TARPON SPRINGS - Florida Hospital North Pinellas has been ranked among the top-performing hospitals in Pinellas County in Consumer Reports’ 2014 Safety and Mortality Ratings.
Every year, Consumer Reports ranks nearly 2,500 hospitals on hospital safety, patient outcomes, patient experience and hospital practices.
Although no local hospitals ranked high on the 100-point scale, Florida Hospital North Pinellas’ score of 59 was still highest among Tampa Bay area hospitals.
“For us, it’s validation,” said Karen Owensby, chief clinical officer at Florida Hospital North Pinellas. “Obviously, in a hospital, safety and quality are the most important things. It’s one thing to measure yourself, but to have an outside entity say you’re safe, that means a lot.”
Countrywide, Miles Memorial Hospital in Maine ranked highest with a score of 78. In Florida, Parrish Medical Center, a not-for-profit hospital in Titusville, scored the highest at 68. But in Tampa Bay, the Tarpon Springs hospital found competition only among Morton Plant Hospital in Clearwater and South Florida Baptist Hospital in Plant City, both of which also scored 59. Lowest scores in the area included St. Petersburg General (25), Bayfront Health Dade City (31) and Northside Hospital (33).
ST. PETERSBURG - Heather Wood of Northside Hospital recently received HCA’s 2013 Frist Humanitarian Award.
Wood is a Certified Hand Therapist and licensed Occupational Therapist with the Rehab Services Department at Northside Hospital. She has participated in the education of the interns and residents at Northside Hospital in addition to giving community lectures on common hand injuries, participating in stroke support groups and ergonomics.
Wood has a master’s degree in Bible and in Judaic studies, and finds time to lead a weekly study group at the community library. She also has volunteered her time and finances to travel to Nicaragua to train, teach and serve in the area of hand therapy. She most recently volunteered for a medical mission in September 2013 traveling to China for two weeks to educate hand surgeons on the role of hand therapists and to lay the groundwork for future therapists to volunteer there and assist in establishing a functioning hand therapy clinic to support the great number of hand patients.
CLEARWATER - Morton Plant Hospital recently received Baby-Friendly status once again from the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund.
To achieve Baby-Friendly status, the hospital continues to demonstrate its ability to offer breastfeeding mothers the information, support and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies.
“Baby-Friendly status is a tangible recognition of our team’s commitment to creating a system of support for our breastfeeding mothers,” Marcia Albanese, director of women and children’s services at Morton Plant Mease, said in a press release. “Breast milk is uniquely suited for babies and their nutritional needs and helps protect against a host of illnesses for both children and mothers.”
SEMINOLE - The controversial issue of legalizing medical marijuana will be debated at the next Village Square program of the Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions at St. Petersburg College.
The program, titled “Medical Marijuana: Is Florida Going to Pot?,” will be from 6 to 8:15 p.m., Thursday, April 17, in the Conference Center of the Seminole Campus, 9200 113th St. N.
A distinguished panel will debate the issue. Speaking for the amendment will be Ben Pollara, campaign manager for United For Care, the organization behind the initiative petition campaign. Speaking against will be Carlton E. Turner, former assistant to the president and director of the White House Drug Abuse Policy Office, and the “Drug Czar” under President Ronald Reagan.
ST. PETERSBURG - Edward White Hospital recently received the Get with the Guidelines Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award for implementing specific quality improvement measures outlined by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association for the treatment of stroke patients.
Get with the Guidelines Stroke helps hospital teams provide the most up-to-date, research-based guidelines with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing death and disability for stroke patients. Edward White Hospital earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients at a set level for a designated period. These measures include aggressive use of medications and risk-reduction therapies aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients.
“Edward White Hospital is dedicated to providing the highest quality of care to our patients and The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get with the Guidelines Stroke helps us achieve that goal,” said Sharon Hayes, CEO of Edward White Hospital. “This award represents our continued commitment to putting our patients first and ensuring that they receive consistent, quality care based on internationally-respected clinical guidelines.”
CLEARWATER - Crabby Bill’s Clearwater Beach and Crabby’s Bar & Grill raised $7,003 in March to be donated to the Pediatric Cancer Foundation.
The two Clearwater Beach locations donated $1 from the sale of each Crab Trap and Malibu Punch Bucket.
Each location encouraged the staff to sell these two drinks specifically to help meet the store goal of $2,500 for the month. Staff also was instructed to educate guests on the Pediatric Cancer Foundation and its purpose.
Morton Plant Mease invites the community to attend free upcoming health seminars in May focusing on skin cancer, prostate cancer, heart disease and heart valve surgery options, stroke, knee pain and stress management for women.
The seminars will be presented at various Morton Plant Mease facilities and community centers around Pinellas County. To preregister for a health seminar, call 953-6877, or visit www.BayCareEvents.org. Following is a list of scheduled events:
- Skin Cancer Recognition and Prevention - Thursday, May 1, 12:30 p.m., at YMCA of the Suncoast, Teen Room, 1005 S. Highland Ave., Clearwater. Cynthia Miller, M.D., will discuss what skin cancer looks like and will offer details on how to prevent it.
BAY PINES - The Bay Pines VA Healthcare System will host a medical center renaming ceremony in honor of the late Congressman C.W. Bill Young on April 25, at 10 a.m.
