Partners12 14 final for web publish

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Winter 2014 / 2015

PARTNERS A magazine of Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

INSIDE Cover Story: A New Era of Health Care

Bringing Dental Care to Children in Need Taking Small Steps Down a Long Road Rick and Tiffany Find Hope

Special Insert: Gala Photo Album President and CEO Dr. Eric Bieber leads the organization into a new era of health care

We are Rochester Regional

Health System

See cover story on page 4

WINTER 2014 / 2015


Rochester Regional Health System Board of Directors, 2014-2015 Chairman of the Board: Robert A. Dobies Vice Chair: Michael R. Nuccitelli Secretary: Robert S. Sands

Treasurer: Faheem A. R. Masood President & CEO: Eric J. Bieber, M.D.

Rachel A. Adonis Linda S. Becker Ralph A. DeStephano Robert A. Dobies Nancy S. Ferris, Ph.D.

Karen M. Gallina John L. Genier, M.D. Robert F. Havrilla Tarun Kothari, M.D. Anna L. Lynch Jeffrey C. Mapstone Faheem A.R. Masood Jagat S. Mehta, M.D. Daniel M. Meyers Michael R. Nuccitelli Leonard P. Olivieri Elizabeth V. Patton, Ph.D. Thomas E. Penn, M.D. John R. Riedman Thomas P. Riley Efrain Rivera Robert S. Sands Leon T. Sawyko Justin T. Smith

Rochester Regional Health System Foundations President, Christopher Mahan

Rochester General Hospital Foundation Riedman Campus 100 Kings Highway South, Suite 2300 Rochester, NY 14617 (585) 922-4800 Unity Health Foundation 1555 Long Pond Road Rochester, NY 14626 (585) 723-7050

Newark-Wayne Community Hospital Foundation 1200 Driving Park Avenue P.O. Box 571 Newark, NY 14513 (315) 332-2323

Editor Derek DeSol

Derek DeSol

Writing Carol Fisher

Photography Jeff Blackman Delaine Dacko Kurt Brownell Derek DeSol Keith Bullis Jim Montanus Brenda Cohen Sandra St. James Design Dalmath Associates Printing Canfield & Tack

Cover Story: A New Era of Health Care.................................4 Introducing our new President and CEO.............................5 A Message from Chris Mahan....................................................7 Bringing Dental Care to Children in Need...........................8 Taking Small Steps Down a Long Road..............................10

Golisano Restorative Neurology & Rehabilitation Center Dedicated......................................12 Bringing Advanced MRI Technology to Newark-Wayne..... 14 Losing Weight, Gaining a Mission........................................16 A Legacy of Compassion...........................................................17 A New Unity Hospital................................................................18 It Takes a Village to Build a Community............................20 RGH Transforms the Surgical Stay.......................................21 Rick and Tiffany Find Hope....................................................22 Lipson Cancer Center Expansion.........................................24 From the Newsroom..................................................................25 See center spread for the 2014 Gala Photo Album!


A New Era of Health This year, Rochester General Health System and Unity Health System, two community pillars with the same purpose, values and commitment to serve, have come together to form Rochester Regional Health System, a new organization with a single vision: to lead the evolution of health care and enable every member of our community to enjoy a better, healthier life. Serving the greater Rochester and Finger Lakes region and beyond, Rochester Regional Health System combines the resources, skills and accomplishments of Rochester General Health System and Unity Health System in an integrated network of nationally recognized, community-focused services.

More than 80 primary and specialty medical practices

Wide range of chemical dependency and behavioral health services

Three full-service acute care hospitals: Rochester General Hospital Unity Hospital Newark-Wayne Community Hospital


Leading cardiac, orthopaedic, neuroscience, oncology, surgery, women’s health and medicine programs


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

Comprehensive ambulatory (outpatient) services

Innovative senior care programs, facilities and independent housing

ACM Medical Laboratory, a global leader in patient and clinical trials testing, with worldwide locations and lab partnerships

Care Positioned for the Future Introducing new president and CEO Eric J. Bieber, M.D., M.S.H.C.M.

On November 3, Dr. Eric J. Bieber joined Rochester Regional Health System as president and CEO. He comes to us from University Hospitals in Cleveland, Ohio, where he served as president of the organization’s west region community hospitals and president of the accountable care organization of University Hospitals, an integrated delivery system with more than $3.3 billion in annual revenue and more than 20,000 physicians and employees. University Hospitals has been widely recognized for academic and clinical excellence including receiving the American Hospital Association McKesson Award for quality in 2012.

