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July 26, 2016 - 3:27pm
posted by Billie Owens in health, genesee county, UMMC, news.

Press release:

Employees of community service agencies and professionals are wanted to provide their expertise to help our communities become healthier. 

The Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming County health departments, along with United Memorial Medical Center and Orleans Community Health are updating the Community Health Improvement Plan and Community Services Plans.

They invite you to participate in a conversation to help shape future efforts to imporve current health concerns. Bring your suggestions for how challenges can be met!

There will be a forum to discuss challenges and options from 9 a.m. to noon on Tuesday, Aug. 9, at the Genesee County Building #2 -- Foyer Conference Room, on West Main Street Road in the Town of Batavia.

Light refreshments will be provided.

To attend, please RSVP by Aug. 2 to:

[email protected]

July 15, 2016 - 4:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, UMMC, news.
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      Kim Diamond

A Livingston County woman has been accused of possessing more than $50,000 in stolen medical equipment that disappeared from UMMC last year.

Kim Diamond, 47, was allegedly trying to sell the equipment on eBay after stealing the equipment.

She was arrested by the Livingston County Sheriff's Office on a charge of possession of stolen property. She has also reportedly been charged locally with grand larceny.

The property was reportedly found in her home in March and investigators have been positively identifying and valuing the equipment since.

Our news partner, WBTA, which broke the story of the thefts in March, reports that Diamond was employed by UMMC at the time of the thefts.

Following arraignment in Livingston County, she was released on her own recognizance. 

March 31, 2016 - 6:45am
posted by Billie Owens in news, UMMC, crime.

From our news partner WBTA:

Surgical equipment with an estimated value of nearly $300,000 has been stolen from United Memorial Medical Center and offered for sale on the popular Internet auction site eBay, WBTA and The Batavian have learned.

Batavia Police detectives are conducting a criminal investigation, the results of which are expected to be presented to the Genesee County Grand Jury in April.

Batavia Police Chief Shawn Heubusch declined  comment noting “it is an ongoing investigation.”

United Memorial Medical Center, now part of the Rochester Regional Health System, said through a spokeswoman, “UMMC is cooperating with the police.” The hospital declined further comment.

It has been learned that the prime suspect in the case is a former employee of UMMC.

Law enforcement and sources within the hospital say that the former employee, a woman, worked in the hospital's purchasing department. She resides in Livingston County.

A health care professional with knowledge of the surgical inventory, said one of the stolen items was a laparoscopic camera. A complete system consisting of the camera and related equipment, can sell for $20,000.

No arrest has been made. Law enforcement is waiting for the case to be presented to the grand jury.

A check of eBay reveals a huge market for surgical equipment. Under the category of medical and surgical equipment, there were 18,584 listings. A local doctor familiar with the market said, “you would be amazed to learn what kind of (surgical equipment) is available on eBay.”

The Web site also has a category for “used medical equipment” which contained 1,968 listings.

March 12, 2016 - 1:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in UMMC, flu, batavia, news.

Press release:

With the continued increase in the number of influenza cases at United Memorial Medical Center and in the community, the Hospital will be strictly following established visitor guidelines and implementing restrictions in order to safeguard the health of our patients.

Effective March 10, patients at United Memorial will be allowed only two (2) visitors at one time. No visitors under the age of 14 years will be allowed. Individuals with a sore throat, runny nose, fever, or other influenza type symptoms should not visit patients.

As an organization we understand the importance of loved ones and friends in the healing process. Exceptions to the visitor policy must be approved by the unit manager or nursing supervisor prior to the visitor’s arrival at the hospital. These restrictions have been put into place to protect those with weakened or fragile immune systems and those who care for them, from harm during the influenza outbreak.

Everyone should remember to use appropriate hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette to prevent the spread of influenza. Symptoms may include fever, muscle aches, sore throat, cough or nasal congestion. Individuals with fever over 100.5˚F and any of the symptoms listed are urged to stay home, seek medical advice as necessary and limit the number of people exposed. Individuals with influenza are contagious for 24 hours prior to exhibiting symptoms.

The hospital is located at 127 North St. in the City of Batavia.

March 8, 2016 - 4:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in YMCA, UMMC, batavia, business, news.

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Last fall, the folks at the YMCA were looking at remodeling their aging facility on East Main Street. Time has taken its toll and what started out as a project that might need a few hundred thousand dollars soon ballooned into a $3 million estimate.

At that price, Executive Director Rob Walker said, maybe it was time for the Y to look for a partner. 

YMCAs in other communities found ready partners in local hospitals, so Walker, in his job for a little over a year, called Dan Ireland, CEO of United Memorial Medical Center, also in his job for a little over a year, and asked for a meeting.

It was a meeting of the minds.

Ireland was already thinking it would make a lot of sense for the hospital to partner in the Y. The missions align and the two nonprofit organizations share property lines.

