Bursting with Ride! The Oldest Hospital in Nevada Donates a Historic Heirloom to Recognize 160 Years of Healthcare and Emergency Medical Services in Northern Nevada
Recognized as one of the world’s leading breast cancer experts as a 2023 Legends in Cancer Honoree
Dr. Lee Schwartzberg, FACP, Section Chief of Medical Oncology at the William N. Pennington Cancer Institute at Renown, was honored as th
HealthyNV Project News
Study Shows Importance of Ensuring Participant and Provider Follow-up After a Genetic Screening Result
Released in partnership with the Desert Research Institute: New research from the Healthy Nevada Project® finds that a confirmed diagnosis does not always result in changes to patient care.
Presenting individuals with potentially life-al
Se Recomienda A Los Pacientes De Renown Que Los Acompane Una Persona De Apoyo A La Visita Medica O En La Estadia En El Hospital
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Critical - Vital signs are unstable or outside normal limits. There are major complications.
Note: "Stable" is not a condition.
Tummy Trouble? Renown Children’s Hospital Adds Another New Specialty, Pediatric Gastroenterology
Two pediatric gastroenterologists bring life-saving care to kids and make Renown their new home The Renown Children’s Hospital team and our community is celebrating the addition of a new life-saving pediatric specialty to its practice serving children and families in northern Nevada. Parents and guardians will now be able to seek professional pediatric gastroenterologist care with the addition of Drs. Juan Gregory and Kathleen Holland to Renown Medical Group. “Recognizing the importance of diagnosing and caring for children who have conditions that affect the organs in the digestive system, including the stomach, liver and bowel, while also helping children who have issues feeding and eating, is critically important to us at Renown,” said Kristina Deeter, MD, MBA, FAAP, Chair of Pediatrics, University of Nevada Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med) and Physician-in-Chief, Renown Children’s Hospital. “Both Drs. Gregory and Holland are superb clinicians, we are excited to have them join Renown Children’s Hospital to offer pediatric gastroenterology services, including a wide range of complex and vital procedures and screenings, endoscopies and colonoscopies.” Juan Carlos Gregory, MD, has 18 years of experience caring for children in northern Nevada. He is a clinical associate professor of pediatrics at UNR Med with a special interest in celiac disease, abdominal pain, and gastroesophageal reflux in children. Gregory earned his undergraduate degree at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX before completing his medical training, including a residency in pediatrics at the University of San Diego in Pediatrics and fellowships in Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition at both Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC, and at the National Institutes of Health, Digestive Disease Section in Bethesda, MD. He is board-certified in Pediatric Gastroenterology and speaks Spanish. Kathleen Holland, MD, MPH brings a global health perspective to her work caring for children. A graduate of the University of Nevada Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med) with her medical doctorate and her master’s in public health with a social and behavioral health emphasis, she has donated her skills to providing international medical relief for children in Uganda and Nicaragua. Holland earned her undergraduate degree at University of Nevada Reno in Biology, Health Ecology and Healthcare Ethics before completing her medical training and residency in Pediatrics and a fellowship in Pediatric Gastroenterology at Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis, IN. Her research and scientific interests include vaccination rates and family barriers among children with inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s and colitis, pediatric autoimmune pancreatitis, and cystic fibrosis. How Pediatric Gastroenterologists Help Children and Families The Pediatric Gastroenterology Program at Renown Children’s cares for children experiencing common GI-related problems of childhood; nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, reflux, colic, milk protein allergy, poor growth and feeding difficulties, and sees patients from infancy to 18 years old. “As specialists in the care of children with gastrointestinal and liver problems, we focus on the diagnosis and treatment of these issues,” said Larry Duncan, MD, Vice President of Pediatrics and Surgery & Administrator of Renown Children’s & Women’s Services. “Our physicians play an active role in teaching and research. We have several areas of expertise including prevention, diagnosis and treating