News

ASPEN 2018 Nutrition Science and Practice Conference

Registered dietitians Anne Woodbury, of Utah Valley Specialty Hospital, and Jill Marshall, of Northern Idaho Advanced Care Hospital, recently were selected to present a poster on an initiative regarding how nutrition affect patients on ventilators at the national ASPEN 2018 Nutrition Science and Practice Conference in Las Vegas.

Titled “Nutrition Administration and Ventilator Weaning in Long-Term Acute Care,” the abstract also was published in the January 2018 Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition supplement.

These dietitians have been working on data collections and how nutrition promotes successful ventilator weaning.

Read More

Trustpoint Rehabilitation Hospital of Lubbock expands to meet growing community needs

Trustpoint Rehabilitation Hospital of Lubbock recently expanded from 60 to 93 beds to meet the growing post-acute healthcare needs of Lubbock, Texas, and surrounding areas.

The hospital, which is part of Ernest Health, provides specialized rehabilitation services to more than 1,100 children and adults annually who are recovering from or living with disabilities caused by injuries, illnesses, or chronic medical conditions. It offers the only pediatric inpatient rehabilitation program in the area, serving children and their families from outlying areas such as eastern New Mexico, the Texas panhandle, and the Permian Basin. With the additional beds, the hospital now is expected to treat about 2,000 patients every year.

In discussing the expansion, Craig Bragg, CEO of Trustpoint Rehabilitation Hospital, says an increased community demand for more rehabilitative services is due to a number of factors, including a fast-growing population in Lubbock County and an aging population.

“A detailed market analysis showed individuals leaving the Lubbock area and going to other states and areas within Texas to receive specialized post-acute services,” he says. “This can cause significant hardships on patients and their families emotionally and financially. We knew it was our responsibility to explore how we could best meet this community need.”

After careful research and consideration, the hospital’s and Ernest Health’s leadership teams decided upon a $4.5 million expansion of its existing facility to create an additional 33 beds. The therapy gym also was enlarged to 7,700 square feet of therapeutic space.

“We’re confident that we have the capacity to handle existing post-acute rehabilitative needs in the area, while still allowing for anticipated growth during the next decade,” Bragg says. “We were fastidious in our due diligence to determine the right number of beds needed now and long-term to best serve the community. This was necessary to allow us to continue to provide high-quality general and specialized rehabilitative care in pediatrics, spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, and strokes. We’ll continue to devote resources to treatments, technology, and staff training to provide the highest care available in the nation to our patients.”

Trustpoint Rehabilitation Hospital, which has served the Lubbock area since 2008, has twice been recognized in the Top 10 percent of inpatient rehabilitation facilities in the United States. The expansion has provided 119 additional jobs for the area, with 70 more planned within the next three years.

Read More

Ernest Health’s Cindy Tew to Speak at 2017 American Association for Respiratory Care Congress

Cindy Tew, Ernest Health’s Director of Clinical Programs and Resources, has been selected to present at the 2017 American Association for Respiratory Care Congress. At this event, Tew will present an Ernest Health initiative in nutrition management and administration for patients being weaned from ventilators in its long-term acute care hospitals.

The initiative, which won the 2017 Quality Achievement Award from the National Association of Long Term Hospitals,  explored specific nutritional indicators that could be tracked that might influence ventilator weaning. In particular, the initiative focused on finding if the level of protein provided to a ventilated patient had any effect on the success of weaning the patient off the ventilator.

The project was initiated by Tew and Anne Woodbury, registered dietitian nutritionist at Utah Valley Specialty Hospital, a member of Ernest Health.

Read More

Ernest Health’s Rehabilitation Hospitals Recognized among Top 10% in Nation

Thirteen Ernest Health rehabilitation hospitals have been acknowledged for providing nationally recognized rehabilitative care to its patients. The hospitals were ranked in the Top 10% of inpatient rehabilitation facilities nationwide for providing care that is patient-centered, effective, efficient and timely.

The hospitals were ranked from among 781 inpatient rehabilitation facilities nationwide by the Uniform Data System for Medical Rehabilitation (UDSMR). The UDSMR is a non-profit corporation that was developed with support from the U.S. Department of Education, National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. UDSMR maintains the world’s largest database for medical rehabilitation outcomes.

Ernest Health’s rehabilitation hospitals provide specialized rehabilitative services to patients who are recovering from disabilities caused by injuries, illnesses, or chronic medical conditions. This includes strokes, brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and amputations, along with illnesses such as cerebral palsy, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.

Ernest Health was founded in 2004 and provides rehabilitative and long-term acute care services through its hospitals located in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Montana, New Mexico, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, Utah and Wyoming. Each hospital is managed locally.

Read More

Northern Idaho Advanced Care Hospital – Bringing Nationally Recognized Healthcare to its Community

Northern Idaho Advanced Care Hospital has been recognized nationally for its respiratory failure care, recently becoming the 1st hospital in Idaho to earn The Joint Commission’s disease-specific certification for Respiratory Failure.

