Showing all Releases for 2016

  • Cotton O’Neil Digestive Health Center’s Endoscopy Unit Recognized by ASGE for Quality and Safety as Part of Its Endoscopy Unit Recognition Program

    Wednesday December 21, 2016

    The American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) has recognized Cotton O’Neil Digestive Health Center’s Endoscopy Center as part of its program specifically dedicated to promoting quality in endoscopy in all settings where it is practiced in the United States. The certification came in July and a celebration for staff was held on Dec. 13 at the Digestive Health Center.

    The ASGE Endoscopy Unit Recognition Program (EURP) honors endoscopy units that have demonstrated a commitment to patient safety and quality in endoscopy as evidenced by meeting the program’s rigorous criteria. These include following the ASGE guidelines on privileging, quality assurance, endoscopic reprocessing, CDC infection control guidelines and ensuring endoscopy staff competency. To date, more than 500 endoscopy units have been recognized by ASGE. There are only three EURP certified units in the state of Kansas. The other two units are in Kansas City.

    “We are proud to acknowledge these endoscopy units for their commitment to promoting the highest standards of safety and quality,” said Glenn Eisen, MD, FASGE, Chair, ASGE Quality Assurance in Endoscopy Committee. “By ensuring infection control principles are adhered to, the competency of staff is continually assessed, and patient satisfaction is monitored, ASGE-recognized units address the cornerstones that inspire the public’s confidence in endoscopy, a life-saving technology.”

    To be recognized by ASGE, a unit, through a peer-reviewed application process, must attest to the continued competence of all staff relative to their roles, demonstrate the adoption of unit policies specific to ongoing assessment of performance relative to key quality indicators, and attest that the unit has an established infrastructure and personnel dedicated to infection control and prevention. The program is applicable to all settings in the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands where endoscopy is practiced, including office-based endoscopy units, hospital-based endoscopy units, and stand-alone ambulatory endoscopy or surgery centers.

    “We have a very experienced and loyal staff who are dedicated to excellent patient care,” said Robert Ricci, MD, Medical Director, Cotton O’Neil Digestive Health Center. “It is rewarding to be part of such a great team.”

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  • Cotton O’Neil Neuro & Spine Center Now Open and Delivering Comprehensive Coordinated Spine Care

    Monday December 5, 2016

    The Cotton O’Neil Neuro & Spine Center is now open and seeing patients on the first floor (main level) in the Cotton O’Neil Kanza Park building, located at 2660 S.W. Third St., north of Sixth and MacVicar.  

    Advanced, comprehensive spine care is now available at one convenient location. This new center includes five board-certified spine surgeons, a neurologist, specially trained advanced practice providers, physical therapy located on the same floor at Cotton O’Neil Physical, Occupational & Speech Therapy, and onsite digital X-ray, with space for future MRI imaging. Surgical suites are located in the lower level of the building at Stormont Vail Single Day Surgery.

    A care manager at the Neuro & Spine Center will coordinate all aspects of a customized care plan with the patient and their primary care physician.

    “Patients with neck and back pain are best served by comprehensive evidence-based protocols,” said Matthew Wills, M.D., medical director for the center.

    The 10,000 square foot space offers beautiful views and has easy access from I-70. Parking and entrance for this service is on the west side of the building.

    Talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this specialty center.

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  • Stormont Vail Hospital Receives National Recognition for Excellence in Financial Interactions with Patients

    Tuesday November 22, 2016

    Stormont Vail Hospital has achieved recognition as an Adopter of the Healthcare Financial Management Association’s (HFMA) Patient Financial Communications Best Practices®. As a best practices adopter, Stormont Vail Hospital demonstrated that it follows nearly 100 best practices covering all aspects of financial interactions that take place in a variety of care settings.

    “In a time when patients are paying more out-of-pocket for their health care, the financial conversations we have with patients have never been more important,” said Kevin Han, Stormont Vail Health vice president & Chief Financial Officer. “We have taken steps to ensure that patients are treated with compassion and respect in financial matters, and this recognition confirms that.”

    “When people are dealing with health issues, they should be focusing on their health, not trying to decipher confusing financial information,” said HFMA president and CEO Joseph J. Fifer. “Stormont Vail Hospital has demonstrated its commitment to ensuring that patients have a good experience when it comes to the financial aspects of their care.”

    Stormont Vail Hospital joins a select group of hospitals, health systems and physician practices that have received this first-of-its-kind, national recognition. A blue-ribbon task force developed these best practices to help improve communication between health care providers and consumers about financial matters. The task force included representatives from major industry groups, including the American Hospital Association, America’s Health Insurance Plans, the American Academy of Family Physicians, and the National Patient Advocate Foundation, among others. The best practices are part of HFMA’s Healthcare Dollars & Sense® initiative. More information is available at hfma.org/dollars.

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  • Cotton O'Neil Emporia Patient Thankful for Quick-Thinking Angels Who Helped Save Her Life During a Severe Allergic Reaction

    Tuesday November 22, 2016

    Emporia resident Roberta Jacobs has a lot to be thankful for this season after a couple of quick-thinking and calm individuals came to her aid after she suffered a severe allergic reaction to an antibiotic she took just ten minutes before.

    In early November, Jacobs went to her see her physician, Dr. David Kemp, at the Cotton O’Neil Emporia clinic, hoping to find some relief from an infection she developed after a recent surgery. After her exam and having no known allergies to any antibiotics, Jacobs was prescribed an antibiotic called Levaquin. Jacobs left the clinic, stopped by the pharmacy to get the prescription filled, then headed home to change clothes before leaving again for work. As Jacobs ran out the door, she took one of the prescribed pills and drove to the Lyon County Bank to make a deposit. Within ten minutes of taking the medication, Jacobs started to notice something wasn’t right. She started coughing and getting itchy and remembers the bank teller asking if she was all right. Jacobs said she was, but as she drove away from the bank her symptoms started to get worse. She quickly pulled over into the Reebles grocery store parking lot and placed a call to the Cotton O’Neil Emporia clinic hoping to get her medication changed. She reached Susan Huntsinger, RN, Dr. Kemp’s nurse.

    “Roberta called me and was having trouble breathing and said her tongue was starting to swell,” said Huntsinger. “I knew right away it was an allergic reaction.”

    “My ears started to burn and my tongue started to swell and I just felt really funny,” Jacobs remembers. “I knew something was wrong, and then I was having trouble breathing, and I couldn’t communicate very well. I felt like a fish out of water and everything was happening so fast.”

    As Jacobs struggled to speak with Huntsinger, a passerby came up to Jacob’s car window and noticed she was in trouble.

    “A woman came up to my car and asked if there was anything she could do to help me,” said Jacobs. “I immediately handed her the phone.”

    The passerby stayed on the line with Huntsinger and helped Jacobs get the urgent care she needed.

    “I stayed on the phone with the passerby and was able to find out what color car Roberta was in, said Huntsinger.  “I was able to relay that information about her vehicle and where she was parked to dispatch.”

    The EMTs who came to Jacob’s aid worked quickly to get her stable and transfer her on to Newman Regional Health. After a few hours at the hospital, Jacobs was released and is now feeling much better.

    “I feel like I have a few angels out there,” said Jacobs. “I am very thankful for everyone who helped save my life.”

    Jacobs still does not know who the mystery woman was who stopped to help her in the grocery store parking lot, but she would love to be reunited with her angel someday to say thank you in person.

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  • Stormont Vail Health Nurses Recognized as Nurses of the Year by the March of Dimes’ Kansas and Greater Kansas City Chapter

    Tuesday November 15, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Michelle Clark-Galvan, BSN, RN, CCRN, Critical Care, and Lisa Quilling, BSN, RN, CEN, TCRN, Emergency, were named Nurses of the Year in the March of Dimes’ Kansas and Greater Kansas City Chapter 2016 recognition program.

    Michelle received the honor in the Critical Care category, and Quilling received the award in the Emergency/Transport category.

    Michelle started working at Stormont Vail Health as a surgical tech in 2003 and became a nurse in 2009. Lisa has been employed by Stormont Vail Health since 2012 and has worked in the Emergency Department since 2013.

    In all, six Stormont Vail Health nurses were finalists in the annual recognition program that recognizes and honors distinguished nurses for their outstanding contributions. Nurses can be nominated by patients, friends and families, and colleagues, and then finalists are selected.

    The Nurse of the Year Awards were announced Oct. 29 at an awards dinner in Kansas City.

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  • Ryan Tomlins, M.D., Joins Cotton O'Neil as a Non-Operative Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Physician

    Monday November 14, 2016

    Ryan Tomlins, M.D., has a passion for both sports and health care. He was a student athlete, playing multiple sports at several levels, including basketball for Washburn University. He followed in the footsteps of fellow family members with medical careers by choosing to pursue sports medicine. Dr. Tomlins respects the amount of dedication and time athletes put into their sport, and he understands that recovering from a sports injury takes the right course of treatment to get athletes back in the game as soon as possible.

    “Pain from orthopedic issues and injuries in sports medicine can be debilitating,” said Tomlins. “Treating a patient and seeing them return to what they love makes it worth coming to work every day.”

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Dr. Tomlins has joined our medical team and will practice as a non-operative orthopedics and sports medicine physician. His practice will be located at Cotton O’Neil Kanza Park, 2660 S.W. Third St. in Topeka.             

    Dr. Tomlins received his medical degree at American University of the Caribbean, St. Maarten, Lesser Antilles NA, in 2009. He completed a family medicine residency in 2012 at Greenville Health System, Greenville, South Carolina. He completed a primary care sports medicine fellowship in 2013 at Andrews Sports Medicine Institute, Birmingham, Alabama.

    Dr. Tomlins and his wife, Erin, have two children, Grayson, age 3, and Avery, age 20 months. Dr. Tomlins enjoys playing golf, running and participating in triathlons.

    Dr. Tomlins is accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call (785) 270-8880. 

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  • Signing Ceremony for Stormont Vail Health Joining U.S. Army’s Partnering for Youth Success Program

    Thursday November 10, 2016

    Members of the media are invited to Stormont Vail Health’s formal signing ceremony to become a partner in the U.S. Army’s Partnering for Youth Success (PaYS) program at 8 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 11, at the Maner Conference Center, Capitol Plaza Hotel.

    The ceremony will feature representatives from Stormont Vail Health, the U.S. Army, the Topeka West JROTC program, and city officials.

    If you would like to set up an interview at the symposium, please contact Nancy Burkhardt, director of Marketing & Communications, at (785) 354-6927 or nburkhar@stormontvail.org.

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  • Stormont Vail Health Joining U.S. Army's Partnership for Youth Success Program

    Tuesday November 1, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce it will be signing a formal agreement with the U.S. Army to participate in the U.S. Army’s Partnership for Youth Success (PaYS) program at 8 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 11, at the Maner Conference Center, Capitol Plaza Hotel.

    The ceremony, timed to coincide with Veterans Day, will feature representatives from Stormont Vail Health, the U.S. Army, the Topeka West JROTC program, and city officials.

    The PaYS program is a partnership between the U.S. Army and a cross section of organizations, corporations, companies and public sector agencies. The program provides America’s youth with an opportunity to serve their country while they prepare for their future. PaYS partners guarantee soldiers an interview and possible employment after their Army service is completed.

    “This is a great opportunity for our organization to not only recruit talented, experienced employees but also for the Army to help its soldiers transition after their service is done,” said Randy Peterson, president and CEO of Stormont Vail Health.