disease of the digestive tract including the esophagus, gallbladder, stomach, pancreas, colon, small intestine and liver disease.” Special expertise includes: Pediatric feeding and growing disorders Aerodigestive disorders Food and hypersensitivity disorders Inflammatory bowel disease Celiac disease Liver diseases Children requiring parenteral and enteral nutrition Renown Children’s Hospital is the only dedicated children’s hospital in northern Nevada, offering programs and services for families from a 100,000 square mile area, from Sacramento, CA to Salt Lake City, Utah. Renown Children’s provides the area’s only Children’s Emergency Room, Pediatric ICU (PICU), children’s imaging center and the largest neonatal ICU (NICU), a level III intensive care unit. Specialty Children’s Care at Renown Today, over 90% of families in northern Nevada seek care from the experts at Renown Children’s Hospital. “We are so grateful to the William N. Pennington Foundation for its support in establishing the William N. Pennington Fund for Advance Pediatric Care in 2016, which allowed us to hire our first 15 pediatric specialists,” said Dr. Deeter. “Today we have over 40 pediatric physician specialists at Renown Children’s Hospital who provide care in adolescent medicine, pediatric endocrinology, pediatric hematology/oncology, pediatric pulmonology, pediatric neurology, pediatric nephrology, pediatric infectious diseases, pediatric ophthalmology, pediatric orthopedic surgery, pediatric cleft and craniofacial surgery, pediatric urology, pediatric dentistry, pediatric emergency medicine, and now, pediatric gastroenterology. Our clinicians provide 30,000 patient visits annually, offering an exceptional level of care. The Pennington gift is truly a gift that keeps giving to the families in our area.” Now Being Constructed: Expanded Inpatient Care at Renown Children’s Hospital New construction of an expanded Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) with increased capacity to 49 bassinets, an expanded Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) with increased capacity to 16 private patient and family rooms, and a new Renown Children's Hospital inpatient floor with increased capacity for 38 private patient and family rooms for a total capacity of 58 pediatric beds are currently being constructed on Tahoe Tower, Level 5 of Renown Regional Medical Center. It is expected that the new units will open to patients and families in April 2023. In the most recent US News & World Report Best Hospital rankings, Renown Regional Medical Center was named as the number one hospital in Nevada. No other hospitals in the state met their stringent standards for the 2021 rankings. Renown Health is High Performing, its highest rating possible, in eight procedures and conditions including Heart Failure, Colon Cancer Surgery and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Hip Replacement and Knee Replacement. A hospital's score is based on multiple data categories, including patient outcomes, safety, and volumes. Hospitals earning a High Performing rating were significantly better than the national average. Renown Medical Group is an in-network provider for Hometown Health and other health plans. Drs. Gregory and Holland are pleased to see new patients at their location at the Renown Children’s Subspecialty Clinic inside Renown Regional Medical Center at 75 Pringle Way, Suite 505, Reno, Nev. Ask your pediatrician for a referral to a medical specialist when further evaluation of a particular issue is necessary. About Renown Health Renown Health is Nevada’s largest, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving Nevada, Lake Tahoe, and northeast California. With a diverse workforce of more than 7,000 employees, Renown has fostered a longstanding culture of excellence, determination, and innovation. The organization comprises a trauma center, two acute care hospitals, a children’s hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, a medical group and urgent care network, and the locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown is currently enrolling participants in a community-based genetic population health study, the Healthy Nevada Project®. About UNR Med The University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med), Nevada’s first public medical school, is a community-based, research-intensive medical school with a statewide vision for a healthy Nevada. Since 1969, UNR Med has trained more than 3,900 students, residents, and fellows. UNR Med continues to improve the health and well-being of all Nevadans and their communities through excellence in student education, postgraduate training and clinical care, research with local, national and global impact and a culture of diversity and inclusion. For more information, visit med.unr.edu.
