2022 Community Benefits Report

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bayhealth YOUR TRUSTED PARTNER IN HEALTH ➜ 2022 COMMUNITY REPORT Feeding Our Neighbors Bayhealth works with our community partners to combat nutrition insecurity and help our patients lead healthier lives PLUS: Bayhealth Family Medicine Residency Program Increases Access to Primary Care / Helping People Cope With Cancer / Supporting the Heart Health of Our Community


Bayhealth’s central mission is to improve the health of our community—one life at a time. Often that translates to life-changing medical treatments and surgeries, urgent and emergency care services, and preventive health screenings, even for those who don't have the resources to pay for the care they need (in 2022, for example, Bayhealth provided $10,560,788 in financial assistance; see page 9 for other community benefit information).

We also meet our patients where they are, performing certain exams on-site at workplaces or community events. Additionally, the residents in our Graduate Medical Education (GME) program are improving access to care at clinics, community resource centers and our Family Medicine practice in Dover.

Increasingly, however, we’re also helping address the nonmedical needs of residents across Delaware.

Social determinants of health (SDOH) can impact up to 80% of an individual’s physical and mental state; some SDOH examples include income, housing and food insecurity. Identifying such needs is the first step, so care providers at our hospitals and Bayhealth Medical Group conduct SDOH screenings of patients and refer them to resources such as Unite Delaware or Meals on Wheels. Bayhealth has also partnered with the American Heart Association and the Food Bank of Delaware on the 302 Food Rescue app. This statewide effort, a firstin-the-nation collaboration, connects food-insecure people with fresh fruits and vegetables, prepared meals, and other healthy food items that might have otherwise gone to waste—all with the help of volunteer drivers in our community. It is truly neighbors feeding neighbors.


The mission of the Bayhealth Foundation is to raise funds for programs and services that support the health of central and southern Delaware. We couldn’t do this without the incredible generosity of our community, and for that we say, “Thank you!”

This past year saw the completion of the PCOM Simulation Center at Bayhealth and the continued growth of the undergraduate and graduate medical education programs. We’ve raised $6 million to date and the effort is ongoing as Bayhealth adds even more innovative programs to GME. So many individual and corporate donors have helped this tremendous effort, including Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM), Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield DE and the Junior Board of Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus.

On a related note, a recent campaign in support of a new medical office building in Harrington honored retiring physician Vincent Lobo, DO, who cared for multiple generations of families over the past 50+ years. The GME program has roots in Dr. Lobo’s decades-old vision that Bayhealth become a teaching hospital.

We also raised funds for Bayhealth Total Care in Milton. This new, state-of-the-art facility (located at the corner of Lewes-Georgetown Highway and Hudson Road) includes Delaware’s first hybrid emergency and walk-in center with on-site diagnostic imaging capabilities. Additionally, the building is home to primary and specialty care provider offices—allowing us to truly provide total care to our patients and friends in the area.

There are so many worthy projects, big and small, that have drawn enthusiastic support—including a new van to provide free transportation to cancer patients receiving treatment that was funded by the Auxiliary of Bayhealth Sussex Campus.

These efforts reflect just some of the ways that Bayhealth is evolving to meet the growing needs of our patients—and looking toward the future with the development of a new master plan for the health system. The sky’s the limit on what Bayhealth can accomplish— with your continued support.


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If you want to support the mission at Bayhealth, our Foundation team is happy to answer any questions you may have. You can reach us at 302-744-7015 or email Foundation@Bayhealth.org.



Bayhealth’s Family Medicine Residency Program bridges the primary care gap. Plus: Population Health programs promote wellness visits.



A numeric snapshot of our community benefits and patient care statistics.


A collaboration between Bayhealth, the Food Bank of Delaware, Food Rescue Hero and the American Heart Association combats nutrition insecurity.


Clinical social worker Debrah Hagen helps patients and their families cope with cancer. Plus: On-site cancer screenings at Perdue Farms.


Heart assessments support the cardiovascular health of our community. Plus: Bayhealth leads the way on heart walks.


A new Obstetrical Emergency Department provides needed services for expectant mothers. Plus: Expanding Women’s and Children’s facilities and providers.


Terrence Tsui, DO, cares for Delaware State University athletes on and off the field.


Bayhealth Hospital, Sussex Campus welcomes a new neurosciences physician practice.


Generous donors give back to Bayhealth through a charitable gift annuity. Plus: 24/7 virtual urgent care.

Bayhealth’s mission is to strengthen the health of our community, one life at a time. As central and southern Delaware’s largest healthcare system, Bayhealth comprises Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus and Bayhealth Hospital, Sussex Campus, the freestanding Emergency Department in Smyrna as well as numerous satellite facilities and employed physician practices encompassing a variety of specialties.

Terry M. Murphy, FACHE

President and Chief Executive Officer

Gary Siegelman, MD, MSc, CPE

Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer

Rosemary Wurster, DNP, RN, MPH, NEA-BC

Senior Vice President and Chief Nurse Executive

Michael J. Tretina, CPA, MBA, FHFMA, FACHE

Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Lindsay A. Rhodenbaugh, DMin

Senior Vice President, Chief Development Officer and President of the Bayhealth Foundation

John Van Gorp

Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer

WHERE TO FIND US Visit Bayhealth.org/Locations for a full list of Bayhealth medical facilities.

bayhealth YOUR TRUSTED PARTNER IN HEALTH ➜ 2022 COMMUNITY REPORT Feeding Our Neighbors Bayhealth works with our community partners to combat nutrition insecurity and help our patients lead healthier lives PLUS: Bayhealth Family Medicine Residency Program Increases Access to Primary Care Helping People Cope With Cancer Supporting the Heart Health of Our Community


The Bayhealth Family Medicine Residency Program improves access to care

Since its origination in 2021, Bayhealth’s Family Medicine Residency Program has been forging connections between doctors training for a future in primary care and residents who utilize the program’s Family Medicine practice in Dover. “We are passionate about improving the health of our community,” said Brintha Vasagar, MD, program director, Bayhealth Family Medicine Residency Program. “It’s a real joy to work here, training future family doctors and filling an important, unmet need in our area.”

For second-year resident Paulina Rudy, DO, caring for patients means “doing something new every day, because you don’t know what your next patient’s needs will be.” Both Kent and Sussex counties have health professional shortages, with less than one primary care physician for every 2,000 people. “Our program is unique in many ways,” said Dr. Rudy, a graduate of the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. “People can get in for an appointment without a long wait. We see children, pregnant moms, adults of all ages with all kinds of health conditions and concerns.”

Graduate Medical Education program residents are medical school graduates who spend three years working under the supervision of seasoned physicians. Family Medicine is one of several residencies in the program, along with Internal Medicine, General Surgery and Emergency Medicine.

