From the Offices of Stuart Markowitz, MD and Stacy Nerenstone, MD


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In This Issue... June 22, 2014 Edition

Wash In - Wash Out









We continue to improve our hand-hygiene compliance, advancing from a 75 percent total overall compliance rate in July 2013 to 88 percent as of mid-May. However, we still have work to do in our hospital and system.

In mid-May, although Hartford Hospital nurses were top in the system with a compliance rate of 84 percent, that rate was down from 89 percent in April.

Our physician assistants were first in the system with a compliance rate of 91 percent in mid-May, compared to 86 percent in April.

Our physicians were fourth in the system with an 82 percent compliance rate, compared to 84 percent in April.

We will continue peer checking and reminders and increase the number of accountability agents on the floors.



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"This year, Hartford Hospital celebrates 160 years of medical firsts and continues to deliver excellent, compassionate care to the communities we serve."

- Dr. Stu Markowitz, President


HH Facts and Firsts:

2005 - Hartford Hospital was the first hospital in Connecticut to offer percutaneous cryoablation for cancerous tumors.


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Chief's Corner

GreeneWelcome To "Chief's Corner"

We recognize the need for sharing information about activities throughout the hospital more widely with our Medical Staff.

Chief's Corner will bring you highlights of activities of interest, which will be authored by our Department Chiefs. Should you have any comments or suggestions along the way, please share them with us.

- Dr. Jack Greene, Hartford HealthCare regional vice president of Medical Affairs for the Hartford Region and Hartford Hospital


Please Take the Medical Staff Development Survey By Friday

Hartford Hospital is working to develop a Medical Staff Development Plan, and is conducting a survey of the entire Hartford Region medical staff to gain insight into our physician needs.

Here is a link to the survey. Please respond by Friday, June 27.

Your input is essential to developing an appropriate plan that will include the number and type of physicians required to serve Hartford Hospital’s patients given the dynamics of our local markets, our market penetration, the existing supply of physicians in these markets, and the needs of the communities we serve.

This survey is part of an overall Hartford HealthCare initiative to accurately assess physician resources in our service area and ensure that HHC is able to recruit and retain the appropriate providers to meet your needs and the needs of our patients.

Any feedback or information you provide to Oliver Wyman will be kept strictly confidential and Oliver Wyman will only report findings in aggregate -- no responses will be directly attributed to the individual that made them.

Thank you in advance for your time and insight, and please do not hesitate to contact Dan Dimenstein ( with any questions about this process.


Medical Staff Quality Initiative Focuses on Patient Safety Indicators and Mortality

Improving the care of patients is a priority for all providers at Hartford Hospital. As part of our efforts to improve care, the Medical Staff Quality Council, the Quality Department and Health Information Management are working in close collaboration in reviewing patient medical records.

The team is working to ensure that documentation appropriately reflects care provided. In addition, they are validating that there is complete and compliant documentation in the medical record.

Ultimately, this quality initiative will provide the following:

  1. Proper identification of patient outcomes
  2. Accurate and compliant coding of clinically supported diagnoses
  3. Reflection of the appropriate severity of illness of the patient
  4. Appropriate reporting (internally and externally) of Patient Safety Indicators (PSI’s) and other key quality indicators

The team is currently focusing on two areas: Patient Safety Indicators and Mortality.

The Patient Safety Indicators (PSIs), set forth by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) are a set of indicators providing information on potential in hospital complications and adverse events following surgeries, procedures, and childbirth. The PSIs were developed by AHRQ after a comprehensive literature review, analysis of ICD-9-CM codes, review by a clinician panel, implementation of risk adjustment, and empirical analyses.

The Patient Safety Indicators include the following (but are not limited to):

  • Pressure Ulcers
  • Death in Surgical Patients with Treatable Complications
  • Iatrogenic pneumothorax
  • Central Line Associated Bloodstream Infections
  • Post op Hemorrhage or Hematoma
  • Post op Respiratory Failure
  • Post op PE or DVT
  • Post op Sepsis
  • Accidental Puncture or Laceration

Through a coordinated effort, the team is currently reviewing 100% of cases real time that are coded with Patient Safety Indicators. Medical staff (attending of record or primary procedure surgeon) is queried to confirm the clinical documentation related to the identified indicator. This process is used as an opportunity to learn proper documentation as well as flag cases for review through the Morbidity and Mortality Process.

Mortality rates at Hartford Hospital have been identified as an area of focus. Through a focused patient Mortality review, Dr. Jessica Czajka reviewed 50 patient mortality records. She concluded the following opportunities to reduce mortality rates:

  1. End of life and goals of care discussion with patient and family on admission
  2. Early involvement of palliative care and hospice
  3. Review of coding summaries to ensure appropriate severity of illness

In terms of next steps, there will be implementation of 100% mortality review by Medical Staff within each department. Cases will be identified by the Quality management team and provided to each department liaison on a daily basis. The case reviews will focus on the above noted areas. Case reviews will be summarized. Additional educational opportunities will be identified.


High Reliability Training Sessions for Physicians

Sessions for physician training in high reliability training are being scheduled. All doctors who go into the hospital should plan on taking the 90-minute course.