Read More About Tummy Trouble? Renown Children’s Hospital Adds Another New Specialty, Pediatric Gastroenterology
8 Financial & Wellness Benefits for Employees
Listening to what employees need most now and for the future; ensuring families are healthy, financially secure The Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate last week for the first time since March 2020. This will mean a higher cost of borrowing on credit cards, student and home loans, car financing and more. It could also mean more returns from savings accounts, depending on the institution. This news, coupled with concerns about mental health and physical well-being as caregivers come through the pandemic has presented leaders at Renown with a unique opportunity to reframe approaches to how to help their employees grow, feel financially supported and engage as part of a healthy and thriving team. After listening to concerns of employees and their leaders, Renown Health’s Human Resources department and leading industry partners have announced a number of additional benefits to promote ways to increase work/life balance; support rest-and-recuperation strategies, and new financial resources essential to sustaining happy, high-performing teams. Renown Health is hiring key roles to support the health and well-being of our community, and encouraging those with a passion for service to join the Renown family to Fight the Good Fight, by applying on line at careers.renown.org. Expanded and new employee benefits for 2022 include: 1. Expanded Physical Health, Medical and Dental Plan Benefits. The MOBE program, offered at no charge, offers each employee a personal Health Guide to support four core elements of health; diet, sleep, physical movement and emotional well-being to help build healthy habits, fuel a better life, provide energy and promote healing. This year, Renown expanded its Medical Plan coverage, adding new benefits, without increasing rates paid by employees. Renown offers health insurance benefits through Hometown Health, northern Nevada’s largest and only locally owned not-for-profit insurance company with wide-ranging medical coverage. Hometown Health offers access to the largest network and highest quality clinical services provided by 1,200 medical doctors and specialists in 150 sites of care, including those with Renown Medical Group; urgent care centers; lab and imaging services; and the state’s #1 Us News & World Report hospitals, Renown Regional Medical Center (2022) and Renown South Meadows Medical Center (2021). New medical benefits added this year include telehealth visits with a $0 copay; Renown Pharmacy prescriptions with no deductible; and if employees and their families need to travel out of the area for essential care, there is now a travel stipend offered for University Medical Center in Las Vegas or to University of Utah Health. The organization also reduced the cost for health insurance premiums paid by part-time employees (20-30 hours). In addition to improved health benefits, the dental network was expanded through MetLife Dental, with no increases in dental rate premiums paid by employees in 2022. As a non-profit organization, Renown is able to offer employees the ability to establish Flexible Spending Accounts as way to use tax-free dollars to pay medical expenses not covered by other health plans. 2. Enhanced Wellness and Mental Health support programs. Renown Health is home to the Stacie Mathewson Behavioral Health & Addictions Institute. As leaders, they are working to remove the stigma and barriers to using mental health services when needed; reinforcing that seeking help indicates strength, not weakness. This includes encouraging team members to take a day off to refresh and recharge or take advantage of confidential, mental health counseling visits at no charge. Renown updated their policy to include mental and emotional well-being as eligible for use of sick leave. Through the pandemic, to be sure employees had the time should needed, leadership added 80 hours of sick time to employee’s sick banks as well as $0 copay for Teladoc behavioral health sessions and nutrition services (virtual). Renown encourages physical fitness and inspires the health and well-being of employees by supporting participation in races (on foot or via bike) in their communities. Employee who race, run, walk, triathlon or bike may submit for reimbursement for an individual entry fee up to $100. 3. Appreciating and Engaging Employees. Many teams may now be working on-site, hybrid and remotely, which means getting together to make new memories is more complicated. Renown Health leaders continue to bring camaraderie and bonding into the workplace by investing in holding monthly Pride events for staff, hosting everything from online socials to game nights to help re-establish bonds. At Renown, employee engagement also takes the form of employee recognition programs. The Everyday Amazing program encourages employees to thank each other for outstanding service via an online platform, and earn certificates and points towards gift cards and prizes. Employee and organization-led leadership and career education programs are encouraged, as well as paid volunteer opportunities (four hours each quarter), and matches of up to $1000 for non-profit organization boards on which Renown Health employees serve. Renown offers events and yearbooks to help employees celebrate their history and accomplishments, as well as Celebrate Amazing, a special event to honor Service Milestones, Top Talent and Women of Achievement award winners. Renown supports the community and engages medical providers and employees to attend events with the Reno Aces, UNR football and basketball games, the Great Reno Balloon Race and hundreds of community events each year. 4. Living Debt Free with Financial Wellness Programs. A free financial wellbeing program from Salary Finance is available at no cost to employees, with a salary-linked loan product. This benefit enables employees to borrow or save money directly through their paycheck. Salary-linked loans allow employees to access affordable credit