2006 News Stories

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The Queen's Medical Center has completely banned smoking, effective November 16, 2006. Smoking will not be allowed in any location on QMC grounds and all Queen's properties. The smoking ban coincides with the effective date of the new State smoking law and the Great American Smoke-Out. The Legislature passed Act 295 into law to protect the public health and welfare from exposure to secondhand smoke by prohibiting smoking in places open to the public and places of employment. The statewide smoking ban includes bars, nightclubs, restaurants, retail stores, shopping malls, airports, convention centers, educational facilities and health care institutions. The State Department of Health will enforce the law, and institutions such as Queen's will be responsible for posting signs that clearly state that smoking is prohibited.

Health care professionals have long stated that tobacco smoke is a major contributor to many health problems. Queen's believes the smoking ban is in the best health interests of employees, patients, visitors and all others. The new State law provides an opportune time to prohibit smoking at any location on Medical Center grounds. Although the law does not necessarily ban smoking in areas far away from buildings, it allows business and organizations to declare an entire establishment and its property smoke free, a course Queen's has decided to follow.

Queen's realizes that the State smoking ban may create difficulties for many who smoke. A variety of education, resources, programs and other support are available for those who wish to quit. Smokers may also want to consider asking their doctors about prescription medication that helps stop craving for cigarettes and eliminates the pleasure derived from smoking. Patient care staff will continue to ask patients and families about quitting, give advice on quitting, offer cessation information or refer them to the Hawai’i State Quitline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1.800.784.8669). The Quitline will accept consented, faxed referrals; the form can be found at www.CallitQuitsHawaii.org. For more resources and information, call the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345 or visit www.cancer.org. If you smoke, consider taking advantage of this opportunity to ban smoking from your life.

Daniel Fischberg, MD, PhD, and Beth Freitas, APRN, clinical nurse specialist, have been recognized by Hospice Hawai’i for their outstanding work. Dr. Fischberg received Physician of the Year honors and Freitas the Allied Health Care Professional of 2006 Award. Both are a part of The Queen's Medical Center's Pain and Palliative Care team, which also includes Lydia Kumasaka, APRN, Joan Maeshiro, RN, Lynn Muneno, RN, Hob Osterlund, APRN, and Stacy Terashita, medical social worker. Today's broadly inclusive field of palliative care is defined as medical treatment that focuses on the prevention and relief of pain, and other symptoms and distress for people living with serious illness. Queen's is a leader in the field, and one of the few hospitals in the nation to combine the two disciplines of pain and palliative care with an extensive multi-disciplinary team approach to meet any and all of a patient's needs.

"Beyond trying to have an impact in the hospital, we need to affect care beyond our walls and within the community to build resources, networks, anything that will meet the gaps in care for people living with serious illness," says Dr. Fischberg, who is medical director of Queen's Pain and Palliative Care Department. "Palliative care really is about quality of life, about the possibilities that exist before the end-of-life."

Dr. Fischberg says that it's critical to make sure everyone involved is talking to each other, that a balance is found between the needs of the hospital and those of the patient and family. "It takes a lot of time to take really good care of people and to coordinate that care," he noted. Dr. Fischberg and Freitas see education as another key to good palliative care. Both speak in the community regularly and work with the legislature to effect important change on issues for people living with serious illness. Speaking at other hospitals, conferences, expos, luncheons, off-island or "wherever people are," they work with other health care professionals to increase awareness of options and services and help to develop skill or offer new approaches on palliative care. "We serve the clinician, the patients and of course, the families," says Dr. Fischberg. "We ask patients what it is they hope for and work with them to achieve it."

If you are a patient at the new Queen's Health Care Centers Hawai’i Kai Clinic, you'll probably feel better just walking in the door. It's that nice. The clinic is anything but clinical. Eye-pleasing architectural features, such as an entranceway skylight and windows that look out onto the turquoise waters of the Hawai’i Kai Marina, are complemented by soothing colors and textures throughout the 11,000 square foot standalone medical office building.

