WVU Medicine Cabinet News Stories

Chestnut Ridge awards annual Grassroots Grants

Alzheimer’s Association of West Virginia – for reprinting and updating Alzheimer’s services prescription pads [...]

HealthNet implements new flight method at Morgantown base

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – HealthNet Aeromedical Services has implemented a new method of flight operation in order to decrease the number of EMS flights that have to be cancelled due to poor visibility or low-hanging clouds. The new method, known as Instrument Flight Rules (IFR), is one of two sets of Federal Aviation Regulations governing civil aviation aircraft operation. It allows flights to operate in poor meteorological conditions – typically those where pilots must rely on navigation methods other than sight, including a system of ground-based navigation tools and satellite-based GPS systems. In early April, HealthNet pilots attended a week of formal classroom training with Air Methods in Denver, Colo. Air Methods partners with HealthNet to provide aviation service at its eight bases. Classroom training was followed by extensive in-flight training sessions simulating poor weather conditions. Pilots utilized “foggles,” which are goggle-type glasses that imitate clouds and fog. Pilots then learn how to navigate without any ground references. “They can’t look out the window and get their bearings from buildings, hills, the horizon, etc.,” Dave M. Wilson, program aviation manager for Air Methods, said. “They have to rely on electronic signals. It’s very different from what they’re used to.” Currently, Air Methods has approximately 40 air medical programs around the U.S. utilizing IFR. “As a program, HealthNet takes safety very seriously,” Bernie Reynolds, regional aviation director for Air Methods Northeast Region, said. “IFR is just another example of HealthNet’s commitment to providing safe air medical transport services to its customers and remaining on the cutting edge of flight techniques.” Reynolds added the primary focus of IFR training is to teach pilots to adhere to a disciplined set of procedures so that each flight is operated the same way under any weather circumstances. “We throw in as many distractions as possible during the training and teach them how to react,” he said. HealthNet first became interested in utilizing IFR after the purchase of its EC-145 helicopter, which is equipped to perform single-pilot IFR and has a fully redundant cockpit. This means that every system has a complete backup, according to Stellman Teter, chief flight nurse/base manager for HealthNet 1 in Morgantown. Once the helicopter was purchased, HealthNet conducted a three-month study to determine how many flights were declined due to poor weather conditions. In the first month alone, 19 flights were denied. Final study results showed that 11 of 19 flights could have been completed with the addition of IFR. Teter said both the pilots and flight crews have been excited about IFR, calling it a “wonderful addition to the program.” “HealthNet pilots have worked extensively with their flight crews to share their knowledge, and with each training session, the confidence level of the crew has increased tremendously,” he said. “Everyone’s goal is the same – to improve response times and to reach accident victims despite low visibility. IFR does just that.” Four HealthNet pilots have completed the training and several successful IFR transports have been conducted from the Morgantown base. Plans are to continue to expand the IFR method to the other HealthNet bases within the next 18 months. “The transition of HealthNet’s Morgantown base to IFR operations is another example of how the organization leverages technology to serve our patients,” Clinton Burley, HealthNet interim president and CEO, said. “We will now be able to safely reach critically ill and injured persons in more marginal weather conditions. Each time we fly, our expert medical teams bring the highest level of care to our patients. IFR simply increases our reach, and ultimately, the patient benefits.” [...]

