***Lady of the Sea publishes the free La Dame de la Mer NEWSLETTER each quarter and distributes it throughout the South Lafourche community, as well as surrounding areas from Central Lafourche to Grand Isle. For Marketing information, please contact LaVelle Chiasson with the Lady of the Sea Marketing Department at 985-325-8434.
|High Quality Health Care Defined|
As health care providers, we strive to deliver the highest qquality of care to our patients every day. When it comes to defining "high quality health care", though, we realize that opinions may differ. Healthcare quality in the United States is the subject of intense criticism today. Many view quality health care as the area where patient safety resides, and so quality is defined in terms of safety. Others view quality health care in terms of standards, for example, "the degree to which health services for individuals increases the likelihood of desired health outcomes and are consistent with current professional knowledge." When we consider defining quality healthcare with quality indicators, again, we are left to consider if it is painting the entire picture.
Through consistent patient safety initiatives, quality measurements and patient communication training of our staff, we at Lady of the Sea have defined our version of high quality health care to address our patients from both a safety and quality indicator perspective, while also incorporating their level of satisfaction with the care they received. If we are only concerned with your safety, and put in safety measures to address some concern, but we don't explain it to you so that you can play a role in your care, then we may not have met your needs for high quality care. If we make sure that we provide the proper protocols to meet the quality indicators in place that define high quality care, but you aren't treated with compassion in the process, then again, the definition of high quality care is limited.
Our safety measures and quality indicators routinely show the high quality of care we are providing here at Lady of the Sea. We've added our patient satisfaction scores and comments to further define high quality care at our facility. We regularly capture our patient's written comments on their patient satisfaction surveys and we share these with our staff members. We use the ratings and comments as a guide to know how well we are providing quality care, and if we are truly meeting the needs of our patients and their families. At Lady of the Sea, we truly deliver High Quality Compassionate Healthcare, Close to Home.
|What IS a Family Medicine Clinic?|
Some say Family Medicine is the original building block for healthcare in our community. It is the medical specialty that provides continuing, comprehensive health care for individuals and family members of all ages. The scope of family medicine encompasses all ages, both sexes, each organ system and every disease entity. With that said, who should use a family medicine clinic? Everyone!
Family medicine is the natural evolution of the historical medical practice. For thousands of years, general practitioners provided all of the medical care available. They took care of everything from colds to cancer, performed surgery and delivered babies. With World War II, specialization in medicine began to flourish, and the two decades following the war led to a number of specialties and sub-specialties, while the number of general practitioners declined dramatically.
Patients have always been concerned about continued and comprehensive healthcare, and that is the simplest definition of a family medicine clinic. The family physician provides personal and comprehensive healthcare, be it biological, behavioral or social. Part of the type of care prescribed is based on the knowledge of the patient in the context of the family and the community, emphasizing disease prevention and wellness. When a specialist is needed, the family medicine provider refers the patient to other specialists or caregivers, but remains the coordinator of the patient's health care. This prevents fragmentation of that care in both the outpatient and inpatient settings. The best reason for a Primary Care Provider is to coordinate all levels and sections of a single patient's care, so that all health information can be reviewed from the context of what is best for the patient overall, and not just in a single view.
The family physician serves as the patient's advocate in dealing with other medical professionals, third party payers such as insurance companies, employers and others and as such is a cost-effective coordinator of the patient's overall health services. Many family physicians have different skillsets and knowledge that comes from continuing medical education and experience dealing with patients. This constant growth in knowledge also extends to using new medical technologies as they become available.
The biggest benefit to the patients who use a family medical clinic is the continuum of care that comes from the patient - provider relationship over time, and how that relates back to the overall health and wellness of the patient. At Lady of the Sea Family Medical Clinics, we focus on providing the highest quality of healthcare in a personalized manner. Our providers come from our community - you may see them around the area with their own families. We treat our patients like family, because truly, each patient is one of our own. Click here to visit our clinic page for more information.
|Your Support, Your Trust, Our Vision|
PLEASE NOTE: THE ELECTION REFERRED TO IN THIS ARTICLE OCCURRED ALREADY. THE RESULT WAS THAT THE COMMUNITY VOTED "YES".
With the support of the community, Lady of the Sea General Hospital will become the primary provider of wellness, education and health services.
