MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute Implemented New Transplant Protocol and Performed More Kidney Transplants than any Other Hospital in U.S. During COVID-19 Pandemic.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute performed more kidney transplants than any other hospital in the U.S., and successfully safeguarded all its transplant recipients and living organ donors, from contracting COVID-19.

From March to May MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute performed 115 organ transplants – 90 of which were kidney transplants with 23 of them from living donors. This record number is nearly equal to the total number of transplants performed by all regional hospitals combined. bar graph of kidney transplants in the Washington, D.C. sourced by UNOS.org

In collaboration with MedStar Georgetown’s infectious disease team and the coordinated efforts across the MedStar Health System, the Transplant Institute took early and aggressive measures to implement the highest safety protocols to safeguard the health and wellness of vulnerable transplant recipients and living donors during the unprecedented challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Patients with organ failure are among the most vulnerable populations, and life-saving transplants are critical. While caring for patients with COVID-19 was an urgent mission, we could not abandon equally critical transplant patients. We surveyed best practices across the nation, evaluated which centers were surviving and which were not, and developed a systematic approach that was individualized for us. Working quickly and involving everyone from the top of the organization down lead to our success," Executive Director of the MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute, Dr. Thomas Fishbein, said. 

Many transplant programs around the country temporarily halted or significantly reduced the number of transplants they performed during this time. “It’s easy to say no,” said Dr. Matthew Cooper, director of Kidney and Pancreas Transplantation and a Professor of Surgery at Georgetown University School of Medicine, said. “We are fortunate that with the hard work of the Institute, the administration here at MedStar Georgetown, and the overall MedStar Health system, we were able to say yes to keeping the open sign up.” 

The enhanced safety and infection prevention protocol included: priority COVID-19 testing for transplant recipients to rule out recipients who had the virus before they were transplanted, COVID-19-free units in the hospital to minimize infection risk for transplant patients, use of telehealth to reduce hospital visits for pre-screenings and post-transplant management and deploying travel nurses to patient homes for laboratory testing. These quick-actions reduced the risk of exposure before, during, and after transplant surgery.  

A significant number of transplant patients traveled from various parts of the country for their life-saving care at MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute. 

MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute is headquartered at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and provides life-restoring care to patients with end-stage organ failure. As one of the highest volume transplant programs in the United States, the Institute has performed more than 7,598 liver, kidney, pancreas, small bowel, colon, stomach, and multi-organ transplants to date. Additionally, the MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute offers outpatient kidney evaluations at MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center, MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center, and other locations in Maryland and Virginia.

About MedStar Georgetown University Hospital is a not-for-profit, acute-care teaching and research hospital licensed for 609 beds located in Northwest Washington, D.C. Founded in the Jesuit principle of cura personalis, caring for the whole person, MedStar Georgetown is committed to offering a variety of innovative diagnostic and treatment options within a trusting and compassionate environment. MedStar Georgetown’s centers of excellence include neurosciences, transplant, cancer, and gastroenterology. Along with Magnet® nurses, internationally recognized physicians, advanced research, and cutting-edge technologies, MedStar Georgetown’s healthcare professionals have a reputation for medical excellence and leadership.

 

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Study shows Retzius-sparing robotic prostatectomy at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital improves patient quality of life without compromising cancer control

Washington, D.C. — Retzius-sparing robotic prostatectomy, an innovative surgical approach to treat men with prostate cancer, has shown to significantly reduce the risk of urinary incontinence, or urine leakage, and also improve patient’s quality of life without compromising oncological outcomes, according to a new study led by Keith Kowalczyk, M.D., director, Urologic Oncology at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital. Only the 3rd of its kind in the United States, this study examined data gathered from 140 radical prostatectomies performed by Dr. Kowalczyk over a 4-year period at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital.

