About Cathy Stovell

Bermuda Hospitals Board Announces Road Traffic Accidents Statistics for January 2018

19 February 2018: Bermuda Hospitals Board road traffic accident statistics for January 2018 (ie 1-31 January) show the following:

115 victims required services of the Emergency Department

7 victims were admitted to the Acute Care Wing

2 victims were admitted to the Intensive Care Unit

2 victims 18 or younger were admitted to the hospital, and

1 victim was discharged to an overseas medical facility, following a road traffic accident.

19 February 2018 Home Page, News

Bermuda Hospitals Board welcomes Christmas baby 2017

Monday 25 December 2017: Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) welcomed Drue Trott as the Christmas baby at 12:25am. The daughter of Anthonea DeSilva and Rodney Trott of Devonshire,  Drue has two older brothers, one ten years old and the other five.

The couple said they did not know the sex of the baby beforehand hand so it was a complete surprise when she arrived.

“I was really hoping for a girl because we already have two boys and I felt a girl would give some balance in the family,” said Mr Trott. Ms DeSilva said she was happy to be through the six hours of labour and was quite surprised that Drue arrived on her Christmas Day due date. “It’s interesting that she was born at 12:25 on 12/25,” Ms DeSilva said.

Drue weighed 6lbs 14oz.

25 December 2017 Home Page, News

Hospital request those with respiratory infections not to visit patients

Friday 22 December 2017: Due to an increase in the number of people admitted to hospital with influenza, King Edward VII Memorial Hospital (KEMH) has restricted visitors to patients on Gordon Ward. Only immediate family of patients on that ward will be allowed access.

Additionally Bermuda Hospitals Board is requesting that members of the public with respiratory and flu-like symptoms not visit patients in the hospital. These symptoms may include sneezing, coughing, body aches or fever.

Hospital patients are more vulnerable to infection from flu and respiratory viruses.

KEMH has seen an increase in recent weeks of confirmed influenza cases in patients that were admitted to the Emergency Department and those that were already inpatients.

So far there have been several confirmed influenza cases – five adults and two children were diagnosed in the Emergency Department and admitted.  In addition, six inpatients with flu-like symptoms are currently Gordon Ward.  All patients with the flu are in isolation.

How can we protect ourselves from catching influenza? Take preventive actions to stop the spread of germs. The Center for Disease Control in Atlanta recommends the following:

  • A yearly flu vaccine as the first and most important step in protecting against flu viruses.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.
  • If you are sick with flu-like illness, you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone for 24 hours without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.)
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Frequent hand hygiene.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like the flu.
  • While there are many different flu viruses, a flu vaccine protects against the viruses that research suggests will be most common.
  • Everyone 6 months of age and older should get a flu vaccine every year.
  • It is most beneficial for people at high risk of serious flu complications that include: young children, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease and people 65 years and older.
  • Vaccination also is important for health care workers, and other people who live with or care for high risk people to keep from spreading flu to them.
  • Children younger than 6 months are at high risk of serious flu illness, but are too young to be vaccinated. People who care for infants should be vaccinated instead.


If you suspect you have the flu visit your family doctor.

22 December 2017 Home Page, News

Holiday hours at Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre and King Edward VII Memorial Hospital Emergency Department

Thursday 21 December 2017: The Bermuda Hospitals Board wishes the public a happy and safe holiday weekend. If urgent medical care is required the Emergency Department at King Edward VII memorial Hospital (KEMH) is open 24 hours a day. Additionally the Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre (UCC) in St David’s will be open from noon to midnight on Saturday and Sunday and from 4pm to midnight on Christmas Day – Monday 25 December and Boxing Day – Tuesday 26 December.

Please note that if your condition is serious, attendance at KEMH may still be necessary.

On New Year’s Eve, Sunday 31 December, opening hours will be from noon to midnight and 4pm to midnight on New Year’s Day Monday 1 January.

BHB also reminds the public that emergency physicians attend to patients in the order of the severity of their condition. The poster below details the expected wait times, but please note this is a general guideline.

If you need to contact the UCC call 298-7700. To contact KEMH Emergency Department call 239-2009.

21 December 2017 Home Page, News

Bermuda Hospitals Board wins at international WOW! Awards 2017

Thursday 7 December 2017: Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) is pleased to announce it has been voted Workplace of the Year by the international employee recognition programme The WOW! Awards. BHB’s Child and Adolescent Services placed second in the WOW! What a Team category.

BHB was shortlisted in the two categories from more than 20,000 nominations submitted to the independent customer service awards organisation The WOW! Awards. The WOW! Awards help manage BHB’s staff recognition programme, the RISE Awards.

