Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Fauquier Health Calendar of Events for September

Saturday, September 7
Marshall Regional Health Fair
Where: Marshall Community Center
When: 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Details: Health demonstrations and screenings, and activities for children
More Information: 540-422-8580

Junior Chef Program – for ages 10 - 18
When: 9 a.m. to 12 noon
Cost: $45
Register: 540-316-3588

Breastfeeding Made Simple
When: 10 a.m. to 12 noon
Cost: $25 per person
Register: 540-316-3588

Monday, September 9
Your Childbirth Experience
Where: Fauquier Hospital Family Birthing Center
When: 7 to 9 p.m.
Details: 4 sessions; September 9, 16, 23, 30
Cost: $120     
Register: 540-316-3588

Tuesday, September 10
Congestive Heart Failure Support Group
When: 1 to 2 p.m.
Cost: Free
Register: 540-316-2640
Details: Participants must be diagnosed with congestive heart failure

New Mom’s Support Group
Where: Fauquier Health Family Birthing Center
When: 10 to 11:30 a.m.
Details: Free
Register: 540-316-3588

Thursday, September 12
Where: Fauquier Health Sycamore Room
When: 10 a.m.
Register: 540-667-2315

Friday, September 13 and 14
Your Childbirth Experience
Where: Fauquier Health Family Birthing Center
When: Friday, 6 to 9 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.          
Details: Weekend class
Cost: $120
Register: 540-316-3588

Saturday, September 14
Safe Sitter Babysitter Training
Where: Fauquier Health Sycamore Room
When: Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Cost: $60
Register: 540-316-3588

Chef Program – 18 and older
Where: Fauquier Hospital Bistro on the Hill restaurant
When: 9 a.m. to 12 noon
Cost: $45
Register: 540-316-3588

Saturday, September 21
First Aid/CPR/AED (Adult/ Infant and Child)
American Heart Association
Where: Fauquier Health Medical Office Building
When: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Cost: $85
Register: 540-316-3588

Tuesday, September 24
Congestive Heart Failure Support Group
Where: Fauquier Health Wellness Center
When: 1 to 2 p.m.
Register: 540-316-2640
Details: Participants must be diagnosed with congestive heart failure

Wednesday, September 25
Alzheimer’s and Dementia-Related Illnesses Support Group
When: 4 to 5:30 p.m.

Community Lecture
Where: Fauquier Health Sycamore Room
When: 7 p.m.
Details: “Preventing Baseball Pitching Injuries,” with BruceEdwards, physical therapist

Friday, September 27
Massage for Couples
Where: Fauquier Health Wellness Center
When: 6 to 8 p.m.
Cost: $55
Registration: 540-216-2640

Tuesday, October 1
Where: Fauquier Health Wellness Center
When: 1 to 4 p.m.
Cost: Free
Registration: 540-316-2652

Wednesday, October 2
Community Lecture
Where: Fauquier Hospital Sycamore Room
When: 7 p.m.
Details: “Conquering Urinary Frequency and Urgency,” with Dr. Kristin Williams, neurologist

Thursday, October 3 & 4
AARP Driver Safety Program
Where: Fauquier Hospital Sycamore Room
When: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Cost: $12 AARP members & $14 for non-members
Details: Participants must attend both sessions

Friday, August 23, 2013

Providing Some Perpective for the Consumer Reports Hospital Rankings

Consumer Reports recently completed hospital rankings for surgeries, and Fauquier Hospital’s ranking was below average. We at Fauquier Health take patient safety and quality very seriously. We strive to improve on a daily and perpetual basis, and advocate transparency through quality and patient safety data. All patients should have access to these relevant data and use all available tools at their disposal to assist them in making the right health care decisions.

We do feel that the methodology of the Consumer Reports rankings may have been flawed. For instance, the HCAHPS surveys used in their rankings considers data from 2009-2011 – and some data is from 2006-2008. By comparison, the most recent HCAHPS numbers (available on the Hospital Compare website) have Fauquier Hospital consistently at or above national averages.