“Respiratory failure occurs when there isn’t enough oxygen passing from the lungs into the body’s bloodstream,” explains Dr. Dr. Kevin Strait, Medical Director of Northern Idaho Advanced Care Hospital. “Oxygen-rich blood is needed to help the body’s organs – such as the heart and brain – function properly. Respiratory failure also can occur if a patient’s lungs can’t remove carbon dioxide from the blood. Carbon dioxide is a waste gas that also can harm a body’s organs.”

Fortunately, the hospital staff is well prepared to treat respiratory failure.

“This certification is significant,” says Sandra Yule, Chief Executive Officer of Northern Idaho Advanced Care Hospital, “because it means that we’re providing the highest level of respiratory failure care available in the nation right here to patients in our own community.”

And for our patients, the right care can mean the difference between life and death.

Hundreds of patients are treated at Northern Idaho Advanced Care Hospital every year. The hospital, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this month, provides long-term acute and critical care services to patients throughout the Inland Northwest who are recovering from serious illnesses or injuries. Often these individuals need care for medically complex conditions such as trauma, infectious diseases, wound healing, cardiovascular disease, stroke, amputations, and – as already discussed – respiratory failure.

“Most people who need inpatient hospital services are admitted to an ‘acute care’ hospital for a relatively short amount of time,” Yule explains. “But the type of patients we treat – those with medically complex conditions – come to our hospital, which is called a long-term acute care hospital or LTACH, for continued care beyond their original hospital stay.”

At Northern Idaho Advanced Care Hospital, patients receive 24-hour nursing and respiratory care services (the hospital’s respiratory care services also are recognized nationally); speech, physical and occupational therapies; aquatic therapy; pain management; dysphagia management, ventilator weaning; and wound care. The hospital also offers a cardio/pulmonary recovery program.

A patient care team comprised of physicians, nurses, therapists, pharmacists, and other personnel work with a patient’s attending physician and other specialists to create a personalized plan that’s tailored to the patient’s needs.

“We feel that our patients recover more fully by using this comprehensive approach,” Yule says. “We want to do everything we can to help our patients to heal as completely as possible, providing them with hope and quality of life.”

The hospital, which is located at 600 Cecil in Post Falls, features all private patient rooms, and an 8-bed high-observation critical care unit. All patient rooms include cardiac monitoring equipment and mechanical ventilators. The hospital also features a 2,590-square-foot therapy gym with private therapy rooms and a heated aquatic therapy pool.

Read More

Utah Valley Specialty Hospital First in State to Earn National Accreditation

Bringing nationally recognized care to the local community

Utah Valley Specialty Hospital is the first hospital in the state to earn The Joint Commission’s disease-specific certification in Respiratory Failure. The hospital earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for Respiratory Failure after a rigorous on-site review last month.

“This certification is significant,” says Ezra Segura, Chief Executive Officer of Utah Valley Specialty Hospital, “because it means that we’re providing the highest level of respiratory failure care available in the nation right here to patients in our own community. It reflects our commitment to providing safe and effective care to our patients.”

Respiratory failure occurs when there isn’t enough oxygen passing from the lungs into the body’s bloodstream.

Different types of diseases can cause respiratory failure, including lung diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumonia, or cystic fibrosis. Respiratory failure also can be caused by conditions that affect the nerves and muscles that control breathing such as stroke, spinal cord injuries, and muscular dystrophy.

Certification through The Joint Commission’s Disease-Specific Care Program is voluntary and addresses three main areas:

  • Compliance with consensus-based national standards
  • Effective use of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines to manage and optimize care; and
  • An organized approach to performance measurement and improvement activities.

In addition to The Joint Commission’s respiratory failure certification, Utah Valley Specialty Hospital also is one of 700 nationwide – or 15 percent – that has earned the national Quality Respiratory Care Recognition from the American Association for Respiratory Care. The designation is given to facilities that meet strict safety and quality standards related in providing respiratory care.

“Through our services, we want to provide hope and quality of life to our community members who are experiencing debilitating events,” Segura says. “These certifications provide us with the framework to create a culture of excellence for patients in our community.”

The hospital provides hundreds of patients throughout Utah every year with long-term acute and critical care services. These patients, who are recovering from serious illnesses or injuries, often need care for medically complex conditions such as trauma, infectious diseases, wound healing, cardiovascular disease, stroke, amputations, and respiratory failure.

The hospital, which is located at 306 River Bend Lane in Provo, features all private patient rooms, and an 8-bed high-observation critical care unit. All patient rooms include cardiac monitoring equipment and mechanical ventilators. The hospital also features a 6,000-square-foot therapy gym with private treatment rooms.

Read More

Ernest Health and The University of Toledo Announce Groundbreaking for the Rehabilitation Hospital of Northwest Ohio

Ernest Health, Inc., and The University of Toledo announce the groundbreaking for the Rehabilitation Hospital of Northwest Ohio. The hospital will be constructed and operated by Ernest Health and located on the Health Science campus of The University of Toledo.

