Floyd Medical Center is now offering online childbirth classes for expectant parents. These online classes help prepare parents-to-be for their baby's upcoming birth in a flexible format that meets their busy schedule.
Classes take expectant parents through all aspects of childbirth using videos, animations, worksheets, definitions and checklists. Topics covered include:
Completing the online class, including the video clips, takes about four to five hours. The cost for this course is $65. It is not covered by Medicaid.
"There are many benefits of an online class including the convenience of learning at home when schedules and life are hectic and an in-person class is not possible," said Kellie Pearson, Director of Women and Children's Services with Floyd Medical Center. "It allows expectant parents to review content as many times as they wish or skip sections they are not interested in."
Floyd also offers two options for in-person classes: a six-week course held on Thursday evenings and a one-day Saturday class.
For more information about online childbirth classes, call 706.509.6548 or go to Floyd.org/childbirth to register.
An agreement reached by Polk Medical Center and Blue Cross Blue Shield will make it more affordable for Polk County residents to access all of the hospital's services beginning May 1.
“This is good news for those patients in our community who have Blue Cross Blue Shield," said Matt Gorman, Polk Medical Center Administrator. “This gives people the ability to access care locally, which will minimize time they have to spend away from family and work."
Gorman said the support of State Rep. Trey Kelley, R-Cedartown, was crucial in getting the issue resolved. Kelley helped hospital representatives gain access to key leaders at Blue Cross Blue Shield.
“Rep. Kelley has been an ally of ours throughout this entire journey," Gorman said. “For him, it was as much of an effort on behalf of his own constituents as it was for the hospital. Without his support, I don't know if this issue would have garnered the attention it deserved. He is looking out for his community, and he knows it is important to access health care close to home."
Kelley said he's excited an agreement has been reached.
“This agreement will allow all those patients in our community who have Blue Cross Blue Shield to have access to their local hospital," Kelley said. “I appreciate all the efforts of Polk Medical Center officials for getting this done. Polk Medical Center is a tremendous asset for our community and now even more residents of our community will get to benefit from the services they offer."
To help ensure that patients discharged from the hospital receive the care they need to stay healthy and reduce their chances of being readmitted to the hospital, Floyd is opening a Transitional Care Clinic.
The clinic will open March 26 for patients who have been discharged from Floyd Medical Center or Polk Medical Center but who do not have a primary care doctor to provide follow-up care.
“Our goal is to keep patients healthy after they are discharged," said Al Davis, Floyd Primary Care Network Administrator. We want to help them understand and manage their disease, which gives them a better quality of life," he said.
Hospital patients who do not have an appointment with a primary care provider will be seen at the clinic within three to five days after discharge.
“Studies show that patients who are seen by a primary care provider within seven to 14 days after hospital discharge are less likely to be readmitted. Our clinic will see patients within three to five days after hospital discharge," Davis said. Patients without a provid-er will be seen for a maximum of 30 days after hospital discharge.
Appointments for patients will be made before they are discharged from the hospital. Once an appointment has been made, a staff member from the clinic will visit a patient in the hospital to initiate the care process and confirm the post-discharge appointment at the clinic. In addition to providing routine medical care, staff will:
“We have a list of physicians throughout our service area that are accepting new pa-tients. We will work with patients to find out where they would like to go," said Davis.
The Transitional Care Clinic is located in the 330 Physicians Center, Suite 104, Rome, GA 30165, and will be open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Patients will be seen by appointment only. Dr. Anthony Nazione will serve as the medical director. Kimberly Keel, FNP-C, will serve as the clinic's nurse practitioner.
A Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) that has already shown successful results with Floyd Medical Center employees will soon be available to the public through a $10,000 grant from the Georgia Department of Public Health.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Diabetes Prevention Program is designed to help people make modest lifestyle changes to reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes by more than 50 percent.
Certified lifestyle coaches help participants reach the following goals during their year-long commitment:
“It's a tremendous benefit to have a program available to prevent a lifetime of disease," said Traci Tillery, Director of Nursing Specialty Services at Floyd. “We have already seen the positive results this program has had on our own employees. All of our year-long participants lost between 5 to 7 percent of their body weight and increased their activity levels to at least 150 minutes. As a result, many of them brought their fasting blood glucose levels into the normal range."
