigh Zutter, RN (Central Washington Hospital) in the category of inpatient clinical nursing; Jenny Capelo, RN, MAE (Wenatchee Valley College) in the category of education and mentorship; LaDora Kempff, RN, CEN (Central Washington Hospital) in the category of staff/patient management; and Laura Gaukroger-Holland, RN, SANE (Central Washington Hospital) in the category of volunteerism and service.

    Congratulations to all of the winners!

  • WVMC's Nuclear Medicine Laboratory Earns National Accreditation
    1/30/2012

    The nuclear medicine laboratory at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center (WVMC) recently earned accreditation through the Intersocietal Commission for the Accreditation of Nuclear Medicine Laboratories (ICANL). Achieving accreditation demonstrates excellence in meeting the high standards of a national certifying body and a strong commitment to providing outstanding nuclear medicine services.

    The accreditation process began with a comprehensive self-evaluation by WVMC’s nuclear medicine staff that required them to assess all aspects of their laboratory. In turn, this gave them an opportunity to augment certain policies and protocols and to validate their quality-assurance programs.

    “The care we provide to our patients has been significantly enhanced through this process,” said Natalie Noyd, RN, manager of WVMC’s Cardiology Department.

    The next step involved submitting actual case studies to the ICANL as well as information concerning the lab’s operations. The materials underwent a confidential peer review by physicians and technologists, after which the ICANL’s board of directors granted WVMC with the accreditation (which must be renewed every three years).

    “This was an incredibly challenging endeavor,” added Ms. Noyd. “I am very proud of the efforts by all of our nuclear medicine staff in Wenatchee and Moses Lake.”

  • "NCW Nurse of the Year" Honors Go to Three from WVMC
    5/11/2011

    Three nurses from Wenatchee Valley Medical Center have been named a 2011 North Central Washington Nurse of the Year.

    In the category of community service, the winner is Jill Milner, RN, who is a certified rehabilitation nurse with over 20 years of experience in that field as both a staff nurse and manager. For the past five years, Jill has worked as a clinical nurse specialist in our Quality and Education Department. Additionally, she serves as a case manager in our Health Buddy Program and puts her fluency in Spanish to good use by working with all of our Spanish-speaking Health Buddy patients. Outside of work, Jill is deeply involved in community service on a local and international scale. In fact, for the past 10 years she has traveled to Guatemala as a volunteer to work with medical staff in hospitals and provide them with nursing education.

    In the category of advancing and leading the profession, the winner is Melanie Thornton, RN, who has been a team leader of the admissions and recovery areas at Wenatchee Valley Hospital’s Surgery Center for the past 10 years. Furthermore, Melanie has served as a preceptor to nursing students from Wenatchee Valley College and has been instrumental in developing PACU competencies and teaching them to staff.

    In the category of mentoring, the winner is Jan Kaiser, RN, who has been a per-diem nurse at Wenatchee Valley Hospital's Walk-in Clinic/Emergency Department for many years as well as an instructor at Wenatchee Valley College. Prior to joining WVMC, Jan spent 19 years as a tech/nurse in the ER at Central Washington Hospital.

    The other 2011 North Central Washington Nurse of the Year recipients include Christine Munly, RN (Central Washington Hospital) in the category of clinical care; Julie McAllister, RN (Central Washington Hospital) in the category of management; and Cathy Meuret, RN (Central Washington Hospital) in the category of teaching.

    Congratulations to all of the winners!

  • Dr. Bennion is Recipient of Good Scout Award
    3/22/2011

    Richard Bennion, M.D., was presented with the 2011 Good Scout Award during the Good Scout Luncheon that took place at the Wenatchee Convention Center on March 22. The keynote speaker at the event was Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna.

    Dr. Bennion is a member of the Ophthalmology Department at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center and has been with the organization for nearly 24 years. He is certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology, and his clinical interests include glaucoma and cataracts.

