Information Session with BCH CEO Nils Gunnersen and Architecture Team

Join Bertrand Chaffee Hospital CEO Nils Gunnersen and representatives from the architecture firm that will design the new BCH Medical Arts Building on Tuesday, December 11 at 1 p.m. at the Concord Senior Center.

This will serve as an information session about the hospital and nursing home, and an introduction into the hospital’s exciting capital projects in 2019, including the construction of a new medical arts building. Feedback from patients and community members about this project is welcome.

BCH Adds Two Providers to Primary Care Center

Bertrand Chaffee Hospital has added two new providers to its Primary Care Center in Springville. Daniel Karstedt, PA and Kenneth Dabolt, PA will start seeing patients this summer.

Daniel Karstedt, PA specializes in family medicine and earned his master’s degree from Mercyhurst University in Erie, Penn. Prior to attending school for his physician assistant training, he spent four years at Mercyhurst where he earned a bachelor’s of science in biology. Karstedt is originally from Eden and is a graduate of Eden Jr./Sr. High School. Throughout his clinical year, he gained experience in primary care and has a particular interest in dermatology and sports medicine. He is a member of the American Academy of Physician Assistants.

“I hope to establish healthy long-term relationships with my patients. I am excited to provide accessible health care to those in our rural community as I grew up and reside in a small town and understand the importance of keeping health care close to home,” said Karstedt.  “I believe the close-knit community at Bertrand Chaffee Hospital will provide a very rewarding experience as a health care provider.”

Kenneth Dabolt is a resident of Sardinia and earned his physician assistant degree from Daemen College. His clinical rotations included ob/gyn, emergency medicine, dermatology, plastic surgery, general surgery and pediatrics. He is a member of the Western New York Physician Assistant Association and the American Academy of Physician Assistants.

“I grew up in this area and I’m proud to be able to practice medicine in my hometown,” said Dabolt. “Primary care visits are an essential way for patients to maintain their good health, and I’m looking forward to contributing to better health outcomes in our region.”

CEO Nils Gunnersen noted that while many rural healthcare facilities are challenged in finding primary care providers, Bertrand Chaffee Hospital has been fortunate in that regard since opening its practice in 2010. “The talented physicians, physician assistants and nurse practitioners that we have recruited to Springville believe, as we do, in the value of rural healthcare.” The BCH Primary Care Center is accepting new patients and all major insurances. Call (716) 592-8140 for an appointment.

 

Shepherd Joins BCH Primary Care as Physician Assistant

Bertrand Chaffee Hospital has welcomed a new physician assistant to its Primary Care Practice as of June 2018.

Rebecca Shepherd, PA-C has been a physician assistant since 2006. She has worked in urgent care and emergency medicine departments in the Buffalo area, also having practiced alternative and complementary medicine in Buffalo and Fredonia.

She grew up in a family of physicians in Silver Creek, New York, and graduated with her physician assistant degree from D’Youville College. Prior to that, she earned a master of education degree from SUNY Fredonia, and spent many years teaching pre-K through high school, and working with persons with developmental disabilities.

“Shepherd is another great addition to our primary care practice,” said Nils Gunnersen, CEO. “We continue to recruit providers who believe in the value of local healthcare and who see the great things ahead for our facility, including the construction of a new medical arts building for primary care and specialty services.”

Shepherd also has a degree in naturopathy, and continues to be very interested in natural medicine, alternative therapies, nutrition, lifestyle changes and preventive medicine. “I moved to Ellicottville four years ago to enjoy more time outdoors and a more active lifestyle,” said Shepherd. “I am very pleased to be working so close to home in the wonderful community of Springville.”

The practice is accepting new patients and also accepts all major insurances. For an appointment, call (716) 592-8140.

One-stop Healthcare at BCH

It’s Wednesday – auction day – in Springville, but Jane W.* has other plans. Starting at 10 a.m., Jane pulls up to the front entrance and uses the valet service to park her car for the day. Jane has used a cane to get around for a few years, and the convenience of the valet is one reason she doesn’t mind her regular visits to Bertrand Chaffee Hospital.

After visiting the registration department to sign in for lab work and imaging tests, Jane heads down the hall to the lab for a series of blood tests recommended by her oncologist. She’ll be seeing her primary care provider later in the day, and the results will be sent to both physicians.

