Deana Transue, 51, of Lakewood, enjoys the summer months spending time with friends at the beach, taking pictures and crabbing. Unfortunately, this past summer was different than she had planned. Just as Deana was about to receive her Bachelor of Science in nursing, she wound up in the Emergency Department at Ocean Medical Center with severe abdominal pains. A CT scan and ultrasound revealed a mass in her colon.
Deana visited Brian Wolfman, M.D., a gastroenterologist at Ocean, for further testing, including a colonoscopy and biopsy. She was diagnosed with stage 2 adenocarcinoma, a form of colorectal cancer. Needing surgery, Deana was referred to Thomas Lake, M.D., a board-certified, fellowship-trained colon and rectal surgeon with Ocean.
Dr. Lake specializes in robotic surgery and has years of experience performing complex traditional and advanced robotic procedures. Robotic surgery allows doctors to perform many types of intricate procedures with more precision, flexibility and control than is possible with conventional techniques. Initially used for obstetrics/gynecology and urology surgeries, robotic surgical expertise has expanded to include colorectal, thoracic and general surgery.
Ocean’s surgical team has performed more than 500 robotic surgeries to date and their successful patient outcomes demonstrate their high level of expertise in advanced robotic surgical techniques. They take a collaborative approach to patient care, working together with nurses and the medical staff to coordinate the best possible outcomes to ensure the process is seamless.
Dr. Lake performed a highly specialized complete robotic right hemicolectomy on Deana — removing part of her colon along with fat and lymph nodes. Using the da Vinci® Surgical System to perform a procedure called intracorporeal anastomosis, Dr. Lake created small incisions associated with traditional laparoscopic surgery, but with improved visualization and range of motion.
Deana’s surgery only required a small 4 cm incision, a two-day hospital stay and very minimal postoperative narcotics. Traditional surgery would have resulted in an incision of 15 to 17 cm, a longer hospital stay and additional recovery time. “Robotic surgery dramatically improves a patient’s surgical experience. There is so much less trauma to the patient” explained Dr. Lake.
Deana is very pleased with the results of her surgery. She experienced very little pain and has no dietary restrictions. She did not require any chemotherapy since none of the lymph nodes that were removed showed signs of cancer.
As she returns to normal daily activities, she attributes her great outcome to Dr. Lake’s expertise, the robotic surgery team and her positive attitude. “Being negative makes your recovery worse. You just do what you need to do and you will get through,” she explains.
Message from the President
Our success at Ocean Medical Center is a result of the combined commitment of team members, physicians and supporters that demonstrates to ourselves and the community that we are fully committed to providing the best possible health care experience.
Our shared success if often preceded by challenges. In 2017, we achieved record census and averaged greater than 80% occupancy. Our Patient Progression committee sprang into action and implemented a real time demand capacity model where they accurately predicted patient placement by up to 77%. They also improved operating turnaround times by 24% from the prior year. I am always amazed at the ways our team addresses current needs with viable salient solutions.
We pride ourselves on doing things innovatively and effectively. Perhaps the most visible example was the opening of the Southwest Pavilion, one of the most innovative medical surgical units in the nation that is uniquely designed to enhance the patient experience. Our Graduate Medical Education program received initial accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) for residency programs in family medicine and psychiatry. Our inaugural class of 14 residents will begin their residency journeys in July 2018. With these accredited residencies programs, Ocean will become a premier community teaching hospital in Ocean County.
As Ocean and Monmouth counties are among the hardest hit areas in the state for opioid and substance abuse, I could not have been more honored to host Senator Cory Booker’s (D-NJ) Roundtable with Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato, Mayor John Ducey, the DEA and health care professionals to discuss the opioid crisis. Our leadership at Hackensack Meridian Health is 100 percent committed to providing the necessary resources to confront this crisis head-on and to help patients recover and families heal.
As we continue to evolve and redefine health care, I cannot be more excited about the future of Ocean Medical Center and the vision established by Co-CEOs Bob Garrett, John Lloyd and our Board of Trustees. Over the next 12 months, we will collectively build culture and programs and identify new ways to continue Ocean’s path toward greatness.
Dean Q. Lin, MHA, MBA, FACHE, FCPP
Our winning team continues to earn accolades in excellence and quality. In addition to being ranked #8 by U.S. News & World Report as one of best regional hospitals in New Jersey and #17 in the N.J. Metro Area for the second consecutive year, Ocean Medical Center continues to exceed national benchmarks for patient safety.
Humanity in Health Care: Seeing the Person in the Patient
Humanity in health care rests on an awareness of patients as human beings first, patients second, by creating a culture of compassion focused on providing high-quality care and enhancing the patient experience.
Our focus on the human experience didn’t skip a beat with the Celebration of Life that honored cancer survivors in the community. These brave and passionate individuals shared their stories of triumph and survival with our physicians, team members and care givers during the commemoration of the one year anniversary of the state-of-the-art Cancer Care Center.
In addition to celebrating our new facilities and technology, Ocean continued to enhance the patient experience in the Emergency Department with the implementation of the ‘Coaching with Empathy and Human Connection’ training for team members that demonstrated an increase in patient satisfaction from 25% to 99% over an 11-month period. The program will be rolled out to the network in 2018.
On the Forefront of Innovation and Technology
As a leader in innovation, Ocean prides itself on doing things differently and effectively. With the successful completion of the patient engagement technology pilot called EMMI (Expectation Management and Medical Information), patients were empowered to actively manage their care. Results have proven a 33% reduction in care gaps for wellness visits, higher HCAHPS scores were achieved with 12% increase in an overall rating for the hospital and, there was a 20% improvement in care transitions.
Extraordinary capabilities in both technology and people enable Ocean to blaze trails in redefining health care and achieving best practices. As part of the HRO journey, a commitment to establishing a culture of safety at all levels was enhanced with the development of Nursing Morbidity and Mortality forums, a leading practice in hospitals across the country. Nurses were fully engaged in the ongoing forums by sharing lessons learned through the ‘voice of the nurse’ to encourage collaboration and seek solutions to safety issues.
Training the Physicians of Tomorrow
Significant progress was made to evolve into a premier community teaching hospital. Ocean Medical Center received initial approval from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) in family medicine and psychiatry, practice areas in which there are serious shortages of physicians in New Jersey and the nation.
Dean Q. Lin, MHA, MBA, FACHE, FCPP
Regional President, Hackensack Meridian Health
President, Ocean Medical Center
Vito Buccellato, MPA, LNHA
Chief Operating Officer
Ellen Angelo, DNP, MSN, RN, CCRN
Vice President & Chief Nursing Executive
Vincent J. Vivona, D.O., JD, FACP, FCLM, CHCQM
Chief Medical Officer
Cindy Lantz, RN, MPA
Vice President, Physician and Business Development
Marie Foley-Danecker, RN, MSN, CCRN, NE-BC
Senior Manager, Patient Care
Ken Souchek PT, DPT
Senior Manager, Operations
Corporate Director, Orthopedics/Rehabilitation
Medical Staff Leadership
Thomas R. Lake, M.D.
Walter A. Wynkoop, M.D.
Michael S. Rothberg, M.D.
Kenneth E. Kronhaus, M.D.