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Winter 2018


IN THIS ISSUE News & Advancements ....................................................................................... 4 Surgeon honored as hero.................................................................................... 5 Awarding excellence.............................................................................................. 6 True blue..................................................................................................................... 7

24 Cardiology Update Conference at UAH 28 FREE Nutrition class at Madison Wellness Center RSVP required MARCH 2

Party in the Park Insanity Skate Castle Food trucks, music by Juice


“One Year Later,” TVGO and Cancer Committee survivor event and movie at UAH

Finger on the Pulsepoint.................................................................................. 17


FREE Nutrition class at Med Mall Wellness Center, RSVP required

Senior Horizons Happenings......................................................................... 18

16 Patient Safety Symposium

Helping seniors stay healthy ......................................................................... 21

27 Tasty Tuesday The Opioid Epidemic

New Medicare numbers coming.................................................................. 21

30 Doctor’s Day

Foundation: Out and about in our community...................................... 22


Outsmarting brain tumors................................................................................. 8 Code Six.................................................................................................................... 10 Sweet comfort and cuddles............................................................................ 15 Angel on the interstate..................................................................................... 16

BMW Brunch................................................................................................. 23

2-8 Scale Back Weigh-Out Week

Donor Spotlight: Young philanthropists........................................... 25


Senior Horizon’s After 5 Event, Supper Club at Mezza Luna


Infection Prevention and Control Symposium

Inpatient Hospice Dedication Ceremony......................................... 26 Societies of 1895 & 2012........................................................................ 27

On the Cover: The Waldrop sextuplets are pictured during a quiet moment in the region’s only Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children. To prevent identification mix-ups during delivery, the hospital’s “Dream Team” assigned each baby a color that corresponded with their birth order. The babies, Blu, Layke, Rawlings, Rayne, Tag and Rivers are proudly swaddled in their birth colors — the same order as the colors of a rainbow. Photo credit: Ashely Sargent Photography

All rights reserved. No material in this publication may be reproduced in any form without prior written permission from the publisher. Articles in this magazine are written by Huntsville Hospital professionals who strive to present reliable, up-to-date information, but no publication can replace the care and advice of medical professionals. Contact your physician when considering and choosing health care treatments. For more information on the editorial content of Source, please call Huntsville Hospital Public Relations at (256) 265-8317 or Huntsville Hospital Foundation at (256) 265-8077. Please contact us if you wish to have your name removed from the list to receive fundraising requests or other mailings supporting Huntsville Hospital Foundation in the future.

14 American Heart Association Heart & Stroke Walk 15 Say No to Obesity 4K in Valley Bend at Jones Farm 18 HIMSS Conference 28 American Heart Association Heart Ball MAY 10 The Huntsville Classic concert, featuring Jason Isbell 12 Golf Tournament at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Hampton Cove For a complete list of blood drives, health screenings, support groups and other community events, visit

Your Community Hospital We’re very fortunate to live in a community and region that is growing. The Huntsville/ Madison County metro area is blessed with resources that help us attract major industrial developments like the new Toyota Mazda plant. The plant is expected to employ up to 4,000 people when fully operational. Thousands of other jobs will be indirectly created in the years ahead as a result of this.

David Spillers, CEO

Our Mission Provide high quality care and services that will improve the health of those we serve. Our Vision To be one of the best health systems in America and consistently strive to provide clinical and service excellence. Our Values Integrity, Excellence, Innovation, Accountability, Compassion and Safety

Serving the health care needs of our community and region is what we do at Huntsville Hospital Health System, whether we’re taking care of lifelong residents or preparing for thousands of new families who will come to our community in the years ahead. Health care is a critical factor in the quality of life and in the economic development of a community. One of the most significant challenges in health care today is the need for more nurses. Our Health System employed 3,159 Registered Nurses (RNs) in Madison County alone, as of December 31, 2017. We believe that the continued growth of our community, along with the aging workforce, will keep this challenge as a top priority for us for many years. That’s why we are so pleased about our recently announced partnership with Calhoun Community College. With help from a $1,000,000 grant from Governor Kay Ivey, Huntsville Hospital is building a nursing simulation lab at Calhoun’s Huntsville campus. The simulation lab is the final piece in Calhoun’s ability to begin a new program that will graduate 48 nurses a year. Year after year, these additional RNs will have opportunities to join the local workforce in caring for you and your family. It’s win-win for everybody, especially our patients. Projects like the nursing simulation lab are great examples of government, education and health care working together to address the current needs of our communities, as well as the needs of the future. We look forward to the next generation of nurses joining our team of 13,000 staff members across the Tennessee Valley. It has been our privilege since 1895 to serve our community with advanced and compassionate health care services.

Source | Winter 2018


A HEART FOR HELPING Ryan Wong began volunteering at Huntsville Hospital during his freshman year at Grissom High School. Now a junior at UAB, he has since volunteered 900 hours at the hospital helping cardiologists. Wong was named the Outstanding Youth Volunteer of 2017 by the Alabama Hospital Association, a nonprofit group that represents more than 100 hospitals across the state. 10,000 MEMBERS AND COUNTING In recognition of reaching a milestone of 10,000 members, the Wellness Center is offering a free class, “Good Nutrition for Busy People,” taught by registered dietitians. Classes are Feb. 28 at the Madison Wellness Center and March 6 at the Medical Mall Wellness Center. To reserve your spot, call (256) 265-WELL. MORE ROOM IN MADISON A plan to add 30 new patient rooms at Madison Hospital is nearing the finish line. The first five new rooms, designed for medical-surgical patients, opened in January. Twenty-five more rooms remain under construction on the hospital’s previously empty top floor, including a new eight-bed Intensive Care Unit that is on track to open in February. The project will increase Madison Hospital’s capacity from 60 inpatient beds to 90. Also, construction has started on a new Fast-Track area within the Emergency Department that will expedite treatment of patients with less serious illnesses. It’s expected to open in April.