A health care leader for more than 20 years,

Dr. Bieber was pivotal in the formation of University Hospitals’ six accountable care organizations. He also had responsibility for graduate medical education (1,000-plus residents and fellows), system case management, medical staff and credentialing, clinical research and quality. As he comes to Rochester to lead our new health system, Dr. Bieber brings a distinguished record of academic achievements, appointments, research grants and clinical studies focusing on obstetrics and gynecology, reproductive medicine and associated pathologies and treatments. He has served as an editorial member and reviewer for numerous prominent medical journals. He has authored and edited multiple books, articles, abstracts and other publications and has given dozens of lectures and presentations around the world.

Dr. Bieber received his B.A. in biology from Illinois Wesleyan University and his M.D. from Loyola-Stritch School of Medicine. He holds master’s degrees in microbiology from Illinois State University and health care management from Harvard University. He completed his internship and residency at Rush-Presbyterian St. Luke’s and fellowship at University of Chicago. Prior to joining University Hospitals he was executive vice president, strategic network development for Geisinger Health System in Danville, Pennsylvania.

Continued next page


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Thanks and congratulations to our retired leaders The creation of Rochester Regional Health System is proving to be the right thing for the people who live in our region. Two of the key players in this historic undertaking were our retired co-CEOs Mark Clement

and Warren Hern, who helped their respective organizations raise the standard for local health care, setting the table for a bold new community-based health care organization.


Warren Hern

When Mark Clement came to Rochester General Health System in 2006 as president and CEO, he had one overarching goal: to help a very good organization continue to improve and become a great organization.

Warren Hern joined Park Ridge Health System (the predecessor to Unity) in 1976. In 2010, he became president and CEO of Unity Health System, leading the way to significant growth and improvement in facilities, services, quality, patient experience and employee satisfaction.

The culture of constant improvement, team work and service has shone through in every facet of the organization’s work. According to regular feedback and surveys, patient satisfaction and team member satisfaction have improved dramatically. The organization has also improved access to key services by building a new ambulatory surgery center in the Linden Oaks Office Park in Penfield, acquiring the neighboring Linden Oaks Medical Campus and building outpatient care facilities throughout the region to provide dialysis, primary care, laboratory services and diagnostic imaging.


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

Hern was responsible for Unity’s acquisition of ACM Medical Laboratory and grew the $1 million business into a $100 million global enterprise with services in Europe and Asia. ACM is now one of the top 10 clinical trial laboratories in the world. He also oversaw Unity Hospital’s comprehensive renovation and expansion, adding 80,000 square feet of new space while transforming another 350,000. The project converted the hospital to all private rooms and created a new state-of-the-art facility for several key service lines.

A Message from Chris Mahan President, Rochester Regional Health System Foundations What a year it’s been for our foundation, our health system and the people of this region!

Earlier this year, Rochester General Health System and Unity Health System, two community mainstays with the same mission, culminated a nearly 18-month merger process to form Rochester Regional Health System, a new organization with a single vision: to lead the evolution of health care and enable every member of our community to enjoy a better, healthier life. This merger was not always the easy thing to do, but it was always the right thing to do. In order to ensure the community’s interests remained the first and only priority, executives and board members of Rochester General Health System and Unity Health System collaborated with clinical leaders, administrators and team members to lay the groundwork for our new regional health system.

help our team carry out our mission every single day.

This issue of Partners Magazine is for all of our donors —whether you have supported Rochester General Hospital, Unity Hospital, Newark-Wayne Community Hospital or any of our other services in the past, we hope you read about our work and proudly remain a friend of Rochester Regional Health System. In this issue, we are especially proud to introduce you to Dr. Eric Bieber, our new president and CEO, who will lead our system into its bold, new future. Our community’s needs remain great and, to answer the call, our system will continue to grow. Amid the change, our commitment is steadfast: we will remain the forward thinking, compassionate, accessible and high-quality health care provider our region deserves.

“...our commitment is steadfast...”

Reflecting upon this year of historic change, it’s important to remember friends like you—the generous people who

Thank you for standing by our side. We hope you will continue the journey with us for years to come.

Chris Mahan can be reached at (585) 922-4800 or

Meet our development leaders:

Calista Amering

Special Events, Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

Katie Bresnan

Rochester General Hospital Foundation

Carol Fisher

Grants, Rochester Regional Health System

Tim Maher Unity Health Foundation


Brad Pearson

Newark-Wayne Community Hospital Foundation

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Bringing Dental Care to Children Each year the RGH Department of Dentistry provides more than 1,000 scheduled child visits, but over 400 unscheduled, urgent care child visits.

Dental care for children plays a vital part in their overall health and success in life. Left untreated, dental caries (decay) can lead to needless pain and suffering, and can predispose children to significant oral and systemic problems, such as loss of tooth structure or teeth, eating difficulties, altered speech, infection, poor self-esteem and missed school days.