“Family Medicine has very broad training because family doctors encounter every possible medical need. They have to know how to treat a wide variety of conditions and

“ We are passionate about improving the health of our community. It’s a real joy to work here, training future family doctors and filling an important, unmet need in our area.”
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Bayhealth Family Medicine Residency Program Director Brintha Vasagar, MD, (right) treats a young patient.

know when to refer to specialists,” Dr. Vasagar said. “Our residents do inpatient hospital rotations at Bayhealth in Critical Care, Emergency Medicine, Cardiology, Pulmonology, Obstetrics and more. But the heart and soul of Family Medicine is caring for patients on an outpatient basis. That’s where you can get to know patients on a deeper level.”

Some patients coming to the new Family Medicine practice in Dover haven’t seen a doctor in decades and have complex combinations of conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes, said second-year resident Sameer Valluri, MD.

“Now I’m getting to know my patients better,” said Dr. Valluri, a graduate of American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine. “I see their names on my schedule and say, Oh, there’s Mr. X—I know what he does for a living, where he lives, what he’s like. As we become familiar with each other we build trust and can do more work together, such as making lifestyle changes including stopping smoking, dealing with substance abuse and weight loss. There have been some real success stories.”

“My message is that small changes are important,” added Dr. Valluri. “That’s what I want for my patients—changes they can stick with.”

Dr. Rudy said her patients have been relieved to finally have someone they can talk with about mental health issues. “They’re so happy to get help at last,” she said.

She has also worked with patients who have gone to emergency departments in the past for help with chronic health conditions like high blood pressure or diabetes because no family doctor is available to see them. “The emergency department can help you get a new prescription for a blood pressure medicine, but your family medicine doctor knows you on a deeper level: what diseases your family has, how many medicines you’ve tried in the past, and what screenings you need to keep you healthy,” she said. “[Our] patients care about their health. It’s an honor to help them better manage it.”

The practice also has a pharmacist available to help review medications and a behavioral health counselor to assist with mental health needs. “It’s wraparound care,” said Dr. Vasagar.

While all Family Medicine residency programs in the United States require residents to complete a research project, Bayhealth is unique in asking its residents to focus their project on ways to improve community health—such as increasing mammogram and colonoscopy rates. Residents also receive training on discussing healthcare needs with the Delaware State Legislature.

“We want our residents to be advocates for community health,” Dr. Vasagar said. “There’s so much excitement and passion about making a difference. We want to harness that.”

Bayhealth.org/Family-Medicine to learn more.
“ Your family medicine doctor knows you on a deeper level: what diseases your family has, how many medicines you’ve tried in the past, and what screenings you need to keep you healthy. ”
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Paulina Rudy, DO, offers much-needed primary care at Bayhealth Family Medicine, Dover. Sameer Valluri, MD, gets to know patients on a deeper level to help them on their path to wellness.

Immersive Training

When it comes to working in high-stress or life-and-death situations, one can never get enough practice. Now, thanks to the new state-of-the-art Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) Simulation Center at Bayhealth, residents in the Graduate Medical Education (GME) program can get the training they need to provide the best patient care.

The 10,000-square-foot facility opened at Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus, in September 2022. It features a skills lab consisting of simulation rooms that can work as inpatient or outpatient rooms, an emergency department bay or an operating room. There are virtual and augmented reality simulators, as well as a patient simulator known as Trauma HAL with human-like features and responses that allow for hands-on training. The center is available to all clinical staff, including nursing and allied health professionals.

“The sim center opens up opportunities for our clinicians to learn and grow in a high-tech, safe space. The residents love it. They know it is a place where they can ask questions, make mistakes and learn from those mistakes,” said Sarah Beebe, PhD, Bayhealth GME Simulation Lab program manager. “We have a beautiful space and wonderful standardized practices that are going to produce safer, competent providers and clinicians. Our nursing staff, our doctors, everyone can use this space so that we can improve the patient care that we already offer to our community.”

The GME program welcomed new residents in Internal and Family Medicine in July 2022, as well as the first class in General Surgery. The Emergency Medicine residency also received accreditation in 2022 and greets its inaugural class of six residents in July 2023.

Funding for the PCOM Simulation Center at Bayhealth was supported by generous donors, and southern Delaware residents will benefit greatly from having more skilled care providers in the area.

“It is so heartwarming to talk to people who have been supportive of the GME program,” said Beebe. “They know that by investing in the safety and learning of new providers, they are investing in their families and their friends. It’s wonderful to see.”

For more information about supporting the GME program, visit Bayhealth.org/Foundation or call 302-744-7015.

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The high-tech PCOM Simulation Center at Bayhealth provides a safe learning environment for clinicians to perform virtual surgeries or practice medical procedures on a patient simulator known as Trauma HAL.


Bayhealth Medical Group caregivers work for a healthier community

When a woman living with asthma made multiple visits to her doctor’s office and the emergency department (ED), it was clear she needed extra support managing her condition. Asthma inhalers contain dozens of medication doses, yet she struggled so much with her breathing that she used an entire inhaler daily. Enter the Population Health Programs team at Bayhealth Medical Group. While getting to know the patient, they discovered that her home was being condemned. “We found out that her environment was triggering her shortness of breath, which increased her visits to the ED and primary care provider’s office and led to her running out of her inhaler medications at a rapid pace,” said Ashley Istenes, MSN, RN, Population Health Programs supervisor. “We’ve connected her with a community resource [that is] working on making her house livable again, which will, in return, help improve her overall health.” Through various initiatives, Population Health Programs’ aim is to connect with patients and understand their needs—whatever they might be— to better deliver exceptional care.


Most people can’t tell you their cholesterol numbers or the date of their last mammogram, a fact Bayhealth understands. “Life moves incredibly fast,” said Istenes. “These are things that fall quickly to the wayside.”

To help patients focus on preventive health, Bayhealth Medical Group launched a Wellness Visits program in



that have been identified as social determinants of health (SDOH).


So Bayhealth Medical Group conducts SDOH screenings on patients annually, more often if needed. “We ask, for example, can you afford your medications?” said Istenes. “We recognize that if a patient has to make a difficult decision between food, bills and medications, medications are most likely to take the least priority.” If a patient needs a less pricey alternative or home delivery of medications, the team makes it happen.

2016 and expanded it in recent years. All primary care offices now have a wellness nurse who sees patients Monday through Friday.

During the annual wellness check, nurses conduct health screenings, remind patients about vaccinations, and offer expert tailored education (for example, giving fall prevention tips to someone at high risk for falling).

“That way, you can stay up to date and live your healthiest life,” said Istenes.


Up to 80% of someone’s health is impacted by factors like economic stability, housing and domestic violence

If someone is struggling to buy groceries, the nurse can provide referrals to community resources that address food insecurity (see page 10 for more). “We’re connected with Unite Delaware, so we can make a closed-loop referral,” said Istenes. “We send patients to the Food Bank of Delaware [which sets them up] with consistent meals and we also place referrals to Meals on Wheels, for balanced meal delivery based on their disease process. Our community referrals are able to give us a more holistic picture of the person.”


