DCH News

Awards & Recognitions

Driscoll surgeon addresses causes of obesity, offers weight-loss strategies in new book

October 29, 2013
Emran
Emran
CORPUS CHRISTI - Mohammad A. Emran, MD, board-certified general and pediatric surgeon at Driscoll Children's Hospital, recently authored a book to help his patients and their families in their everyday battle against obesity. In "Fast-Track Your Health," Dr. Emran offers advice and insight to those who've had unsuccessful weight-loss attempts or are looking for the knowledge that can lead them to success.

"Obesity is one of the biggest healthcare problems in this country, and it affects every system in the body," Dr. Emran said. "There are a lot of myths and bad influences out there that are working against people trying to live healthier lives. My book focuses on what causes obesity and offers strategies so people can succeed."

Dr. Emran's book, to be released in November, details his personal experiences with patients and with his own family to illustrate the techniques for effective weight loss. They include:

Identifying the common factors shared by people who have succeeded in losing weight.
Avoiding the common difficulties that can prevent weight loss.
Discovering why it's best not to focus on any specific diet or type of exercise.
Organizing their process of weight loss and weight maintenance.
Maintaining hope despite the problems they might have previously experienced.

Dr. Emran is the director of Driscoll Children's Hospital's Adolescent Weight Management Program. He is also the founder of the not-for-profit SpringCure Foundation (www.springcurefoundation.com), which is committed to eliminating childhood obesity and improving childhood nutrition and fitness. Dr. Emran has years of experience addressing the challenges of excess weight and the common failure of weight-loss efforts, and he has helped many patients by teaching them the essential factors that lead to lasting success.

Driscoll study on human bocavirus receives international attention

October 24, 2013
Dr. Na Liu presented the poster, 'Hospital Course and Risk Factors in South Texas Children Infected with Human Bocavirus (HBoV),' Oct. 4 in San Francisco.
Dr. Na Liu presented the poster, 'Hospital Course and Risk Factors in South Texas Children Infected with Human Bocavirus (HBoV),' Oct. 4 in San Francisco.
CORPUS CHRISTI - A study by Driscoll Children's Hospital resident physicians Na Liu, MD, and Karla Araujo, MD, laboratory managers Kevin Richman, BS, MT, and Charles Raven, BS, MT, and Infectious Diseases director Jaime Fergie, MD, was recently presented at a meeting of scientists from around the world. Dr. Liu presented "Hospital Course and Risk Factors in South Texas Children Infected with Human Bocavirus (HBoV)," on a poster Oct. 4 in San Francisco during IDWeek, a joint international meeting of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America, the HIV Medicine Association and the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society.

The study is significant because the human bocavirus in children is just beginning to be understood, said Dr. Fergie, a Fellow of the IDSA.

"The human bocavirus is a newly recognized respiratory pathogen that was discovered in 2005. It is the fifth most frequent cause of respiratory infection in children and it can cause disease throughout the year, although most infection occurs during the fall and winter. Children (in the study) developed symptoms of a common cold but some developed more severe infections such as bronchiolitis or pneumonia that required hospitalization."

Driscoll resident receives Maternal and Child Health Scholarship

October 22, 2013
Adepoju
Adepoju
CORPUS CHRISTI - Oluwarotimi "Timi" Adepoju, MD, a second-year resident physician at Driscoll Children's Hospital, is one of 23 residents chosen to receive the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) 2013 Maternal and Child Health Scholarship. The $500 scholarship enables Dr. Adepoju to attend the AAP's National Conference and Exhibition Oct. 26-29, 2013, in Orlando, where he will attend medical education sessions on maternal and child health issues.

Driscoll Children's Hospital earns 2013 Path to Excellence award for its commitment to improving the patient experience

October 07, 2013
Mauricio Flores, MD, endocrinologist at Driscoll Children's Hospital, and Evelyn Ferrer, Driscoll director of Patient Relations, accept the 2013 Path to Excellence award Sept. 22 in Baltimore.
Mauricio Flores, MD, endocrinologist at Driscoll Children's Hospital, and Evelyn Ferrer, Driscoll director of Patient Relations, accept the 2013 Path to Excellence award Sept. 22 in Baltimore.
CORPUS CHRISTI - Driscoll Children's Hospital has been selected by National Research Corporation as a recipient of the 2013 Path to Excellence award. Driscoll was recognized at the 19th Annual International Patient-Centered Care Symposium in Baltimore on Sept. 22.

National Research selected Path to Excellence award recipients based on their achievement within categories that patients have identified as being most important to the quality of their care. The award is only bestowed upon those organizations that are ranked by patients as being a top performer in one of the following categories: Rate Hospital, Specialty Hospital: Rank Hospital, Children's Hospital: Overall Rating, Adult: Would Recommend Doctor's Office, Pediatric: Would Recommend Doctor's Office, Catalyst Improvement Planner Champion and Most Improved Client.

