From the Offices of Jeffrey A. Flaks and Jeffry Nestler, MD
January 20, 2013 Edition
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St. Francis Care said Jan. 16 it plans to join Ascension Health, the largest Catholic health network in the U.S. Both organizations have signed a letter of intent in which St. Francis would join the Missouri-based health network.
Chris Dadlez, president and CEO of St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center, said that if everything goes according to plan, state and federal regulatory requirements will be secured within six months to a year. St. Francis is currently not-for-profit, but would become a taxable, for-profit organization if the deal goes through. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed Wednesday.
St. Francis Care is the parent organization of Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center, which is the largest Catholic hospital in New England. Officials for the hospital said they didn't expect that the deal would lead to any immediate changes in staffing.
Dadlez said the deal would help St. Francis adapt to anticipated changes in health care expected under the Affordable Health Care Act. Among those changes, he said, is that reimbursement from Medicare will move to bundled payments, rather than payments for every service, "and it's up to you to manage that."
It's a change that will require rethinking the hospital's infrastructure and repositioning physicians. Work has already begun toward that goal, he said, but he said more financial resources were needed.
"There's so much more to be done as an organization," he said. "We needed to secure a partner with the financial capital to get to that next level."
He said St. Francis is working toward "population management," in which a patient's different health services are better coordinated and there is more at-home treatment. Dadlez said Ascension Health has proven successful in that kind of restructuring.
Leo Brideau, president and CEO of Ascension Health Care, said changes would mostly affect people with chronic conditions, such as diabetes or high blood pressure.
"We want to be your partner to help manage and maintain your health throughout your life," he said. "It can't be hospitalcentric anymore."
Founded in 1897, St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center has 616 beds and 65 bassinets. Ascension Health Care has more than 500 locations in 19 states and in Washington, D.C.
Influx of Flu Patients Leads To Record Number of Inpatients
Hartford Hospital experienced our highest-ever number of inpatients over the past few weeks with an influx of flu patients. We opened more space for additional beds. As always, our staff’s performance has been exemplary. When the families we serve need us, we are always ready.
For many staff members, this jump in volume has meant longer hours, changed schedules and added pressure. What is striking – but not surprising – is that staff members have responded with patience, flexibility, ingenuity and determination.
In everything they do, they clearly demonstrate our values of integrity, excellence, caring and safety, always doing the right, best, kindest and safest thing for our patients, their families and one another during this time of urgency.
Organ and Tissue Donation FAQs
Hartford Hospital launched an ambitious goal this year - to get 1,000 new organ and tissue donors signed up on the Life Choice donor registry by Feb. 1. We are close to that goal.
If you are not already registered to be a donor, visit www.becomeadonor.org and fill out the online form. Please choose "Hartford Hospital" from the drop-down menu under "How did you hear about the Donate Life New England Registry?"
A representative from Life Choice Donor Services will be in the lobby on Monday, Jan. 28 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. to encourage people to sign up on the organ donor registry.
We have prepared some "Frequently Asked Questions about Organ and Tissue Donation." You can download them here.
Finances Mixed In December
Inpatient activity during the month of December equaled budget, and were greater than last year by 1.3%.
Outpatient revenues fell below budget for the month by 6%. Areas with significant unfavorable variances were Cardiology, Radiology, Emergency Services, Ambulatory Surgery and GI/Endoscopy.
Year to date, inpatient discharges are .9% greater than budget and 1.7% greater than the discharges for last year. Outpatient revenues are approximately 1.2% greater than budget through year to date December 2012.
Hartford HealthCare ACO Selected As One of 106 New ACOs in Medicare
Hartford HealthCare Accountable Care Organization has been selected as one of 106 new Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) in Medicare, ensuring as many as 4 million Medicare beneficiaries across the United States now have access to high-quality, coordinated care, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced today.
and health care providers can establish Accountable Care Organizations in order to work together to provide higher-quality care to their patients. Since passage of the Affordable Care Act, more than 250 Accountable Care Organizations have been established. Beneficiaries using ACOs always have the freedom to choose doctors inside or outside of the ACO. Accountable Care Organizations share with Medicare any savings generated from lowering the growth in health care costs, while meeting standards for
quality of care.