Pick a time today! Email to register.

Sessions will be held in JB-118:

  • Tuesday, July 8 - 6:45-8:15 a.m.
  • Wednesday, July 9 - 5:30-7 p.m.
  • Wednesday, August 13 - 6:45-8:15 a.m.
  • Thursday, August 14 - 5:30-7 p.m.
Top News

HHC Receives Approval to Proceed with Ambulatory Surgery Center for Bone and Joint

Hartford HealthCare has received approval from the state Office of Health Care Access to proceed with our ambulatory surgery center for our Bone and Joint Institute.

The center will have five operating rooms and will be part of the overall 140,000-square-foot institute facility, which will include 60 private inpatient beds, 10 operating rooms and 30 perioperative beds.

The institute will work with our Center for Education, Simulation and Innovation to develop innovative treatments. We expect our institute to become a national destination as an innovator for bone and joint care.


IOL's Schizophrenia Rehab Program Will Continue

Collaboration between Hartford HealthCare and the State of Connecticut will enable The Institute of Living’s Schizophrenia Rehabilitation Program to continue for the coming year.

Recognizing the importance of the Schizophrenia Rehabilitation Program, the state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) has agreed to provide partial support for the program’s deficit. Additionally, Hartford Hospital’s Fund Development team will work diligently to fill the gap through philanthropic support.

To create efficiencies, some elements of the schizophrenia program will need to be modestly redesigned, but these will not diminish the quality of care that our patients and their families have come to expect.

“It is important to stress that while we are all pleased at this development, this is a short-term solution for this year only,” wrote Dr. Harold Schwartz, psychiatrist-in-chief at the Institute of Living, in a letter to program advocates. “Programs for the chronically mentally ill are largely paid for by Medicaid and Medicare. Yet federal reimbursement comes nowhere near covering the cost of the care provided.  For example, rehabilitation services such as cognitive remediation – a cornerstone of the Schizophrenia Rehabilitation Program – are not reimbursed at all in the State of Connecticut.”

Schwartz said the ongoing national dialogue on mental health creates an ideal atmosphere to make the case for improved funding. “We are counting on you and your advocacy,” he wrote. “Together, we can create lasting change that helps mental health receive the funding it deserves.”


HHC Develops New Post-Acute Care Division

Hartford HealthCare is reorganizing post-acute services in a new, system-level Post-Acute Care Division. This unit will oversee the Hartford HealthCare Rehabilitation Network and VNA HealthCare.

The move is in recognition of the importance of coordinating the care of patients after their hospital stays.

"Great hospital care is basic to what we do, but we are not a 'hospital system.' We are a health care delivery system," said Jeffrey Flaks, EVP and COO of Hartford HealthCare. "The patients and families we serve increasingly are choosing to have their care close to home (or at home) whenever possible."

Rita Parisi, president of our rehabilitation network and a system vice president, will lead the Post-Acute Care Division.

As part of this change, we are extensively restructuring the leadership duties related to home care and rehabilitation. As a result, we are eliminating the position of CEO and president of VNA HealthCare, currently held by Ellen Rothberg, who is leaving Hartford HealthCare.

Eric Smullen, currently vice president of outpatient rehabilitation services HHC Rehabilitation Network, will fill the new post of executive director for rehabilitation. Michael Soccio, vice-president for business development of VNA HealthCare, will be interim executive director for home care.


Drs. Finkelstein and Kirton Named Co-Chairs of 2015 Black & Red

Dr. Jeffrey Finkelstein, chief of Emergency Medicine, and Dr. Orlando Kirton, chief of the Department of Surgery and interim director of Trauma Service, have been named co-chairs of the 2015 Black & Red, which will benefit the Trauma Center at Hartford Hospital.

The Black & Red, to be held January 24, 2015, at The Bushnell, will feature The Blues Brothers Starring Dan Aykroyd and Jim Belushi.

Proceeds from the 2015 Black & Red will enhance resources for preventive services and outreach programs at Hartford Hospital, and help us to continue to provide the best evidence-based, state-of-the-art care for individuals experiencing traumatic injuries and medical emergencies.


Physician Engagement Task Force: Survey Results Show Majority Do Feel Connected

The Physician Engagement Task Force is a group of physicians lead by Dr. Stacy Nerenstone and sponsored by the Medical Staff Officers. The group formed because there is a continuing perception among Hartford Hospital physicians that there is not an effective collaborative partnership between physicians and HHC. The goal is to create the environment and processes to support collaborative decision making at the system and local hospital level in areas that affect physicians and patient care.

A recent Redcap Survey was sent out with 4 questions:

  1. Do you feel connected to Hartford Hospital?
  2. If there is an opportunity to get more involved, will you?
  3. If you answered “No” to question #2, what are the perceived barriers?
  4. Any thoughts?

Of the 1574 surveys sent via email, 227 were returned (14.5% return rate). Of those, 97 or 64% of the respondents said they DO feel connected to Hartford Hospital, and 50% of the respondents wanted to get more involved.