Individuals who meet one of the following criteria may be eligible for this program and are invited to attend an information session to learn if they qualify:
Six half-hour sessions are scheduled to provide details about the program:
Attendees will receive a free diabetes screening at the meeting.
“We don't tell program participants what to eat. Instead, we encourage them to make healthier decisions about foods they already eat so that they can cut their risk of getting type 2 diabetes and its complications in half," said Frances Willingham, Coordinator of the Floyd Diabetes Center of Excellence and the Diabetes Prevention Program.
“We ask them to keep a food diary and an activity log, and we teach them how to count calories and fat grams. It's really about providing encouragement, education and support," said Willingham.
Type 2 diabetes is a complex disease that can cause a number of complications that include:
“Most people don't understand the importance of preventing type 2 diabetes," Tillery said. “If you drink a glass of sweet tea, your body essentially becomes saturated with sugar, causing your pancreas to produce insulin. Over a period of time due to burnout, the pancreas decreases insulin production, which can result in type 2 diabetes."
“In addition, your arteries are normally flexible like a trampoline. As type 2 diabetes causes changes in your body, your blood vessels become hardened like PVC pipes. This causes problems with poor circulation, leading to a greater risk of heart attack and stroke," Tillery added.
For more information, contact a diabetes educator at 706.509.5184 or email
Floyd Emergency Medical Services (EMS) will host two, free lifesaving classes on Saturday, March 31. While the events fall on national Stop the Bleed Day, hands-only CPR and general first aid will also be included with training to stop potentially fatal bleeding.
“All citizens can benefit from this opportunity to learn these lifesaving skills," said Bud Owens, Director of Floyd EMS.
Those wishing to take the training can go to either session at EMS headquarters located at 500 Riverside Parkway, Rome, GA 30161. The first session will be held from 8 - 10:30 a.m. and the second from 11 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Both will include Stop the Bleed training, hands-only CPR and general first-aid training.
“The top cause of preventable death in trauma is bleeding," said Owens. “Twenty percent of people who have died from traumatic injuries could have survived with quick bleeding control. The national initiative is focused on taking this across the nation to train our citizens to react to any type traumatic injury to save lives."
The national Stop the Bleed campaign was initiated by the White House in late 2015. In early 2017, the Georgia Trauma Foundation, Georgia Trauma Commission, the Georgia Society of the American College of Surgeons and the Georgia Committee on Trauma launched the program statewide. The state approved funding to provide 12 bleeding control kits for every public school in the state.
Floyd has already held Stop the Bleed training for school nurses in the Floyd County, Rome City and Polk County school systems.
Hands-only CPR is CPR without mouth-to-mouth breaths. A person who experiences a heart attack has the best chance of survival when CPR is performed immediately. Hands-only CPR has been shown to be just as effective as conventional CPR in saving lives and can be performed easily by any member of the general public who has received training.
“It is recommended for use by people who see a teen or adult suddenly collapse in an 'out-of-hospital' setting (such as at home, at work or in a park)," Owens said. “It provides effective cardiopulmonary resuscitation until more advanced personnel can arrive to take over and provide additional treatment."
Anyone interested attending the March 31 training can call Maj. Rick Cobb, with Floyd EMS, at 706.509.3820 or register online.
Beginning Monday, March 12, Floyd Medical Center and Polk Medical Center will lift visitation restrictions that have been in place to protect patients from catching the flu since early January.
“Positive flu results have trended down in the past three weeks," said Sheila Bennett, Senior Vice President and Chief of Patient Services at Floyd. “Based on the downward trend, visitor restrictions should be lifted as of March 12."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, which tracks flu cases nationwide, has confirmed that the number of positive tests for the flu nationwide has decreased slowly but steadily in the past two weeks.
Since January, Floyd had discouraged visits by children younger than 13, non-family members and anyone exhibiting possible flu-like symptoms.
Despite lifting restrictions, Bennett says people still need to take precautions. The flu season can linger into late spring in Georgia. She offers the following flu-prevention tips:
Cover coughs or sneezes. Cough into the bend of the elbow, and cover your nose when you sneeze. If you use tissues, throw them away immediately – and then wash your hands.