Higher rates of dental caries but lower rates of dental examination, prophylaxis and treatment are associated with minorities and the poor. Some of the primary barriers to receiving care, such as transportation issues or lack of parental awareness of the importance of dental care for young children, can be overcome by bringing dental services to places where children are already spending time. For example, school-aged children who have access to oral health care services at school-based clinics or in mobile vehicles that visit schools have much higher rates of access and earlier intervention. Unfortunately, by the time a child reaches school age, significant and potentially longlasting damage can already have occurred from a lack of oral health care. The longer the delay in treating dental disease, the more extensive and costly it becomes. Each year the RGH Department of Dentistry provides more than 1,000 scheduled child visits, but over 400 unscheduled, urgent care child visits. Some children end up needing to be seen in the RGH Emergency Department for dental conditions,


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

and each year approximately 245 children must receive dental care in the operating room due to the extent of the disease.

In late 2013, the RGH Department of Dentistry partnered with the Volunteers of America (VOA) to begin providing on-site dental services to the more than 360 children (ages six weeks to seven years) who attend programs at the VOA’s nationally accredited children’s center. Located on Lake Avenue in one of the poorest areas of Rochester, the VOA provides many critical services to families and individuals in need. The vast majority of children who attend VOA programs reside in close proximity to the facility. It’s an area with an average household income of a little more than $18,000. More than 90 percent of the children who attend VOA programs qualify for Medicaid. In order to get children in the Lake Avenue neighborhood the preventative dental care they need, RGH and VOA decided to renovate and outfit a room at the VOA facility as a full-service, permanent operatory that can provide dental examinations, x-rays, hygiene, fluoride and basic treatment. A costly undertaking, both organizations reached out to collaborative grant funders. VOA received contributions from The Davenport-Hatch Foundation, Inc. and others to renovate the space while RGH received grant funding from Ronald McDonald House Charities of Rochester to provide equipment for the room.

in Need With the VOA/RGH dental clinic now up and running, the staff from both organizations continue to work together to:

• Identify children most in need of dental care. • Obtain parent/guardian consent for examination and treatment of children. • Meet with children in non-dental, group scenarios (for example, reading a book or playing a game) to build trust. • Schedule children for initial exams. • Evaluate and treat children. • Schedule follow-up treatment or care and regular hygiene visits. • Follow up with parents of children who are in need of care but who have not received services. The clinic continues its initial ramp-up of registering and serving children, and at full capacity, we anticipate providing roughly 1,600 services to approximately 550 individuals (including siblings and possibly parents of children attending VOA programs) each year.

As with all grants, our funding partners can feel proud knowing the result of their generous support is touching the lives of people in need every single day. If you or your organization would like to learn more about supporting Rochester Regional Health System through a grant, please contact Carol Fisher at (585) 922-4800 or email

Scan the QR code to the right to see a touching one-minute video about the dental clinic and one of the project’s other generous supporters, the Major League Baseball Players Association Trust.


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Taking Small Steps

Down a Long Road A high school senior is in his pickup truck on a wide open country road, living out his own version of the memories many of us treasure well into adulthood. That’s when Ryan Clay, a 17-year-old senior at Kendall High School, saw his would-be fond memories turn into a nightmarish lesson. His parents had plans to go out to their anniversary dinner and had been trying to reach him on his cell phone, but he wasn’t answering.

Clay was driving on a gravel road when he lost control of his truck and hit a tree. He wasn’t using his phone or texting, he wasn’t drinking, he was just an inexperienced teenager who was driving faster than he should have been.

“I only remember waking up in the hospital and I couldn’t feel my left side.”

Initially, Clay’s very survival was in question. Once doctors knew that he would live, other, more pressing questions surfaced: Would he ever be able to walk again? Would he be able to speak comfortably and fluidly? Yes, he was alive, but what kind of life would Ryan Clay have ahead of him? Clay spent the following months at the newly-built Golisano Restorative Neurology & Rehabilitation Center at Unity Hospital. Initially, Clay’s parents, Paul and Karen, were prepared for their son to never walk again.


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

About the Vector Gait & Safety System The Golisano Restorative Neurology & Rehabilitation Center is the first in New York state to use the state-of-the-art Vector Gait and Safety System, shown in use by Ryan Clay in the photo to the left. Patients who are learning to walk again are able to rehabilitate more aggressively without the risk or fear of falling.

Determined and optimistic, Clay and the team at Unity took steps toward rebuilding his speech, strength and everyday living skills others take for granted. This fall, after living in the hospital while immersed in intense physical therapy, Ryan Clay began to walk again —a sight that brought tears to the eyes of his parents and therapists.

