Singing River Health System has honored Margaret “Peggy” Butler, Nancy Fagan and Wendi Wood as April Employees of the Month. Ocean Springs Hospital has honored Nancy Fagan, case management social worker, Patient Resource Management.
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Singing River Health System recently announced the Auxiliary Volunteers of the Quarter at both Singing River Hospital and Ocean Springs Hospital for the quarter ending March 2013.
At Ocean Springs Hospital, Oteria Cook was selected by her fellow volunteers to receive the award. Cook has been a member of the Ocean Springs Hospital Auxiliary since 1972. She has served in many capacities in her 41 years as an active member. Cook’s most recent assignment is in the hospital gift shop where she greets customers, assists with r purchases, stocks shelves and helps keep things tidy in the shop.
Cook has been described as energetic and is proud of the work she does as a volunteer for Ocean Springs Hospital. When asked what she loves about volunteering she said, “It’s the people I have met and the friendships I have formed over the years.”
Cook has three children, six grandchildren and one great-grandchild. She has been an active member of Safe Harbor United Methodist Church since 1958 and calls Moss Point her hometown.
Cook is a faithful volunteer and lives out the mission of Singing River Health System everyday she serves her community.
At Singing River Hospital, Martha Edwards was chosen for the award. She will have completed her first year with the auxiliary in April 2013. Since joining the volunteer group, Edwards has already worked 777 hours.
Eloise Bell, who nominated Edwards, said, “She is a very enthusiastic and energetic person. Martha could not decide which service she liked best, so she works them all.” Edwards currently volunteers in the Emergency Department, Healthplex, Radiology, Physical Therapy, Escort and West Entrance departments. When asked what she likes best about volunteering, Edwards said, “bringing smiles to patient’s faces.”
Edwards was born in Chattanooga, Tenn. and moved to Pascagoula, Miss. in 1971. She worked as a secretary at Ingalls. After returning to college and receiving her teaching degree, Edwards taught 25 years at Arlington Elementary School in Pascagoula. She and her husband, Craig, have three children: Vanessa, Jeremy and Gabriel.
In addition to her volunteer work at Singing River Hospital, Edwards is a very active member of Belle Fountain Baptist Church. She is a member of the adult choir, Women’s Missionary Union and teaches a sixth-grade Sunday school class.
Both award recipients will be honored at upcoming SRHS Awards ceremonies.
Singing River Health System has honored Auxilians of the Year for 2012.
At Singing River Hospital, John Wilkinson was honored as the Auxiliary Volunteer of the Year. Wilkinson has been a volunteer with Singing River Hospital since 1999 and is a past president of the SRH Auxiliary. He currently serves as the Chairman of the Patient Escort services and works with Information Desk services. Wilkinson has been a resident of Pascagoula since 1944, and he is retired from Huntington Ingalls Shipbuilding. His wife Patty is also an auxiliary volunteer. They have three children and eight grandchildren.
“I like volunteering at Singing River Hospital and being able to meet, help and encourage people,” Wilkinson said about his service with the health system.
At Ocean Springs Hospital, Carol Mentzer was honored as the Auxiliary Volunteer of the Year. Mentzer has been a volunteer with Ocean Springs Hospital for almost two years. She has worked in Surgery Waiting, at the Information Desk, as an Escort, and in Patient Transportation. She is originally from Maryland, but the Air Force brought her to the coast. She retired as the Command Chief Master Sergeant of the 403rd Wing at Keesler Air Force Base in 2002 after 33 years of service. She also retired from Chevron Refinery with 30 years of service in 2008. She is a member of the American Legion and enjoys fishing, playing golf and volunteering. She is also an avid animal lover.
Kathryn Webb, Singing River Health System volunteer and former employee, has been inducted into the Mississippi Nurses Association Hall of Fame. She was nominated by the District 6 Mississippi Nurses Association representing Jackson, George, and Greene counties.
Webb was one of three people bestowed with this honor during the annual Nightingale Awards Gala in Jackson, Miss.
Webb is an active volunteer at Singing River Hospital, having previously worked in the Surgical department at Singing River Hospital in 1958 after serving in a similar capacity at VA Hospital in Shreveport, La for 10 years.
Beginning in 1959, Webb helped establish an associate degree nursing program in collaboration with Singing River Hospital and Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College at the Perkinston campus. Students performed clinical rotations at Singing River Hospital and were bussed to the Perkinston campus for classes. This program was later transferred to the Jackson County campus and from there to the Jefferson Davis campus.