Written comments tended to center around problems with:

  • Lack of time
  • Scarcity of resources
  • Feelings of alienation on the part of the physicians as related to the hospital and HHC
  • Lack of communication

The group continues to meet monthly and will be focusing on specific projects that may advance our goals.

If you would like to get involved, please contact any of these members of the Physician Engagement Task Force:

Dr. Helaine Bertsch

Dr. Alex Cech

Dr. John D'Avella

Dr. Heather Einstein

Dr. Jeff Finkelstein

Dr. April Goller

Dr. Syed Hadi

Dr. Herbert Keating III

Dr. Orlando Kirton

Dr. Ajay Kumar

Dr. Leah Meisterling

Dr. Stacy Nerenstone

Dr. Jeffry Nestler

Dr. Stephen Ohki

Dr. Jarrod Post

Dr. Rosemary Quinlan

Dr. Kenneth Robinson

Dr. Matthew Saidel

Dr. William Sardella

Dr. Mark Shekhman

Dr. Robert Spillane

Dr. Barry Stein

Dr. Jonathan Tress

Dr. Peru Venkatesh

Dr. Cunegundo Vergara

Dr. Andrew Wakefield

Dr. Steven Zweibel



Advancing Medicine Looks at Men’s Health

Men’s Health at Hartford Hospital is the subject of the next episode of Advancing Medicine, scheduled to air Thursday, June 26, at 7:30 p.m. on WFSB-Channel 3.

Hartford Hospital’s expert care in bariatric surgery, cardiology, urology, and black men’s health will be showcased. After the show, stay tuned to chat online or by phone with the physicians and experts bringing first-class care to men in Connecticut.

To program your DVR online or via a mobile device, go to


Finances for May: Above Budget

Inpatient volumes based on discharges for the month of May were 1.2% above budget. The comparison to the prior year shows May 2014 discharges approximately 2.9% above the prior year. Outpatient revenues exceeded budget by 1.1% for the month. The favorable outpatient revenue variances were in Radiology, Laboratory and Cardiology services.

Through the first eight months of fiscal year 2014, inpatient discharges were above budget by 0.7% and were 2.0% greater than the prior fiscal year. Outpatient revenues were 4.3% above budget for the eight months ending May, 2014. Year to date, the favorable outpatient revenue variances continue to be in Radiology, Cardiology, Perioperative, Emergency and Laboratory services.


Stop the Stigma of Mental Illness

We are asking all HHC medical staff to take a pledge and sign their name to the following:

  • I pledge: To teach by sharing my own experiences with mental illness and encouraging others to share their stories with me; I will learn in order to change.
  • I pledge: To show compassion by reaching out to those in need of help; I will not let anyone suffer in silence.
  • I pledge: To have the courage to speak up and challenge stereotypes and attitudes; I will not tolerate or perpetuate stigma.
  • I pledge: To demand a change in how we view and address mental illness; I will help lead the way.

The goal is to obtain 10,000 individual pledges, spreading the message that changing attitudes can begin to change minds. So far, more than 8,600 have taken the pledge.

Ask everyone — fellow employees, volunteers, patients, the community — to “take a pledge.” It is online now at


Dr. Dhamodaran Palaniappan Honored by UConn Anesthesiology Residents

Dr. Dhamodaran Palaniappan has been named Teacher of the Year by the UConn School of Medicine anesthesiology residents. He received the award last year as well.


Dr. Rocco Orlando Presents on Quality Improvement at National Premier Conference

Dr. Rocco Orlando, HHC senior vice president and chief medical officer, and Pepper Sobieski, HHC director of Quality Improvement, presented “Clinical Councils: Driving improvement throughout a healthcare system”  at the Premier Breakthroughs Conference (one of the country’s two leading health care quality and performance improvement conferences) last week in San Antonio, TX.

Sobieski also presented “Leveraging Quality Data in a Health Care System” at the conference.


Dr. Andrew Salner Presents on Community Cancer Research at ACS New England Directors Roundtable

Dr. Andrew Salner, director of Hartford Hospital’s Gray Cancer Center, presented at the American Cancer Society’s New England Cancer Center Directors Roundtable on community cancer research at the annual meeting on June 16 at the Museum of Science in Boston, and lead a discussion amongst attendees concerning barriers and facilitators to research.


Drs. LaSala, Rai, Cronin and Kluger

Dr. Tony LaSala, of CMG Cardiology, Dr. Mirdula Rai, one of Hartford Hospital’s cardiology fellows, and Drs. Ed Cronin and Jeff Kluger from Electrophysiology published a letter in the June 2014 edition of the Journal of the American Society of Echocardiography entitled "Hypothermia and Left Ventricular Dysfunction: The Role of Electric Changes."

Systemic hypothermia is often used to prevent brain dysfunction after cardiac arrest and coma and can produce myocardial depression.

Dr. LaSala and colleagues were responding to an article suggesting that cardiac myocardial dysfunction during hypothermia was a direct effect of the low body temperature. They proposed that since hypothermia produces QT longation and since congenital long QT syndrome can produce myocardial dysfunction to that during hypothermia that the myocardial depression may be due to the QT effects, and not to the cold effects, of hypothermia.