The Population Health Programs team urges Medicare patients—people who are typically 65 and older—to visit their doctor’s office twice yearly, for a wellness visit and preventive screenings; patients are encouraged to go more often if they have a chronic condition. Istenes said it’s her team’s job to support patients in taking a proactive approach to care so they can live healthier lives for years to come.

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of patients seen in Bayhealth Medical Group offices from April through August 2022
Number of patients screened for social determinents of health (SDOH)
Percentage of patients who were screened
Percentage of patients who screened positive for SDOH


Bayhealth Medical Group is passionate about preventive health. So each quarter, its Population Health Champion Committee—comprising representatives from each primary care office—launches a new health campaign to support that effort.

The campaign might encourage patients to get a mammogram or an A1c screening for diabetes; these regular health screenings are necessary, but patients may push them to the back burner for various reasons. Each month the committee sends the primary care offices a list of patients to contact based on need. By being proactive, we can target patients in real time versus waiting for them to come into the office, which they might not do for months.

The campaigns do result in some friendly competition—the offices with the most screenings and the highest increase in screenings get a trophy and a free lunch—but the real winners are the patients, who are being set up for longer, happier lives.

“ We recognize that if a patient has to make a difficult decision between food, bills and medications, medications are most likely to take the least priority. ”
Bayhealth Medical Group staff like Veronica Brown, LPN, help patients take a proactive approach to health.


*Includes Inpatient Rehabilitation, excludes Nursery and Neonatal ICU

Bayhealth's patient care services team, including 2021 overall nurse of the year Michele Klippert, strengthen the health of our community one life at a time.

8 2022 community report COMMUNITY
Fiscal Year 2022 Fiscal Year 2021 ED Visits 101,918 95,269 Births 2,396 2,119 Outpatient Visits 626,551 515,834 Patients Admitted* 17,386 17,646 Diagnostic Imaging Procedures 266,375 253,722 Laboratory Tests 1,657,542 1,596,479 Surgical Cases 18,824 18,293 Average Length of Stay 6.42 5.62

Nearly 70 young athletes received free sports physicals to prepare them for their next sports season thanks to 11 Family Medicine resident physicians who volunteered their Saturday to provide this service. The event was held in partnership with the Bayhealth Family Medicine Residency Program and the Bayhealth Medical Group. “When I saw that Bayhealth was offering free physicals, I knew I had to take advantage of it with three daughters preparing for fall activities,” said Nicole Markland (pictured), whose daughters underwent physicals. “And I’m glad I did because the process was seamless, fast, and the doctors and staff were all very kind.”


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Financial Assistance
$10,560,788 Government-Sponsored Healthcare $57,564,999 Unreimbursed Care $12,687,506 Community Health Improvement Services $2,352,966 Health Professions Education $7,556,957 Subsidized Health Services $48,582,031 Research $1,897,361 Financial and In-Kind Contributions $2,253,253 Community-Building Activities/Operations $5,352,795 Total $148,808,656
(charity care at cost)
“ We consider it a gift to care for our community. Year after year, we are grateful you choose us. We are happy to play a role in helping our community thrive and live healthier lives.”
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The 302 Food Rescue app helps connect people in need with healthy food items.

Bayhealth is partnering with the Food Bank of Delaware and the American Heart Association to help combat food insecurity


Caring for our community goes beyond the Bayhealth Hospital campuses and Bayhealth Medical Group offices. Nonmedical factors such as environment, housing and food insecurity—some of the social determinants of health (SDOH)—play a critical role in people’s well-being and lifelong journey to good health.

Patient screenings at Bayhealth hospitals and provider offices have identified food insecurity as a top nonmedical concern among respondents (second only to financial need). Not having enough nutritious food to eat puts people at increased risk for heart disease, obesity and other chronic conditions. Food-insecure children may also be at higher risk for developmental problems or mental health concerns.

Bayhealth is helping to address food insecurity among our patients, along with other social concerns, through various community partnerships. One such collaboration is a first-inthe-nation partnership with the Food Bank of Delaware, the American Heart Association (AHA) and Food Rescue Hero.

The initiative officially launched in fall 2022 with the 302 Food Rescue app that connects food-insecure people throughout Delaware with produce, prepared meals and other usable healthy food items that would otherwise have gone to waste.

“It’s a win-win for our patients and our community,” said Amanda Bowie, interim vice president, Marketing Communications for Bayhealth. “It all goes back to our mission of strengthening the health of our community one life at a time. Our main goal is to connect people who need food the most with the right resources—getting them what they need so they can recover after a hospital discharge and stay healthy at home.”

Healthy Food for Healthy Hearts

“Heart disease is the No. 1 cause of death globally, nationally and in Delaware; stroke is the No. 3 cause of death in Delaware,” said David Morris, executive director, Delaware American Heart Association. “Eighty percent of cardiovascular disease and stroke cases can be prevented by maintaining a

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“ Nutrition security is a huge focus for us and a great preventive measure to combat cardiovascular disease in the state.”

healthy lifestyle, and one of these key factors is diet. Nutrition security is a huge focus for us and a great preventive measure to combat cardiovascular disease in the state.”

Nutrition security is a more inclusive take on food security, meaning that people not only have access to food, but access to healthy food such as fresh produce, proteins and other goods that are low in sodium and sugar. Many areas of southern Delaware, including parts of Sussex County, are considered food deserts where it is extremely difficult for people to find the right foods close to home.

“Our studies have shown that in southern Delaware you can often get to 20-plus convenience stores or fast-food restaurants before you can reach a grocery store,” said Morris. “Through this partnership with Bayhealth, the Food Bank of Delaware and Food Rescue Hero, we are trying to meet people where they live—to personally deliver nutritious foods that reach the AHA’s standards.”

The initiative leverages the Food Bank’s existing network of volunteers and food donors (including local restaurants, grocery stores, caterers, hotels and farms) to connect community centers, shelters and other resource hubs with food that they can pass on to those in need.

“Food rescue is a great way to divert food away from the landfill and into the stomachs of those who need it most,” said Kim Turner, communications director, Food Bank of Delaware.

“We are really excited to partner with Bayhealth and the American Heart Association; all of our organizations are better when we work together.”

How It Works

Bayhealth’s 302 Food Rescue app is powered by Food Rescue Hero ® technology to alert volunteers about fresh food rescues in real time. Say a grocery store has a donation of food that it can’t sell to customers (think fruit, vegetables, day-old bread or prepared meals that are still good but have a short shelf

life in the home). The app pushes notifications to registered users—called the 302 Food Rescue Crew—with food rescues to claim near them; then the volunteer driver picks up the food and delivers it to a community agency that has been preselected by the Food Bank.

“The app is volunteer-facing,” explained Victoria Della Rocca, RD, national strategic partnership lead, Food Rescue Hero. “Just like if you are an Uber driver, you get a notification—bananas need a ride. Maybe for 20 or 30 minutes out of your day, you drive food from the supermarket to a community program. We have a community of over 34,000 volunteers nationally that engage with the app and are jumping in when they can.”