At the annual WOW! Awards Gala held in London last month, BHB won 2017 Workplace of the Year, beating out fellow finalists City University of London, Help to Buy South West, Imperial College London and University of Gloucestershire. According to the nomination committee, BHB won for staff programmes that “recognise their employees as one of their greatest assets and strives to keep teams enthused and engaged”, and because BHB “has shown innovative ways of communicating and recognising their certificate winners and nominees”.

“This win is not only good for BHB, it’s good for Bermuda,” said BHB CEO Venetta Symonds. “Showing the world that we value our patients and our employees breeds confidence in the way we treat each other on the island and the way we do business here.

“Our staff members have demanding, stressful jobs – our community depends on them to safeguard their health and wellbeing. It’s up to us as employers to ensure our staff are taken care of in return and given the best chance to succeed in providing exceptional care.

“On behalf of the management and staff of BHB, we are proud of this achievement and the Workplace of the Year award.”

“Being on hand when they announced the winners was an incredible experience for me,” said BHB Rewards & Recognition Manager Dean Parris. “I was so proud to be representing BHB.

“There were 65 finalists at the awards ceremony. Listening to their stories and sharing the experience with more than 400 attendees was both inspiring and humbling.”

Child and Adolescent Services (CAS) narrowly missed out on the WOW! What a Team award, coming second to the UK’s Durham Constabulary. The CAS team was nominated for two RISE Awards following their highly successful implementation of the Teen Life Skills programme.

Four members of the CAS team attended the London event. Occupational therapist Moffatt Makomo, speaking for the team, said: “The recognition our team received at the awards ceremony was truly motivating for us. We’ll continue to do our best for Bermuda’s youth.”

While in the UK, the CAS team also had the opportunity to tour Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children.

Derek Williams, CEO of The WOW! Awards, said: “Bermuda Hospitals Board really impressed the judges with the focus that they have put on their employee engagement strategy.

“Allowing the employee voice to be heard throughout the organisation, creating employee wellness programmes and providing teams with new gym facilities are just some of the examples of keeping employee happiness at the heart of the organisation.

“It is truly inspiring to see such passion for employee wellbeing and a great desire to be an employer of choice. We are so proud to be working with them.”

BHB Chief Operating Officer R. Scott Pearman said: “The People Pillar is one of the four pillars of the BHB Strategic Plan 2016-2021, alongside Care, Performance and Community. Our Human Resources Department is driving a transformational agenda to improve employee engagement and satisfaction.

“Although we have not achieved compete transformation yet, it is inspiring to receive recognition, particularly international recognition, for our work to date. Being named 2017 Workplace of the Year by The WOW! Awards is an indicator we are on the right track for building employee engagement.”

The RISE Awards is BHB’s employee recognition programme. To nominate a BHB employee for providing exemplary service or to learn more about the programme, visit the BHB website at bdahospitaldev.wpengine.com and search ‘RISE Awards’ or click the link at the bottom of the homepage.

7 December 2017 Home Page, News

Diabetes Respiratory Endocrine and Metabolism (DREAM) team offer free health screenings

Friday 10 November 2017:

Residents can take advantage of free health screenings as Bermuda Hospitals Board celebrates Diabetes and Chronic Lung Disease Awareness Month. The Diabetes Respiratory Endocrine and Metabolism (DREAM) Centre provide diabetes, asthma and lung disease education and awareness. The accredited team comprises Asthma & Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Nurse Educator Debbie Barboza; Diabetes Nurse Educators Jane Hope, Verna Eugene and Tammoi Jarrett and Clinical Dietitians Letitia Rabain and Jessika Quigley. All programs at the DREAM Centre are accredited and covered by insurance.

The DREAM Centre team will give free health screenings for lung function, blood sugar and blood pressure at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital (KEMH), General Wing lobby on Wednesday 15 November from 11am-3pm.

“Anyone over 40 who smokes or has a history of smoking and who finds it difficult to breathe should come in and take the free lung function test.  If that is not possible contact asthma.centre@bhb.bm,” said BHB Asthma Educator Debbie Barboza. “Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a serious lung disease which over time makes it harder to breathe.”

“Bermuda has one of the highest rates of diabetes in the world. It is the leading cause of blindness and heart disease on the island,” said DREAM Centre Clinical Manager Jane Hope. “These side effects can be avoided with prevention, early detection and proper management of diabetes” she added. “At the DREAM Centre we want to help people to control their sugar levels.  Good education has been shown to be as effective at lowering blood sugar levels as many diabetes medications and regular monitoring and appropriate interventions help individuals to avoid the complications of diabetes.”

BHB CEO Venetta Symonds said: “We are pleased to be able to offer these free screenings to the public. As healthcare professionals we recognise the importance of early detection and prevention in chronic conditions such as diabetes, asthma and COPD. I encourage you to come in and meet our DREAM Centre professionals. They can help you on your wellness path.”

