About Anna Nowak

Donate blood up to 30 June and have a chance to win a prize!

Wednesday 8 June 2022: Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) and Bermuda Blood Donor Centre today thank the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club for donating two prizes to recognise the blood and apheresis donors in Bermuda. This is the second year running Hamilton Princess has offered the prizes, which are a stay at the hotel and a champagne brunch. The winners will be drawn from Bermuda’s most active and new blood donors who have donated over the last year up to 30 June 2022.

Alongside the prizes, Hamilton Princess is sponsoring an online advertisement to encourage blood donation, and is encouraging and supporting its employees to donate blood by participating in the annual Corporate Blood Drive Competition. The corporate winner will be announced on World Blood Donor Day, Tuesday 14 June.

Dr Eyitayo Fakunle, consultant haematologist at BHB, comments: “Thank you, Hamilton Princess, for being a partner in our drive to increase the number of blood and apheresis donors in Bermuda. Behind this generous donation and support is the goal of increasing donors. The need for blood transfusions in Bermuda is increasing. There were nearly 2,000 transfusions in 2021 compared to 1,590 in 2017, an increase of 26%. Blood donors over the same period have only increased from 1,002 to 1081, or 8%. This means our existing donors are being true heroes and donating frequently. We hope people will see the great good they can do by joining our donors and helping us save lives.

“The increasing need for transfusions is not down to any one reason. We see people who have internal bleeding due to illness, trauma, surgery or childbirth, as well as sickle cell patients who may need therapeutic transfusions throughout their lives. We need each new generation to join so we can keep saving lives in Bermuda for years and decades ahead.”

Tim Morrison, General Manager of the Hamilton Princess, comments: “Hamilton Princess & Beach Club is proud to be able to do its part to thank the blood donors in Bermuda and encourage more people to donate. Providing raffle prizes for donors and also being a participant in the Corporate Blood Drive Competition are ways we can make a difference to our community. If anyone is thinking of donating for the first time, or returning to donating, then this month is a great time to start as you’ll be included in this year’s draw. Our goal, however, is to thank all Bermuda’s blood donors, who are helping to save lives year round.”

Bermuda Blood Donor Centre Nurse Phlebotomist Lucy Correia adds: “We are so pleased all our active donors can participate in this draw. We can promise anyone who is considering donating for the first time that we will make it as comfortable and easy for you as possible. The process only takes about 30 minutes and your one gift of blood can help up to three people. We are based on the first floor of the General Wing of the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital and are open Monday to Thursday 8:30am to 2:30pm and Friday 8:30am to 1pm for appointments. Call 236-5067. You can also go to bermudahospitals.bm for more information about donating.”

8 June 2022 Home Page, News

Lamb Foggo UCC returns to normal weekday hours

Sunday 1 May 2022: Bermuda Hospitals Board today announces that from Monday 2 May, the Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre (UCC) will be returning to its normal Monday to Friday hours of 2pm to 10pm, following the implementation of temporary hours on weekdays due to staff pressures.

Weekend hours were not changed, and still remain at 9am to 9pm.

X-ray services at the UCC will restart later this month, and an update will be provided in due course.

The Integrated Care Clinic at the UCC will continue on its normal hours.

1 May 2022 Home Page, News

KEMH Acute Care Wing traffic diversion from 18-22 April 2022

Sunday 17 April 2022: Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) advises the public that there will be traffic diversions for those driving to the front of the Acute Care Wing, including the Emergency Department entrance. The diversions will be in place from Monday 18 to Friday 22 April 2022.

Cleaning of the outside of the hospital building necessitates use of a lift that will block the road on the campus in the vicinity of the front of the building.

Pedestrians and vehicular traffic will be redirected where necessary. For your safety and the safety of others, please use caution and adhere to the barriers, signage and directions given by staff at the scene.

BHB apologises to the public for any inconvenience caused by the disruption.

14 April 2022 Home Page, News

No through road traffic at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital on Friday 8 April 2022

Thursday 7 April 2022: Bermuda Hospitals Board advises the public that there will be no through traffic on the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital (KEMH) campus between Point Finger and Berry Hill Roads on Friday 8 April 2022.