 Keith Kowalczyk, MD with DaVinci Xi Dual Console RobotThe findings show that, in comparison to standard robotic prostatectomy, men undergoing Retzius-sparing robotic prostatectomy had higher rates of continence (98% vs. 81%), achieved continence earlier (49 vs. 64 days), and demonstrated 80% lower risk of suffering from incontinence one year following surgery.  Additionally, men undergoing Retzius-sparing prostatectomy had significantly better overall quality of life one year following surgery.

Urinary incontinence and compromised quality of life following a radical prostatectomy has been a barrier to seeking appropriate care for some prostate cancer patients. “We tend to underestimate the effect that even mild urine leakage may have on patient’s quality of life and well-being following prostatectomy. That is why I decided to learn this new technique, even though it is technically very challenging.  I am glad that I did because I have seen a remarkable improvement in outcomes for my patients as seen in this study,” Dr. Kowalczyk said.

Following robotic prostatectomy, most patients were able to leave the hospital less than 24 hours after surgery and resume routine activities in 1–2 weeks. Additionally, patients undergoing Robotic surgery tend to have less pain and discomfort following the surgery, translating to a minimal need for pain medications during hospitalization and no need for narcotic pain medications at home. Sean Hawkins, a patient who underwent the surgery said, “After about 3 weeks I regained all of my functions and ended up going back to work earlier than I expected, I got my life back totally.”

 “Robotic surgery allows for a much more precise surgery with much easier recovery and less blood loss for the patient,” said Dr. Kowalczyk. “With Retzius-sparing robotic prostatectomy, the whole surgery is done in a very small space in the pelvis which is not accessible during traditional open surgery.  This allows us to leave as much as the normal pelvic anatomy intact as possible without causing surrounding damage, which is most likely what leads to these improved outcomes.”

Medstar Georgetown University Hospital acquired the DaVinci Xi Dual Console robot in February 2020, and Dr. Kowalczyk has started performing the surgeries on this platform. The state-of-the-art surgical system offers a minimally-invasive option for patients who require a prostatectomy. The new technology uses fine instrumentation, 3-D visuals, increased magnification, and only requires a less than ½ inch incision.  In addition, the DaVanci Xi platform allows improved visualization and improved movement of instrumentation. “Using the Xi platform has made this surgery much easier for me, for sure.” said Dr. Kowalczyk.

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MedStar Georgetown University Hospital Division of Community Pediatrics Responds to Families in Need During COVID-19 Pandemic

WASHINGTON – The Division of Community Pediatrics, committed to delivering quality clinical services and programming to the most vulnerable children and families in Washington, D.C., amplified its services to help families experiencing hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Since March 16, MedStar Georgetown’s Community Pediatrics team has provided families with navigation services, including social and legal support, to connect families with essential resources. The team also delivered 10,000 meals, 150 care packages and grocery store gift cards to patient families.

“We quickly recognized the disproportionate impact this pandemic has on our families' ability to access food and basic supplies, as well as heightened social, educational and mental health needs,” says Dr. Janine Rethy, division chief of Community Pediatrics. “We urgently redirected significant efforts and resources to identify and meet those needs.”

Throughout the pandemic, the Division of Community Pediatrics has continued to meet the needs of patients with in-person visits for urgent care and well child-care, prioritizing those children who need vaccinations. The team also expanded their scope of services to provide scheduled secure telehealth visits for children with special healthcare needs, such as asthma, ADHD and behavioral health concerns.

The Division of Community Pediatrics also expanded its family navigation and care coordination services for children and adolescents with complex health and social service needs, boosted mental health support, and provided intensive support to connect community and public benefits resources—including referrals to legal services with its medical-legal partner, Health Justice Alliance.

Additionally, the team distributed weekly mental health videos to partnering schools that focused on dealing with grief and anxiety during the pandemic, the videos have been incorporated into distance learning curriculums.

The Ronald McDonald Care Mobile® Focused on FITNESS program has also created and disseminated educational resources and videos on mindfulness and at-home yoga; these materials have too been shared with partnering schools to be incorporated into distance learning courses.