Don't touch your eyes, nose or mouth. Touching any of these areas moves germs from the hands into the body.
Wash hands often. Use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available. This is especially important after using the restroom, before preparing food, after being in public areas, and before and after caring for a sick person.
Stay home from work or school with any flu-like symptoms. The CDC recommends that you stay at home for at least 24 hours after a fever is gone, except to get medical care. This fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.
Get a flu vaccine. The flu virus will continue to circulate for weeks, so it's not too late to get the flu vaccine. The CDC recommends the vaccine for everyone over the age of 6 months. This vaccine can help prevent the flu or lessen its severity. Floyd Primary Care offices and Floyd Urgent Care offices have vaccines available.
"As a nurse in Floyd's anesthesia department, Patty Burney has been a consistent voice of wisdom and experience for her co-workers for 40 years," said Floyd President and CEO Kurt Stuenkel.
"What I really like about her is once she identifies a problem, she also offers a well-thought out solution. So I congratulate her and hope she finds a way to offer us 40 more years of service," said Becky Lowrey, M.D., Medical Director of Surgical Services at Floyd.
Floyd President and CEO Kurt Stuenkel honors Patty Burney for her 40 years of service.
The annual Celebration of Service pays tribute to Floyd's dedicated staff and departments that work to deliver quality, compassionate health care. Burney was one of many employees honored for their lengthy, dedicated service.
Don Taylor and Judy Hicks were recognized for 35 years of service.
"He's been a mentor to so many people here," Robby Hill, Assistant Director of EMS, said of Taylor, a paramedic. "He's a legacy to our department. He's going to be very sorely missed." Although officially retired, Taylor has been helping out the department in a part-time capacity.
Hicks, who retired in 2017, was a secretary for EMS and had worked in a number of departments, including the Switchboard and Admissions.
Bud Owens, EMS Director, said Hicks' knowledge helped him in his transition when he came to Floyd a decade ago.
"She was always a very caring person who went out of her way to help anyone," said Robin Eklund, Office Coordinator with EMS.
Four employees were recognized for 30 years of service, including Sherail Jones, accounting; Cindy Lewis, Pediatrics; Cindy Moran, Willowbrooke at Floyd and Sheila Roberts, Rehabilitation Services. Forty-eight others were recognized for years of service ranging from 15 to 25 years.
Karen Sablon, Director of Rehabilitation Services, was honored with the President's Award.
"If there is a cause that requires a champion, this person is among the first to volunteer for that role," Stuenkel said about Sablon before announcing the winner. "If there is a co-worker who needs encouragement, this individual is ready with a smile, a kind word or an inspirational story. If a need is identified in our organization, this year's recipient can be counted on to rally the troops and will be at the front of line, leading the charge."
Sablon's "vision, eye for strategy, awareness of personal dynamics and commitment to Floyd's success have resulted in programs that have given Floyd unparalleled access and visibility in our community," Stuenkel added.
Floyd President and CEO Kurt Stuenkel presents the President's Award to Karen Sablon.
Joseph Herren, M.D., was named Physician of the Year. Dr. Herren practices with Floyd Primary Care at Rome Internal Medicine. The award honors the Floyd physician who has provided leadership and has demonstrated outstanding support of the organization and its mission.
The Physician Practice of the Year was awarded to the Floyd Primary Care Office of Joe Vaughn, M.D. and Tammy Gladney, nurse practitioner. The honor goes to the practice that achieves success by exhibiting outstanding performances in patient satisfaction, quality measures, financial measures and organizational support.
The Executive Team Award, chosen by Floyd's leadership, was given to Ken Ozment, Director of Plant Facilities.
Front row, from left: Vice President and Chief Information Officer Jeff Buda, Director of Plant Facilities Ken Ozment, President and Chief Executive Officer Kurt Stuenkel, Vice President, Support Services David Early and Polk Medical Center Administrator Matt Gorman. Back row, from left: Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Sonny Rigas, Corporate Compliance Officer Julie Rogers, Vice President Greg Polley, Vice President, Revenue Cycle Management Rick Childs, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Rick Sheerin, Chief Human Resources Officer Beth Bradford and Corporate Counsel Tommy Manning.