Food rescues benefit the community in multiple ways, nutrition first and foremost. “Eighty-seven percent of food recovered is fresh produce and food,” said Della Rocca; the rescues also keep food waste out of landfills and mitigate the impact of CO2 emissions. “Nationally, we have rescued 115 million pounds of food to date; that equates to a little more than the weight of the entire Titanic!”

Community engagement is another major plus. “Instead of a random truck dropping off at a warehouse, this becomes neighbors feeding neighbors,” added Della Rocca. “We are keeping food in the same community.” Volunteers can spread the word about food rescues on social media and measure their personal impact through the app.

In addition to the 302 Food Rescue app, AHA and Bayhealth are partnering on Healthy for Life, an education component that will roll out over the next three years and provide information on smart cooking, nutritious foods, grocery shopping and more. The programming will be geared toward the whole family, including children.

Having a food-rescue collaboration take place at the statewide level is a first for the country and will pave the way for similar programs in other areas. “This is a serious gamechanger for the state,” said Morris. “It’s not only going to save

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Food rescue is a great way to divert food away from the landfill and into the stomachs of those who need it most.”


For more info about 302 Food Rescue and volunteering as a food rescuer, visit 302FoodRescue.org.

“Delaware is one big family and we take care of each other,” said Bayhealth’s Amanda Bowie. “We have an opportunity to impact our neighbors up and down the state by becoming food rescuers or donating food. Just imagine the sense of pride you’ll have knowing that you made it possible for a family to have a healthy meal when they may have gone without had you not volunteered your time.”

1 . Bayhealth Volunteer Services Manager Carrie Hart, left, works with Tasheema Heyliger, MSN, BSN, RN, Program Manager, Population Health, to distribute boxes from the Food Bank of Delaware to food-insecure patients.
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2 . Generous volunteers help support the nutrition needs of their neighbors.

1 . Volunteers take part in food collection and distribution efforts by Project Kudos, powered by Schell Brothers. 2 . Bayhealth's collaboration with Project Kudos got even bigger. Our Bayhealth Total Care facility benefited from Project Kudos in February 2022, with $1 donated for every like, comment and share on social media posts.

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lives here in Delaware, it is going to be an example for others. We are going to reduce the rates of hypertension, diabetes, and ultimately cardiovascular disease and stroke. By consuming healthier foods, people will naturally lead healthier lives.”

Supporting Patients and Staff

Bayhealth’s efforts to address food insecurity can be felt in the community—and closer to home. During the earlier days of the pandemic, Volunteer Services Manager Carrie Hart was approached by a local baker named Bill Victory who wanted to show some support for hospital staff by making them cakes; he also donated boxes of food that he received from the Food Bank of Delaware on a weekly basis.

“Speaking to staff about those who struggle with food insecurity in our community was very eye opening,” said Hart. “Learning about the struggles people were experiencing and how these boxes of food made a positive impact on their lives was humbling.”

Like so many organizations around the country, Bayhealth’s staff felt some financial strain during the pandemic due to job loss experiences by spouses or partners. The distribution of food boxes was just one way that Bayhealth tried to ensure our team members had what they needed to support their families. Bayhealth Foundation donors also stepped in to help when employees’ families needed it most.

That initial project evolved into a Food Insecurity Taskforce, involving Bayhealth team members from different departments coming together to help food-insecure staff and patients. Patients can now receive boxes of low-sodium, low-sugar food before they are discharged from the hospital and get a referral to the Food Bank. Hart facilitated a connection between the Food Bank and Tabitha Medical Care, a clinic in Laurel that serves a large Haitian population, in hopes it too will receive the heart-healthy, low-sodium, low-sugar food boxes for patient distribution. Bayhealth staff members can confidentially put in a request for food boxes on the Bayhealth intranet or get information on the Food Bank.

To further address our patients’ needs outside of the hospital, Bayhealth recently partnered with Unite Delaware, a network that helps connect people with a wide variety of health and social service providers. The patient’s care team at Bayhealth even receives real-time updates on how the patient is doing with those resources.

“We’re in this community together,” Hart said. “We want to help each other lead better lives—not just medically but in all aspects of life.”

Food Insecurity By

the Numbers


The number of people in Delaware who face food insecurity; that is 1 in 10 people.


The number of children in the above population who face food insecurity—1 in 7.


The estimated number of food-insecure people living in southern Delaware.


Where Kent County ranks among Delaware counties with the highest rates of children dealing with food insecurity. Sussex County is No. 2.


The estimated number of dollars necessary to meet the food needs of people in Delaware.

15 million+

Pounds of food distributed by the Food Bank of Delaware in 2022.


Pounds of food rescued by the national Food Rescue Hero Network from 2015 to 2020.

Sources: Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap 2022 study, Food Bank of Delaware, 412 Food Rescue

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Debrah Hagen helps patients, and their families, who are dealing with cancer find strength.

Coping With Cancer



After a cancer diagnosis, nearly 60% of people feel anxiety, depression or distress according to the National Cancer Institute. At Bayhealth, Licensed Clinical Social Worker Debrah Hagen helps adults with cancer and their families discover personal strength to cope with the mental health challenges of their journey.

“A person with cancer may experience shock, grief, anger, depression, anxiety or overall distress,” said Hagen. “Everyone is unique. I’m here to share tools and strategies they can use. Often, just listening in a nonjudgmental way is transforming.”

Emotional, mental and spiritual support is an integral part of high-quality cancer care at Bayhealth. The free service, available at Bayhealth Cancer Centers on the Kent and Sussex campuses, may involve one or multiple sessions with Hagen; the sessions can take place soon after diagnosis, during treatment or later on. “After surgery, chemotherapy and radiation end, some people begin to worry about

taking care of their health,” said Hagen. “For others, it’s fears about treatment or grief about changes to their body caused by cancer and its treatments. Emotions can surface at any time.”

People may be referred to Hagen by their oncologist or another member of their Bayhealth cancer care team, or they may reach out to Hagen on their own, she explained. “I go on rounds at the cancer centers and meet patients that way, too,” she said. “We may have a short, informal conversation or they may

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decide to see me for a counseling session.” Spouses, parents and other caregivers are welcome, too.

“When someone develops cancer, it unbalances the whole family system,” Hagen said. “We work together to bring balance back so the person with cancer can get the best care possible. Last week, I met a man with cancer during rounds. He was very positive and optimistic, while his wife didn’t say a word. Afterward, she told me she was struggling, and we set up an appointment.”

Hagen works with people who have a broad range of cancers, from breast, prostate and colorectal cancers to skin, head and neck, pancreatic, ovarian, and other types.