Lady of the Sea is asking the 10th ward community of Lafourche Parish to support our new clinic by voting "Yes" for the May 4, 2013 election when the voting public will have the chance to consider an increase of .2 mills in ad valorem taxes.
Lafourche Parish Hospital District #1 was established on February 3, 1953 by a group of community members who saw the need for a healthcare facility in the 10th ward. Our medical staff began in 1956 with a small group of caring, compassionate healthcare professionals who were dedicated to providing high quality patient care for those in our community. We have been supported by this community and its tax dollars ever since. A small 3.34 mills annually goes to the operations and maintenance of our facility each year. This amount equals to about 5% of our operating expenses annually.
This proposed modern medical clinic will be built on the site of our original hospital, between the current hospital building and the dialysis clinic. Through the years, as our facilities needed to be expanded and updated, we have come to the people of our community and they have supported our expansion. Most recently, when we built the new emergency room addition to our hospital, the 10th ward community supported us with the addition of .8 mills over 15 years.
The location of the new clinic is an important element to the success of the overall plan to improve healthcare services to our community. Easier access to ancillary services such as lab, radiology, MRI, cardiopulmonary, our wound care specialist and registered dietitian will all be ways to assist our healthcare providers with a quick, efficient plan of care for their patients. The new clinic will have electronic medical records onsite, which will allow for a complete view of each patient's past medical history, increased efficiency, and integration of healthcare information. The new clinic will take advantage of a central registration and support team area for the different providers that will be practicing medicine there. Because the layout in the new clinic is clearly thought-out with efficiency in mind for movement of patients, providers and equipment, along with updated exam rooms, our patients will benefit by receiving efficient and effective healthcare services.
In addition to the ancillary services, an on-site pharmacy will greatly benefit our community in two different ways. First, the "one stop" option to receive care and any prescriptions that you may need should help our patients in beginning their medications immediately after meeting with their physician and hopefully will assist them in being compliant with their medications and home instructions to lead to a better recovery from their illness. Also, as a 340-B provider, the pharmacy will be able to dispense some medications at a reduced cost for qualified prescriptions, which in turn will save our patient's money.
Within the new clinic, the current plan is to move two of our existing clinics - the Golden Meadow Family Medical Clinic, and the Cut Off Family Medical Clinic. The Cut Off clinic is only 2 miles from the proposed new clinic, while the Golden Meadow clinic is only 6 miles, and the central location would be best to provide care to our patients in the communities of Cut Off, Galliano and Golden Meadow. The new facility will save the hospital money spent on leasing and continuous upkeep on existing clinic facilities. The Larose Family Medical Clinic, along with Dr. Camille Pitre and her extenders and staff, will remain in the upper Larose community to provide healthcare to those patients who live in that area.
The medical staff at the two clinics will combine into one, and will include at least 2 family medical physicians and up to 8 Nurse Practitioners and Physician's Assistants. The clinic may also have other types of physicians and extenders in the future. The clinic will cover over 10,000 square feet of treatment area for our patients, which is a big upgrade in facilities for our clinics. We are expecting approximately 60 parking spaces at our clinic.
We ask for our community's support in continuing our vision of being the primary provider of wellness, education and health services in our community and continuing our mission providing high quality care in a personalized manner to those we serve.
Explaining Ad Valorem Taxes - Ad valorem taxes are paid based on property assessments. In our state, property taxes are classified as ad valorem taxes. In Louisiana, our tax rate is not stated as a percentage but rather as a millage. A mill is a thousandth of a dollar (for example, a dime is 1/10 of a dollar, a cent is 1/100 of a dollar, and a mill is 1/1000 of a dollar). According to our state laws, any person's property that is assessed at $75,000 or below may be exempt from having to pay ad valorem taxes on that property, depending on if the property meets certain criteria. For property assessed above the homestead exemption, when considering the addition of .2 mills, the average home in the 10th ward would see an increase of $10 per year, or 77 cents per month.
|Emergency Room Patient Satisfaction Scores Soar|
Lady of the Sea Emergency Room staff and physicians have been working hard to meet our patient's expectations of care. Not only are our nurses certified in emergency nursing, our physicians continue to pursue educational opportunities to keep current with trends in emergency medicine. Our staff and physicians are also trained in how to communicate effectively with patients and their families, knowing that communication can not only alleviate fear, it also builds trust and satisfaction with the care provided.