“Accountable Care Organizations save money for Medicare and deliver higher-quality care to people with Medicare,” said Secretary Sebelius.
must meet quality standards to ensure that savings are achieved through improving care coordination and providing care that is appropriate, safe, and timely. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has established 33 quality measures on care coordination and patient safety, appropriate use of preventive health services, improved care for at-risk populations, and patient and caregiver experience of care. Federal savings from this initiative are up to $940 million over four years.
The new ACOs include a diverse cross-section of physician practices across the country. Roughly half of all ACOs are physician-led organizations that serve fewer than 10,000 beneficiaries. Approximately 20 percent of ACOs include community health centers, rural health centers and critical access hospitals that serve low-income and rural communities.
group announced today also includes 15 Advance Payment Model ACOs, physician-based or rural providers who would benefit from greater access to capital to invest in staff, electronic health record systems, or other infrastructure required to improve care coordination. Medicare will recoup advance payments over time through future shared savings. In addition to these ACOs, last year CMS launched the Pioneer ACO program for large provider groups able to take greater financial responsibility for the costs
and care of their patients over time. In total, Medicare’s ACO partners will serve more than 4 million beneficiaries nationwide.
Dr. Laura Saunders To Begin Monthly Radio Segment on Family Life
One of our IOL child psychologists, Laura Saunders, PhD, will be starting a monthly segment focusing on psychoeducation, addressing developmental milestones and parenting issues on The Mary Jones Show on WDRC 1360am. She will share some basic research findings and highlight some strategies to improve the quality of family life.
Mary Jones is a well known AM personality. Dr. Saunders got to know her after doing several radio interviews following the Sandy Hook tragedy.
The first segment is Wednesday, Jan. 30 at 5 p.m. The topic will be: The Psychological Benefits of the Family Dinner.
Dr. Richard Cartun To Speak at National Immunohistochemistry Meeting in Miami
Dr. Richard Cartun, director of Immunopathology in the Department Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, will be the keynote speaker at the 7th Annual Applied Immunohistochemistry and Molecular Pathology meeting February 3-7 in Miami, FL.
Dr. Gary Spiegel To Speak at Emanuel Synagogue
Emanuel Synagogue Brotherhood Presents: Evening dessert/speaker program with Dr. Gary Spiegel,
chief of interventional neuroradiology, Hartford Hospital: “Saving the Brain: Prevention & Intervention” on Tuesday, Feb. 26 at 6:30 p.m. Cost is $5,or $8 after Feb. 22. All are invited. Your $5 payment by Feb. 22 is your RSVP. Bring or mail it to the Brotherhood mailbox at the Shul. For more information, email SSHEMKOV@GMAIL.COM.
Innovative and Complex Care
Department of Urology Study Results on Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy To Be Presented
The Hartford Hospital Department of Urology’s study on the effects of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on patients after prostate cancer surgery has been accepted for a moderated poster session at this year’s annual meeting of the American Urological Association (AUA) in May in San Diego.
Dr. Kelly Chiles, chief resident, will make the presentation.
The AUA’s annual meeting is the largest gathering of urologists in the world.
Research and Academics
Pancreatic Cancer Symposium
Farmington Marriott Hotel
Hartford Hospital’s "Pancreatic Cancer Symposium: Prevention, Risk Factors, Diagnosis and Advances in Treatment" will be held on Friday, March 8 from 12-6 p.m. at the Farmington Marriott Hotel, 15 Farm Springs Road in Farmington.
Speakers include: Michael Golioto, MD; Michael Karasik MD; Linda Steinmark, MS, CGC; Saverio Ligato, MD; Michael
O'Loughlin, MD; C. Max Schmidt, MD, PhD, MBA, FACS; Ramon Jimenez, MD; Pragna Kapadia,
MD and Timothy Hong, MD.
This seminar includes a focus on the use of clinical staging, the use of appropriate prognostic indicators and evidence-based national treatment guidelines in treatment planning. Topics of discussion: Epidemiology/Our Experience/EUS/Screening, Genetics, Pathology, Imaging, Management of Cystic Neoplasms, Surgical Updates, Updates in Medical Oncology.