FROM DRAB TO FAB A new larger-than-life mural is brightening the mood of patients in Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children’s Antepartum Unit. Thanks to the generosity of Huntsville Hospital Foundation donors, the hospital’s Child Life Arts in Medicine program hired artist Renee Prasil to transform a plain stucco wall that was the only view from several patient rooms. Instead of a blank wall, expectant moms in one part of the Antepartum Unit now enjoy a colorful, 58-foot-long painting of sunflowers, butterflies and animals with babies. “Research has shown that artwork, particularly nature-themed artwork, can reduce the stress of patients and improve their overall experience,” said Melissa Lawson Child Life Arts in Medicine Coordinator. ACCREDITED LUNG CANCER SCREENING SITES Madison Hospital is now a nationally accredited Lung Cancer Screening Center by the American College of Radiology. Madison Hospital uses Computed Tomography (CT) diagnostic imaging to screen patients for lung cancer. Lung cancer screening programs at the Huntsville Hospital Heart Center CT Lab and the hospital’s downtown Med Mall are also accredited by the American College of Radiology. 2018 CANCER SURVEY The Huntsville Hospital Cancer Committee is conducting an anonymous and confidential survey to learn more about the health needs of our community. “The information collected from the survey will help identify and overcome barriers that individuals face in receiving cancer care,” said Karen Adams, Director, Cancer Registry and Cancer Program. Your responses play an important role in improving the overall health of people in Huntsville and North Alabama. Please take a few minutes to complete this short survey by visiting the link ( cancer-survey) or scanning the QR code.


Amos with Huntsville Hospital Trauma Surgeon Dr. Deepak Katyal at Hartselle Intermediate School.

SURGEON HONORED AS HERO While many boys his age idolize movie stars and pro athletes, Amos Neal’s hero is a Huntsville Hospital trauma surgeon. For a 5th grade social studies assignment, Amos chose Deepak Katyal, MD, as his hero. Back in 2012, Dr. Katyal performed lifesaving surgery on Amos after he was assaulted by his then-stepfather. Amos, 10, has made a full recovery. He loves playing baseball, basketball and soccer and wants to give ice hockey a try. In early December, Hartselle Intermediate School teamed with Liberty Learning Foundation to publicly honor Dr. Katyal and other “Super Citizens” nominated by students.

past from grateful patients, but being recognized by Amos was especially meaningful. “It’s special on so many levels,” he said. “It’s just very reaffirming. It’s why we do what we do.” The assault ruptured Amos’ small intestines and left him hospitalized for about three weeks. Dr. Katyal was the trauma surgeon on call that night. “We’ve encouraged him to tell his story,” said Amos’ mother, Kayla Tillman. “He might be a voice that can help others get out of an abusive situation.”

“It’s special on so many levels — it’s just very reaffirming. It’s why we do what we do.” Dr. Deepak Katyal

Amos said Dr. Katyal was the first person he thought of after being assigned to write about a hero in his life. “What he did for me was pretty cool,” Amos said, “and I wanted to say thanks.”

Dr. Katyal said he’s received thankyou letters and Christmas gifts in the Source | Winter 2018


AWARDING EXCELLENCE Each year, Huntsville Hospital recognizes department heads for excellence in leadership. Five of the awards are named for former hospital leaders; the sixth is known as the Peer Award. Our 2017 recipients are:


Danielle Armstrong, RN, MSN Ed Boston Department Head of the Year Award Armstrong began her career as a neonatal nurse in 2006. In 2011, she transferred to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and also joined the Pediatric Critical Care Transport program. In 2015, she was named coordinator of Kids Care transport, as well as director of the Pediatric ICU. She continues to lead both programs today.

Brian Buchmann, RN, MSN, MBA Marge Adams Award for Excellence in Quality Management Buchmann joined the hospital in 1999 as a clinical education specialist. For more than a decade, he worked in various nurse training programs and in 2015 became nurse director of the Family Practice and General Medicine units. He is also a past president of the Alabama State Nurses Association.

Brett Bramlett, CHPA, CHSP Peer Award Bramlett is a 27-year employee of Huntsville Hospital, beginning his career as a safety and security courtesy guide. He worked his way through the department and is now director of safety and security, a position he has held for 17 years. He is also a past recipient of two leadership awards at the hospital.

Brad Pounders, CMRP Patti Bibb Award for Excellence in Financial Management One of the hospital’s newer leaders, Pounders spent much of his career at Russellville Hospital. In 2015, he became director of material management at Helen Keller Hospital in Sheffield, a Huntsville Hospital Health System affiliate. A year later he came to Huntsville Hospital as director of purchasing

Catherine Brown, RN, MSN, CNS, ACNS-BC Fred Crauswell Award for Excellence in Human Resources. Brown joined Huntsville Hospital in 2007 as a staff RN in the Cardiology IV unit. In 2014, she moved to the Surgical Service Line as a clinical nurse specialist. In 2016, she was named nurse director of the hospital’s Joint Camp program and Ortho Spine Unit.

Gina Turner, RN, MSN, MBA Lola Stewart Award for Excellence in Customer Service Turner began working at Huntsville Hospital in 1998 as a Surgical ICU supervisor. In 2013, she became the hospital supervisor at Madison Hospital. In 2015, her duties expanded to include director of nursing on the 3rd and 4th floors, the ICU, and physical therapy. Turner will also manage Madison Hospital’s soon-toopen 5th floor and telemetry area.

TRUE BLUE RECOGNITION Huntsville Hospital is the only medical facility in North Alabama, and one of just eight statewide, to be named a Blue Distinction Center+ for cardiac care in 2018. Blue Distinction Center+ hospitals have demonstrated that they provide more affordable specialty care in addition to quality care, treatment expertise and overall patient results. Huntsville Hospital’s maternity care, knee and hip replacement, spine surgery and bariatric (medical weight loss) surgery programs also earned Blue Distinction Center+ honors for this year. Athens-Limestone Hospital and Decatur Morgan Hospital, which are part of the not-for-profit Huntsville Hospital Health System, received Blue Distinction Center+ recognition for both maternity care and knee and hip replacement. Another health system facility, Helen Keller Hospital in Sheffield, claimed Blue Distinction Center + honors for knee and hip replacement.

