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FALL 2015

Important Public Health Information – pg 2 Working Together to Support Community Urology / Changing Hospital Food Perceptions / Message from Board Chair and CEO – pg 3 Healthy Happenings – pg 4 For more information, visit:

A Rewarding Journey is Not Always Easy suggested forceps was the way to go to get her out,” said Aline. When a baby gets stuck in the birth canal they can have a reduced oxygen supply. If labour isn’t progressing or the baby’s safety depends on immediate delivery, forceps can be applied to the baby’s head to help guide them out of the birth canal. “He explained what could happen with the use of forceps - marks or scars on the face and possible deformation of the head. We told him he makes the call,” Myles said.

“The baby wasn’t crying or making any noises and I’m seeing it all …knowing what was happening and trying not to freak out,” said Myles Middleton, “But I can’t because she’ll freak out too.” “I remember the nurses being really supportive when the team was taking the baby away. I remember them saying ‘Just let her see the baby, let her see her for a quick second,’” said Aline Middleton. “And that tiny little second where I got to see her helped as much as it could - given the crisis of the moment.”

After Layla’s arrival, she was immediately taken by the team to another room for resuscitation. “We couldn’t cut the umbilical cord because they took her right away. I remember being hysterical,” Aline said. “But she wasn’t gone for long and when she was brought back to us she was breathing.” Although the forceps left some bruising and marks on Layla, the quick action of the team on the Women and Children’s unit ensured the best outcome in her high-risk delivery. “I remember Dr. Ade-Conde and the nurses were fantastic. They told us everything they were doing and explained everything that could happen and what couldn’t,” Myles recalled.

On Valentine’s Day 2015, Aline and Myles began the tough and distressing journey of their daughter Layla’s birth. After experiencing a difficult pregnancy, Aline’s labour was induced by her Obstetrician, Dr. Ade-Conde, as her birth was deemed high-risk. The following day her long and arduous labour experience began. “I was in labour 31 hours in total from when the induction process began until the birth at 4:02 a.m. Monday morning,” Aline said.

Layla was cared for in CKHA’s Special Care Nursery in the days following due to feeding issues. “About 12 hours after she was born she wasn’t eating, so they admitted her to the nursery and hooked her up to a feeding tube. All of the suggestions for her to latch and to eat just didn’t work,” said Aline. The Special Care Nursery provides Level 2 Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) services, allowing sick newborns to receive appropriate care closer to home.

During the delivery, Layla became stuck in the birth canal – this occurs when babies are unable to complete their journey through the birth canal to deliver. “She had stopped breathing and it was too late for a C-section. The doctor explained the options and

“When we walked back in there it was happy, all the colours and everything, it’s a happy floor. That’s what I thought when I saw the birds.”

“Little by little they were trying to get some food into her belly and it wasn’t staying …it was coming close to the weekend and we wanted to go home and take her with us,” Aline said. Myles and Aline were supported through CKHA’s Almost Home Program, which allows families to room-in with their baby in preparation for discharge with support from the care team. Due to some babies’ healthcare needs, parents may not have had the chance to room-in yet with their baby before leaving the hospital. At CKHA, families are encouraged to visit and participate in their babies’ care as much as they are comfortable with. After weaning Layla off her feeding tube, she was sent home with her parents and they were reassured of the continued support from staff. “All of the nurses welcomed the opportunity for us to call them. They made sure that we had what we needed and were very kind,” said Aline. Layla received a referral from her Paediatrician for follow-up care in the community after leaving the hospital. “During the delivery process she fractured some of the bones up near her shoulder so they sent us to the Children’s Treatment Centre of Chatham-Kent. We went there to do some exercises and they said she would outgrow it and she did.” Aline continued, “So right now there’s no issues other than a scar on her head and she is thriving.” Myles and Aline’s blended family were also welcomed to the Women and Children’s unit shortly after Layla’s birth. “The first day the kids wanted to be able to come here and be supportive, which I have to say the nurses were all fantastic with the visitors we had,” said Aline. It’s fitting that Layla was the first baby born on Family Day, February 16, 2015 in Chatham-Kent, as she is surrounded by a loving family and has five older siblings; four sisters and a brother. “They love looking after her and the boy, he has his own couple of moments with her too,” said Myles. Making the choice to stay in Chatham, Aline and Myles considered the benefits of delivering close to home. “We thought about the timeline and convenience, as well as Dr. Ade-Conde being here,” said Aline, “there was a winter storm that weekend too and we wanted to keep stuff in our own community if we could.” While not a part of their delivery experience, the family was pleased to see the new changes to the Women and Children’s unit. The refurbished space now features a design of birds and trees in vibrant colours and different sizes. “When we walked back in there it was happy, all the colours and everything, it’s a happy floor. That’s what I thought when I saw the birds,” said Myles. He concluded, “I can’t say enough about the hospital. I’ve seen a lot of nursing care over 20 years as a healthcare practitioner myself – the care here was more informative and it was comfortable.”