We recently were notified by Press Ganey, the leader in Patient Satisfaction surveys in the USA, that we had shown statistically significant improvement in the overall satisfaction scores of our emergency department. "We are very proud to have received this award," said Buffy Lafont, Emergency Department Director. "From an overall perspective, this award not only reflects the hard work of our ER staff, but also the ancillary departments that impact our patients each day, including lab, radiology, cardiopulmonary, registration staff and housekeeping. All of these employees are doing their best each day and putting our patients first in an effort to provide the highest quality of health care available."
From Don Werner, CEO of Lady of the Sea General Hospital:
For nearly seven years, as the CEO of this hospital, and another five years as the Quality Director, I've seen us continue to rise to the occasion and meet our patient's expectations of high quality healthcare in a personalized manner. It's with a feeling of both excitement for the future and pride in what we've accomplished that I announce my plans to retire on September 30, 2013.
I've always believed it's not the building, not the bricks or the equipment that makes a facility great, it's the people - the employees that make our hospital such a success. Anyone who leads a team of employees knows that the success that we've seen at our facility over these past seven years isn't because of the person sitting in the CEO's chair, but rather because of the great administrative team that surrounds me and the talented staff that are providing our patient care each day, as well as the departments that support the clinical staff.
The past seven years have been a great experience for me. I especially want to thank the community of South Lafourche for the trust they placed in me to run this hospital. I've always been proud to say that I worked at Lady of the Sea, and I wish them nothing but success in the future.
|We're Going To Run Some Tests.|
This common phrase is said over and over each day to millions of Americans seeking medical care. To determine a diagnosis or plan of care, laboratory tests and diagnostic imaging offer a physician insight into what is happening inside of the body. Our lab is accredited by COLA, an independent accrediting organization whose practical, educational standards have a positive and immediate impact on organizations. By participating in the COLA accreditation program, our laboratory and staff meet all Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) issued through the FDA under the Department of Health and Human Services as well as other regulatory requirements and act in accordance with Quality Systems to provide the best possible patient care.
Our radiology department is accredited by the American College of Radiology (ACR) in the following modalities: CT, Nuclear Medicine, MRI and Mammography. The accreditation program evaluates the qualifications of personnel, the quality control program, safety policies and image quality. By using a facility that is ACR accredited, the patient can be confident in knowing their radiology services will be completed safely and correctly by highly qualified personnel.
"All of our Medical Technologists, Medical Laboratory Technicians and Laboratory Assistants that are employed here at Lady of the Sea are licensed by the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners," says Wendy Duet, Medical Technologist and Laboratory Manager. "Our lab is staffed 24/7 with both Technical staff as well as Phlebotomy staff including additional staff on-call for emergency situations."
"Within the past couple of years, we have upgraded our radiology equipment to the highest level of equipment available," said Jason Lorraine, RT (R), RDMS, RVT and Radiology Manager. "Our staff is highly trained, patient-focused and on-site 24/7."
Our physicians rely on us to provide them with accurate, timely results, and we take their expectations very seriously. Our radiologists, Dr. Sharm 'El Buras and Dr. Jose' Rivero, work directly with our staff to provide the highest quality of imaging services available. Our pathologist, Dr. William Robichaux oversees all of our lab testing and results to ensure accuracy and timeliness. We offer exceptional quality in clinical services, while always considering the comfort and needs of our patients. Our lab and radiology departments truly deliver compassionate care, close to home.
|April is Donate Life Month|
Every year, Donate Life Louisiana state team dedicates its collaborative efforts to raising awareness for the need for registered donors. Consider registering as an organ, eye and tissue donor.
One organ donor can save up to 9 lives, restore sight to 2 people and enhance the lives of 50 more through tissue donation.
Fact: Your decision to donate will not interfere with life-saving medical care.
Fact: Anyone can potentially be a donor, regardless of age, race or medical history. Cancer, heart disease, diabetes, poor eye sight or cataracts will not prevent you from being a donor.
Fact: Organs, corneas and tissues are surgically removed and the donor is treated with the utmost dignity and respect. Donation does not prevent open casket funerals.
Fact: There is no cost to the donor or their family for donation. Lady of the Sea proudly participates as a Donate Life Louisiana partner. To register as a donor, visit www.DonateLifeLA.org, or stop by our hospital to register. Share your wishes about registering as a donor with your family, and sign up today!