  • Wenatchee Valley Hospital’s Rehabilitation Center Achieves "CARF" Reaccreditation
    2/15/2011

    The Rehabilitation Center at Wenatchee Valley Hospital—part of Wenatchee Valley Medical Center—recently had its inpatient rehabilitation program reaccredited by CARF International for a three-year period. CARF (the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) is an independent, nonprofit, international accreditor of health and human services.

    According to Wenatchee Valley Hospital’s Director of Operations, Kevin Gilbert, RN, the primary value in renewing the accreditation is to hold the Rehabilitation Center to higher standards of care. Not only does the accreditation process help staff improve their level of service to patients, but it also helps them find ways to become more effective in their responsibilities. Further, the CARF accreditation is an assurance to the greater Wenatchee area that the Rehabilitation Center at Wenatchee Valley Hospital continues to meet performance standards established by a high-profile, respected international accreditor.

    “We are very proud of achieving CARF reaccreditation,” said Gilbert. “It demonstrates the commitment of Wenatchee Valley Hospital to providing high-quality service to our patients.”

    To achieve reaccreditation, the Rehabilitation Center completed a self-evaluation that compared the center’s practices to CARF standards. This was followed by an on-site survey performed by a CARF team comprised of industry peers. In addition to interviewing the hospital’s staff and patients, the surveyors observed organizational practices, reviewed appropriate documentation and suggested ways to improve operations and service.

    The CARF family of organizations accredits approximately 47,000 programs and services at more than 20,000 locations in 17 countries throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia and Africa. Each year, over 8.3 million persons of all ages are served by more than 6,000 CARF-accredited providers.

  • WVMC's "Health Buddy Program" Wins Gold Medal at 2010 URAC Awards
    10/19/2010

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center’s Health Buddy Program was recently awarded a gold medal in the “healthcare consumer empowerment and protection” category from the Utilization Review Accreditation Commission (URAC), a leading independent healthcare quality accrediting organization. WVMC and Bosch Healthcare were presented with the award during the URAC 11th Annual Quality Summit in Chicago, Illinois.

    “Wenatchee Valley Medical Center is proud to be recognized by URAC for our commitment to helping patients live healthier, happier and longer lives,” said Dr. David Weber, CEO and chairman of the board at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center. “The use of technology, like Bosch Healthcare’s Health Buddy System, to support our physicians and nurses in caring for these elders demonstrates our focus on collaborative innovation to improve the lives of the people we serve and the health of our communities."

    Health Buddy is a personalized health-monitoring system (also known as telehealth) provided by Robert Bosch Healthcare that helps Medicare patients with severe chronic illness improve their health. Patients use a Health Buddy appliance at their homes to learn about their conditions, answer questions and provide details on their vital signs. Care managers at WVMC remotely review their patients’ responses and use that information to determine who needs extra or urgent care. Patients have reported that Health Buddy helps them better understand their diseases and take better care of themselves.

    At Wenatchee Valley Medical Center, the driving force behind Health Buddy is the team of Peter Rutherford, M.D. and Lori Smet, R.N. “Dr. Rutherford is our physician champion and one of the reasons we have been successful,” said Lori. “He wears a lot of hats, including contract negotiations with the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services, presenting the program to groups of doctors, quality assurance, writing the algorithms and more.”

    “The team at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center is at the forefront of efforts to incorporate telehealth into its system of care,” said Derek Newell, president of Robert Bosch Healthcare. “Bosch Healthcare is committed to improving the quality of personal healthcare through telehealth, and we are proud to have partnered with the healthcare professionals in Wenatchee to bring this needed technology to their patients.”

    About URAC

    URAC’s 2010 Best Practices Awards in Healthcare Consumer Empowerment and Protection recognizes those healthcare organizations that are actively pursuing practices to advance consumer empowerment and protection in an exceptional, measurable and reproducible way. Entries were judged by a distinguished panel, which included the best and most widely recognized experts in program evaluation, care coordination, health information technology, employer and purchaser decision making, and patient safety. To learn more about URAC’s 2010 Best Practices Awards in Healthcare Consumer Empowerment and Protection, visit www.urac.org.