Jane ventures further down the hall towards the Imaging Department. Her oncologist also recommended a chest x-ray, and she will spend the next half-hour with that procedure. Though her specialist is located in the Amherst, Jane has been able to do a surprising amount of the tests, surgical preparation and follow-up at her local hospital. The long trips north have been limited to the cancer surgery itself and in-office consultations with the specialist team.

It’s lunchtime now, and Jane gives her daughter – who works at BCH – a quick call to see if she can take a break. She can, and they eat sandwiches and soup from the coffee shop at the comfortable tables in the lobby.

But Jane is barely halfway through her day at BCH. With some time to spare before her afternoon appointment for a mammogram with the hospital’s new state-of-the-art 3D mammography service, Jane makes her way over to the Jennie B. Her own mother, Gloria, has been a resident at JBR for several years following an injury that required major surgery. Both have lived in Springville all their lives, and for Gloria to remain in her home community for nursing care has been a blessing for her family.

A few minutes before her mammogram, Jane walks back across the campus back to the Imaging Department. After an uneventful mammogram, Jane grabs a cup of coffee at the coffee shop to take her through the rest of the afternoon, placing it in her walker for the ride up the elevator to primary care.

Her appointment at the Primary Care Center with Dr. Heidelberger is one of the last of the afternoon. He reviews the results of her lab work from the morning, before having a discussion about her health conditions and talking through her continuing treatment plan with her oncologist. He makes recommendations for what to do before her next visit in three months.

If ever there were an example of keeping healthcare local, Jane has made it. She has been able to use the hospital’s robust outpatient services and Primary Care Center, and also take comfort that her elderly mother is well cared for at the Jennie B. Richmond Nursing Home.

This is based on an experience of a patient at Bertrand Chaffee Hospital. Names and some details are changed, and this story is used with permission.

Melanye Deuble-Hankins, PA Joins BCH Primary Care Center

Melanye Deuble-Hankins will join the Bertrand Chaffee Hospital Primary Care Center on Monday, November 27 as a physician assistant.
Deuble-Hankins has nearly two decades’ experience as an NCCPA-certified physician assistant, and has worked in cardiology and clinic settings. As a primary care provider at an occupational health clinic in Salamanca, she has also been in charge of emergency response for about 13 years.

“I am so happy to be joining the Bertrand Chaffee Hospital medical staff,” said Deuble-Hankins. “I am looking forward to greeting patients with a genuine smile, a willing ear, and sound judgement. I never forget what an honor and privilege is it, to be caring for you and your family!”

Deuble-Hankins began her career in the healthcare field as an ambulance attendant and flight medic with the STARFLIGHT program in Jamestown, New York. She moved into cardiology as a cardiac ultrasound technologist before earning a bachelor’s degree from D’Youville College. She has been a physician assistant in medical offices in Chautauqua County and Cattaraugus County, bringing extensive cardiology diagnostics training to the care she gives to her patients.

“Our primary care practice has been able to recruit patient-focused providers to our staff since opening in 2010,” said Nils Gunnersen, BCH CEO. “We’re excited to have Melanye join our team.”

The BCH Primary Care Center is scheduling patients with Deuble-Hankins immediately, and she will be accepting all major health insurances. For an appointment, call (716) 592-8140.

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BCH Adds Blood Pressure Classes for Primary Care, Cardiac Patients

Blood Pressure CuffDue to popular demand, Bertrand Chaffee Hospital is extending its blood pressure classes for BCH Primary Care Center and BCH Heart Center patients. Participants receive a free blood pressure cuff and journal.

August 28, 6 p.m.
September 6, 10 a.m.
October 2, 7 p.m.
November 9, 10 a.m.
December 4, 7 p.m.

Sometimes, patients may have “white-coat syndrome,” where nervousness or anxiety about seeing a healthcare provider can lead to an elevated blood pressure reading. A running log, kept at home in a familiar environment, provides very useful data about whether that is the case or not.

“In the Primary Care Center and Heart Center, we are seeing patients bring their three-week blood pressure logs in with them to appointments,” said Lauralee Sprague, NP. “That record gives providers a clearer picture of a patient’s blood pressure, not just at the time of their visit.”

All classes are held at Bertrand Chaffee Hospital, patient education classroom (basement). The class is free for all Bertrand Chaffee Hospital Primary Care Center and Heart Center patients, but registration is required. Call (716) 592-9643.