    Bernie Becker, vice president and chief human resources officer, agreed.

    “It’s an honor to be able to partner with those who have selflessly served our country,” Becker said. “They bring a wide range of valuable knowledge and training that will only make us better as a health care family. As a U.S. Army veteran, I know firsthand that the men and women who join the Stormont Vail team after Army service already possess the character traits and leadership skills that are critical to our success.”

    The signing will kick off Stormont Vail Health’s Trauma Symposium, now in its 11th year. The symposium this year features a number of speakers from the Army’s medical and medical services branches.

    For more information about the PaYS program, visit www.armypays.com.

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  • Vascular Neurology Physician Hartej Singh Sethi, M.D., M.S., Joins Cotton O’Neil Clinic

    Monday October 31, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Hartej Singh Sethi, M.D., M.S, has joined our medical team and will practice as a vascular neurology physician. His practice will be located at Cotton O’Neil Kanza Park, 2660 SW Third St. in Topeka.

    Dr. Sethi comes from a family of physicians and grew up in an environment where medicine was considered normal dinner conversation. He was always interested in pursuing medicine as his career.

    “Neurology is one of the most challenging branches of medicine, and I believe we will see several breakthroughs in neurological treatment during the course of my career,” said Dr. Sethi. “I am passionate about stroke care. There is a dire need to focus on stroke prevention which starts with education.”

    Dr. Sethi received his medical degree at the Government Medical College and Rajindra Hospital, Patiala, India, in 2003. He completed a neurology residency at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, Arkansas, in 2010. At the same time that he was a pursing his residency, Dr. Sethi also completed a Master in Physiology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, Arkansas.

    Dr. Sethi believes that the patient should be at the forefront of decision-making regarding treatment options. He tries to make sure his patients understand their disease and its implications. He believes patient education is a precursor to a good outcome.

    He is married to a family medicine physician in town, and he and his wife enjoy spending time with their children, ages 3 and 6, and being involved in their activities. Dr. Sethi says he spends a lot of time playing kitchen set with his daughter and enjoys the most delicious coffee that she pretends to make. Dr. Sethi also enjoys playing soccer with his son, as well as running and reading.

    Dr. Sethi is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this vascular neurology physician.

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  • Maternal Fetal Medicine Physician Pamela Grant, M.D., Joins Stormont Vail Health

    Monday October 31, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Pamela Grant, M.D., has joined our medical team and is practicing as a maternal fetal medicine physician. Her practice is located in the Stormont Vail Hospital at 1500 S.W. 10th Ave. in Topeka.

    Dr. Grant received her medical degree at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine, Kansas City, Missouri, in 1989. She completed an obstetrics and gynecology residency at St. Johns Ramsey Hospital (now Regions Hospital), St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1993. She completed a fellowship in maternal fetal medicine at the University of Cincinnati Hospitals and Clinics, Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1995.

    Before joining Stormont Vail Health, Dr. Grant practiced at St. Vincent’s Hospital, Green Bay, Wisconsin. She is a member of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the Society of Maternal Fetal Medicine and the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine.

    Dr. Grant is a pet therapy volunteer and also a volunteer with the Paws to Read program and serves on an Alliance of Therapy Dogs certified team.

    To schedule an appointment, talk to your obstetrics and gynecology provider about a referral to this specialty physician.

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  • Invite to Media: Stormont Vail Health Neonatal Intensive Care to celebrate Halloween with special costumes

    Friday October 28, 2016

    Join us today, Friday, Oct. 28, from 2:30-3 p.m., as the NICU Family Support group, in cooperation with the March of Dimes and MJ’s Memories, celebrates Halloween by giving out specialized Halloween costumes for Stormont Vail Health Neonatal Intensive Care patients. Each family will get to pick a costume for their baby and will get a special Halloween photo.

    According to the March of Dimes, prematurity is the number one killer of babies in the United States. The Neonatal Intensive Care provides care for newborns who need intensive, specialized care. Often these babies were born premature, under weight or as a set of multiples. The Neonatal Intensive Care cares for babies as early as 24 weeks gestation and newborns with life-threatening illnesses.

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  • Family Medicine Physician Priti Duggal, M.D., Became a Physician to Help Make a Healthier Community: She Joins Cotton O’Neil Clinic

    Monday October 24, 2016

    Priti Duggal, M.D., became a physician to help make a healthier community through modern, evidence-based medicine. She is passionate about being part of patients’ lives through all ages. She takes time listening to her patients, discusses the issues at hand with them and involves them in the decision-making process while giving her expert medical opinion.

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Dr. Duggal has joined our medical team and will practice as a family medicine physician. Her practice will be located at 823 S.W. Mulvane St. in Topeka.

    She received her medical degree at the Government Medical College and Rajindra Hospital, Patiala, India, in 2003. She completed a family medicine residency in 2010 at Area Health Education Center, Pine Bluff, Arkansas.

    Dr. Duggal is married to a vascular neurologist in Topeka. She and her husband enjoy spending time with their children, ages 3 and 6, and being involved in their activities. Dr. Duggal likes cooking, cycling and traveling with her family.

    Dr. Duggal is accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call Health Connections at (785) 354-5225.

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  • Internal Medicine Physician Ferdinand G. Pampolina, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil Clinic

    Tuesday October 18, 2016

    Ferdinand G. Pampolina, M.D., believes a patient-doctor relationship is built on trust and a team approach. Dr. Pampolina’s family had an influence in his decision to go into medicine. His mother was a nurse and his uncle a physician. Dr. Pampolina wanted to find a career that would allow him to make a difference, and he wanted to help the population with the most need.

    “My patients bestow their trust in me,” said Dr. Pampolina. “I want to be deserving of that trust. I am aware of the tremendous responsibility that trust is asking of me.”

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Dr. Pampolina has joined our medical team and will practice as an internal medicine physician. His practice will be located at 909 S.W. Mulvane St. in Topeka.

    Dr. Pampolina’s patients describe him as thorough, friendly, systematic, and non-judgmental. He is known for his beside manner and respect for his patient’s time.

    He received his medical degree at the University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines, in 1985. He completed an obstetrics and gynecology residency in 1993 at Rizal Medicine Center, Manila, Philippines. He completed an internal medicine residency in 1998 at Brookdale University Hospital and Medicine Center, Brooklyn, New York. 

    He enjoys working on cars and spending time with his wife of 25 years, and he is extremely proud of his three beautiful daughters. He describes himself as a “foodie” and supports Kansas City Royals baseball, Kansas City Chiefs football and follows the sport of boxing. 

    Dr. Pampolina is accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call Health Connections at (785) 354-5225.

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  • UPDATE--Cotton O’Neil Announces Change to Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at Cotton O’Neil North location

    Thursday October 13, 2016

    Cotton O’Neil, a division of Stormont Vail Health, has announced that the scheduled Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at Cotton O’Neil North will be open to anyone 19 years and older.

    Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at Cotton O’Neil North will be held Saturday, Oct. 22 and Sunday, Oct. 23 from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. This flu shot clinic is for anyone ages 19 years of age and older – regardless if you are a Cotton O’Neil patient or not. Cotton O’Neil North is located at 4505 N.W. Fielding Road. Enter on the lower level Express Care side of the building and follow posted signs.  

    There are many opportunities for Cotton O’Neil patients only to obtain a flu shot. Here is a list of all the flu shot clinics.

    Drive-Thru Flu Shot Clinic will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 18, 25, and Nov. 1, 2016. Cotton O’Neil patients 19 years of age and older should go to the Stormont Vail Surgery parking, located at the corner of 10th and Garfield Ave., for their vaccination.

    Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at Cotton O’Neil Pediatrics Gage will be held Wednesday, Oct. 19 and 26 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. These flu shot clinics are for Cotton O’Neil patients ages 6 months and older. Vaccines For Children (VFC) patients are also welcome to attend this clinic. Cotton O’Neil Pediatrics Gage is located at 4100 S.W. 15th St.

    Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at the HealthWise Clinic will be held every Tuesday and Thursday in October 2016, from 8 a.m. to noon. These flu shot clinics are for Cotton O’Neil patients ages 6 months and older. The HealthWise Clinic is located in the Stormont Vail Retail Pharmacy building, 2252 S.W. 10th Ave.

    Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at Stormont Vail Retail Pharmacy will be held every Wednesday in October 2016, from 8 a.m. to noon. These flu shot clinics are for Cotton O’Neil patients ages 19 years of age and older. Stormont Vail Retail Pharmacy is located at 2252 S.W. 10th Ave.

    The seasonal flu vaccine is especially important for pregnant women, people 65 years of age and older, and others with chronic illnesses such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease and lung disease. People with chronic illnesses may have an increased chance of developing pneumonia as a result of getting the flu. Those who may have close contact with high-risk individuals including infants should also be vaccinated. That might include: adults or children living with or caring for people at high-risk of developing complications.

    No appointment is needed to participate in any of these clinics. Consent forms in English and Spanish are available at stormontvail.org/flu and may be completed and brought to the seasonal flu shot clinic to save time.

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  • Family Medicine Physician Lindsey Westberg, M.D., FAAFP, Joins Cotton O’Neil Manhattan Clinic

    Tuesday October 11, 2016

    Lindsey Westberg, M.D. has been a part of the Little Apple community for many years. She graduated from Manhattan High School and has spent nearly two years back in the town she calls home. For the families she serves, she has one common goal: to focus on delivering outstanding care to multiple generations of Manhattanites.

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Dr. Westberg has joined our medical team and will practice as a family medicine physician. Her practice will be located at Cotton O’Neil Manhattan, 1133 College Ave., Suite E-110, in Manhattan.

    “I really enjoy seeing multi-generational families,” said Dr. Westberg. “Caring for babies, children, parents and grandparents is fulfilling, and I am invested in the families I see. It is why I went into family medicine.”

    Dr. Westberg’s patients describe her as caring, empathetic, honest and thorough. The stories of their lives become her stories.

    She received her medical degree at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, Kansas, in 2008. She completed a family medicine residency in 2011 at St. Vincent’s Family Medicine Residency, Jacksonville, Florida.  

    Dr. Westberg is a fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians (FAAFP) and a member of the Kansas Academy of Family Physicians. She enjoys running, reading and being outdoors. 

    Dr. Westberg is accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call Health Connections at (785) 354-5225.

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  • Stormont Vail Foundation Supports Nursing Education

    Tuesday October 4, 2016

    The Stormont Vail Foundation was pleased to fund nursing scholarships totaling $69,900 for 83 students at the Baker University School of Nursing, Stormont Vail Campus, for the fall 2016 semester.  Congratulations to the following nursing students who were awarded scholarship assistance.