Important Information about

Public Health

CKHA is proud to partner with CK Public Health on health promotion and illness prevention.

CK Public Health is 1 of 36 health units in Ontario. Our work is guided by the Health Promotion and Protection Act (HPPA, 1990). The main goal of health units is to provide the 3 Ps, which are:


Lowering the risk of illness to the public by inspecting restaurants, day cares, spas, pools and other public places. Another job is to check for risks and dangers from environmental sources such as animal bites (rabies), mosquitos (West Nile Virus) and ticks (Lyme disease). For those who drink well water, we provide water testing.



Sharing information with schools, workplaces and the community on how to stay healthy (e.g. Health Fairs, Workshops and Presentations). We create and support public policies to keep our community healthy. (e.g. smoking bylaw, tanning bed legislation, bike lanes).

Reducing the spread of illness by monitoring, treating and immunizing against infectious diseases (e.g. flu and school immunization clinics, Sexually Transmitted Infection testing/treatment). We also work to decrease the number of preventable injuries (e.g. road and bike safety, falls prevention in the elderly).

The mission of CK Public Health is to build a healthy community. Having a healthy community lowers the demand on other health services (e.g. doctor’s office, hospitals, walk-in clinics). This allows easier access to services for those who need them most.


• Influenza is often called the “flu”. • Is a respiratory illness that is caused by a virus and can result in complications such as pneumonia, sinus infections and ear infections • The highest risk of complications occur in children under two years of age, adults over 65 years of age, pregnant women and people with medical conditions such as heart, lung, liver and kidney disease, diabetes and cancer • Over 90% of influenza deaths occur in people over 65 years of age

Signs and Symptoms of Influenza

• Influenza usually starts suddenly • Symptoms can include fever, headache, extreme tiredness/weakness, dry cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches • May present as diarrhea and vomiting in young children • Most people who get influenza are ill between two to seven days, however the cough and fatigue can last for several weeks

What To Do If You Have Influenza

• Stay home until you feel well. Healthcare workers who are ill should be off work for seven days or until they are symptom-free • Cough into a tissue or your sleeve. Discard used tissues and wash your hands. • Wash hands frequently using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub. • Do not share anything that goes in your mouth • Avoid visitors • See your health care provider if symptoms become worse • Choose one family member to care for the ill person. Pregnant women and people with medical problems should not provide care • Perform extra cleaning on frequently touched surfaces such as table tops, door knobs, telephones, and light switches


Prevention and Treatment

Yearly immunization against influenza is the best way to protect yourself and others from illness. When there is a good match between the vaccine and current influenza strains, the vaccine is 70-90% effective in preventing influenza in healthy individuals. In the elderly the vaccine is 60% effective in preventing pneumonia and hospitalization and 80% effective in preventing deaths related to influenza. The vaccine will provide protection against influenza about two weeks after receiving the vaccine. Those who receive the vaccine can still get influenza, but if they do, it is usually milder. An antiviral medication can also be prescribed by your health care provider to decrease the severity of your illness if you do develop influenza if it is caught early. Flu shots for the 2015-2016 seasons are available throughout the Municipality of Chatham-Kent at the following locations: • Family doctor and nurse practitioner offices • Family health teams • Community healthcare clinics • Participating pharmacies • Walk-in clinics • Various workplace clinics