The new hospital, which will be known as the Rehabilitation Hospital of Northwest Ohio, will provide intensive physical rehabilitation services to patients recovering from strokes, brain and spinal cord injuries, and other impairments as a result of injuries or illness.

As an affiliate of The University of Toledo, the hospital will provide training opportunities for resident physicians of the university through a physical medicine and rehabilitation residency program and for students through clinical rotations for physical, occupational, speech therapy as well as nursing.

“We are excited to work with The University of Toledo and establish our first physical medicine and rehabilitation educational program. It’s been rewarding to collaborate with the university’s leadership to meet this community need.” said Angie Anderson, senior vice president of development for Ernest Health.
Ernest Health currently operates 23 post-acute care hospitals, including 15 rehabilitation hospitals that have consistently been recognized as being in the top 10 percent of inpatient rehabilitation hospitals nationwide for care that is patient-centered, effective, efficient and timely. The national ranking is provided by the Uniform Data System for Medical Rehabilitation (UDSMR), a not-for-profit corporation that was developed with support from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, a component of the U.S Department of Education.

“We have been supported and warmly welcomed by the University of Toledo and other healthcare and community leaders,” says Darby Brockette, CEO of Ernest Health. “We consider it a privilege to be able to serve the area and look forward to becoming an active member of the community.”

As part of the agreement between the two organizations, the Rehabilitation Hospital of Northwest Ohio will absorb operations of inpatient rehabilitative services currently offered through the medical center. There will be no interruption of services, and current staff can retain employment with the university or apply for positions at the new hospital. Officials estimate approximately 120 jobs will be created.

“This collaboration is an important step forward,” says Dr. Cooper, senior vice president for clinical affairs and dean of the College of Medicine and Life Sciences, “and signifies the value we can create for our community when we bring together the University’s assets with forward-thinking, well run community partners.”

Ernest Health will break ground on the 49,000-square foot facility at 10 a.m., May 12 during a ceremony on the site located at 1445 West Medical Loop. The public is invited to attend.

“I am pleased to welcome Ernest Health and the Rehabilitation Hospital of Northwest Ohio to Toledo. Our community will only be strengthened by the care and support given to Toledo residents by this hospital. Welcome to Toledo and thank you for enhancing our community,” said Mayor Paula Hicks-Hudson.

Read More

Ernest Health Hospitals Recognized Among Top 10 Percent of Rehabilitation Facilities in United States

Cited for care that is effective, efficient, timely and patient-centered

Eleven Ernest Health hospitals recently were ranked in the top 10 percent of inpatient rehabilitation facilities in the United States.

Ernest Health provides inpatient and outpatient physical rehabilitation services through 14 hospitals located in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, New Mexico, South Carolina, Texas, Utah and Wyoming. Each hospital is managed locally to best meet the needs of each community.

The national ranking was provided by the Uniform Data System for Medical Rehabilitation (UDSMR), a not-for-profit corporation that was developed with support from the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, a component of the U.S Department of Education. The UDSMR ranks rehabilitation facilities based upon care that is patient-centered, effective, efficient, and timely. Ernest Health’s hospitals were ranked this past year out of 783 inpatient rehabilitation facilities nationwide.

UDSMR administers the world’s largest medical rehabilitation database, providing common language and measurement tools to monitor patient results. The data used for the most current ranking was based on 12 months of information from 2014 from both Medicare and non-Medicare patients. The results were combined and weighted into a score, and each facility was then assigned a percentile rank.

“It’s an honor to have our hospitals recognized nationally as leaders in rehabilitative care,” says Darby Brockette, CEO of Ernest Health. “For many, this is a recurring accomplishment. I believe it’s a reflection of the serious commitment of our employees and local leadership to the communities they serve. They continually strive to provide high quality rehabilitative care to patients and family members.”

Brockette says that the staffs’ efforts not only raise the level of care in their local communities, but nationwide as well.

“Through UDSMR, our hospitals collaborate with peers across the United States to share information and establish best practices,” Darby says. “This elevates the level of rehabilitative care for everyone. It’s a privilege to work alongside such a dedicated and committed group of health care professionals.”

Ernest Health was founded in 2004 and has been providing specialized rehabilitative services to patients since 2005, when the first hospitals opened. Ernest Health’s rehabilitation hospitals treat thousands of patients every year who are recovering from disabilities caused by injuries or illnesses, such as strokes, orthopedic, brain and spinal cord injuries. The hospitals also treat individuals with chronic illnesses such as cerebral palsy, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), multiple sclerosis, or Parkinson’s disease.

Read More

Passionate, patient caregivers.

Ken Summers, of Johnstown, Colorado gives testimony to Ernest Health’s true spirit of being passionate, patient caregivers.

“It’s a very humbling experience when you face a health crisis to the extent that I have I am so grateful for everyone – from the physicians to the housekeeping staff to maintenance. These individuals, workers, became great friends and acquaintances and were vital to my recovery.”

Read More