The new Hawai’i Kai Clinic is located between Safeway and Cha Cha Cha Salsaria, at the opposite end of the Hawai’i Kai Shopping Center from the old location, which was very small, at just 1,800 square feet. The Clinic offers unparalleled medical services in the Hawai’i Kai are, providing a comprehensive ambulatory center to the East Honolulu community.

For the first time, QHCC has collaborated with The Queen's Medical Center and Diagnostic Laboratory Services (DLS) in the same location. QMC offers x-ray, mammography, bone density screening, rehab services (physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy beginning in July) and non-invasive cardiac screening (and at a future date treadmill and stress testing). The diagnostic services, which are considered satellites of the various Queen's departments, are available to everyone, not just those who have physicians at the Hawai’i Kai Clinic. DLS has a full service draw station for the testing of bodily fluids in the new building. The Hawai’i Kai Clinic provides primary care physicians and a broad range of specialty services, including cardiology, OB/GYN, rheumatology, dermatology, urogynecology, podiatry, general surgery and geriatrics. Specialty services, which are available on a rotating basis, will soon be in full swing.

QHCC Hawai’i Kai Clinic hours are 8:00am to 6:00pm Mondays through Fridays and 8:00am to 2:00pm Saturdays. The Hawai’i Kai Clinic will add early evening hours in the near future. For more information or to set up an appointment, call 808.396.6675.

The Queen's Medical Center recently celebrated the grand opening and blessing of the Physicians' Office Building III (POB III). The event was major milestone for Queen's. Combined with POBs I and II, the Queen's campus is now home to the single largest concentration of physicians in the State of Hawai’i. All three POBs offer a convenient downtown location and easy access to the advanced technologies and treatments at Queen's.

Formerly the Honolulu Medical Group building, POB III, which sits on the corner of South Beretania and Lauhala Streets, has been completely renovated with a modern, new entrance and lobby. About 25,000 square feet were added to the existing building for a total of approximately 100,000 square feet.

In addition to the close proximity of the many services at The Queen's Medical Center, POB III offers a Diagnostic Laboratory Services (DLS) branch in the lobby, a POB III Pharmacy, Queen's Imaging services and a cozy coffee and snack bar.

"[Having] the largest concentration of doctors anywhere in the State...means our patients will have access to many more doctors—both primary care and specialists—in one location," said Mark Yamakawa, QMC Executive Vice President for Corporate Development. "We are confident that the physicians and services available at POB III will enhance the overall patient experience for everyone who comes to Queen's for care."

The Queen's Medical Center recently received the American Stroke Association's Get With The GuidelinesSM-Stroke (GWTG-Stroke) Initial Performance Achievement Award. The award recognizes Queen's commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of stroke care by ensuring that stroke patients receive treatment according to nationally accepted standards and recommendations.

"With a stroke, time lost is brain lost," said Cherylee Chang, MD, FACP, Medical Director of Queen's Neuroscience Institute and Neurocritical Care and Director of the Queen's Stroke Center. "Queen's stroke standards address the important element of time." Queen's developed a comprehensive system for rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients admitted to the emergency room. This includes being ready 24 hours a day, seven days a week to provide brain imaging scans, having neurologists available for evaluations and using clot-busting medications when appropriate. To earn the award, Queen's consistently complied with GWTG requirements, including aggressive use of medications like tPA, antithrombotics, anticoagulation therapy, DVT prophylaxis, cholesterol reducing drugs and smoking cessation education.

"The American Stroke Association commends Queen's for its success in implementing standards of care and protocols," said Lee H. Schwamm, MD, national GWTG Steering Committee Member and Director of Acute Stroke Services at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. "The full implementation of GWTG guidelines is a critical step in saving the lives and improving the outcomes of stroke patients."

For more information about stroke and stroke care at Queen's, visit the Stroke Center on this website (found under the "Departments and Services" link).

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