that they can easily repay through their salary, helping them pay down existing debt or avoid high-interest credit cards, overdraft fees, or payday loans. Salary Finance provides affordable borrowing options in times of need, as well as a financial education component, which helps employees understand their current level of financial content specific to their needs. Since launching, over 40% of employees have engaged with the Salary Finance offering, and over 500 have accessed affordable credit through Renown's custom-branded Salary Finance Financial Wellbeing Hub. “It has made a wonderful impact and has lessened my frequent stress regarding my debt," said a Renown employee enrolled in the program. In total, it is estimated that employees have saved nearly $275,000 on interest, and that number continues to grow as more employees take advantage of the benefit. The Greater Perks program from Greater Nevada Credit Union, the official credit union for Renown employees, offers a number of benefits including a $100 bonus for opening a new checking account, $25 when opening a new “I Can Save” account, $500 credit towards an appraisal for a home loan, low-cost rates on short-term personal loans and auto loans, and regular online financial wellness seminars. Membership with the credit union is not required to take advantage of Greater Nevada Mortgage’s offerings. In addition, donors have supported, through the Renown Health Foundation, funds for help employees who have suffered a personal financial catastrophe, and are in need for emergency funding to pay bills, with no repayment required. 5. Educational Assistance Reimbursement, Student Loan Repayment, Continuing Education for Learners. Renown values and encourages employees to continue their education and supports career aspirations and goals. The education assistance program offers loan reimbursement and repayment opportunities as well as educational and financial guidance from experts. College tuition, certification and certificate reimbursement is provided for employees who are currently enrolled in college/university or taking the extra steps to receive a professional certification or certificate. In addition, the organization supports employees who have previously completed their education and are now managing the burden of student loans. Employees also have the option to invest in a 529 college savings plan, an investment program designed to help people save for future education expenses for children/dependents at almost any private or public college or accredited higher education institution. 6. Onsite Childcare & Adult Care Assistance. Figuring out the childcare puzzle has been a hurdle for working parents through the pandemic. Renown is one of a select number of health systems that offer onsite childcare. Renown Health Child Care Center welcomes employees' children ages six weeks to six years (and not yet in kindergarten). The center is licensed for 176 children and features 11 classrooms: three infant classrooms, four toddler and four preschool classrooms. Staff help parents with resources to find care for their children onsite, or with licensed daycare providers in the community. Employees increasingly are caring for older adults in their families. As a non-profit organization, employees are able to contribute to tax-free savings FSA accounts that cover dependent care for children and older adults. 7. Flexible Schedules and Locations. Renown now provides the ability for medical providers and employees to work on-site, hybrid and remotely. This year as many employees working remotely moved out of state to be closer to friends or family, Renown kept pace, employing a Professional Employment Organization called Tri Net, in a co-employment model to assist with national benefits and tax administration. Renown is now able to recruit and retain remote employees from Maine to Minnesota and offer, for a wide range of positions in IT, finance and other support services, remote and flexible schedules that are attractive to many across the country. For clinicians, there are a large variety of positions now available at over 100 locations across the state. On March 7, Renown increased the cap of shift differential to 10% up to $6 an hour and added a weekend differential for staff for up to 5%. At Renown’s hospitals, there are employment positions available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to serve the community. Other providers and employees take advantage of a compressed workweek, 12-hour shifts and other options, which allow them the flexibility to live their best life at work and at home. 8. Renown’s Retirement Savings Plan. Retirement savings plans including a full 401(k) plan through Vanguard are available for employees to save for retirement. Employees can contribute from1-75% of pre-tax pay (up to annual IRS limit) and receive a matching contribution from Renown of 4% when you contribute 4% or more to a 401(k) plan. Rollovers of a former employer's 401(k), 403(b), 457 or other qualified plan can be made into a Vanguard plan at any time. In addition, in-service withdrawals are allowed at age 59 1/2 from 401(k), and a new Roth 401(k) option was added. Join the Renown team: Renown Health is now hiring key roles in our organization to support the health and well-being of our community. To join the Renown family to Fight the Good Fight, apply on line at careers.renown.org. About Renown Health Renown Health is the region’s largest, locally governed, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. With a diverse workforce of more than 7,000 employees, Renown has fostered a longstanding culture of excellence, determination and innovation. The organization comprises a trauma center, two acute care hospitals, a children’s hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, a medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest, locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown is currently enrolling participants in the world’s largest community-based genetic population health study, the Healthy Nevada Project®. For more information, visit renown.org.