Huntsville Hospital and its affiliates earned multiple recognitions from BlueCross BlueShield for exceptional treatment and patient outcomes.

Huntsville Hospital Foundation

A special thanks to our sponsors!

invites you to

Founding Sponsor

Silver Sponsor

Blue Sponsors Drs. Aruna and Amit Arora Mr. and Mrs. Lewis A. Palumbo

Table Sponsors Candy and John Burnett Mr. and Mrs. Frank M. Caprio CFDRC Clearview Cancer Institute Dr. and Mrs. David Engle Dr. and Mrs. John F. Gleason, Jr. Grace, Matthews and Debro, LLC Dr. Carl A. Grote, Jr. Iron Mountain Solutions, Inc. Mr. and Mrs. Raymond B. Jones, Sr. Mr. and Mrs. Peter L. Lowe Mr. and Mrs. Mark Mantooth Dr. and Mrs. Jim McCarty MedCo Services

Mr. and Mrs. Alexander Pols Redstone Federal Credit Union Regions Bank Rives Construction Robins & Morton Pat and Gene Sapp Dr. and Mrs. Val Sapra Dr. and Mrs. Bill Schneider ServisFirst Bank In Honor of John and Patsy Shields Dr. and Mrs. Paul Tabereaux Dr. Prasad Vankineni Mr. and Mrs. Jeff Wilson

Friday, March 2 6:30 – 10:30 p.m. 100 Skate Park Drive Madison $25 per person

Includes event & entertainment Dinner & cocktails to be purchased at event For more information or sponsorships, please call (256) 265-8077, or email

Source | Winter 2018


Radiation oncologist Dr. Jack Gleason Jr., medical director of Alliance’s radiosurgery program and Dr. Holly Zywicke, neurosurgeon at Huntsville Hospital Spine & Neuro Center.

OUTSMARTING BRAIN TUMORS The treatment of certain brain tumors just got faster and more effective thanks to a powerful new stereotactic radiosurgery system at Huntsville Hospital. Alliance Cancer Care in the hospital’s Blackwell Medical Tower is the first medical office in the state, and one of only 10 nationwide, to pair a latest-generation Versa HD linear accelerator with ExacTrac advanced image guidance. Radiation oncologist John F. “Jack” Gleason Jr., MD, medical director of Alliance’s radiosurgery program, said the new system ensures that the radiation beam hits only the tumor, which allows better preservation of the surrounding healthy tissue. If a patient has more complicated brain lesions or a condition like trigeminal neuralgia that can be treated with either radiation or surgery, Alliance’s physicians and the neurosurgeons at Huntsville Hospital Spine & Neuro Center collaborate on a treatment plan. Holly Zywicke, MD, is medical director of the neurosurgery side of the partnership. The multidisciplinary approach “improves the safety and quality of treatment, and it spares the patient from having to go see two different physicians,” said Dr. Zywicke. “This really presents a comprehensive means of care.” Because the new linear accelerator delivers radiation in higher doses than conventional radiation therapy, it can also kill a brain tumor in a fraction of the time. Instead of 30 or more visits spread across six weeks, many patients treated with the new radiosurgery system will need a single non-invasive treatment lasting about half an hour. “If we deliver all the radiation to a tumor in one day, it’s harder on the tumor than spreading the same dose over several weeks,” Dr. Gleason said. “So this is a more clinically effective dose.” The new system also eliminates the need for one of the most unpleasant parts of radiosurgery: head frames. With many older systems, a large frame would be attached to the patient’s skull with bone screws. The frame provided the coordinates needed to direct the radiation beam to the tumor lurking inside the brain – but it could be painful. Physicians now instead use image guidance from MRI and CT scans of the patient both before and during treatment, along with the ExacTrac system which gives 8

instantaneous feedback on patient position in all six dimensions, to make sure the radiation beam hits the target with an accuracy of less than a millimeter. No frame necessary. The term “radiosurgery” is a bit of a misnomer since it’s not a surgical procedure. There are no incisions, and the patient remains awake while the radiation attacks the tumor. “Patients don’t even feel the treatment,” said Dr. Gleason.

Radiosurgery can treat the following cancerous and non-cancerous conditions: Brain metastasis Trigeminal neuralgia Meningioma Acoustic neuroma Recurrent glioma Lung Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT) Liver SBRT Spinal SBRT Bone metastasis


that stands up A strong back is essential to doing all the things you enjoy. Being active again can come from a balanced treatment approach designed by our rehab specialists, physicians and nurses. With a custom treatment plan you are one step closer to getting back to your life.

(256) 533-1600 | Source | Winter 2018



Ashley Sargent Photography

CODE SIX AND THE DREAM TEAM Editor’s note: On Dec. 11, 2017, Courtney Waldrop of Albertville gave birth to sextuplets at Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children. It was the first sextuplet delivery in the 122-year history of Huntsville Hospital and the first sextuplet birth in Alabama since 2011. It took nearly 40 nurses and physicians from Labor & Delivery, Mother Baby and the Neonatal ICU (NICU) to bring the Waldrop sextuplets — three boys and three girls — into the world safely. Steve Doyle, senior marketing coordinator at Huntsville Hospital, was in the Operating Room with Courtney’s permission to help escort a TLC television network film crew. He provided this account of the delivery:

Long before the Waldrop sextuplets made their grand entrance, the staff developed an action plan for the complicated and unprecedented delivery. A fittingly-named “Code Six” team of nearly 40 nurses and physicians was created to oversee the sextuplets’ birth and first minutes of care, as well as Courtney’s health. NBC’s “Today” show would later call them the “Dream Team.” For two months, the team trained for the big moment. There were half a dozen or more Code Six simulations where members practiced their assigned roles, asked questions and suggested ways to improve the birth plan. There were so many things to consider: How to find room in an already busy Neonatal ICU for six babies who would need to be kept together? If one or more of the sextuplets came out needing a heart rate-boosting shot of epinephrine, who would give it? How do you keep from accidentally mixing up the identities of six babies born in the same room in roughly the time of a TV commercial break? To solve that last riddle, each baby was assigned a color corresponding with the order of birth. Caregivers used the mnemonic “Roy G. Biv” that represents the sequence of colors in a rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet.