    Avis Van Lew Nursing Scholarship
    Jessica Abendroth, Carbondale, Kansas
    Rebecca Brown, Topeka, Kansas

    Blanche Bryden Nursing Scholarship
    Heidi Hayen, Topeka, Kansas

    Caring Hearts Nursing Scholarship
    Chase Winter, Augusta, Kansas

    Carol Perry-Lumb Nursing Scholarship          
    Tanner Mihesuah, Flagstaff, Arizona

    Carson Family Nursing Scholarship
    Kayla Bales, Muscotah, Kansas              

    Christ/Wolff Nursing Scholarship
    LaTeka Allen, Overland Park, Kansas  
    Michelle Abendroth, Carbondale, Kansas
    Andrea Barton, Manhattan, Kansas
    Alisa Becker, McPherson, Kansas
    Jillian Benson, Lenexa, Kansas
    Abigail Bundy, Olathe, Kansas
    Chelsee Burnside, Bigelow, Arkansas
    Brenna Cook, Leawood, Kansas           
    Amanda Gromer, Lenexa, Kansas
    Lydia Hardin, Olathe, Kansas
    Michelle Haug, Baileyville, Kansas
    Heidi Hayen, Topeka, Kansas
    Molly Hiett, Leawood, Kansas
    Stephanie Hinchey, DeSoto, Kansas
    Cassidy Hulsing, Baileyville, Kansas
    Desiree Martinez, Queens, New York
    Andreas Munk, Overland Park, Kansas
    Wakako Nakura, Nagoya, Japan
    Carrie Pierpont, Lecompton, Kansas
    Dylan Price, Wellsville, Kansas
    Kristen Queen, Manhattan, Kansas
    Erica Ray, Topeka, Kansas
    Sarah Reedy, McPherson, Kansas
    Jacey Rottinghaus, Seneca, Kansas
    LaTasha Scales, Hutchinson, Kansas
    Maceyn Schreiber, Stafford, Kansas    
    Breton Sloop, Topeka, Kansas
    Heather Smith, Topeka, Kansas
    Bailey Snyder, Manhattan, Kansas
    Anthony Stapleton, Topeka, Kansas
    Christina Taylor, McPherson, Kansas
    Jeris Thomas, Topeka, Kansas
    Tori Tomlinson, Osage City, Kansas
    Lisa Tran, Wichita, Kansas
    Samantha Twenhafel, Nortonville, Kansas
    Sydney Wedel, Minneapolis, Kansas
    Chase Winter, Augusta, Kansas
    Joshua Witt, Topeka, Kansas

    Conkling-Hussey Nursing Scholarship             
    Regina Georgeson, Topeka, Kansas
    Kaysha Green, Topeka, Kansas

    Cotton O’Neil Clinic 20th Anniversary Nursing Scholarship
    Ilina Kay, Forest Hill, New York

    Dean Kathleen L. Harr Nursing Scholarship
    Ilina Kay, Forest Hills, New York                                                     

    Emery A. Dains Nursing Scholarship
    Hunter Hicks, Florence, Oregon

    Klemmer Endowed Nursing Scholarship
    Lauren Burks, Valley Center, Kansas

    Lawrence Gabel Nursing Scholarship
    Hunter Hicks, Florence, Oregon

    Marjorie Groll Nursing Scholarship
    Addison Ellis, Lawrence, Kansas
    Alexis Hartzog, Wichita, Kansas
    McKenzie Hartzog, Wichita, Kansas

    Dr. Charles S. & Doris F. Joss Nursing Scholarship
    Frankie Farrant, Meriden, Kansas
    Baleigh Haag, Wichita, Kansas
    Morgan Hofmeister, Overland Park, Kansas

    Kohl’s Family Nursing Scholarship
    Alisa Becker, McPherson, Kansas

    June D. Billingham Nursing Scholarship
    Gabrielle Betsch, Olathe, Kansas                                                         

    Mary B. Storey Medcalf Nursing Scholarship
    Katelynn Hoobler, Horton, Kansas      

    Schane/Winans Nursing Scholarship
    Ryan Debus, Meriden, Kansas

    Security Benefit Group Nursing Scholarship
    Katelynn Hoobler, Horton, Kansas

    Stormont Vail Health Auxiliary Nursing Scholarship
    Kelli Bauman, Sabetha, Kansas

    Stormont Vail Foundation Nursing Scholarship
    Jamie Crockett, Merrillville, Indiana
    Rachel Dobbins, Kansas City, Missouri
    Taylor Dunagan, Tucson, Arizona
    Abbigail Eisenhut, Topeka, Kansas
    Lydia Hardin, Olathe, Kansas
    Lakisha Irwin, Raytown, Missouri
    Julie Johnson, Renton, Washington
    Savannah Keller, Manhattan, Kansas
    Taylor Knoth, Salina, Kansas
    Amanda Lasswell, St. Marys, Kansas
    Megan Lee, Topeka, Kansas
    Sarah Ludwig-Eatmon, Topeka, Kansas
    Cambry Lynch, Lawrence, Kansas
    Chelsey Mann, St. Joseph, Missouri
    Kaitlin McAlister, Perry, Kansas
    Jessica McKenzie, Lawrence, Kansas
    Allyson Moore, Lenexa, Kansas
    Jamesha Murry, Lawrence, Kansas
    Karen Nissen, Lawrence, Kansas
    Riley Obetz, Overland Park, Kansas
    Halston Pattison, Overland Park, Kansas
    DaySean Phelps, Topeka, Kansas
    Monrattana Phiouphilavanh, Ottawa, Kansas
    Grace Sexton, Abilene, Kansas
    Hailey Stapleton, Topeka, Kansas

    30th Anniversary Nursing Scholarship
    Carrie Pierpont, Lecompton, Kansas

    Woman’s Club Nursing Scholarship
    Megan Srna, Manhattan, Kansas
    Erinn Steere, Topeka, Kansas

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  • Cotton O’Neil Announces Annual Flu Shot Clinics

    Friday September 30, 2016

    Cotton O’Neil, a division of Stormont Vail Health, has scheduled many opportunities for Cotton O’Neil patients to obtain a flu shot. Here is a list of all the flu shot clinics.

    Drive-Thru Flu Shot Clinic will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 18, 25, and Nov. 1, 2016. Cotton O’Neil patients 19 years of age and older should go to the Stormont Vail Surgery parking, located at the corner of 10th and Garfield Ave. for their vaccination.

    Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at Cotton O’Neil Pediatrics Gage will be held Wednesday, Oct. 19 and 26 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. These flu shot clinics are for Cotton O’Neil patients ages 6 months and older. Vaccines For Children (VFC) patients are also welcome to attend this clinic. Cotton O’Neil Pediatrics Gage is located at 4100 S.W. 15th St. 

    Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at Cotton O’Neil North will be held Saturday, Oct. 22 and Sunday, Oct. 23 from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. These flu shot clinics are for Cotton O’Neil patients ages 19 years of age and older. Cotton O’Neil North is located at 4505 N.W. Fielding Road. Enter on the lower level Express Care side of the building and follow posted signs.

    Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at the HealthWise Clinic will be held every Tuesday and Thursday in October 2016, from 8 a.m. to noon. These flu shot clinics are for Cotton O’Neil patients ages 6 months and older. The HealthWise Clinic is located in the Stormont Vail Retail Pharmacy building, 2252 S.W. 10th Ave.

    Walk-in Flu Shot Clinic at Stormont Vail Retail Pharmacy will be held every Wednesday in October 2016, from 8 a.m. to noon. These flu shot clinics are for Cotton O’Neil patients ages 19 years of age and older. Stormont Vail Retail Pharmacy is located at 2252 S.W. 10th Ave.

    The seasonal flu vaccine is especially important for pregnant women, people 65 years of age and older, and others with chronic illnesses such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease and lung disease. People with chronic illnesses may have an increased chance of developing pneumonia as a result of getting the flu. Those who may have close contact with high-risk individuals including infants should also be vaccinated. That might include: adults or children living with or caring for people at high-risk of developing complications.

    No appointment is needed to participate in any of these clinics, but you must be a Cotton O’Neil patient.

    Consent forms in English and Spanish are available at stormontvail.org/flu and may be completed and brought to the seasonal flu shot clinic to save time.

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  • Stormont Vail Health Welcome Baby Jubilee: Invite to Media

    Thursday September 29, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health will host an open house from 6 to 8 p.m. tonight for expecting moms and women thinking about having a baby. Moms-to-be will have the opportunity to speak with Stormont Vail professionals, including Birthplace staff who will provide information on the Birthplace, Breastfeeding Clinic, Neonatal Intensive Care (NIC), Maternal Fetal Medicine (MFM), pediatric services and delivery services available at Stormont Vail Health.

    Tours of the Birthplace, Breastfeeding Clinic, NIC and MFM will be available. Local individuals and organizations will be available to discuss child and baby services offered in the community. Expectant moms may register to win either a Medela breast pump or a $250 gift card to Babies”R”Us along with a variety of other prizes.

    Dads, grandparents, partners and family who will spend time with the baby are welcome to attend and will have the opportunity to get their Tdap vaccination. Tdap is a vaccination that prevents tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis and is highly recommended for anyone who will be in the presence of a newborn.

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  • Cotton O’Neil Cancer Center to Recognize Childhood Cancer Awareness Month Activities

    Monday September 26, 2016

    September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Join us on Tuesday, Sept. 27, from 9-11 a.m., as pediatric cancer patients will brighten the entrance to the Cotton O’Neil Cancer Center with chalk art and also serve lemonade to patients and families to increase awareness of childhood cancer.

    According to the American Cancer Society, cancer is the second leading cause of death in children aged 1 to 14 (after accidents). About 1,250 children younger than 15 years old are expected to die from cancer in 2016. 

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  • Topeka RoadRunners Partner with Stormont Vail Health to Present Diabetes Awareness Night

    Thursday September 22, 2016

    The Topeka RoadRunners, in partnership with Stormont Vail Health, announced today that Diabetes Awareness Night will be Saturday, Oct. 15 at the Kansas ExpoCentre when the RoadRunners host the Springfield Jr. Blues in a North American Hockey League game.

    RoadRunners General Manager Joe Clark said the event is designed to help raise awareness of both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.

    “This is a great opportunity for our community to come together and help battle diabetes, as well as educate people about the disease,” said Clark. “With the help of Stormont Vail and Cotton O’Neil Diabetes & Endocrinology, we plan on this being a big night for everyone involved.”

    Cotton O'Neil Diabetes & Endocrinology patients and their families can get a voucher for reduced admission at their next patient visit or by visiting the event page on Facebook. With this voucher, ticket pricing is $5 for adults and children 12 and under will be admitted free.

    “We are very proud to partner with the RoadRunners for this event. Every year, 1.4 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes. Recognizing the symptoms of diabetes and receiving treatment is vital to a person’s wellness. Cotton O’Neil Diabetes & Endocrinology physicians and staff value your wellness and are trained to care for patients of all ages affected with diabetes, ” Katie Barger, M.D. said.

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  • Stormont Vail Health to Close Two Regional Clinics

    Thursday September 15, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health announced today plans to close two regional clinics. Cotton O’Neil Lyndon will close Dec. 31, 2016, and Cotton O’Neil Alma will close Jan. 31, 2017.

    “Stormont Vail Health and Cotton O’Neil have been proud members of these communities for many years,” said Deb Yocum, vice president and clinical operations officer. “And while we may not have a physical clinic in those towns, the care of our patients there remains our priority.”

    Clinic staff will work with current patients in both locations to transfer their care to other clinic locations including Osage, Carbondale and Lebo for patients at the Lyndon Clinic; and Wamego, Rossville and Manhattan for patients of the Alma clinic. Diana Katt, M.D., from the Alma Clinic has graciously agreed to relocate her practice to the Cotton O’Neil Wamego clinic and will welcome all of her Alma patients. Patients will receive a letter describing how to transition their care.

    Stormont Vail Health will continue to review ways to help maintain access to primary care for these communities.