Our Physicians Are Great Sources For Local Media

Dr. J. Craig Allen was interviewed on Channel 8 on June16 about hoarding.

Dr. Edward Clerkin was interviewed on WTIC AM on June 14 about the new HHC Family Health Center in Farmington.

Dr. Kelly Johnson-Arbor was interviewed on NBC CT and WTNH on June 12 about the dangers of "weed brownies."

Dr. Charles McKay was interviewed on WTIC AM on June 13 about the dangers seafood poses to pregnant women.

Dr. Pavlos Papasavas was interviewed on Fox CT on June 11 about weight loss surgery.

Dr. Robert Piorkowski was interviewed on WFSB on June 12 and NBC CT on June 17 about melanoma.

Dr. Laura Saunders was interviewed on WNPR on June 9 about autism. Hear it here.

Dr. David Tolin was interviewed on NBC CT, the New Haven Register and WFSB on June16 about hoarding.

Dr. Christina Wai was interviewed on WTIC AM on June 20 about summer skin safety.

Dr. Blaise Worden was interviewed on Fox CT on June16 about hoarding.


You can always view a list of media interviews on the website under Hartford Hospital Making Headlines.

Academics and Research

Electrophysiology To Run Protocol To Study Algorithm in ICDs to Prevent Progression of AFib

The Division of Electrophysiology received approval from Medtronic to run an investigator initiated protocol to study the ability of an algorithm in their implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) to prevent progression of atrial fibrillation.

A recent trial demonstrated that this same algorithm prevented the progression of atrial fibrillation in patients implanted with a Medtronic pacemaker.

“This algorithm holds the possibility of reducing the burden of atrial fibrillation in our ICD patient population and to possibly decrease hospitalizations because of AFIB," said Dr. Steven Zweibel, the director of Electrophysiology." This research dovetails with the development of the Hartford Hospital Atrial Fibrillation Center and demonstrates our commitment to improve the lives of our patients with atrial fibrillation.”

Enrollment will be initiated in the fall with follow-up lasting for approximately one year.


The Mind-Body Connection: Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care

Save the Date! ICP Conference Sept. 18

Integrated Care Partners is offering its first annual conference on The Mind-Body Connection: Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care on Thursday, Sept. 18 from 11:15 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Maneeley's in South Windsor.

Keynote speaker will be Dr. Henry Chung, VP and CMO of Montefiore Care Management Organization. Welcome remarks will come from CT LT. Gov. Nancy Wyman.

The intended audience is primary care physicians, behavioral health specialists, social workers, practice managers, community care coordinators, community mental health providers and anyone interested in this integrated care model.

For more information go to


Schwartz Center Rounds: Advanced Self Preservation for Healthcare Providers

Schwartz Center Rounds will be held on Wednesday, June 25 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. in Gilman Auditorium. Lunch is provided free.

The topic this month is Advanced Self Preservation for Healthcare Providers. Special guest speakers are Doris Armstrong, RN, retired vice president of nursing, and Dr. H. David Crombie, retired director of surgery.

Please join us. No need to RSVP. If you have questions, please call Kathy Burns at 860-545-5712.


9th Annual Interdisciplinary Transplant Symposium

SAVE THE DATE: Thursday, Nov. 6

The 9th Annual Interdisciplinary Transplant Symposium will be held on Thursday, Nov. 6 at the Sheraton Hartford South Hotel in Rocky Hill. Details to follow.

Voices of Our Patients

Voices of Our Patients: Kudos to Drs. Benthien and Lawlor

Dear Dr. Markowitz,

You are what you say you are!! Your mission statement, your vision and your four values are truly in place and operational!

How do I know that? Because we experienced it firsthand, 2/5/14 thru 2/8/14 when my husband had surgery with Dr. Ross Benthien and then recovered for four days in the Conklin Building with the most compassionate, skilled, respectful staff we have ever encountered in a hospital environment.

My husband first had a triple arthrodesis fusion at a nearby hospital on 9/30/13 during which he caught an infection that wasn’t properly diagnosed and treated that led to a huge bone infection with a release of hardware floating to the top of his foot.

We were referred to Dr. Benthien by a family member and thankfully he was the epitome of excellence your “values” aspire to be. He really is the “BEST.” Dr. Benthien brings experience, best practices and the highest quality of care to his patients. We felt safe after our first meeting with him on the 28th of January. He knew what we had just been through at the other hospital and that we were placing my husband’s life and the preservation of his foot into his hands and the staff at your hospital. He strongly but gently took over and made us feel safe and secure and no longer afraid that someone might mess up again. What a gift to be able to give to a patient.

In addition, Dr. Michael Lawlor became my husband’s Infectious Disease Specialist and is so incredibly knowledgeable and respected in his field that we knew we were being treated by the best team in the Hartford area. As we continued to fight a terrible infection, we had a great team on our side and that was so very important.

Your nursing staff and everyone we encountered during my husband’s four day stay were kind, caring and so compassionate that it still overwhelms us with emotion when we think about it. We only wish we had started out at Hartford Hospital as we know we would never have ended up in the situation that led us to your wonderful hospital to begin with.

