December 4, 2018

Around the nation: A nurse preserves the heartbeats of deceased loved ones for grieving families

Daily Briefing

    Intermountain Medical Center nurse Lisa Beglarian said the mementos allow the family to have "at least one positive memory of their experience in [the] ICU," in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Alaska, New York, and Utah.  

    • Alaska: Providence Alaska Medical Center said a "massive earthquake" that affected Alaska on Friday did not interfere with the hospital's daily operations because of its building design. Most of the walls have seismic joists that are "designed to move and rack" in case of a "big event" like an earthquake, according to Don Long, director of facilities and engineering for the hospital. The hospital also has a generator that can provide power to "life safety and critical equipment for two weeks," Long said. Providence CEO Ella Goss said the hospital's staff adjusted quickly to safety protocols before and after the quake (Taylor, KTUU, 12/1).
    • New York: UPMC Chautauqua President and CEO Betsy Wright, who served as an executive for the hospital for 35 years, will retire from her position on Dec. 31. Wright was the hospital's COO before she became CEO 20 years ago. She also is an executive member of the Healthcare Association of New York State. Wright will be succeeded by Brian Durniok, current president of UPMC Northwest (Vaidya, Becker's Hospital Review, 11/30).
    • Utah: Lisa Beglarian, a nurse at Intermountain Medical Center, creates mementos for families of ICU patients who pass away. Beglarian gives families a lab tube containing a copy of an EKG tape with the deceased family member's last heartbeat. The tube also contains a message that states, "May my heartbeat be a gentle reminder of the love I have for you." Beglarian said the mementos allow the family to have "at least one positive memory of their experience in [the] ICU" (Modern Healthcare, 12/1).

    Next, get URMC's end-of-life conversation prompts

    When it comes to end-of-life care, most organizations struggle to meet patients' needs. In a recent poll, 87% of Americans age 65 and older said that they believe their doctor should discuss end-of-life issues with their patients; however, only 27% of those polled had actually discussed these issues with their doctor.

    Download URMC's conversation prompts to start improving end-of-life care for patients.

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