“I always try to find their strengths,” she said. “It’s hard to see your strengths in the midst of a trauma. But everyone has things that have helped them when working through difficulties in the past. It could be their support system, or being able to open up to a friend or relative, or something as simple as taking a walk when you

Cancer Registry: Top Cancer Sites

To support a better understanding of cancer incidence and mortality, the Bayhealth Cancer Registry reports accurate and timely data to the National Cancer Database and the State of Delaware Cancer Registry. The numbers below reflect the most common types of cancer diagnosed at Bayhealth Cancer Center, Kent Campus and Bayhealth Cancer Center, Sussex Campus in 2021.

realize you’re feeling depressed. These are strategies that can help you now.”

Long overlooked, mental health issues have been described as the “hidden impact” of cancer. “Cancer is not just physical,” Hagen said. “A patient’s mental situation can affect their treatment and their health.”

Getting help can make a big difference. In recent research, mental health interventions for people with cancer have been shown to reduce depression and anxiety; improve well-being; and, in a large 2020 study of U.S. military veterans with cancer, led to a higher rate of optimal treatments and longer lives. In her work, Hagen uses a wide variety of strategies, including short courses of cognitive behavior therapy to help people reshape negative thinking, grief counseling, gratitude work, relaxation techniques and more. She also refers clients to other community resources to address needs such as substance abuse or concerns about the financial cost of cancer care.

Hagen is uniquely suited to her job. She has a background in hospice care that gives her experience with end-of-life issues and formerly worked at the Center for Cancer Support at Memorial Health Care System in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

She is also a breast cancer survivor herself. “When you hear that you have cancer, everything in your life changes,” she said. “But when we explore our fears and grief and negative thoughts, we can shift them. Reaching out and opening up help. Connection is what increases our strength, flexibility and health.”

To learn more about counseling services, call 302-744-6634 (Kent Campus) or 302-430-5329 (Sussex Campus).

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BAYHEALTH CANCER CENTER, KENT CAMPUS Breast 24% Lung 18% Prostate 14% Colorectal 8% Bladder 5% Other 30% BAYHEALTH CANCER CENTER, SUSSEX CAMPUS Breast 30% Lung 13% Prostate 12% Colorectal 7% Bladder 6% Other 32%

Go for Go Pink!

Bayhealth’s annual Go Pink! health fair supports the well-being of our community with free clinical breast exams and screening mammograms. Proceeds from specially designed Go Pink! T-shirts go toward cancer screenings and care at Bayhealth, as well as the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition.

“We use the money for diagnostic mammograms, screening mammograms and biopsies needed for anybody who doesn’t have insurance or is underinsured,” said Katie Killen, community outreach coordinator at the Bayhealth Cancer Institute.

Even if you can’t attend the event, held every October, you can still get a free clinical breast exam, provided at the Bayhealth Cancer Center monthly.

If you would like to preregister for a clinical breast exam during Bayhealth’s monthly screenings, call Katie Killen at 302-744-6562.

18 2022 community report ONCOLOGY
Go Pink! T-shirt sales support cancer care at Bayhealth. Katie Killen and her team promote early cancer detection with free clinical breast exams.
“ We line up transportation, pick the ladies right up from Perdue, and take them for their mammograms. If everything is normal, they’re good to go for a year.”


The best way to beat breast cancer is to catch it early. As part of Bayhealth’s early detection efforts, poultry workers at Perdue Farms in Milford can get a clinical breast exam on the second Wednesday of each month—without having to leave the facility.

“We normally see from 10 to 15 patients a day when we’re there,” said Katie Killen, community outreach coordinator at the Bayhealth Cancer Institute. “Out of those 10 to 15, normally one of them has a problem and ends up needing a diagnostic study.”

Most of the women have health insurance through Perdue but don’t have a family doctor or OB-GYN to do the clinical breast exam and provide mammogram orders. Helping fill that gap, a Bayhealth nurse practitioner conducts the exam and gives them the referral they need if warranted.

The screening program—a collaboration between Bayhealth, Perdue Wellness Center and the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition (DBCC)—provides Perdue Farms employees with caring support throughout the process, including scheduling a mammogram through Bayhealth if needed.

“We line up transportation, pick the ladies right up from Perdue, and take them for their mammograms,” Killen said. “If everything is normal, they’re good to go for a year. If they need follow-up or additional imaging, we work with Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition to get that scheduled.”

The team also eases the way for migrant workers. “For a lot of them, there’s a language barrier and they have needs as far as transportation or knowledge of how to get a family doctor, so we help them in all aspects,” Killen said. The DBCC provides a translator who speaks Spanish and Creole to help migrant workers communicate with the nurse practitioner during their exam. If an employee needs a mammogram, the translator will accompany her to that appointment.

Thanks to that top-level support, the breast screenings at Perdue Farms have become quite successful. Said Killen, “There’s always a waiting list.”

Bayhealth is committed to meeting people where they are in our community. To that end, Bayhealth was able to purchase a new medical RV unit—entirely funded by donations—that will support mobile healthcare services starting in mid-2023. (A gift from Perdue Farms will also help pay for staffing and supplies for the unit.)

A cancer diagnosis often leaves people feeling powerless, but there is one important way some patients can take charge of their health: If they smoke, quit.

“Your cancer treatment is going to be more effective if you quit, especially if you are getting radiation or undergoing surgery,” said Trina Turner, MSN, RN-BC, lung and colorectal screening nurse navigator, Bayhealth Oncology Services/Cancer Institute. Smoking, vaping and chewing tobacco are all detrimental to healthy cells.

Bayhealth is currently participating in Just ASK, a new project and study created by the American Cancer Society and the Commission on Cancer to improve screening for tobacco users among people newly diagnosed with cancer and then connect them with smoking cessation support. Interested patients receive coaching, either with Turner or through the Delaware Quitline (866-4091858), along with free nicotine replacement products.

bayhealth.org 19
Time to Quit


Community wellness programs help area residents manage cardiovascular concerns

Staying on top of heart health is crucial—but not always easy. Bayhealth is there every step of the way, reaching out into the communities we serve to support healthy lifestyle changes for people with heart disease; providing important equipment like home blood pressure monitors free of charge; and taking medical care directly to individuals facing challenges such as homelessness, lack of health insurance, not having a primary care doctor or living in an underserved area.

Every month, the Bayhealth Community Wellness Program (formerly PACE— Promoting Active Community Engagement) holds free walk-in clinics at the Dover Interfaith Mission for Housing’s shelter for men, the House of Hope women’s shelter in Dover and the Slaughter Neck Education Community Center in Lincoln. At the start of every one-on-one visit, a registered nurse checks the patient’s blood pressure and blood oxygen levels.

“Most of our participants are midlife and older adults with cardiac issues, such as heart failure, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and/or diabetes,” said Bayhealth Nursing Professional Development Specialist Terry Towne, MSN, RN. “We check vital signs first, then review medications and talk with people about how they’re managing their heart health and other conditions, too.” The visits help people keep current with their healthcare needs. Additional benefits include having the time to discuss questions, worries and feelings and get emotional support. “We’re a sounding board for people’s concerns, whatever they are,” Towne said.

