Dr. Andrew Fields receives overall St. Luke Physician Recognition Award
Nominations of Andrew Fields, DO, for the overall St. Luke Physician Recognition Award are filled with anecdotes of him living Via Christi Mission and Core Values in his work as chair of medicine and primary hospitalist for Via Christi Hospital on St. Teresa.
Jennifer Voth, RN, 3 East at the hospital on St. Teresa, described Fields calming a man in the ICU who was obviously upset and searching for answers about his wife's condition. Even though he was not the patient's doctor, after helping calm the man Fields called the surgery team and spoke with the ICU nurse on the spouse's behalf.
Letter after letter mentions Fields making his patients "his first priority," whether they are "the first patient to begin the day at 8 am or the 25th patient at 8 p.m and he is physically exhausted," wrote Michelle Gough, PA-C. Fields will answer the same questions and explain in multiple ways to make sure patient and family understand the diagnosis and likely outcomes. "He puts himself on his patient's level . . . so the patient feels he/she is being treated fairly and seen as an equal."
Lorraine Smith, charge nurse on 3 East at the hospital on St. Teresa, wrote that even after 12-14 hours, Fields treats patients and their families with the respect and dignity they deserve.
Another letter says Fields "makes himself readily available as much as possible for the nursing staff, which directly correlates to his patients' care." He also is "very intelligent and a good problem solver."
For example, he collaborated with Laboratory in developing a system allowing early lab draws in the ICU to be coordinated with every-four-hour nursing assessments so patients are wakened less often, and supported later morning lab draws for patients in the general medical unit, wrote Melissa Evraets, RN, MSN, administrative nursing director at the hospital on St. Teresa. He also supported adoption of the nurse-driven catheter protocol and new processes related to core measure compliance, and works closely with Pharmacy on medication protocols and compliance with evolving medication practices.
Fields is consistently mentioned in Press Ganey verbatim responses as "compassionate," "kind," "highly skilled" and "knowledgeable," Evraets wrote, adding that he "sits in a chair at the patient's bedside for each consultation" and "requests uninterrupted time with his patients," truly serving "as a healing presence."
Leigh Cohlmia, Marketing coordinator of physician relations at the hospital on St. Teresa, quoted a letter from the family of a 90-year-old patient whom Fields cared for in the last days of his life.
"We can't tell you what a gift that was," they wrote, including Fields' gently validating the family's decisions and verifying their loved one's death.
". . . we know it is not easy. He could have done his job and left the room but he did not. He sat down and talked with us, provided comfort, and asked us about the treatment (he) had received and our experience with the staff.
"Again we were astonished by yet another provider with such a gentle heart."
Fields will receive the overall St. Luke Physician Recognition Award at a brunch following a 10:30 am Mass Sunday, Oct. 16, in Chapel of the Sorrowful Mother at Via Christi Hospital on St. Francis.
2011 St. Luke Core Value, Resident Recognition Award winners
L. Christine Faulk, MD
Dr. L. Christine Faulk was nominated for the Excellence award by Sofia Jaramillo, charge nurse for the Medical Intensive Care Unit at Via Christi Hospital on St. Francis, and Missy Hampel, MICU director, on behalf of MICU staff. The two have worked closely with Faulk as a hospitalist and as an attending for residents at Via Christi.
"She has demonstrated time and time again that she is an excellent communicator and gifted teacher," they wrote, "the perfect model." Able to "make complex subjects understandable," Faulk can "motivate her students to strive for excellence," and nurses "to strive for and achieve exceptionally high standards of patient care."
"Excellence is her second name," wrote Judy Dusek, ARNP, manager, Clinical Nurse Specialists. Faulk, "an excellent physician in internal medicine" and associate professor at University of Kansas School of Medicine-Wichita, is chair of the Glucose Control Committee at Via Christi and has worked hard to standardize many house order sets. Through her internal medicine rounds, she has identified a variety of needs and made recommendations that led to patient initiatives after gathering and evaluating data.
