hdhEnews issue: February 14, 2013

Inside this issue:

Hotel Dieu Hospital opens $20 million redevelopment project
50,000 patient visits set to transfer starting Feb. 19
Social media campaign supports eating disorders clinic at Hotel Dieu
Patients applaud expanding services at Hotel Dieu
Kudos for diabetes program at Hotel Dieu
Donors champion eye care at Hotel Dieu
Know a good candidate for Patient Experience Advisor?
Commemorate, celebrate, thank, reach into the future

Hotel Dieu Hospital opens $20 million redevelopment project

redevelopment projectHotel Dieu Hospital officially unveiled 36,000 square feet of newly developed clinic space on Feb. 6, the culmination of a $20 million redevelopment project that will advance the hospital’s role as a provincial leader in ambulatory health care.

“We’re thrilled that we can now make this space available to patients and families,” said Sherri McCullough, Chair of the HDH Board of Directors, as she welcomed hospital leaders, staff, donors and dozens of invited guests in one of the new spaces, the 12,000-square-foot Jeanne Mance 5 clinic.

“Look around and you see bright, beautiful new clinical areas that are not only welcoming and supportive for patients and their families, but also highly functional and flexible for staff, physicians and learners. You see a setting designed to support the most innovative and excellent practices in ambulatory care.”

Started in October 2010, the multi-million dollar construction project created two floors of clinical suites, procedure rooms for urological testing and treatment, laboratory space for pulmonary function testing, an elevator tower, and renovations to the main lobby and physical plant department.

With the completion of the capital redevelopment project Hotel Dieu is set to receive up to 80 new outpatient clinics scheduled to begin transferring from Kingston General Hospital in mid-February. When the transfer wraps up in mid-March, the hospital will see its patient volumes jump by about 50,000 additional patient visits per year.

“We’re grateful for the funding provided by the Ontario government for this project and we owe a special debt of gratitude to each and every donor—big and small—who contributed to it,” said Dr. David Pichora, the hospital’s Chief Executive Officer.

“Close to $6 million of the funding for this project came through community donations raised through the University Hospitals Kingston Foundation’s Together We Can campaign. As such, our new clinical space is truly a community asset—built with and for our patients and families.”

“The consolidation of new clinics, labs and procedure rooms under one roof at Hotel Dieu is great news for Kingstonians and for our region. This translates into greater convenience and comfort for patients and their families. For caregivers, the new space will provide an environment geared to facilitating the highest level of safe and efficient patient care, teaching and research,” said John Gerretsen, MPP, Kingston and The Islands.

“How wonderful for the patients of Hotel Dieu to be able to access this tremendous new space and the services provided there,” said Donna Segal, Board Chair, South East Local Health Integration Network.

“Congratulations to the hospital for developing this facility, which will surely transform their capacity to deliver the right health care in the right place at the right time—for today and into the future.”

redevelopment project

Watch the opening ceremony here.


50,000 patient visits set to transfer starting Feb. 19

HDH exam roomWith its major redevelopment project completed, Hotel Dieu is opening its doors to about 80 specialized outpatient clinics that will start to transfer from Kingston General Hospital to Hotel Dieu on Feb. 19. The shift translates into a whopping 50,000 new patient visits annually.

The 80 clinics will be relocating over a three-week period:

  • Tuesday, Feb. 19: Endocrinology, Hematology, Internal Medicine (Urgent), Neurosurgery
  • Monday, Feb. 25: Thoracic Surgery, Rheumatology, Infection & Immunology, Neurology
  • Monday, March 4: Anticoagulation Management Service
  • Monday, March 11: Pulmonary Function Testing Lab, Respirology, Cystoscopy, Urology.

For most clinics, only patients are moving to Hotel Dieu. Physicians’ offices will remain at KGH, so physician contact information (e.g., phone, fax, email) will remain the same.

To help orient them to the change in hospital location, patients have been receiving a Hotel Dieu Hospital Planning Your Visit brochure with their appointment slips for their upcoming visits to Hotel Dieu. The brochure provides helpful information about clinics, what to bring to a visit, directions, parking, services/amenities, contact numbers and more.

Patient and families can also call an information hotline at 613-549-6666 ext. 7600 or 1-800-567-5722 ext. 7600 for the latest news on the clinic transfers from KGH to Hotel Dieu.


Social media campaign supports eating disorders clinic at Hotel Dieu

Facebook likeThe EveryBODY’s Beautiful project has new twist this year—a social media campaign that runs throughout February to turn the spotlight on eating disorders, improving body image and raising funds for the eating disorders clinic at Hotel Dieu. Under the guidance of project founder Pam Fountas, the EveryBODY’s Beautiful Facebook page is being updated daily in February with stats about eating disorders, tips on improving body image and ideas on learning more self-compassion. The site also links users to the Adult Eating Disorders Clinic at Hotel Dieu.

