Day in the Life in Good Sam’s L&D unit

Day in the life is designed to give our associates and patients a “behind the scenes” look at what different departments and people do inside the hospital. It takes many teams within the hospital to ensure we are providing the best care for our patients.

In celebration of National Breastfeeding Awareness Month in August, we took a peak at Good Samaritan Medical Center’s Labor & Delivery unit.

At Good Sam, we help our moms relax after baby is born by offering complimentary massages from our Center for Integrative Medicine massage therapists.

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Here’s what we work so hard for…a happy family after a special delivery in one of GSMC’s mom/baby suites.

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To put your mind at ease and ensure your baby is safe on the road, Good Sam has a free Baby’s First Ride car seat check program before you leave the hospital.

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There’s nothing we love more than babies at Good Samaritan Medical Center like baby Cooper and nurse, Abi.

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Three generations in our NICU!


We support our moms with one-on-one lactation help to set the groundwork for successful breastfeeding.

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Dear Patient, Thank You!

Medical Cardiology team at Saint Joseph Hospital with patient thank you cards.

Medical Cardiology team at Saint Joseph Hospital with patient thank you cards.

At Saint Joseph Hospital, our HCAHPS Champions Team, made up of leaders from all departments, came up with the idea to send patients thank you cards once they got home.  Some units were already doing this, so building on what they were already doing well, we created a standard Thank You card that everyone could easily use.  Associates in each unit sign and write messages in the cards, which are then mailed to our patients at home as a compassionate goodbye and thank you for allowing us to care for and be a part of their journey.

We started with a small trial, and officially launched the program in April.  So far, we are hearing great stories from our associates and patients!  Here’s what our patients have said on their survey comments so far:

“[…] they were just very nice, very, very nice. I got a thank you card with the nurses who had signed it.  It was a good experience and if I ever come back to Denver, I’ll come there.”

“They were all good experiences. I was pleasantly surprised to get the note in the mail, where each of the care givers (even though I don’t remember their names) had signed a personal comment on the note. I thought that was very unusual and very nice.”

“All of my experience there were good. I didn’t have any bad experiences; they even sent me a card after I got home.”

“I did think it was nice to have a letter after I was out of the hospital from the members of the staff. It was a Thank You letter.”

“The other day I got a thank you note from the nurses saying they enjoyed taking care of me. I thought that was nice.”

“Everything was good. I was treated very good. The nurse staff, they sent me a card telling me, it was very good.”

“I got a very nice card after I got home signed by three or four of the nurses. Thanking me for being such a good patient and allowing them to participate in my care and that was quite a surprise to me.”

“I received a thank you letter from the nurses. Never in my life have I ever received a letter thanking me for being a good patient, or whatever they said. I tell you, I thought it was wonderful. I don’t know who should I call at Saint Jo’s to tell them that, that was just very nice. I received this letter, or this little note yesterday. Like I said, that was just astounding to me that they did that. It was really something.”

Contributed by Sarah Montanari, Patient Experience Manager, Quality & Safety, Saint Joseph Hospital


Good Sam Bike Jam a Roaring Success!

Newsletter - Bike Jam 2The 10th Annual Good Sam Bike Jam, held Sunday, August 28, was a resounding success thanks to the over 600 cyclists who took part in the event as well as the numerous volunteers, staff and sponsors who made the event possible. Celebrating a record-breaking year, the 2016 Bike Jam drew the highest number of cyclists and sponsor contributions to date.

Presented by the Good Samaritan Medical Center Foundation, this year’s Bike Jam featured six different rides: a 100, 62, 45, 32 and 16 mile course as well as a family-friendly 3-mile course. The 100-mile expert course included a King & Queen of the Mountain time trial section. Bike Jam visitors were also able to enjoy food, adult and other beverages, live music, and fun activities from the Butterfly Pavilion.

The winners of this year’s King & Queen of the Mountain challenge were William Pankonin with a time of 15:38.15, and Carolanne Williams with a time of 18:33.94. Full results for the Bike Jam can be viewed at

Pictures from the event can be viewed from the Good Sam Bike Jam photo gallery.


Palisade Peaches draw thousands of fans

newsletter - booth2 Hordes of peach fans flocked to Lafayette’s Old Town district on Saturday, August 20 to enjoy upwards of 20 tons of delicious Colorado-raised Palisade peaches. Acting as a sponsor of the event, Good Samaritan Medical Center hosted a table featuring the hospital’s Trauma and other services.

Drawing a steady stream of visitors, the Good Sam table offered various “schwag” giveaways, including peach-themed fans, tote bags, squishy stress balls and first-aid kits. Volunteers also handed out informational materials on fall prevention, distracted drivers and a guide for aging drivers.