All nominators agree that Faulk demonstrates the utmost respect for everyone with whom she works and embraces others' input on patient care. When dealing with patients and family members, she demonstrates a caring attitude by not rushing, speaking kindly and answering all questions before leaving the patient's bedside, wrote Dusek.
"I have watched the patients as she approaches them and they love to see to her visit."
David G. Lehr, MD
"The nurses here all love working shifts with Dr. Lehr," wrote Misty Falco, RN, clinical nurse manager for Emergency Services at Via Christi Hospital on St. Teresa, nominating David Lehr, MD, this year's winner for Stewardship. Falco quoted Bill Robben, RN, who said Lehr is "always showing compassion to patients, and always wants to educate other health care workers," and Dan Young, RN, who said Lehr "cares for his staff as well as patients."
Lehr appears unaffected by the rush of emergency department work and "always takes time to sit down with patients . . . gives them his full attention . . . listens attentively to each and every person . . . and treats (everyone) similarly."
He cares responsibly for all resources, including those who work around him. He orders only tests that are necessary and makes certain no hospital resource is overused. He is generous with patients and staff. One nurse recalls Dr. Lehr, after dismissing a patient who had no ride home, pulling $20 from his pocket to pay cab fare for the patient.
"Dr. Lehr's reverence for each and every person makes him a highly valued and trusted presence," wrote Chaplain David Rumback of Via Christi Hospitals on Harry and St. Francis. "Patients and families regularly tell me how grateful they are for Dr. Lehr's care . . . which leaves no doubt in their minds that they have been approached and treated with patience and respect to an extraordinary degree."
Raymond W. Grundmeyer, III, MD
The Trauma team at Via Christi Hospital on St. Francis nominated Raymond Grundmeyer III, MD, for the Excellence award. "The trauma team appreciates all he does for patient care."
Kris Hill, director of Trauma Services at the hospital, began the team's nomination pointing out that the neurosurgeon takes trauma call and shares his skill, knowledge, drive and never-ending energy with residents and patients as he spends "countless hours in surgery and rounding on patients." He takes calls from residents at night, and he returns to the hospital if families have questions.
"No injury is too small for him to assess and he promptly sees all patients in a timely manner," something "not always seen with physicians who also have busy private practices," wrote Hill. Grundmeyer's timeliness positively affects length of stay and patient satisfaction, she added.
When speaking with families of patients who have head injuries they will not survive or spine injuries that forever alter their lives, "his compassion, promptness and availability" are "superior."
"Dr. Grundmeyer makes sure there are no gaps or holes in the neurosurgery call list, often covering open days himself at the last minute. He is willing to look at processes and protocols for the trauma patient that need adjusting; offering his expert recommendations that are reasonable to all. He is willing to step in and assist other neurosurgeons in consultation or with difficult cases."
Samantha L. Beck, MD
Dr. Samantha L. Beck receives the St. Luke Resident Award. "She just excelled at everything," wrote nominators Karon Giles, RN, ARNP, CNS, for Via Christi Burn Center, John Melick, RN, Burn Center director, staff members and members of the Burn Center Multidisciplinary Team.
Daily multidisciplinary rounds were not well attended when Dr. Beck began her rotation in July, but she was there every day at 8 am, even leading the rounds. By the end of her rotation at the end of August, 16 team members were attending - important because "patients in the Burn Center benefit from the daily expertise present at Multidisciplinary Rounds to develop our plan of care for each patient."
Her spirit of working to improve delivery of patient care to those in the Burn Center has had "a very positive impact on staff members and members of the Multidisciplinary Team," they wrote. "She
always listens to the nurse - we are a team."
She promoted patient safety by working with Burn Center staff, Health Information Management, Standard Register and Dr. R. Joseph Nold to modify a TSICU Attending Progress note for use in any adult ICU. The systems-focused note captures the same information every day, making it easier to note changes in a patient's condition, lab values and medications. "I don't want things to get missed," Beck said.
Finally, "Being part of the team also meant noticing a patient's tray just being delivered. She picked it up and delivered it to the patient."