Cleaning of the outside of the hospital building necessitates use of a lift that will block the road on the campus near the Botanical Gardens.

Pedestrians will not be affected.

Emergency vehicles and people attending the Emergency Department should use the Point Finger Road entrance. Ambulances will enter and exit on Point Finger Road.  Visitor parking lots will still be accessible from both Point Finger Road (Acute Care Wing) and Berry Hill Road (General Wing and Agape House). Traffic will not be able to travel between the General Wing lobby roundabout and Point Finger Road.

For your safety and the safety of others, please use caution and adhere to the barriers, signage and Point directions of the security officers.

Bermuda Hospitals Board apologises to the public for any inconvenience caused by the disruption.

7 April 2022 Home Page, News

BHB statement on financial management, audits and Government guarantee

Thursday 17 March 2022: On behalf of Bermuda Hospitals Board, we are providing clarity on issues relating to:

1.            BHB financial management,
2.            the filing of the BHB financial audits and,
3.            the reporting of Government Guarantees in the Budget Book.

BHB financial management:

BHB’s finances moved to a very small surplus in 2020-21 for the first time since the $25 million budget cut imposed in 2017, and this year BHB hopes to break even.

This improvement has been possible due to the hard work of staff and leadership to save costs even through the pandemic. Government has supported us by meeting its budget commitments and providing smaller grants to support MWI improvements and the implementation of the electronic medical record. We are also deeply grateful for the assistance from donors who helped us manage personal protective equipment costs, the purchase of an oxygenator and cover costs associated with running the vaccination clinic. It has truly been a community effort to bring us to where we are today, even with the challenges we are experiencing.

We remain concerned about improving our cash levels, but these too have improved very slightly at the beginning of this year. This has been helped by a savings programme that has delivered about $20 million savings in this year alone. There is a long way to go and financial stability remains a key focus of the Board. This has not, however, prevented us continuing to prudently invest in improvements in this fiscal year.

We are extremely grateful to our staff who have managed a pandemic, financial pressures, and continued to modernise and improve the quality of our services and care, which is at the heart of what we do each day. Improvements include a new five-year strategy and completing the first year of implementing an electronic medical record, which will transform how we deliver care and also provide major improvements to patient care. We have just gone through a certification process as a primary stroke centre in a year when we launched a tele-stroke programme with Johns Hopkins, and we achieved stroke care standards that are equivalent to some of the best hospitals in the US. We have also continued integrating our model of care to bring care closer to people in the community and hopefully support a healthier community where chronic illnesses are better managed and controlled, even for people who do not have insurance or are under-insured.

Filing of the BHB financial audits:

It is reassuring that audited financials up to 2019 have shown us to be in good standing, with unqualified audits. The 2015-16 audits in the annual report are due to be tabled in the House shortly, followed by subsequent reports in the following months.

The reporting of Government Guarantees in the Budget Book:

The Government guarantee for the PPP contract is a Government-owned responsibility and changes have no relation to financial management of the hospital.

BHB’s responsibility is the payment of the contract, which it has managed over the last seven years. The contract covers the building, maintenance and lifecycle costs.

The guarantee in the budget remains an estimate as the hospital has not defaulted and is currently not at risk of defaulting on its payments. Despite the many financial challenges we have as hospitals and as a country, BHB has and expects to continue to meet its obligations of the PPP contract.

17 March 2022 News

BHB and Brown Darrell collaborate on CT service

Thursday 27 January 2022: Bermuda Hospitals Board today announced that it will be working with the Brown-Darrell Clinic to deliver a CT service while both its CT scanners undergo repairs.

Dr Daniel Stovell, Chief of Radiology, comments: “Many times patients who are scanned using a CT, such as stroke patients, can use alternative modalities, such as MRI. For patients whose only option is a CT scan, we are very grateful to the collaboration with the Brown-Darrell Clinic who will carry out the CT scan for us. If patients who attend Emergency require a CT, they will be transported by ambulance to Brown-Darrell, then return to KEMH where diagnosis and treatment will resume.

“We apologise for anyone who is impacted. It is very unfortunate that both CT scanners have been impacted at the same time and we are working closely with the manufacturer, GE. The parts will be on island this week and we expect the service to resume by next week.”