This event is open to all health care providers to earn 5 AMA PRA Category 1 credits and 4.83 CEUs.
Cost is $50 for physicians, $20 for non-physicians. Registration is required by March 6. Click here to register, or contact Health Referral Services 860-545-1888 or Toll Free 1-800-545-7664. For more information, contact Ginelle McPherson at 860-545-4594 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr. Tolin, Anxiety Disorders Center Host Fourth Kristina Stahl Lecture
Dr. David Tolin and the Anxiety Disorders Center hosted more than 100 clinicians and other staff at the 4th Annual Kristina Stahl Lecture in Anxiety on Dec. 13.
The lecture featured Dr. Martin Antony, professor and chair of the Department of Psychology at Ryerson University in Toronto and director of Research Anxiety Treatment and Research Centre at St. Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton, Ontario. His address focused on the “Nature and Treatment of Perfectionism.”
Inspired by the work of Dr. Tolin and his staff, the lecture series is made possible by the generosity of Bill and Karin Stahl, who established the Kristina Stahl Fund for Anxiety in memory of their daughter. The purpose of the fund is to provide support for an annual lecture on the broad topic of anxiety disorders.
Drs. Croen and Fogel Join Palliative Medicine Consult Service
Two physicians have joined the Palliative Medicine Consult Service.
Dr. Joshua Croen
is a native of NY. He received his MD degree from SUNY Downstate in NY, his MPH from Emory University in Atlanta and completed his Internal Medicine residency and Palliative Medicine fellowship at North Shore- LIJ Medical Center. He is living in West Hartford with his wife, who is an Emergency Medicine physician, and their 1 year old son Parker. Dr. Croen will be working fulltime with the team.
Dr. Cathryn Fogel
has been on the Medical Staff in the Department of Anesthesiology for many years. She completed her undergraduate medical education at the University of Connecticut Health Center and, after a PGY1 year in Medicine at the same institution, completed her Anesthesiology residency at Hartford Hospital. Over the past 2 years she has completed a ‘mid-career fellowship’ with the Palliative Medicine Team and is board eligible in Palliative Medicine. She will continue her anesthesia practice part
time and will be with the team 2 days a week, generally Thursday and Friday.
Dr. Sharon Diamen has scaled back her schedule to three days a week but continues to be actively involved with the team. She will be devoting some of her effort over the next year to preparing for JCAHO certification of the Program, along with Colleen Mulkerin, Director of the Department of Palliative Medicine.
Hospital Hosts Male Leadership Program in the ERC With Omega Foundation
Hartford Hospital and the Omega Foundation of Hartford hosted The Greater Hartford Male Leadership Program Jan. 12 for a health and fitness event as part of the Take Charge of Your Health Series.
“Leadership in Health and Medicine for Youth and Parents” was held in the hospital Education Resource Center and featured seminars and tours of the hospital and the Center for Education, Simulation and Innovation.
The Greater Hartford Male Leadership Program is a city-wide mentoring program for young men aged 12 to 17 to help them develop leadership skills.
Hartford Hospital and the Omega Foundation, whose chairman is Harford Hospital Board Member Greg Jones, formed the Black Men’s Health Project, which, with the Take Charge of Your Health Series, offers a comprehensive approach to addressing health disparities among black men. The Project includes periodic discussions, health fairs and health screenings under the “Take Charge of Your Health” theme.
Doctors of Comedy: Sutay, Casey and Dell'Orfano Are Just Kidding Around
Just Kidding Around - A Night of Comedy will be held Friday, Jan. 25 at 8 p.m., featuring the funny and talented Dr. Jay Sutay, pediatrics; Dr. David Casey, clinical cardiology; Dr. Joe Dell’Orfano, cardiology; and
Angel Rentas, electrophysiology/arrhythmia services nurse practitioner.
The show will be at Nomads Adventure Quest, 60 Bidwell Rd., South WIndsor.
The show is brought to you by Hartford HealthCare Federal Credit Union. Tickets are $15 in advance, or $20 at the door. They are available at any branch of the credit union, or go to www.hhcu.org or 860-547-0027. Benefit CCMC.
