A Renovation Nearly 100 Years in the Making

The new Henry Ford Hospital surgical lounge, nearly 100 years in the making, is finally complete and open for business.

But first, let’s review some history.

New Henry Ford Hospital Surgical Lounge

New Henry Ford Hospital Surgical Lounge

As I noted in my previous blog post, Henry Ford Hospital is entering its 100th year of operation.

The iconic building on the Boulevard, whose designer was Albert Wood, a young architect on the payroll of Ford Motor Company, was constructed by Albert A. Albrecht Company.

Construction started in 1917 and, on Dec. 21, 1921, patients were admitted to the new section of Henry Ford Hospital, the base four floors of our current hospital. Continue reading

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Our Patients in 1915

This week marks the beginning of Henry Ford Hospital’s 100th year of operation.

A few weeks ago, I was given a bound log book documenting the first 50 patients who were admitted to Henry Ford Hospital.

We had always acknowledged Oct. 1, 1915 as the first day of patients being admitted to Henry Ford.

This date is true for the actual completed hospital beds in the private-room building of Henry Ford Hospital, which today we call the “M” building.

Medical record log for Henry Ford Hospital's first documented patient.

Medical record log for Henry Ford Hospital’s first documented patient.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A few patients, however, were actually admitted before that date to the basement area of the hospital in open ward converted space — among them, our first documented patient, a stock handler with chronic back and leg pain and a morphine addiction, who was admitted on July 13, 1915.

The medical records are quite impressive.

The same cursive writing of Henry Ford Hospital that we use today is noted at the top of each page.

The handwriting is meticulous, and clearly not written by a physician with deplorable handwriting, such as myself. Continue reading

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Baby Wings

A few “Baby Wings” and their parents at Henry Ford Hospital had a special visit today from one of the Detroit Red Wings, someone who has been with the NHL for nearly 20 years – Daniel Alfredsson.

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“Baby Wing” Thaddeus, who joined the world at HFH this week, sports his new Red Wing beanie with his mom and Alfredsson.

For those of you who do not follow hockey, Alfredsson is a near lock for a spot in the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Before he joined the Wings this year, he was captain of the Ottawa Senators from 1999-2013 with almost all franchise scoring records. He played for the Swedish National team 13 times and won an Olympic gold medal in 2006.

Alfredsson – joined by Sandy Pierce, CEO of FirstMerit Michigan and Chair of the HFHS Board, and FirstMerit Mascot Franklin the Moose – visited a couple of families on the HFH labor and delivery unit to officially launch our new “Baby Wings” program.

Dr. Munkarah, Sandy Pierce, Alfredsson and Franklin the FirstMerit moose with our team on H3.

Dr. Munkarah, Sandy Pierce, Alfredsson and Franklin the FirstMerit moose with our team on H3.

Continue reading

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Game On Cancer

Today is a great day for the City of Detroit.

The Detroit Tigers are set to play a pivotal game three of the ACLS against the Boston Red Sox at Comerica Park.

And next door at Ford Field, we announced a unique new partnership with another amazing Detroit establishment – the Detroit Lions – to raise $15 million during the next three years for cancer research at the Josephine Ford Cancer Institute.

Our campaign is called “Game on Cancer,” and it offers a fun and creative way to get Lions fans and the community to join our “team” in the fight against cancer through an interactive 3D website of Ford Field.

Executive chairman of Ford Motor Company Bill Ford Jr. and his wife, Lisa, serve as the honorary co-chairs for “Game on Cancer.”

Former Detroit Lions wide receiver Herman Moore is helping to promote the campaign too by starring in the above TV commercial that “tackles” cancer.

“Game on Cancer” will officially launch Sunday, Oct. 20 when the Detroit Lions play the Cincinnati Bengals at Ford Field, coinciding with the Detroit Lions NFL national game day for breast cancer awareness.

Here’s how you can get in on the Game on Cancer: Continue reading

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Men Who Cook in the “D”

This year marked another successful “Men Who Cook” event on the Henry Ford Hospital campus.

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The men of Henry Ford and other companies across metro Detroit on Wednesday dished out Detroit’s finest creations – street tacos, chili dogs, hot wings, Vernors floats, Sanders hot fudge sundaes (for purposes of the greater good, we have suspended any and all healthy eating restrictions), and so much more – to raise funds for the Tom Groth Patient Medical Needs Fund.

The Center for Cancer Surgery serving up "pothole pot stickers"

The Center for Cancer Surgery team serving up “pothole pot stickers”

From 2004 – 2012, Men Who Cook has raised approximately $2.1 million for the Tom Groth Patient Medical Needs Fund, which provides health care, medication, equipment, medical supplies and social services to uninsured and underinsured patients.

All of you are aware of the increasing difficulty these patients and families face.

This fund is particularly for patients who do not have the resources for pay for basic medical needs. The Tom Groth Patient Medical Needs Fund is a vital contributor to the health and wellness of our patients, allowing us to provide:

  • $5 for the purchase of one week of oral blood pressure medicine
  • $75 for the purchase of a walker and safe ride home
  • $100 for the purchase of one day’s worth of IV antibiotics

I am sure Tom Groth, who was a great administrator and even better person, was smiling once again at the event to support the fund that he inspired. Continue reading

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The New Patient Gown

A couple of years ago, I posted on the blog – in 140 characters or less, as if I was live-tweeting from the hospital – about my experience as a patient undergoing an MRI.

You may recall a few of my “tweets” from that post: “Are any hospital gowns made for someone over 6 feet?” and “Need two gowns, you don’t want to see what’s behind #youtube.”

