Pascack Valley Medical Center

On the Road Again with New Knees

Theresa Whitaker’s knee pain was getting in the way of her life. After years of suffering and trying to cope through pain medications, weight loss, and supervised exercise, she’d made up her mind. It was time to take action for a better quality of life. Fifty-three years old was way too young to give up her successful sales career and retire to a rocking chair. That’s just not her style.

From her first visit with Robert Kayal, M.D., FAAOS, she knew she was in the right place to recapture her quality of life. Dr. Kayal and his team began with a conservative approach but tests revealed that Theresa’s knees were bone-on-bone and a total solution was called for. Together, they decided to replace one knee and then the second, just two weeks later. Theresa eagerly embraced the tasks ahead. First on the list: attend Joint Camp at Pascack Valley Medical Center where the surgery would be performed. In a two hour session, potential joint replacement patients meet the staff, tour the facility, and gain a better understanding of the importance of physical therapy and rehabilitation. Theresa credits Joint Camp with giving her the knowledge to stay motivated after surgery and recognize the milestones achieved as her recovery progressed.

For Theresa’s new knee joints, Dr. Kayal chose custom-fitted implants. Dr. Kayal is a regional pioneer in this cutting-edge system that utilizes computer-assisted navigation technology. Based on multiple MRIs and scans of Theresa’s knee joints, Dr. Kayal developed a specific map for incisions, joint alignment, and implant insertion before the actual surgery occurred. However, the ultimate success of Theresa’s new knees would depend on many factors including her determination to achieve a renewed quality of life. Her positive attitude helped her through the rigorous rehabilitation and physical therapy regimen, which began even before the first surgery.

Pascack Valley Medical Center in Westwood offers patients exceptional medical care with 4-star amenities including all private rooms at no extra charge. Post surgery, Theresa found that much is expected of joint replacement patients. Hospital staff members were kind and understanding as well as thorough in making sure she received excellent day-to-day care and that physical therapy was begun promptly. Thanks to the hospital and Dr. Kayal’s Circle of Care, Theresa was back to work at her rigorous sales job in three months. She credits both the hospital and his practice for their ease of scheduling appointments, scans, and therapies, as well as assisting her with the coordination of paperwork needed for insurance and disability coverage. In opting for total knee replacement at Pascack Valley Medical Center, Theresa was able to regain her zest for life and her ability to fully participate in it.

President’s Message

Since June of 2013, Pascack Valley Medical Center has proved to be a leader in health care in Bergen County. We are committed to providing high-quality care to the Pascack and Northern Valley communities and, in 2016, it was evident that we delivered on our promise.  Listening to the needs of the local community has enabled us to continue to grow and thrive.

I am proud of the many accomplishments in 2016 by our team of dedicated health care professionals at this world-class medical center. One of our most notable accomplishments was the opening of our brand new Emergency Department in October. The new, state-of-the-art ED allows us up to provide the best emergency care in Bergen County to our residents. The newly opened space, coupled with our efficient turnaround times and excellent patient experience, proves that we are leader in providing the high-quality care that our residents expect from our medical center.

Pascack Valley Medical Center also saw great success over the last year when it came to providing exceptional care and an excellent patient experience. Our team of health care professionals successfully completed three Joint Commission recertification surveys, which was made possible by the teamwork, dedication and pride in our world-class facility.

To that end, I am proud of the growth we have seen as an institution, as well as the strong culture we have built as a team. Our team members are at the forefront of our medical center each and every day, and team member engagement is always a top priority for our team. I’m proud to announce that our team member engagement rose to the top quarter percentile nationally making us a U.S. health care leader in engagement.

It has been my pleasure to be a part of the growth of Pascack Valley Medical Center and all that we have accomplished over the last year, and I look forward to our work ahead in 2017.

Emily Holliman
Chief Executive Officer
Hackensack Meridian Health Pascack Valley Medical Center

Emergency Department Opening

In October, Pascack Valley Medical Center officially opened its long-awaited Emergency Department (ED) to the community. The new ED was a $14-million project that relocated the department to the front of the hospital, nearly doubling the space from the old ED. The new ED additionally includes dedicated X-ray and CAT scan units, three nursing stations with quick access to medication/equipment rooms, and an immediate bedding policy – where patients are moved, whenever possible, from the ED entrance directly to beds. Triage is done at the bedside rather than at a triage desk or station.

The ED expansion and upgrade prepares Pascack Valley Medical Center to grow confidently into the future and stands as a concrete symbol of its commitment to clinicians, staff, and people living in or visiting the area. While no one looks forward to visiting a hospital Emergency Department, people in the communities surrounding Pascack Valley Medical Center can be assured that their local hospital is on the forefront of emergency care.

Leadership Team

Emily Holliman, MBA
Chief Executive Officer

Jason Pritchard
Chief Financial Officer

Susan Giordano, RN, MBA, NEA-BC, FACHE
Chief Nursing Officer

Colleen Smorra
Assistant Administrator

Medical Staff Leadership

George Lin, M.D., FAASM
Physician Advisor

Edward Gold, M.D.
Medical Director of Ambulatory Services

Georges Ghacibeh, M.D.
Neurologist/Chief of Medical Staff

Mohammed Saeed, M.D.
Hospitalist/Secretary, Medical Executive Committee

Ira Esformes, M.D.
Department of Surgery Chair

Sheldon Eisenberg, M.D., FACC
Department of Cardiology Chair

Eric Nazziola
Medical Director of the Emergency Department

Sean Pierce, M.D.
Department of Radiology Chair

Nanjappa Ravi, M.D.
Department of Medicine Chair

Mark Schlesinger, M.D.
Department of Anesthesia Chair

Craig Wiener, M.D., FACOG
Department of Obstetrics & Pediatrics Chair

Diana Finkel, D.O.
Member of the Medical Executive Committee

Stuart Barr, M.D., FACC
Member of the Medical Executive Committee