05-09-2019 Lakeland named one of the nation’s 15 Top Health Systems; Lakeland and Mary Free Bed est

TOP 5 STUDENT ATHLETES… Every year scholars from each high school in the Southwestern Athletic Conference are selected based on the combination of Grade Point Average (GPA) and ACT/SAT scores. The top five students are then acknowledged in a luncheon where they receive awards for their outstanding achievement in academics. For 2019, Watervliet High School SAC All Academic Team is (from the left) Seated: Elaine Koshar and Brenna Langston; Standing: Hannah Nye, Lindsay Adams, and Emma Kraklau.


Lakeland named one of the nation’s 15 Top Health Systems

Spectrum Health Lakeland was named one of the nation’s 15 Top Health Systems by IBM Watson Health. The study spotlights the best-performing health systems in the U.S., based on a balanced scorecard of publicly available clinical, operational and patient satisfaction metrics and data.

This year’s 15 Top Health Systems study evaluated 337 health systems and 2,961 member hospitals to identify the 15 U.S. health systems with the highest overall achievement on a balanced scorecard. The scorecard is based on the 100 Top Hospitals national balanced scorecard methodologies and focuses on five performance domains: inpatient outcomes, process of care, extended outcomes, efficiency, and patient experience.

This is the second time Spectrum Health Lakeland has been recognized with the 15 Top Health Systems honor. Lakeland Medical Center in St. Joseph and Lakeland Hospital Niles were also named to the 100 Top Hospitals list in 2014 and 2019.

“We are proud to be the only health system in Michigan and northern Indiana recognized in the top 15 by IBM Watson,” said Loren B. Hamel, MD, President, Spectrum Health Lakeland. “Over the last decade we have been on a journey to provide quality, compassionate care to our friends and neighbors and this award is a direct reflection of this great work.”

Based on extrapolating the results of this year’s study, if all similarly-situated Medicare inpatients received the same level of care as those treated in the award-winning facilities: More than 60,000 additional lives could be saved; more than 26,000 additional patients could be complication-free; healthcare-associated infections would be reduced by 10%; patients would spend 38 minutes less in hospital emergency rooms per visit.

“The multi-year trend toward increased healthcare consolidation has shined a spotlight on health system performance, illuminating both the challenges of coordinating care across multiple facilities and the opportunities that can come with scale,” said Ekta Punwani, 100 Top Hospitals program leader at IBM Watson Health. “The institutions recognized in the IBM Watson Health 15 Top Health Systems study are providing a blueprint for how to improve quality, lower costs and achieve outstanding patient satisfaction on a consistent basis.” For more information, or to see a complete list of winners, visit www.100tophospitals.com.

Lakeland and Mary Free Bed establish orthotics and prosthetics joint venture, open location in St. Joe

Spectrum Health Lakeland and Mary Free Bed Orthotics and Prosthetics have joined together to create Mary Free Bed Orthotics and Prosthetics at Spectrum Health Lakeland, a joint venture providing advanced orthotic and prosthetic care for patients in southwest Michigan and northern Indiana. Located at 2500 Niles Road, Suite 9 in St. Joseph, the practice offers certified orthotists and prosthetists from Mary Free Bed who help fit patients with adaptive equipment such as cranial reshaping helmets, artificial limbs, and external braces designed to enhance and improve their functional ability after a serious injury, illness or other debilitating condition.

SERVING PATIENTS IN SW MI… Mary Free Bed Orthotics and Prosthetics at Spectrum Health Lakeland, a new joint venture, offers certified orthotists and prosthetists from Mary Free Bed to help fit rehabilitation patients locally with adaptive equipment. Pictured are certified specialists David Mysliwy (seated), Board Eligible CPO; and Pete Kapelke (standing), CPO.


“Lakeland and Mary Free Bed have worked together for years to meet the needs of our rehabilitation patients and we are pleased to formalize this new relationship,” said Scott Nolte, Director, Lakeland Rehabilitation. “This partnership means patients can find the same high-quality, compassionate rehabilitation care they have come to expect from Lakeland, with the addition of specialized orthotics and prosthetics care available close to home.” “From the time work began on this joint venture, we recognized Lakeland employees share our passion for serving patients. We’re excited to grow our relationship and provide outstanding orthotic and prosthetic services to southwest Michigan,” said Ron Mishler, Vice President, Mary Free Bed Orthotics and Prosthetics. “The healthcare industry is centered on collaboration and partnerships and we are looking forward to this new venture with Mary Free Bed as it will help us better serve our rehabilitation patients locally,” said Ray Cruse, Vice President, Business Strategy and Hospitality Services, Spectrum Health Lakeland. In 2015, Lakeland joined the Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Network, an innovative alliance of hospitals and providers throughout Michigan. The network was established in 2011 to extend Mary Free Bed’s expertise as one of the leading rehabilitation hospitals in the Midwest beyond its current hospitals to other settings, creating a seamlessly integrated system of rehabilitative care for patients.

Aging Mastery Program offered by Area Agency on Aging

Region IV Area Agency on Aging will offer the Aging Mastery Program beginning in June, in Dowagiac, St. Joseph and Paw Paw. This is a ten-week health and wellness program developed by the National Council on Aging (NCOA). It is a wonderful opportunity for adults to participate in and reap the benefits of this cutting-edge wellness program. The goal of the program is to empower adults to make and maintain small but impactful changes. The classes will explore navigating longer lives, physical activity, sleep, healthy eating and hydration, financial fitness, medication management, advanced planning, healthy relationships, falls prevention, and community engagement. For each of these classes, we will provide basic educational materials developed from highly trusted sources, a checklist of potential next steps, and a system for tracking behaviors. A couple who graduated from the program said, “Even when you think you are perfectly prepared for your later years, the Aging Mastery Program teaches you about ten very important areas in your life that will prepare you to get through it all with gratitude. Make time for all ten classes now – we have found the benefits to be huge!” The Aging Mastery Program (AMP) sessions will be held as follows: Cass County Council on Aging, Front Street Crossing, 227 S. Front Street, Dowagiac – every Tuesday, June 4 through August 6, from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m.; Area Agency on Aging, Campus for Creative Aging, 2920 Lakeview Avenue, St. Joseph – every Wednesday, June 5 through August 7, from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.; Paw Paw District Library, 609 West Michigan Avenue, Paw Paw – every Wednesday, June 5 through August 7, from 1:30 to 3:00 p.m. The course fee is $99 for the 10-week class series. Scholarships are available. Class size is limited and pre-registration is required. For more information or to register for a session, contact Tara Gillette at the Area Agency on Aging: taragillette@areaagencyonaging.org or (269) 408-4369.

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