    “We want the people of Lyndon and Alma, and the surrounding area, to know that this decision was not made lightly. However, the current 4% Medicaid cuts, which totaled $3 million in reduced reimbursement for Stormont Vail Health, along with the impact of the state’s failure to expand Medicaid makes it difficult to continue to fund these community clinics,” stated Randy Peterson, president and CEO.

    Stormont Vail Health is making every effort to provide continued employment for the staff affected by these changes.

    “Stormont Vail Health is facing a monumental task: to continue to provide compassionate, high quality and integrated care, all while experiencing continued cutbacks. Unfortunately that causes us to have to make difficult decisions like this one, so that we can continue to provide comprehensive care for the region,” Peterson explained.

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  • Maternal Fetal Medicine Physician Laura Hughes, M.D., Joins Stormont Vail Health

    Monday September 12, 2016

    Patients of Laura Hughes, M.D., describe her as thoughtful, compassionate and thorough, and say it is her reputation, down-to-earth attitude and observant attention to detail that sets her apart from others in her field.

    “I get a great deal of personal satisfaction when caring for others,” said Dr. Hughes. “I appreciate having the opportunity to care for high-risk pregnant women and their unborn babies.”

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Dr. Hughes has joined our medical team and is practicing as a maternal fetal medicine physician. Her practice is located in Stormont Vail Hospital at 1500 S.W. 10th Ave. in Topeka.

    Dr. Hughes received her medical degree at Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Indiana, in 1998. She completed a residency in obstetrics and gynecology in 2002 at St. Elizabeth Health Center - an affiliate of Northeastern Ohio University College of Medicine, Youngstown, Ohio. She completed a fellowship in maternal fetal medicine in 2005 at Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio.

    She is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology and maternal fetal medicine and she is a member of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists as a fellow, and also a member of the Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine.

    Dr. Hughes enjoys spending time with family and friends, as well as watching movies and reading.

    To schedule an appointment, talk to your obstetrics and gynecology provider about a referral to this specialty physician.

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  • Stormont Vail Foundation to host 16th Annual Golf Tournament

    Thursday September 8, 2016

    The Stormont Vail Foundation will host its 16th annual BIG HEARTS for little hearts Golf Tournament on Monday, Sept. 12, at Topeka Country Club. The tournament has already raised more than $204,000 in sponsorships, gifts and registrations.

    The golf tournament will have an 8 a.m. morning flight and 12:30 p.m. afternoon flight, with a dinner and awards ceremony following the tournament.

    Proceeds from the tournament will benefit the Stormont Vail Foundation Children’s Endowment Fund. This fund supports important services and programs that are dedicated to children at Stormont Vail Health including the mother and infant services: Level III Stormont Vail Neonatal Intensive Care, Stormont Vail Birthplace, and Stormont Vail Breastfeeding Center. The Fund also provides support for pediatric services including the Stormont Vail Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, Stormont Vail Pediatrics, as well as pediatric services with Stormont Vail Behavioral Health, Cotton O’Neil Heart Center, Cotton O’Neil Cancer Center, and Cotton O’Neil Diabetes & Endocrinology Center.

    This year’s honorary tournament chairs are Tom and Meef McBride.

    “The quality of care for kids in our area is amplified by the generous support we receive from sponsors and golfers,” said Tina Long, Stormont Vail Foundation development officer. “We are thankful for their faithful support throughout the years as well as the excitement and generous giving we have seen from new sponsors.”

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  • John Evans, M.D., Open House Retirement Reception

    Friday September 2, 2016

    John Evans, M.D., Maternal Fetal Medicine physician is retiring after 24 years of practicing medicine.  

    An open house retirement reception is planned for Tuesday, Sept. 6, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. in the Maternal Fetal Medicine office located within Stormont Vail Hospital, 1500 S.W. 10th Ave. in Topeka.

    Dr. Evans started his medical career in family practice, but then switched to obstetrics and gynecology before settling in his specialty of maternal fetal medicine in 1992.

    Over the years Dr. Evans has been involved with multiple organizations to help facilitate improved perinatal medicine. He has been presented several awards, most notably the Khunshi Award by the Great Plains Organization for Perinatal Health Care, the March of Dimes Saving Babies Award, and the Distinguished Service to Kansas Children award from the Kansas Children’s Service League for his work as a member of the Shawnee County Alliance for Drug Endangered Children. He was appointed in 2009 by then Gov. Kathleen Sebelius to the Blue Ribbon Panel for Infant Mortality and has served as a past medical director for the Shawnee County Health Department’s Mothers and Infant program. He was one of the founding members of the Perinatal Association of Kansas.

    Dr. Evans loves flying and has been a pilot for more than 52 years. He was a flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force and serves as a volunteer for Angel Flights, an organization that arranges free air transportation for any legitimate, charitable, medically related need. He has donated his twin-engine Cessna plane, as well as operating expenses, and has flown some of the missions himself. He has also flown Stormont Vail Health staff for family emergencies when the need arose over the years. In 2015, he received the Wright Brothers Master Pilot award. He has also been awarded the Federal Aviation Administration’s Perfect Flying Record award.

    The Topeka Zoo has used Dr. Evans as a consultant, and he has assisted with many pregnancies at the zoo, providing sonograms for some of the pregnant animals and mammals.

    In addition to flying, in his spare time Dr. Evans enjoys model train collecting and spending time with his son and daughter and their families, as well as his two granddaughters.

    Dr. Evans has kept in contact with many of his past patients, including numerous sets of multiples who have sent him photos over the years. 

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  • Neurological Surgeon Kelli Crabtree-Wilson, M.D., Joins Stormont Vail Health: Helping Patients Recover From Neurological Diseases and Injuries Through One of the ‘Last Frontiers of Medicine.’

    Wednesday August 31, 2016

    Kelli Crabtree-Wilson, M.D. believes the field of neuroscience is one of the “last frontiers” of medicine and that there will be major advancements in the field over the next couple decades that will allow her to help future patients recover from neurologic diseases and injuries in ways we can only imagine.

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Dr. Crabtree-Wilson has joined our medical team and will practice as a neurological surgeon. Her practice will be located at 823 S.W. Mulvane in Topeka.

    Dr. Crabtree-Wilson first became fascinated with medicine and surgery at a young age when her grandmother underwent urgent open-heart surgery and then suffered a stroke in immediate post-operative care. Witnessing her grandmother’s physicians as examples of inspiration, something clicked within the young girl and she knew she wanted to spend her life helping other people.

    “Practicing neurological surgery is truly a privilege,” said Dr. Crabtree-Wilson. “I get to work on the incredibly complex nervous system, which allows each of us to move, speak, think and feel, while also having the opportunity to help patients and their families during some of the toughest times of their lives.”

    Dr. Crabtree-Wilson is dedicated and passionate in her specialty. She has comprehensive clinical training in all aspects of neurological surgery including brain and spine tumors (benign and malignant), pituitary tumors, degenerative spinal disease, and cranial and spinal trauma.

    She received her medical degree at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, Kansas, in 2010. She completed a residency in neurological surgery in 2016 at the University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, Kansas.

    “Many patients are nervous about seeing a neurosurgeon and can feel scared or overwhelmed by the symptoms that are bringing them in, so I strive to make each patient feel at ease,” said Dr. Crabtree-Wilson. “I try to carefully listen so that patients know their concerns are being heard and fully addressed. I think it is essential to explain their disease process and the possible treatment options in a way that is easy for them to understand so together we can determine the best plan for them.”

    Dr. Crabtree-Wilson is a member of the Midwest Neurosurgical Society and the Congress of Neurological Surgeons, as well as the American College of Surgeons and the American Association of Neurological Surgeons.

    As a competitive gymnast from early childhood through college, Dr. Crabtree-Wilson has always believed remaining physically fit is an important part of life. She currently enjoys running, tennis, water skiing and yoga. Having grown up in a suburb of Kansas City, Dr. Crabtree-Wilson has always enjoyed supporting the Kansas City Royals, Kansas City Chiefs and University of Kansas basketball. 

    To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this specialty physician.

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  • Gastroenterologist Brings Single Balloon Enteroscopy Technique to Topeka to Treat Small Bowel Disorders Without Surgery: John Sun, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil Digestive Health Center

    Tuesday August 23, 2016

    John Sun, M.D., specializes in uncommon and difficult digestive cases involving patients with small bowel disorders such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), some of whom have suffered with symptoms for years without relief. Dr. Sun performs a technique known as single-balloon enteroscopy and is proud to return to Topeka and offer this procedure to patients for the diagnosis and treatment of small bowel diseases. This highly specialized and unique endoscopic procedure uses a balloon-assisted enteroscope, which provides unprecedented visualization of lesions and abnormalities in the small bowel, and has the ability to allow non-surgical treatment and biopsy of small bowel pathology. Through single-balloon enteroscopy, many treatments of the small bowel are now possible including stricture dilation, polyp removal, tissue sampling, and various hemostatic procedures to stop active blood loss or destroy bleeding lesions. Dr. Sun was one of the first physicians in the country to perform this procedure.

    Cotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Dr. Sun has joined our medical team and will practice as a gastroenterology physician. His practice will be located at Cotton O’Neil Digestive Health Center, 720 S.W. Lane St. in Topeka. Dr. Sun previously worked at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City as an assistant professor of medicine from 2013 to 2016 and also at Kansas Medical Clinic in Topeka from 2012 to 2013. From 2005 to 2012 he practiced at Kaiser Permanente San Francisco and was also clinical assistant professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, one of the nation’s top academic medical centers.

    Dr. Sun received his medical degree at Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1999. He completed a categorical internal medicine residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, in 2002. He completed a gastroenterology fellowship at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 2005.

    Tanner Speake, PA-C, has also joined the medical team and will be available to see new patients at the Cotton O’Neil Digestive Health Center. Speake received his master of science in physician assistant studies at the University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, in 2016. He received his bachelor of arts in kinesiology at Washburn University in Topeka in 2013.

    “Making your patients better is what keeps me going,” said Dr. Sun. “There is no greater satisfaction than treating a patient who has been through multiple treatments and has had several procedures with no relief, but then tells you ‘I haven’t felt this good in years!’”

    Running and photography are two passions that Dr. Sun enjoys in his spare time. He has an eye for abstract architecture, and his photography has been on exhibit in both the NOTO Arts District in Topeka and in San Francisco, California.

    Dr. Sun and Tanner Speake are now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral.

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  • Stormont Vail Health Recruitment Entry-Level Job Fair

    Tuesday August 23, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health will hold an entry-level job fair on Wednesday, Aug. 31, at Stormont Vail Hospital in the Pozez Education Center, meeting room Centennial C, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

    Representatives will be on hand to meet with applicants. Entry-level positions are available for the following departments in the hospital: Environmental Services, Linen Services, Nutritional Services, Pharmacy, and Security.

    Applicants should apply online at stormontvail.org before coming to the job fair or please bring a resume with them.

    Meeting room Centennial C, in the Pozez Education Center, is located on Stormont Vail Health's main campus at S.W. 8th and Horne streets. Free parking is available in the parking garage. Please enter through the main hospital entrance and follow the signs and guides to the job fair.