Laura Kushner Named Director of Quality for Hartford Hospital
Laura Kushner, RN, MS, CPHQ, CSHA has joined Hartford Hospital as director of Quality.
Her most recent leadership role was at Barnes Jewish Hospital, a 1,200-bed, not-for-profit organization in St. Louis, where she was responsible for accreditation and regulatory activities; oversaw patient safety, quality of care and risk management; and facilitated the development of performance- improvement plans throughout the organization.
She will work closely with Pepper Sobieski as Pepper fully completes her transition to her role as the director of Quality for Hartford HealthCare.
Jan Ruderman Named Director of Tallwood Urology and Kidney Institute
Jan Ruderman has been named institute director of Hartford Hospital’s Tallwood Urology and Kidney Institute.
Dr. Steven Shichman, chair of the Tallwood Institute, will work with Ruderman on the development and implementation of this new institute.
This is the second patient-centered, disease-specific institute we have established at Hartford Hospital, following the July 1 launch of our Cancer Institute. The goal of such institutes is to create top-notch care that is seamless, responsive and convenient.
The Tallwood Urology and Kidney Institute, which was created by a $5 million gift from an anonymous donor, will provide comprehensive urological and kidney care with sub-specializations. Those include urologic oncology, robotic and laparoscopic surgery, endo-urology and stone disease, pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery, genitourinary reconstruction and male infertility, and reproductive medicine.
The Institute also will provide increased support and integration in the care of chronic kidney disease, kidney stone analysis and prevention, management of complex hypertension/high-blood pressure, and prevention of acute kidney injury in the complex-care hospitalized patient.
2013 HealthStream Annual Mandatory Assignments Are Loaded
The 2013 Mandatory HealthStream Assignments are now loaded. All Hartford Hospital, IOL, CMC, JH and ERN Employees (full time, part time and per diem) must complete this training no later than Sept. 30.
You may also have department specific courses that you are responsible for as well. Please keep checking your “MY Learning” page throughout the year for added assignments. You can also check with your manager for those.
Under the Department of Public Health and The Joint Commission compliance, employees will be placed under suspension without pay until tests are completed.
New this year: Employees who are required to do a yearly N95 Respirator Fit test will see their due date as their anniversary date of starting at the hospital. When you have completed all three steps, the assignment will automatically reset to the same month next year.
Billboards Thank Hartford Hospital for Supporting United Way
The United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut is honoring Hartford Hospital with billboards on I-84 and I-91 in downtown Hartford to thank us for being a year-round partner.
The billboard featuresa photo of three members of our United Way committee: Luis Tavares, UW board of directors; Susan Klein, UW chair; and Dr. Jack Greene, UW physician liaison.
The billboards will be up through January 27 and then posted again in March.
Board Member Greg Jones Named to State DPH Advisory Council
Hartford Hospital Board Member Gregory Jones is among 20 business leaders named to a state Department of Public Health Advisory Council that will inform the development of a statewide health improvement plan.
The council will identify priorities, policies, activities and interventions to create and sustain healthy conditions for Connecticut communities. The program is funded by the Prevention and Public Health Fund of the Affordable Care Act.
HH In the News
Hartford Courant, Jan. 10
Hospitals at or over capacity, patients being transferred to other facilities and restrictions on visitors — welcome to flu season, 2013.
"We have been very busy," Dr. Jack Ross,
director of infectious diseases at Hartford Hospital, said Thursday. "Yesterday, was one of our highest capacity days we've had." Ross said the hospital had "well over 800 patients" — more than the hospital has seen in years. Hospital officials said they've had to open more space to accommodate the additional patients.
wtnh news 8, Jan. 8
Gov. Dannel Malloy on Tuesday released the names of members of his commission to investigate and make recommendations on policies related to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown. Two of the 15 are from Hartford Hospital's IOL: Dr. Adrienne Bentman, director of the Adult Psychiatry Residency Program, and
Dr. Harold I. Schwartz: Chief Psychiatrist. A final report is to be issued in December.
