Tag Archives: NYHQ

New York Hospital Queens’ newly installed $1.5M robot to introduce more electronic medical recording

| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

To keep up with the health industry’s shift to electronic medical records, the New York Hospital Queens’ (NYHQ) pharmacy department is turning to a robot.

The pharmacy department moved in February to the basement level of the institution on Main Street and Booth Memorial Avenue to make room for the enormous, new $1.5 million tablet-dispensing robot, called a Pill Picker.

The new department doubled in size to 4,500 square feet and was built around the glassy machine, which stores and distributes medicine, and by June will be utilized to keep track of patient drug usage through a barcoding system.

“At least 10 percent of our patients will be barcoded at the bedside by the end of June,” said Alex Melchert, director of pharmacy at NYHQ. “What this technology gives us, once we implement the barcode aspects of it, is [for example] it will allow us to look at how many times a potential near miss has occurred. And then use that information to improve the work flow.”

The Pill Picker cuts down on time and human error in preparing the drugs, because in the past, pharmacy technicians would have to manually check and separate thousands of pills for numerous patients a day and use a paper system to verify the drugs.

Now technicians scan and load drugs into secure containers, which are checked by pharmacists and then inserted into the robot. The pill picker separates the tablets into a nest of small bags that contain one pill each. The robot can hold about 56,000 bags of drugs.

The machine scans barcodes on the small bags to identify errors, and scans the bags for damage. The robot also tracks the loaded drugs and knows the right drugs to dispense for each patient. It also knows when the department is low on specific drugs and needs to order more.

In June, when distributing drugs to patients, nurses will scan the barcodes on the small bags, the ID wristbands of the patients at their bedside and their own IDs, and the information will be submitted electronically.

“This is the future of our profession,” Melchert said. “There is no doubt in my mind that from a safety perspective we are at the forefront of medication management in hospitals.”




Cosmos team up with NY Hospital Queens to educate about sports injuries

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy New York Hospital Queens


New York Hospital Queens (NYHQ) teamed up with the New York Cosmos to educate players, coaches and parents about sports injuries to ensure young players are safe on the field.

Players and coaches were on hand for a press conference held at NYHQ on August 19 to officially announce this, and that NYHQ will be the official hospital of the rebooted Cosmos franchise.

“[The goal is to] play for a long time, play safe and enjoy sports,” said Dr. Alexander Golant, who specializes in orthopedic surgery and sports medicine for NYHQ.

The Cosmos, which played their first professional game since 1985 on August 3, and NYHQ are planning to spread awareness about sports injuries to athletes around the borough with wellness clinics in the fall.

At the clinics athletes, parents, coaches and trainers will learn about certain injuries and how to prevent them. Dates and times for the clinics have yet to be announced.

As a part of being the official hospital of the Cosmos, NYHQ will have direct involvement with the team as well. The hospital will provide game day physician coverage for home and away games and have detailed plans to take care of any type of medical issue that may come about during a game.

“The doctors have been great,” said Carlos Mendes, Cosmos defender and native New Yorker. “They have been [checking in] with us on a weekly and early basis.”

The medical attention isn’t just special to the soccer club. The hospital believes it gives its patients the same amount of care as it does for the Cosmos, according to Dr. Justin Classie, director of sports medicine for NYHQ.

“We treat everyone as a professional athlete,” Classie said. “Our goal is keeping everyone active, regardless of their level of competition.”



Star of Queens: David Dolan, Community Advisory Committee, New York Hospital Queens

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

David Dolan

COMMUNITY SERVICE: David Dolan currently serves on the Community Advisory Committee of New York Hospital Queens (NYHQ). The body is dedicated to advising the hospital in terms of meeting the needs of the community and reaching out to all the different constituents.

Dolan is also a Eucharistic minister at his local parish, Holy Family Parish. In addition to his ministerial responsibilities, he has also been the chair of the pastoral care department of NYHQ for five years, providing religious services to patients.

BACKGROUND: Dolan has been helping people for as long as he can remember, and describes it as the most important element of his entire life, both personally and professionally.

“If I could summarize my whole life’s objective in one word, it’s empathy,” he said.

Dolan has also always been very concerned with fairness and justice, and volunteer work has been the main focus of his life for the past 35 years. He works extensively with children, and believes that the meaning of life is to be kind, considerate and passionate to the people around us, whoever they may be.

FAVORITE MEMORY: Last summer, Dolan met a man from Ireland in his parish. One of the man’s friends told Dolan he was interested in a gym membership while he was in town. Dolan was more than happy to get the man a membership at his gym, and the two became close friends.

After the man returned to Ireland, he contacted Dolan about a Brooklyn friend’s relationship troubles. Dolan himself contacted the friend in Brooklyn and provided advice about the relationship.

“I was just so glad I could help,” he reminisced.

BIGGEST CHALLENEGE: Although Dolan prefers to use the word “opportunities” rather than “challenges,” he admits that he sometimes has to remind himself to be patient.

“I think everybody in this world is somewhat challenged from a patience standpoint,” he said. “If we just give things a little time, things will work themselves out. It may not be how we expected them to, or even how we wanted them to, but they’ll work out.”

INSPIRATION: “My inspiration is twofold,” Dolan said. “First, going back to the religious capacity, I’m part of the Secular Franciscan Order. It isn’t a priesthood or a sisterhood, but it’s an order that tells us that learning the Gospel isn’t enough. We need to live it. I think that the more we think along the lines of living for others, the better. We need to focus externally and be compassionate towards everyone else.