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  • Stormont Vail Health Recognized by U.S. News & World Report

    Friday August 5, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health was recognized among the best hospitals in the country in the U.S. News & World Report 2016-17 Best Regional Hospitals rankings. Stormont Vail Health was ranked second in Kansas and achieved the highest rating possible in eight procedures or conditions, including abdominal aortic aneurysm repair and aortic valve surgery, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), colon cancer surgery, heart bypass surgery, heart failure, hip and knee replacement and lung cancer surgery.  Only the University of Kansas Hospital ranked higher in Kansas.        

    “The vision of Stormont Vail Health is to be a national leader in providing compassionate, high quality and effective integrated care through collaboration that results in a healthier community. Seeing recognition like that from U.S. News help us affirm whether or not we are on target with our vision,” said Randy Peterson, CEO and president of Stormont Vail Health. “It’s also exciting to see that one of our collaborative partners, the Mayo Clinic, was ranked as the number one hospital in the United States.”

    Stormont Vail Health joined the Mayo Clinic Care Network in 2014. This partnership includes electronic medical consults between physicians, the ability to ask Mayo experts questions, as well as learn best practices for ancillary services and the business departments within the hospital.

    “When patients come to Stormont Vail Health they can expect to receive some of the best possible care in the state as well as support from the best possible care in the nation,” Peterson continued. “We are proud that our doctors, nurses and other health care professionals provide such a high standard of care.”

    For patients and their physicians, these and other rankings and ratings should be seen as a starting point when considering where to go for care. Individual diagnosis and personal priorities will dictate their personal best choice.

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  • Tender Compassion for Community, Along With Embracing Innovative and Less Invasive Procedures: Cardiothoracic Surgeon Zaynoun El Khoury, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil Heart Center

    Monday August 1, 2016

    Zaynoun El Khoury, M.D., brings a wealth of excellent training and qualifications to his new position as cardiothoracic surgeon for Cotton O’Neil and Stormont Vail Health.

    Cotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Dr. El Khoury has joined our medical team and will practice as a cardiothoracic surgeon. His practice will be located at Cotton O’Neil Heart Center, 830 S.W. Mulvane in Topeka.

    Dr. El Khoury has comprehensive clinical training in all aspects of cardiothoracic surgery with a focus on open and minimally invasive cardiac surgery procedures including coronary artery bypass surgery (on/off pump); valve surgery, including transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR); both heart and lung transplant surgery; ventricular assisted device surgery; pulmonary thromboendarterectomy; and both benign and malignant thoracic surgery. He embracesthe importance of innovative treatments and less-invasive procedures, which give new hope to patients living with heart and lung disease.

    He also brings a tender compassion for community. Dr. El Khoury’s colleagues have described him as an exceptionally personable, intelligent and motivated young man who is eager to please and serve. He embraces the power of information and communication technologies to support patients and their families with the best available information, while respecting their individual values and preferences. He also believes that working cooperatively with other members of the health care team is the key for success and better patient care.

    His journey has been far from conventional. “The path that took me to where I am today is definitely not the one with least resistance,” said Dr. El Khoury. “In fact, during each stage, I had to reevaluate and recommit to what I valued the most.”

    Dr. El Khoury received his medical degree at the American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon, in 2007. He completed a preliminary residency in general surgery at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, in 2009. He completed a categorical residency in general surgery at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital, Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 2014. Dr. El Khoury completed a fellowship in cardiothoracic and vascular surgery at the University of California San Diego, San Diego, California, in 2016.

    Giving back to the community is something that Dr. El Khoury is very passionate about. “My choice through life, and in my career, has seldom been identical,” said Dr. El Khoury. “As a child from a rural village North of Lebanon, my aspirations and goals were shaped by conscientious, loving parents and teachers who instilled in me a sense of discipline, compassion and determination.”

    In Lebanon he served in multiple non-political, non-religious, non-profit medical organizations affiliated with the United Nations Foundation. He was an active member and involved in several projects, including peer education for HIV-AIDS and organizing medical care for displaced victims of the 2006 war in Lebanon. He also served on surgical missions including an assignment to Port-au-Prince, Haiti, in 2012. 

    “As senior resident, I accompanied one of my general surgery faculty members on a surgical mission opportunity at King’s Hospital in Haiti,” said Dr. El Khoury. “In an inpatient and outpatient setting we provided a wide array of general surgery services to the medically underserved population of Port-au-Prince.”

    Dr. El Khoury is board certified in general surgery and is a member of the American College of Surgeons and the Society of Thoracic Surgeons. He is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this specialty physician.

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  • Infectious Disease Physician Has Successful Reputation in the Topeka Community: Michael Tablang, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil

    Monday August 1, 2016

    Cotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Michael Tablang, M.D., has joined our medical team and will practice as an infectious disease physician. Dr. Tablang is dedicated and passionate in his specialty, and he is looking forward to continuing to serve patients in the Topeka community that he calls home. He will practice in the hospital as well as in an outpatient clinic located at Cotton O’Neil Infectious Disease, 901 S.W. Garfield in Topeka. Prior to joining Cotton O’Neil Infectious Disease, Dr. Tablang practiced at St. Francis Health Center.  

    Dr. Tablang is well trained in treating a wide variety of infections in adult patients, including HIV or AIDS, MRSA and hospital-acquired infections.

    He received his medical degree at the University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines, in 2002. He completed a residency in internal medicine in 2009 at the University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Connecticut. Dr. Tablang completed a fellowship in infectious diseases at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, Maryland, in 2012.

    Dr. Tablang is board certified in internal medicine and infectious diseases. He is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this specialty physician.

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  • Compassionate Drive to Serve Others and a Tragic and Personal Loss Leads to Career in Pulmonary Medicine: Hassan Taha, M.D., Joins Stormont Vail Health

    Monday August 1, 2016

    A passion for science, curiosity to understand human disease and a compassionate drive to serve others have all been present with Hassan Taha, M.D., ever since he was young. When a close family member died from respiratory failure due to complications of her lymphoma cancer, this tragic and personal experience sparked a passion in Dr. Taha to become a medical doctor, and later to sub-specialize in the field of pulmonary and critical care medicine.

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Dr. Taha has joined our medical team and will practice as a pulmonology, critical care and sleep medicine physician. His practice will be located at 823 S.W. Mulvane in Topeka.  

    Dr. Taha received his medical degree at Jordan University of Science and Technology, Ar Ramtha, Jordan, in 2008. He completed a year internship at Ministry of Health, Prince Hamzeh Hospital, Jordan, in 2009. He also completed an internal medicine internship and residency at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, Missouri, in 2013. Dr. Taha completed a fellowship in pulmonary and critical care medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin and affiliated hospitals, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 2016.

    “Medicine has allowed me to give back to the community and to the people who gave me the opportunity to be here,” said Dr. Taha. “Helping patients at their weakest times and supporting them through the most difficult moments in their life is very satisfying. Providing up-to-date medical care and evidence based practice, as well as advice, guidance and love, honors my passion about medicine and my specialty in particular.”

    Areas of focus and interest for Dr. Taha include pulmonary hypertension, interstial lung diseases, lung cancer and diagnostic bronchoscopy. While working at the Medical College of Wisconsin and their affiliate hospitals, he had extensive exposure to bone marrow transplant patients, post-transplant complications and a wide variety of obstructive and restrictive lung diseases.

    Outside the office, Dr. Taha enjoys salmon and trout fishing on and around Lake Michigan, as well as spending time with his wife and two very active boys, enjoying hiking and watching movies.

    He is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this specialty physician.

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  • Stormont Vail Health Heritage Room Grand Opening

    Monday August 1, 2016

    Members of the media are invited to a grand opening event at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 3, at Stormont Vail Hospital, 1500 S.W. 10th Ave., Topeka, Kansas.

    A short introduction and invocation will begin at 3 p.m. by Tracy O’Rourke, Stormont Vail Health senior vice president and chief strategy officer.

    About the Stormont Vail Health Heritage Room

    The Stormont Vail Health Heritage Room is home to a wealth of historical information about and images of the people and milestones of Stormont Vail Health and Cotton O’Neil Clinic. It features displays tracing Stormont Vail’s growth from two independent hospitals at the turn of the 19th century, the merger of Stormont Vail and Cotton O’Neil in the 20th century, and the organizations growth into a health care leader in hospital and clinic medical services for Kansans in the 21st century.

    The room features an interactive kiosk charting the organization’s history, medical advancements, many specialty and regional clinics, and the legacy of leadership in administration and medicine.

    Also on display are a selection of artifacts from the history of medicine, including a patient registration book from the early 1900s along with a patient bill from the same time period. Examples of employee newsletters and a small selection of surgeon’s tools are also on display.

    The room was made possible through the generosity of the Stormont Vail Foundation.

    To attend the grand opening, please contact Nancy Burkhardt, Director of Marketing & Communications, at (785) 354-6927 or nburkhar@stormontvail.org.

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  • Most Meaningful and Rewarding Experiences Occur While Interacting With Patients in the Midst of Difficult Situations: Melanie Skelton, M.D., Joins Stormont Vail Health Palliative Medicine & Supportive Care

    Thursday July 28, 2016

    It takes a tender combination of special qualities including compassion, kindness, communication, listening and understanding to practice palliative medicine. Stormont Vail Health’s newest palliative medicine and support care physician, Melanie Skelton, M.D., possess all those qualities, in addition to that of empathy. Having personally experienced the loss of a loved one after a long battle with cancer, Dr. Skelton is particularly passionate about helping patients and families navigate the struggles of terminal illness. She said many of the most meaningful and rewarding experiences of her medical career occurred while interacting with patients in the midst of difficult situations.

    Dr. Skelton originally pursued a career in medicine because of a fascination with health and healing, but she chose her area of focus because it afforded her the greatest opportunity to positively impact other people’s lives. Dr. Skelton said she is humbled by the trust patients bestow upon their physicians during difficult, life-threatening and or life-limiting illnesses.

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Dr. Skelton has joined our medical team and will practice as a palliative physician. She will see patients within the hospital as well as outpatient patients at Cotton O’Neil Mulvane, 823 S.W. Mulvane, and Cotton O’Neil Cancer Center, 1414 S.W. Eight Ave., both in Topeka.

    Dr. Skelton received her medical degree at Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, Georgia, in 2011. She completed an internship in internal medicine at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, in 2014. She completed a fellowship in hospice and palliative medicine at Vanderbilt University in 2015.

    “I believe I have always been an empathetic person, and consequently became an empathetic physician,” said Dr. Skelton. “However, having sat at the bedside both as a physician and as a daughter during end-of-life care, I came to realize how hard it is to truly understand what patients and families are going through. Each person’s experience is very individual. I am focused on finding out what is most important to each individual patient and then helping them achieve their personal goals within the framework of their illness.”

    Dr. Skelton enjoys running, cooking and reading. She also enjoys spending time with her husband and family, traveling whenever the opportunity presents itself, and hiking with her two Rhodesian ridgeback puppies.

    Dr. Skelton is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to Palliative Medicine & Support Care for symptom management in patients with life threatening and or life-limiting illnesses.

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  • Advocating and Building Supportive Partnerships With Patients is Key Focus For New Dermatologist: Grant Ghahramani, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil Dermatology

    Thursday July 28, 2016

    Grant Ghahramani, M.D., strives to serve as an advocate and guide, as well as dedicatehimself to building supportive partnerships with each of his patients, empowering them to take an active role in their health care.

    “Skin impairments can dramatically affect a patient’s quality of life,” said Dr. Ghahramani. “They can be stigmatizing. I’d like my patients to feel confident about their skin, and I take pride in helping them achieve this goal.”

    Cotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Dr. Ghahramani has joined our medical team and will practice as a dermatologist. His practice will be located at Cotton O’Neil Dermatology, 6650 S.W. Mission Valley Drive in Topeka.

    Dr. Ghahramani received his medical degree at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri, in 2012. He completed a transitional year residency at Mercy Hospital, St. Louis, Missouri, in 2013. He completed a residency in dermatology at the University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa, in 2016.

    “I became a physician because I enjoy solving difficult problems,” said Dr. Ghahramani. “I advocate for my patients and their families, and I believe in life-long learning.”

    Dr. Ghahramani’s patients describe him as having a calm manner, being straightforward and caring, and he tries to have patients’ best interests in mind at all times. He says his goal during clinic visits is to be 100 percent patient-focused while utilizing his medical team to be more computer-focused.

    Dr. Ghahramani has a heart for serving the community. He has volunteered at numerous skin cancer screening events over the years, as well as volunteered as an instructor for Saint Louis University’s SPOTS program, which stands for Sun Protection Outreach Teaching by Students.

    He married his college sweetheart, and they have a two-year-old daughter and a yellow Labrador retriever. He enjoys hiking, fly fishing, cooking and traveling.

    Dr. Ghahramani is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this specialty physician.

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  • New Advanced Practice Provider Melynda Swoyer Uses Patient Education to Empower Patients to Be Active in Their Health Goals; Cotton O’Neil Meriden Now Accepting New Patients

    Wednesday July 27, 2016

    Patient education is something that Melynda Swoyer, APRN, is passionate about. She tries to help her patients understand health issues whether they are being seen for acute care or chronic illnesses. She believes education is the key to empowerment, and she encourages her patients to take an active role in setting and achieving their health care goals.

    Swoyer joined Cotton O’Neil Meriden in June 2016. The clinic is located at 407 E. Wyandotte, in Meriden.

    Swoyer received her bachelor of science in nursing degree at the University of Kansas School of Nursing in 2007. She received her master of science in nursing/family nurse practitioner degree at the University of Kansas School of Nursing in 2010. Swoyer worked previously as a mid-level provider at the Cotton O’Neil Heart Center in 2011. She also worked as a mid-level provider at F.W. Huston Medical Center, Winchester, from 2010 to 2012 in both the family practice and emergency/urgent care areas, and at the University of Kansas Watkins Student Health Clinic in 2013. Swoyer worked as a mid-level at St. Luke’s Medical Group, Lansing, from 2013 to 2016 before joining Cotton O’Neil Meriden.

    “I became a nurse practitioner so I could take my nursing practice to a different level,” said Swoyer. “I enjoy direct patient care and my role as an advanced practice provider lets me interact one-on-one with patients. Together we work toward achieving their health care goals.”

    Patients have described Swoyer as a good listener, compassionate and someone who treats each patient as she would a family member. She is a certified family nurse practitioner and a certified DOT medical examiner.

    Swoyer has lived in Jefferson County for more than 30 years. She and her husband raised four children, and they have three grandchildren. She enjoys bicycle riding, caring for her horses and sewing.

    Cotton O’Neil Meriden is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call Health Connections at (785) 354-5225.

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  • A Life-Long Love of Teaching and Thirst for Knowledge Takes One Orthopedic Surgeon On a Journey That Prepares Him to Fix Broken Bones: Jake Deister, M.D. MBA, Joins Cotton O’Neil Orthopedics & Sports Medicine

    Monday July 25, 2016

    Jake Deister, M.D., MBA, loves teaching and has a thirst for knowledge. He grew up in Topeka in a family of five boys and has always been active, physical and energetic. Watching one of his brothers go through a very challenging health condition was the spark that ignited a 12-year journey to become an orthopedic surgeon. This journey included many educational stops along the way, some halfway around the world, which would prepare him to be well rounded. After benefitting from all of his schooling, Dr. Deister felt ready to pursue the occupation that would allow him to come back to his hometown community to practice medicine by linking his educational passion with the practical use of tools to alleviate pain in the patients who come to him for help.

    Cotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Dr. Deister has joined our medical team and will practice as an orthopedic surgeon. His practice will be located at Cotton O’Neil Orthopedic & Sports Medicine, 2660 S.W. Third St. in Topeka.

    Dr. Deister received his medical degree at Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio, in 2011 and he completed a surgical residency at Wright State University in 2016. He also has an MBA from the University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio, and a bachelor of science degree in philosophy from Cedarville University, Cedarville, Ohio.

    He spent two years in Moscow, Russia, after high school where he taught English. Dr. Deister then came back to the United States and continued his education studying both philosophy and political theory. Next, he obtained his master in business administration degree and worked a few years as a business strategy consultant before moving over to the public sector, spending two years as the assistant to the Board of County Commissioners in Ohio.

    “It was in Moscow that I discovered that I loved to teach,” said Dr. Deister. “I have found that patients usually know more than they think they do, and often all it takes is some creative teaching to help alleviate some of the fears of being in the surgeon’s office. I have found that the best treatment plans are developed when both the patient and I fully understand each other. Patients leave my office feeling that they’ve been heard and that they know a bit more about orthopedic surgery as well as have a firm grasp on what our treatment plan will be.”

    Dr. Deister specializes in the replacement of worn-out and painful knees, hips and shoulders and says he enjoys seeing his patients return to an active lifestyle after living for a long time with pain. He also enjoys fixing broken bones in both children and adults and working through the challenges faced by patients with a traumatic injury.

    He and his wife, Brooke, have seven children, and they enjoy running, staying fit and being active, and supporting their children in all of their activities. Dr. Deister enjoys snow skiing and fishing, and he has a fondness for watching University of Kansas basketball.

    Dr. Deister is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this orthopedic surgeon.

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  • Practicing Innovative Evidence Based Medicine While Delivering Personalized Care: Justin Halbe, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil as Cardiologist

    Friday July 22, 2016

    Justin Halbe, M.D., strives to practice evidence based medicine and stays as current as possible with new treatment and prevention options as they become available. He became a physician because he wanted to be constantly challenged and wanted to have a direct, positive impact on other people’s lives on a daily basis. Dr. Halbe enjoys spending time with his patients and cares about them by investing himself in their care, heath and well-being.

    Cotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Dr. Halbe has joined our medical team and will practice as a cardiologist. His practice will be located at Cotton O’Neil Heart Center, 929 S.W. Mulvane in Topeka.

    Dr. Halbe received his medical degree at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri, in 2010. He completed a residency program in internal medicine at University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics, Madison, Wisconsin, in 2013. He completed a fellowship in cardiovascular medicine at Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 2016.

    “I dedicate myself to my patients,” said Dr. Halbe. “I do my best to listen to their concerns, be empathetic to their illness, yet be direct and honest with them in their state of health and treatment options.”

     When not in the office, Dr. Halbe enjoys spending time with his wife and two sons, and he enjoys photography, hiking and outdoor activities.

    Dr. Halbe is board certified in internal medicine and is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this cardiology specialty physician.

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  • Cotton O’Neil Family Medicine North and Cotton O’Neil Express Care North Open and Ready to See Patients

    Wednesday July 20, 2016

    The story of exceptional wellness care and ready and reliable urgent care for the community north of Topeka starts with the new Cotton O’Neil Family Medicine North and Cotton O’Neil Express Care North. A community open house event was held from 1-3 p.m. on July 17, at the new facility.

    About the Cotton O’Neil North Building:

    The top level of the building houses Cotton O’Neil Family Medicine North. Drs. Patrick Raney, Melissa Herrman and Timothy Borchers began seeing patients at this new location May 16, 2016.

    The main level is 19,785 square feet with 36 exam rooms and two procedure rooms. The building has been designed using a Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) concept that facilitates relationship-based care. Staff will greet patients in an open and inviting waiting area, and check-in kiosks allow for shorter wait times. As patients move to treatment areas, color-coded pods create an open, collaborative clinic. This concept allows for a team-based approach to an individual’s treatment with a constant flow of information between providers all working together to deliver care. Flexible ancillary rooms are available for group visits to engage patients in the process of wellness learning.

    The lower level of the building houses Cotton O’Neil Express Care North. Physicians and mid-levels at this urgent care clinic treat minor illnesses or injuries that can’t be immediately treated by a primary care physician. Cotton O’Neil Express Care North will start seeing patients on July 20. Hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends and holidays.

    The lower level is 19,958 square feet with seven exam rooms and two procedure rooms. A lab is available in the building for blood draws, as well as an X-ray room with an all-digital unit.

    Parking on the south side of the building is for Cotton O’Neil Family Medicine North and offers 66 spaces. Parking for Cotton O’Neil Express Care North is on the north side of the building and has 103 spaces.

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  • Surgeon Takes Thoughtful Approach in Treating Neurological Diseases By Actively Listening and Forming Personal Relationships With Each Patient: Ben Boudreaux, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil as Neurological Surgeon

    Monday July 18, 2016

    Ben Boudreaux, M.D., treats neurological diseases by striving to actively listen, be physically present and take a thoughtful and unified approach with each patient and their family to find a winning treatment plan.

    Cotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Dr. Boudreaux has joined our medical team and will practice as a neurological surgeon. His practice will be located at 823 S.W. Mulvane in Topeka.

    Dr. Boudreaux received his medical degree at Louisiana State University School of Medicine, New Orleans, La., in 2009. He completed a surgical internship at University of Texas Southwestern, Dallas, Texas, in 2010. He completed a residency program in neurosurgery at University of Texas Southwestern, Dallas, Texas, in 2016.

    “It is a great responsibility to treat neurosurgical diseases,” said Dr. Boudreaux. “When a treatment decision is reached, the patient and their family form a personal relationship with their surgeon. There is no better feeling than to ‘win’ with the patient. I hope to do the best for my patients by educating them about treatment options and providing technically excellent surgical care.”

    He and his wife, Barbara, have two young daughters, Lucy and Ellerie, and they are expecting twin boys in October of this year.

    Dr. Boudreaux is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this neurological surgeon.

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  • Cotton O’Neil Family Medicine North and Cotton O’Neil Express Care North Open House

    Tuesday July 12, 2016

    Members of the media are invited to an open house event from 1-3 p.m. on Sunday, July 17, at the Cotton O’Neil North building, 4505 N.W. Fielding Road. (In the Hunter’s Ridge area, just east of Highway 75 and N.W. 46th St.)

    Tours of the clinic will be offered, refreshments served and there will be a drawing for a pack of four tickets and parking pass to a Kansas City Royals game.

    If you would like to set up an interview at the open house, please contact Nancy Burkhardt, director of Marketing & Communications, at (785) 354-6927 or nburkhar@stormontvail.org.

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  • Combining a Passion for Knowledge with Compassion and Service: Patria Alba, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil as Pediatric Endocrinology Physician

    Tuesday July 5, 2016

    Human physiology has always fascinated Patria Alba, M.D. ever since she was a small child. When deciding on a career, she realized that she wanted her job to be her mission in life and that she wanted to find a way to wake up every morning to help alleviate pain and disease. Becoming a pediatric endocrinologist allows her to combine her passion with studying and investigating one of the most important aspects in human physiology: how hormones affect our body.

    Cotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Patria Alba, M.D., has joined Cotton O’Neil and will practice as a pediatric endocrinology physician. Her practice will be located at the Cotton O’Neil Diabetes & Endocrinology Center, 3520 S.W. Sixth Ave., in Topeka.