Janelle Wagner, a nurse practitioner from Good Sam’s Cancer Centers of Colorado, provided numerous guests with free skin cancer screenings and handed out information on smoking cessation and the HPV vaccine.newsletter3

Did you miss out on the tasty peach event? Do you like beer and/or volunteering to help a good cause? Then we want to hear from you!

The Lafayette Brew Fest is coming up Saturday, September 10 and we are looking for volunteers! Please email Tiffany Anderson if you are interested in volunteering:

Lutheran Names Steve Brown, MD, as Chief Medical Officer

Lutheran Medical Center today announced that Steven Brown, MD, will become their Chief Medical Officer, effective Sept. 30. He fills the position recently vacated by Dr. Christina Johnson, VP and Chief Operating Officer, who served in both roles for several months.

“We are extremely fortunate to have Dr. Brown in this crucial role,” said Grant Wicklund, Lutheran President and CEO. “His commitment to safe, quality care and growth at Lutheran will be a beacon for all staff for the future. In his 30 years here, he has come to know this hospital and the medical staff as well as anyone.”


Dr. Brown, a radiologist with Rocky Mountain Radiologists, has actively participated in both clinical and non-clinical programs at Lutheran. He also has served in leadership roles at Lutheran and in numerous professional societies. He been medical staff president, chair of the Credentials Committee and co-chair of the Clinical Operations Council at Lutheran and is currently on the board of directors of Rocky Mountain Radiologists as well as the Lutheran Medical Center Foundation Board.

“The physicians at Lutheran are deeply committed to giving the highest quality patient care, as is all of the staff,” Dr. Brown said. “Many of them found, as I did, that once you come to Lutheran, you just want to stay here. It’s a unique place and I look forward to working alongside my colleagues to have a more lasting impact on the health of our community.”

Dr. Brown earned his bachelor’s degree at Colorado State University, and medical degree from the University of California, San Diego. He completed his radiology residency at Stanford and a fellowship in interventional neuroradiology at Wilford Hall USAF Medical Center while serving in the U.S. Air Force, where he also achieved the rank of major.

He has published numerous professional articles and has served on several state and national health care advisory committees. A Colorado native, Dr. Brown lives in Golden with his wife, Susan Brown. They have two adult daughters.

Part 2 of 2: CEO Talks Healthcare “Big Picture”

BigPictureTwo weeks ago, we shared Mike Slubowski’s experience shadowing a nurse at Saint Joseph Hospital. Mike is President and CEO of SCL Health, and he’s tasked with leading our $2.5 billion health system through some of the most profound changes in healthcare’s history. After hearing from Mike in part 1 about his experience at the bedside, in part 2 we’ll get a look at the “big picture” in healthcare, as discussed at a recent Colorado Hospital Association forum with futurist and national healthcare expert Ian Morrison.

Read Part 1: CEO Shadows Nurse at Saint Joe’s.

Here are a few of Mike’s takeaways from the forum:

  • Consumers are struggling. People face enormous out-of-pocket liability for their healthcare costs. They feel powerless, because they pay more of the increases each year. In response, they look for the cheapest alternatives and defer the preventive screenings, weight management, and other healthcare services that would moderate those costs.
  • Consolidation continues. Both health plans as well as health systems continue to consolidate. Interestingly, there seems to be less concern regarding health plan consolidation than health system consolidation. That’s likely because people believe consolidation of systems is more about bargaining leverage with payers than about quality or value, even if we get there eventually.
  • Will Employers Stay or Go? In recent years there’s been much debate and concern about employers’ willingness to continue to provide insurance for their employees with the rising costs of healthcare and the health insurance exchanges introduced by the Affordable Care Act. Employers are seeing moderate respite from double-digit premium increases, but the increases are still running at two times inflation (CPI), and most businesses consider cost increases as “out of control.” However, fewer employers are looking to quit providing coverage to employees, because recruitment and retention is important, especially in an improved economy, and health insurance remains an important benefit for most job seekers. The appeal of private and public exchanges has cooled for employers, as they don’t think that current initiatives and tactics to control costs are very effective. Large employers are bulking up their internal expertise to manage employee health costs and are not depending on payers, third-party administrators and benefit managers as much.
  • Scrutiny over prices. Employers who are footing most of the bill for healthcare expenses recognize that providers are making all their profits on commercial patients, which subsidizes losses on public programs (Medicaid and Medicare). They are most concerned about hospital inpatient prices, specialty pharmaceuticals, cancer care and outpatient hospital prices.
  • Specialty Pharmaceuticals – The explosion in specialty spending puts the pharma industry in the spotlight. Consumer research suggests strong support for price controls on pharmaceuticals and hospitals.
  • Massive Medicaid Enrollment – The U.S. Medicaid population edges out the entire population of France! We have more than 70.5 million people now enrolled in Medicaid, and that number is certain to get bigger with continued Medicaid expansion. It covers children and moms, as well as “dual eligibles” for Medicare and Medicaid, and it is the default long-term care policy for the middle class. And with Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, eligibility has increased significantly. There continues to be churning in Medicaid eligible and the exchange population. Consequently, many providers are opting out of Medicaid. Can we design a financially sustainable delivery model for Medicaid?
  • Making “Volume to Value” Real – Integration among healthcare providers continues to accelerate, and progress is being made toward the “triple aim” (improving outcomes, reducing cost, managing population health). Yet reimbursement change still isn’t moving fast enough to reward different behaviors. The Pareto Principle, which talks about how a small percentage of input accounts for most output, still applies in healthcare, where 5 percent of population accounts for half of all spending). This means using advanced analytics to segment populations served and developing targeted interventions is critical. And health disparities continue to be evident, based on income, race, etc. The U.S. spends much more on healthcare than social services in comparison to other developed countries, and the reality is that social services can often be better substitutes for what is now over-utilization of health care services that provide little to no benefit.