  • Six Physicians from Wenatchee Valley Medical Center Named “Best Doctors”
    10/7/2010

    Six physicians from Wenatchee Valley Medical Center were recently included in Washington Magazine’s list of “Best Doctors 2010.” Selected were R. Kirby Primm, M.D. (in the category of cardiovascular disease); Paul Ballinger, M.D., and Alan Smith, M.D. (gastroenterology); Peter Rutherford, M.D. (internal medicine); Peter Holden, M.D. (pediatrics); and David Notter, M.D. (medical oncology and hematology). 

    Published annually by Washington Magazine, the list is excerpted from a survey by Best Doctors (a Boston-based company) and contains nearly 1,000 individual medical professionals representing the best of the best in 55 distinct specialties. Only physicians identified by their peers in previous years as the “best doctors” receive the Best Doctors in America survey.

    About the Physicians

    R. Kirby Primm, M.D., is certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular diseases by the American Board of Internal Medicine. His career at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center spans 26 years.

    Paul Ballinger, M.D., and Alan Smith, M.D., are both certified in internal medicine and gastroenterology by the American Board of Internal Medicine. Dr. Ballinger has been with Wenatchee Valley Medical Center for 17 years, and Dr. Smith has been with the organization for 12 years.

    Peter Rutherford, M.D., is certified in internal medicine by the American Board of Internal Medicine and has been with Wenatchee Valley Medical Center for 20 years. Currently he is a member of the medical center’s administration and serves on its board of directors.

    Peter Holden, M.D., is certified in pediatrics and developmental/behavioral pediatrics by the American Board of Pediatrics. He has been with Wenatchee Valley Medical Center for six years.

    David Notter, M.D., recently retired after 32 years at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center, where he was the director of the Oncology Department.

  • Dr. Thomas Carlson Receives Award from American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer
    8/24/2010

    Thomas Carlson, M.D., of Wenatchee Valley Medical Center has been given the Outstanding Performance Award by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer (CoC). Dr. Carlson was nominated for the award because of the outstanding leadership and guidance he has exhibited while serving as a cancer liaison physician between the CoC and the Cancer Treatment Center at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center.

    Established in 1922 by the American College of Surgeons, the Commission on Cancer is dedicated to improving the survival and quality of life for cancer patients. As a CoC cancer liaison physician, Dr. Carlson is serving a three-year appointment and is among a national network of over 1,600 volunteer physicians responsible for providing leadership and direction to establish, maintain and support their facilities’ cancer programs. Cancer liaison physicians are an integral part of cancer programs accredited by the CoC.

    Dr. Carlson’s goal as a physician is to bring exceptional cancer medicine to central Washington. He is certified in radiology and radiation oncology by the American Board of Radiology, and he has an interest in clinical trials and intensity modulated radiation therapy. He received his medical degree from the University of Arizona College of Medicine and completed a four-year residency in radiation oncology at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Ohio. Dr. Carlson joined Wenatchee Valley Medical Center in 2004.

  • Wenatchee Valley Medical Center Named Finalist in URAC Awards
    8/12/2010

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center has been named a finalist in the Best Practices in Health Care Consumer Empowerment and Protection Awards and will be honored at the 11th Annual Quality Summit sponsored by URAC (a national health care accreditation organization).

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center was selected for its “Health Buddy Program”—a personalized home health monitoring system that uses technology to help Medicare patients with severe chronic illness reduce their health care costs and have healthier, happier, longer lives.

    Patients participating in the program use a Health Buddy appliance at their homes to learn about their conditions, answer questions about their behavior and provide details on their vital signs. The process takes less than five minutes each day, and no computer skills are necessary.

    Care managers at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center remotely review their patients’ responses and use that information to determine who needs extra or urgent care. Patients have reported that the Health Buddy Program helps them better understand their diseases and take better care of themselves.