The winners were selected from the extensive database of National Research hospital customers for their performance over the last four quarters. Driscoll was a top-ranked children's hospital in the Most Improved: Rate Hospital category.

"National Research congratulates Driscoll Children's Hospital for their outstanding achievements," said Susan Henricks, president and chief operating officer of National Research. "We understand that driving improvement changes across an organization takes an incredible amount of resources and dedication - and Driscoll has done exactly that. They are committed to providing the best healthcare possible for their patients and families."

As a 2013 award recipient, Driscoll is among a select group of healthcare innovators leading the way on the path to patient-centered care.

"By partnering with National Research and utilizing its measurement and quality improvement solutions, we have been able to implement changes and make the necessary adjustments to improve the patient and family care," said Evelyn Ferrer, Driscoll director of Patient Relations. "This improvement also gives patients and families the trust and confidence they deserve when seeking the right healthcare provider."


Harper recognized for contributions to child abuse pediatrics

August 27, 2013
Harper
Harper
CORPUS CHRISTI - The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has recognized Nancy Harper, MD, FAAP, medical director of the Child Abuse Resource and Evaluation (CARE) Team at Driscoll Children's Hospital, for her participation as a member of the planning group for PREP®: CAP An Update of Child Abuse Pediatrics, held in Norfolk, Va., July 11-14, 2013.

A continuing medical education activity, PREP®: CAP is a comprehensive update of child abuse pediatrics that emphasizes the process of evidence-based clinical decision-making and focuses on the scientific basis for the clinical practice of pediatric medicine. Member contributions to this educational effort are recognized as a gift to the improvement of care for infants, children and adolescents.

"The Academy is a top provider of quality Pediatric Continuing Medical Education," said Robert Perelman, MD, FAAP, director of the AAP Department of Education. "It is through the continued commitment of outstanding members, like Dr. Harper, that enables the Academy to accomplish the excellence in education that has become our goal of achievement."

Hollywood-themed celebration planned for Driscoll nurses

May 08, 2013
Event is in conjunction with National Nurses Week, May 6-12

CORPUS CHRISTI - National Nurses Week is May 6-12, and Driscoll Children's Hospital is marking the occasion with a celebration tomorrow for its more than 500 nurses.

"This is a way for us to recognize our nurses for all the work they do," said Driscoll's Jo Ann Gamez, RN, BSN, CCRN, chair of the celebration committee. "Nurses may not realize how much they're appreciated by patients, families, physicians and the community. They have come a long way from the Florence Nightingale days."

May 6 is also known as National Nurses Day, and May 12 is the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing.

Driscoll's auditorium will be decorated in a Hollywood theme for the celebration, with music provided by a DJ and photo props for the nurses. They'll be treated to dinner and a special performance by students from John Paul II High School. Speakers will include Steve Woerner, Driscoll's president and chief executive officer, Patricia Carr, assistant vice president of Nursing Operations, and the parent of a former Driscoll patient.

What: National Nurses Week celebration
When: 5 p.m. Thursday, May 9
Where: Driscoll Children's Hospital auditorium, 3533 S. Alameda St.

Joyal promoted to NICU director at Driscoll

March 04, 2013
Joyal
Joyal
CORPUS CHRISTI - Christopher Joyal, RN, BSN, CPN, has been promoted to director of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Driscoll Children's Hospital. He previously served as manager of Driscoll's Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU). Joyal has also worked in Driscoll's Transport Services Dept. and, as the PICU educator, he was instrumental in bringing best practice initiatives to the unit. He is a graduate of the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston.

In pursuit of excellence, Driscoll residents far outpace total pass rate for American Board of Pediatrics certification

December 20, 2012
CORPUS CHRISTI - Driscoll Children's Hospital is proud to announce that all of its graduating residents who took the latest American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) certification exam in general pediatrics passed on their first attempt, continuing a trend that surpasses the total annual pass rate. Certification through the exam, administered once a year in October, has one objective - to promote excellence in medical care for children and adolescents.

"ABP certification provides a standard of excellence by which the public can select pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists," according to the ABP. "Although certification is voluntary, nearly all qualified pediatricians seek this recognition."

The ABP certification pass rate for pediatric residents at Driscoll Children's Hospital for the past three years has been 98 percent, ranking them in the top 5 percent of the more than 200 pediatric residency programs in the country, said William Dirksen, MD, Driscoll chief of staff. In contrast, the total pass rate for candidates taking the ABP general pediatrics exam in 2009, 2010 and 2011 was 79.1 percent, 76.1 percent and 75.7 percent, respectively, according to the ABP.