The program does still more to close gaps in care. “We have a pharmacy program called Dispensary of Hope that can help uninsured people who need medicines and diabetes supplies,” Towne said. “Sometimes, people can’t afford the $6 copay for their blood pressure or cholesterol medication. We provide flu shots in the fall and make sure people are up to date on all their health services, such as cholesterol checks and screenings for colon and breast cancer.”

These small interactions can make a big difference. Quick thinking on the part of a Community Wellness Program nurse recently averted a health emergency for a participant with heart failure and asthma. He arrived at the walk-in clinic with shortness of breath and fluid retention—warning signs of rapidly worsening heart

20 2022 community report

failure. The nurse discovered that his water pill had been discontinued by mistake and contacted his primary care provider, who represcribed the medication and ordered a chest X-ray.

“The nurse’s intervention averted a potential emergency department visit and admission,” Towne said.

When another program participant nearly fell stepping off the scale, nurses realized his blood pressure was significantly lower than usual. The reason: He was taking four different blood pressure medications, prescribed by several different doctors, at the same time. “Nurses reviewed all of the medications with the patient and his spouse, then developed a schedule to stagger them,” Towne said. “They also talked with his primary care provider and suggested that the couple discuss any new medications with their pharmacist.”

Another example of Bayhealth’s expanding community outreach is the Healthy Hearts Support Group, a free program in which people with cardiovascular conditions and their care partners can learn about heart-healthy lifestyles and meet others

“ We check vital signs first, then review medications and talk with people about how they’re managing their heart health and other conditions, too. We’re a sounding board for people’s concerns, whatever they are. ”
bayhealth.org 21 HEART & VASCULAR
The Bayhealth Community Wellness Program holds free walk-in clinics, especially for people most in need—like those living in area shelters.

on the same journey. Each session includes a presentation by a Bayhealth medical professional followed by group discussion. Meetings take place on the third Tuesday of every month at 2 p.m., with the location alternating between Bayhealth’s Sussex and Kent campuses.

Bayhealth is also responding to needs for home devices that can be key to maintaining heart health, giving away hundreds of blood pressure cuffs to chronic care management patients who have congestive heart failure or high blood pressure. People received cuffs through the Bayhealth Medical Group and at Bayhealth hospitals. And during a nationwide shortage of continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) machines used to treat obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), Bayhealth collected and distributed older-model, still-usable CPAP machines in good working order. The heart connection? About half of all people with OSA also have high blood pressure, which can be controlled with the use of a CPAP machine.

Learn more about Bayhealth Community Wellness and support groups by visiting Bayhealth.org/Classes or calling Bayhealth’s Education Department at 302-744-7135.



HeartAware, available via Bayhealth’s Facebook page, Instagram account and at Bayhealth.org is a five-minute check that provides a personalized estimate of your heart’s age and your 10-year risk for a cardiac event such as a heart attack. The test uses basic information such as your weight; exercise level; family history of cardiovascular disease; and whether you have ever been told you have high blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes to determine your odds for future heart disease. Results are based on data collected over 40 years from the nationally recognized Framingham Heart Study. Participants receive a personalized report that includes information about risk factors and tips for improving heart health, including ways that Bayhealth can help.

Assessments like HeartAware help people better understand their cardiovascular risk and make smart lifestyle changes like weight control, regular activity, a healthy diet and quitting smoking.


Bayhealth staff participated in Capital School District’s Super Senator Day on Dec. 13, 2022, offering free electrocardiogram (EKG) screenings for high school students, ages 15 and older. An EKG is a noninvasive test used to help detect an underlying heart condition that could lead to sudden cardiac arrest.

Students interested in being tested filled out or took home a risk assessment questionnaire and parental consent form. For those screened on-site, the results were read by a board-certified cardiologist and sent to the student’s doctor for the medical record. There were nine EKGs done at the event and a follow-up echocardiogram (to look more closely at heart function) was recommended for three students.

The screenings were provided free of charge courtesy of donations from the Dover Capital City Rotary Club, retired U.S. Air Force Col. George Chabbott and C.F. Schwartz Toyota through the Bayhealth Foundation. To find out ways you can support community-focused programs and efforts, visit Bayhealth.org/Foundation.

22 2022 community report
Exams take place at local shelters and community centers.


There’s nothing like strolling along the Rehoboth Boardwalk, taking in the views— especially when every step helps fund lifesaving services and research.

Each year, friends, neighbors and co-workers gather for the Southern Delaware Heart Walk. The 2022 event was one for the record books, with premier sponsor Bayhealth far exceeding its fundraising goal—becoming the American Heart Association (AHA) of Delaware’s top health system fundraiser in the state with more than $51,000 donated. (The October walk took place just a week before Bayhealth, AHA, Food Bank of Delaware, and Food Rescue Hero Network launched its firstin-the-nation food rescue program.)

“The Heart Walk is an opportunity for everyone in the community to get together and do something to benefit each other by advancing heart and vascular health in Delaware,” said Roberto Scaffidi, MD, an interventional cardiologist and chair of the 2022 Southern Delaware Heart Walk.

Proceeds from this lively event help everyone from kids born with congenital heart defects to adults living with heart disease, the leading cause of death for men and women. “We partner with the AHA to make sure that we raise the funding to keep advancing our programs,” said Benjamin Collins, BSN, senior director of operations for the Cardiovascular Service Line at Bayhealth and chair of the Bayhealth Heart Walk Committee.

Bayhealth’s own Heart Walk Committee coordinates fundraising efforts among staff. Unique in 2022 was a 50/50 raffle, community yard sale at DE Turf and a sneaker drive, to which people could donate their pre-owned sneakers. Bayhealth works with sneaker recycler GotSneakers to redistribute those sneakers to the less fortunate; the monetary donation received in return, as well as the raffle and yard sale proceeds, all go to the Heart Walk.

The Bayhealth Heart Walk Committee also underwent a refresh. “We want to get people up and moving in addition to raising funds for the walk,” Collins explained. In the month leading up to the Heart Walk, participants could join the Move More Activity Challenge, tracking their minutes of activity via a Heart Walk app. Signs along Bayhealth walking paths included QR codes that enabled participants to enter weekly drawings for prizes; Amazon gift cards were also given out. Additionally, people could take part in 15-minute yoga classes and other fitness activities.

“You can really feel something in the air,” Collins said of the annual event. “Everybody’s pumped to get walking. There’s music and stands with different giveaways. It’s a fun day.”

Bayhealth is consistently a top fundraiser for the heart walk—and we always try to surpass our previous goals.


“ Everyone in the community [can] get together and do something to benefit each other by advancing heart and vascular health in Delaware. ”
Brittany Newman, BS, RDCS, clinical echo supervisor, and Roberto Scaffidi, MD, chair of the 2022 Southern Delaware Heart Walk, host a sneaker donation challenge to raise money for the heart walk (nearly 2,000 pairs of shoes were donated).