Thank you so much for being what you say you are. Don’t stop! It is so important to deliver on what you promise. The people expect it and they shouldn’t be disappointed. You are doing a wonderful job so just keep doing it! Please share this letter with those I’ve mentioned. They are amazing!


Robert & Ellen Foley

Operational Update

Beds to be Moved to Create Dedicated Medical Teaching Team on B5E

Hartford Hospital will be making some important changes in beds to create a dedicated medical teaching team on B5E. Here is the timeline:

·         June 24: From B5, 26 patients will move to the new CB3 unit and 16 patients will remain on B5

·         June 25-26: B5 will begin to drop their number of monitored patients if possible

·         June 26: B7E will drop census if possible

·         June 26: CB3 will have monitor capability starting in the late morning and can take monitored B7E  patients if needed and if possible

·         June 27: B7E will move all patients to B5 (B7E will remain closed for cleaning and minor renovations for 2 weeks.)

An exact date  of reopening of B7E will be communicated as the time approaches- but we anticipate the week of July 14.

In mid August, N12 will move to B5 permanently..


Access Initiative By The Numbers

Hartford Healthcare Medical Group (HHC MG) has launched an application on its website that can book doctors’ appointments within 24 hours. The scheduling service is provided by ZocDoc, a company backed by Since its launch with HHC MG in late March, more than 200 appointments have been booked.

May numbers for our access initiative to help grow the HHC Medical Group and the system have shown extremely positive signs.

o ZocDoc – confirmed and upcoming appointments booked in May: 124 (up from 60 in April)

o Call Center – Year to date new appointments booked: 156 primary care and 39 specialty care appointments.


Save the Date for the 2015 Black & Red, featuring the Blues Brothers Starring Dan Aykroyd and Jim Belushi

Join us for a night with the Blues Brothers Starring Dan Aykroyd & Jim Belushi and a celebration of the dedication and extraordinary work of the Hartford Hospital Trauma Center at the 24th annual Black & Red gala on Saturday, January 24, 2015, at The Bushnell in Hartford.

The beneficiary of the 2015 gala, the Hartford Hospital Trauma Center, is the only Level 1 Trauma Center in the region, as classified by the American College of Surgeons. Evaluating more than 14,000 injuries a year, ranging from minor to life-threatening, the Emergency Department and LIFE STAR are the gateway for many patients to Hartford Hospital's innovative and complex trauma care.

The gala provides us with an exciting opportunity to recognize one of the busiest trauma centers in New England. With the Blues Brothers Starring Dan Aykroyd and Jim Belushi as the night's entertainment, the 2015 gala promises to be a don't-miss event.

Stay tuned for ticket and sponsorship information. For up-to-the-minute details, visit


Dr. Mary Colpoys Named Site Director for Hebrew Health Care Hospitalists

Dr. Mary Colpoys joined the Department of Medicine team as the site director for the Hospitalist Program at Hebrew Health Care.

Dr. Colpoys will be leading a group of five hospitalists at Hebrew Health Care, our latest HHC partner.


CT Health Council Event: "The Patient is the Future"

Connecticut Health Council’s “The Patient is the Future” event will be held on Wednesday, June 25 from 7:30-9:30 a.m. at The Norwalk Inn & Conference Center, 99 East Avenue in Norwalk.

The main points of the program include:

  • Focusing on the patient, the quality of care and trust among those in the health care field.
  • Questioning protocol where appropriate, empowering patients and, ultimately, improving outcomes.
  • Supporting patients to become more engaged in their health care resulting in more effective outcomes.

The keynote speaker has an especially compelling story. When Randi Redmond Oster’s son was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease, it sent her on a mission to focus on patient care, outcomes and empowerment.

Following her remarks, a panel of experts will discuss the issue of patient care.

Tickets are $25 for Founding Partners and $50 for non-members. Hartford HealthCare is a founding partner of the Connecticut Health Council. To learn more and to register, visit:


Last Week for No-Fee Consolidation Move of HH 403(b) TSA to Prudential

Until June 30, you may transfer your Hartford Hospital 403(b)/TSA balance to Prudential and pay no fees for the transfer.

Hartford HealthCare's retirement savings plans are now managed by Prudential. As of Jan. 1, 2014, your retirement savings deductions go into your new Prudential account. But the balance of the Hartford Hospital 403(b)/TSA was not automatically moved.

Account consolidation is entirely your choice and you can do it at any time. Until June 30, Prudential will reimburse you for any fees associated with the account transfer charged by your previous fund manager. After June 30, you will be responsible for fees associated with the switch.

To ensure that employees who wish to can take advantage of the fee waiver, representatives from Prudential may call or e-mail you to offer personalized assistance. This is a service offered by HHC for your convenience and you are under no obligation. Keep in mind that if Prudential attempts to contact you, both caller ID and email address will identify the correspondence as coming from Prudential or Before any personal account information is discussed you may be asked to confirm name, address and last four digits of your social security number.

