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ORMC and CRMC cited for stroke care

WALLKILL/HARRIS (July 6) – Orange Regional Medical Center (ORMC) and Catskill Regional Medical Center (CRMC) have received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Quality Achievement Award, and Target: Stroke Honor Roll Elite. The award recognizes the hospital’s commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.

The two hospitals, both members of the member of the Greater Hudson Valley Health System, were cited for meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients. This included evaluation of the proper use of medications and other stroke treatments aligned with the most up-to-date, evidence-based guidelines, all toward the goal of improving recovery time and reducing the risk of death and disability for stroke patients. Before discharge, patients receive education on managing their health, and a follow-up visit is scheduled.

“Treatment within three hours of presenting symptoms of a stroke, not only provide the best chance for survival, incurs less disability after a stroke,” said Medical Director of Orange Regional’s Stroke Center, Olga Fishman, MD. “To receive this recognition from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, shines a spotlight on the hard work of our team and Orange Regional’s commitment to providing immediate high-quality care for stroke patients.”

A stroke is the fifth leading cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States. On average, someone in the U.S. suffers a stroke every 40 seconds and nearly 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year. To better prepare people to respond to a stroke in a timely manner and with appropriate action, Orange Regional supports using the FAST acronym to educate the public on the signs and symptoms of stroke:

  • F = Face Drooping
  • A = Arm Weakness
  • S = Speech Difficulty
  • T = Time to call 911

The acronym can help people remember and recognize the general signs and symptoms of a stroke, including weakness or numbness on one side, facial drooping, slurred or irregular speaking, vision loss and severe headache or dizziness. The sooner symptoms are recognized, the sooner medical help can be sought.


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Randi Port with her award

Dutchess County Emergency Medical Services Council awards presented  

VERBANK (June 28) - The Dutchess County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Council presented special recognition for EMS providers, EMS agencies and local hospital staff on Wednesday night at the Union Vale Fire Department and Rescue Squad Station No. 1 in Verbank. The annual awards highlight the important role of first responders and the invaluable and critical services these men and women provide to the community. Dutchess County Public Safety Dispatcher Randi Port was named as the EMS Communications Specialist of the Year.

 “Congratulations to all of this year’s award recipients, especially our own, Randi Port,” said County Executive Marc Molinaro. The invaluable services Ms. Port and her colleagues provide cannot be recognized often enough. We are grateful for the dedication these men and women show on a daily basis to their community and Dutchess County.”

Ms. Port was selected as EMS Communications Specialist of the Year for her handling of an incident involving a call concerning a 53-year-old who was unresponsive and not breathing. By using the training she received as an emergency medical dispatcher, she instructed a bystander over the phone on how to assess the patient and successfully provide CPR, resulting in the patient arriving at the hospital with a pulse and breathing.

This year’s recipients of the Dutchess County EMS Council Awards include:

  • Basic Life Support Provider of the Year - Posthumously
    Michael Murphy, EMTB, Union Vale Rescue Squad
  • Basic Life Support Provider of the Year
    Jason Ryan, EMTB, LaGrange Fire District
  • Advanced Life Support Provider of the Year
    Nate Plambeck, EMTP, LaGrange Fire District
  • EMS Agency of the Year
    Roosevelt Fire District – Rescue Squad
  • EMS Educator of Excellence
    NYS Trooper Stephanie Higgins, NYS Police
  • EMS Communications Specialist of the Year
    Randi Port, EMTP, Dutchess County Dept. of Emergency Response
  • Excellence in EMS Quality and Safety
    Air Methods – Life Net Air 2
  • Registered Professional Nurse of Excellence
    Lisa Walz, RN, MidHudson Regional Hospital
  • Physician of Excellence
    Alexis Johnson, MD, MidHudson Regional Hospital


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Dr. Kazbay

Catskill Regional Medical Group adds gastroenterology to its growing services

HARRIS (June 26) - Catskill Regional Medical Group now offers Gastroenterology services as part of its specialty care.

The Gastroenterology Department at Catskill Regional Medical Group led by Kasim Kazbay, MD has physicians and healthcare providers who are trained to investigate the digestive system and diagnose its disorders. Gastroenterologists perform a number of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures including colonoscopy, endoscopy, endoscopic retrograde cholangiancreatography (ERCP), endoscopic ultrasound and liver biopsy. 

Kasim Kazbay, MD, is Board-certified in Gastroenterology and Hepatology. He earned his medical degree from Ege University Medical School in Izmir, Turkey and his Ph.D in Microbiology and immunology from Mount Sinai Medical School in New York, NY. Dr. Kazbay completed his Residency in Internal Medicine at New York University and a Fellowship in Gastroenterology at the Medical University of South Carolina.

Dr. Kazbay treats all liver and alimentary tract diseases. He performs all diagnostic and therapeutic procedures involving esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD), Colonoscopy and ERCP. 