Care When Expectant Mothers Need It Most

Having a top-quality resource during a prenatal or obstetric emergency is crucial to ensuring the best outcome for both mother and baby. To help provide that essential service, Bayhealth has doubled down on its commitment to women’s health, opening a second Obstetrical Emergency Department (OB ED) in December 2020.

The new location is in the Birthing Center on the fifth floor of Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus. These emergency services are open to all women in the community with obstetric needs, an invaluable option for those who may not have their own obstetrician or who may not have yet received prenatal care. A variety of services are available, from emergency obstetric care to connecting obstetric patients to resources for substance abuse issues. The first OB ED, located at Bayhealth Hospital, Sussex Campus, confirmed the need that the southern Delaware community has for such a vital resource. The Sussex Campus is currently expanding its OB space to meet patient demand, including the addition of five new labor and delivery postpartum rooms.

Building on the success of the Sussex location, the OB ED at Kent has added 24/7 skilled care. The always-available team includes either a neonatologist or a neonatal nurse practitioner, an anesthesiologist, and a pediatrician. An obstetric hospitalist is also on hand to oversee a patient’s care from admission to discharge.

This new ED is in addition to 10 labor rooms, two operating rooms and a Special Care Nursery equipped to handle more critical cases. This facility receives transfers from surrounding hospitals that either don’t have a neonatal intensive care unit or don’t offer 24/7 emergency care.

“When you walk through the door here, you know that there is high-skill-level care present at any time to deal with any emergency,” said K. Starr Lynch, BSN, RNC-OB, senior nurse manager of Women’s & Children’s Services at Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus.

To support Women’s & Children’s Services initiatives, including emergency care for moms and their newborns, visit Bayhealth.org/ Foundation or call 302-744-7015.

24 2022 community report
A new Obstetrical Emergency Department at the Kent Campus expands options for new parents.

Pregnancy Education in Your Pocket


Anticipating childbirth and those early days of caring for an infant can cause plenty of anxiety, especially for firsttime mothers. Learning what to expect during labor and getting informed, clear guidance on topics such as prenatal and infant care and breastfeeding eases those fears and benefits the health of mother and child.

In addition to traditional childbirth and parenting education classes, Bayhealth gives expectant patients free access to the YoMingo app. It provides virtual labor and childbirth classes, videos, tools to track feedings and diaper changes, and other prenatal and postpartum content. The app has the same information taught by hospital staff and reinforces and supplements Bayhealth’s in-person classes. The content is available for both Apple and Android devices in a variety of languages; 689 patients have used YoMingo since Bayhealth began offering it in 2020.

“People like that they can use the app on their own time, whenever and however long they want,” said Angeline Dewey, MSN, RN, director of Education. “It gives women the ability to customize their own education plan with short, relatable bursts of information.”

To find out more information or register for YoMingo, call the Education Department at 302-744-7135.

Residents of Sussex and Kent counties are all too familiar with the shortage of primary care physicians in the area—a gap that Bayhealth is helping to fill with our Graduate Medical Education program, among other efforts—but there is also a growing demand for women’s health services.

To address what state Rep. Ruth Briggs King has called “a dire need for OB-GYNs in this area,” Bayhealth continues to broaden Women’s & Children’s Services with new providers. OB-GYN Melisa Edler, MD, has witnessed that rising demand for care firsthand during her three-plus years at Bayhealth Women’s Care, Sussex Campus, while the Sussex team also recently welcomed OB-GYN Reiesha Graham, MD, to Bayhealth.  “Dr. Graham was born and raised in this area, so it’s wonderful that she is bringing her medical expertise back to Delaware to strengthen the health of women in our community,” said Vice President of Physician Services and Clinical Integration Lawrence Ward, MD.

Furthermore, the new Bayhealth Total Care in Milton will have an OB-GYN on staff. “There’s a need for the new practice and to add more practitioners in women’s care and primary care,” said Chief Medical Officer Gary Siegelman, MD. “It is a growing population in Sussex, and we’re trying our best to keep up with it.”

bayhealth.org 25 WOMEN'S & CHILDREN'S
From left: Bayhealth Women's Care providers Melisa Elder, MD, and Reiesha Graham, MD.


Terrence Tsui, DO, cares for Delaware State University athletes on and off the field

After missing an entire football season due to COVID restrictions, Delaware State University (DSU) Hornets linebacker

Antquan Kinsey was eager to get back in action. Then, while at practice shortly before his first game, another player’s helmet smacked into Kinsey’s right hand, fracturing his fifth metacarpal.

Such an injury would have sidelined most players, but DSU Athletics’ team doctor, Terrence Tsui, DO, had a plan. “I was able to put him in a cast and let

him play basically with a club,” said Dr. Tsui, referring to an especially protective cast. “He couldn’t use his hand like he would if he didn’t fracture it, but he was able to complete his season.” For a linebacker—who mostly tackles and blocks—a club can work well.

Dr. Tsui, who is also a Bayhealth Sports Medicine physician, genuinely empathizes with injured athletes. “I was an athlete growing up,” he said. “I had a lot of injuries, so that’s what drew me to sports medicine.” (He met his wife,

Bayhealth Sports Medicine physician

who’s also a Bayhealth physician, while in medical school.)

Dr. Tsui essentially acts as the athletes’ primary care physician, conducting their physicals before they start the school year, then addressing whatever issues—from injuries to asthma—come up during the season.

While he managed to get Kinsey back onto the field, Dr. Tsui’s top priority is his patients’ long-term health. So if an athlete needs to rest and recover, Dr. Tsui makes that clear to the coaches and trainers; he then cares for his patient—the whole patient. “Sometimes they’re out for the whole season,” Dr. Tsui said. “It does affect them mentally, so I see a lot of anxiety and depression.” When that happens, he ensures the athlete gets the mental health care that he or she needs.

Over time, Dr. Tsui gets to know the DSU athletes. “They see me in the school, in the training room, at football games. We say hi and have small talks.”

That level of familiarity can translate to better treatment. For example, Dr. Tsui treated a young soccer player who initially tried to hide her eating disorder. “The more she got to know me and the more we were trying—being upfront with her, telling how much we care—she just opened up to us and it really helped in her care,” he said. “She was eating better, seeing a therapist and a sports medicine doctor. We were able to get her back playing.”

Dr. Tsui is also an enthusiastic DSU fan. “Those kids, you take care of all of them, and when they get injured and you see them come back, you’re really rooting for them,” he said. “That’s your team.”

26 2022 community report ORTHOPEDICS
Terrence Tsui, DO, treats Delaware State University athletes on multiple levels.


Bayhealth Hospital, Sussex Campus welcomes a new neurosciences physician practice

Neurosurgical care may inspire thoughts of brain tumors, stroke or other major conditions, but Bayhealth’s multidisciplinary neurosciences team addresses a variety of concerns—helping patients get back to the lives they love. And by providing quality care right in the community, Bayhealth is ensuring that the treatment of neurological conditions is more convenient—and less stressful—than ever before.