It is recommended you start the consolidation process no later than June 15. If you have an outstanding loan at the prior provider, it may not be possible to transfer your entire balance to Prudential.

For more information call Prudential at 1-800-249-2430.


State Mandated CME Renewal Available Free To HH Doctors on Jubilant Learning Portal

State mandated CME for physician license renewal is available free on the Hartford Hospital Jubilant Learning Platform. You will need your Novell sign on information to access the portal. If you have forgotten your sign on, please call the HELP desk 55699 (outside: 860-545-5699).

To access Jubilant from the web, go to the Hartford Hospital page and click on the gold tab “Medical Professionals.” Click on “Learning Portal” from the drop down menu, and then click on the green tab “Learning Portal Login.” Follow this link for instant access

From the home page of the intranet (inside HH), click on the Learning Portal for Medical Education and Training link. Once you’ve clicked on the link, use your Novell sign in, and the CME is under Physician License renewal CME.

Once you have passed the post-test, you will be awarded a printable CME certificate. Your CME will also be maintained and easily self-service accessed on the Learning Portal site, should you need a copy in the future.

Please note that your Risk Management required activities through MRM will provide your Risk Management CME.


Remind a Colleague: Wash In, Wash Out

All health care workers and patients should feel comfortable reminding any other health care worker to sanitize regardless of their role. This should always be done in a courteous and constructive manner. All health care workers should respond courteously and gratefully when reminded.

If you remind another health care worker to sanitize, and he or she responds with irritation or hostility, please notify their department chief, Dr. Jamie Roche or Dr. Jack Ross, who will communicate with them to prevent recurrences.

Do You Have An Idea for a Good Media Story?

Media Relations Manager Seeks Good Story Ideas for the Media

By Tina Varona, Hartford Hospital Media Relations Manager

Each month, Hartford Hospital generates news coverage worth roughly $1 million in advertising.  I would like to continue to capitalize on this trend with robust, innovative, human-interest and leading-edge technological stories that will keep Hartford Hospital in the spotlight, and further promote our presence as an established market leader.

With your help and ideas, we can continue to achieve this goal and advance the Hartford Hospital brand by showcasing the exceptional care provided here every day.

Some helpful tips: What makes a great health news story?

  • Timeliness - Stories with "news value." This includes breaking news on medical innovations, research results or events of the day that capture the public's interest.
  • Personality - Stories that feature compelling patients and clinic employees with unique or inspiring stories to share.
  • Uniqueness - Stories that may be a bit less timely, but explain a treatment unique to Hartford Hospital.
  • Universal Interest - Stories that feature conditions or diseases which affect large numbers of individuals and families all across the country. Always ask, 'why would a person in Fargo, North Dakota care?'
  • The "Wow" Factor - Stories that are compelling and will make the audience want to repeat the story to family and friends.
  • Visual Appeal - Stories with interesting, easy-to-interpret graphics or visuals to explain a complicated process.
  • Celebrity - Stories that feature care provided to VIPs.

We always need the following elements to pitch a story:

  • Patient/ main character who has already signed a consent form
  • Video of the surgery or procedure
  • Video of the patient before and after
  • Short interview with the physician that helps explain in layman terms what the procedure is, why it's new or different and how it helps the patient.


Please feel free to contact me at, or call me directly at 860.972.4475 or by cell 860.310.7640 with story ideas that we can publicize.

Thank you, and I look forward to working with you.

ICP News

ICP News! Palliative Care and Patient Satisfaction

Please find attached the June issue of ICP News.

This issue's feature story is "Palliative Medicine Rising to Awareness in Improving the Quality of Care."

Read what ICP is doing and what it means for you.

HH In the News

Erik Compton Continues Giving Back

ESPN, June 18

In southern New England this week for the Travelers Championship and talking about the #DonateLife campaign,Erik Compton, the 34-year-old who finished tied for second at the U.S. Open went to Hartford Hospital to meet with patients on the transplant floor, something he does often when on the road playing golf.

His well-chronicled tale forces him to wear two hats every day. The first is as a professional golfer, the realization of a childhood dream. The second, as a two-time heart transplant recipient, was something many would consider a nightmare thrust upon him, first as a 12-year-old, and again in 2008, when his second operation gave him his third heart.

If his daily dose of medications isn't reminder enough, Compton actively chooses to relive those terrible times for a higher purpose. By seeking others who are experiencing the same trauma he and his family have, he aims to give others hope with the goal of bringing awareness to the cause that saved his life.

Read more here.


Schizophrenia Rehab Program Saved

Hartford Courant, June 19

Hartford HealthCare has reconsidered its decision to close its Schizophrenia Rehabilitation Program and will maintain it as an independent service at the Institute of Living, after an outpouring of concern from mental-health advocates and after securing $75,000 a year in funding from the state.

The health care network had planned to close the renowned program that helps schizophrenia patients with concentration, attention, organization, and other fundamental life skills, and transfer the core services to other programs at the Institute. It was part of a cost-cutting measure that included eliminating 350 positions across the statewide network of 18,000 employees.