These are the same complaints we’ve heard for decades about the standard patient gown – it’s ill-fitting, uncomfortable and has a very drafty backside.

And now, we have a solution: A newly designed patient gown that’s comfortable, warm and keeps patient covered, yet still accessible to clinical staff.

Michael Forbes, a product designer at the Henry Ford Innovation Institute, talks with patient Ismail Khalil, M.D., a vascular surgeon from Lebanon who traveled to Henry Ford Hospital for a liver transplant. Dr. Khalil is wearing the new patient gown.

Michael Forbes, a product designer at the Henry Ford Innovation Institute, talks with patient Ismail Khalil, M.D., who traveled to Henry Ford Hospital from Lebanon for a liver transplant. Khalil is wearing the new gown.

The new patient gown – resembling a wrap-around robe that completely closes in the back and front – is being rolled out on several inpatient floors at Henry Ford Hospital.

It is among the first inventions to be made public by the Henry Ford Innovation Institute in collaboration with the College for Creative Studies.

The newly designed gown is:

  • Completely closed in the back, creating more privacy for patients
  • Made of a thicker, cotton/polyester blend material, which keeps patients warmer than the previous patient gowns
  • Double-breasted in the front, using three snaps, instead of ties, to close the gown
  • Intuitive in design, with different colored snaps and stitching along the left and right sides of the gown, making it easy for patients to put on
  • Accessible for IVs and other medical lines. The health care teams say it offers them uncompromised clinical access to the patient without needing to remove the gown

Continue reading

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Expanding Medicaid in Michigan

Henry Ford Hospital’s Chief Nursing Officer, Gwen Gnam, lent her voice and her more than 34-years of nursing experience to an important topic facing our state: The expansion of Medicaid in Michigan.

Gwen took part in the Michigan Health & Hospital Association’s campaign to expand Medicaid, sharing her story as a registered nurse in this video:

The decision of how federal money will be spent impacts our patients and our hospital.

The Expand Medicaid coalition – made up of Michigan hospitals, mental health care providers, physicians, community-based health centers, health plans, human service organizations and others – urges the state Legislature to join with Gov. Rick Snyder to expand Medicaid as states are authorized to do under the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA). Continue reading

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Leading the Way: The Future of Health Care

For the 2012 Henry Ford Hospital Grand Ball, we wanted to make a high-impact video that expresses the passion that we have for our great hospital’s past and its future.

Enter our creative partners from DBA. They donated their time and talent to create a video modeled after the popular TED talk format to serve as that vehicle.

Actors being far too expensive, we found someone else to read the lines. And read the lines…and read the lines. (How do actors do this every day?)

I hope the above video from the 2012 Grand Ball inspires, motivates and excites you about the future of health care at Henry Ford Hospital.

Change is coming, we are ready, we are Henry Ford Hospital.

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The Annual Quality Expo

This week marked Henry Ford Health System’s 21st Annual Quality Expo.

The Quality Expo, hosted at Henry Ford Hospital, offers an opportunity for all of Henry Ford Health System to showcase the innovations and improvements made by our employees, departments and hospitals in the areas of health care quality, patient safety and care delivery.

Leo, a therapy dog at Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital, is one of the most remarkable therapists that I have ever encountered. Leo and HFWH’s Pet Therapy Program were featured at the Quality Expo.

Henry Ford is the only health care provider in southeast Michigan to host such an event.

The Quality Expo’s features 70 projects, all of which are aimed at reducing medical errors and improving patient safety, quality and satisfaction.

As always at this event, I was truly impressed, as I walked through the poster presentations and spoke with colleagues, by the tremendous work being done by our health care teams to continuously enhance quality and safety throughout the system.

I did stop to see one of our employees, Leo, a therapy dog at Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital.

Leo is one of the most remarkable therapists that I have ever encountered.  He is calm, friendly, and extraordinarily soothing, and part of a great program of pet therapy throughout our System.  Within minutes of being with him, all of my concerns and anxieties were gone.

(Of course, my own dog, Co Co, previously feature in Doc In the D, continues to be the one I confide in the most.  Co Co’s colleague, Mr. Mo, aka Uncle Mo, provides coverage as needed. Sometimes both are needed to “treat” me.)  Continue reading

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Every Vote Counts

Tuesday, Nov. 6  is an important day for all.

Patient Bernie Mack with hospital volunteer Lizette W. on Monday during the Bedside Voting Project.

It is a day that can change the course of our nation, merely by what you choose to do on that day.

Many in our country may be disillusioned by politics.  Many may feel that an individual vote may not matter in a sea of other voters in a national election.

I will not bore you with the details of the times in which one person, one action or one vote changed the course of an election or the course of history.

Others have fought, been imprisoned and died for the right to vote.  Each of our votes are a critical acknowledgment of the importance of those sacrifices.

I do not care for whom you vote.

I trust in the collective wisdom of our people to choose wisely and in the best interest of our City, State and Nation.

My message is simple: Take time to vote on Tuesday.

The voting process is so vital that Henry Ford Hospital has taken major efforts to ensure our patients who are hospitalized on election day can still get out their vote.

Our volunteers on Monday assisted countless patients with emergency ballot applications, faxing it to the patient’s respective clerk’s office where a ballot is generated, and then driving to the clerk’s office to pick up the ballot and returning the sealed ballot after the patient completes it.

It’s quite an amazing process.

I want to thank all of our volunteers and staff  involved with the bedside voting project for their work to make every vote count this election.

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