    Dr. Alba received her medical degree at Pontificia Universidad Catolica Madre Y Maestra (PUCMM), School of Medicine, Dominican Republic, in 2005. She completed a residency program in pediatrics at Elmhurst Hospital/Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Elmhurst, N.Y., in 2013. She completed a fellowship in Pediatric endocrinology at Children’s Mercy Hospital, University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Medicine, Kansas City, Mo., in 2016.

    “With knowledge and great treatment options available, I have the opportunity to help my patients in a direct way,” said Dr. Alba. “Following patients for a long period of time and getting to know them on a personal level is deeply satisfying and enjoyable.”

    Patients have described Dr. Alba as compassionate, thorough, relatable, knowledgeable, always willing to explain the process of disease and treatment options, and deeply invested in her patients. She has been active in community service by serving as a diabetes camp physician for two years. She also served as an ARS Humano physician and provided medical assistance in Haiti after a 7.0 earthquake hit the country in 2010.

    Dr. Alba is board certified in pediatrics and is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, talk to your primary care physician about a referral to this pediatric endocrinology specialty physician.

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  • Clayton Wood, D.O., MBA, Joins Stormont Vail Emergency Department

    Monday June 6, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health is proud to announce that Clayton Wood, D.O. has joined the emergency medicine department at Stormont Vail Health.

    Dr. Wood received his doctor of osteopathic medicine degree at Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences, and a Master’s of Business Administration degree at Rockhurst University, Kansas City, in 2012. He completed a residency in Emergency Medicine at the University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, in 2015. He has served as chief resident at the University of Kansas Emergency Medicine since 2014. He most recently practiced as an emergency medicine physician at Research Medical Center, Kansas City.

    Dr. Wood is a member of the American College of Emergency Physicians. He is married with a 19-month-old son. He enjoys golf, exercise, travel and time with his family.

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  • Stormont Vail Health Receives Top Quality Awards For Both Stroke and Heart Failure Care

    Tuesday May 31, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health has received the Get With the Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Plus and also a Get With the Guidelines®-Heart Failure Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award for heart failure care.

    Both were achieved by participating in a quality improvement program that helps hospital teams follow the most up-to-date, research-based standards with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing hospital readmissions in heart failure and stroke patients.

    The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Plus recognizes the hospital’s commitment to providing the most appropriate stroke treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

    Stormont Vail Health has received the Get With the Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Plus and also a Get With the Guidelines®-Heart Failure Gold Plus with Target: Heart Failure Honor Roll Quality Achievement Award.

    Both were achieved by participating in a quality improvement program that helps hospital teams follow the most up-to-date, research-based standards with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing hospital readmissions in heart failure and stroke patients.

    The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Achievement Award with Target: StrokeSM Honor Roll Elite Plus recognizes the hospital’s commitment to providing the most appropriate stroke treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

    Stormont Vail Health has achieved the highest award possible. The gold plus portion of the award shows that we demonstrate consistency in compliance with significant quality and achievement measures related to the care of the stroke patient. 

    The Target: Stroke SM Honor Roll Elite Plus portion of the award was achieved in 2015, the first year it was offered.  Stormont Vail Health achieved this award by treating more than 50 percent of ischemic stroke patients who met certain criteria in less than 45 minutes from the time they arrived in the Emergency Department.

    In order to treat patients this quickly, we have an excellent team that consists of stroke nurses, physicians, lab phlebotomists, CT technicians, nurses and patient care technicians that all work together to make sure the needs of the patient are met. 

    In addition, Stormont Vail Health has received the Get With The Guidelines®-Heart Failure Gold Plus Target: Heart Failure Honor Roll Quality Achievement Award for implementing specific quality improvement measures outlined by the American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology Foundation’s secondary prevention guidelines for patients with heart failure.

    Stormont Vail Health earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of heart failure patients. These measures include evaluation of the patient, proper use of medications and aggressive risk-reduction therapies, such as ACE inhibitors/ARBs, beta-blockers, diuretics, anticoagulants and other appropriate therapies. Before patients are discharged, they receive education on managing their heart failure and overall health, get a follow-up visit scheduled within seven days, as well as receive other care transition interventions.

    This award is the highest award possible for heart failure quality measures. Enrollment in these programs is an initiative that provides hospitals with educational tools, prevention programs and treatment guidelines designed to reduce the risk of heart failure patients ending up back in the hospital. Hospitals are required to meet criteria that improves medication adherence, provides early follow-up care and coordination and enhances patient education to achieve the awards. The goal is to reduce hospital readmissions and help patients improve their quality of life in managing this chronic condition.

    About Stormont Vail Health:

    Stormont Vail Health is a nonprofit integrated health care system that has been serving the health care needs of northeast Kansas for more than 130 years. It is comprised of Stormont Vail Health, a 586-bed acute care hospital, and Cotton O’Neil Clinic, a multi-specialty physician group with 244physicians. More than 4,800 employees provide care and support services for patients in the hospital and 27 other locations, including the Cotton O’Neil Heart Center, Cancer Center, Diabetes & Endocrinology Center, Digestive Health Center, Pediatrics clinics and multiple regional primary care clinics. Stormont Vail Health is committed to its mission of improving the health of the community by providing high quality, compassionate care with state-of-the-art equipment in convenient, comfortable facilities for patients and families.

    About Get With The Guidelines

    Get With The Guidelines® is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s hospital-based quality improvement program that provides hospitals with the latest research-based guidelines. Developed with the goal of saving lives and hastening recovery, Get With The Guidelines has touched the lives of more than 6 million patients since 2001. For more information, visit heart.org.

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  • 2016 Excellence in Nursing Award Winners

    Tuesday May 31, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health hosted its 9th Annual Excellence in Nursing Awards on May 12, in the Pozez Education Center Auditorium. This year 36 patient care staff finalists were nominated to receive an Excellence in Nursing Award. Following a short program, the following winners were announced in nine categories:

    • Excellence in Nursing Practice – A registered nurse who demonstrates outstanding patient care and clinical expertise, collaborates with nursing colleagues and other health-related professionals, and keeps abreast of current trends and issues in nursing practice.

    Natalie Roeder, BSN, RN - PACU and Lisa Sylvester, BSN, RN – Neonatal Intensive Care

    • Excellence in Nursing Leadership - A registered nurse who promotes a culture of staff who is positive, challenged and involved, has creative problem solving that leads to improved health care outcomes and enhances the role of the nurse. 

    Jana Tenbrink, BSN, RN – Medical Critical Care

    • Excellence in Nursing Mentorship – A registered nurse who serves as a resource for the growth and development of others, supports and facilitates positive learning experiences and demonstrates passion that inspires peers.

    Steve Peterson, BSN, RN-BC – 5 North and Jon     Quanstrom, BSN, RN – EP Lab

    • Excellence in Nursing Preceptorship - A registered nurse who provides accurate, constructive feedback, promotes multidisciplinary collaboration and provides clinical experiences to promote professional growth. 

     Amy Baker, BSN, RN – EP Device Clinic

    • Excellence in Nursing Research - A registered nurse who is actively involved in nursing research, communicates findings by podium or poster presentation and/or publication, is involved in research to improve the quality of care, and provide economic benefit to the community/hospital, or has the potential broader social impact. 

    Finalist – Ruth Ohm, Ph.D., APRN, RN – Baker School of Nursing 

    • Excellence in Licensed Practical Nursing – A licensed practical nurse who fosters a culture that promotes quality nursing practice environments, serves as a patient/family advocate, and collaborates with nursing colleagues and other health-related professionals to facilitate quality care.

    Trishelle Alexander, LPN – Diabetes Support Services and Linda Wiese, LPN - Birthplace

    • Rising Star - Nurses who show commitment to Stormont Vail Health, exemplify high standards of practice and professionalism, and actively seek out professional growth opportunities. 

    Jamie Andrews, LPN - Rheumatology and Nicholas Schneider, BSN, RN - Surgery

    • Excellence in Patient Care - Patient care technicians or operating room assistants who are self-directed, require minimum supervision, exhibit excellence in follow-through skills, are team players and remain eager and willing to learn. 

    Nikki Picotte, PCT - Pediatrics; Teresa-Renee Fred, PCT – Emergency Department; Teresa Hernandez, CST - Surgery; and Josh Witt, PCT – Medical Critical Care

    • Distinguished Community Service - A nurse who makes significant contributions through community service activities and influences and inspires others to be involved. 

    Jean Pope, RN, CPAN - PACU

    Award honorees were nominated by physicians, nurses, colleagues, mentors and friends who took the opportunity to recognize those who continually strive for and contribute to the professionalism of patient care.

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  • Stormont Vail Health Sponsoring Free Skin Cancer Screening April 9

    Wednesday May 25, 2016

    Appointments Can Now Be Made by Calling Health Connections

    A free community skin cancer screening will be provided by Stormont Vail Health in an effort to improve the health of our community. This is an opportunity to have suspicious moles and other spots checked for signs of cancer, and to determine if further analysis is necessary.  

    Skin cancer is the most common of all cancers and accounts for half of all cancers in the United States.

    The free skin cancer screening clinic will be held from 8 a.m. to noon, Saturday, April 9, at the Cotton O’Neil Cancer Center, 1414 S.W. 8th Ave., Topeka.

    An appointment is required. To make an appointment, call Health Connections at (785) 354-5225.

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  • Cotton O’Neil North Ribbon Cutting

    Monday May 23, 2016

    INVITATION TO MEDIA:

    Members of the media are invited to a ribbon cutting Monday, May 23, at 4:30 p.m., for the new Cotton O’Neil North Family Medicine, 4505 N.W. Fielding Road. The location is east of Highway 75 and N.W. 46th street.

    Stormont Vail Health administrators, physicians and staff will be on hand to celebrate the opening of the building.

    About the Cotton O’Neil North Family Medicine Building:

    The top level of the new building houses Cotton O’Neil Family Medicine. Drs. Patrick Raney, Melissa Herrman and Timothy Borchers began seeing patients at this new location May 16, 2016. The main level is 19,785 square feet with 36 exam rooms and two procedure rooms. The building has been designed using a Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) concept that facilitates relationship based care. Staff will greet patients in an open and inviting waiting area and check-in kiosks allow for shorter wait times. As patients move to treatment areas, color-coded pods create an open, collaborative clinic. This concept allows for a team-based approach to an individual’s treatment with a constant flow of information between providers who are all working together to deliver care. Flexible ancillary rooms are available for group visits to engage patients in the process of wellness learning. A lab is available for blood draws, as well as an X-ray room with an all-digital unit.

    A community open house is planned for July 2016. 

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  • 2016 Excellence in Nursing Awards

    Thursday May 12, 2016

    Stormont Vail Health will host its 9th Annual Excellence in Nursing Awards at 6:30 p.m. on May 12, in the Pozez Education Center Auditorium. This year 36 patient care staff finalists were nominated to receive an Excellence in Nursing Award. Following a short program, winners will be announced in the following categories:

    • Excellence in Nursing Practice – A registered nurse who demonstrates outstanding patient care and clinical expertise, collaborates with nursing colleagues and other health-related professionals, and keeps abreast of current trends and issues in nursing practice.

