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Mobility, mobility, mobility

Eastside Medical Center Joint Destinations opens

The new Joint Destinations unit at Eastside Medical Center held a ribbon cutting ceremony on September 26th with a surprise dedication of the gym to W. Kehne Moeller, M.D.

EMC’s Orthopaedic Staff (L-R): Shaun Traub MD; Jeff Traub MD, Larry Bircoll MD, Kehne Moeller MD, Shane Smith MD, David Harkins DO, Craig Mines MD.

Joint Destinations offers the most current options for joint replacement along with a concentrated effort by the staff on behalf of each patient to make the experience pleasant and successful. From the first visit through post-op, patients are educated, encouraged and cared for each step of the way. “Mobility, mobility, mobility is our goal,” says Mary Jo Barnett, Director of Joint on what to expect throughout the experience, we are able to involve them in their own recovery.” 

According to Kim Ryan, CEO, “Expectation setting is a key component to our program.” The concept of patient involvement is paramount to the speed at which patients are able to recover – a sense of mobility that they might not have enjoyed for many years. Eastside partnered with Marshall Steele, a physician-led healthcare service focused on creating an environment with recovering patient mobility as the focus.

Eastside has created a Destination Center of Superior Performance that requires all patient touch points be integrated seamlessly, creating an optimal patient experience across the entire continuum of care. In addition, the program creates a complete delivery system beginning with comprehensive community education, continuing though primary care and specialty physician interactions, and extending through operative and/ or non-operative treatment pathways. It also includes tracking patient-reported results to ensure that each patient experience is outstanding and every patient outcome potential is maximized. “Our patients are better prepared going into surgery and their outcome is far better because of the education and commitment of our staff,” says Dr. Kehne Moeller, Medical Director, Joint Destinations. “It is all about patient education and care.” 

Dr. Moeller emphasizes that Joint Destinations is an example of a team approach to healthcare. Besides requiring that all staff be in tune with the needs of patients, they must also develop exceptional communication skills with one another. “Everyone here has a role,” says Dr. Moeller. “The patient plays a huge role in recovery – sometimes patients come in thinking that surgery is something someone is going to do to them; we make it so that they are part of the process and that surgery is one component of gaining back their mobility and improving their quality of life as quickly and efficiently as possible.” 

Each member of the staff echoed the commitment to making joint replacement a successful process with a defined goal in mind. “There is a lot of talent here at Eastside and the community is blessed with some very well-trained, compassionate and competent orthopedic surgeons,” says Dr. Moeller. “Our staff here is dedicated to supporting the entire process for complete success.” Dr. Moeller goes on to say that Marshall Steele was instrumental in guiding the team every step of the way. “Each time anyone from our team visited a Marshall Steele hospital, they came back and shared a wealth of ideas that we were able to use in planning our facility.”

As Medical Director, Dr. Moeller feels that his role is as a facilitator. Watching the center run with efficiency and staff dedication resulting in faster patient recovery with immediate increases in quality of life is quite a reward. It was a pleasant surprise to find that his colleagues chose to dedicate the Eastside Joint Gym to him.   “I am grateful and humbled by the work that everyone has put into this project,” says Dr. Moeller. “It is quite a facility and I am thankful.”  

The dedicated nursing staff was presented with flowers for their hard work and input towards opening Joint Destinations. “I could not be more proud or thankful,” says Mary Jo Barnett. “This is just the beginning of something so good here at Eastside and every department took such pride every step of the way.” A round of applause and gratitude from hospital leadership erupted in the hallways of the new center and flowed over into the “gym” where physical therapy takes place just a few steps down the hallway from patient rooms. “The goal is to have patients support one another along with the staff,” says Barnett. “They are able to eat in the dining room here on our floor with their family and support staff.” Creating a tight-knit community for recovery is precisely the point of having everything a recovering joint care patient could need within “walking distance”. 

The measure of success for such a facility might be found within results-based data numbers and surveys, but one patient measured success by his own experience. As one of the first patients to go through the new Eastside Joint Destinations process, Greg Miller’s total hip replacement began with education long before his surgery. “It went much easier than my first hip replacement,” says Greg. “I knew what to expect before surgery and what they expected me to do to keep it going.” He underwent surgery at 8am and took his first steps by 3pm that same day. “I was shocked by how well it went,” says Greg. “I was able to walk and my recovery went faster than the first time.” Greg worked through his daily physical therapy to strengthen the muscles that he had not realized had deteriorated without the proper use. “They didn’t treat me like I was sick,” says Greg. “They told me how to work through my new joint and how to not cause any damage.” With his training done, Greg felt confident when he left Eastside and is looking forward to going back to work. “They have made it so that I can work until I am ready to retire.” 

With patient endorsements like Greg Miller’s and the resounding support of an exceptionally committed staff, Eastside Joint Destinations is poised to change the quality of life for the community that the hospital has served for generations. “Eastside is a true community hospital,” says Dr. Moeller. “We are happy to be able to provide the best in care and Joint Destinations is going to change the level of care and successful recovery for our community.”

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Front Row (L to R)- Mandy Lee,RN; Chelsea Sosebee, RN; Karin Ihle,RN; Mary Jo Barnett,RN Director; Erebari Naagbi, Ortho Tech; and Barb Abdullah,RN.Back row (L to R)- Lori Adams,Orhto Tech; Frank De la Cruz,Ortho Tech; Matt Reyburn,Concierge; Cindy Ferst,Joint Care Coordinator; Elisabeth Long,RN; Veronica Elliott,RN; and Jarod Miller,RN.