Catskill Regional Medical Group (CRMG) is part of the Greater Hudson Valley Health System, comprised of the well-established and highly regarded Orange Regional Medical Center and Catskill Regional Medical Center. The Greater Hudson Valley Health System has been recognized by the Ethisphere Institute as one of the 2018 World’s Most Ethical Companies™.

For more information including office hours, visit


Catskill Regional Medical Center’s R.I.S.E. Program Seeks Volunteers

HARRIS (June 18) – The R.I.S.E. - Rape Intervention Services and Education Program - at Catskill Regional Medical Center is seeking volunteers. Volunteer training starts on Monday, June 25, 2018 from 5:00p.m. to 8:00p.m.

“We welcome anyone who has a few hours a month to dedicate,” said RISE Program Manager Debbie O’Malley. “We are looking for creative self-starters that can work independently and be a supportive resource.”

RISE volunteer activities vary depending on the individuals’ interests. Volunteers may choose from a wide variety of RISE needs including, but not limited to, assisting at community events, facilitating support groups, hotline coverage, research, and some clerical duties.

The RISE program of Sullivan County, advocates for residents of all ages who are or have been a victim of sexual violence. RISE provides individual and group counseling, and advocacy and accompaniment services to the emergency department, police station, and court appearances. Counseling and prevention education is offered to children at local schools. The Program maintains a 24-hour rape and sexual assault hotline by dialing 845-791-9595. Trained staff and volunteers provide callers with emergency crisis intervention, crisis counseling as well as information and referrals. The program also provides free educational and or training programs to schools, community and professional organizations. RISE relies heavily on volunteer help.

If you are interested in volunteering or would like more information on services offered, please contact the RISE office at 845-794-3300, ext. 2440 or e-mail


Orange Regional Medical Center and NeighboRx Pharmacy partner to offer Meds to Beds service

TOWN OF WALLKILL (June 18) - Orange Regional Medical Center announces that it has partnered with NeighboRx Pharmacy, which operates within Orange Regional’s Outpatient Building, to offer a Meds to Beds service for inpatients. NeighboRx Pharmacy has also expanded its hours to include Sundays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“The Meds-to-Beds Program consists of our pharmacy hand-delivering prescriptions to hospital patients' bedsides before they are discharged,” said NeighboRx Pharmacy Owner and Pharmacist Rory Garland. “This ensures they leave with their medication in hand before leaving the hospital,”

Pharmacy staff is also available to answer any patient questions or concerns before their discharge and can also deliver to the patient’s home for future re-fills to ensure continued compliance of their medications. 

“Orange Regional continues to show its commitment to our patients and our community by providing high quality pharmacy services within our facility,” said Greater Hudson Valley Health System Vice President of Information Technology & Chief Information Officer, Brian Tew.  “This pharmacy is a tremendous asset for our patients and employees. It is a welcomed addition to our campus because it delivers an important healthcare service to our patients by making the transition from hospital to home easier.”

The pharmacy is a convenient option for patients, the general public and Medical Center staff. It offers a full range of prescription medication services, including personalized pharmacist services. The pharmacy also carries over-the-counter medications and medical supplies including walkers and rollators; diabetic supplies; wheelchairs; knee; arm; wrist and ankle braces; crutches; bath and safety supplies.

The pharmacy accepts most major prescription drug plans and is staffed by professional registered pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. It is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and now on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Free prescription delivery in Middletown and surrounding areas is also available.

All patients may access pharmacy services by calling (845) 333-7250 or by visiting  


WMCHealth’s Heart & Vascular Institute opens new Kingston office

KINGSTON (June 18) - The Heart & Vascular Institute of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth) has a new office location at network affiliate HealthAlliance Hospital: Mary’s Avenue Campus, welcoming longtime Kingston cardiologists Ellis W. Lader, MD, and Aneta D. Dimova, MD, to the Institute’s team.

The Heart & Vascular Institute now occupies the offices of the former Mid-Valley Cardiology practice, at 111 Mary’s Ave. in Kingston, on the Mary’s Avenue Campus, providing a seamless transition for patients previously cared for by Drs. Lader and Dimova at the same location. Drs. Lader and Dimova practiced at Mid-Valley Cardiology for more than 20 years.

Drs. Lader and Dimova see adult patients in Kingston for a wide range of conditions, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart valve disease, coronary artery disease, acute coronary syndrome, angina, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, heart failure, cardiac arrhythmia, valvular heart disease and congenital heart disease.

Patients also benefit from access to a broad range of advanced cardiovascular services, and many other disciplines, at WMCHealth’s flagship Westchester Medical Center and at Good Samaritan Hospital in Suffern, another member of WMCHealth.