Working Together to Support Community Urology Needs Chatham-Kent Health Alliance (CKHA) demonstrates its commitment to sustainable access to urology services through an innovative and collaborative model which supports a high functioning healthcare system for patients and families. Committed to high quality care, Drs. Singh, Martin and Ramirez, Urologists from Bluewater Health, are working together to support urology services along with CKHA’s Nurse Practitioner (NP), Corrine Pollard – who provides regular and non-complex urological care. Any local patient who requires the care of a Urologist has access to one of the Specialists from the Sarnia group, who also ensure regular on-call service coverage to support the needs of the hospital. To better support the community, on-site services at CKHA include Ambulatory Care clinics and cystoscopies, with the Urologists rotating their visits at CKHA each month. Dependent on the volume of referrals, additional visits by the Urologists may be required. Since the launch of CKHA’s on-site services, 25 to 35 patients are seen at each Ambulatory Care clinic during the Urologists’ visits to the hospital. Including new consults and those receiving follow-up care, approximately 135 to 180 patients from the community are seen each month at CKHA for urology care. Acting as CKHA’s resource and liaison, the NP regularly consults with the group in Sarnia and performs assessments to patients, helping expedite the Urologists’ care. CKHA’s NP also provides treatment for bladder cancer and hormone therapy to prostate cancer patients. Approximately 15 Chatham-Kent residents have received treatments for bladder cancer, which run for six consecutive weeks, preventing weekly trips to Sarnia for these patients. “Working with the Urologists’ over the past 10 months, I have had an opportunity to learn a lot from each one of them. They are talented surgeons and are passionate about providing the most up-to-date treatment for our patients’ urology concerns,” said Corrine Pollard, CKHA NP. Through this innovative and collaborative model of granting of physician privileges to the Sarnia Urologists, and the enhanced role of the NP, CKHA has put in place a solution to use the best resources to support essential patient care. This partnership allows CKHA to maintain its diagnostic role by providing cystoscopies and assessment clinics with bigger more complex procedures being done at Bluewater Health. Supporting the needs of both hospitals and advancing an inter-professional and collaborative model, this is a great example of how community hospitals can work together to create solutions to address patient care needs across geographical boundaries.

Changing Hospital Food Perceptions This past summer Chatham-Kent Health Alliance’s (CKHA) Nutrition Services Team began offering a Chef’s Special to patients on the Complex Continuing Care and Rehabilitation units. CKHA’s in-house Chef, Katie Machina, worked in conjunction with the dietitians, supervisors and front-line nutrition staff to develop menus that would offer variety and seasonal meal options to patients that tend to have longer stays in hospital. The standard two-week menu cycle can often get repetitive for patients that have complex nutritional requirements and can be an inpatient for upwards of six weeks. With meals being made from scratch, patients are enjoying dishes such as country-fried buttermilk chicken paired with garlic mashed potatoes and creamy coleslaw, finished off with a blueberry crisp for dessert. Succulent baked shrimp fettuccine topped with shaved parmesan and a side of garden greens dressed with raspberry vinaigrette and goat cheese is another option that gives patients new and fulfilling choices. Chef Katie and the Nutrition Services Team coordinate meals appropriately during the year, offering patients enjoyable options for each season. A recent offering of hearty beef and sweet potato stew accompanied by a warm biscuit and southern-style peach cobbler welcomed in the fall season. Although being away from home during the holidays can be difficult for patients, CKHA’s team is seizing opportunities to provide as much comfort as possible. Over the Thanksgiving weekend, patients were treated to a traditional meal of turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, vegetables and pumpkin pie. Patient feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, when the Chef’s Special premiered one patient exclaimed, “Ding! Ding! I’ll have that. All of it! Sounds great!” Upon finishing his meal another patient said to Chef Katie, “You must have been working on this since before breakfast, it was amazing!” To ensure that all patients’ special nutritional requirements are accommodated through allergies, texture modifications, sodium requirements and diabetic needs, Chef Katie dedicates a significant amount of time creating her specials to meet patients’ needs right on-site in CKHA’s kitchen. As an organization dedicated to patient satisfaction, CKHA’s Nutrition Services Team utilized previous patient satisfaction surveys as a baseline for launching the Chef’s Special and will continue to engage patients and families for feedback on the service. The team is excited about their ongoing work in revitalizing the menu for CKHA’s entire patient population – delivering compassionate, quality care at every opportunity.