Floyd Corporate Health earned the Department of the Year Award.
Floyd President and CEO Kurt Stuenkel (right) presents the Department of the Year Award to Floyd Corporate Health's Director Chris Butler (left) and Assistant Director Jamie Brannon.
Other awards included Patient Satisfaction Excellence Award – Floyd Center for Joint Replacement; Excellence in People-Focused Initiatives – Floyd Fit Program; Quality Excellence Award – Polk Chest Pain Certification; Financial Excellence – Tray Tracking for Central Sterile Processing; and Strategic Excellence Award – School Nurse Program.
The Floyd Center for Advanced Spine Care, which officially opened today at Floyd Medical Center, brings together an experienced care team that provides state-of-the art surgery to help patients recover quickly and remain active.
“This is not your typical hospital program or hospital stay," said Harbin Clinic neurosurgeon Dr. John Cowan, who was among the team of caregivers who worked nearly a year to make the center a reality. “First and foremost, we focus on wellness rather than sickness. We see our surgical patients as having the potential of a better quality of life by having spine surgery."
The team of surgeons and specially trained nurses, therapists and technicians provides pre-surgery and post-surgery education, a nationally recognized surgical program and a full range of rehabilitation services, if needed.
The result of this new approach to surgery is less pain, quicker recovery and superior outcomes.
According to CareChex, which provides clinical, financial and patient satisfaction information to health care providers and consumers, Floyd is among the top 10 percent in the nation and No. 1 in the market for medical excellence in spinal surgery and spinal fusion.
The Floyd Center for Advanced Spine Care provides surgical procedures for the entire spine, from the neck to the lower back, many of them minimally invasive. The patient-centered care model also includes services well before and after surgery.
Floyd Medical Center and Polk Medical Center are restricting visitors because of a rapid increase in flu cases.
These measures are being taken to protect patients, members of the public and hospital staff. The flu can cause serious complications and even death, especially in the very young, the elderly and those with certain existing medical conditions.
The restrictions include:
Visitors are encouraged to wash their hands frequently while in the hospital and wear protective face masks when instructed. Exceptions to these restrictions may be made for cases involving critically ill patients and end-of-life situations.
With a highly contagious flu strain spreading, physicians at Floyd are urging patients to visit their primary care doctor or nearest Floyd Urgent Care rather than going to the emergency room (ER).
“If you think you have the flu, the best action to take is to visit your primary care doctor or an urgent care office as soon as possible," said Dr. Robert Holcombe Jr., Medical Director, Floyd Urgent Care.
Primary Care and Urgent Care physicians are equipped to diagnose and treat the flu, are quicker and less expensive than a trip to the ER, and by diagnosing the flu early, your doctor's office can prescribe antiviral medication that may help shorten the severity and length of your symptoms.
Common flu symptoms can be severe and appear suddenly:
The flu usually lasts seven to 10 days. Most people are contagious before they show any symptoms and until 24 hours after they last have a fever.
Five Tips to Prevent the Flu
Dr. Holcombe offers these tips to help prevent the flu:
Wash hands often. Use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available. This is especially important after using the restroom, before preparing food, after be-ing in public areas and before and after caring for a sick person.
Stay home from work or school with any flu-like symptoms. The CDC rec-ommends that you stay at home for at least 24 hours after a fever is gone, ex-cept to get medical care. This fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.
Cover coughs or sneezes. Cough into the bend of the elbow, and cover your nose when you sneeze. If you use tissues, throw them away immediately – and then wash your hands.
Don't touch your eyes, nose or mouth. Touching any of these areas moves germs from the hands into the body.
Get a flu vaccine. The flu virus will continue to circulate for weeks, so it's not too late to get the flu vaccine. The CDC recommends the flu vaccine for every-one over the age of 6 months. This vaccine can help prevent the flu or lessen its severity. Floyd Primary Care offices and Floyd Urgent Care offices have vac-cines available.
When to Go to the Emergency Room
The severity of the flu varies with each person, according to Dr. Holcombe. Those ex-periencing any of the following should go to the nearest hospital ER:
To find a Floyd Primary Care or Urgent Care office near you, go to
The Floyd Center for Bariatric Services has again been accredited as a Comprehensive Center for Bariatric Surgery. The designation through the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP) recognizes the center’s efforts to provide safe, high-quality care for bariatric surgery patients.