News of the program's closing touched a nerve in the advocacy community. What followed was a respectful, but urgent barrage of letters to the editor, phone calls, and emails to Hartford HealthCare leaders, and a petition with nearly 600 signatures.

Read more here.


In the HHC System

Backus Receives Award for Excellence

The CT Day, June 12

The William W. Backus Hospital will receive the 2014 John D. Thompson Award for Excellence in the Delivery of Healthcare Through the Use of Data for its project, “Clinical Care Redesign: Bringing Nurses Back to the Bedside,” the Connecticut Hospital Association announced today.

At Backus, a staff-led team redesigned inpatient care delivery to enable each care team member to spend as much time as possible at the patient’s bedside the hospital association said in a news release.

Each aspect of care delivery was analyzed for efficiency and effectiveness as seen through the eyes of patients. The project, which included more than 100 process innovations, included the analysis of all aspects of process, practice, delivery and workload. The team developed new ways to deliver care that enhanced staff skills and roles to involve more complex, meaningful and hands-on work.

When the project was complete, all key performance indicators improved. Staff reported having more time for their patients and higher compliance for hourly rounding. Results included improved patient experience, lowered readmission rates, a reduction in the cost of labor, improved staff engagement, smoother patient transitions, increased compliance with discharge appointments and decreased patient calls, the association said.


Hospital Cuts Affect Satellite Diagnostic Centers in Southington

My Record Journal, June 18

Employee reductions by the Hartford HealthCare network will include one position at MidState Medical Center in Meriden and an unknown number at the Southington Diagnostic Center, according to the union representing hospital workers.

Hartford HealthCare announced the reduction of the equivalent of 75 full-time positions at MidState and the Hospital of Central Connecticut earlier this month. Throughout Connecticut, Hartford HealthCare, which includes five hospitals, eliminated the equivalent of 350 full-time positions. The Hospital of Central Connecticut has campuses in Southington and New Britain and operates six satellite diagnostic centers in Southington.

Jose Perez, Connecticut Health Care Associates executive secretary, said there would be reductions at the Southington Diagnostic Center. He said he didn’t know the number of employees affected.

The radiology portion of the center will close after June 27, but the lab will remain open.

Labs which are closing at the same time include the Plantsville Diagnostic Center on Main Street, the West Street Diagnostic Center on West Street, and the Hospital of Central Connecticut Specimen Collection Center on Meriden-Waterbury Turnpike. Radiology will no longer be available after June 27 at the West Street Diagnostic Center as well.

Perez cited the closure of the operating room and plans to close the inpatient unit as parts of a “disturbing” trend at the Hospital of Central Connecticut Bradley campus.

Read more here.


HOCC Stroke, Cardiology Programs Recognized

New Britain Herald, June 18

The Hospital of Central Connecticut has been recognized nationally with three awards related to its stroke and cardiology programs.

HOCC received the Get With the Guidelines — Stroke Gold-Plus Quality Achievement Award and the Heart Failure Bronze Quality Achievement Award after implementing key quality improvement measures outlined by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association and American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology Foundation, respectively.

In addition, the hospital received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline Bronze Plus Receiving Quality Achievement Award for implementing quality improvement measures to treat ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) heart attacks.

Read more here.

Health Care News In the Region

ECHN Sets More Public Hearings On $105 Million Buyout

Journal Inquirer, June 6

Eastern Connecticut Health Network has put a $105 million price tag on its acquisition by the for-profit hospital chain Tenet Healthcare Corp. and its junior partner in the joint venture behind the buyout, Yale New Haven Health System.

But ECHN says that estimated cost is subject to “certain adjustments,” including reductions for its outstanding debt, pensions and retiree health benefits, capital leases, and other items such as asbestos cleanup.

Such reductions would be “substantial,” according to the regional nonprofit, whose CEO has said it currently has “about $100 million in debt” as well as a pension liability of “about $79 million.”

Read more here.


Waterbury Hospital Files Additional Information For Proposed Tenet Acquisition

Republican American, June 6

Greater Waterbury Health Network, parent of Waterbury Hospital, on June 6 filed with state regulators supplemental information to its certificate of need application to be acquired by Tenet Healthcare Corp.

The application — more than 2,000 pages and filed with the state Office of Health Care Access and Attorney General George Jepsen's office — has been on hold for nearly a year while a solution was sought to address the corporate practice of medicine in Connecticut.

Main points in the supplement include acknowledging Tenet's acquisition of Nashville-based hospital operator Vanguard Health Systems and state legislation that addressed the corporate practice of medicine issue.

Tuesday, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy signed legislation making changes for reviewing and approving hospital conversions that will clear the way for the state's nonprofit hospitals to become for-profit. When it takes effect Oct. 1, the law will permit for-profit ventures to form medical foundations to employ doctors without violating anti-kickback laws. Previous law permitted only nonprofits to organize medical foundations that could hire doctors.

Yale-New Haven Health System and Tenet in March formed a partnership in which Yale would extend its services to Waterbury and three other hospitals Tenet proposes to acquire — Bristol Hospital and Eastern Connecticut Health Network's Manchester Memorial and Rockville General hospitals.