10 November 2017 Home Page, News

Bermuda Hospitals Board promotes healthy drinks options for its staff

19 October 2017: The Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) is taking the lead in helping its staff attain better health by cutting all drinks with high sugar content from its staff cafeterias.

BHB’s Hotel Services Department has been phasing out its beverage offerings that contain more than 15grams of sugar per serving.

“This policy change will result in the elimination of all sodas (except diet), all fruit and all energy drinks that contain high-fructose in excess of the 15 grams per serving limit we have instituted,” said BHB Chief Operating Officer Scott Pearman. “Waters and drinks that contain less than 15g sugar will remain in stock,” he added.

Mr Pearman noted that contrary to the national trend of lower health insurance premium increases, the health insurance premiums for BHB’s employee plan rose 18 percent this year. This increase was not due to inflationary policies by Government or insurance companies.

“The increase was a direct result of actual hospital and major medical claims by our staff exceeding the claims of peer populations by 30 percent,” he said. Chronic diseases were the primary driver of these claims.

BHB’s Dietary Department revealed that the top five beverages sold in staff cafeterias at King Edward Memorial Hospital (KEMH) and the Mid-Atlantic Wellness Institute (MWI) from 1 April 2016 until 30 September 2017 contained a total of 3,070,778 grams of sugar.

“At BHB we have consumed 3.16 tons of sugar or an average of 3.5 pounds of sugar per staff member over the past 18 months,” said Mr Pearman. “Although our cafeterias serve members of the public as well, the sugar consumption calculation includes only our top five brands so total consumption is actually understated,” he added.

Most of the offending drinks are no longer available in the hospitals’ cafeterias. “By November first we will not have any overly sugary beverages available in our KEMH staff cafeteria or vending machines,” said BHB Director of Hotel Service Jerome Swainson. “By Christmas the same will be true at the Mid-Atlantic Wellness Institute,” he added.

“Research shows that chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, diabetes and hypertension can be significantly reduced by lifestyle choices,” said BHB Endocrinologist Dr Annabel Fountain. “Through this policy, BHB is creating an environment that supports and promotes healthier choices which will reduce the risk of developing these conditions,” she added.

“Staff are rightfully disgruntled when health insurance premiums increase substantially like they did last year, but the rise was driven by expenditures for chronic disease related to our care,” said Mr Pearman. “Removing beverages with greater than 15 grams of sugar will increase staff awareness of the dangers related to high sugar diets. It will also make it easier for us to make better choices. It’s our hope this will result in a healthier workforce and keep health insurance rates at reasonable levels,” he added.

Mr Pearman continued: “Our cafeterias are convenient and popular dining destinations for many of our 1750 staff. Most importantly we believe that eliminating unhealthy options will help us on the road to better health and wellness.”

Debbie Jones, Chairman Bermuda Diabetes Association has endorsed the move taken at BHB. She said: “The hospital is taking the first step in helping to make BHB employees healthy. By ensuring that sugary drinks contain no more than 15grams is supporting the message that people should be choosing water first. Water contains no grams of sugar. Hopefully every employer in Bermuda will follow the hospital’s lead.”

Minister of Health the Hon. Kim Wilson JP MP also threw her support behind BHB’s efforts. She said: “I have long been concerned about the high sugar content in what we consume.  The Throne Speech committed to Government leading the way in wellness by encouraging its employees to make healthy choices. BHB employees see far more clearly than the rest of us the negative health outcomes from obesity and diabetes so I’m delighted that our largest healthcare provider is leading by example. We, in Government, have promoted water only practices and policies in schools through the Healthy Schools Programme, and we are looking to re-introduce the Vending Machine Policy for Government premises, in order to improve healthy options. I urge others to choose water as the first option. A concerted effort by the whole community to reduce our population’s intake of sugar will not only make us healthier, it will also reduce the cost of healthcare premiums.”

19 October 2017 Home Page, News

KEMH Mammography Department puts breast health first

18 October 2017: BHB today announces a special breast health awareness day on Tuesday 24 October 2017 at the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital Mammography Department.  The goal is to help women over 40 who have not had their mammogram this year with a special walk-in service from 8am to 11am, and and open house from noon to 2pm so women who haven’t had their first mammogram yet can come in and meet the team, ask questions and see the equipment over refreshments.

Senior Imaging Technologist of Mammography, Terricca Smith, comments: “We know that many women fear their mammogram will be painful, and just having the test can result in anxiety that something will be found.  As it is breast health awareness month, on Tuesday 24 October we wanted to give women the chance to ask our mammography technologist questions and see the equipment at an open house between noon and 2pm. This is especially for women who might be close to having their first mammogram and have concerns or questions, but any woman is welcome if they want to come and see the service we offer at the hospital.”