Along with loads of information and inspiration, the campaign provides lots of opportunities for supporting the Hotel Dieu clinic, including an energy medicine session on Feb. 28 (with 100 per cent of the proceeds going to the clinic), nifty T-shirts from Project brEAThe, which promotes eating disorder awareness, prevention and recovery; a by-donation yoga class on Feb. 22; and direct donation to the University Hospitals Kingston Foundation.

The first EveryBODY’s Beautiful Charity Event was launched in Kingston in February 2011. The past two years in February, on an evening during Eating Disorder Awareness week, our community came together for tons of fun, raising eating disorder awareness and fundraising. Over those years the event raised more than $15,000 in support of the Eating Disorders Clinic at Hotel Dieu Hospital.

Please visit the EveryBODY’s Beautiful Facebook page this month and help spread the word about eating disorders.


Patients applaud expanding services at Hotel Dieu

Three new or expanding programs dedicated to helping people living with urgent mental health issues, chronic pain and obesity testify to Hotel Dieu Hospital’s continuing growth as the hub of specialized outpatient care in this region.

At a Feb. 4 “Excellence in Ambulatory Care” event presented by the University Hospitals Kingston Foundation and sponsored by Bell, donors heard about a newcomer at Hotel Dieu—the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Urgent Consult Clinic. It was launched in October 2012 to assess and support youth ages 12 to 17 with urgent mental health issues such as suicidal or violent behaviours, kids who threaten violence and those who have control issues due to alcohol or drugs. The clinic receives four to six urgent referrals every day from hospital ERs, schools and community agencies in the region. At the three-month mark, it already averages 42 new assessments each month, a jump from the original goal of 29, says social worker Nicholas Axas.

Axas reports that 39 per cent of the clinic’s referrals are males and 61 per cent are female. And he notes one striking statistic that has emerged since the clinic opened: about 47 per cent of the kids referred talk about bullying and teasing as the reason for thinking about suicide or for experiencing depression or feelings of wanting to hurt people.

Axas leads an urgent consult team that includes a psychiatrist, nurse and medical residents. Their primary objective, he says, is to reduce the time youth and families spend waiting for help in the ER. “We don’t want kids with urgent mental health concerns sitting for hours in a hospital,” he explains. “We want to get families the rapid access to the services they need to help their child, and we also want to prevent and decrease admissions to the hospital.”

The expert team brings a comprehensive knowledge of the treatment options and community resources available for the family, says Axas. “We assess the child and determine the best way to help. Our intervention can vary from brief follow-up sessions after that initial assessment to the more intense step of hospital admission.”

In these early days of the clinic—which includes lots of outreach to school boards, community agencies and the media—the response is already positive, says Axas. “We’ve done an informal survey with area ERs and the feedback is that this new clinic is working. It’s helping to decrease the number of youth waiting in the ER and diverting them to more appropriate supports. That’s good news for families in this region.”

pain talkThe chronic pain management clinic at Hotel Dieu has just expanded its services to assess and treat more patients with chronic pain. According to Dr. Scott Duggan, an anesthesiologist with the clinic, pain is the most common reason people seek medical help. “Close to 30 per cent of Canadians deal with chronic pain on a regular basis,” he says, “and one in three people reports the pain prevents them from maintaining an independent lifestyle. We see patients who have really have tried to get better and are becoming quite frustrated and burdened by chronic pain.”

That was the case with Fran Denby, a clinic patient who suffered with debilitating low back pain that left her feeling exhausted and hopeless even though she is by nature an optimistic person.

“I couldn’t even walk down the hallway in my house without pain. Unless and until you’ve experienced severe chronic pain it’s hard to imagine how it can affect what you can and can’t do,” she says.

The difference in her life is profound, she says, since being treated in the pain clinic. “Taking a shower is no longer an agonizing ordeal, I can stand while making my lunch and I can walk across the street with just a cane— small things for some people but giant steps for me,” she says. “I have my life back, which is good because I have a long bucket list!”

Focused on improving quality of life, reducing pain and improving functional ability, the clinic aims to optimize—and sometimes to reduce—medication. “Most patients want to reduce opiates, because they’re no longer useful or they make the person feel worse,” says Duggan.

Also supporting patients is a new fluoroscopy suite where x-rays help physicians to inject medication more precisely into a patient’s painful area. Patients also benefit from the clinic’s collaboration with services such as physiotherapy, surgery, family medicine, mental health and psychology.

It all adds up, says Dr. Duggan, to limiting trips to the ER for those in chronic pain and improving their level of care.