The center, operated by Floyd Medical Center and Harbin Clinic, also received the recognition through MBSAQIP in 2015. The three-year accreditation will be up again in 2021.
“The program stresses a team approach to all activities,” according to a summary of comments provided by MBSAQIP members who surveyed the center. “The constant theme was a sense of family. This is a big program in a small town.”
Some 2,425 bariatric surgeries have been performed at Floyd.
Dr. Ryland Scott’s efforts in providing quality care also drew recognition. Dr. Scott, a Harbin Clinic surgeon, is the medical director of the center. Dr. Peter Adams, another Harbin surgeon, joined the center in 2017.
“The base of the program is its great leadership. Dr. Scott has the experience to maintain high quality and the humility to recognize when improvements can be implemented,” the summary stated.
“I can’t wait to see the impact we can make on the health of our community as we move forward and continually improve in our pursuit of perfection,” Dr. Scott said after receiving news about the honor.
Floyd Medical Center President and CEO Kurt Stuenkel congratulated Dr. Scott and Dr. Adams. “The reviews from the onsite surveyor were stellar, and it is nice to get this officially,” Stuenkel said.
Amy Braden, RN, CBN, is the program manager for the Floyd Center for Bariatric Services. “I’m just proud to be part of a team that continually meets patient safety and quality standards,” Braden said.
MBSAQIP is a partnership between the American College of Surgeons and the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery.
Floyd Medical Center has been awarded gold status on the Honor Roll for Antibiotic Stewardship by the Georgia Department of Public Health for its efforts to safely and effectively administer antibiotics.
The Georgia Honor Roll for Antibiotic Stewardship was established in 2014 in an effort to improve antimicrobial stewardship at critical access and acute care facilities statewide. Floyd’s stewardship program was at that time placed on the honor roll for its practices, said Gary Latta, clinical coordinator of Pharmaceutical Services at Floyd.
The GDPH defines antibiotic stewardship as the practice of ensuring appropriate and judicious use of antibiotics to improve treatment of infectious disease while reducing the potential harms from misuse and overuse.
“Since antibiotics were first used, bacteria have been developing resistance and lately this has become an alarming threat to our society,” said Latta. “Some infections are generally becoming more and more difficult to treat. Overuse and misuse of antibiotics are primary reasons for this growing threat.”
Standards issued by The Joint Commission went into effect at the beginning of 2017, requiring hospitals to implement programs that align with current evidence-based practices. The Georgia Honor Roll for Antibiotic Stewardship was then upgraded to include bronze, silver and gold designations.
Hospitals must meet certain benchmarks in six categories, leadership commitment, accountability & drug expertise, action, tracking, reporting and education.
For renewal status this year, hospitals on the honor roll were grandfathered in as bronze status. Latta said Floyd recently applied for gold status and was awarded the upgrade based on our program’s accomplishments. Polk Medical Center is also on bronze status and plans to apply for gold status this year.
“At Floyd, we are committed to being good stewards of the use of antibiotics in treating our patients,” Latta said. “Being awarded gold status is an honor that reflects our team’s commitment in providing safe and effective antimicrobial therapy.”
Alisha Green, RN, MSN, NP-C, has joined The Breast Center at Floyd as a Nurse Practitioner. She will also practice in Floyd’s Primary Care Network.
Nurse practitioners prescribe medications and other treatments under the direction of a physician. They also obtain medical histories, perform physical examinations, order and perform diagnostic studies.
Green earned a Master of Science degree in nursing from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from the University of West Georgia in Carrollton.
She has more than 10 years experience in oncology and breast health services. Before coming to Floyd, she worked as a Nurse Practitioner at Redmond Regional Medical Center’s Women’s Center.
Green is a member of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, Sigma Theta Tau Nu Chapter National Nursing Honor Society and the Oncology Nursing Society.
To schedule an appointment call 706.509.6840, and choose option 1.
A partnership between Floyd Medical Center, Rome City Schools and Ferst Foundation for Childhood Literacy will help provide free books for babies born at the hospital in 2018.