The Golisano Restorative Neurology & Rehabilitation Center has a reputation for a world-class team with a personal touch in a state-ofthe-art facility, but this description merely scratches the surface. During his time at the Golisano Center, Clay had access to unique resources like the Vector Gait and Safety System, which allows patients to rehabilitate more aggressively than ever, without fear of falling. The Golisano Center has the only such system in New York state. Ryan Clay was never supposed to walk again, but he remained relentlessly optimistic and hardworking through months of expert care, innovative rehabilitation practices and the occasional dose of tough love. Smiling, he recalls, “they took my wheelchair away and, therapy… it was a pain in the butt.”

“Hearing him talk after two months was one of the few times I cried happy tears,” recalls his mother. “It was wonderful.”

Finally, on October 31, barely three months removed from his accident, Ryan Clay walked out of the Golisano Center to return home with his family. Now that he’s home, Clay continues to improve in his walking and speech while working with Rochester Regional Health System’s outpatient therapists. One small step at a time, he is regaining the life he nearly lost.

The system: • Adapts to the patient’s movement in real-time to mimic real-world gait. • Utilizes wireless software that allows for operation and data storage via handheld remote. • Captures training data for analysis, session comparison and medical record documentation.

Slow Down! An Enduring Lesson Paul Clay (right) doesn’t want his son to forget how he almost lost the life he has worked so hard to regain. As a reminder to his son and other young drivers to slow down, the pickup truck Ryan was driving when he crashed rests in the family’s front yard (see photo on opposite page).

To learn more about how to support future projects at Unity Hospital, contact Tim Maher at (585) 723-7851 or


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Golisano Restorative Neurology &

Nationally recognized program celebrates 25th anniversary, marks the beginning of a new era The media and celebration could wait. Tom Golisano had something more important to do first. Escorted by Dr. Mary Dombovy, vice president of neurosciences and chair of rehabilitation and neurology at Unity Hospital, and Warren Hern, then co-CEO of Rochester Regional Health System, Golisano walked through the center that was about to be officially dedicated in his name. The man, whose name adorns the buildings of community mainstays throughout New York state and Florida, listened to explanations of the center’s state-of-the-art technology, inspected the rooms that recreate the comforts of home and, most importantly, he spoke with patients. It’s always about the patients. “They love you guys,” the iconic philanthropist later beamed to the physicians, nurses and staff during the ceremony attended by roughly 200 current and former patients, employees and physicians. Each of them came with the same purpose—to celebrate the program’s 25 years of lifechanging work and thank the man whose gift of $10 million will keep the program extraordinary for years to come.


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

The gift allowed the already nationally recognized program—then known as the Acute Rehabilitation and Brain Injury Program—to relocate to the Unity Hospital campus and provide patients with a unique blend of comfort, technology and clinical resources available nowhere else in New York state.

Now, with better access to emerging technology, the Golisano Restorative Neurology & Rehabilitation Center is an even more sought-after destination for rehabilitation from brain injury, stroke, spinal cord injury and orthopaedic injury. The center is also the only pediatric rehabilitation center of its kind in western New York.

Dombovy, who continues to lead the program after 25 years, remarked, “one by one, we touch lives and support patients and families through challenges and triumphs.” To learn more about how to support future projects at Unity Hospital, contact Tim Maher at (585) 723-7851 or

Above: Former patients Daniel Santillo and Scott Collins and Collins’ father, Bob Collins, unveil a special gift for Tom Golisano.

Rehabilitation Center Dedicated

The Golisano Restorative Neurology & Rehabilitation Center is a unique resource in western New York.

Patients and former patients attended the ceremony with friends and family.

Retired co-CEO Warren Hern, Dr. Mary Dombovy, Tom Golisano and Golisano Foundation Director Ann Costello catch up before the celebration.

At the Golisano Restorative Neurology & Rehabilitation Unit, patients form a special bond with physicans, nurses and staff.

A 25-year tandem Susan Vogl, vice president of orthopaedics and neurosciences at Unity Hospital, presents Dr. Mary Dombovy with a silver guitar signed by patients, team members and donors to commemorate the program’s 25th anniversary. Vogl and Dombovy have led the program since its inception.


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Bringing Advanced MRI Technology to Newark-Wayne Community Hospital Rochester Regional Health System continues to expand access to advanced, high-quality care throughout the region. In spring 2014, Newark-Wayne Community Hospital (NWCH), introduced a new MRI scanner and suite. The new MRI unit can generate higher-quality images, even for patients with metal joint replacements and other implanted devices—a limitation of previous-generation MRI testing. Flexible coils in the bed of the MRI adapt to the patient’s body to further enhance image quality. By bringing this technology to a comfortable setting in NWCH, patients in the Finger Lakes region, particularly those with complicated medical conditions, can receive the high-quality, safe and accurate diagnostic imaging they need without traveling out of town.