Read More About 8 Financial & Wellness Benefits for Employees
Community Recognizes 2020 Northern Nevada Nurses of Achievement Winners
Renown Health nurses are being celebrated for going above and beyond for their patients and care team colleagues. Every year, the Northern Nevada Nurses of Achievement Committee recognizes registered nurses (RNs) from across the community to celebrate their accomplishments and further the nursing profession. The committee just announced the 2020 award winners, including seven high-performing nurses from Renown Health. Nurses are at the forefront of the care teams working through the COVID-19 pandemic and 2020 has been fittingly declared the “International Year of the Nurse and Midwife” by the World Health Organization. Celebrating our nurses is more important this year than ever, and Renown is proud to be home to seven of the 2020 Northern Nevada Nurses of Achievement winners in the following categories: Clinical Leadership: Jenny Garcia, RN, BSN, supervisor of nursing in the orthopedics unit at Renown Regional Medical Center; Critical Care: Olivia Cartwright, RN, BSN, bedside nurse in the intensive care unit at Renown Regional Medical Center; Lifetime Achievement: Cheryl Jameson, RN, bedside nurse in the general surgical unit at Renown South Meadows Medical Center; Office & Outpatient: Kathleen Neilan, RN, BCN, OCN, cancer nurse navigator at Renown Institute for Cancer; Oncology and Infusion Services: Paola Espinoza, RN, BSN, supervisor of nursing in the cancer nursing unit at Renown Regional Medical Center; Rookie of the Year: Tamara Slater, RN, BSN, bedside nurse in the general surgical unit at Renown Regional Medical Center;Renown Facility Winner: Chelsea Zielinski, RN, MSN, clinical nurse educator in the neonatal intensive care unit at Renown Regional Medical Center. From a pool of over 400 publicly-nominated nurses who provide care across northern Nevada’s care facilities and hospitals, the Committee announced a total of 14 award winners during a virtual awards celebration on Friday, Aug. 28. Anthony D. Slonim, RN, MD, DrPH, FACHE; President and CEO of Renown, who worked as a registered nurse in an Emergency Department earlier in his career says, “We appreciate the work that every nurse does every day, not only for the patient in the hospital, but in all of the other settings where people come to learn how to live healthier lives. Nurses have direct influence on the outcomes of every patient, and I congratulate all 14 nurses for their exceptional achievements.” He adds, “The real winners are those patients, families, colleagues and community members who are cared for by these exceptional nursing professionals.” “We’re proud to celebrate our community’s nurses and all they do to care for patients and their loved ones,” said Jana Elliott, Associate Chief Nursing Officer, Acute Care Services. “Nursing is a true calling to serve others and there are so many incredible ways nurses go beyond their duty to provide the best care despite the intense nature of the pandemic.” “Nurses are at the core of our care teams; they provide compassionate care and advocate for patients and their loved ones in a time of need,” said Melodie Osborn, Chief Nursing Officer, Health Services. “The Northern Nevada Nurses of Achievement awards are a longstanding way of honoring our community’s most compassionate nurses.” Interview Opportunities A 2020 Nurses of Achievement winner and a representative from Renown’s nursing leadership are happy to speak on this prestigious honor, as well as what it means to be a nurse during these unprecedented times. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 775-691-7308 to schedule an interview. About Renown Health Renown Health is the region’s largest, locally owned and governed, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. With a diverse workforce of more than 7,000 employees, Renown has fostered a longstanding culture of excellence, determination and innovation. The organization comprises a trauma center, two acute care hospitals, a children’s hospital, a rehabilitation hospital, a medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest, locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown’s institute model addresses social determinants of health and includes: Child Health, Behavioral Health & Addiction, Healthy Aging and Health Innovation. Clinical institutes include: Cancer, Heart and Vascular Heath, Neurosciences and Robotic Surgery. Renown is currently enrolling participants in the world’s largest community-based genetic population health study, the Healthy Nevada Project®. For more information, visit renown.org. About Northern Nevada Nurses of Achievement Shining a spotlight on the nursing profession since 1999, the Northern Nevada Nurses of Achievement Committee works to honor their colleagues and to increase awareness of nursing as a profession. The committee also supports the growth of the profession in awarding scholarships for nursing students.