27 January 2022 Home Page, News

UCC temporary changes to evening hours only on week days

Wednesday 12 January 2022: Bermuda Hospitals Board today announces that there will be evening-only hours from 6pm to 10pm Monday to Friday at the Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre (UCC) from Thursday 13 January, to assist with ensuring adequate staffing levels are available in the Emergency Department at KEMH. The weekend hours will remain the same from 9am to 9pm.

Dr Chikezie Dean Okereke, Chief of Emergency, comments: “The temporary change in the weekday hours are due to a number of factors, including staffing issues, with some existing vacant positions and COVID-19 quarantine absences. We are extremely busy in the main Emergency Department at the moment. We are seeing many very unwell patients who need admission. This is not primarily driven by COVID-19 infections, but pre-existing medical conditions.

“We are struggling to get patients discharged in a timely manner from inpatient units, as they need community services, nursing home placements or family support. This has resulted in an increasing number of people waiting in the Emergency Department following admission, delays in timely assessment and management of the new patients attending and a high overall number of patients in the ED needing care. We are managing, but the reduced staffing numbers and the high acuity patients attending means that the Emergency Department service delivery is under a lot of pressure.”

Judy Richardson, Chief of Nursing, comments: “As community infections rise, so does the number of BHB staff who are impacted. BHB currently has nearly 150 staff off work due to positive results or as close contacts. While generally we have maintained services to date, the reduced UCC hours allow us to redeploy a full time nurse back to the ED which will assist in delivering care where the most unwell people are in need. We continue to review our situation as more people are impacted by positive cases. While hospitalised COVID patient numbers have been relatively low with omicron, they are rising, and with staff levels under pressure we may have to review the delivery of care in non-urgent outpatient areas should the situation continue to escalate.”

12 January 2022 Home Page, News

BHB updates community on Electronic Medical Record Programme

Wednesday 29 December 2021: BHB today updates the community on its Electronic Medical Record Programme, which aims to replace an old, outdated clinical system that is no longer supported by the company, with the Cerner Millennium electronic medical record (EMR).

The project officially kicked off in April this year, after a year-long delay due to the COVID-19 pandemic. First announced in the budget debate speech given by the Minister in March 2020, the integrated EMR at BHB will give each patient one record, no matter which BHB service they use, helping reduce duplication, delays and improve coordination of care, and access to full information for the patient and clinical team. It has the potential to have greater connectivity outside of the hospital.

Throughout 2021, about 350 staff members have been involved in the project in over 1,000 EMR workshops and meetings.

Michael Richmond, CEO & President, comments: “BHB staff and physicians have been working hard since April 2021 in order to implement our first integrated EMR. We appreciate that they have been keeping this project moving even as we have gone through the waves of the pandemic. The pressure of time is on us as our current clinical system, also from Cerner, is old and no longer supported. Implementing a full EMR as the solution will help us upgrade, and meet the standards of care expected in hospitals around the world. EMRs are a tool for staff to use in the delivery of care that puts the patient at the heart of all we do, it helps us in our mission to deliver the highest quality and safest care each day.”

Chief of Staff Dr Wesley Miller is one of the co-executive sponsors of the project. He explains: “Clinicians will use the EMR to write up their notes, review test results, make diagnoses, make referrals, prescribe medications and communicate with other people in the care team, or to other departments involved in a patient’s care. One patient, one record, wherever you go in BHB.

“It actively encourages safe care because of the safety alerts built into the system, which help clinicians make timely decisions. Someone with clinical indicators that suggest sepsis or stroke, for instance, can be immediately flagged: these are conditions in which a fast therapeutic response is critical to the outcome of patients. Medication alerts can be flagged that stop errors in doses or contraindications with other medications the patient is on.”

Bill Shields, Chief Financial Officer, is the other co-executive sponsor of the project: “We are so grateful to all the people working on this project to date as they managed the EMR commitment and the pandemic. Next year, starting in the Spring, over 1,000 staff in departments across BHB and all physicians who work within the hospital will be involved with training and testing, so the hardest part of the implementation is still ahead of us.