    Finalists – Allison Alexander, BSN, RN, CMSRN; Natalie Roeder, BSN, RN; DeAnna Fitzgerald, BSN, RN; Lisa Sylvester, BSN, RN; Derek Lenherr, RN

    • Excellence in Nursing Leadership - A registered nurse who promotes a culture of staff who is positive, challenged and involved, has creative problem solving that leads to improved health care outcomes and enhances the role of the nurse. 

    Finalists – Gina Anderson, APRN, FNP-C; Karen Copeland, MSN, BSN, RN, OB-C, CNL-C; Jana Tenbrink, BSN, RN

    • Excellence in Nursing Mentorship – A registered nurse who serves as a resource for the growth and development of others, supports and facilitates positive learning experiences and demonstrates passion that inspires peers. 

    Finalists – Laura Caby, BSN, RN; Steve Peterson, BSN, RN-BC, Tresha Flanary, MHCL, BSN, RN; Jon Quanstrom, BSN, RN; Staci Peterson, BSN, RNC-NIC

    • Excellence in Nursing Preceptorship - A registered nurse who provides accurate, constructive feedback, promotes multidisciplinary collaboration and provides clinical experiences to promote professional growth. 

    Finalists – Amy Baker, BSN, RN; Jaime Maine, BSN, RN; Katherine Schmidt, BSN, RN

    • Excellence in Nursing Research - A registered nurse who is actively involved in nursing research, communicates findings by podium or poster presentation and/or publication, is involved in research to improve the quality of care, and provide economic benefit to the community/hospital, or has the potential broader social impact. 

    Finalist – Ruth Ohm, Ph.D., APRN, RN

    • Excellence in Licensed Practical Nursing – A licensed practical nurse who fosters a culture that promotes quality nursing practice environments, serves as a patient/family advocate, and collaborates with nursing colleagues and other health-related professionals to facilitate quality care.

    Finalists – Trishelle Alexander, LPN; Trudi Richardson, LPN; Kelli Eiserman, LPN; Linda Wiese, LPN; Kellie Haney, LPN

    • Rising Star - Nurses who show commitment to Stormont Vail Health, exemplify high standards of practice and professionalism, and actively seek out professional growth opportunities. 

    Finalists – Jamie Andrews, LPN; Nicholas Schneider, BSN, RN; Rachel Cessna, BSN, RN; Paige Wynne, BSN, RN; Emily McGinnis, BSN, RN

    • Excellence in Patient Care - Patient care technicians and operating room assistants who are self-directed, require minimum supervision, exhibit excellence in follow-through skills, are team players and remain eager and willing to learn. 

    Finalists – Jessica Bulmer, PCT; Nikki Picotte, PCT; Teresa-Renee Fred, PCT; Nicole Williams, PCT; Teresa Hernandez, CST; Josh Witt, PCT

    • Distinguished Community Service - A nurse who makes significant contributions through community service activities and influences and inspires others to be involved. 

    Finalists – Cynthia Cook, LPN; Jean Pope, RN, CPAN; Teresa Taylor, BSN, RN

    Award honorees were nominated by physicians, nurses, colleagues, mentors and friends who took the opportunity to recognize those who continually strive for and contribute to the professionalism of patient care.

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  • Samantha Muppalla, M.D., Joins Cotton O’Neil as Family Medicine Physician

    Wednesday April 27, 2016

    Samantha Muppalla, MDCotton O’Neil is proud to announce that Samantha Muppalla, M.D., has joined Cotton O’Neil and will practice as a family medicine physician. Her practice will be located at 901 S.W. Garfield Ave., in Topeka. She is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call Health Connections at (785) 354-5225.

    Dr. Muppalla, received her medical degree at Guntur Medical College, Guntur, India, in 2002. She completed an internship at Guntur General Hospital, Guntur, India, in 2003. After relocating to the U.S., she went on to complete a residency in family medicine at Wesley Family Medicine, in Wichita, in 2011. She has two daughters and enjoys classical dance, walking and crafting.     

    Most recently, Dr. Muppalla has been employed at St. Francis Health Center. She is board certified in family medicine and obesity medicine. She is a member of the American Obesity Society, the American Academy of Family Physicians, and the Kansas Academy of Family Physicians. She is now accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, call Health Connections at (785) 354-5225.

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  • Cotton O’Neil Kanza Park Community Open House

    Friday April 22, 2016

    INVITATION TO MEDIA:

    Members of the media are invited to a Community Open House event from 1-3 p.m., Sunday, April 24, at the Cotton O’Neil Kanza Park building, 2660 S.W. 3 rd St. (two blocks north of 6th and MacVicar Sts)

    Activities for the community will include building tours, prize drawings, free ice cream and snacks, family-friendly activities including face painting, a flower-planting activity, and a free inflatable obstacle course.

    About the Cotton O’Neil Kanza Park Building:

    The second floor (top level) of the new building houses Cotton O’Neil Orthopedic & Sports Medicine (the new name of the combined practices of Kansas Orthopedic and Sports Medicine and Cotton O’Neil Orthopedic Surgery). Physicians who are located in this building include: John Gilbert, M.D., Peter Lepse, M.D., Michael McCoy, M.D., Joseph Mumford, M.D., Bradley Poole, M.D., Michael Smith, M.D., Shaun Steeby, M.D., Brett Wallace, M.D. and Brian Wilson, M.D. Parking and entry for Cotton O’Neil Orthopedic & Sports Medicine is on the west side of the building.

    Cotton O’Neil Physical, Occupational & Speech Therapy services, formerly located at Fleming Place and at KOSM) is located on the first floor (middle level) of the building. The parking and entrance for this service is also on the west side of the building.

    Stormont Vail Single Day Surgery relocated from its previous location at 823 Mulvane, to the lower level of the new building. The parking and entrance for this service is on the east side of the building, closest to MacVicar St.

    The total building space is 88,000 square feet and features a total of 266 parking spaces in both lots to accommodate new patients. All services within the building started seeing patients and the first outpatient surgery case was performed in January. An employee open house and ribbon cutting was held on Jan. 6, 2016. 

     

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  • Stormont Vail Auxiliary’s Angel Tree Project Celebrates 10th Anniversary and Raises $17,926 for Stormont Vail Cancer Patients

    Wednesday February 10, 2016

    The Stormont Vail Health Auxiliary raised a record amount of $17,926 during the 2015 Stormont Vail Auxiliary Angel Tree Program.

    Proceeds from the sale benefit the Angel Fund for Cotton O'Neil Cancer Center patient needs. This fund provides emergency financial assistance for any special needs of cancer patients and their families such as housing, food, utilities, transportation, cosmetic prosthetics and medicine.

    2015 marked the 10th anniversary of this annual fundraising project. Every year during the holiday season, trees inside Stormont Vail Health and the Cotton O'Neil Cancer Center are adorned with beautiful angels, each purchased in honor or in memory of someone special. The angels are purchased by Stormont Vail employees, volunteers, patient families, and the public during the month of November and December and hung on the trees. After the holidays, angels hung on the trees were distributed to those who purchased and requested their angels returned.

    This year, a 12-ft. tree in the north tower lobby and similar trees in the Pavilion lobby at the hospital, and at the Cancer Center, were decorated to capacity, and all 2,000 angels were sold.

    Martha Granger, Angel Tree Project chair, said that in the last 10 years she is very pleased that over $120,000 has been raised through the angel fund for cancer patients.

    Individuals or groups may also donate to the fund at any time throughout the year.

    Please call the Stormont Vail Auxiliary at (785) 354-6095 for more information or to make a donation to the Angel Fund.

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  • Cotton O’Neil Kanza Park Building Now Open and Seeing Orthopedic, Rehabilitation and Single Day Surgery Patients

    Tuesday January 26, 2016

    The Cotton O’Neil Kanza Park building, located at 2660 S.W. Third St., north of Sixth and MacVicar, opened for business in early January 2016. A ribbon cutting ceremony was held on Wednesday, Jan. 6. The 88,000 square foot facility offers ample space, easy access and beautiful views for Stormont's orthopedic, rehabilitation and single day surgery services.

    The second floor (top level) of the new building houses Cotton O’Neil Orthopedic & Sports Medicine (the new name of the combined practices of Kansas Orthopedic and Sports Medicine and Cotton O’Neil Orthopedic Surgery). Physicians who relocated to this new building include: John Gilbert, M.D., Peter Lepse, M.D., Michael McCoy, M.D., Joseph Mumford, M.D., Bradley Poole, M.D., Michael Smith, M.D., Shaun Steeby, M.D., Brett Wallace, M.D. and Brian Wilson, M.D. Kellie Bartlow, D.O., Family Medicine and Sports Medicine physician, also relocated her practice to the new facility and supervises a concussion clinic there. Parking and entry is on the west side of the building.

    Cotton O’Neil Physical, Occupational & Speech Therapy (Stormont Vail Physical, Occupational & Speech Therapy services, formerly located at Fleming Place and at Kansas Orthopedic & Sports Medicine) relocated to the first floor (middle level) of the building. The parking and entrance for this service is also on the west side of the building.

    Stormont Vail Single Day Surgery relocated from its location at 823 Mulvane, to the lower level of the new building. The parking and entrance for this service is on the east side of the building, closest to MacVicar.

    At the ribbon cutting event for the Kanza Park facility, Randy Peterson, Stormont Vail Health president and chief executive officer, announced that the building has been dedicated as the Dr. Kent Palmberg building.

    A community open house is being planned for Spring 2016. 

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  • Stormont Vail Health Chief Medical Officer announces retirement plans; Successor named

    Tuesday January 12, 2016

    Topeka, KS (January 12, 2016) – Stormont Vail Health Senior Vice President/Chief Medical Officer Kent Palmberg, M.D., announced today his plans to retire later this year. Palmberg, who has been with Stormont Vail Health since it merged with Cotton O’Neil in 1995, and with Cotton O’Neil since 1978, will spend much of 2016 transitioning. His official last day is yet to be determined.

    “Dr. Palmberg’s contributions to this organization and to health care in this community are enormous,” said Stormont Vail Health President and CEO Randy Peterson. “He is a pioneer who understands the business of health care but has never lost sight of the number one priority of taking care of people. He will be truly missed. We are happy for him and are looking forward to celebrating his contributions and accomplishments in the coming months.”

    Dr. Palmberg has been at the forefront of many advances in health care access in Topeka and across the region, including engineering with others more than 20 years ago the merger between Stormont Vail and the Cotton O’Neil to create the model, regional integrated health care system that exists today. And impressively, Dr. Palmberg has recruited more than 350 physicians to the area.  

    Some of Palmberg’s other accomplishments include leading the startup of the state’s first hospitalist program, and developing Stormont Vail Health’s trauma program and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. In the community, Dr. Palmberg has received numerous accolades. He was inducted into the Topeka Business Hall of Fame in 2011. He received the Philanthropic Leadership Award from the Topeka Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals in 2015 and the Donald A. Wilson Visionary Award from the Kansas Hospital Association in 2007.

    Peterson also announced today plans for Palmberg’s successor. “I am pleased to announce that Robert Kenagy, M.D., M.M.M., will join Stormont Vail Health as Senior Vice President/Chief Medical Officer on April 15, 2016.” Dr. Kenagy, a family medicine physician who was born in Wichita, Kan., most recently has served St. John Health System in Tulsa, Okla. as Senior Vice President St. John Health Network. Prior to that, he served in several leadership positions at Via Christi Health in Wichita, including President and CEO for Via Christi Clinic and Senior Vice President of Physician Services.

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