The public ceremony will take place at the C.W. Bill Young VA Medical Center in Bay Pines in the courtyard located between Building 37 and Building 2.
U.S. House of Representatives Bill 3302 was signed into law (Public Law 113-49) by President Barack Obama Nov. 13, 2013. The law officially changed the name of the facility from the Bay Pines VA Medical Center to the C.W. Bill Young VA Medical Center in honor of the Congressman’s work on behalf of Veterans and their families during his 22 terms as a member of Congress.
PINELLAS PARK - Tucked away in Pinellas Park, for the past two years Suncoast PACE has offered seniors an alternative to moving into a nursing home as their health declines.
Designed for individuals 55 and older, this adult day care program offers a variety of classes and activities to keep attendees mentally and physically engaged despite any health issues they might have. Activities include everything from music and the arts to discussions of current events to fitness and games.
The Florida Department of Health recently recognized 37 communities - four of them in Pinellas County - as Healthy Weight Community Champions.
The cities of Clearwater, Largo, Pinellas Park and St. Petersburg will be honored with certificates signed by State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health John A. Armstrong, MD, FACS.
The certificates will be presented at public meetings with personalized Healthy Weight graphics that can be used in city documents and promotional items. A full list of the Champion Communities and best practices are at www.HealthiestWeightFL.com.
Boy Scouts Troop 10 meeting
DUNEDIN – Boy Scouts Troop 10 meets Wednesdays, 7 to 8:30 p.m., between September through June at 927 Louden Ave.
Call Peggy Ross at 641-5074.
Chess Club meeting
SEMINOLE – The Seminole Chess Club meets Wednesday, 6 to 9 p.m., at the Seminole Community Library, 9200 113th St. N.
Everyone is welcome, though they should know the basics of how to play. Chess sets will be provided and there is no charge to play.
Call Alan Bohrer at 748-2522 for more information.
Largo Toastmasters meeting
LARG0 – Largo Star Toastmasters Club 5933 meets Wednesdays, 12:05 to 1:05 p.m., at the Young Rainey Star Center, 7887 Bryan Dairy Road No. 120 in Largo. For more information, call John Rouisse at 488-8010 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The club is open to all residents and workers in the Largo, Pinellas Park and Seminole areas.
A Toastmasters club provides a supportive and positive environment where members have the opportunity to develop their oral communication and leadership skills. Come watch as members present speeches, develop leadership skills by serving in various club positions and participate in
Table Topics sessions in a relaxed yet structured one-hour setting.
Wednesday afternoon book club
TARPON SPRINGS – The Tarpon Springs Library offers a Wednesday afternoon book club called “Expand Your Horizons.” Fiction and non-fiction books from a variety of genres are discussed each month. For the date of the next meeting, call 943-4922 or email email@example.com.
Daughters of Italy meeting CLEARWATER – The Daughters of Italy Lodge 2825 will have its monthly meeting on Thursday, April 24, at the Clearwater Community Church, 2897 Belcher Road, Dunedin, in Room 206 of the education building.
Italian and non-Italian women are invited to attend. Coffee and dessert is served at 6 p.m., followed by a short general meeting. The guest will be a hospice worker, and the cultural program will include Italian regions that celebrate Italian Carnevale.
Extension garden tours LARGO – Vegetable, herb and tropical fruit garden tours will be offered Thursdays, April 10 and 24, 9 a.m., at Pinellas County Extension, 12520 Ulmerton Road.
The free tours will offer guests the opportunity to explore the vegetable garden and compost demonstration areas and learn how to grow food in home gardens.
The tour will include an array of culinary, medicinal and aromatic herbs, trees and flowers in the enclosed herb garden; the Egyptian, Mediterranean, Asian and beverage plantings; and tropical fruits that do well in the Florida climate including many varieties of bananas, figs, papayas, mangoes, avocados, sugar cane and citrus.
Attendees will learn about how featured plants can be in homes and will discover little-known fruits not usually considered by the home gardener including Jackfruit, Carambola, Buddha’s Hand and Pomegranate.
The tours will showcase a diversity of plantings including a wide variety of ground covers, bromeliads, palms and power-line friendly trees that can be used in the home landscape.
Tours are limited to groups of four to 16 people and are recommended for adults.
Free CPR and First Aid classes SEMINOLE – Seminole Fire Rescue is offering free basic CPR and First Aid classes. The next CPR class is scheduled for Thursday, April 24, 7 p.m. and the next Basic First Aid class is set for Thursday, May 1, 7 p.m.
All classes are taught at Fire Station 29, 11195 70th Ave. N.
Designed to help a person gain the confidence to help during an emergency, these classes are easy to understand and focus on the skills required to help save a life. The classes are not intended for professional certifications, but for the average individual.
Call 393-8711, ext. 210 for advance registration and information. Space is limited.
LARGO – A Overeaters Anonymous group meets Thursdays, 10:30 a.m., at Aldersgate Methodist Church, 9350 Starkey Road.
Overeaters Anonymous is a program of recovery for eating disorders.
For information, call Jeanette at 392-3108. There are no dues and no fees and a list of meetings may be viewed at oapinellas.org