CPTV/WNPR, Jan. 11
In the wake of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, lawmakers and advocates are taking a second look at the state's outpatient commitment laws. Connecticut is only one of six states that does not allow court ordered treatment for people suffering with mental illness that could be a danger to themselves or others.
Joining us by phone is Dr. Harold Schwartz, Psychiatrist-In-Chief at the Institute of Living and Vice-President of Behavioral Health, Hartford Hospital.
Hartford Courant, Jan. 14
A scholarship program that will give Hartford public school students up to $5,000 annually to help pay for college, starting with the Class of 2016, will be formally launched next week, school officials said.
Superintendent Christina Kishimoto first announced the $12 million Hartford Promise capital campaign last April during her inaugural state of the schools address. Mayor Pedro Segarra and Oz Griebel, president and CEO of MetroHartford Alliance, have supported Kishimoto's initiative, saying that an educated urban workforce is crucial for the region's economic development.
Ayer, Segarra, Griebel, state Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor, Hartford Hospital CEO Jeffrey Flaks and Robert Patricelli, chairman and CEO of Avon-based Women's Health USA, are among those expected to attend next week's announcement at Hartford Public High School.
WRCH, Jan. 13
This week on Rich Answers, Rev. Dr. Shelley Best interviews Lisa Graziano, the Survivorship Program Manager at Hartford Hospital’s The Helen & Harry Gray Cancer Center.
Topics in this week’s interview covers the Patient Survivorship Programs at The Helen & Harry Gray Cancer Center, adjusting your life and being proactive in your cancer treatment and the C.O.C.’s partnership with Hartford Hospital.
In the HHC System
New Britain Herald, Jan. 5
The Hospital of Central Connecticut’s division of cardiology now has a Women’s Heart Wellness Center specializing in cardiac care for women.
The first hospital in New England to be a founding member of the WomenHeart National Hospital Alliance, the hospital, starting Jan. 22, will offer a monthly peer-led support network for women with heart disease.
The center, an additional service of the cardiology division, is housed in the division and targets women’s cardiovascular health and care. Heart disease is the number one killer of women, according to HOCC cardiologist Heather Swales, M.D., center director.
My Record Journal, Jan. 14
In the days following the December shooting deaths of 20 children and six teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, media and police took a hard look at the mental health history of the gunman, Adam Lanza. Jeffrey Walter, president of Rushford Center,
a behavioral treatment center for people with mental health and substance abuse problems, said there are many interrelated issues in play in gun violence. What is first needed is increased awareness that reduces stigma, he said. He also agreed that the earlier treatment starts, the better.
“It’s not our normal way of responding to a crisis by working on the prevention side,” Walter said. “Unfortunately, when funding gets tight, the first money to go is crisis dollars. We need money in the front end which is prevention, intervention and identification.”
Dr. Craig Allen, chief medical officer at Rushford, pointed to study in Portland, Maine, that tracked early intervention and community education efforts that resulted in fewer diagnosed cases of schizophrenia than in other municipalities its size.
The social interaction helped. “In that setting with community awareness and people being open to people who might need help and giving them a place to get help,” Allen said.
Allen said he doesn’t support a national database of people with mental illness but supports efforts to identify high-risk people.
“I wouldn’t want to see discrimination against people with mental illness,” he said. “But you can identify a number of people in the population prone to violence.”
Health Care News In the Region
West Hartford News, Jan. 15
Connecticut fared second-worst in the country in the percentage of hospitals hit with federal penalties for selected quality-of-care measures and in the overall rate of loss of Medicare reimbursements associated with those penalties, new federal data shows.
In addition to the penalties on quality measures, 23 Connecticut hospitals lost Medicare funding because of high rates of readmitting patients within 30 days of a hospital stay. Four faced the maximum loss, a 1 percent reduction in funding: Griffin Hospital in Derby, the Hospital of St. Raphael (now part of Yale-New Haven), the Masonic Home and Hospital in Wallingford, and MidState Medical Center in Meriden.
Several hospitals fared well under the new system. Middlesex Hospital in Middletown received a .13 percent bonus on the quality measures and no readmissions penalty; Bridgeport, Danbury and St. Mary’s Hospital in Waterbury also received small bonuses for quality.