The aim of the literacy program is to make sure a child receives a free book each month from birth through their fifth birthday. Rome City Schools will pay for "Read to Me," the first book all newborns at the hospital will receive in 2018.
Louis Byars, superintendent of Rome City Schools, said the effort is part of a plan to raise literacy rates.
"I knew we needed to start as early as possible to help all children succeed," Byars said. "Since approximately 2,300 children are born at Floyd Medical Center each year, I thought that would be the best place to begin." The books will cost the city school system $3 each.
Ginger Rowston, Family Engagement Coordinator for the school system, said one goal of the program is to encourage parents to read to their children.
"We are excited and honored to partner with Rome City Schools and the Ferst Foundation to foster a love of reading and help children in this community on their way to academic success," said Kellie Pearson, Director Of Women's & Children's Services at Floyd.
Through the Ferst Foundation, one free book will be mailed to each family every month. Parents can register their children to receive the books at the hospital after they are born.
During a specially called meeting of Floyd Healthcare Management Inc. (FHMI) on Thursday, April 12, 2018, the board voted to accept the invitation of the Cherokee County Health Care Authority (CCHCA) for a Floyd subsidiary to manage Cherokee Medical Center in the event that CCHCA purchases the hospital. The arrangement would be a lease management agreement at no purchase or lease price by Floyd other than $1.
Certain contingencies and regulatory requirements must be met before the lease will become final.
Cherokee Medical Center is a 60-bed hospital in Centre, Ala., serving residents and visitors of Cherokee County, Ala., with an array of services including diagnostic imaging, drug and alcohol treatment, emergency care, laboratory services, nutritional services, pharmacy, respiratory care, rehabilitation services, surgical services and subacute rehabilitation care.
Nurse practitioners prescribe medications and other treatments
under the direction of a physician. They also obtain medical histories,
perform physical examinations, order and perform diagnostic studies.
earned a Master of Science degree in nursing from the University of
Alabama at Birmingham and a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from
the University of West Georgia in Carrollton.
She has more than 10
years experience in oncology and breast health services. Before coming
to Floyd, she worked as a Nurse Practitioner at Redmond Regional Medical
Center’s Women’s Center.
Green is a member of the American
Association of Nurse Practitioners, Sigma Theta Tau Nu Chapter National
Nursing Honor Society and the Oncology Nursing Society.
To schedule an appointment call 706.509.6840, and choose option 1.
For the second consecutive year, The Breast Center at Floyd has been honored for meeting a benchmark in patient satisfaction.
The center has earned the 2017 Guardian of Excellence Award, given to health care providers that perform in the top 5 percent of all Press Ganey clients during the course of one year. Press Ganey works with more than 26,000 health care providers to help them improve and sustain patient satisfaction. The Breast Center at Floyd also won the award in 2016.
"To attain this level of achievement indicates their commitment to making the patient experience outstanding by providing a high level of service, technology and professional knowledge," said Sonny Rigas, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Floyd Medical Center.
In addition to its patient satisfaction excellence, The Breast Center at Floyd is a recognized leader in quality of care, earning Center of Excellence designations from the American College of Radiology and The Consortium of Breast Centers.
Centers of Excellence are fully accredited in mammography, stereotactic breast biopsy, breast ultrasound and ultrasound-guided breast biopsy. The center also offers Genius 3D Mammography, which offers layer-by-layer images of breast tissue, allowing for better detection of breast cancer in women with dense breast tissue.
For more information or to make an appointment, contact The Breast Center at Floyd at 706.509.6840.
Heyman HospiceCare at Floyd has been named a 2017 Hospice Honors Elite recipient. The award recognizes hospice programs that provide the highest level of quality as measured from the caregiver’s point of view. Heyman HospiceCare also received Hospice Honors recognition in 2015 and 2016.
Hospice Honors Elite recipients are chosen based on results of the Hospice Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) survey for the evaluation period of October 2015 through September 2016. Performance scores are compared on a question-by-question basis to a national performance score calculated from all hospices contained in the Deyta Analytics’ Hospice CAHPS database. Hospice Honors Elite recipients include those hospices scoring above the Deyta Analytics national performance score on all 24 of the evaluated questions.
