Palisades Medical Center (PMC) has been implementing dynamic public health initiatives that will define our healthcare delivery model in the future. Our strategic direction addresses the rapid changes in healthcare, including the development of new patient services that provide continuity of care, and enhance access to education, primary and specialty care that will ultimately improve the health status of our communities. We continue to progress with a full floor-to-ceiling renovation of all patient rooms. The new design and furnishings optimize patient comfort, privacy and safety. Our new Ambulatory Care Center, under construction on our campus, is progressing as planned and is scheduled to open in December.
We have reached new levels of achievement and have exciting plans for continued success. As a full member of the Hackensack University Health Network, PMC will give our patients access to world-class physicians and the best specialty care programs available. Since joining efforts in June 2012, we have established a successful partnership that supports and strengthens many of our existing programs, and we will build upon that existing relationship to expand other services such as neurology, oncology and orthopedic surgery.
Preparing the next generation of physicians brings vibrancy to our medical center. In June, we presented diplomas to our first graduating class of 21 medical residents who have completed their training. In July, 35 new residents began their first year of training with us after graduating from medical schools across the country, bringing our total number of residents to 75. This is a noteworthy and valuable program as a significant number of these residents will stay in, and continue to serve, our community.
PMC’s strategic plan aligns with the Affordable Care Act’s requirement for hospitals to identify, analyze and address the healthcare needs of their service areas. PMC’s Community Health Needs Assessment is the result of a collaborative effort of our community partners that worked throughout the past year to identify the most-pressing healthcare needs in our service area, including: Cliffside Park, Edgewater, Fairview, Guttenberg, North Bergen, Union City, Weehawken, and West New York. This comprehensive report is the result of a thorough assessment of our area’s healthcare profile, including a review of public health data, summary patient information from care providers, and new data obtained by means of focus groups, public forums and a community needs assessment survey. This assessment also includes action items and plans to address the prevailing healthcare concerns in our community. To view the Community Health Needs Assessment, please visit www.palisadesmedical.org.
During the hospital community needs assessment process, cardiovascular disease was selected as one of the most important health problems in our community, and also selected as a top chronic illness that community residents or family member experience. PMC has responded to this need by implementing an evidence-based Care Transitions Intervention Model for cardiac care. This program is working to accelerate the process of reducing readmissions, increase patient understanding of their disease, improve medication management, and improve care processes of heart failure and acute myocardial infarction patients.
This year, we also successfully implemented Jersey Health Connect and PMC. This important initiative allows patients and their healthcare providers to easily and securely access medical information to improve quality of care, prevent potential medical errors, and reduce unnecessary testing and treatments. To date, we have significantly exceeded our goal of patient enrollment in this essential program.
All of these efforts represent a solid foundation to support our public health initiatives that will help improve the well-being of our neighbors and our community. At PMC, we are proud of our strong tradition of focusing on community health outreach. Our clinical and medical staff, employees and volunteers work throughout the year with community leaders, municipal healthcare agencies, EMS representatives and other key partners to improve the lives of thousands of local residents by continually offering free health screenings, educational seminars, training and classes, facility tours and other activities. In fact, the New Jersey Hospital Association recognized our efforts with its Community Outreach Award. In 2014, we expanded our already-extensive outreach programs to produce the following impact:
5,000 uninsured and underinsured residents received free health screenings, including blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, heart rate, body mass index/BMI, peak flow and pulse oximetery.
2,500 residents learned directly from medical experts about key health topics, including obesity and nutrition, pain management, smoking cessation, diabetes, podiatry, and women’s health issues such as breast cancer.
88 community health fairs and events done in conjunction with partnering schools, employers, civic organizations, and religious congregations throughout our area to educate residents, improve access to care, and reduce health disparities.
A total of $20,679,315 investment in Community Outreach Programs and Charity Care Support.
We are very proud of our collective efforts to improve the health status of our communities, and are inspired by the commitment of our community stakeholders that work alongside us to fulfill our collective mission.