In addition to generating better images, the new MRI scanner improves comfort and reduces anxiety by: • Including “silent scan” noise reduction for neurological exams. • Allowing patients to select a customized audio/visual environment with soothing music and pre-programmed themes. • An oversized chamber. • Feet-first testing, rather than the standard head-first alignment.

By bringing this technology to Newark-Wayne, Rochester Regional Health System is ensuring that patients in Wayne County have local access to high-quality diagnostic imaging services in a comfortable setting.

To learn more about how to support future projects at Newark-Wayne Community Hospital, contact Brad Pearson at (315) 332-2258 or

Cutting the ribbon on the new MRI suite at Newark-Wayne Community Hospital were (from left) NWCH Director of Operations Trish Koczent, NWCH Chief of Diagnostic Imaging Dr. Atul Gupta, RRHS Board Member Bob Havrilla, NWCH President Rob Cercek, RRHS Oncology, Pharmacy and Respiratory Therapy VP of Operations Mark Klyczek, and New York state Assemblyman Bob Oaks.


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

Please help their stories continue… You may recognize some of the faces on this page. Their lives have been touched by Rochester Regional Health System and the generous support we receive from our community each year. We helped Ryan learn how to walk again after a near-fatal accident. We helped Tiffany and Rick beat the odds and become cancer-free. But we didn’t do it alone. The care they received will affect them for the rest of their lives, and you helped us provide it. What you don’t see are the faces of people whose stories will never be told. They are stories of another birthday, another graduation or another opportunity to dance at a wedding.

RYAN See story on page 10

Please, make a gift today and help give our patients the chance to continue their own story, even if it’s one you may never hear. Thank you!

Use the enclosed envelope or visit to make your gift now and help patients like Ryan, Tiffany and Rick.

TIFFANY & RICK See story on page 22


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Losing Weight, Gaining a Mission A small bale of hay, a window air conditioner, an average male bulldog and a bag of dry cement each weigh about 50 pounds. It also represented the amount of weight Wayne France, who is in his early 40s, needed to lose to improve his chances to remain healthy later in life.

France’s life coach and trainer, Kwasi Boaitey, the owner of Upper Level Fitness, knew just what would motivate his client—he would turn the weight loss challenge into a chance to give back to the community.

His goal turned into a mission, and France got to work. For every pound he lost over six months, he pledged to donate money to build a new fitness room for Rochester Regional Health System’s Adolescent Community Residence Program. The program, based out of a residential treatment facility in Greece, helps young men ages 12 to 20 who are diagnosed with a substance abuse disorder. Kwasi Boaitey, Wayne France and Adolescent Residence Director Michael Celento


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

Youths learn how to change their lifestyles to beat lifealtering or life-threatening addiction. They receive critical services in a comfortable, home-like setting, helping them recover and rebuild their lives. The Adolescent Community Residence Program provides: • Individual and group therapy. • On-site schooling coordinated with the participants’ home school districts. • Support from other teens who understand the challenges of recovery. • Family education and support. • Multi-family therapy and parenting skills. • Treatment for co-occurring addition and mental health challenges. • Relapse prevention skills and activities.

A Legacy of Compassion

After six months France lost 51 pounds and raised thousands of dollars for the program. France knew there was no room for more excuses. The Adolescent Community Residence Program was counting on the money he was raising. He would now have to be accountable not only to himself and his loved ones but to the young men he was trying to help.

Success is Just the Beginning

After six months France lost 51 pounds and raised thousands of dollars for the program. His personal goal became less about himself and more about helping these young men build healthy habits that will guide them as they return to their schools, families and communities.

Harold Samloff with his wife, Judy Samloff, sister of Barbara Wolk Schwarz, at the dedication ceremony.

“This won’t be a onetime donation for me,” predicts France. “I envision that it will be a continuing gift of time and resources.”

The Barbara Wolk Schwarz Women’s Community Residence specializes in helping adult women recover from chemical addiction and transition into independent living. The warm, supportive environment provides structure, family education and individual and group counseling for residents as they develop life and coping skills that will help them in their personal lives and careers as they regain their independence.

France’s weight loss journey turned into something greater. He and Boaitey have since secured additional cash and in-kind donations and are volunteering their time to help complete the program’s new fitness room. His friends, family and colleagues also pledged to give during France’s weight loss journey.