The ABP certification exam is a one-day test given to physicians who have finished three years of pediatric residency training. Physicians must have a valid, unrestricted, permanent medical license to be eligible to sit for the test. Certification is valid for seven years after which physicians must recertify by taking the ABP's Program for Maintenance of Certification in Pediatrics recertification exam.

Here are some additional facts from the ABP:

The ABP has certified 77,328 diplomates in general pediatrics and 14,707 in pediatric subspecialties.

Among the pediatricians who take the ABP test, 66 percent go into general pediatric practice and 24 percent go into pediatric subspecialties.

An average of 3,007 pediatricians take the ABP exam every year. Of these, American medical graduates accounted for 82.5 percent and international medical graduates accounted for 17.5 percent. Gender-wise, 40 percent were males and 60 percent were females.

The total number of pediatric residents currently in training programs in the United States is 9,731.

The average age at the time of ABP certification for pediatricians is 32 years for American medical graduates and about 36 years for international medical graduates.

The success of Driscoll's residency program can be attributed largely to the hospital's governing board, administration, faculty and staff, all of whom are dedicated to fostering excellent pediatricians.

"I have been blessed to have the necessary support to create an environment where aspiring physicians can be trained to become the best pediatricians in the world," Dr. Dirksen said. "Driscoll faculty has been outstanding in their commitment to the teaching and mentoring of our residents."

Driscoll's Cottage Shop voted no. 1 among consignment stores

December 14, 2012
The Cottage Shop staff includes (left to right) Dot Van Burkleo, Rosemary Fischer, Mary Jo Slaughter, Lin Orser, Yen Doan, Susan Quiroz (manager),  Kathy Jenkin, Kelly Reynolds, Mathilde Schneider, Daniel Gunn and Sue Swanson.
The Cottage Shop staff includes (left to right) Dot Van Burkleo, Rosemary Fischer, Mary Jo Slaughter, Lin Orser, Yen Doan, Susan Quiroz (manager), Kathy Jenkin, Kelly Reynolds, Mathilde Schneider, Daniel Gunn and Sue Swanson.
CORPUS CHRISTI - Readers of the Corpus Christi Caller-Times recently voted the Cottage Shop at Driscoll Children's Hospital the no. 1 consignment store in the newspaper's 2012 Best of the Best competition. While many businesses pursue Best of the Best recognition every year, receiving the top title was a pleasant surprise for the Auxiliary to Driscoll Children's Hospital, who operates the Cottage Shop.

"The staff was super excited, proud and surprised," said Lizette Saenz, director of Volunteer Services at Driscoll. "They had no idea this was going to happen. The Cottage Shop has come a long way from its beginnings as a small room in the basement of the hospital to a brand new building with more than 1,300 square feet."

The Cottage Shop offers gently used and new merchandise at bargain prices, including men's, women's and children's clothing, toys, household items and collectibles. The store's first priority is to provide clothes and necessities to patients and their families who are in need, and 100 percent of the proceeds from sales go back to the hospital.

The store's success is due simply to a hardworking group of volunteers and staff, Saenz said.

"They give to the Cottage Shop with all their heart. The shop looks amazing and is always neat and organized, thanks to the leadership of the manager, Susan Quiroz."

The Cottage Shop accepts donations of new and gently used items. Store hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information, call (361) 694-5800.

Organ donors, their families honored at Driscoll ceremony

November 19, 2012
Dr. Karl Serrao, critical care intensivist, speaks to families of organ donors at a ceremony honoring them and their loved ones Nov. 10 at Driscoll Children's Hospital.
Dr. Karl Serrao, critical care intensivist, speaks to families of organ donors at a ceremony honoring them and their loved ones Nov. 10 at Driscoll Children's Hospital.
CORPUS CHRISTI - The families of children whose organs were donated so that others may live were honored at a poignant ceremony Nov. 10 at Driscoll Children's Hospital. More than 100 people, including families, Driscoll leaders, physicians and other healthcare professionals, gathered in the auditorium to commemorate the lives of the donors.

"It is essential to recognize these children who became organ donors and their families who allowed this gift to happen," said Karl Serrao, MD, critical care intensivist at Driscoll. "The donors have left a lasting and indelible legacy and we at Driscoll Children's Hospital want to celebrate with the families. These organ donors are heroes, as they are saving lives."

As of Nov. 14, 10 donors at Driscoll Children's Hospital have saved the lives of more than 40 other people, Dr. Serrao said.

This was Driscoll's second ceremony honoring organ donors and their families. In 2010, a ceremony was held to unveil the hospital's Organ Donor Wall, on which the names of the donors are inscribed on floating dandelion seeds. Dr. Serrao said he hopes to have an organ donor ceremony annually and raise awareness in the community about the importance of organ donation.

"We want to encourage everyone to be inspired by these children and their families to become a registered donor."

Those who wish to become organ donors can register at www.donatelifetexas.org, Dr. Serrao added.