Subsequently a second program was initiated at the Jackson County campus. During initiation of the program, Webb was the sole BSN-prepared nurse and was responsible for compiling the initial procedure manual, “Introduction to the Clinical Aspects of Nursing” for the program. Following a seven year sabbatical from 1961-1968 while raising her children, Webb returned to Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College where she served as an instructor until her retirement from nursing education in 1991.
Webb completed her Masters of Science in psychiatric/mental health nursing from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1976. It is estimated that Webb’s work in nursing education contributed to the professional licensure of more than 1,000 nursing graduates.
Webb has served on the Mississippi Nurses Association’s District 6 board as a 1st vice president, 2nd vice president, board member and nominations committee member.
At SRHS, Webb has served as an active volunteer and recently helped start the “Baby Cuddlers” auxiliary volunteer program at Singing River Hospital. Webb also works in the Emergency Department as a volunteer and serves on the auxiliary board at Singing River Hospital.
Richard Lucas, SRHS Vice President of Communications, said, “Kathryn Webb has been remarkable in her service to Singing River Health System. We couldn’t be prouder of Kathryn for getting inducted into the Mississippi Nurses Association’s Hall of Fame.”
The Jackson County Board of Supervisors will honor Webb with an official proclamation on March 11 recognizing her recent induction into the Mississippi Nurses Association’s Hall of Fame.
Singing River Health System has honored Caroline Boykin, Angela Larkins and Sabrina “Tillie” McCoy as February Employees of the Month.
Boykin was born in Marietta, Ga., and raised in Hunstville Ala., until the age of eight when she moved to Pascagoula, Miss. She graduated from Pascagoula High School and took a nine month secretarial course at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College before transferring to the University of South Alabama to pursue a degree in music education. She has recently returned to Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, taking courses toward an Associated of Arts degree.
Prior to joining the SRHS team, Boykin worked in the legal field for eight years spending time at the Bryant/Colingo law firm and later at Krebs and Williams. She joined SRHS in 1993 as a secretary for Diana McClintock, director of surgical services at the time, and Iva Nell Vaughan. She also served as the standards coordinator during this time, typing, distributing and archiving all of the nursing standards, generic and unit specific. In 2006, Boykin worked as a secretary for Marsha White, former chief nursing officer. Boykin has been in the Administration department ever since, working for Sue Longcore and now Judy Wurstner, chief nursing officer.
Boykin currently resides in Wade, Miss., with her husband Wayne. She has one son, Benjamin. When not working, Boykin enjoys boating on the river, fishing, reading, and riding motorcycles.
Boykin enjoys working in the nursing department even though she is not a nurse. Boykin said she, “likes knowing and understanding the basics of nursing and how nurses help heal patients through the work with the standards.”
She is considered an important resource for all in the Health System due to her good working knowledge of a great deal around the hospital. Boykin said, “I try to help anyone that has questions or needs help doing things. It makes me feel good to help my fellow employees as well as our visitors and patients.”
Larkins was born in Philadelphia, Miss., where she attended Neshoba Central High School, graduating in 1985. Before joining SRHS, Larkins worked at Sears Department Store and Saads Home Health. Larkins joined SRHS in 1996 working as a nurse aide/unit coordinator on 2 South Central for Mrs. Iva Nell Vaughan. After two years she transferred to the Operating Room as an anesthesia technician and OR clerk. She later transferred to her current position in the Ocean Springs Hospital OR, where she has served as an anesthesia technician for the past eight years.
Larkins currently lives in Gautier, Miss., with her son, Cortez. In her spare time, Larkins enjoys spending time with her son and reading.
Larkins said, “The people throughout the years that I have worked with are like my second family. I love what I do in my department; everyone is willing to help each other.”
McCoy was born and raised in Vancleave, Miss. She attended Vancleave High School in 1998 and received her Associates of Applied Science degree from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College in 2011. Prior to joining SRHS, McCoy worked as an office manager for The Heart Center, PLLC for a year and The Children’s Clinic for five years. She joined SRHS in 2011 as a biller for three of SRHS Clinics and is currently in the same position.
McCoy currently lives in Vancleave with her husband, Mike. She has three children, Makayla, Mikey and Tyler. When not working, McCoy enjoys spending time with her children and family and reading historical romance novels.
McCoy said she enjoys working for SRHS Clinics Vancleave because she lives in Vancleave and has the opportunity to give world-class service to family, friends and members of the community she was raised in. She believes that the most important part of her job when helping a patient or co-worker is caring. “When you love your job and want to help, it shows,” said McCoy.
