Sharks Foundation to fund major transformation of VMC community clinic

Sharks FoundationThe Sharks may raise the Stanley Cup this June and celebrate San Jose’s first-ever major sports championship, but months earlier, the Sharks Foundation are prepared to raise something else: Hope.

In partnership with the VMC Foundation, the Sharks Foundation has made an unprecedented commitment to transform the pediatric clinic at a VMC health center in east San Jose into a Sharks-infused environment that will promote wellness, healthy eating, and physical activity. The center will be rededicated as the San Jose Sharks Pediatric Clinic at VHC Tully after a nearly $100,000 transformation from the Sharks Foundation. The public unveiling will take place in early 2012.

The funds will be used to overhaul the waiting area and exam rooms with Sharks-centric play and learning areas. Custom made graphics featuring the Sharks players and mascot will also promote important health messages created by VMC staff, encouraging kids to eat vegetables, drink water instead of sugar-based drinks, and get their vaccinations.

We are thrilled to partner with the VMC Foundation on this project. Making sure that all children in this community have access to the healthcare they need is a priority of the Sharks. This project will help make sure that happens. ~ Jeff Cafuir, Sharks Foundation manager

VHC Tully is one of VMC’s largest community clinics, providing primary care to nearly 6,000 low-income children per month, regardless of ability to pay. It is part of a county-wide network of clinics operated by VMC that see nearly 1,000,000 patient visits each year. The clinics provide low-income communities with essential access to regular, preventative healthcare. For children, this is especially important. From immunizations to counseling on healthy eating and weight loss, Valley Health Centers are the foundation of the safety net for children in this community.

Missing check-ups, or avoiding the doctor altogether, is a challenge that health advocates face in many low-income communities. Santa Clara County is no exception. With nearly a third of all low-income children in this community at-risk for obesity related illness, and with the high levels of whooping cough and tuberculosis, among other contagious diseases, access to primary care at VHC Tully is crucial to their long-term health.

VHC Tully Clinic Director Carolyn Scaglione, R.N. hopes that the newly designed center will encourage more parents to bring their kids in for routine check-ups and vaccinations.

“It’s going to make our clinic a lot more exciting for kids and parents,” she said. “We are thrilled that the Sharks Foundation is making this investment with us. We feel very fortunate to have them as partners.”

General Surgical Teaching Excellence

VMC has long been an official teaching hospital of the Stanford University School of Medicine. And now, according to Stanford General Surgery Residents, it’s also their favorite.

Dr. Gregg Adams, Chief of Surgery at VMC announced today that Santa Clara Valley Medical Center has received the “Best Service” Award by the 2011 General Surgery Residents at Stanford. Interns, Second-Year Residents and Fourth-Year Residents all gave VMC top honors, after rotations that included stints at Kaiser, Stanford Medical Center, Lucille Packard and the VA.

The General Surgery Training Program at VMC is headed up by Dr. Adella Garland and Dr. Peter Cahill. Thanks to their work and others, VMC is the largest teaching hospital in the South Bay, having trained a quarter of all practicing physicians in Santa Clara County. It’s just another way that VMC benefits all residents of this valley, regardless of where they normally receive their healthcare.

VMC Nurse wins Healthcare Hero Award

At a ceremony this morning, the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal named Linda Richards, R.N. as a 2011 “Healthcare Hero.” Linda serves as Program Director for the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center Sexual Assault Response Team (SART). She was the only nurse to receive an award.

The VMC Foundation salutes Linda and all SART staff for the tireless and essential care they provide for the victims of sexual assault.

Read more about the event from the Business Journal here.

TechCrunch profiles eLEGS at VMC

Great news out of Omaha, Nebraska today – the VMC Rehabilitation Center and Burn Center received 5-Star quality awards from PRC (Professional Research Consultants). PRC is an industry leader in healthcare quality data management, working with over 200 of America’s top hospitals.

The awards recognized inpatient services in the Rehab and Burn centers for Overall Quality of Care. These awards are based on the percentage of patients who rate the inpatient unit Excellent for the overall quality of care question. VMC needed to finish in the 90th percentile of hospitals surveyed nationally to win these awards.

We salute the amazing staff of the VMC Rehab and Burn Units. It’s one thing to be a hospital open to all regardless of ability to pay – but quite another to offer world-class care for those inside. At VMC, we do both.