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center’s awards entry was chosen by a panel of expert judges from numerous health care disciplines. All 30 finalists will present their programs at URAC’s 11th Annual Quality Summit (October 5–7, 2010, in Chicago, IL.), where winners will be announced in the Platinum, Gold, Silver, Bronze and Honorable Mention categories.

  • “Nurse of the Year” Honors Bestowed on Two from Wenatchee Valley Medical Center
    4/26/2010

    Recipients are Kelli Van Wagner, RN, and Anita Ashenbrenner, RN.

       
          
    Kelli Van Wagner, RN                   Anita Ashenbrenner, RN 

    Two Wenatchee Valley Medical Center nurses have been named “Nurse of the Year” for North Central Washington. Kelli Van Wagner, RN, took top honors in the category of clinical care, and Anita Ashenbrenner, RN, was awarded for her excellence in the category of mentoring.

    Other Nurse of the Year recipients included: Cindy Johnston from Wenatchee High School in the category of teaching; Marlene Stoehr from CVCH in the category of management; Ginny Heinitz from CWH in the category of advancing and leading; and Suzy Beck of Medstar in the category of advancing and leading.

     

     

  • Wenatchee Valley Medical Center Named 2010 “Tech Savvy Business of the Year”
    4/16/2010

    WVMC is recognized for its cutting-edge da Vinci Surgical Robot.

     

     

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center has been named the 2010 “Tech Savvy Business of the Year” by the Greater Wenatchee Area Technology Alliance (GWATA). This award honors an organization that has successfully applied technology to its operations to improve efficiencies.

     

    In particular, WVMC was recognized for using its da Vinci Surgical Robot to perform minimally invasive procedures, offering patients shorter recovery times and better local treatment options. Shown above are photos of the da Vinci robot and the robotic surgery team. Pictured from left to right are: 

     

    Top Row: Kelly DeWolf, RN; Chrissy Bell, RN; Dr. Rita Hsu; Dr. Dennis Utley; Dr. Travis Clark; Dr. Joe Pazona; Fred Schuenemann, CST

     

    Bottom Row: Richelle Watts, RN; Darian Frank, RN; Suzy Sprauer, RN; Siobhan Moore, RN; Darla Hodges, RN; Melanie Thornton, RN

     

    Not Pictured: Dr. Tim Barnwell, Dr. Deb Witham, Dr. Carter Willis, Dr. David Daniel

     

    GWATA is a regional organization promoting a vibrant technology-based economy and supporting innovators around North Central Washington. For the past decade, it has recognized technology-based businesses and entrepreneurs at its annual Innovators Award Luncheon. 

     

    This year’s event was held April 6 at the Wenatchee Convention Center, drawing a record attendance of over 250 local technology professionals and business leaders. The luncheon also featured a multimedia presentation highlighting the past 10 years of technological innovation in North Central Washington.

     

    For more information about GWATA, and for the complete list of 2010 award nominees, visit www.gwata.org.

  • Wenatchee Valley Medical Center's Echocardiography Labs Granted National Accreditation
    1/5/2010

    WVMC is recognized by national accreditation board dedicated to ensuring high quality patient care.

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center's echocardiography labs have been granted accreditation by the Intersocietal Commission for the Accreditation of Echocardiography Laboratories (ICAEL). This is a national accreditation board dedicated to ensuring high quality patient care.

    The Medical Director of the Echocardiography Lab is Gautam Nayak, MD. The cardiac sonographers are Technical Director Deborah Parks, RDCS, Amy Swope, RDCS, and Mike Brown, RDCS, RVT at WVMC in Wenatchee. Kelli Lewis, RDCS is the cardiac sonographer at WVMC's Moses Lake Clinic, and Carly Morrison, RDCS is at WVMC's Omak Clinic.