“We are pleased to welcome the expertise of Drs. Lader and Dimova to WMCHealth’s Heart & Vascular Institute,” said Julio A. Panza, MD, Chief of Cardiology at WMCHealth. “Kingston-area patients now have access to the broadest possible range of solutions from a team of world-class physicians, supported by some of the most highly skilled and experienced nurses and technicians in the region. WMCHealth’s Heart & Vascular Institute is committed to providing the highest-quality comprehensive cardiovascular care and expertise to residents of the Hudson Valley, close to home, in the communities where they live.”

Drs. Lader and Dimova see patients at the new offices of WMCHealth’s Heart & Vascular Institute, 111 Mary’s Ave., Suite 3, in Kingston. The office phone number is 845-339-3663.


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L-R: Executive Director, GHVHS Medical Group, Jerry Dunlavey; CRMG
Medical Director, Dr. Lauren Roman; GHVHS President and CEO,
Scott Batulis; CRMC Chief Executive Officer, Jonathan Schiller;
CRMG Practice Administrator, Debra Martin.

Catskill Regional Medical Group’s Primary Care / Urgent Care Office in Thompson celebrates first anniversary

TOWN OF THOMPSON (May 31) - Catskill Regional Medical Group’s (CRMG) Primary Care / Urgent Care office celebrated its first anniversary at 38 Concord Road, in Kiamesha, on Thursday, May 24.

The event, celebrated with staff and senior leadership included: Greater Hudson Valley Health System President and CEO, Scott Batulis; Catskill Regional Medical Center Chief Executive Officer, Jonathan Schiller; Executive Director of GHVHS Medical Group, Jerry Dunlavey; Catskill Regional Medical Group Medical Director, Dr. Lauren Roman and Catskill Regional Medical Group Practice Administrator, Debra Martin. Among the year one highlights,  the Monticello practice helped patients with 11,254 Urgent Care and 3,171 Primary Care visits  exceeding the target goal

“We are pleased to add that due to the success of this location additional personnel were hired to keep up with the demand for service” said CRMG Medical Director of Primary Care, Dr. Lauren Roman. “We appreciate the community’s warm welcome and support.”

As “paper” is the one-year milestone for anniversaries, CRMG branded notebooks were given out as ‘thank you’ gifts and employees celebrated with a commemorative cake and photo slideshow presentation.

Catskill Regional Medical Group (CRMG) is part of the Greater Hudson Valley Health System, comprised of the well-established and highly regarded Orange Regional Medical Center and Catskill Regional Medical Center.


WMC expands teletrauma services in Ulster and Delaware Counties

VALHALLA (May 17) – Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth) has expanded its telemedicine program to include a teletrauma service at the network’s Kingston and Margaretville hospitals, bringing the immediate care that traumatic injuries require to communities where access to Level I trauma care is limited.

The teletrauma program connects providers at HealthAlliance Hospital: Broadway Campus in Kingston and Margaretville Hospital in Margaretville, both members of WMCHealth, with the advanced care trauma expertise of specialists at WMCHealth’s flagship Westchester Medical Center and member Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital in Valhalla. Both Valhalla hospitals are home to Level I trauma centers verified by the American College of Surgeons (ACOS). A Level I trauma center provides the highest level of care to trauma patients.

The teletrauma technology is already in use at network affiliate MidHudson Regional Hospital in Poughkeepsie, the Hudson Valley’s first and only ACOS-verified Level II trauma center.

Through the teletrauma program, an emergency department physician or other acute care clinician in Kingston or Margaretville can initiate a video connection with the trauma team in Valhalla, allowing the specialist there to see the patient and discuss the patient’s immediate needs with the bedside team. The remote trauma team can advise on the severity of the patient’s condition and determine with the local team whether the patient would best be treated where they are or transferred to Westchester Medical Center or Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. The Level I trauma teams serve as a complement to -- not a replacement for -- the care provided by the local hospital.

“Trauma care follows the rule of the golden hour, with interventions in the first hour after a traumatic injury being the most critical for the patient,” said Rifat Latifi, MD, Director of Surgery and Chief of General Surgery at WMCHealth, who oversees the network’s trauma and general surgery programs across the Hudson Valley. “This program enables our trauma specialists to be involved through telepresence in the patients’ care and help provide the most appropriate care from the moment they reach the emergency department and offer the best chances for a successful outcome. Neither the patient nor the provider will ever be alone in case of trauma or emergency. Highly trained specialists will be telepresent at all times at a moment’s notice.”

The unique technology enables specialists to share imaging, test results and other medical information securely from one location to another. In addition, trauma specialists at the Level I centers can easily talk directly with doctors, nurses, patients and family members at the bedside in Kingston and Margaretville.

The teletrauma program joins existing telemedicine services already providing the highest level of advanced care for patients in communities across the Hudson Valley, including eICU, ePsychiatry, eTrauma, eStroke, eDermatology and STAT mobile ICU in network ambulances.