Singing River Health System has honored BJ Smith, Wendy Fayard and Robyn Hawes as January Employees of the Month.
Smith was born in Greenville, Miss. but was raised in Pascagoula, Miss. She graduated from Pascagoula High School and attended Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College where he received a degree in nursing.
Prior to joining the SRHS team, Smith worked at Mississippi Chemical Corporation and the Jackson County Tax Assessor’s office. She joined SRHS in 1985 as a unit clerk on the Pediatrics floor, and continued in this position while attending nursing school.
Smith currently resides in Moss Point, Miss. with her husband Sherman. She has three children, seven grandchildren and two great grandchildren. When not working, Smith enjoys making crafts, floral arranging, volunteering in free clinics and walking for her fitness.
Smith enjoys helping people and getting to work in many different roles within her department. She helps demonstrate world-class service by working close with patients and their families to make sure they have whatever they need to go home to transfer to another facility in a safe, proficient and caring manner.
Smith said, “I have always been blessed to work with great people and now is no exception.”
Fayard was born in Biloxi, Miss. and raised in the St. Martin community. She attended St. Martin High School, graduating in 1980 and went to Jackson County Junior College. Before joining SRHS, Fayard worked at Gulfport Memorial Hospital for seven years. She then moved to Colorado, where she worked for Northern Colorado Medical Center for 10 years and as a phlebotomist tech instructor of Aims Community College in Greely, Co. where she worked in the EMS department for five years teaching phlebotomy. Fayard joined SRHS in 2012 working in the lab as a phlebotomist and transferred to the Emergency department in July 2012 as a certified phlebotomist tech.
Fayard currently lives in Vancleave, Miss. with her partner Christina Gasaway. She has one son. In her spare time, Fayard enjoys spending time with her family, being outside doing things and helping people. She enjoys fixing things and is very good at it.
Fayard said, “Working at Ocean Springs Hospital has been wonderful. I love my coworkers and try to make patients and their family members comfortable.” I try to ensure patient satisfaction by treating the patients and their families as if they were part of her own.”
Hawes was born and raised in Moss Point, Miss. She attended Moss Point High School. Prior to joining SRHS, Hawes owned her own business and worked for Hancock Bank for eight years. She joined SRHS in 2003 starting in the cash posting department and later transferring to the AR department.
Hawes currently lives in Pascagoula with her husband Stuart Hawes and daughter. When not working, Hawes enjoys spending time with her family and friends, going on summer boating trips and vacationing with family.
Hawes enjoys working in the business office because she can help patients with their billing questions and concerns. She provides world-class services by providing prompt, accurate and courteous service to SRHS patients.
John S. Weldon, MD, FACP, has successfully earned his Board Certification in Hospice and Palliative Medicine from the American Board of Internal Medicine, making him a part of the new Supportive Care and Palliative Medicine program.
Weldon joins Dr. Edgar Hull, who is also Board Certified in Hospice and Palliative Medicine, and the new program began mid-January. Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with serious (progressive) illnesses. This type of care is focused on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain, and stresses of a serious illness—whatever the diagnosis. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and the family.
Palliative care is provided by a team of doctors, nurses, and other specialists who work with a patient's other doctors to provide an extra layer of support. Some need more education and explanation of what they’re going through, some need more specialized care and some just need someone to be there. This program provides someone to listen and cater to patient/family needs related to the physical (e.g. symptom management), psychological (e.g. anxiety, depression), spiritual (e.g. chaplain services) or social (e.g. family dynamics).
“Advances illnesses that may lead to the end of one's life also are burdened with miseries including pain, shortness of breath, depression and a host of other problems. Supportive care and palliative medicine focuses on the training and expertise to try to control these problems. Specialists in this area take great pride in trying to help patients have the best quality of life that they can,” Weldon said.
Palliative care is appropriate at any age and at any stage in a serious illness, and can be provided together with curative treatment.
Weldon obtained his undergraduate degree from the University of Georgia and his medical degree from Medical College of Georgia. Weldon practices internal medicine as a member of Inpatient Physician Services at Singing River Health System and has been on staff since 1991. The certification exam is only offered every two years. At the time of the last exam in October, eight physicians in Mississippi were board certified in this specialty, of which only three practice in the coast counties.
The new Supportive Care program is in the beginning stages at Singing River Hospital. After some time, they hope to spread it to Ocean Springs Hospital and possibly even to an outpatient setting. The program looks to provide support at any level and for all those involved in the care of a patient.