The Great VMC Earthquake of 1906

VMC post 1906 earthquake105 years ago today, the Great San Francisco Earthquake nearly destroyed the hospital now known as Santa Clara Valley Medical Center. The damage, as you can see from the photograph, was extensive.

Fortunately, VMC already has a jump on the next big one. Construction of a new, seismically-sound hospital wing (replacing buildings not quite as old as 1906) is well underway, set to open in 2014.

Check out our progress with some great pictures on Flickr.

VMC Among “America’s Best Hospitals”

Silicon Valley is home to some of America’s best hospitals. So when the competition is this tough, there is no shame in taking the silver. In U.S. News and World Report just released “America’s Best Hospitals” annual report, VMC was ranked second only to Stanford for best hospitals in the San Jose Metro Area. VMC was specifically recognized for “high performing specialties” in Ear, Nose and Throat, Gynecology, kidney disorders and rehabilitation care.

Rankings aren’t everything, of course. But the recognition is well deserved. VMC and Stanford, of course, share a long-established bond. Together, both hospitals operate Santa Clara County’s only top level trauma centers. VMC is an official teaching hospital of the Stanford University School of Medicine, and numerous VMC physicians also serve on the Stanford faculty.

To see the report, check here.

History made at VMC’s Flag Dedication Ceremony

History was made yesterday at Valley Medical Center.

In a moving ceremony Monday morning VMC’s new flagpoles, installed as a result of 2008’s Measure A, were commissioned and dedicated. The Stars and Stripes, California State Flag and POW-MIA flag are now flying proudly in front of the main hospital thanks to our own VMC Color Guard, Veteran Marines all, from VMC’s Protective Services Department. No ceremony like it had ever taken place before.

VMC Foundation Executive Director Chris Wilder posted his thoughts, and a moving speech from Colonel William Peacock, on his blog yesterday. To read Chris’ full article, click here:

“New VMC” is really taking shape!

Just a quick look at the framing of the New Valley Medical Center. The team from URS, Turner and all have been working very fast, with the benefit of great weather this month, to build our new, state-of-the-art hospital. We should see the last piece of steel in place by next week, giving us the complete “skeleton” of what will surely be the finest public hospital in the nation.
Okay, I’m a little biased, but it’s going to be amazing. I’ll write more about it soon, including the important part: What will go on inside when it’s done, two years from now?

Welcome to the new Valley Health Center Milpitas!

Halloween came a day early this year for the City of Milpitas, with the Grand Opening celebration of our new Valley Health Center…and what a day it was!

Hundreds of families packed the new three-story, 60,000 square foot facility to enjoy arts and crafts, health screenings, hula hoop contests, safety classes and healthy food…none of which would have been possible without the sponsorship of Kaiser, Valley Health Plan, the Public Health Department and Allied Waste (and your very own VMC Foundation, of course).

VHC Milpitas is truly something to be proud of. The clinic offers care in pediatrics, OBGYN, family medicine, allergy clinic, the VMC Foundation-supported Pediatric Healthy Lifestyle Center, and so much more.
Perhaps the biggest hero of the day was County Supervisor Dave Cortese, whose idea it was to have a huge community party rather than a plain ol’ “ribbon cutting”. I got to emcee the program which included remarks by Supervisor Cortese, County CEO Dr. Jeff Smith, Milpitas Mayor Bob Livengood and Doctors Marcie Levine and Dan Delgado. Ashley Roybal from Congressman Honda’s office was there to present a commendation.
Halloween should be full of surprises. At around 1pm, we were, uh, treated to one.
FIRE ALARM! Everyone exit the building!
Thing is, you pack that many kids into a new health center, and one of them is bound to double-dog-dare another to pull the red lever. Either that, or it could have been a San Jose State University Recreation/Leisure Studies major. I was one of those once, and was taught that the best time to suspend a recreational activity is at the peak of its participants’ enjoyment.

Special thanks to Michael Elliott and Andy Groggel of the VMC Foundation for deftly dealing with this unexpected “challenge”…and of course to the Health Center staff. The good news is they will NEVER have to evacuate that many people from the clinic again. Ever.

I guess the moral of the story is that, when the question is “trick or treat?”, sometimes the answer is “both!” Anyway, congratulations VHC Milpitas and to the community it serves!

How is the “New VMC” coming along?

I just learned about a job that might be as fun and exciting as mine: Aerial photography! Enjoy the series of photos taken by the 111th Aerial Photography Squadron of the construction zone at VMC – your 2008 Measure A dollars hard at work!

To view the series, click here…