The logical conclusion, build a new building that would meet the needs of both the Y and UMMC.  

The hospital owns property on three sides of the way, including the location of Cary Hall and the vacant lot (formerly the Elks Lodge) next to it. It would make a lot of sense, Walker and Ireland surmised, to build something new on that land and take the current Y building down.

A task force was formed, chaired by Mark Schoell, the retired CEO of UMMC, and including people such as City Manager Jason Molino, County Manager Jay Gsell, economic development coordinator Julie Pacatte and business leaders such as John Riter, of Merrill Lynch.

The planning process took another step forward today with a community forum, consisting of about 80 invited community leaders from throughout Genesee County, at City Church's Generation Center on Center Street.

Walker is quick to point out that the Y and UMMC are in the very early stages of the process, just pre-planning, but he and Ireland are pretty clearly enthusiastic about the idea.

"The level of cooperation and spirit of collaboration between the Y and the hospital has been fun, enjoyable and something that is going to be transformative," Walker said.

It's a great opportunity improve the level of health and well-being services for the people of Genesee County, Ireland said.

"Cary Hall is aging and needs work," Ireland said. "The Y is aged and needs work. We have a tremendous plot of land with parking and those buildings; we could really do a lot if we collectively come out with the right thing. The benefit to the hospital is new space so we can offer greater service.

This morning's forum was facilitated by Mary Ellen and Rick Peterson, both from the national YMCA office.  

The 80 or so participants were assigned groups of five or six people with a facilitator who helped guide the discussion and wrote group thoughts and ideas on white sheets of paper. The groups were asked to take about 12 minutes on each of five questions, such as what challenges the community faces, how those challenges can best be met, what can be done locally to help families, and how can personal well-being issues be addressed.

All of those sheets of paper -- dozens and dozens of them -- were gathered up after the meeting and the task force will now review them and use them to produce a report by May or June on how the Y and UMMC can best meet community needs and what should go into a joint facility to meet those needs.

"We can't just take the Y in Rochester or the Y in Buffalo and take a cookie cutter and drop it in Batavia," Walker said. "All the stuff that is in this room right now, on the walls, this is what we're going to take and make spaces to meet those needs. We don't know what it's going to look like, but it's going to be pretty."

Walker said the task force will also be able to draw on needs assessments completed by other area agencies over the past few years, such as the Office for the Aging, Health Department, school district and United Way.

The applause line of the morning came from one gentleman sitting at the back of the room who pointed out the participants were all white, and mostly close in age. He suggested there needs to be some needs assessments from a group with greater diversity and representing a broader range of community members.

Both Walker and Ireland said the gentleman's comment was right on target and that there were people invited who could bring greater diversity, but they didn't show, so there will be some follow up with them.  

"We recognize the need to strengthen the task force so there is an equal representation," Ireland said.

Walker was clearly energized by the morning's discussion and believes if all of these plans come together into a real project, it will transform Downtown, transform Batavia and, in fact, all of Genesee County.

"Today was pretty inspirational for me," Walker said. "The minds, the passion here for Batavia; it's a proud community. We have tremendous potential to make this projection transformational and make Batavia a destination city."

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January 28, 2016 - 9:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in UMMC Cancer Center, Lipson Cancer Center, UMMC, batavia, business.

Officials celebrated the opening of the new cancer treatment center at UMMC on Wednesday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The $6.5 million center will provide local cancer patients with state-of-the-art treatment.

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Dan Ireland, president of UMMC, thanked the dozens of people involved in making the new treatment center a reality. He recalled the most recent UMMC Foundation Auction, where organizers held a special event with the hope of raising $2,000 to help pay for chemo treatment chairs. Donors that night contributed $26,000, covering the cost of 11 treatment stations.

"For the community, by the community," Ireland said. "That demonstrated in just a small portion what our community can do together to make sure their local neighbors have the access to the services they need."

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Dawn Lipson, of the Lipson Institute, and with her husband, namesake of the Lipson Cancer Center, said the institute aims to raise hopes and dreams in the fight against cancer.

 "We all hope for a better tomorrow," she said. "We dream about a brighter future. The biggest weapon we have in the fight against cancer is the indomitable spirit. The fact that you all came together, we all part of this big family, and you made this happen, I thank you from the bottom of my heart."

Eric Bieber, president and CEO of the Rochester Regional Health System, came with a gift, the Bell of Hope.

"This is for patients completing treatment," Bieber said. "They ring the bell as they complete treatment. It's a right of passage for their resiliency in their cancer fight, recognizing that making it through weeks of treatment is an achievement. It's our hope that as patients here it, they garner hope and encouragement and they look forward to the day they can ring it."

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It was a transfer of a license from another hospital in the Rochester Regional system that enabled UMMC to acquire and install a linear accelerator for radiation treatment at the center.

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Suggested Reading: "The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer," by Siddhartha Mukherjee.