So the opportunity and challenge for us is: how do we connect these two world views – the “big picture” and the “ground level” scene, as observed in shadowing our bedside nurses?

It is clear that socioeconomic issues and lifestyle choices have a dramatic impact on the triple aim of improving outcomes, reducing cost, and effectively managing the health of populations we serve. It is clear that we are making progress in our delivery system at achieving the triple aim.

But, are we able to make a dent in the well-being of the people we serve by going more “upstream” with social services and other community agencies, and dealing with the issues of income inequality and poverty, homelessness, drug abuse, mental health, etc.? How can we translate the imperatives of access, cost, quality, and safety into simple and obvious cases for support, and how do we make it easy for our caregivers to deliver care and “connect the dots” so that they can see that the interventions they are providing can lead to better outcomes for patients with the right “warm handoffs” of patients to others in the continuum? How can we inspire caregivers with the mantra that cost and quality can be improved simultaneously? How can we ensure that caregivers have a voice and key role in the redesign of our delivery system?

I don’t have answers to all of these questions, but I am convinced that we can do a better job of connecting the big picture with the ground level for our organization. I am also convinced that our people have the answers, and if we engage and inspire them in a meaningful way in our transformation, we can move further and faster!

$100 Reward! Complete a Biometric Screening & Health Risk Questionnaire

2016 wise and wellSCL Health is offering benefits-eligible associates an opportunity to have free and convenient biometric screenings as part of the 2016 Wise & Well Incentive Program! Take advantage of this opportunity to know your health numbers and learn more about how you can improve or maintain your health.

When you complete a biometric screening, you are halfway toward earning your $100 reward in the incentive program. A total of $200 is offered to every benefits-eligible associate who completes all required wellness activities by Nov. 30, 2016. The award will appear in Jan. 20, 2017, paychecks*. See below for a list of all of the 2016 Wise & Well incentive opportunities and details.

Complete your biometric screening in one of three ways:

  1. Attend an SCL Health onsite event. Events will be held Aug. 31 through Sept. 30 at certain sites, so reserve an appointment today!
  2. Visit a Quest Patient Service Center (PSC). The PSC option is available now through Oct. 31 to allow you to schedule and complete an appointment right away.
  3. Self-report results from a recent doctor or lab visit. Results received between Dec. 1, 2015, and Nov. 30, 2016, may also be entered on the wellness portal to earn incentive credit. Remember, all SCL Health medical plans cover one annual screening at no cost to you! For non-SCL Health medical plans, check with your carrier to confirm coverage details.

The venipuncture screening consists of the following tests: Lipid Panel: Total Cholesterol, HDL-Cholesterol, LDL Cholesterol, Cholesterol/HDL ratio, and Triglycerides; Glucose Measurement; Hemoglobin A1c; Blood Pressure and Pulse; Weight and Height; Waist Circumference; BMI measurements.

We’re building a culture of health and wellness. SCL Health’s mission is to improve the health of the people and communities we serve, and it is essential that associates reflect healthy habits for ourselves, our families and those we serve. Each associate shares accountability in managing his or her health and healthcare costs to keep the plans affordable for everyone.

Get started today!