Bonnie’s Bus to offer mammograms in Buckeye and Webster Springs

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Bonnie’s Bus, a digital mammography center on wheels, will visit Pocahontas and Webster counties, offering digital mammograms and breast care education to women. A service of WVU Healthcare and the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, Bonnie’s Bus will be at: •    Pocahontas Memorial Hospital from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on July 24 and 25.  For an appointment in Buckeye call 304-799-4154. •    Webster County Memorial Hospital from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on July 26.  For an appointment in Webster Springs call 304-847-5682. The mammograms are billed to private insurance, Medicaid or Medicare if available. Mammograms for women who do not have insurance will be covered by the West Virginia Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program (WVBCCSP) or through special grant funds. No woman over 40 is turned away due to lack of funding.  A physician’s order is needed for a mammogram. Since the startup of the mobile mammography program in 2009, Bonnie’s Bus has travelled more than 40,000 miles and provided more than 3,000 mammograms.  More than half of those were screened in 2011.  Many of those screened are uninsured or underinsured and qualified for screening through the WVBCCSP. Bonnie’s Bus works in collaboration with a statewide partnership of clinicians, public health professionals, women’s groups, and other community leaders working to help reduce the number of deaths from breast cancer in West Virginia.   Made possible by a generous gift from West Virginia natives Jo and Ben Statler to the Cancer Center, Bonnie’s Bus is operated in partnership with WVU Hospitals. The bus is named after Jo Statler’s late mother, Bonnie Wells Wilson. For information on Bonnie’s Bus, see www.wvucancer.org/bonnie.     [...]

WVU Healthcare nurses organize Community Drive

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Nurses at WVU Healthcare will hold their 14th annual Community Drive next week in affiliation with the United Way Day of Caring. Donations will benefit Christian Help, which provides free clothing, food and emergency financial assistance to those in need in Monongalia and Preston counties. “We really appreciate the community’s response. It has helped the drive progress to where it is today,” Dottie Oakes, M.S.N., WVU Healthcare vice president and chief nurse executive, said. “Every year, Christian Help is overwhelmed by all the clothing received.” The Community Drive will be held from 7:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Aug. 1 at the former Foodland building located on the Mileground in Morgantown near John Howard Motors. The following items are being collected: non-perishable foods; toiletries and personal care items; medical scrub suits; backpacks filled with school supplies; and back-to-school clothes (new or like-new; focus is on preschool size 4-5). In the meantime, those who would like to drop off items early may do so at WVU Healthcare’s Volunteer Services Office located on the first floor of Ruby Memorial Hospital. Donations will be collected weekdays from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, July 16, through Friday, August 31. [...]

WVU Eye Institute receives grant to assist Appalachian Vision Outreach Program

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation recently provided the West Virginia University Eye Institute a $115,000 grant to assist the Appalachian Vision Outreach Program (AVOP), the goal of which to improve local vision care to the most underserved and socio-economically isolated populations of West Virginia.   This is Benedum Foundation’s second year of providing support to AVOP, which was established in 2011. With the Benedum Foundation’s support and additional support from private donors, the Eye Institute will partner with the WVU Lions Sight Conservation Foundation, local Lions Clubs throughout the state, members of the West Virginia Association of Free Clinics and community clinics, such as the Larry Joe Harless Community Center in Mingo County, to bring vision healthcare services to West Virginians. Vision screening, general clinics, sub-specialty clinical services, and education on the importance of vision health will be made available for those who don’t have access to regular eye care and are not able to travel to the Eye Institute because of lack of transportation or other barriers. “Benedum’s support of the AVOP is critical to helping us meet the vision healthcare needs of West Virginians,” Lee Wiley, M.D., interim chair of the Eye Institute, said. “Thanks to their investment, we are able to partner with other organizations to provide services to restore vision and prevent blindness, giving many West Virginians opportunities for independence and employability.” The Benedum Foundation’s mission is to encourage human development in West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania through strategically placed charitable resources. It encourages collaboration among the public, private and nonprofit sectors in order to leverage the resources that each can bring to common concerns. “It is sad to think that people have to see eye care as a luxury because of all of their other financial needs when it is such an important component of healthy living,” Kim Barber Tieman, Benedum Foundation program officer, said. “Benedum is pleased to collaborate with the AVOP and its partners to make accessible vision care available to West Virginians.” The contribution was made in conjunction with A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University. The $750 million comprehensive campaign being conducted by the WVU Foundation on behalf of the University runs through December 2015. [...]

WVU Healthcare among Most Wired

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Through [...]