Deyta Analytics is a division of HEALTHCAREfirst, a leading provider of Web-based home health and hospice software, outsourced billing and coding services, and advanced analytics.
Heyman HospiceCare has a history of providing people-centered care since its founding in 1990, said program director Casey Blankenship. The department consistently ranks in the highest ranges for patient satisfaction.
Floyd Medical Center has received the Get With The Guidelines®-Heart Failure Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award for implementing specific quality improvement measures outlined by the American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology Foundation's secondary prevention guidelines for patients with heart failure.
This marks the third time in two years that Floyd has been recognized with a quality achievement award.
Get With The Guidelines-Heart Failure is a quality improvement program that helps hospital teams follow the most up-to-date, research-based standards with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing hospital readmissions for heart failure patients. Launched in 2005, numerous published studies have demonstrated the program's success in achieving patient outcome improvements, including reductions in 30-day readmissions.
"This award is the culmination of a lot of hard work from our dedicated team of physicians, nurses, pharmacists, exercise specialists and other clinicians," said Marenda Russell, Heart Failure Program Coordinator. "Not only did we meet the minimum requirements needed to achieve this award, but the data was consistently above the requirement which shows that the processes we've implemented are working."
Floyd earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of heart failure patients. These measures include evaluation of the patient, proper use of medications and aggressive risk-reduction therapies, and other appropriate therapies. Before patients are discharged, they also receive education on managing their heart failure and overall health, get a follow-up visit scheduled, as well as other care transition interventions.
"We are pleased to recognize Floyd for their commitment to heart failure care," said Paul Heidenreich, M.D., M.S., national chairman of the Get With The Guidelines Steering Committee and Professor of Medicine at Stanford University. "Research has shown there are benefits to patients who are treated at hospitals that have adopted the Get With The Guidelines program. Get With the Guidelines research has demonstrated the impact of lowering 30-day readmissions and reducing mortality rates."
According to the American Heart Association, about 5.7 million adults in the United States suffer from heart failure, with the number expected to rise to eight million by 2030. Statistics show that each year about 870,000 new cases are diagnosed and about 50 percent of those diagnosed will die within five years. However, many heart failure patients can lead a full, enjoyable life when their condition is managed with proper medications or devices and with healthy lifestyle changes.
Floyd Medical Center has been named a Georgia Safe to Sleep Hospital by the Georgia Department of Public Health, highlighting the hospital's continued commitment to infant safety.
Georgia has one of the highest infant mortality rates in the country. Every week, three infants in Georgia die due to sleep-related causes, many of which are preventable.
"By utilizing safe sleep practices, we have an incredible opportunity to help new parents learn how to protect and care for their baby when they return home," explained Director of the Family Birth Center Kellie Pearson. "It's been shown that observing hospital staff utilizing these safe techniques reinforces the same behavior in the parents."
In 2016, Floyd signed a pledge of intent to participate in the Georgia Department of Public Health's Safe to Sleep initiative.
"What's most troubling about statewide statistics related to infant mortality is that so many of these tragedies could have been prevented with proper education," Pearson added. "At Floyd, we are committed to becoming a leader in the effort to protect infants and reduce the number of preventable deaths."
The Safe to Sleep designation indicates that Floyd staff have educated co-workers and parents, implemented a safe infant sleep policy, modeled safe sleep while babies are in the hospital and distributed educational support materials. It also signifies Floyd has completed a crib audit to measure compliance with safe sleep recommendations:
Floyd Medical Center's Emergency Medical Services was named Region 1 Service of the Year by Northwest Georgia Emergency Medical Services. The award was presented at the organization's annual awards banquet.
"Our team of EMS professionals serve and care for others in such extraordinary ways," said Bud Owens, Executive Director of Floyd Emergency Medical Services. "I see them impacting our patients in such a positive manner, as they continually go above and beyond to serve others."
Along with being named Service of the Year, two Floyd EMS professionals received individual awards. Paramedic Tony Cooper received the Dr. James Creel, Jr. Pioneer of the Year Award, while Paramedic Don Taylor was honored with the Dr. Paul Nassour Lifetime Achievement Award.