Even the umbilical cord clamps were color coded to prevent identification errors with cord blood. Despite the massive preparations, everyone was nervous. Bringing six fragile, premature babies into the world at once is complicated business. The text arrived just after breakfast on Dec. 11, a Monday morning: “CODE SIX TODAY AT 1:00 PM.” It was time to put all that training to the test. David Rushing, MD, who had more responsibility on his shoulders than anyone as the Waldrops’ obstetrician, set the tone with his calm demeanor. On his way to the Labor & Delivery Operating Room, Dr. Rushing stopped to chat with Eric Waldrop, the father of the sextuplets. He seemed incredibly at ease for a guy who was about to perform just the second sextuplet delivery in the United States in 2017. Dr. Rushing disappeared into the OR, where Courtney was being prepped for a C-section.

Source | Winter 2018


Dubbed the ‘Dream Team’ by Savannah Guthrie of the “Today” show, it took nearly 40 employees to plan, prepare and assist in the delivery of the Waldrop sextuplets.

A nurse showed up to secure six color-coded ID bracelets on Eric’s left arm – one for each baby. More nurses appeared, slipping on surgical gowns, hats and masks. I noticed Eric’s hands trembling.

Five more babies came, about a minute apart.

I fell in behind the last nurse and moved quickly to my assigned spot along a side wall. Hospital marketing staff normally isn’t present for births, but this was no ordinary birth. TLC is working on a show about the Waldrop sextuplets that will debut later this year, and they sent a film crew to the hospital for the delivery. I was there to serve as a camera escort.

You could tell things were going well because the nurses paused to let Courtney and Eric admire each baby before taking them for their first checkup.

Dr. Rushing made his initial incision. Six nurse “catchers” stood in line with sterile blankets to receive their baby. When the first baby arrived, a nurse used a walkie-talkie to notify the six baby care teams waiting anxiously in the next room. I heard the baby cry. He looked bigger than I’d expected, and more alert. Doctors would later brag on Courtney for carrying the sextuplets to almost 30 weeks’ gestation, which gave them extra time to develop inside the womb.


Five more walkie-talkie announcements. Five more encouraging cries.

Just outside the operating room, dedicated neonatal care teams waited with special rolling beds to receive the babies. Neonatologist Meyer Dworsky, MD, directed the receiving teams and decided which babies would be taken first to the NICU upstairs. Eric, suddenly a father of nine (the Waldrops also have an 8-year-old son and 5-year-old twin boys), emerged smiling from the operating room just in time to follow the last baby. As he stepped in the elevator, hospital employees broke into spontaneous applause. They were celebrating this miraculous birth, but they should also give themselves a hand for a job well done, times six.

On Dec. 14, 2017, Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children hosted a news conference about the birth of the Waldrop sextuplets. Right, parents Eric and Courtney Waldrop of Albertville answer questions from the media. The average gestation for a sextuplet pregnancy is 29.1 weeks, but Courtney, a first-grade teacher, managed to carry her babies for almost 30 weeks. Physicians said those extra days inside the womb were critical for the sextuplets’ health and development.

Above, the six color-coded hospital ID bands on Eric’s wrist correspond with the order of birth of the sextuplets. Left, the hospital’s “Code Six” team of physicians and nurses held multiple mock delivery exercises in the Labor & Delivery Operating Room to make sure everyone had their role down pat. The team used IV bags to stand in for the sextuplets during the drill. They also wore color coded caps, corresponding to the baby they would be receiving.

Left, obstetrician David L. Rushing, MD, cared for Courtney during her pregnancy and was part of the hospital team that mapped out a detailed blueprint for the complicated delivery. Center, Lee D. Morris, MD, is one of several neonatologists overseeing the care of the sextuplets in the Regional Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Right, maternal-fetal medicine specialist Antonio Gonzalez-Ruiz, MD, also cared for Courtney during her pregnancy. Most of the NICU equipment and programs— like the giraffe isolette, pictured at left — have been made possible thanks to the generous donors whose support has provided more than $2.8 million since 2005. “In preparing the unit to admit six critically ill premature babies at the same time, we were reminded just how much high-tech equipment we use every day in caring for our babies in the NICU. We appreciate everything donors have given us through the Melissa George Neonatal Memorial Fund and other great projects that focus on the NICU.” – Dr. Lee D. Morris Source | Winter 2018


MAY 10



Cuddler volunteer Liz Smith comforts a baby girl in the Neonatal ICU.

SWEET COMFORT AND CUDDLES Liz Smith isn’t joking when she says she has the “best volunteer job ever.”

in multiple ways. It calms them down, helps them gain weight faster and go home sooner.

Smith spends her days holding, rocking, singing and reading to babies in the Regional Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children.

“When you hold those babies, you can watch the vital signs monitor and see their heart rate slow down to normal,” said Smith.

“It’s really magical,” says Smith. “Other than my own kids, it’s the biggest gift that I’ve ever been given.”

Before they can become a Cuddler, volunteers must meet several qualifications set by the NICU and Huntsville Hospital Volunteer Services. The criteria include passing a background check, being vaccinated against the flu and tuberculosis, and a minimum of 50 hours of volunteer work spanning at least six months in another part of the hospital.