“We are aware that this is a big investment and would note that while we must replace an old clinical system, the EMR will replace many of our other systems, helping us integrate records with other actions such as scheduling, referrals, prescribing, and testing. Whilst the core cost of the implementation is about $30 million, when we go live we will save many millions of dollars in costs over time associated with the purchasing, updating and maintenance of many separate systems. The contract payment terms are over ten years. Of even more importance, however, is how the EMR will support our frontline staff as they strive to deliver the best care possible, and help BHB in its pursuit of excellence through improvement, to make Bermuda proud.”

Following an internal competition, BHB’s integrated EMR is now named ‘PEARL’ (Patients Electronic & Administrative Records Log) and will be used in all clinical, support and administrative areas across KEMH, MWI and Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre after it goes live next year.

PEARL’s history
Cerner’s Millennium was selected as BHB’s EMR in an RFP back in May 2019, after a vendor search and selection process that started in late 2018. A full business case to implement an EMR to replace the old clinical suite and improve the delivery of care at BHB was approved by the Board in November 2019. After the initial planned start in 2020 was postponed due to the pandemic, the EMR programme at BHB launched in April 2021. PEARL is expected to go live in fall/winter of 2022, following a major testing and training schedule for all staff.

29 December 2021 Home Page, News

BHB moves to Disaster Alert Level 3

Friday 22 October 2021: Bermuda Hospitals Board today confirmed it has reduced its alert level from 4 to 3, in response to the reduction in COVID-19 patients needing critical, emergency and acute care services. This is a cautionary move, as there are still people in hospital with COVID-19, and one overflow ICU is still open. Visiting restrictions will remain in place for this alert level, as will the suspension in routine elective surgeries, but preparations are underway for a gradual relaxation if numbers continue to decline.

BHB CEO Dr Michael Richmond comments: “This has been a very difficult period for our staff. Much was asked, much was given and we have a deep appreciation for their efforts. We are all hoping for a period to gradually recuperate. I would, on behalf of all our staff, want to thank the many donors who sponsored meals for our staff. Not only did you help people under immense pressure, but you gave us a feeling of connection with our community, a sense of being supported, that helped us through an extremely challenging time. Thank you.

“While I know people want to visit their loved ones as soon as possible, or have their planned routine surgeries, we are moving cautiously at this alert level. Our staff are recovering, especially those who worked directly or in support of acute, emergency and critical care areas. We also have an overflow ICU open, which is usually a post-anaesthetic care unit for surgery. It feels very much like the period immediately after a major storm at BHB – there is some restoration needed, and we need to be sure that the worst is past before we return to more normal functions.

“Thank you again for your support and understanding.”

22 October 2021 Home Page, News

Last week to see MWI client art and photography at BSOA

Tuesday 12 October 2021: This year’s art and photography exhibit by clients of Mid-Atlantic Wellness Institute (MWI), called the MindFrame PhotoVoice Exhibit, will be open until Tuesday 19 October for viewing at the Bermuda Society of Arts in City Hall.

Jordan Fairn, Art Psychotherapist, who runs the art therapy sessions at MWI, says: “MWI clients were asked to submit art and photography on the theme of ‘Weathering the Storm’ and we have some wonderful and creative pieces. It’s unfortunate that this year our exhibit coincided with the worst COVID-19 surge Bermuda has experienced, so we couldn’t have the usual opening night. However, the theme of resilience, of managing through the tough times, is something that is perhaps even more meaningful after the last few weeks and even years, as we all take a closer look at our mental health and stamina throughout the pandemic. I hope people can visit the Bermuda Society of Arts before we close.”

As in previous years, the MindFrame PhotoVoice Exhibit gives clients of MWI a space in which to share their expressions, perspectives and experiences through a variety of different media. This year there is drawing, painting, collage, photography and sculpture. Works can be purchased, and the artists receive part of the profits.

“Every individual has a unique perspective on the world and the MindFrame PhotoVoice gives our clients a space in which to share their creativity and thoughts with the wider community,” Says Jordan. “It is a unique exhibition, and we hope people come by. The gallery is open 10am to 4pm weekdays and 10am to 2pm on Saturdays.”

 

12 October 2021 News