The eHealth program has plans to further expand its telemedicine service offerings to additional WMCHealth locations around the Hudson Valley in the coming months.


Orange Regional Medical Center starts Alzheimer’s support group

MIDDLETOWN (May 17) – Orange Regional Medical Center has created a new support group for caregivers, family and friends of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. The group will begin meeting this month.

The meetings, which are free to attend, will be scheduled on the fourth Tuesday of each month. The first meeting will begin at 2 p.m., Tuesday, May 22. The one-hour sessions will be at Orange Regional’s main campus, located at 707 East Main Street in Middletown, NY, in the Outpatient Building in Conference Room 3.

Alzheimer’s disease is life-changing for both those who are diagnosed and those close to them. Orange Regional’s Alzheimer’s Support Group provides a place to connect with others who truly understand.

“A setting where people can talk through their challenges, exchange ideas and provide possible solutions is invaluable for caregivers, family and friends of patients,” said Orange Regional Medical Center’s Palliative Care Patient Navigator, Eileen Schmidt, LCSW, ACHP-SW.

There is no need to register for this program. For more information, visit, or contact Eileen Schmidt at (845) 741-3607.


Arlington High School wins “Be Tick Free!” contest

POUGHKEEPSIE (May 17) - The Dutchess County Tick Task Force, proclaimed May as Tick-borne Disease Awareness Month

Full details on our Education Page


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Grover M. Hermann Hospital

Grover Hermann Hospital Named one of the top 20 critical access hospitals in the country for a second year

HARRIS (May 11) - Catskill Regional Medical Center’s Grover M. Hermann Hospital in Callicoon, NY has been named one of the Top 20 Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) in the country for Quality. This is the second year in a row that the Hospital has received this designation from the National Rural Health Association (NRHA). Grover M. Hermann Hospital scored best among critical access hospitals, as determined by The Chartis Center for Rural Health.

“Quality healthcare for every patient is our primary goal every day. Earning this designation ensures that our staff is backing up its commitment to building a healthier community,” said Rolland Bojo, VP Patient Care Services and Chief Nursing Officer at Catskill Regional Medical Center and Administrator at Grover M. Hermann Hospital. “Catskill Regional Medical Center is proud of the efforts of the physicians, nurses and staff at Grover M. Hermann; each of whom has contributed to this achievement.”

Each hospital recognized by the NRHA has achieved success in overall performance based on a composite rating from eight indices of strength: inpatient market share; outpatient market share, quality; outcomes; patient perspectives; costs; charges and financial stability. This group was selected from The Chartis Center for Rural Health’s 2018 Top 100 CAH list, which was released earlier this year.

Grover M. Hermann Hospital’s designation is based on a Quality index: A rating of hospital performance based on the percentile rank across the five categories of Hospital Compare Process of Care measures. The hospital will be recognized during an awards ceremony during NRHA’s Critical Access Hospital Conference in September in Kansas City, Mo.


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Dr. Geoffrey Brackett, Chairman of the SLCH Board of Trustees, honored

NEW YORK (May 9) - United Hospital Fund (UHF) presented Distinguished Trustee Awards to 26 trustees from New York metropolitan-area hospitals and health care organizations at a luncheon at Cipriani 42nd Street earlier this week. Among the recipients was Geoffrey Brackett, DPhil, Chairman of the St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital Board of Trustees. The honorees were recognized for their extraordinary leadership and service to hospitals, nursing homes, home care, and rehabilitation organizations throughout the five boroughs of New York City, Long Island, Westchester and Orange counties, and nearby New Jersey and Connecticut.

Dr. Brackett, Executive Vice President of Marist College has served on the SLCH BOT since 2011, taking on his current role as Chairman in 2017. Under Dr. Brackett’s leadership as Board Chair, SLCH’s partnership with the Montefiore Health System was finalized in early 2018. 

“Dr. Brackett has a true understanding of healthcare reform and how this community hospital must transform to become a sustainable, thriving healthcare provider for many years to come,” said Joan Cusack-McGuirk, SLCH President and CEO. “He has been instrumental in bringing SLCH into the next era of healthcare delivery.”

This year’s Tribute featured remarks from Thomas H. Lee, MD, Chief Medical Officer of Press Ganey, a health care consulting firm supporting health care providers in understanding and improving the entire patient experience. Dr. Lee is professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and professor of health policy and management at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. His remarks drew on his professional experiences and his own role as a health system trustee.

“The honorees combine their unique expertise with an acute awareness of local needs in their service to local communities,” said Dr. Shih. “We at United Hospital Fund are thrilled to once again have the opportunity to pay tribute to the 2018 Distinguished Trustees who demonstrate a profound dedication to their organizations, and to the metropolitan region’s health care system.” 






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