Smith is one of more than 50 specially-trained NICU Cuddler volunteers who provide therapeutic talk and touch for premature and sick babies when the parents are not available. NICU Director Cheryl Case, RN, created the Cuddler program in the summer of 2015 after noticing a spike in the number of babies being born with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) – withdrawal symptoms and related problems caused by exposure to drugs, especially opioids, in the womb. Due to the success of the program, the unit communicates to all parents that all the babies will be cuddled. Case said research has shown that all babies benefit from human touch

After six months in the program, Cuddlers can graduate to helping with other tasks including feeding and diaper changes. With parents and nurses singing the praises of the NICU Cuddlers, Case worked with Huntsville Hospital Volunteer Services to expand the program. Eighteen new Cuddlers recently completed orientation. The NICU is now so flush with volunteers that the hospital added a 9 p.m. to midnight shift. Source | Winter 2018


Huntsville Hospital cardiac nurse Terra Jarrell was in the right place at just the right time to help John Smyth, who had a heart attack on the side of Interstate 65 in Limestone County.

ANGEL ON THE INTERSTATE Terra Jarrell’s trip to Tennessee for a lottery ticket wound up being lucky in a way she never expected. A registered nurse in Huntsville Hospital’s Cath Lab, Jarrell prefers driving the back roads. But she found herself near Athens on Tuesday, Dec. 26, and decided to take Interstate 65 instead. It was a decision that likely saved a man’s life. A few miles north on I-65, Hartselle resident John Smyth was feeling ill and pulled his Ford Escape over near the state line. The aerospace contractor and his wife, Denise, were on the way to Louisville for a post-Christmas visit with their daughters’ families. Smyth’s hands and forearms were tingling, and his chest felt tight. He figured it was a bad case of indigestion. He was having a heart attack. In a fortunate turn of events, Jarrell exited the highway at just the right time to see Smyth. “I had no reason to be on that road,” she said. “I just kind of lost track of where 16

I was and took the Elkmont exit by mistake.”

“When the aspirin took effect, it was like a load came off me,” said Smyth.

Two other good Samaritans also stopped, including Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely. He happened across the scene on the way to investigate a pawn shop robbery.

He was taken by ambulance to Huntsville Hospital, where interventional cardiologist Joshua Krasnow, MD, inserted two stents to restore the blood flow in Smyth’s coronary arteries. Two of the arteries were 99 percent blocked.

Jarrell has cared for hundreds of cardiac patients in her 15-year nursing career and immediately knew Smyth was having a heart attack. He was sweating profusely; his skin was turning gray. “I felt like I had an elephant standing on my chest,” Smyth said. Jarrell knew there was no time to wait on an ambulance. She loosened Smyth’s collar and checked his vital signs. Another man who had stopped to help offered his own heart medicine, but Jarrell said aspirin would be better. During a cardiac event, aspirin slows blood clotting that can further obstruct blocked coronary arteries. Blakely had aspirin with him. Jarrell had Smyth chew four tablets so the medicine would be absorbed faster.

Smyth, 62, was discharged from the hospital later that week and returned to work on Jan. 8. The contract administration specialist with Aerojet Rocketdyne in Huntsville said he is alive today because of the actions of Jarrell, Blakely and the other motorist who stopped to help. “So many people drive past when something like this happens, but Terra and the others cared enough to pull over,” he said. “God had a hand in it all the way through. Truly, it was nothing short of a miracle.” Jarrell believes God sent her to Smyth in his time of need. “This was all God,” she said. “I was just the vessel He chose to use.”

FINGER ON THE PULSEPOINT A free smartphone app could help put you in the right place at the right time to save a life. When someone goes into cardiac arrest in a public place like a restaurant, the Huntsville-Madison County 911 Center now sends an alert to the PulsePoint app at the same time they dispatch first responders. The app is aimed at people with CPR training who may be able to get to the scene before paramedics. It shows users the location of the cardiac emergency on a map and even directs them to the nearest automated external defibrillator (AED). 911 Center Director Chris Tucker said early CPR from a trained bystander can double or triple a person’s chance of surviving a cardiac event.

“We’re proud to be the first community in Alabama to deploy PulsePoint and its lifesaving capabilities,” Tucker said in a news release. The HEMSI ambulance service, Huntsville Fire Department, Madison Fire Department and volunteer fire departments across Madison County teamed with the 911 Center to bring PulsePoint to the community. Huntsville Hospital Emergency Department physician Sherrie Squyres, MD, was also involved in her role as HEMSI’s medical director. To download the app, go to the iPhone App Store or Google Play Store and search for “PulsePoint.”

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(256) 265.PAIN (7246) | Source | Winter 2018





MARCH 13 Lunch Bunch, 11 a.m. Luciano’s 964 Airport Road, 35802 (across from SteinMart) 17

Day Trip, Morgan County, AL


Tasty Tuesday, 11:30 a.m. Trinity UMC, 607 Airport Road, 35802


TASTY TUESDAY Tuesday, March 27 · 11:30 a.m. The Opioid Epidemic: A Circle of Addiction Speaker: Candi Dunaway, Partnership for a Drug Free Community Tuesday, June 26 · 11:30 a.m. Understanding Your Lab Report Speaker: Vicky McClain, Administrative Director Clinical Laboratory Huntsville Hospital


Lunch Bunch, 11 a.m. Commerce Kitchen 300 Franklin St SE, 35801


Local Outing, Casual Classics, 3:30 p.m. U.G. White Mercantile 115 Clinton Avenue, 35801

Tuesday, August 21 · 11:30 a.m. Our Multigenerational Families: Communication and Understanding Speaker: To Be Announced


Introductory Balance Class, 1 p.m. Madison Wellness Center 8391 US-72 W, 35758

Tasty Tuesdays are held quarterly at 11:30 a.m. at Trinity United Methodist Church, 607 Airport Road, 35802. Advance reservation and payment is required.

19-21 National Volunteer Week 24

Introductory Balance Class, 1p.m. Medical Mall 1963 Memorial Parkway, 35801

26-29 Springtime in Kentucky Trip (call for availability) MAY Lunch Bunch, 11 a.m. BRAVO! 401 The Bridge St #180, 35806

8 JUNE 12

Lunch Bunch, 11 a.m. Phil Sandoval’s 6125 University Drive E-18, 35806


Overnight Trip, Dahlonega, GA


Local Outing, 2 p.m Shrek the Musical Lee HS Main Stage Theatre


Tasty Tuesday Luncheon, 11:30 a.m. Trinity UMC 607 Airport Road, 35802

Call (256) 265-7950 for reservations. Huntsville Hospital Senior Horizons 101 Sivley Road · Huntsville , AL 35801 18

Come early for blood pressure checks provided by retired nurses, at 11 a.m.

