Philanthropic women meet

More than 60 women attended the first Power of the Purse event, hosted by the Philanthropic Women's Society of SAMC on Jan. 21. Designer handbags were auctioned off as part of the group's member-guest luncheon.

The Philanthropic Women's Society of SAMC is a group of community minded women who use the power of collective philanthropy to make an impact in healthcare. The group is in its fourth year and is open to all women who are interested in improving healthcare in our community.

The group has helped fund stroke telemedicine carts, programs at Neuromuscular Rehab & Balance Center, and most recently helped fund the new Palliative Care Program at SAMC.

The Philanthropic Women's Society plans to make the Power of the Purse an annual event. For more information about membership, contact the SAMC Foundation at (334) 673-4150 or

New record set in surgery

Members of the cardiovascular surgical team participate in an open heart surgery on Tuesday. 4120CVORTeamAtWork310x153 From left, Amanda Phillips, RN; Barbara Boatwright, RN; Nathan McCord, RNFA; John Streitman, MD, and Chris Gauldin, PA.

On Tuesday, Dec. 16, there were a record setting 86 surgical cases.

The record day is a clear indicator of a yearlong trend of increased surgeries at SAMC. The record was almost broken three days later with 85 cases.

Ronnie Dean, vice president of operations, praised the surgery team, saying everyone pulled together to make these high-volume days manageable.

"Everyone involved from Registration to Bed Placement, Patient Care Services, Support Services and our entire Periop/Anesthesia team is to be commended for outstanding teamwork in providing a safe and excellent service to a very large volume of patients," Dean said. "I've heard praise from the surgeons operating on these days and also heard from a patient who boasted that he was one of almost 90 cases performed Tuesday."

In fiscal year 2014 the Medical Center performed 14,193 cases, versus 13,171 in fiscal year 2013, an increase of 1,022 surgeries. That's an improvement of 644 cases in urology, 513 additional general surgeries; 345 neurosurgical cases; and 44 open heart surgeries.

To meet the growing demand, Surgical Services will open two operating rooms in 2015. The rooms were added, but not completed in 2010 when SAMC added an endovascular surgical suite. The new suites are scheduled to go into use by June 1.

ACOM students prepare for clinical rotations

Amy Andre, left, and Judy Higby of Medical Staff Services discuss clinical rotation options 3706ACOMClerkshipFair310x153 with ACOM students during the school's recent clerkship fair. Hospitals from Alabama and the surrounding region visited the school to present details about their facilities and network with students from ACOM's class of 2017 in advance of clinical clerkships (rotations) which will begin in August.