    Echocardiography is a complex imaging technique that relies on the experience and training of both the physician and sonographer. Their interpretive and technical abilities determine the diagnostic accuracy of an echocardiographic examination. The ICAEL evaluates the quality of these and other critical elements of an echocardiography laboratory. The ICAEL is a non-profit organization established with the support of the American Society of Echocardiography, the American College of Cardiology and the Society of Pediatric Echocardiography.

  • Dr. Gill Receives 2009 Excellence in Teaching Award
    6/15/2009

    Dr. Gill nominated for combination of humanism, clinical acumen, and outstanding teaching.



    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center's Dr. John Gill is the recipient of the 2009 Richard M. Tucker Excellence in Teaching Award, which recognizes his outstanding teaching and service with the University of Washington Department of Medicine. Dr. Gill, who works in Internal Medicine, is himself a 1972 graduate of the University of Washington School of Medicine. He has been with WVMC since 1978.

    Below is an excerpt from Dr. Gill's nomination for this award:

    "During my medical school clerkships, I've been fortunate to work with many attending physicians who've taken the time to mold me as a budding doctor. I'm truly thankful for all of these excellent educators, but one particular physician, Dr. John Gill, stands out from the rest for his combination of humanism, clinical acumen, and outstanding teaching.

    "It's true that many patients appreciate their doctors, but I've never observed more meaningful physician-patient relationships than with Dr. Gill. He repeatedly does all he can to ensure his patients are getting the best care -- from walking down the hall to consult a specialist colleague about a particular question (rather than calling, because, as Dr. Gill says, "They take you more seriously when you're standing right there"), to battling with insurance companies, to writing personal letters about what lab results really mean or gentle reminders for preventive care.

    "One personal letter to a patient referenced a patient's mother's death from colon cancer and reiterated the importance of colonoscopes in a non-pushy, non-threatening way. Letters to patients about results such as hemglobin-A1c explained how this related to the patient's baseline and had a congratulatory or encouraging note, depending on the circumstances. Dr. Gill's manner engendered a true partnership with his patients.

    "Medical students have a plethora of questions, and I'm no different. Often, these inquiries tax an attending physician's encyclopedia of knowledge (and I'm not saying that's a bad thing, or that attending doctors should know all the answers). With Dr. Gill, I could ask the most seemingly obscure question, and he'd have the answer. He was always up to date on the latest journal articles. One time after we had a patient with prostate cancer, he answered my questions and then the next day brought in an article he'd read from the current new England Journal of Medicine about the management of prostate cancer. ... Direct involvement with patients cements my knowledge, and Dr. Gill went above and beyond to demonstrate physical exam findings whenever possible.

    "I highly recommend Dr. Gill for an outstanding teaching award. His exceptional advocacy for patients and students is enough of a reason, but perhaps even more of a testament to his dedication to medical teaching is his simple role modeling for students. After working more than 20 years as a general internist in Wenatchee, he maintains a genuine excitement for his job. He embodies what I think of as an ideal doctor."

  • Two WVMC Nurses Earn Regional Honors
    4/28/2009

     
    Diana Carty, RN and Mary Gunkel, RN

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center nurses Diana Carty, RN and Mary Gunkel, RN were selected for the 2009 Nurseweek Regional Nursing Excellence Awards. They join four other nurses from the North Central Washington region who are now eligible for the Mountain West Regional Excellence Awards, which covers Washington, Oregon, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada.

    Diana, who was selected in the Clinical Care category, has been with WVMC since 1998 and is currently an RN in our Clinical Services Department. Before joining WVMC, Diana worked for 10 years in a rural mission hospital in Haiti.

    Mary, who is also an RN, was selected in the Management Category and is WVMC's Area Manager for Medical Oncology, Infusion, Tumor Registry and Nephrology. She joined WVMC in 2006.