Technology Upgrades and Access to Services Focus of $11.3 Million Award to BCH

Thank you Banner, GrantThe announcement of an $11.3 million New York State grant application by Bertrand Chaffee Hospital came on July 18. This award is the largest in Bertrand Chaffee Hospital’s history.

“We’ve created a dynamic set of offerings with our inpatient and outpatient medical services,” said Teresa Donohue, CFO. “What we have aligns Bertrand Chaffee Hospital with the goal of New York State: to ensure that the healthcare system can meet the needs of current and future generations of New Yorkers.”

The hospital expects to begin investments in technology that will enhance access to advanced diagnostic capabilities before the end of the calendar year.

“The larger question is, what does this award mean for the future of healthcare in our community?” said BCH CEO Nils Gunnersen. “We took a strategic approach to design our application and outlined projects that are a direct, proactive response to community health needs.” He continued, “Improved access to healthcare leads to better health outcomes, and that’s our ultimate goal for our community. Keeping healthcare local is the essence of keeping our patients healthy.”

“BCH is a vital community resource, providing much-needed health service, and is a leading economic engine for our region,” said Gary Eppolito, president of the BCH board of directors. “With this award we can accelerate the progress we have made to improve health services for our neighbors.”
Bertrand Chaffee Hospital will keep patients, employees and neighbors informed about progress at each phase through its web site. Input and feedback about our new building will be solicited from patients, employees, medical staff and the community.

This $11.3 million award was included in New York State’s announcement of $44.6 million in projects for Western New York, part of $491 million in investment statewide.

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Comments from local elected officials:

NYS Senator Patrick Gallivan: This funding will help ensure that all New Yorkers have access to high quality health care, especially individuals and families who live in rural communities. Investing in medical facilities and programs is something everyone can support in our ongoing effort to make New York a healthier place to live.

NYS Senator Catharine Young: I am thrilled that Bertrand Chaffee Hospital, which serves people in the northern region in my district, also will receive major state funding to upgrade and strengthen their services!

NYS Assemblyman David DiPietro: Keeping healthcare local is important to our rural communities. Bertrand Chaffee Hospital is a great hospital with wonderful staff that cares for countless patients daily. I’ve worked hard in Albany to secure $11.3 million in grant funding so Bertrand Chaffee Hospital is able to purchase new imaging equipment, further primary and specialist services and build on information technology services. Investing in quality healthcare is important.

Cattaraugus County Legislator Richard Helmich: “This is truly tremendous in many ways. I am proud that Cattaraugus County Legislature stood up and wanted to be counted in the struggle. I’ll be glad to advocate for Bertrand Chaffee Hospital anytime.”

Town of Ashford Supervisor Charles Davis: Congratulations on your grant and if you ever need any support from the Ashford town board or myself do not hesitate to reach out.  The hospital is a vital part of our community and it’s here because of the hard work of people like you.

Village of Springville Mayor William Krebs: The Village of Springville is thrilled that Bertrand Chaffee Hospital received the Statewide Healthcare Facility Transformation Grant of $11.3 million.  The grant will fund the needed technology and site development to keep our community hospital competitive in regional health care. Congratulations and thanks to the leadership and staff of our Bertrand Chaffee Hospital.

Cordelian Club Presents Gift for BCH Emergency Department

Cordelian Club 2017Thanks to the efforts of the Cordelian Club, the Bertrand Chaffee Hospital Foundation received a gift that will fund equipment in the Emergency Department.

The purchase of an ocular tonometer, which measures eye pressure, and additional equipment for the ED will proceed because of this donation.

Each year, the Cordelian Club coordinates a party like no other in town. This year’s theme was a tribute to Prince, and it continued a long tradition of dances that have changed with the times but have always supported the hospital.

Pictured from left: BCH Foundation President William King, Shelly Baronich, Primary Care Center Medical Director William Wnuk, MD, Dance Chairperson Kelly Baker, BCH Foundation Board Member Jessica Sullivan, Cordelian Club President Amy Wnuk, BCH Board and Foundation Board Member Stanley Handzlik, BCH Emergency Department Nurse Manager Penny Gardner, RN, BCH Primary Care Nurse Manager Kim Bockhahn, LPN.