January 4, 2016 - 10:53am
posted by Howard B. Owens in UMMC, first baby.

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Press release:

United Memorial Medical Center is pleased to congratulate Gregory and Odilia Rebeca Coffta on the birth of their daughter, Emilia Noemi, the first baby to be born in Genesee County in 2016. Emilia was born at 8:03 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 1. She weighed 7 pounds, 2 ounces and was 19 ¾ inches in length. Emilia is the couple’s first child. She was delivered by certified midwife, Kim Danser, CNM, of the Women’s Care Center at United Memorial.

Emilia’s parents recently purchased a new family home in the City of Batavia where they are residing. Mr. Coffta is a teacher of English as a New Language (ESL) in the Williamsville Central School District. Mrs. Coffta is the statewide data coordinator for Migrant Education.

Emilia is the first grandchild for Jim and Christine Coffta. of Oakfield, and the first granddaughter for Hector and Lety Recinos, of Guatemala City, Guatemala.

The happy parents stated that their birth experience at United Memorial was, “Just fantastic. We want to thank the nurses Bonnie, Natalie, Janet, -- really everyone. We received so much support throughout everything, especially with breastfeeding.”

“As a new mother, it’s nice to know we can trust our care providers,” continued Mrs. Coffta.

As the New Year’s baby, Emilia and her parents received a $200 gift card from United Memorial.

November 23, 2015 - 4:31pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, UMMC, batavia, Attica.

An Attica woman who was arrested for attempting to bite an emergency room nurse and punching her several times in the stomach will spend at least a year-and-a-half in State Prison after pleading guilty this morning to attempted assault in the second degree.

In an unusual twist, she was also sentenced today.

Kerri L. Forsberg, 43, of Alexander Road, Attica, who appeared in court in a wheelchair, has medical issues that meant she couldn't be housed in any of the county jails Genesee County uses to hold female inmates. In those circumstances, the state will hold an unsentenced inmate, and at no cost to the county, said District Attorney Lawrence Friedman.

The difficulty, however, is that Forsberg was held in Bedford, and Genesee County deputies were required to take her back and forth between the prison and her court appearances.

So some of her appearances were actually waived, including her plea-cutoff. She was planning to take her case to trial, Friedman explained, but when she changed her mind and decided to take the plea offer, arrangements were made for Forsberg to enter her plea and be sentenced on the same day.

Friedman said the Probation Department was "great" for their handling of the expedited pre-sentence investigation. Investigators obtained the case file this morning, combined it with Forsberg's PSI from a previous case in Wyoming County, and were able to meet the deadline of 4 p.m. for the completed report.

Forsberg is eligible for release in one-and-a-half years, but could serve up to three years. She was sentenced as a second felony offender.

She was arrested in early July for attempting to bite a UMMC nurse and punching her in the stomach.

October 21, 2015 - 4:00pm
posted by Session Placeholder in health, UMMC.
Event Date and Time: 
October 27, 2015 -
4:00pm to 8:00pm

United Memorial Medical Center and the Cancer Services Partnership will provide free health screenings to Genesee County women between the ages of 40-64 with no insurance or high deductibles, on Tuesday, Oct. 27, from 4-8 p.m. at the Jerome Center, 16 Bank St., Batavia. Appointments are necessary for some of the screenings.

October 21, 2015 - 3:39pm
posted by Billie Owens in health, UMMC, Cancer Services Partnership.

Press release:

United Memorial Medical Center and the Cancer Services Partnership will provide free health screenings to Genesee County women between the ages of 40-64 with no insurance or high deductibles, on Tuesday, Oct. 27, from 4-8 p.m. at the Jerome Center, 16 Bank St., Batavia. Appointments are necessary for some of the screenings.

For women age 40-64, nurse midwife, Cecilia Stearns, MSN CNM will perform women’s health screenings, including pap smears, pelvic exams and clinical breast exams. Additional services available at the event include mammography, total cholesterol, blood pressure and take home colorectal cancer screening kits.

All screenings will be provided at no charge. Funds are available for follow-up care if necessary. Please call United Memorial’s Healthy Living Department to schedule an appointment at (585) 344-5331. Light refreshments, health information and free giveaways will also be available.

October 2, 2015 - 9:55am
posted by Howard B. Owens in UMMC, batavia.

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More than 300 people were at Batavia Downs last night for UMMC's annual Pink Hat dinner, which honors cancer survivors. 

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September 25, 2015 - 6:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in UMMC.

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UMMC's personnel practiced dealing with a mass casualty scenario today with area high school students filling in as patients. The scenario involved a collapse of bleachers at a sporting event. The primary purpose was for staff to practice triage and workflow in dealing with a large influx of patients into the emergency room (a hallway next to the actual emergency room was used to simulate the emergency room).

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The command center.

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Personnel in a staging area awaiting assignments if more patients come in.

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