LOCAL OUTINGS Casual Classics Concerts Alabama’s Storytellers with The Huntsville Symphony Orchestra Sunday, April 15 · 3:30 p.m. Location: U. G. White Mercantile, 115 Clinton Ave E, Huntsville, AL 35801 Cost: $20 To walk through the doors of U. G. White Mercantile in downtown Huntsville is to step into history; nearly every fixture in the store has a story to tell. For the Casual Classics performance the sales floor at U.G. White will be cleared to make way for Alabama’s most treasured wordsmiths and yarn-spinners while the musicians of the orchestra perform underscores drawn from the chamber works of composers such as Bernstein, Barber, Dvorák, and William Grant Still. Conductor: Gregory Vajda

HORIZONS Introductory Balance Class Choose one date April 19 – Madison Wellness Center – 1-1:45 p.m. Call (256) 265-6 292 to register. April 24 – Medical Mall Wellness Center – 1-2 p.m. Call (256) 265-7100 to register. Cost: No Charge Falls are the leading cause of fatal injury and the most common cause of nonfatal trauma-related hospital admissions among older adults. While not all risk factors for falls can be addressed improving our balance can increase your chances of not being incapacitated. Join a small group of Senior Horizons members as we participate in a balance class, at either the Medical Mall or Madison Wellness Centers. Shrek, the Musical June 24 · 2 p.m. Location: Lee High School Main Stage Theater 2500 Meridian St N, Huntsville, AL 35811 Cost: $25 Shrek, the Musical is a tony Award-winning fairy tale adventure. It brings all the beloved characters you know from the film to life on stage and proves there’s more to the story than meets the ears. The performance is presented inside the home of Huntsville City Schools’ Theater and Technical Theater Magnet programs.

DAY TRIPS Overnight Trip to Dahlonega, GA Dates: June 6-7 (Wednesday-Thursday) Cost: $280/person (double occupancy) We will be traveling to the charming town of Dahlonega, in the North Georgia Mountains. Our trip includes lunch at a wellknown historical restaurant, a visit to the Gold Museum and shopping on the public square. We will start our second day touring the largest residential estate garden in America. After a morning at the garden, we will travel to a lavender farm and enjoy a hearty lunch at a local restaurant.

FOUR-DAY EXCURSION Springtime in Kentucky Tour with Excursions Unlimited Dates: April 26-29, 2018 (Thursday – Sunday) Cost: $839 (double), $1,064 (single) Call for availability Experience Spring in the ‘bluegrass state.’ Highlights: Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Churchill Downs, dinner on the Farm, the Creation Museum, the Ark Encounter, Dinner Cruise on the Ohio River, dinner show at the Derby Theatre, Stephen Foster’s “Old Kentucky Home” and more. Ticket price includes: tours and entertainment, nine meals, hotel accommodations, motorcoach transportation,snacks, taxes, and luggage service. Gratuities are extra.


with Collette Vacations

Important Note: Prices listed cover all transportation expenses including round trip air fare from Huntsville, air taxes, fees/ surcharges and transfers. A $500 deposit is required to initiate the reservation process. Travelers have seven days to withdraw their reservation to receive a full refund. Prices are subject to increase prior to travelers making full payment. Cancellation insurance is available at an additional cost. Single rates are available. Other destinations are available. Please inquire. Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta – Tour # 816633 Dates: October 4-9, 2018 Deadline for Deposit: April 25, 2018 Cost: $2,769 (double) Final Payment Due: August 2, 2018 Highlights: New Mexico is “the land of enchantment.” This trip includes Santa Fe, Santa Fe School of Cooking, Turquoise Trail, Balloon Fiesta, Old Town Albuquerque, National Museum of Nuclear Science & History, Indian Pueblo Cultural Center. 6 days – 8 meals.

July Mystery Trip Saturday, July 28. Cost: $70/person (double occupancy)

Spotlight on New York City Holiday – Tour #870236 Dates: November 26-30, 2018 Deadline for Deposit: June 14, 2018 Cost: $3,249/person (double occupancy) Final Payment Due: September 25, 2018

Join us for a day of entertainment, fun and mystery! To give you some clues, we will be in Alabama or Tennessee but drive time is less than three hours. The planned activities require average physical activity, the ability to climb stairs and walk reasonable distances, possibly over uneven ground. We have not traveled to this location in the last five years.

Highlights: Guided tour of “The Big Apple,” 9/11 Memorial and Museum, Radio City Rockettes, ferry to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center and Holiday Market at Union Square, Times Square and a Broadway Show, Single hotel stay. 5 days – 5 meals

Source | Winter 2018




Angelen Hochberger, Helen Norris, Susie Pickens, Mary Jaco and Mary Engel on Nashville trip.

Kathy Bazzell, Evelyn Kaylor and Ann Baugh at the Opryland Hotel.

Keith and Gail Bates at the Diamond Rio Dinner on the Nashville trip.

Burlene Childers, Betty Johnson, Betty Dunaway, Sylvia Patterson and Rebecca Broad

Adessa Cannon, Sherry Hokanson and Patsy Doty at DeSoto Falls.

Ruth Swan and Gwen Shephard at DeSoto Falls.

Bess Webb, Jennie Coe, Marion Williams, Sara Little and Sherry Hokanson celebrate birthdays on the DeKalb County trip.

Margo Williams, Gloria Blackwell and Shelba Proffitt on the DeKalb County trip.

Larry and Barbara Wilkes at DeSoto Falls.

Evelyn Kaylor, Martha Keplinger, Mary Jeffries and Helen Flanagan at DeSoto Falls.

