NEWARK, NJ – January 30, 2012 - Newark Beth Israel Medical Center (NBIMC) and Children’s Hospital of New Jersey (CHoNJ) received high honors from the New Jersey Hospital Association (NJHA) at its Annual Meeting on Friday, January 27. Three of the top five NJHA awards distributed statewide were presented to NBIMC and CHoNJ.
“We are honored that the NJHA recognizes the extraordinary work of Rajiv Verma, M.D., our ICU Unit, under the direction of Jennifer LaRosa, M.D., and our Urban Garden, under the direction of Barbara Mintz, AVP Wellness,” said John A. Brennan, MD, MPH, President and Chief Executive Officer of NBMIC and CHoNJ. “Clinical excellence and community commitment are our primary goals at The Beth. These outstanding physicians and employees, services and programs are representative of the nearly 3,500 employees of our healthcare institution.”
The top NJHA award was presented to Rajiv Verma, MD, who received the 2012 NJHA Healthcare Leaders Award - Healthcare Professional of the Year. Dr. Verma is Director of the Children’s Heart Center - Children’s Hospital of New Jersey at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center. In accepting the award, he said, “Thank you to the NJHA and for the employees of the cardiac program at CHoNJ for their pure passion for the work we do every day. New Jersey needs and deserves at least one comprehensive cardiac care program in the state.”
Dr. Verma has dedicated his career to building New Jersey’s most comprehensive pediatric cardiac program and continues to increase and enhance the care available to infants, children and teens with congenital heart disease and their families.
Dr. Verma’s vision and pursuit of excellence has brought the finest pediatric cardiac care close to home. Under his leadership, a team of multidisciplinary experts in an extraordinary range of highly specialized diagnostic testing and advanced treatments care for more than 1,000 children and adults with congenital heart disease each year. Providing this level of care in New Jersey eases the emotional and financial strain on families who would otherwise have to travel out-of-state.
Dr. Verma has performed several medical firsts for New Jersey and his exceptional skills continue to elevate pediatric cardiac care in this region and beyond. He continues to be at the cutting edge of the most advanced minimally invasive treatments for complex congenital heart disease. This year, he was the first in the state to implant the Melody pulmonary valve. This technically advanced catheter-based procedure prevents the need for open heart surgery —as well as its risks and complications – in patients who may have already undergone multiple heart surgeries in their lifetime. Dr. Verma is also experienced in performing hybrid procedures that combine catheter-based and surgical techniques to treat congenital heart malformations while minimizing the risks of cardiopulmonary bypass in young patients.
It was under Dr. Verma’s direction that the Children’s Heart Center entered into a prestigious partnership last year with NYU School of Medicine to establish a collaborative pediatric cardiac surgery program that ensures infants and children have improved access to the most advanced surgical treatments at Children’s Hospital of New Jersey with immediate and smooth referral to NYU when necessary.
Dr. Verma and his team go far beyond providing clinical care. Together, they have transformed families with nutritional counseling and other essential resources that support chronically ill children and their siblings. Despite the severe economic pressures that have affected the delivery of health care in recent years, the team’s determination kept these vital services available for those who needed it most. He is active in educating pediatricians throughout the state in screening children for latent heart disease.
The Newark Beth Israel Medical Center Intensive Care Unit received NJHA’s Excellence in Quality Improvement Award. This award was presented for NBIMC’s work on Interdisciplinary Rounds and urinary infections related to catheters and central venous catheter days and rates of infection. The IDT rounds have had a marked impact on reducing the number of urinary catheter and central venous line days in ICU patients. The ICU Award was presented to Jennifer LaRosa, MD, FCCP, Associate Division Director and Director, ICU and Fellowship Program.
The third award is the NJHA’s HRET Community Outreach Award for The Beth Garden, located across the street from the hospital on Lyons Avenue in Newark. The garden, under the direction of Assistant Vice President of Wellness Barbara Mintz, is part of the medical center’s community partnership with Garden State Farms to provide fresh vegetables and fruits to neighborhood school children and families. The farm grew out of an indoor farmers market in December 2010, which became an earth box garden and farm, with organic vegetables, fruits, and herbs and is providing the South Ward with affordable organic produce as well as nutrition education through, hands on farming, nutrition analysis and recipes. The farm also provides job training for ex-offenders and the developmentally disabled and is connecting the diverse cultures that are the foundation of Newark.
This is the second time in three years, NBIMC has received the Healthcare Professional of the Year Award. Two years ago, the award was presented to Mark Zucker, MD, JD, Director of the Heart Failure Treatment and Transplant Program at NBIMC. The transplant program continues to be recognized for quality outcomes and a record number of transplants performed, 63 total in 2011, 11 more than 2010.
Dr. Brennan said, “For us at The Beth, success is defined by quality outcomes and quality service with world-class physicians, clinical excellence and community commitment.”
Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, (NBIMC), a 673-bed regional care teaching hospital, provides comprehensive health care to its local communities and well beyond. NBIMC has more than 800 physicians, 3,200 employees and 150 volunteers with over 300,000 outpatient visits and 25,000 admissions annually. NBIMC is fifth in the nation in the number of heart transplants with better than expected outcomes, has the only lung transplant program in New Jersey, and combined with Saint Barnabas Medical Center, both Saint Barnabas Health Care System affiliates, is third in the nation for kidney transplants, by volume. To learn more, visit us on line at www.newarkbeth.com
Children's Hospital of New Jersey, located at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center and part of the Barnabas Health, is the state's premier hospital caring for children, with specialized services to treat ill and injured children from newborn to adolescent years and has the most comprehensive pediatric cardiac care program in the region as well as preventive programs that promote wellness in the community. For a referral to a pediatrician or pediatric specialist, please call 1-888-724-7123.
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Date: February 1, 2012
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