Read More About Community Recognizes 2020 Northern Nevada Nurses of Achievement Winners
Elementary Schoolers: Take Part in Free Virtual Vision Screening
Renown Children’s Hospital pediatric ophthalmologist Dr. Mitchell Strominger hosts state-wide virtual event to provide routine vison screenings for children and Walk with a Doc. Renown Children’s Hospital pediatric ophthalmologist Dr. Mitchell Strominger is set to host a virtual Walk with a Doc event on Sunday, June 14 at 10 a.m. for elementary school children and their parents. During this free event, Dr. Strominger will give a brief, kid-friendly talk about the importance of routine vision screenings and show parents how to conduct a vision screening with their kids at home. He will close out the morning session with a live Q&A. Following the event, families are encouraged to get outside and enjoy a walk in the great outdoors. The event is sponsored by Renown Children’s Hospital and free to participants, however you must register to receive the link to attend. “Vision is important for learning, experiencing new things and interacting with others, which is why it’s critical for children to get vision screenings early and routinely,” said Dr. Strominger. “The best time to screen a child’s vision is kindergarten through third grade as the cells in the brain responsible for vision are continuously developing up until age eight. If we detect vision problems early, we here at Renown Children’s Hospital have the expertise and technology to correct these vision problems and enable children to live healthy, productive lives.” Individuals who register for this event will be emailed a vision-screening sheet to help facilitate an at-home screening, as well as a form to send back to their child’s pediatrician or pediatric ophthalmologist upon completion to determine the best course of action. Dr. Strominger added, “Many parents and schools have put off vision screenings due to COVID- 19 school closings, hesitations of safely leaving their homes or potential financial costs. I am pleased to host this virtual event on behalf of Renown Children’s Hospital, to engage kids and parents in a conversation on the importance of vision and to remind the community that we are here to help and provide the care they need, both in-person and virtually—be it over a smart phone, tablet or computer screen.” This virtual event will take place in the newly renovated Fianna’s Healing Garden which re-opens later this month and has been funded 100% by donations through the Renown Health Foundation. Located in the heart of Renown Regional Medical Center, the healing garden serves as place to enjoy the serenity and beauty of the outdoors. Dr. Strominger is one of 26 pediatric subspecialists recruited to Renown Children’s Hospital since 2016, thanks to the Pennington Foundation's $7.5 million donation made to the non-profit Renown Health Foundation to expand children’s health services. June marks the four-year anniversary of the Nevada Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ (Nevada APP) participation in the national Walk with A Doc event. Dr. Strominger is the secretary and treasurer for the Nevada AAP. From pediatric specialties, 24/7 ER care and surgery, to imaging, pediatric ICU and child life specialists, Renown Children’s Hospital is dedicated to helping kids feel welcome, safe and well cared for. Through each visit, parents can expect the highest level of care for their child’s health and well-being from birth and beyond. To support Renown Children’s Hospital and help local children in need get access to vital health services like routine vision screenings, please visit the Renown Health Foundation. About Renown Health Renown Health is a locally governed and locally owned, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is one of the region’s largest private employers with a workforce of more than 7,000. It comprises three acute care hospitals, Renown Children’s Hospital, Renown Rehabilitation Hospital, the area’s most comprehensive medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest and only locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown has a long tradition and commitment to continually improve the care and the health of our community. For more information, visit renown.org.