Points to Consider in Consumer Reports’ Methodology

  • Consumer Reports gave Fauquier Hospital a low ranking for infections; in fact, we have not had a single hospital ICU-based infection since July of 2012. This is a statistic that any hospital would be proud to report. 
  • Consumer Reports used a definition of length of stay not in line with current standards. In fact, our current length of stay statistics – according to the standard CMS definition -- are actually lower than the expected length of stay for the groups studied.
  • Like most other hospitals, in 2012, we started to place an increased focus on preventing readmissions, and our current statistics – according to Hospital Compare -- are in line with state and national averages.
  • The Consumer Reports survey includes only Medicare patients. This is problematic because these patients tend to be sicker than other populations. About 50 percent of our patients are Medicare or Medicaid patients.
  • Consumer Reports used billing data. In our own analysis of patient safety, we use real-time clinical data. Clinical data is more accurate, detailed and current than billing data. The Consumer Reports story even acknowledges the shortcomings of billing rather than clinical data. 
  • Because we are a small hospital, the data tends to be skewed because of the small sample size.
  • The “safety scores” were created by Consumer Reports from several different kinds of data, from different reporting agencies and different time periods.
  • The Consumer Reports explanation of their own methodology includes several disclaimers about the quality of the data and suggests that consumers be cautious about comparing hospitals with different patient populations. However, this is not noted until page 27 of a 44-page “Hospital Ratings Technical Report.”

 At Fauquier Hospital, patient safety is our first priority. Our physicians and staff are constantly assessing and improving our procedures. As Rodger Baker, Fauquier Health CEO, stated in last week’s Fauquier Times’ story, “For the surgery that we do, I’d hold our results up against anybody.”

Monday, August 5, 2013

FOX News Television Features Fauquier Hospital Medical Camps

Colleen Shanney, clinical services technician at Fauquier Health and paramedic with the Warrenton Volunteer Fire Company, shows medical camp students how to secure an accident victim on a backboard. The “victim” is Holly Morris of the Holly Live show on Fox News DC.

Michele Glowicki, physician’s assistant with Blue Ridge Orthopaedic & Spine Center helps camper Christian DeMarco place a cast on Holly Morris of FOX 5.

Tedric Lolis, Clinical Services First Assist, instructs medical camp students Rachel Brown, Allison Hall, Julia Estes, and Marquesia Atwater in suturing while newscaster Holly Morris looks on.

Fauquier Hospital was featured on FOX DC television the morning of Wednesday, July 24. The show Holly Live, with FOX host Holly Morris, highlighted Fauquier Hospital’s summer medical camps for teens. Here's the video.

Three segments included interviews with campers and medical professionals, with a few surprises.
This is the sixth year that Fauquier Hospital has held its medical camps for students aged 13-18; the camps allowed 135 teens to experience the medical field in a hands-on and interactive way this summer.  Students with a serious interest in the medical field are able to try their hand at skills such as: blood typing, intubating (putting a tube down a patient’s throat), starting an IV, mixing medications, and participating in a mock code.

For 2013, the camp has added a third-level session for those 15 and over who have attended sessions one and two in previous years. Campers in the third session find out more about various physician specialties, including the growing field of telemedicine, and spend time in the nursing simulation lab at Lord Fairfax Community College.

Level 1 medical camp activities include typing blood in the lab, suturing, learning to intubate a patient, starting an IV, mixing medications in the pharmacy, and taking a behind-the-scenes tour of the medical imaging department. Students participate in a mock code in the emergency department, learn to calculate the appropriate equipment and medication dosage for pediatric patients, learn to take blood pressure, listen to heart and lung sounds, and harvest a cornea from a human eye. 

Level 2 activities include all of the following on the first day:  advanced suturing, casting (and cutting the cast off using the cast saw), wound care, and a backboarding and collaring session where students will learn to extricate an accident victim from a vehicle. On the second day, students complete a dissection, learn to do injections and blood draws, precipitate their DNA from a cheek swab, and participate in a discussion about medical ethics.