“We will not waver in our commitment to provide care and support for our patients as the disparities heightened by this pandemic continue to affect our community,” Dr. Rethy said. “We are grateful for the generosity of our community members and philanthropic partners such has Ronald McDonald House Charities of Greater Washington, DC®, CVS Health, Share Our Strength, Power of 10, and the individual donors in our community who have helped make our outreach possible.”

For 27 years the Division of Community Pediatrics at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital has devoted itself to providing access to evidence-based, comprehensive, coordinated health care to children who need it most throughout the Washington, D,C. area.  Programs include the KID Mobile Medical Clinic/Ronald McDonald Care Mobile®, the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile® Focused on FITNESS program, and two school-based health centers at DC Public Schools: Theodore Roosevelt High School and Anacostia High School.

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Philanthropic Leaders Advance the New Medical/Surgical Pavilion with Commitment to Neurosciences

Washington, D.C.– Thanks to an inspiring multimillion-dollar philanthropic investment from the Bernstein Family, which includes Wilma and Stuart Bernstein, Richard Bernstein, Tracy and Adam Bernstein, and Lisa and Josh Bernstein and the Diane and Norman Bernstein Foundation, as well as Nancy and Marc Duber, who is executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Bernstein Companies real estate firm, the Medical/Surgical Pavilion at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital will be home to the Bernstein Family Patient Care Floor for Neuroscience Excellence.

Currently under construction, the facility’s design puts patient care and comfort at the forefront while promoting the very latest best practices in neurological care. Incorporating the most advanced medical technologies, the floor will be home to 52 patient beds in tranquil patient rooms, and both intensive care and intermediate care units.

“We are so very grateful to the Bernstein family for their generous gift, which will make a real and lasting impact for our patients and caregivers helping us to bring the world class care we deliver to a new world class, state-of-the-art facility,” says Michael C. Sachtleben, president of MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and a senior vice president for MedStar Health.

For former U.S. Ambassador Stuart Bernstein and Mrs. Bernstein, this partnership was motivated by gratitude for their personal experiences with two leading clinicians at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. “At the Department of Neurology, my family experienced true excellence in care,” says Ambassador Bernstein. “Our philanthropic investment is intended to promote the life-changing work that MedStar Georgetown clinicians perform each day—and in doing so, to support the health and well-being of our community.”

As business and property owners in Georgetown, the Bernstein Family is especially excited to have the Hospital’s new Medical/Surgical Pavilion in their neighborhood. It will represent a new standard in how patients receive their care by offering private patient rooms, state-of-the-art operating rooms, a beautiful new green space to enhance the patient experience and compliment the healing environment, and a brand-new Emergency Department which will double in size and provide a more accessible, efficient and welcoming community resource for Georgetown residents and businesses.

One of the visionary partners, Mr. Duber, member of the board of directors and chair of the Philanthropy Committee at MedStar Health, along with his wife Nancy Duber, hope that this philanthropic investment will inspire others to partner with MedStar Georgetown. “The Medical/ Surgical Pavilion is an opportunity to support MedStar Georgetown at a pivotal moment in its long history,” says Marc Duber. “From growing our local health resources to facilitating broad-reaching research breakthroughs, this expansion is a cause worth cheering.”

To see more, including architectural renderings of the new pavilion, please visit MedStarGeorgetown.org/NewBuilding.

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MedStar Georgetown First and Only Center in the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Region to Offer Proton Therapy for Cancer Patients

Dr. Brain Collins with MedStar Georgetown’s first patient to receive proton therapy.(Washington, D.C) April 17, 2018- For the first time, cancer patients in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region have access to the latest cancer-fighting technology, proton radiation therapy, now available at the MedStar Georgetown University Hospital Proton Therapy Center.

Martha Ramos, 53 of Maryland became MedStar Georgetown’s first patient to receive proton therapy.  Ramos is being treated for recurrence of a brain tumor.  

“It’s encouraging to know that this kind of radiation will result in less damage to the healthy area of my brain,” says Ramos. 

Proton therapy is more precise and targeted than conventional radiation. It works by using pencil beam scanning, similar to a 3D printer, to match the tumor’s exact shape and size with superior accuracy that eliminates the exit dose of traditional radiation, and spares healthy tissue.