Read More About Elementary Schoolers: Take Part in Free Virtual Vision Screening
Seeking Donors Who Have Recovered from COVID-19 to Donate Plasma
New study, led by physician researchers from Renown Health and University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine seeks to understand how the immune system responds to COVID-19 with goal of developing a new treatment. Individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 may now be able to help patients currently fighting the infection by donating their plasma. Those who have recovered from the infection may have COVID-19 antibodies in their blood. These antibodies provided one way for their immune systems to fight the virus when they were sick, so their blood may be used to help others fight off the disease through convalescent plasma. Convalescent plasma is a component of blood from recovered patients that may contain precious COVID-19 antibodies. Antibodies are proteins that might help fight the infection. In this study, we will be collecting plasma from patients who have recovered from COVID-19 and investigating its efficacy in helping treat other patients with COVID-19. Convalescent plasma is being investigated for treatment of COVID-19 because there is no approved treatment for the disease and there is information that suggests it might help some patients recover from COVID-19. Renown Health and the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med) are leading a study locally to better understand how the body’s immune system responds to the virus, how it presents in northern Nevada and ultimately, aid in developing a new treatment for COVID-19. “Renown and UNR Med are at the forefront of conducting essential research to increase the health and safety of our community,” said Sara Healy, MD, MPH, principal investigator of the study and a pediatric infectious disease physician at Renown Children’s Hospital and UNR Med. “So little is known about effectively treating COVID-19 and we are venturing into new territory. This important study is instrumental in helping us understand the immune systems of people who were affected by COVID-19, and with their help, getting us one step closer to finding a treatment for the disease that has significantly impacted our nation and our community.” “COVID-19 survivors are in a unique and exciting position to be a part of something much bigger than the virus,” said Mark Riddle, MD, DrPH, FISTM, associate investigator of the study and Associate Dean for Clinical Research at UNR Med. “As a participant of this study, not only are you helping us to better understand the disease and the chronic health affects it has long term, but it’s a way to help those suffering from the disease to fight it and hopefully recover. We encourage participation in this important study and invaluable contributions to advancing medicine and our knowledge of COVID-19.” This community-wide study led by physician researchers from Renown Health and UNR Med is a collaborative effort with Vitalant, county and state health districts, Saint Mary’s Medical Center, Northern Nevada Medical Center, Carson Tahoe Health and the VA Sierra Nevada Health Care System, along with the many care providers in our area. People aged 18-60 in general good health who have fully recovered from COVID-19 for at least two weeks are encouraged to consider donating convalescent plasma as part of this study. There are 332 people, just in Washoe County (as of 5/1/20) who have recovered from COVID-19 and have immune systems that may now be producing antibodies to protect them from becoming infected again with coronavirus. Donated plasma is needed right now, for this clinical trial to determine definitively if this treatment works. Participating in this research study will also make it easier to donate plasma to the Mayo Clinic convalescent plasma program that Renown is a part of in hopes to find a treatment for COVID-19. There is no cost to participate in this study and participation is voluntary. An individual’s decision to participate will not affect their current or future relations with their health care provider(s), health district, or the community. Those who decide to participate are free to withdraw at any time. Confirmed COVID-19 patients who have recovered from the virus and are interested in participating in the study are invited to contact the project coordinators at the Renown Research Office at (775) 982-3646, or via e-mail at email@example.com, 7:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. About Renown Health Renown Health is a locally governed and locally owned, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is one of the region’s largest private employers with a workforce of more than 7,000. It comprises three acute care hospitals, a rehabilitation hospital, the area’s most comprehensive medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest and only locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown has a long tradition and commitment to continually improve the care and the health of our community. For more information, visit renown.org. About the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine The University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med), Nevada’s first medical school, is a community-based, research-intensive medical school with a statewide vision for a healthy Nevada. Established in 1969, UNR Med is improving the health and well-being of all Nevadans and their communities through excellence in student education, postgraduate training and clinical care, research with local, national and global impact and a culture of diversity and inclusion. For more information, visit med.unr.edu.