Mrs Smith adds: “We also know that women 40 and over are extremely busy with careers and home responsibilities. It is easy to forget to make that mammogram appointment, so we are having a special walk in mammography service on the same day from 8am to 11am. Women 40 or over who have had not had a mammogram in the last year can walk in and get their test. Your breast health is our concern and, as early detection saves lives, we want to help make women as comfortable as possible about their mammogram. ”

Mammography Facts:

  • According to the Bermuda Tumour Registry Annual Report 2016:
    • Breast cancer was the most registered cancer in Bermuda in 2015 irrespective of gender (62) followed by prostate cancer (56) (p7)
    • For women in Bermuda, breast cancer had the highest number of registered cancers (62), followed by cervix uteri cancers (26) and colorectal cancers (10) (p8)
    • 1 in 5 (20.9%) of breast cancers occurred in women aged 40 to 49 in Bermuda in 2015 (p8)
  • According to the Bermuda Tumour Registry Annual Report 2015:
    • 72.4% of registered breast cancers in Bermuda were diagnosed as in situ or stage 1 (p13)
    • According to the American Cancer Society, the survival statistics by stage are:
    •      Stage  5-year Relative Survival Rate
                0 100%
                 1 100%
                 2 93%
                 3 72%
                4 22%
18 October 2017 Home Page, News

Bermuda Hospitals Board Traffic Advisory

16 October 2017: In order to install a new well pump Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) Engineering Services will be re-routing traffic on the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital campus on Wednesday 18 October. Starting at midnight on Tuesday 17 October there will be no through traffic from the Berry Hill Road entrance to the General Wing main entrance and Point Finger Road.

Vehicular traffic will be able to access the General Wing main entrance for drop off and pick up via the Point Finger Road entrance. These vehicles will be routed back to Point Finger Road to exit.

Pedestrian traffic will not be impacted by the work but bike parking will be reduced as several bays will be cordoned off.

The work is slated to start at 7am and be completed by 1pm. BHB apologises to the motoring public for any inconvenience the re-routing may cause.

16 October 2017 Home Page, News

Hospitals Auxiliary of Bermuda donates new ambulances worth almost $200,000 to Bermuda Hospitals Board

Monday 9 October 2017: The Hospitals Auxiliary of Bermuda (HAB) has donated two new ambulances costing $197,600 to the Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB).  This brings the total number of BHB ambulances to 7.

The two new vehicles are slightly larger than BHB’s previous models. They are both Ford Transit type 2 ambulances and were made in the US. While all the features of the BHB ambulances currently in use have been retained, they have been configured differently in the new vehicles. The new vehicles have a larger working area in the patient cabin section.

BHB Chief EMT Walter Brangman demonstrates the new call button feature in the new ambulances

New features include an electronic oxygen monitoring system, temperature controlled patient cabin and a call button system in the cabin to communicate with the driver. Responding to public feedback that it is often difficult to hear the sirens, the speakers on the new ambulances have been placed on the exterior.

“We have needed new ambulances for some time and are grateful to the HAB for this generous gift,” said BHB CEO Venetta Symonds. “I applaud their efforts on behalf of BHB and also on behalf of the entire Bermuda community.  I acknowledge too that the HAB donated the two ambulances we received in 2014. Every year they support us by agreeing to fund much needed equipment and providing volunteers.”

“The HAB is proud to be able to serve our community by providing funding for lifesaving equipment for our only hospitals,” said HAB President Sharon Vesey. “We recognise that demand is increasing for ambulance service and appreciate the challenges of maintaining these vehicles that are on our roads all day, every day.”

The HAB raises funds for BHB through their three business enterprises, The Barn, The Pink Cafe and The Gift Shop.  They also receive donations and annual membership dues from their members.  HAB volunteers work throughout many areas in the hospital, including information desk, CCU, hospitality cart, lending library, assisting patients with their menu selections on the wards, Fracture Clinic, Pharmacy and chapel services, as well as assisting overseas patients and their families.

In addition to their adult volunteers, there are also 99 junior members of the HAB, known as candy stripers.  These students enter the programme at age 14 and commit to a minimum of two years, with the majority remaining in the programme for four years.  These students are trained in all areas that the adults work in, as well as additional areas in the hospital such as Dialysis, Lab, Gosling, Maternity, Environmental Services, Surgical Admin, Laundry, ICU and Sterile Processing.  The students work every school holiday and give the adults a welcome relief.  On average 36,500 hours of service are donated to the hospital every year by HAB adult and junior members.

9 October 2017 Home Page, News