On readmissions, Middlesex was among seven hospitals that avoided penalties this year; the others are Hartford Hospital, Manchester Memorial Hospital, Rockville General Hospital, Sharon Hospital, William W. Backus Hospital in Norwich, and Windham Hospital.
But most hospitals that did well in preventing readmissions did not fare as well on the quality indicators. Hartford, Windham and Sharon all faced penalties of more than .3 percent on the quality measures.
Global Newswire, Jan. 14
Dr. Steven Schonholz, Director of the Comprehensive Breast Program at Noble Hospital, is one of the first physicians in the nation to make the BREVAGen(TM) predictive risk test available to his patients. Clinically validated, BREVAGen is the latest advance in assessing a woman's unique risk of developing non-familial or sporadic breast cancer.
Noble Hospital is a 97 bed community-based hospital and health center located in Westfield, Massachusetts.
Medicine Grand Rounds
Thursday, Jan. 24
Topic: Neurology/Epilepsy Center.
Presenter: Erika Schuyler, MD
Time/Location: 8 a.m., Gilman Auditorium
Neurosurgery Grand Rounds
Thursday, Jan. 24
Topic: Improving Outcome From Severe Head Injury
Presenter: Raj Narayan, MD, chair of Neurosurgery at Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine
Time/Location: 7:30 a.m., JB-118
Clinical Ethics Rounds
Tuesday, Jan. 29
The Hartford Hospital Ethics Committee invites all health care professionals to Clinical Ethics Rounds on Tuesday, Jan. 29 from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. in Gilman Auditorium.
A new policy "Conscientious Practice in Medical Futility Disputes" case study from Bliss 11I will be presented. Lunch will be provided. CMEs and CEUs are available for MDs, RNs and social workers.
Medicine Grand Rounds
Thursday, Jan. 31
Topic: Med-Path CPC
Presenter: Rashmi Bisla, MD
Time/Location: 8 a.m., Gilman Auditorium
Surgery Grand Rounds
Friday, Feb. 1
Topic: From Transplantation to Tissue Engineering
Presenter: Joseph Vacanti, MD, Harvard Medical School
Time/Location: 6:45 a.m., Gilman Auditorium
28th Annual Winter Medical Meeting, "Trends in Medicine and Surgery"
Vail Cascade Resort and Spa
Trends in Medicine and Surgery (TMS), the 28th annual winter medical meeting sponsored by the Department of Medical Education at Hartford Hospital, will be held at the Vail Cascade Resort and Spa, from March 9-16, 2013.
The meeting is open to all medical, nursing and allied health staff. CME credits will be awarded. For further information, please contact Dr. David Drezner at email@example.com, or Mary Moretti, Huntington-Hay Travel, at 860-678-1407 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For more coming events,
Hot Topics in Healthcare
Hospitals & Health Networks, Jan. 11
Electronic health records can help improve the quality of care that doctors are delivering, but not without a steady dose of assistance, according to a recently released study.
Researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College and the Primary Care Information Project found that results didn't come overnight, either, as primary practices needed both high levels of technical assistance and nearly a year of exposure to an EHR to start bolstering quality.
2007, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has been helping practices to adopt EHRs as part of the Primary Care Information Project. Thus far, more than 3,000 physicians in 600 practices have enrolled, equaling the largest community-based EHR implementation project. A key component, according to the study, was continued on-site technical assistance including everything from troubleshooting to improving the health of a population of patients, interfacing the patient registry and
generating quality reports.
Voices Of Our Patients
Kudos To All The Staff
I have always received excellent care at
The doctors have diagnosed and corrected
my heart problem, and after my stay at
Hartford Hospital, I am doing quite well.
The nursing staff is very friendly, caring
I think Hartford
Hospital is a great facility and I am
happy to support it.
The Seymour Street Journal (SSJ) has been developed to communicate key messages pertinent to our hospital's physicians. It will keep you informed and up-to-date on hospital, network, and health care news in a concise, convenient format. The SSJ will be sent to your preferred e-mail address every other Sunday. Back
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For any questions or suggestions, please contact Dr. Jeffry Nestler, Medical Staff President, at (860) 836-7313.