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Gratitude Takes Flight at Renown Health in Celebration of Nurses & Hospital Week
Renown’s general surgical unit debuts a set of angel wings crafted by staff and their families in Renown’s general surgical unit debuts a set of angel wings crafted by staff and their families in commemoration of Nurses & Hospital Week, May 4–10. A special piece of artwork in Renown Health’s general surgical unit is bringing color and joy to everyone who walks by. The unit’s new angel wings backdrop is made up of individually-decorated feathers – created by Renown nurses, certified nursing assistants, unit clerks, supervisors, staff’s family members and anyone else who wanted to contribute their creativity. Assembled in celebration of Renown’s Nurses & Hospital Week, observed May 4–10, this angelic backdrop sheds light on some of the things our nurses are most grateful for. “This art project was a month in the making,” said nurse manager of Renown’s general surgical unit, Deanna Olson. “A true collaborative effort, our staff, and even some of their children, would use their breaks and downtime to cut out and decorate feathers. Some focused on using bright, vibrant colors, while others wrote about what they are grateful for and the things that make them happy.” Doodles of pets, names of family members and inspirational quotes are just a few of the things featured on the feathers. The names of the 110 employees working in the unit can also be found throughout the angel wings. The idea behind the backdrop theme was inspired by nurse Melissa Vierra, who spent her last night as part of the general surgical unit working with a few team members to build the angel wings. Vierra now serves as a nursing administrative manager for Renown. “It takes an angel to be selfless enough to devote oneself to the care of others,” said Vierra. All our angels are as unique as the feathers in the wings, but together, we are united as a team to provide the best care possible for our patients. I am extremely grateful for my nursing family and all the lives they touch, including mine, every day.” A few Renown nurses joined Vierra in expressing their gratitude: “I am grateful that I have a job and for everything I have in my life.” – Elizabeth Rios, CNA “I am grateful for my family.” – Jena Smith, RN “I am grateful for my health.” – Mary Gutierrez, UC “I am grateful that I am not sick.” – Barby Workman, CNA “I am grateful for my life.” – Sierra Genz, RN “I am grateful for my health.” – Alyssa Daly, RN “I am grateful to be working.” – Skye Sauls, RN “I am grateful for my pets and my family.” – Colette Chapman, RN “I am grateful for the Bob Ross-esque landscapes.” – Tahni Murphy, RN “I am grateful for my family, my health and having a job that I love.” – Deanna Olson, RN During times of uncertainty, it’s these things, coupled with our amazing patients and teammates that keep us going,” added Olson. “I’m lucky to have the angel wings right outside my office. Seeing our angels from all departments take photos in front of the wings and hearing the love and happiness in their voices gives me hope to look towards the future – our community is in amazing hands.” ### About Renown Health Renown Health is a locally governed and locally owned, not-for-profit integrated healthcare network serving northern Nevada, Lake Tahoe and northeast California. Renown is one of there region’s largest private employers with a workforce of more than 7,000. It comprises three acute care hospitals, a rehabilitation hospital, the area’s most comprehensive medical group and urgent care network, and the region’s largest and only locally owned not-for-profit insurance company, Hometown Health. Renown has a long tradition and commitment to continually improve the care and the health of our community. For more information, visit renown.org. Media Contact: Public Relations M: 775-691-7308 E: firstname.lastname@example.org
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