UPDATE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS! Email updates are requested from Senior Horizons membership. Postcards were mailed in February to update email addresses. Some email communication is already happening but we would like to reach more members each month via email. We will continue to issue announcements and renewals through the regular mail for those members who do not have email. Thank you for your cooperation in returning the email update postcard with your corrected information.


HELPING SENIORS STAY HEALTHY Huntsville Hospital has launched a new Accountable Care Organization (ACO) to coordinate the care of Medicare patients across North Alabama.

Kyle Buchanan, Executive Director of Population Health

More than 13,000 Medicare recipients and about 500 physicians and physician extenders such as nurse practitioners are part of the ACO, which went live on Jan. 1.The coverage area includes Madison, Morgan, Limestone, Marshall, Lauderdale, Colbert and Franklin counties.

Kyle Buchanan, Huntsville Hospital’s executive director of population health, is managing the new ACO. He said network providers will work together to better manage their patients’ conditions, share information to improve the quality of care, and coordinate the transition of care between home and hospital. The network includes both primary care physicians and specialists.

For the first year, the goal is to make sure Medicare patients get back in the habit of having an annual physical exam in order to identify health concerns before they become significant issues. “We’ll be able to see from Medicare records that a patient hasn’t had a wellness visit claim for several years,” said Buchanan. “That will allow us to work with his or her physician to contact the patient and say, ‘It’s time to get you back in to visit your doctor. Let’s find out if there’s anything we can do together to help you remain as healthy as possible.’” The new ACO is among the largest in the state to use only Alabama-based providers, he said. ACOs are groups of doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers who come together voluntarily to give coordinated, efficient, high-quality care to their Medicare patients. The goal is to ensure that patients, especially the chronically ill, get the right care at the right time while avoiding unnecessary duplication of services.

NEW MEDICARE CARDS COMING Medicare has used Social Security numbers as a primary identification number for its beneficiaries since the inception of the federal health insurance program in 1965, but growing concerns over identity theft and fraud have prompted a seismic change in the program. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will soon remove Social Security numbers from all Medicare cards and issue a new Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) to replace the Social Security numbers. The MBI number will be printed on new Medicare cards and beginning in April 2018, will be mailed to all people with Medicare. The massive mail out will be in phases by geographic location.

To learn more about the new Medicare cards, visit To report a possible scam, call 1-800-633-4227. GUARD YOUR CARD Don’t get scammed. You WILL NOT be asked to confirm your Social Security number over the phone. Also, there is NO CHARGE for new Medicare numbers or cards. Both of these requests have been reported as scams.

People with Medicare should also be sure that their address and other contact information is up-to-date. Medicare patients can change their address by calling Social Security at 1-800772-1213 or going online to their account at “It’s absolutely key that people with Medicare be aware of the new cards. They need to watch their mail and be sure they don’t miss their new card when it arrives, “said Melody McKeel, director of Patient Access Services at Huntsville Hospital. The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) are warning that it also creates an opportunity for scams. CMS and AARP are working to educate beneficiaries about possible scams through a campaign called “Guard Your Card”. Source | Winter 2018




SAVE THE DATES 30th annual Huntsville Classic! May 10 Dinner and Concert featuring Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit at the Von Braun Center Propst Arena May 12 Golf Tournament at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Hampton Cove For tickets and sponsorship opportunities, call (256) 265-8077.

Jan, Ian, Melissa and Ken Mackenzie recently hosted the Scott Mackenzie Memorial Homebrew Festival in memory of their beloved son, father, husband and brother Scott Mackenzie who passed away in April. The event raised $5,088 for Hospice Family Care.

Thanks to Team ADTRAN, two Gamers Outreach Go Karts—the first of their kind in Alabama—are now providing recreation and entertainment to pediatric patients during their hospital stay. Each GO Kart is equipped with a PlayStation or Xbox system, games, controllers and monitor. It can be raised or lowered to comfortably rest at a child’s bedside. 22

Thanks to the Foundation’s Dr. Frank Crim Compassion Fund for Children with Cancer, Development Council members purchased and wrapped Christmas gifts for all of Huntsville Hospital’s St. Jude Affiliate Clinic patients and their siblings. Pictured: Ashley Lawson, Dylan Owens, Phillip Ray, David Jones, Bryan Carter and Ryan Letson.

The Satterfield family wanted to teach their girls, ages 12, 8, 5 and 17 months, the importance of giving to others during Thanksgiving, and they chose to make 50 “thank you” bags and cards for our Neonatal ICU nurses.

John and Patsy Shields and Tracy and George Jones of Century Automotive present the keys to a 2018 BMW 3 Series sedan to winners Nicholas and Ashley Sharp (center).

Huntsville Hospital Foundation hosted its 32nd annual BMW Brunch on Nov. 19, at Century BMW. The event raised $35,000 for The Caring House, a cheerful place where children and teens can work through the grieving process after the loss of a loved one. Funds raised will be used to fund medical play equipment and teaching supplies that will provide tangible and visual tools to support children’s understanding of illness and loss.

Holly Hall, Leslie Crosby, George Jones, Beth Morring and Dr. Cara Greco. A special thank you to silver sponsor HighTower Twickenham!

Dr. Bill Schneider, Dr. Jim Byrd and his wife Mary Beth, Dr. David Bains and Dr. Keith Jiminez.

Dr. Howard Miller, John and Patsy Shields, Patty Miller and Dr. Mac Phillips and his wife Barbara attend the Brunch in the new Century BMW service area.

A special thank you to the 2017 BMW Brunch Committee: Ashley Sharp, Summer McClung, Marie Schneider, Margaret Gleason, Elaine Coley, Garrett Schreeder, BMW Brunch Chairman Bree Wilbourn, Nicole Farrell, Loni Cleve and Kristin Deaton.

Source | Winter 2018


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Three of Huntsville Hospital Foundation’s youngest philanthropists prove you are never too young to give back. Together they have donated more than $34,000 to support Huntsville Hospital patients and their families. The Foundation staff interviewed them recently.