Brenda Richardson, Chair, Alliance Board of Directors and Colin Patey, President & CEO

At CKHA, there’s always a challenge to be reshaped into an opportunity. These circumstances, which vary in scope or size, when paired with creative ideas of employees, often translate into impressive results. In fact, this issue showcases several examples of changes within CKHA that realize the potential of teams to drive innovative solutions that improve the patient experience. CKHA’s innovative regional delivery model for urology services reflects how optimizing the skill of an inter-professional team, combined with enabling technology, results in sustainable services. It delivers ongoing access to important clinical services across geographical boundaries. Today, local access to hospital-based urology services has gone from being at-risk to a stable and successful model that supports patient care in Chatham-Kent. When patient feedback suggested a need to reconsider food options, particularly for those in hospital for several weeks, CKHA’s Chef Katie seized the opportunity to serve up a new meal concept that challenges perceptions of hospital meals and leaves patients satisfied. The Chef’s Special is no longer just a menu option; it’s a new approach to improving the patient experience on the Complex Continuing Care and Rehabilitation units. In Healthy Happenings, the need for dedicated clinical learning space resulted in the creation of the Dr. Don Patterson Learning Centre for all of CKHA’s learners. An impressive and leading learning facility across southwestern Ontario, the space reflects CKHA’s commitment and investment in teaching and learning. Better still, the support of the Patterson Family and other donors, allowed the organization to also revamp its Library, which is adjacent to the Learning Centre, creating a cohesive learning hub at the Chatham Campus. Also in this section, readers will note that as part of an archive initiative and with the recent passing of the 70th Anniversary of the end of WWII, it was both interesting and rewarding to see that the local hospitals prepared and supported the war effort. Apparently, and while times have certainly changed, facing our challenges head on is part of this organization’s history. Like the Middleton family in our cover story, the journey for CKHA may not always be easy but it is rewarding. There are no shortages of obstacles that our hospital and healthcare system must overcome. It would be far too easy to simply accept that obstacles stop progress or to use them as excuses. Fortunately, that is not in our culture. At CKHA, we are proud to lead a team that accepts the effort to consistently treat our challenges as opportunities to apply new, innovative approaches. It is indeed our privilege to lead an organization that supports a culture that is transforming hospital care and our local healthcare system.



• Canadian College of Health Leaders National Energy and Environmental Stewardship Award • Jane Chamberlin Award from the Association of General Hospital Psychiatric Services – Paula Reaume-Zimmer • Western-Schulich Clinical Teacher-of-the-Year – Dr. Siva Devarajan • Champion of Telemedicine Award from Ontario Telemedicine Network – Dr. Ranjith Chandrasena

OVER 100

Patients, families and staff contributed to the new look and feel of the Women & Children’s Program.


During the war, hospital auxiliary groups donated to the Red Cross, war effort funds and purchased war bonds. Five members of the hospital’s medical staff and 17 graduates of the School of Nursing served in the Canadian Armed Forces.




Data from these hospitals in southwestern Ontario is now accessible via Clinical Connect, a secure, web-based portal which provides physicians and clinicians real-time access to patient electronic medical files across geographical/institutional boundaries.

First self-serve registration kiosk in Erie St. Clair Local Health Integration Network.




CKHA’s Critical Care Outreach Team (CCOT) brings critical care expertise beyond highrisk patients of the Intensive Care Unit to the bedside of all inpatients.


Over 150 people attended CKHA’s Stroke Survivor Congress in June.

At CKHA, we are very proud of the work we do and we believe that programs should be recognized when they have a positive effect in our community. These are just a few examples that show how working together can make our community a healthier one for all of us.

$100,000 Investment in state-of-the-art electrocardiogram (ECG) equipment to further support heart health.

Over 400 students annually will now have access to the Dr. Don Patterson Learning Centre.

Give Me Five!


300 Sigma Spectrum Infusion Pumps with ‘smart pump’ technology have been added to strengthen CKHA’s patient safety strategy.

Please welcome our new physicians: • Dr. Jason Back - Pathologist • Dr. David Miller - Family Physician • Dr. Indraneel Ghosh – Emergency Medicine Physician • Dr. George Jacob –Obstetrician/Gynaecologist • Dr. Tenzing Calden Sharngoe – Hospitalist


Please consider a donation to the Foundation of CKHA. Call 519-436-2538 or visit to make a gift in support of local healthcare today.

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The Alliance Newsletter - Fall Edition 2015  
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