    The categories and nurses from our area who were selected include:

    • Clinical Care: Diana Carty (Wenatchee Valley Medical Center)
    • Community Service: Michelle Murphy (Central Washington Hospital)
    • Management: Mary Gunkel (Wenatchee Valley Medical Center)
    • Mentoring: Christy Stubblefield (Central Washington Hospital)
    • Advancing & Leading the Profession: Sue Epoch (Central Washington Hospital)
    • Teaching: Mary Zontek (Wenatchee School District)
  • WVMC Selected as Finalist for Tech Savvy Business of the Year
    4/7/2009

    "Our technical abilities compared to other medical organizations is very high, and it's our plan to keep going in that direction," said Dr. William Gotthold ...



    Propelled by the success of a state-of-the-art Computerized Medical Record system, Wenatchee Valley Medical Center was chosen as one of the top three finalists for the Tech Savvy Business of the Year Award presented by the Greater Wenatchee Area Technology Alliance.

    "Our technical abilities compared to other medical organizations is very high, and it's our plan to keep going in that direction" said Dr. William Gotthold in a videotaped speech prepared for the nomination and shown at the GWATA 2009 Innovators Award Luncheon held Tuesday, April 7, at the Wenatchee Convention Center.

    Dr. Gotthold, WVMC's Associate Medical Director and Medical Informatics Officer, said WVMC made a big push for the Computerized Medical Record, which allows physicians to instantly access important patient information from the exam room, medical offices or even a physician's home in an emergency. In addition, Dr. Gotthold said the electronic record installation would not have been possible without the infrastructure provided by area PUD fiber programs, which, for example, makes it possible for distant medical offices to quickly relay X-ray images back and forth. "Our dream would be for the PUDs to continue to develop" the fiber program, Dr. Gotthold said.

    The two other finalists for the award were Crunch Pak, an industry leader in fresh sliced apples, and Moses Lake Industries, which was named the award winner for its leading role in computer chip manufacturing.
  • Outstanding Achievement Award For WVMC Cancer Program
    3/16/2009

    "I am honored to work with a team that can accomplish so much," said WVMC's Cancer Care Area Manager Mary Gunkel ...

    The Cancer Treatment Center at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center has been rated one of the nation’s top cancer treatment facilities by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer (CoC). The Outstanding Achievement Award recognizes WVMC for meeting the highest standards in important areas of patient care.

     

    “I am honored to work with a team that can accomplish so much,” said WVMC’s Cancer Care Area Manager Mary Gunkel. “We have an excellent Cancer Program, and this is a wonderful recognition of that.”

     

    WVMC is one of 93 facilities across the United States to receive the CoC’s Outstanding Achievement Award, which represents approximately 19 percent of the 478 cancer care programs evaluated in 2008. In addition, WVMC was one of 20 sites to earn the honor as a new program.

     

    The on-site evaluation found WVMC’s cancer program provides quality care to cancer patients by meeting high standards in six important areas:

    • Cancer committee leadership
    • Data management
    • Clinical services
    • Research
    • Community outreach
    • Quality improvement

    Some of the services offered at WVMC's Cancer Treatment Center include providing state-of-the-art pre-treatment evaluation, staging, treatment and clinical follow-up for cancer patients. A Cancer Committee Team, made up of physicians, nurses and other medical staff from different departments leads the cancer program by setting goals, monitoring cancer related activity and evaluating patient outcomes to improve patient care. Weekly clinical cancer conferences provide a forum for patient consultation and contribute to physician and staff education. WVMC also maintains an ongoing quality improvement program, cancer registry and database to help monitor quality of care and cancer statistics.

  • Dr. Rossi Named Associate Editor for Arthroscopy Journal
    1/16/2009

    Dr. Rossi is a member of the Arthroscopy Association of North America and has been a reviewer for "Arthroscopy" since 2002 ...



    Dr. Michael Rossi, the Director of Sports Medicine at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center, was recently named an Associate Editor for Arthroscopy: The Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery. Dr. Rossi is a member of the Arthroscopy Association of North America and has been a reviewer for Arthroscopy since 2002. He has been on the Editorial Board since 2006.