MedStar Georgetown is the first and only proton center in the world to offer the Mevion S250i with HYPERSCAN™ technology, producing beams that are sharper than previous proton systems. Proton therapy with HYPERSCAN is also faster than other proton systems, benefiting patients whose treatment includes holding their breath.

“I am extremely excited to be able to offer this latest advancement, proton therapy, to my patients,” says Brian Collins, MD, a radiation oncologist and clinical director of the new proton therapy center.  “It’s clear that this treatment will help to improve the clinical outcomes for our cancer patients and decrease their side effects when radiation is needed.”

 “In certain cases, proton therapy can be a game changer,” says Keith Unger, MD, radiation oncologist at MedStar Georgetown.  “It allows us to treat cancers where traditional radiation might not even be possible."

How Protons Destroy Cancer

“Proton therapy is an advanced form of radiation that can destroy cancer cells,” says Peter Ahn, MD, a radiation oncologist at MedStar Georgetown.  “A machine called a cyclotron speeds up protons to two thirds the speed of light and they become highly charged.  These high energy protons are then delivered to the tumor as an invisible beam that eradicates the cancer.  Because we can more tightly control the protons than we are able with traditional radiation, proton therapy can be given without damaging critical tissues and structures near the tumor because the beam conforms  precisely to the tumor’s size and shape, sparing healthy tissue.”

Advantages of HYPERSCAN™

HYPERSCAN is an FDA-approved proprietary technology that has advantages over existing proton therapy systems. In addition to producing a micro beam that is sharper than many current proton systems and reducing damage to nearby healthy tissue, HYPERSCAN is also faster than other pencil beam scanning systems which can reduce the margin of error in treating tumors that are affected by breathing or organ motion.  This improves both treatment accuracy and patient comfort as patients need to spend less time lying still.

“HYPERSCAN is currently the most precise type of proton therapy in the world,” says Dr. Ahn. 

“Proton therapy with HYPERSCAN can be given from head to toe,” says Dr. Collins.

Cancer Treatment for Patients with Fewer Side Effects

Proton therapy is beneficial for pediatric cancer patients because it lowers their exposure to radiation avoiding unnecessary exposure to healthy tissue and resulting in less growth impairment as they grow up.  Children are less likely to develop a secondary cancer later in life when treated with proton therapy as it treats tumors while keeping health surrounding tissues unharmed.

proton therapy patient with doctorProton therapy is also effective in treating re-current tumors.

 “There are also certain types of cancer where you have to deliver a very high dose of radiation right next to a critical structure like the spinal cord or brainstem,” says Sonali Rudra, MD, radiation oncologist at MedStar Georgetown. “With proton therapy we can deliver a high dose to the area we are trying to target and minimize the radiation beyond the tumor.  So for some patients, proton therapy might be their only radiation treatment option.”

“Proton therapy can also be a good option for patients with left-sided breast cancer, which is close to the heart,” says Dr. Rudra. “When indicated for breast cancer, using proton therapy instead of traditional radiation means more control over the radiation itself and less potential damage to the heart and lungs.”

Proton Therapy Closer to Home and Under One Roof

“The addition of proton therapy is a logical next step for a center like MedStar Georgetown as part of the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, dedicated to and recognized for providing the latest cancer treatments and access to clinical research trials,” says Dr. Collins.

Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center is one of only 49 sites in the nation and the only center in Washington, D.C. to earn the prestigious Comprehensive Cancer Center designation by the National Cancer Institute.

“All the multiple specialties and disciplines involved in cancer care are here helping to support patients through their treatment, in one location, under one roof,” says Dr. Unger. “They no longer have to travel outside of our area to receive this advanced treatment.”

 “The addition of proton therapy means MedStar Georgetown offers the full range of radiation treatments for cancer that are available,” says Dr. Collins.  “For patients that means we take an individual approach when considering radiation therapy. Whether it’s CyberKnife, proton therapy or conventional radiation, we will choose the optimal treatment to achieve the best outcomes with the fewest side effects.”