To learn more about how to support the Adolescent Community Residence Program, contact Mary Terwilliger at (585) 723-7856 or


n August, Rochester Regional Health System recognized a transformational legacy gift with the dedication of the Barbara Wolk Schwarz Women’s Community Residence on the Unity Hospital Campus. The gift provided funding for several key facility and cosmetic improvements to the 24-bed facility, including new cabinets, upgrades to the security system, flooring, living room furniture and paint.


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Retired Co-CEO of Rochester Regional Health System Warren Hern cuts the ribbon in front of Unity Hospital.

We Built It! Celebrating a In June, the physicians, staff and volunteers of Unity Hospital enjoyed a day, four years in the making, as they celebrated the grand opening of the new Unity Hospital. Never interrupting care during the near-complete renovation and 80,000-square-foot expansion of their existing facility, it has been transformed to improve care, comfort and privacy for every single patient. Unity Hospital Senior VP & Chief Medical Officer Dr. James Haley remarked, “I hope that our patients and families feel not only the beauty of the building, but the beauty of our care.” To learn more about how to support future projects at Unity Hospital, contact Tim Maher at (585) 723-7851 or


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

“I hope that our patients and families feel not only the beauty of the building, but the beauty of our care.” ­ – Unity Hospital Senior VP & Chief Medical Officer Dr. James Haley

Jennifer Johnson and Norma Holland of 13 WHAM TV lead the festivities at Unity Hospital’s grand opening celebration.

Unity Hospital’s rich history is captured in a display on the wall of the main lobby.

Unity Hospital team members celebrate the culmination of the multi-year project that transformed the hospital.

New Unity Hospital The new Unity Hospital of Rochester Regional Health System features: • 350,000 square feet of existing space renovated. • 100% private patient rooms, making Unity Hospital the only hospital in Monroe County with all private rooms. • 80,000 square feet of new state-of-the-art facilities. • The new Golisano Restorative Neurology & Rehabilitation Center. • The new Charles J. August Joint Replacement Center. • The new Andrew J. Kirch Dialysis Center. • The Kamal and Tarun Kothari Center for Endoscopy and Digestive Diseases.

• Eight new nursing communication centers. • A 64-seat education center and classroom to develop the skills of current and future nurses. • One new private family waiting area on each floor of the hospital. • Four new medical and surgical units made possible by the fourth floor addition. • 400 new parking spaces added to Unity’s free campus-wide parking. • A new café and main lobby.


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It Takes a Village to Build a Community Vibrant, active, independent, creative and generous— these are just a handful of words to describe the residents of The Village at Unity. One of the area’s leading retirement communities for nearly 25 years, it was renovated in 2013 to ensure seniors of all health care needs can continue to enjoy a high-quality of life for years to come. The Village is more than a state-of-the-art, comfortable facility. It’s a tightly-knit community with residents who socialize and look out for each other as friends and neighbors.

to volunteer their time and talent to make their community an even better place. Marion Munzer, age 91, is a talented artist who had plenty to contribute. “My apartment was actually getting crowded so I liked the idea of having an art sale to let the money benefit the community. The support was really wonderful. People came from all over the campus to buy my paintings.” Munzer’s art sale contributed more than $800 to the community’s fundraising efforts.

“It was an opportunity for residents, friends and relatives to fund projects that would exclusively benefit the residents’ lives in The Village.”

The sale of artwork and the introduction of an honor/ memorial wall, a brain child That is why Don Gregg was of Gregg’s which records the eager to get more involved. names of loved ones while — Don Gregg He jumped at the opportunity generating funds for future to work with the Unity projects, keep the enthusiasm Foundation to raise money and bring lifestyle-enhancing palpable. All of the funds donated through the The Village improvements like large-print books, audio books, tai chi Giving Circle join the efforts of Gregg, Munzer and their and yoga classes, movies for The Village’s theater room neighbors to enhance the quality of life of Village residents. and summer outdoor concerts to The Village. “I welcome The very process has actually made them a more tightlythe opportunity to still use my brain,” remarked Gregg, a knit community. “I think it has been good for the East and 96-year-old resident of the East Village. West Villages,” Gregg elaborated. “It’s been a great way for people to engage.” Gregg’s enthusiasm was contagious as residents continued To learn more about how to support The Village at Unity, contact Mary Terwilliger at (585) 723-7856 or

Marion Munzer and Don Gregg, residents of The Village.


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

Rochester General Transforms the Surgical Stay In spring 2014, Rochester General Hospital celebrated the grand opening of the new surgical short-stay unit. Designed for patients who need to stay in the hospital for 23 hours or less after surgery, the unit is the latest example of Rochester Regional Health System’s familycentered approach to care.