“My second inspiration is my mother,” he said. “She was always upbeat throughout her difficulties, and she was never cynical or regretful. She was also always very compassionate to people around her.”




NYHQ ranked tops in maternity six years in a row

| MKirk@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Mitchell Kirk

For the sixth year in a row, New York Hospital Queens (NYHQ) was awarded the Maternity Care Excellence Award from HealthGrades, a national health care rating company.

During a ceremony in the hospital’s lobby, NYHQ received the top two rankings given by HealthGrades for maternity care — the Excellence Award for being in the top 10 percent of ranked hospitals and the five-star rating for being in the top 15 percent.

“Awards are very important, particularly when you win one six times in a row,” said NYHQ president and CEO Stephen S. Mills. “Five stars from HealthGrades is a remarkable feat.”

HealthGrades currently rates maternity care for hospitals in 19 states based on several different criteria, including infant mortality rates and the number of complications that arise from deliveries. The information is evaluated from patient records by doctors and biostatisticians.

The ceremony garnered an appearance from Assemblymember Grace Meng, whose two sons were born at the hospital.

“I’ve had firsthand experience in how much this hospital deserves this award and I’m proud to represent it,” Meng said. She went on to describe giving birth at NYHQ as “an amazing experience,” praising it particularly for the orientation program it provides for new parents.

Members of the hospital’s staff said they plan on performing just as well in the future.

“We will continue to strive for a seventh time,” said Mills. Then, addressing the hospital staff sitting before him, he said, “Everybody in front of me deserves praise for the jobs that they do.”

Dr. Gary Eglinton, chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology, who accepted the award, agreed with Mills’ remark.

“It’s a matter of continuing to do more of the same,” Eglinton said, “as all members of the team particularly maintain focus on the patient and continue to provide safe, quality care.”


NYHQ celebrates ER expansion

| sarahyu@queenscourier.com


New York Hospital Queens (NYHQ) just keeps growing.

On Monday, June 25, hospital administrators and elected officials such as Senator Toby Stavisky, Borough President Helen Marshall and Councilmember Peter Koo proudly cut the ribbon to celebrate the completion of the latest expansion of the emergency room.

Earlier this year, NYHQ celebrated the opening of its Urgent Care Center, which allowed the emergency department to expand community access to health care by making more beds available.

HEAL-NY (Health Care Efficiency and Affordability Law for New Yorkers), a state grant-funding program that supports the restructuring of New York’s health care system, funded the expansion of the emergency room and the completion of the Urgent Care Center for the hospital.

“We’re very fortunate to be able to open this emergency component and we were very fortunate to receive HEAL-NY money for this,” said NYHQ president and Chief Executive Officer Stephen S. Mills. “We try to take advantage of opportunities to provide more access for the population that needs it.”

To go along with the additional space, Marshall is giving NYHQ $300,000 from her capital budget toward the purchase of essential patient care equipment.

“We have increased the number of inpatient beds, have expanded community access to ambulatory care and opened a new urgent care center and today we cut the ribbon,” Marshall said. “I’m thankful to have this medical institution in the borough of Queens and I’ve continued to show my support and appreciation by awarding funding through my capital budget.”


NYHQ celebrates life

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

NYHQ 02w

Curtis Sliwa, radio personality and founder of the Guardian Angels, recalled being shot four times in 1992, then he told of his more recent struggle — prostate cancer.

Sliwa was the keynote speaker at the New York Hospital Queens (NYHQ) Celebration of Life, which sought to bring together cancer survivors who were once patients of the hospital and are either in, or on their way to being in, remission.

The event featured cancer information talks from some of the hospital’s doctors on how far treatment has come, along with tales from survivors.

AN emotional Helena Falletta, who only three weeks ago had surgery for stage-4 lung cancer, told the auditorium of fellow survivors about her several bouts with different cancers and how the staff at NYHQ had been there every step of the way.

“Since 2010, I have been fighting every day of my life,” she said.

Janice Zaballero, who survived her bought with breast cancer about 15 years ago and now works to help those who cannot afford screening or treatment, also spoke about the strength every one of the survivors had in making it through treatment.

“And I say to all of you, we are amazing,” Zaballero said to a roar of applause.

Sliwa, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2010, said the disease was something men shy away from discussing. He encouraged all men age 40 and up to get PSA testing and be more open to discussing the disease.

Cancer center to become a reality at NYHQ

| sLieberman@queenscourier.com

New York Hospital Queens (NYHQ) has begun the five-year process that will culminate in the opening of a new cancer center.

The project was put into motion by a gala benefit on May 30 that raised $1 million towards the expansion of the center. The benefit honored Prabha and Kanak Golia who, in conjunction with Dr. George F. Heinrich, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, and his wife, Debra, spearheaded the movement.

“We would like a comprehensive center so that patients can have access to one location,” said Stephen S. Mills, president and CEO of the hospital.

The idea is to put the three modalities of cancer treatment (surgery, chemotherapy and radiation) under one roof so that patients will receive treatment in a more organized and expedient way.

In addition, the creation of the cancer center will bring new social workers and support structures for patients and their families. It will allow the hospital to generate clinical trials, fellowship programs and a major research program, as well as increase educational screenings for cancer prevention.

“We will have much more access to some of the latest and best drugs with the hospital system backing us,” said Dr. Barry Kaplan, NYHQ’s director of Medical Oncology.

Because of its location in the middle of Flushing, the hospital is faced with a unique variety of cancers needing to be treated. For example, it has created a center that is focused on the treatment of liver cancer, the most prevalent cancer among the Asian population.

“We want to give people the confidence that NYHQ is the place for them to get treatment,” said Golia.