 

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MedStar Georgetown First in the Nation Recognized for Excellence in Blood Management

National Certification Optimizes Care and Safety for Patients

Washington, D.C., March 30, 2017 -  MedStar Georgetown University Hospital is proud to become the first hospital in the United States to receive a prestigious distinction in recognition of excellence in patient blood management.

In a ceremony today at MedStar Georgetown, The Joint Commission and the AABB (formerly known as the American Association of Blood Banks) presented hospital representatives with the first Patient Blood Management Certification.

The certification provides a third party review and evaluation of patient blood management based on the AABB Standards for a Patient Blood Management Program, and an evidence-based approach to providing the best care to patients who might need transfusions. The Joint Commission is a national organization that accredits and certifies more than 21-thousand healthcare institutions and programs, nationwide.

“We at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital are very proud to be the first center in the nation to receive this important certification in Patient Blood Management from The Joint Commission and AABB, says Michael C. Sachtleben, president, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. “This distinction is a testament to the hard work of our associates who promote patient safety through a comprehensive blood management program that uses internationally accepted systems and techniques. Our patients benefit from this innovative certification that recognizes our commitment to continuously improve our processes and procedures when it comes to patient-centered blood management and services. We thank the Joint Commission and the AABB for this program that will benefit patients nationwide.”

“We are proud to accept this distinction on behalf of our multi-disciplinary teams who work to promote quality care and patient safety through the use of practices that reduce risk by decreasing unnecessary transfusions, and improve patient outcomes,” says Lisa Boyle, MD, vice president of Medical Affairs at MedStar Georgetown. "This designation from The Joint Commission and the AABB demonstrates that our program has been evaluated to nationally recognized standards to benefit our patients."

One particular aspect of blood management at MedStar Georgetown is a Bloodless Medicine Program which is designed to eliminate blood transfusions altogether through the use of state of the art technologies that minimize blood loss and maximize the oxygen-carrying capabilities of blood during surgery and other medical treatments.
“Whether for religious or other reasons, our Bloodless Medicine and Surgery Program is state-of-the-art medical and surgical treatment without the use of blood transfusion,” says Mike Hofmann, coordinator, MedStar Georgetown’s Bloodless Medicine and Surgery Program. “Evidence from the treatment of this patient population has shown that bloodless medicine and surgery provides safe and effective alternatives to blood transfusion and holds the promise of a higher standard of care for all.”

The Patient Blood Management Certification is valid for two years.

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Transplant Patient Starts off New Year with a Better Night’s Sleep and Gratitude for NPR Listeners after National Broadcast

Creasey being interviewedMedStar Georgetown kidney transplant recipient Constance Creasey learned about the kindness of strangers after a national radio broadcast featured her story, along with an interview with Dr. Matthew Cooper, MD, medical director of the Kidney Pancreas Transplant program at the MedStar Georgetown Transplant Institute.

NPR national medical correspondent Richard Harris compiled a story about Medicare coverage of anti-rejection drugs that expires after three years, but continues to pay for dialysis and even a new transplant. Dr. Cooper commented that this is a policy he believes needs to change.

To add patient perspective NPR interviewed Creasey, age 60 of Washington, D.C. who mentioned that sleeping on a bed is a luxury she can’t afford because she has to save money for her anti-rejection medications. When NPR’s Morning Edition  listeners heard the story on December 22, many wanted to donate and began to contact NPR and MGUH Media Relations to find out how.

A woman from Virginia bought Creasey a bed right after the holidays, while donated gift cards from all over the country provided her with sheets and blankets. Another woman from Illinois started a funding page for Creasey; some listeners donated to the MGTI's patient assistance fund that helps patients like Creasey in similar situations.  

“I was overwhelmed and in total disbelief,” said Creasey. “I didn’t feel like I deserved it.  I was just trying to bring awareness to this issue for other people like myself.” 