The new unit, located on the 2000 wing at Rochester General Hospital, provides: • 12 state-of-the-art private rooms designed to facilitate emerging patient safety practices. • Telehealth capabilities in every room, allowing for more frequent rounding by offsite physicians and specialists. • Private in-room showers to provide greater comfort, convenience and safety for each patient. • Family-friendly furniture so loved ones can remain comfortable while staying in the room with the patient. • Two larger rooms to accommodate patients with special needs. • Two nearby family waiting rooms; one reserved as a quiet seating area with comforts such as individual soft seating arrangements, a coffee area, private internet-accessible stations, large glass windows and a fireplace.

In the months since the unit opened, patient satisfaction, as measured in regular standard surveys, has improved significantly.

To learn more about how to support surgical care at Rochester General Hospital, contact Katie Bresnan at (585) 922-4860 or


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Rick and Tiffany Find Joy and Hope Beating cancer has been a permanent life-changing experience for the couple In each other, Rick and Tiffany Staropoli had found the perfect partner. Then in 2007, just three weeks after their wedding, Rick was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

Each of Tiffany’s surgeries required a four-night stay in the hospital. She credits the nurses and staff for helping her to remain in a positive mindset through each surgery, recovery and round of chemotherapy. “They have this way of making you feel so comfortable and so relaxed,” she remarked. “More people need this type of care.”

Thrust into the world of cancer and chemotherapy, they found a refuge in Rochester General Hospital and the Lipson Cancer Center. “We didn’t just find health care Today, Tiffany has been in remission for one year and, providers here,” reflected Tiffany, “we found confidantes, more than just physically, she we found support, we found “The most surreal moment for sees the stage IV cancer caring, we found family.” she has beaten as a permanent, After five years of remission, me was when I walked in with life-changing experience. Rick is cancer-free.

Tiffany. One of the nurses asked me if I was here for a follow up... and I said no.”

“The most surreal moment for me was when I walked in with Tiffany. One of the nurses asked me if I was here for a follow up... and I said no,” Rick recalled.

In 2013, Tiffany Staropoli was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer, which had spread to her liver.

The outlook was harrowing. Tiffany’s treatment was going to include multiple surgeries and a rigorous regimen of chemotherapy. “Thankfully, we had the advantage of an existing relationship with an exceptional team of medical professionals,” explained Rick, including who he calls their “his and her oncologist,” Dr. Zachary Kramer. “When we arrived again at the cancer center for Tiffany’s first appointment, it truly felt like coming home.”

The couple has shared their story with thousands in the community. When addressing a room filled with Lipson Cancer Center supporters, Tiffany told them, “stage IV cancer allowed me to see my worth in this world. Petty concerns fell away. Insecurities seemed absurd and wasteful. Life seemed richer. Life seemed more beautiful.” Tiffany continued, “Cancer taught me to appreciate all that I have. And if I thought I was lucky before, I now realized how ridiculously lucky I truly was. The Lipson Cancer Center did more than simply treat my cancer. It became a safe haven for me to heal as a person—to find joy and hope in a potentially devastating situation.”


“I chose a rather unorthodox method of therapy. Dance therapy.” - Tiffany Staropoli


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

Her husband, Rick, recorded Tiffany’s personal dance therapy sessions and, with the help of friends, made a video to lift her spirits. The video went viral, gaining local and international news coverage. Go to or scan the QR code to watch the video!


WINTER 2014 / 2015


Phase One of Lipson Cancer Center Expansion at RGH is Complete First step toward improving patient access, accommodating growing volume

In fall 2014, Rochester General Hospital completed the first phase of a comprehensive renovation of the Lipson Cancer Center. This first phase will help the team accommodate growing patient needs and allow new patients to be seen sooner, getting them the answers and care they need faster than ever. Providing timely access for a growing number of patients.

To learn more about how to support the next phases of the Lipson Cancer Center’s expansion, modernization and renovation, contact Katie Bresnan at (585) 922-4860 or

Chief of Medical Oncology and Hematology Dr. Pradyumna Phatak joins Dawn Lipson at the ceremonial beam signing to kick off the renovation project.

This project provides Rochester General Hospital with: • Additional space and four new exam rooms (bringing the total to 14). • The ability to hire at least one new physician. • Shorter waiting times for a new patient to be seen by a physician as the number of patients continues to grow. • An even higher standard of comfort for patients and loved ones. • A centralized office suite for physicians.

Phase one of the Lipson Cancer Center renovation project at RGH will allow the center to see more patients, provide better care and offer a more comfortable setting.


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations



Breast Cancer Survivor Gives Back by Sharing her Story Karen Nolan is a mother of two adult children and was a teacher’s assistant at St. Louis School in Pittsford. Currently living in Fairport with her husband, three cats and two dogs, she is giving back to Rochester Regional Health System’s Lipson Cancer Center through her book, “Be Positive No Matter What, My Journey Through Breast Cancer.” In her book, Nolan shares a series of stories, some hopeful, some frightening, some triumphant and all deeply personal and inspiring.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Lipson Cancer Center. To learn more about the book, visit or purchase the book anywhere books are sold.