Far left: Aidan (center) delivering toiletry bags to Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children; Center: Nisha (center) with Nicole Jones, and her dad Dr. Ravi Mailapur; Right: Kiptyn with Lee Shaw from The Caring House

Kiptyn Hatfield, 7, was recently adopted and, instead of receiving presents at his celebratory party, he chose to collect donations for five local charities. Kiptyn donated $145 to The Caring House.

Why do you give to families at Huntsville Hospital for Women & Children? When I was about four years old, I had a life-threatening emergency. At the time, my parents and I lived in Scottsboro, which was about an hour away from the closest pediatric hospital so I was airlifted to Huntsville Hospital. My parents left the house with nothing to be there by my side. When I was older, I began to realize that many other families go through that same hardship. This inspired me to reach out and help those going through similar difficulties.

Why did you choose to give money to the kids at The Caring House? Because I wanted Miss Lee [Shaw] to be able to buy art supplies for the kids who have had someone they love die and go to Heaven. Why did you decide to give donations instead of getting gifts? I want to take care of my community and I already have so much. I don’t need any more toys! 16-year old Nisha Mailapur, daughter of Huntsville Hospital bariatric surgeon Ravi Mailapur, MD, wanted to build awareness and help individuals fight obesity. She combined both her love for running and her father’s medical specialty by creating the Say No To Obesity 4K Run/Walk, which raised $32,000 in its first year. Why are you passionate about supporting bariatric surgery patients?

I am very passionate about supporting bariatric patients because I have witnessed some of the journeys, struggles, and stories that my father’s weight loss patients have shared in his weekly seminars. Some mentioned that when they were obese, they felt invisible. It is not just an aesthetic problem. It becomes a social and health issue. Why do you think giving to Huntsville Hospital Foundation is important? Huntsville Hospital Foundation is where everything starts: it is where funding accumulates for new equipment and where events like Swim for Melissa start. By giving, you are starting a chain reaction from the Foundation to Huntsville Hospital to the community. The Foundation is unique because its contributions and impact on the community are spread along a wide spectrum of medical causes. Aidan Mills, an 18-year-old senior at Hazel Green High School, started The 13:13 Project to help families of sick and injured children at Huntsville Hospital by providing toiletry bags and meal vouchers. To date, she has raised more than $2,200.

What would you say to another young person considering giving back? I would say to go for it! You don’t have to be well known or have lots of money to impact the lives of others, because even young people in our community can make a difference.

Are you inspired by Kiptyn, Nisha and Aidan? You can get involved with Huntsville Hospital Foundation by calling (256) 265-8077, or learn more at Source | Winter 2018


INPATIENT HOSPICE RIBBON CUTTING AND DEDICATION CEREMONY On Nov. 14, the Foundation co-hosted a dedication ceremony followed by lunch and a tour of the new inpatient hospice facility. Guests included local dignitaries, Huntsville Hospital and Foundation leaders, and generous capital campaign donors who helped make the facility possible.

At the inpatient hospice facility dedication ceremony and ribbon cutting: Jeff Samz, Huntsville Hospital chief operating officer, Donna Palumbo, Hospice Family Care Board chairman; Jack Johnson, Dr. Dick Finch and Tony Palumbo, capital campaign chairmen; Kristina Johnson, Hospice Family Care executive director; Dr. Libby Shadinger, Huntsville Hospital Foundation Board chairman; Phil Bentley, Health Care Authority Board chairman; and David Spillers, Huntsville Hospital chief executive officer.

Hospice Family Care Executive Director Kristina Johnson with Inpatient Hospice Medical Director Dr. Rob Hash and his wife Laura.

Dr. Rao Kakani and his wife, Authority Board member Bhavani Kakani enjoy the dedication ceremony.

Dedication ceremony and luncheon hostesses: Chairman Marilyn Hull, Mary Susan Johnson, Carole Finch, Anne Robinson, Dale Griggs and Donna Palumbo.

Connie and Rusty Stephenson honor the life of their grandson through the naming of a patient room.

Kathy Chan and her son David Chan in the administrative wing, dedicated in memory of Kathy’s mother.

John Wessel and Jean Wessel Templeton in the inpatient hospice facility chapel by the stained glass window Jean dedicated to her parents, and to the parents of her late husband, Fred Wessel.

Loretta Spencer, John Purdy and Sarah Chappell admire the donor recognition wall in the new inpatient hospice facility. The family and their business, Laughlin Service Funeral Home, honored their parents with a generous gift to the capital campaign.


32ND ANNUAL RECOGNITION DINNER Huntsville Hospital Foundation’s generous major donors were celebrated at the Societies of 1895 & 2012 Recognition Dinner on Nov. 9.

Dr. Carl Grote, Jr. presents the Carl A. Grote, Jr., MD, Outstanding Physician Advocate Award to Emergency Medicine physician Dr. Shane O’Neill, for his outstanding and selfless work with the Huntsville Hospital Mobile Medical Unit, which he co-founded in 2016. Dr. O’Neill’s children joined him on stage for the award presentation.

Marilyn and Dr. Dick Hull, Joanne and Dr. Lou Horn, Robbie Burlison and Ann Tubbs

Robert and Julie Lockwood, Melinda and Dr. Shaf Holden

Joe Campbell, Carole Forêt, Janice and Dr. Alex Johnson, Drs. Amit and Aruna Arora

Dr. Libby Shadinger, Huntsville Hospital Foundation Board chairman, honors Phil Bentley, longtime donor, Foundation Trustee and Health Care Authority chairman, with the Trustee Leadership Award.

Congratulations and thank you to the 2017 Societies of 1895 & 2012 award recipients: Phil Bentley, Trustee Leadership Award; Andrea Hatfield, Outstanding Foundation Volunteer Award; Dr. Shane O’Neill, Carl A. Grote, Jr., MD, Outstanding Physician Advocate Award; Loren Lochner, Outstanding Employee Volunteer Award; and Nate Adams representing Mix 96.9, Outstanding Foundation Partner Award. Source | Winter 2018


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Source - Winter 2018