In FY 2019, Milford Regional continued its ongoing commitment to provide better access to healthcare services and the very latest in superior technologies. Knowing access is central to delivering our high quality services to patients, Milford Regional expanded its reach by opening the new Milford Regional in Franklin facility and completed renovations of the Medical Center’s fourth floor. In addition, several new technological advancements expanded access to early diagnosis and treatment for a variety of illnesses. Each of these initiatives has focused on offering greater access to leading edge healthcare throughout the 23 towns that Milford Regional serves.
Fourth Floor Reimagined for Cancer and Palliative Care
Milford Regional’s fourth floor originally opened in 1964 to provide rooms for medical/surgical patients. After serving patients for more than a half-century, it was time for a major renovation. In FY 2019, a dramatic transformation reconfigured the 44-bed space into 15 spacious, private rooms designed specifically with the care and treatment of cancer and palliative care patients in mind. Through the collaboration with Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center at Milford Regional, leaders inside the hospital felt it was of paramount importance to design the renovated floor to address the unique treatment, needs and concerns of these patients. The result is a soothing atmosphere to support not only the physical, but social and emotional needs of our patients. From murals that emanate the beauty of nature to comfortable sofa chairs that accommodate family and friends, each room has its own unique feeling of calm and serenity. The ribbon was cut on April 2 and welcomed its first patients later that month.
PHOTO LEFT: The official Milford Regional ribbon cutting ceremony celebrated the completion of the fourth floor renovation: (Pictured left to right) Karen Kmetz, Director, Inpatient Services; Steve Ellis, Chair, Commitment Campaign; Judy Kelly, VP, Patient Care Services and CNO; Elizabeth Fleming, Annual Giving Officer; Nicole Heim, Exec. VP & COO; Janna Rice, Asst. Nurse Manager, Consigli; Vascen Bogigian, Board Trustee, Chair, Building Committee; Stewart Washer, Nurse Manager, Fourth and Fifth Floor; Ed Kelly, President and CEO; Joe Boczanowski, Director, Facilities; Kim Molloy, Project Coordinator/Safety Officer; Laura Mann, Board Trustee, Steering Committee Member, Commitment Campaign; Emily Quinn, VP, Philanthropy, Exec. Director, Foundation.
Milford Regional in Franklin
In FY 2019, Milford Regional made a powerful statement cementing our commitment to the health and wellbeing of the residents of Franklin and the surrounding towns. A new attractive, three-story building located at 1280 West Central Street in Franklin opened to consolidate four of Milford Regional Physician Group’s (MRPG) Franklin medical practices: Franklin Family Practice, Franklin Primary Care, Franklin Pediatric & Adolescent Care and Franklin Rheumatology. It also added Urgent Care and expanded the Medical Center’s diagnostic imaging services to include x-ray, ultrasound, 3D mammography and lab collection, all under one roof. In FY 2020, there are plans to add an obstetrician/gynecologist practice and consider other specialties.
Spin Thoracic Navigation System™ Provides Best in Class Cancer Detection
In the past, diagnosing and staging lung cancer typically involved multiple diagnostic procedures by multiple specialists. Today, with Veran’s SPiN Thoracic Navigation System™, this revolutionary technology allows our thoracic surgeons to accurately navigate to lung nodules, and then biopsy those nodules regardless of size or location. This state-of-the-art Electromagnetic Navigation (EMN) system is similar to the GPS in your car. The technology uses the natural airways of the lungs as roadways. Using the data from the chest CT scans, the computer builds a 3D map. A physician then uses special instruments with tiny sensors in the tips in order to track their location while navigating to a lung nodule. The special instruments are then used to take biopsies. The SPiN Thoracic Navigation System™ helps physicians detect and diagnose the smallest suspicious nodules earlier to guide rapid cancer treatment.
The purchase of this leading edge technology sets the stage for the expansion of our lung cancer screening program in FY 2020, which includes additional staffing, enhanced computer technology and the introduction of Milford Regional’s Pulmonary Nodule Review Board.
Stryker’s SPY Portable Handheld Imager (SPY-PHI)
As of FY 2019, patients requiring plastic, reconstructive, colorectal and other surgeries may now benefit from an innovative imaging technology called SPY-PHI which help surgeons to make decisions during open surgery based on the quality of blood flow in vessels and micro vessels that provide oxygen to organs. Traditionally, surgeons relied solely on their clinical judgment to determine whether or not tissue was receiving adequate blood flow, known as perfusion, to remain viable or healthy. The ability to visualize perfusion intraoperatively may assist surgeons in many clinical decisions including whether to go direct-to-implant or how much tissue to remove during an operation.
Today at Milford Regional, surgeons can use SPY-PHI to see beyond what the human eye can see, which has the potential to achieving lower rates of postoperative complications and help improve patient outcomes.
Advanced Technology for Detecting Bladder Cancer
Blue light cystoscopy is a groundbreaking technology that significantly increases the detection of bladder cancer. Milford Regional is one of the first hospitals in the region to have this advanced technology. Bladder cancer is the sixth most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States. The American Cancer Society estimates that 81,190 new cases of bladder cancer are diagnosed in the United States each year and up to 50% of patients will have their bladder cancer recur – that’s the highest recurrence rate of any form of cancer.
Previously, a cystoscopy using just a white light only showed what was obviously visible to the naked eye, potentially leaving some other areas of cancerous tissue undetected. Using the blue light, a urologist is able to see that there may be other spots that could be cancerous and remove them. The blue light helps the urologist do a more complete job of detecting and removing superficial bladder tumors that may be invisible. By being able to detect bladder cancer early, it prevents it from rapidly recurring and saves the patient from making more frequent trips to the doctor and to the operating room.
Technology that Better Connects Your Health
In addition to investing in technology that enhances diagnostics and treatment, Milford Regional continues to upgrade its electronic medical record (EMR) technology to provide a more complete patient history and enable it to be shared with collaborating providers and institutions. In FY 2019, Milford Regional’s Board of Trustees approved an upgrade of the Medical Center’s electronic medical record (EMR) to Meditech Expanse. Expanse is a fully integrated EMR solution that will replace our multiple disparate information systems at Milford Regional. It will allow clinicians to see one continuous record for the patient’s entire stay, resulting in improved care coordination. Expanse is a web-based EMR system with clinical applications completely redesigned with input by physicians. It will communicate seamlessly with other health care facilities and systems through a connection to the Common Well Health Alliance, a Health Information Exchange. In addition, the quality of care and safety will be positively impacted through an enhanced patient and provider experience. Internally, patient experience will be better with one record across the inpatient and outpatient setting. Lastly, Expanse will increase the safety of care delivery through enhanced clinical decision support, increased access to information, improved transitions, improvements in efficiency and elimination of redundancies. The project was kicked off on Monday, January 28, 2019 with a go live date of the new EMR planned for spring of 2020.