Log in to to view upcoming onsite biometric screening events, details on how to schedule an appointment or self-report results, and complete all of the 2016 Wise & Well opportunities to earn your $200 incentive. Here is a breakdown of each task and the awards for each:

  • Health Risk Questionnaire AND Biometric Screening$100
  • Financial Wellness Workshop (Requires completing a portion of the workshop at least once a week for 4 weeks. Must be started by Oct. 31) $50
  • Healthy Activity (Requires completing a portion of a workshop or challenge at least once a week for 4-6 weeks. Must be started by Oct. 31)$50

Confidentiality is a top priority. Preventure (our program administrator) is HIPAA compliant and follows all legal processes for protecting personal health information. Preventure never has and never will share individual results with anyone at SCL Health.

If you have questions about the Wise & Well Incentives Program, contact Preventure at 888-321-4326 or email

*Wellness incentive payouts are considered supplemental income by the IRS and will be taxed accordingly.

Meet Artie, Featured in our New People Healing People Commercial

Artie-ThumbWhen Artie found out she had stage two breast cancer, she was scared. She was also scared when she first met with Dr. Julie Barone, who performed her surgery. But thanks to her care team and her circle of support, she became less afraid.

“My doctors knew I could beat it,” Artie said of her cancer. “They had more belief in me than I had in myself.”

Treatment at Saint Joseph Hospital, along with that confidence, helped lead Artie on her road to remission. Now she is healthy, happy and able to spend plenty of time with family, dancing, making bead jewelry, and whatever else she wants. Her new commercial, which is the latest in our People Healing People campaign, start airing this week in the Denver region. You can watch her TV commercial below, and go to our campaign site to view extended videos and other campaign materials.

Also, watch the behind-the-scenes video from Artie’s commercial shoot and her emotional reunion with Dr. Barone.

Spend an Hour With the Mayo Clinic’s Innovation Expert

Registration is open for all SCL Health associates and providers to sign up to attend any or all sessions in our Innovation Speaker Series, providing free access to four national healthcare experts and thought leaders in the industry.

Click here to Register to Attend the Innovation Speaker Series.

The series is sponsored by the SCL Health Virtual Health team, and features one speaker per month starting on September 14. This Webex series will explore how people are redesigning healthcare with creative approaches that improve the lives of the communities they serve.

Who should attend? Anyone who is eager to solve problems that enable transformative change in healthcare delivery – from front-line clinical staff to senior leaders.

How to attend: Each one-hour session will be offered via Webex, so those who work in front of a computer can register and attend from his or her own desk. Care sites are in the process of setting up Viewing Parties so associates can attend together in the same room and watch the Webex on a wall monitor. For those who want to hear the information but cannot attend at the exact time of the event, please know that the sessions will be recorded and made available at a later date.

Here is the Innovation Speaker Series schedule:

Larry Keeley on September 14:

Larry Keeley

Larry Keeley is a Strategist and Managing Director at Doblin, and has been directly credited with helping Mayo Clinic create advanced innovation initiatives that are helping to transform one of the world’s leading healthcare providers in the midst of radical industry shift. Keeley was named one of seven Innovation Gurus by Businessweek Magazine.

Molly Joel Coye on October 19:

Molly Coye

Molly Joel Coye, MD, MPH, comes to NEHI from UCLA Health where she served as Chief Innovation Officer for UCLA Health and Clinical Professor of Family Medicine. Dr. Coye was also the founder and CEO of the Health Technology Center (HealthTech), a nonprofit education and research organization established in 2000 that became the premier forecasting organization for emerging technologies in healthcare.

Aaron Martin on November 17:

Aaron Martin

Aaron Martin serves as Senior Vice President of Strategy and Innovation at Providence Health & Services. He is responsible for leading Providence to become more consumer-focused and technology-enabled in this new world of healthcare.

Roy Rosin on December 7:

Roy Rosin

Roy Rosin is Chief Innovation Officer at Penn Medicine, working to rapidly design and implement high-impact healthcare delivery practices. In previous roles he led new business creation at Intuit, which now consistently appears on Forbes’ list of the most innovative companies in the world.


Time-Lapse Video of Summer BBQ at Broomfield

The sun was shining on the annual summer BBQ for System Services associates at the Broomfield Campus last Friday, August 19. The event was hosted by the Spirit Council, and included barbeque catered by Bennett’s BBQ, ice cream served by senior leaders, a photo booth and games, and music by Allen Goodman (Senior Revenue Cycle Analyst).

Thank you to everyone who participated or helped with this deliciously fun event!

Allen created a one-minute time-lapse video of the event. Check it out!

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