Level 3 medical camp activities include using the telemedicine equipment to connect to a neurologist, just as an emergency department doctor would if a patient was suspected of having a stroke, learning to perform nursing assessments, and participating in simulated scenarios in the nursing lab at Lord Fairfax Community College.  A mobile bio-skills lab will be on site on July 31 to provide students with more hands-on experience in an operating room environment.
Students may apply to medical camp each March and April and camps take place in June, July and August.

Meet Dr. Brian DeCastro, New Fauquier Health Urologist

Dr. Brian DeCastro, urologist, has joined Fauquier Health Urology. He can be reached at 540-316-3940.

Dr. Brian DeCastro

  • Specialty: Urology
  • Education: Bachelor’s degree from St. Bonaventure University in upstate New York; M.D. at Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, New York;  residency at Madigan Army Medical Center, Tacoma, Washington
  • Previous position: Stationed at Ft. Stewart Georgia outside of Savannah for five years
  • Age: 37
  • Office: 550 Hospital Drive, Warrenton (540-316-5940); 7915 Lake Manassas Drive, Lake Manassas (703-743-7300)
  • Website: www.fhdoctors.org

Fauquier Health is delighted to welcome Dr. Brian DeCastro, urologist, to its medical staff. He is just as happy to be at Fauquier Health. He said, “When I left the Army, my wife and I were free to move anywhere in the country. We both fell in love with Warrenton and Fauquier Hospital. Warrenton seems like an ideal place to raise a family.  Everyone here is so friendly and welcoming, and the hospital’s patient-centered care model suits me perfectly.”

We chatted with Dr. DeCastro recently about his approach to urology.

Q: Why did you choose urology as your specialty?   

I always thought I would choose family practice as a specialty, but when I worked during my third year with a local urologist, I found that I really enjoyed all of the surgeries and office procedures.  Urology is very satisfying because you have the ability to definitively help people.  It’s very rewarding to improve patients’ overall quality of life by treating urologic cancers, relieving kidney stone pain and correcting incontinence.


Q: What are the most common ailments that you see in your patients? 

Kidney stones, prostate cancer, bladder cancer, enlarged prostate/BPH, erectile dysfunction, low testosterone, urinary incontinence (leakage), kidney and ureteral cancer, male infertility, urinary tract infections, testicular cancer, testicular pain, vasectomies and neurogenic bladder.

Q: Are there any new techniques or treatments that are especially exciting? 

Urology is constantly growing and changing. Currently in urology we are making significant advances in the management of prostate cancer. We have the ability to laser stones through tiny scopes and improve incontinence. In the past 10 years there has also been an increased focus on testosterone replacement in men, with significant improvements in quality of life.

Q: Are your patients mostly men?  

That is a common misconception. Many urologic conditions affect both men and women --  kidney stones, different cancers (kidney, bladder), and neurogenic bladder. Both incontinence and urinary tract infections are more common in women.  Urology has long been thought to be associated with men, but a significant portion of my patients are female.  Urologists also treat several pediatric conditions as well. 

Q: Are there steps people can take to prevent urological problems?  

Here are a few examples of the importance of preventative medicine in urology:

·       Patients with kidney stones can drink more water, and avoid salt and oxalate-containing foods to minimize stone episodes. 

·       Smoking is the number one cause of bladder cancer and can contribute to erectile dysfunction. 

·       Weight loss can improve both testosterone levels and female incontinence. 

·       Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) screening in certain age groups can prevent advanced prostate cancer. 

Q: Do you have a special interest in any particular sub-specialty of urology? 

I truly enjoy all aspects of urology.  Prevention and management of kidney stones has been of particular interest to me. I also am very interested in men's health.  Over half of men over 50 suffer from low testosterone and erectile dysfunction. For years this area of medicine was neglected mostly because there were not many options to help them.  We now have several medications and even surgery for the management of erectile dysfunction.  There are several ways to improve testosterone levels and as a result overall quality of life (improved energy, mood, libido, and bone health).  There is also significant evidence that testosterone can improve glucose control in diabetics.

Q: What is your philosophy about patient care? 

The patient comes first.  It is that simple.  One of the advantages of joining the hospital (as opposed to starting a private practice) is that it allows me to focus on patient care.  That is why I went into medicine -- to help patients.