KeyBank Supports Nursing Education In early 2014, KeyBank Foundation made a generous grant to support nursing education at Rochester General Hospital. KeyBank Market President James Barger and Senior VP Philip Muscato personally visited the Rochester General Hospital Foundation office to deliver the check and extend their well wishes.

A gift to support nursing education is a gift to support better patient outcomes in all areas of health care. Nurses with advanced degrees and the latest certifications are better equipped to provide higher quality care that fits the needs of patients.

Rochester Regional Health System Foundations President Chris Mahan and Director of Grants Carol Fisher accept a check from KeyBank Market President James Barger and Senior VP Philip Muscato.


WINTER 2014 / 2015



Sands-Constellation Heart Institute Expands to Newark-Wayne Community Hospital The Sands-Constellation Heart Institute, one of the hallmark service lines of Rochester Regional Health System, has officially integrated with the cardiac care program at Newark-Wayne Community Hospital (NWCH). The name change, which took place in spring 2014, signifies the hospital’s deep clinical integration with the nationally recognized institute, which is consistently ranked as one of the best in the state and country for cardiac care.

“Although Newark-Wayne’s cardiac program is being renamed today, the principles of the Sands-Constellation Heart Institute have been active here for some time, bringing nationally recognized, high-quality cardiac care closer to home for Finger Lakes patients,” commented Mark Clement, who retired as co-CEO of Rochester Regional Health System at the end of October. The ability to improve continuity of care across a broad geographic area is quickly becoming a calling card for Rochester Regional Health System, whose ability to integrate clinical processes throughout multiple affiliates has been recognized throughout the health care industry.


Rochester Regional Health System Foundations

Sands-Constellation Heart Institute named to Becker’s Hospital Review’s list of 100 The hospitals on this list, compiled by Becker’s Hospital Review, lead the nation in cardiovascular and thoracic health care. The organization continues by stating, “many (of the hospitals on the list) have pioneered groundbreaking procedures, and all have received recognition for top-of-the-line patient care.” This designation is the latest for one of the most celebrated cardiac programs in the United States, which includes also being named a Top 50 hospital for cardiac care by CareChex.

NWCH VP and Chief Nursing Officer Deborah Stamps, R.N., Ph.D. (center) celebrates with NWCH team members.


Judge Telesca Makes Gift to Unity Hospital to Honor Late Physician, Close Friend “Phil and I shared the same attitude towards our professions,” explained U.S. District Judge Michael Telesca, remembering his 40-plus-year association with the late Dr. Phillip Bonanni. A former chair of medicine for Unity Hospital, Bonanni passed away in 2013. “He had it in mind to make a difference, a vision of how patients should be taken care of.” Telesca’s gift helped to refurbish the waiting room

outside of the Unity Faculty Partners Office, Bonanni’s former office, so patients and their loved ones can sit in comfort before their appointments. “The waiting room is the calling card—I wanted it to reflect well on the doctors in that office,” Judge Telesca said. It was a heartfelt tribute to a man who is remembered for his professional talents and his kindness. “He was part physician and part priest,” remarked Telesca.

Urology Associates of Rochester Continues to Support the Lipson Cancer Center Urology Associates of Rochester, through a series of fundraising events and generous support from its partners, employees and the community, has made another generous gift to support the Lipson Cancer Center. Dr. David Dever, Wendy Dever and Urology Associates Practice Administrator Eileen Stone are among those who have spearheaded the practice’s local fundraising efforts.

In spring 2014, the organization presented the cancer center with its latest check, which comes during a time of significant renovation and expansion for the center in response to growing community need. The Lipson Cancer Center has identified several necessary projects which will allow the team to accommodate increasing demand while providing more effective care and greater comfort for patients and their loved ones.

The Lipson Cancer Center completed phase one of its renovation and expansion project at the Rochester General

Left to right: Dawn Lipson, Urology Associates of Rochester Practice Manager Eileen Stone, Lipson Cancer Center Chief of Radiation Oncology Dr. Meri Atanas and Lipson Cancer Center Chief of Medical Oncology and Hematology Dr. Pradyumna Phatak Hospital location in fall 2014. To learn more about the upcoming project phases and how community support can help, contact Katie Bresnan, executive director of the Rochester General Hospital Foundation, at (585) 922-4860 or


WINTER 2014 / 2015


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Save the Date! Next year’s Rochester Regional Health System Gala is October 3, 2015

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