In August 2022, Bayhealth opened a new neurosciences physician practice in the Nemours Building at the Sussex Campus, providing consultations and clinic visits to more Delaware residents. Previously, patients were only seen at Bayhealth’s Kent Campus.

Neurosurgeons Dawn Tartaglione, DO, and Aaron Sigler, DO, work with five advanced practice clinicians who assist in managing inpatient and outpatient care. The expert team uses state-of-the-art technology to treat a range of disorders that affect the central and peripheral nervous systems. Patients may seek help for many different reasons, including lumbar and cervical stenosis, herniated discs and degenerative disc disease, brain tumors, subdural hematomas, and spine fractures.

“It has been convenient for patients to be seen here,” said Dr. Tartaglione. “They can bring their magnetic resonance imaging [MRI] scan if it was done outside Bayhealth, and, of course, we have access to

all Bayhealth computerized tomography [CT] and MRI imaging at the clinic.”

The new practice also makes it easier for patients to get same-day appointments for X-rays or CT scans.

“Being seen closer to home is especially important for patients recovering from spine fractures or head injuries, and for [people] who no longer drive,” said Dr. Tartaglione.

The practice is the latest addition to the services offered at the Nemours Building at 101 Wellness Way as Bayhealth continues to expand access to care in central and southern Delaware.

Visit Bayhealth.org/Neurosurgery for more information, or call 302-526-1470 to make an appointment.

bayhealth.org 27 NEUROSCIENCES
Left to right: Neurosurgery Support Assistant Shay Spruance; Physician Assistant Volha Komar, PA-C; Medical Assistant Lauren Wheeler, MA; Neurosurgeon Dawn Tartaglione, DO; Registrar Michelle Kelley; Nurse Practitioner Amanda Vickers, NP-C; and Senior Practice Manager Leslie McClements.

A Legacy of Giving



Throughout his decades of caring for patients in Dover, Rafael “Ralph” Zaragoza, MD, saw the community change and evolve. The urologist, who passed away in 2021, established his own practice in the city in 1964 (what is now known as Urology Associates of Delaware). He and his wife, Claire, a retired operating room nurse who passed away in February 2023, raised their family in the area, including son Michael Zaragoza, MD, who joined his father’s practice in 1993.

Ralph and Claire were longtime supporters of Bayhealth, even helping to fund a new operating room at Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus. “I’m glad I’ve had

the opportunity to see the hospital grow and become a state-of-the-art medical center,” Ralph said at the time.

The Zaragoza family also gave back to Bayhealth through a charitable gift annuity (CGA). A donor can work with a nonprofit like Bayhealth Foundation to purchase a CGA, then receive a lifetime income based on the principal of the financial gift. In addition to a guaranteed income, another donor benefit is that some of those funds are tax-free. The principal goes to the nonprofit after all parties attached to the CGA have passed.

“The Foundation held those funds during Claire’s lifetime, and the principal will now be utilized at Bayhealth to improve healthcare,” said Lindsay A. Rhodenbaugh, DMin, president of the Bayhealth Foundation. “Ralph and Claire loved Bayhealth and wanted to continue to support care in the communities we serve.”

The Foundation recognizes planned gifts like these at the time the donation is made; in Zaragozas’ case, this recognition was a plaque in the Zaragozas’ name in the operating room at Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus.

“Your lifetime payout on a CGA can often be better than putting your money in a CD or a savings account,” said Rhodenbaugh. “It can be a significant income that provides some tax advantages—providing a secure income while also supporting the future of quality care at Bayhealth.”

To find out more about donating to Bayhealth, visit Bayhealth.org/Foundation or call 302-744-7015.

28 2022 community report IN THE COMMUNITY
“ Ralph and Claire loved Bayhealth and wanted to continue to support care in the communities we serve.” —LINDSAY A.
Generous Bayhealth donors Claire and Rafael “Ralph” Zaragoza.


Increasing access to quality care is part of Bayhealth’s promise to “bring the nation’s best healthcare to our communities here at home.” In keeping with that promise, the hospital system launched a new virtual urgent care program in early 2022, a service called Bayhealth@Home, which is available to patients at any time of the day or night, online or via a mobile app.

“We want to make things easier for our patients,” said Jonathan Kaufmann, DO, vice president and chief medical information officer. “They can download the app, put in their info and speak with a doctor in as few as 10 minutes.”

Bayhealth@Home is for urgent care needs, such as ear infections or the flu, when patients can’t get in to see their primary care physician.

Although Bayhealth had been developing the virtual urgent care program since mid-2021, Bayhealth@Home’s launch during the January 2022 COVID surge filled a vital need during a time when emergency departments and walk-in clinics were overwhelmed. Bayhealth even waived the fee for virtual appointments for patients and employees.

“Everyone was afraid to leave their house [during that period]; Bayhealth@Home provided an avenue for people to consult with a physician and get the care they needed in a timely manner,” said Dr. Kaufmann.

Community response to Bayhealth@Home continues to be enthusiastic, with patients appreciating the convenience and increased access.

“This is the future of health care and we are offering a service that no one in our market has. We are the only health system in the state offering 24/7 virtual urgent care,” said Dr. Kaufmann. “It meets our strategic goal of becoming more patient-focused and opens the channel for access and capacity when needed.”

Child Care Center Kids Get a Lesson About Giving Back

You’re never too young to experience the joy of helping others—and that’s precisely what the Pre-K class at Bayhealth’s Child Care Center did in spring 2022. Even though these children are just beginning their educational paths, they still know the value of contributing to their community.

With the support of their teachers, Carie Harper and Karen McConnell, the class of 20 students held a vegetable sale at the center on May 18. Their goal was to raise enough money to buy carnations for their parents, to mark their graduation into kindergarten.

“The Child Care Center plants a vegetable garden each year, but most of our produce wasn’t ready,” Harper explained. “So we collected donations instead.” The sale of the produce turned out to be so successful that they raised $263, far surpassing their $40 goal.

The kids decided to use the extra money to help Mom’s House of Dover, a nonprofit that provides childcare to low-income single-parent families. Bayhealth’s Human Resources team got in on the good will, too, and donated funds to double what the children had raised. The class even took a field trip to deliver the donation in person.

“The students were proud to give their parents a carnation at graduation,” said Bayhealth Child Care Center Director Brenda Kibler, “but they were even prouder to support a great cause.”

Bayhealth@Home improves timely access to care. Pre-K students at Bayhealth’s Child Care Center donated vegetable sale proceeds to Mom’s House of Dover.



It’s our mission to provide the best healthcare to our communities. Sign up for Bayhealth’s monthly e-newsletter and receive helpful information that will get you thinking about your health and how to keep it on track. The e-newsletters include inspiring experiences from our providers and patients, as well as news about big developments and initiatives at Bayhealth. We deliver the content you need on the subjects that matter to you most!

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