Bariatric Regional Assessment and Treatment CentreAlso expanding its services at Hotel Dieu is the new Kingston Bariatric Regional Assessment and Treatment Centre, opened in April 2012 and already recording just over 1000 referrals, says Nurse Practitioner Kristine Canty. The clinic supports patients seeking weight loss through surgery by providing pre-surgical assessment and post-operative follow-up; the surgery itself is done in Ottawa or Toronto. Patients are referred by their family doctor through the Ontario Bariatric Network and need to meet various medical and psychological criteria, including strong motivation and a willingness to make lifestyle changes.

“Bariatric surgery is wonderful because it can mean significant weight loss, improvement or remission of other diseases such as diabetes and an improved quality of life,” says Canty.

“But it’s a lifelong process. The patient needs to make permanent changes and to be willing to stick to those changes.”

Canty works with a team that includes a medical director, nurses, dietitians, social worker and occupational therapist. Each week, about 30 patients go through an orientation session to learn about weight loss surgery and what’s involved before and after the procedure. Those that opt to proceed then go through physical exams and medical work-ups to ensure they are well prepared for surgery.

“The needs of our patients are driving some quick growth in the program,” says Canty. “We’ve now introduced a clinic to help patients with diabetes achieve the optimal blood sugar levels prior to their procedure, as well as a sleep apnea clinic where a specialist is helping patient to improve their respiratory function prior to surgery.”

“Another exciting development occurs February 14, when we start a medical management program for patients who don’t want surgery or don’t meet the criteria for it. This is a 26-week program based on patients using a protein drink for several weeks before slowly integrating food back into their diet and changing their eating habits.”

The only bariatric assessment and treatment centre between Toronto and Ottawa, Hotel Dieu’s program is being applauded by patients relieved to avoid travelling long distances for surgical preparation and follow-up. And, says Canty, patients and families are pleased to see the program expanding and growing.

Follow this link to watch videos of these three presentations.


Kudos for diabetes program at Hotel Dieu

Congratulations to the Diabetes Education & Management Centre for again successfully completing the Canadian Diabetes Association Standards Recognition Program. This review indicated the Centre “delivers superior diabetes education services for people in the communities it serves.” The national recognition stands for the next 5 years and marks the second time the DEMC has achieved the honour.


Donors champion eye care at Hotel Dieu

eye examThe ophthalmology expansion at Hotel Dieu got a big boost recently when Kingston’s Robinson Foundation announced that it would share a five-year, $150,000 pledge to the University Hospitals Kingston Foundation. The pledge has helped bring the ophthalmology project within $40,000 of its $900,000 goal and will result in a much-needed expansion of the clinic that provides 75,000 patient visits every year. Now underway, the Ophthalmology Lane Expansion Project consists of building five new ophthalmology lanes, a diagnostics space and waiting area.

“We work hard at providing top quality, world-class eye care,” says Dr. Martin ten Hove, Head of Ophthalmology at Hotel Dieu.

The generous donation will be split equally with Kingston General Hospital, which will use its portion to help create a Clinical Investigation Unit (CIU). “We’re delighted to champion research and patient care in Kingston’s hospitals,” said Foundation trustee Michael Robinson when announcing the pledge.

To watch the gift announcement video, click here.


Know a good candidate for Patient Experience Advisor?

Patients and family members see, hear and feel things that should be part of our conversation about how we provide excellent patient and family-centred care at Hotel Dieu. That’s why we’re looking for Patient Experience Advisors.

A Patient Experience Advisor will help us to understand what matters most to patients and families when they come through our doors. They have experiences as patients and/or as family members of patients. They can participate in a variety of roles such as sitting on the Patient & Family Council, taking on public speaking to help educate others about patient and family-centred care, working on special projects or participating in committees.

For a fuller description of this role, along with an application form, click HERE.


Commemorate, celebrate, thank, reach into the future

honour a caregiverYou or a loved one has received outstanding care at Hotel Dieu Hospital, and you want to say thank you in special way. Here’s how. Consider recognizing that caregiver or group of caregivers with a donation to the hospital in their honour. You can make a gift to acknowledge a physician, nurse, volunteer or other caregiver who made a difference—or even an entire patient care team. They will be informed of your gift (we will not disclose the amount) and will receive a certificate that may be displayed in their office, care area or home.

Your hospitals heal, help and give hope to thousands of people like you every day. Your gift will be used for new technology and equipment, staff education, research and much more. It will provide better health care to the entire community and to our region.

To make a gift online, please visit www.uhkf.ca. For more information, contact University Hospitals Kingston Foundation, 4-55 Rideau St., Kingston, ON K7K 2Z8, 613-549-5452.