"These awards are proof positive that Tony and Don have earned the respect of their peers through excellent service and dedication to their patients, to their co-workers and to Floyd," Owens said. "I can't think of two more deserving individuals."
Northwest Georgia Emergency Medical Services is a collaboration between the Northwest Georgia EMS Advisory Council and the Georgia Office of EMS and Trauma, Region 1, and represents 16 counties across northwest Georgia.
Floyd Medical Center has been identified as a Chest Pain Center with Primary PCI (Percutaneous Coronary Intervention) by the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPC). This accreditation indicates that Floyd has integrated evidence-based care, quality initiatives, clinical best-practices and the latest clinical guidelines into care provided for cardiovascular patients.
"The national goal is to provide rapid assessment and intervention for heart attack patients entering emergency departments within 90 minutes of their arrival, 85% of the time, also known as Door to Balloon time," said Keri Bush, Floyd Chest Pain Center Coordinator. "Floyd has consistently exceeded this goal and boasts an average Door to Balloon of 67 minutes for 2015."
Floyd's Chest Pain team includes employees from a wide cross section of departments, all working together to continually improve performance times.
“This recognition is the culmination of a tremendous amount of work and preparation put together by many in our organization," said Kurt Stuenkel, Floyd President and Chief Executive Officer. “It's an example of the great teamwork that we see exhibited every day at Floyd."
Departments involved in the ongoing effort include:
"Receiving this accreditation demonstrates our commitment to providing the highest quality patient care for cardiac patients," explained Bush. "In addition, our goal is to provide Early Heart Attack Care (EHAC) education to the community and stress the importance of seeking medical attention early. Early detection is paramount in surviving a heart attack."
Bush said the Chest Pain team displayed remarkable teamwork and worked very hard over the past year to achieve this recognition.
Floyd Medical Center has been named a recipient of the Healthgrades 2017 Patient Safety Excellence Award™ for a fourth consecutive year (2014-2017). The award recognizes superior performance in hospitals that have prevented the occurrence of serious, potentially avoidable complications for patients during hospital stays. The distinction places Floyd among the top 10% of all short-term acute care hospitals reporting patient safety data for its excellent performance as evaluated by Healthgrades, the leading online resource for comprehensive information about physicians and hospitals.
"Our focus on safety begins with our daily safety huddle and continues as the thread that runs through every patient interaction we have, so we are thrilled to again receive this national recognition," said Kurt Stuenkel, Floyd President and Chief Executive Officer.
Joseph Biuso, M.D., Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, noted that patient safety is an ongoing effort at Floyd.
"This honor confirms that our systematic emphasis on patient safety has produced sustainable results," he said. "Our ongoing conversation is about how to implement error-free processes, and the results speak for themselves."
While vitally important, Dr. Biuso stressed that planning, alone, does not bring about the sustained success Floyd has achieved in the areas of quality and safety.
"This achievement is not only about a process that has been implemented," he said. "It is about a dedicated team that delivers compassionate, patient-centered care every day. Quality care isn't possible without a quality team, and that's what we have at Floyd."
During the 2013-2015 study period, Healthgrades found that patients treated in hospitals receiving the Patient Safety Excellence Award were, on average:
On average, 134,568 patient safety events could have been avoided if all hospitals, as a group from 2013 to 2015, performed similarly to hospitals performing better than expected on each of 13 patient safety indicators evaluated by Healthgrades.
Hospitals who have been recognized as Healthgrades 2017 Patient Safety Excellence Award recipients have minimized patient safety events and also surpassed expectations in preventing safety incidents," said Brad Bowman, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Healthgrades. "We applaud these hospitals for their performance and for their organizational commitment to delivering high-quality care."
During the study period (2013-2015), Healthgrades 2017 Patient Safety Excellence Award recipient hospitals demonstrated excellent performance in safety provided for patients in the Medicare population, as measured by objective outcomes (risk-adjusted patient safety indicator rates) for 13 patient safety indicators defined by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).
 Statistics are based on Healthgrades Patient Safety Ratings and Excellence Award methodology which includes application of AHRQ QI software to MedPAR data for years 2013 through 2015 and represent three-year estimates for Medicare patients only.