Read more here.


CT Healthcare Construction Most Active in New England

Hartford Business Journal, June 13

Hospitals and other healthcare providers are spending more money on major Connecticut construction projects than in any other New England state, according to a study by Revista. Ongoing and upcoming hospital and medical office building construction projects this year have a total construction value of $1.76 billion.

That's ahead of Massachusetts' $1.15 billion worth of ongoing and upcoming projects, as well as Maine's $337 million and New Hampshire's $124 million.

Leading the way in Connecticut is the $450 million replacement of Stamford Hospital, which broke ground last year. Next up is UConn Health Center's patient tower and $203 million outpatient pavilion, and John Dempsey Hospital's $163 million expansion — all in Farmington.


To Improve Patient Care, CT Hospitals Will Ask: Are You A Veteran?

Hartford Courant, June 19

Connecticut hospitals will be required to ask all patients if they are veterans, under a new state law that takes effect Oct. 1.

The law is part of a nationwide effort conceived by the State Veterans Affairs Commissioner Linda Schwartz to make private health providers aware that they are treating veterans, since most veterans don't go to federal Veterans Health Administration facilities. The goal is to improve veterans' diagnoses and health care because military experiences are linked to certain illnesses, she said.

Read more here.


Patient Satisfaction High at Bradley Memorial

Central CT Post, June 19

The Emergency Department (ED) at The Hospital of Central Connecticut’s Bradley Memorial campus achieved Press Ganey patient satisfaction scores in the 95th percentile in the nation among ED peers for first quarter 2014.

“We believe in providing the highest quality in patient care and the best hospital experience,” said Dr. Eric Hobert, medical director, Bradley Memorial campus ED. “We treat everyone in our department like we would want to be treated ourselves.” Patient satisfaction scores at the Bradley

Read more here.


Hot Topics in Health Care

How Hospitals Are Reinventing Themselves

HealthLeaders Media, June 6

Trying to envision the hospital of the future in the context of the changing healthcare landscape is a bit like trying to envision the future of the internal combustion engine in the automobile industry: They won't go away, but they'll be a smaller and smaller piece of the whole as time goes on.

The successful healthcare entity of the future might include one inpatient hospital or several, but that modality of care—the most expensive—is also likely to decline in importance to the whole as the dust settles from the vast array of changes healthcare reform brings with it.

In many respects, the movement away from the inpatient setting for many organizations is long underway. Many describe this shift almost as an investment diversification strategy: You don't want the majority of the income for your organization coming from a declining business line.

Read more here

Coming Events

June 23 (Monday)

Family Health Center in Storrs Grand Opening

Storrs Family Health Center, 5-7 p.m.

June 25 (Wednesday)

Schwartz Center Rounds: Advanced Self Preservation for Healthcare Providers

Gilman Auditorium, 11:30 a.m.-12:45 p.m.

June 25 (Wednesday)

CT Health Council Event: "The Patient is the Future"

The Norwalk Inn & Conference Center, 7:30-9:30 a.m.

June 26 (Thursday)

Advancing Medicine: Men's Health

WFSB-Channel 3, 7:30 p.m.

July 8 (Tuesday)

High Reliability Training Session for Physicians

JB-118, 6:45-8:15 a.m.

July 9 (Wednesday)

High Reliability Training Session for Physicians

JB-118, 5:30-7 p.m.

July 12 (Saturday)

ERRACE (Everyone Ride / Run Against Cancer Everyday)

Avon Cancer Center

ERRACE (Everyone Ride / Run Against Cancer Everyday), the Helen & Harry Gray Cancer Center, 80 Fisher Drive, Avon. For more information:

August 13 (Wednesday)

High Reliability Training Session for Physicians

JB-118, 6:45-8:15 a.m.

August 14 (Thursday)

High Reliability Training Session for Physicians

JB-118, 5:30-7 p.m.

September 8 (Monday)

Hospital Auxiliary Golf Tournament

Tumble Brook Country Club, Bloomfield

September 18 (Thursday)

The Mind-Body Connection: Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care

Maneeley's in South Windsor, 11:15 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Integrated Care Partners is offering its first annual conference on The Mind-Body Connection: Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care on Thursday, Sept. 18. Keynote speaker will be Dr. Henry Chung, VP and CMO of Montefiore Care Management Organization. Welcome remarks will come from CT LT. Gov. Nancy Wyman.

For more information go to

November 6 (Thursday)

9th Annual Interdisciplinary Transplant Symposium

Sheraton Hartford South Hotel in Rocky Hill

November 20 (Thursday)

Annual Meeting of Hartford Hospital Corporators

Heublein Hall, 11:45 a.m.-2 p.m.



January 24, 2015 (Saturday)

Black & Red

The Bushnell

Join us for a night with the Blues Brothers Starring Dan Aykroyd & Jim Belushi and a celebration of the dedication and extraordinary work of the Hartford Hospital Trauma Center at the 24th annual Black & Red gala on Saturday, January 24, 2015, at The Bushnell in Hartford. Stay tuned for ticket and sponsorship information. For up-to-the-minute details, visit

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