Creasey spent 11 years on dialysis after her kidney failed and received a transplant in 2015. Thankfully, the surgery was a success. However, to prevent rejection, Creasey will have to take medication for the rest of her life. She is becoming increasingly concerned about how she is going to pay for her medication after Medicare stops covering the costs in 2018. 

Creasey has been “truly grateful” for what people have given her since the story on NPR. She is enjoying her brand new bed, headboard and frame with sheets, a comforter and some curtains. She is happy to finally make her room a little more like home.  Creaseys says she can now turn her heat down because sleeping on the floor was cold.

“I’m starting off my new year with more faith in people. This experience has touched my heart and I can’t thank everyone enough, “Creasey said.

-Shannon McCarthy

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MedStar Georgetown Ranked #1 in Washington, D.C. Region by U.S. News and World Report

 

(Washington, D.C.) August 3, 2016 - MedStar Georgetown University Hospital has been ranked as the #1 hospital in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region by U.S. News and World Report in its annual ranking of hospitals nationwide.  “We are very proud of this ranking as it recognizes the dedication and hard work of our more than 5,000 associates who are committed to providing safe, high quality care to our patients and their families,” said Michael Sachtleben, president, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital.

Healthcare is complex and rating hospitals is an intricate process.  There are many organizations that publish hospital rankings, each with its own approach and methodology, and rankings can vary.  While rankings can differ, at MedStar Georgetown one thing that will not waver is our commitment to our mission of providing safe, high-quality care to all of our patients in the spirit of cura personalis, care of the whole person.  We celebrate this recognition with all of our associates with pride and excitement.

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MedStar Georgetown Recognized for Expertise in Treatment of Pancreatic Diseases

 

Washington, D.C. – September 28, 2015 - MedStar Georgetown University Hospital is proud to be one of 30 centers in the United States and the only facility in the Washington, D.C. area, recognized for the care of people with pancreatic diseases by the National Pancreas Foundation. The NPF is a non-profit organization that awards the designation after rigorously reviewing an institution for its focus on multidisciplinary treatment of pancreatitis and treating the “whole person” with a focus on the best possible outcomes and an improved quality of life.

“We are honored to receive the NPF designation and we hope it will help patients suffering with pancreatic disorders find the expertise they need by seeking out NPF centers for their care,” said Nadim Haddad, MD, chief, Gastroenterology at MedStar Georgetown.  “Patients with pancreatic diseases often present with complicated symptoms that require a high level of expertise to correctly diagnose and treat. At MedStar Georgetown we have a comprehensive set of services including the latest technology in pancreatic diagnostics, pain management, the newest treatments for pancreatic cancer, pancreas transplant and now islet cell transplant.”

“The NPF Center designation will help us to better serve this important patient population,” said Matthew Alsante, executive director of the National Pancreas Foundation. “We can recommend with confidence that patients will receive quality care at these designated centers.”

An approved NPF Center has to meet the criteria that were developed by a task force of medical experts and patient advocates. Criteria include having required expert physician specialists like gastroenterologists, pancreas surgeons and interventional radiologists along with patient-focused programs like pain management services, psychosocial support and more. Designated centers also seek to advance research and lead the way for heightened awareness and understanding of pancreatitis and related conditions among community physicians, allied health professionals, patients, families and the general public.

 

About The National Pancreas Foundation

Founded in 1997, the National Pancreas Foundation provides hope for those suffering from pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer through funding cutting-edge research, advocating for new and better therapies and providing support and education for patients, caregivers and healthcare professionals. The NPF is the only foundation dedicated to patients suffering from all forms of pancreas disease. For more information visit: www.pancreasfoundation.org.

 

Meet Dr. Nadim Haddad

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NPF_Logo

Nursing Studies Aim For Better Patient Care at Medstar Georgetown

(Washington, D.C.) – The Magnet® nurses at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital are conducting studies aimed at improved and even more supportive patient care.

“Nurses often work the closest and the longest hours with our patients, so their input can really make a huge difference,” said Kimberly Groner, MSN, RN, ANP-C, CCRC, NE-BC, director of Professional Practice, Research and Outcomes at MedStar Georgetown.