    Dr. Rossi is also a member of the United States Ski and Snowboard Team medical staff and is the team physician for the Wenatchee Wild Hockey Team, Wenatchee Valley College, and local high school teams. He is also a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery and has earned Subspecialty Board Certification in Orthopaedic Sports Medicine. His medical special interests include Sports Medicine, Arthoscopy (knee, shoulder, ankle, elbow) and General Orthopedics and joint reconstruction.

    Dr. Rossi has been with WVMC since July 2003.
  • Washington State Medical Association Recognizes WVMC for Safety
    10/1/2008

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center was awarded the Washington State Medical Association’s William O. Robertson Patient Safety Award for Excellence...

    Wenatchee Valley Medical Center was awarded the Washington State Medical Association’s William O. Robertson Patient Safety Award for Excellence. The WSMA Executive Committee selected WVMC to receive the award for the "Patient Profile" project.

    The award was presented to Casey Brown and Sarah Battis-Johnson, of the Quality & Education department, and Medical Director Dr. Stu Freed, at the opening session of the Annual Meeting of the Washington State Medical Association on Friday, September 26, 2008, at the Davenport Hotel in Spokane. The award was presented by Brian P. Wicks, MD, President of WSMA.

    The WSMA established the William O. Robertson Patient Safety Award in order to recognize innovative and creative patient safety activities, especially in the ambulatory setting.

    Dr. Peter Rutherford (who oversees outpatient quality initiatives and metrics) Sarah and Casey submitted the Patient Profile project. The goal of the Patient Profile project was to create a standardized document in the Computerized Medical Record that would communicate information about a patient’s past medical history, social history, allergies, medications, past surgeries, lab results, and various health maintenance items in a condensed, quickly accessible, and easy to understand format, and also to ensure that the information in the Patient Profile was current and accurate.

    At the end of 2006 – 50% patients had a completed, current profile. By the end of 2007 – 85% patients had a completed and current profile, with some practices reaching an over 99%.

  • Gail Feinman, Internal Medicine Physician, Honored with Excellence in Teaching Award
    9/22/2008

    Dr. Feinman was named one of Five University of Washington clinical faculty members recognized with the 2008 WWAMI Excellence in Teaching Awards...

    Gail Feinman, MD, internal medicine physician at Wenatchee Valley Medical Center, was named one of Five University of Washington clinical faculty members recognized with the 2008 WWAMI Excellence in Teaching Awards. Dr. Feinman is a clinical instructor of medicine for the University of Washington School of Medicine.

    The awards, sponsored by the U.W. Department of Medicine, honor enthusiasm in and dedication to teaching medical students and residents. The awards are given each year to teachers and coordinators in the WWAMI Medical Education Program, which includes medical school and graduate medical education sites in Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana, and Idaho.

    Along with Dr. Feinman, this year's recipients are:

    • Judy Benson, MD, clinical associate professor of medicine, Spokane. Benson is the program director of the Internal Medicine Residency Spokane program.
    • Jonathan McDonagh, MD, clinical instructor of medicine, Soldotna, Alaska. McDonagh is an internal medicine physician, and is the coordinator for the Soldotna medical student clerkship.
    • Steve Gerstner, MD, clinical associate professor of medicine, Billings, Montana. Gerstner is an internal medicine physician at the Billings Clinic, and is the coordinator for the Billings medical student clerkship.
    • William Bekemeyer, MD, clinical associate professor of medicine, Missoula, Montana. Bekemeyer is a pulmonary and critical care physician, and practices at the Western Montana Clinic.

    WWAMI is an enduring partnership between the University of Washington School of Medicine and the states of Wyoming, Alaska, Montana, and Idaho. The WWAMI name is derived from the first letter of each of the five cooperating states. The WWAMI program's purpose is to provide access to publicly supported medical education across the five-state region.

    The UW Medicine School of Medicine maintains a Dean's Office in each of the five states. These offices oversee clinical medical education for the School of Medicine within their regions, providing support services for the local clerkships and students rotating among them. WWAMI focuses not only on medical students but on students in K-12, college students, medical school graduates in residency and physicians in community practice.

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