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Commonwealth Health Corporation (CHC), parent company of The Medical Center, has received the 2014 Gallup Great Workplace Award which recognizes the best-performing workforces in the world. CHC is one of 36 organizations to receive the prestigious Gallup award this year.
“Employee engagement is one of CHC’s core strategic goals. It is not a one-time initiative but a culture that is woven throughout all aspects of our corporation,” said Connie Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Health Corporation. “We at CHC recognize that a highly engaged workplace means a better place for our employees to work and a better place for our patients to receive quality care.”
CHC began utilizing the consulting services of Gallup in 2008 and since that time has experienced significant gains in employee engagement. Results from a 2013 employee engagement survey of CHC’s employees, combined with a demonstrated link between engagement and business outcomes, qualified CHC to apply for the award.
“In order to maintain long-term growth and profitability, we must invest time, energy and resources into engaging our employees,” said Smith. “We have found that engaged employees improve overall patient care and help in managing the impact of declining reimbursements and financial challenges due to the disproportionate share of government subsidized care provided by our hospitals and other facilities.” Over the past six years, CHC has experienced reduced employee turnover, decreased patient complaints, increased employee donations to CHC’s charity care programs, and improved financial performance.
CHC will be presented the award during the Gallup Spring Summit on May 13-15, 2014 in Omaha, Nebraska. During the summit, Great Workplace Award winners including CHC will present the best practices they applied to their workplace and the improved business results they achieved through building an engaged workforce.
“These award-winning organizations set a new standard for workplace excellence,” said Dr. James Harter, Chief Scientist with Gallup. “They have proven track records for improving lives along with performance. The management tenets they practice have proven value in both thriving and struggling economies overall.”
About the Gallup and the Gallup Great Workplace Award
Combining more than 75 years of experience with its global reach, Gallup delivers forward-thinking research, analytics, and advice to help leaders solve their most pressing problems. Gallup knows more about the attitudes and behaviors of the world’s constituents, employees, and customers than any other organization. Gallup’s 2,000 professionals deliver services at client organizations, through the Web, and in nearly 40 offices around the world.
The Gallup Great Workplace Award recognizes the best-performing workforces in the world. Only organizations who meet specific criteria may apply for the award. Applicants’ results are compared across a workplace research database composed of millions of work teams in more than 100 countries. A panel of workplace experts assesses each application and selects the winners.
For the early detection of lung cancer in high risk individuals, The Medical Center now offers a lung cancer screening using low-dose computed tomography (CT). Screenings using low-dose CT can detect cancer early when it is most treatable.
A draft recommendation from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force suggests that adults who have no signs or symptoms of lung cancer but who are at high risk for developing lung cancer should be screened every year with low-dose CT. High risk is defined as people who meet the following criteria:
Heavy smoking is defined as a smoking history of 30 “pack years” or more. A “pack year” is smoking an average of one pack per day for one year. For example, someone is considered a heavy smoker if they smoke one pack per day for 30 years or smoke two packs per day for 15 years. Adults who meet the criteria above should also be asymptomatic for lung cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, the symptoms of lung cancer include:
A low dose CT scan is a test which utilizes x-ray technology to scan the body. CT uses low doses of radiation to produce a series of detailed pictures of the lungs. Unlike traditional x-ray, CT can more accurately identify early stage cancer when it is most treatable.
The cost of the scan is $125 and currently not covered by insurance companies. The fee is payable at the time of service. Only individuals who meet the criteria should be screened using low-dose CT. To check eligibility for the screening, individuals can call The Medical Center at 270-745-1199 or 1-800-231-9621 or talk with their physician. Low-dose CT scans can be scheduled at The Medical Center in Bowling Green, Scottsville, or Franklin, or at Western Kentucky Diagnostic Imaging. A physician order is required for the screening.
About Lung Cancer
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States and in Kentucky. According to the Kentucky Cancer Consortium, Kentucky’s death rate from cancer is 46% higher than the national rate. Over 3,500 people died from lung cancer in 2010. It is estimated that over 4,500 cases of lung cancer are diagnosed each year. Of those cases, 80% are diagnosed at a late stage.
The number one risk factor for lung cancer is smoking. It is estimated that about 85 percent of lung cancers are caused by smoking. In the United States, Kentucky has the highest rate of smoking.
The risk of developing lung cancer increases with age, with most cancers occurring in people age 55 and older. The risk of lung cancer also increases with the amount and length of time someone smokes.
Commonwealth Health Foundation has announced that contributions through the ECHO (Employees Contributing to Help Others) program has reached $1 million. The program was established in 2000 to enable employees of Commonwealth Health Corporation (CHC) to contribute to the Foundation which serves as the philanthropic arm of CHC.
“Employee giving is a powerful statement to our patients and community that the employees believe in our mission and are united in our commitment to help CHC improve the quality of life in the communities we serve,” said Connie D. Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Health Corporation.
Currently the ECHO program has more than 800 active employees participating through payroll deduction. This total includes employees of CHC and its subsidiaries.
Donations to the program can be designated to support Commonwealth Health Free Clinic and The Dental Clinic, the Hospitality House or both. Commonwealth Health Free Clinic provides free medical services to the working uninsured, while The Dental Clinic offers a low cost alternative to those in need of basic dental care. The Hospitality House is a “home away from home” that serves the family members and caregivers of seriously ill patients receiving treatment at The Medical Center and Commonwealth Regional Specialty Hospital.
The Medical Center at Franklin announced today the completion of its $4 million surgery expansion project. Renovation and new construction encompassing 9,700 square feet includes two operating suites, an endoscopy suite, a six-bed recovery unit and other surgical support services.
“Commonwealth Health Corporation and The Medical Center at Franklin are proud to once again broaden the availability of quality healthcare services to the residents of Franklin and Simpson County,” said Connie D. Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Health Corporation, the parent company of The Medical Center at Franklin. “Raising the level of healthcare with modern facilities and expanded services has been our goal since we acquired the hospital in 2000.”
“Enhancing our surgical services will have a major impact on the delivery of healthcare in Franklin and Simpson County,” said Clara Sumner, Chief Executive Officer of The Medical Center at Franklin. “Before the expansion, we were limited on the complexity of surgeries that could be performed at the hospital. Now with this new addition, physicians have a modern facility and equipment to perform an array of surgical procedures, reducing the need to refer patients out of Simpson County.”
The new expansion provides a more spacious and centralized area dedicated to surgical services and endoscopy. More complicated surgeries can be performed due to expanded space in the surgery suites for large, specialized equipment.
Earlier this year, general surgeon William Daniel, M.D. opened a practice in the Franklin Medical Pavilion on the hospital campus to expand local access to general surgery services. John Korba, M.D., general surgeon with Bluegrass Surgical Associates in Bowling Green, practices in Franklin as part of The Medical Center at Franklin’s Physician Specialty Clinics. Beyond general surgery, other specialties that comprise the hospital’s Physician Specialty Clinics including orthopaedic surgery, urology, and podiatry will be able to utilize the new surgical area.
Since Commonwealth Health Corporation acquired the Franklin-Simpson Memorial Hospital in April 2000, over $21 million has been invested in The Medical Center at Franklin including the surgery expansion project. Improvements have included 24/7 physician coverage in the Emergency Department, expansion of its diagnostic imaging services, construction of two medical office buildings and construction of a new 25-bed patient wing.
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