 “MedStar Georgetown nurses have studied new ways to benefit our patients for many years. I’ve seen nursing research make strides in specialties like transplant, pain management, rheumatologic diseases, cognitive and behavioral therapy, exercise and arthritis.”

One study involves nurses at MedStar Georgetown and their perceptions, comfort and support of advance care planning. On National Healthcare Decisions Day on April 16 Georgetown nurses set up information tables, handed out packets and answered questions from 220 patients and visitors about advance care planning.   Study leaders will use a survey taken by two groups of nurses to gauge whether or not the event influenced their knowledge and perceptions.

“Our nurses want to have the knowledge and comfort to assist patients who need information about advance care planning, “said Groner. “This study will look at whether or not getting involved with an effort to educate the public helps.”

Debra Long, a recent in-patient at MedStar Georgetown discusses her opinions on the video tool study with principal investigator Marlena Fisher, BSN, RN, CCRN
Debra Long, a recent in-patient at MedStar Georgetown discusses her opinions on the video tool study with principal investigator Marlena Fisher, BSN, RN, CCRN

Another study uses a video tool to provide patients and their families with information in laypersons’ terms about cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), life support and patient/family confidence in their decisions about end of life care.  

“Participants take a questionnaire before and after viewing a ten minute video to see if their knowledge on these important topics improves,” said Groner. Our aim is to survey fifty people at first and if we find it helpful, we will make the video a standard practice to include more patients because we will have evidence-based research to prove that it works.”

Debra Long, a recent in-patient at MedStar Georgetown participated in the video tool study administered by principal investigator Marlena Fisher, BSN, RN, CCRN.

Debra Long, a recent in-patient at MedStar Georgetown, participated in the video tool study.
Debra Long views the video tool on about cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), life support, and other subjects related to care.

“I thought the video was very helpful,” said Long.  I was very comfortable watching it and I think others would benefit from the information provided. I have talked with my family members about these very issues.”

“Research has shown that traditional methods to educate patients about CPR and life-sustaining measures haven’t worked very well,” said Fisher. “We want to provide our patients with the terms used by the medical community and see if the video helps them retain the information. Participation in the survey is completely voluntary.”

MedStar Georgetown nurses are also studying the effects of a curriculum whose purpose is to improve the care of the elderly, called NICHE, Nurses Improving Care for Health System Elders.

MedStar Georgetown nurses, who are already NICHE certified are looking at a protocol that could mean a better night’s sleep for some older patients.

“The nurses consulted with physicians and proposed taking patients’ vital signs at 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. instead of midnight and 8 a.m.,” said Groner. We think these might be hours when patients are actually sleeping and we want to determine if this allows for a more restful patient experience. It could be a very simple and practical way to help our patient get better sleep and maybe even heal faster.”

MedStar Georgetown was the first center in Washington, D.C. to achieve prestigious Magnet status back in 2004 by the American Nurses’ Credentialing Center (ANCC) and joins just 71 other institutions, or fewer than seven percent of hospitals nationwide, to be recognized by the Magnet Recognition Program® three times in a row.  The program recognizes healthcare organizations for quality patient care, nursing excellence and innovations in professional nursing practice.

Nurses-National-Healthcare-Decisions-Day-by-M-Worley

 

About MedStar Georgetown University Hospital

MedStar Georgetown University Hospital is a not-for-profit, acute-care teaching and research hospital with 609 beds located in Northwest Washington, D.C. Founded in the Jesuit principle of cura personalis—caring for the whole person—MedStar Georgetown is committed to offering a variety of innovative diagnostic and treatment options within a trusting and compassionate environment.

MedStar Georgetown’s centers of excellence include neurosciences, transplant, cancer and gastroenterology. Along with Magnet® nurses, internationally recognized physicians, advanced research and cutting-edge technologies, MedStar Georgetown’s healthcare professionals have a reputation for medical excellence and leadership. MedStar Georgetown University Hospital—Knowledge and Compassion Focused on You.

 

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