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News

Med Center Health and Lindsey Wilson College Sign RN-to-BSN Agreement

Friday, December 8, 2017

Med Center Health and Lindsey Wilson College recently held a signing ceremony for an agreement to assist Registered Nurses in the Med Center Health family receive their BSN. The agreement allows nurses working full time to earn an accredited baccalaureate degree in three semesters through an online format, with a reduced tuition rate from Lindsey Wilson College. Additionally, one Med Center Health employee in each entering RN BSN class will receive the LWC - Med Center Health RN BSN Scholarship.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) and the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN) both recommend that nurses get their BSN within five years of earning a diploma or associate’s degree. The IOM recommends that BSN holders be increased from 50% to 80% by 2020. “This partnership is an important component of advancing patient care through increasing the educational preparation of our nursing workforce,” said Jill Payne, DNP, RN, CENP, Executive Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer of Med Center Health. “By making access easier through online learning and by making it more affordable, nurses at Med Center Health have more options to complete their bachelor’s degree. This is not only good for our nurses, but also good for patients that entrust us with their care.”

According to LWC Nursing and Health Division Chair Emiley Button, DNP, APRN-BC, the agreement marks another milestone for the continued collaboration between the college and hospitals in the region. “Med Center Health will begin serving as a key partner in our RN to BSN online program,” said Button. “The intent is to foster continuous improvement to both organizations and to provide opportunities for the collaboration and growth and the effectiveness of the hospital’s nursing staff.”

The agreement will streamline the LWC admissions and enrollment process for Med Center Health employees. For more information about the program, visit online.lindsey.edu/programs/nurn.

The Medical Center at Bowling Green Awarded Advanced Certification for Primary Stroke Centers

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

The Medical Center at Bowling Green announced that it has earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Heart-Check mark for Advanced Certification for Primary Stroke Centers. The Gold Seal of Approval® and the Heart-Check mark represent symbols of quality from their respective organizations. The Medical Center was first certified in 2009 and has maintained its certification ever since.

The Medical Center underwent a rigorous onsite review in October 2017. Joint Commission experts evaluated compliance with stroke-related standards and requirements, including program management, the delivery of clinical care and performance improvement.

“The Medical Center has thoroughly demonstrated the greatest level of commitment to the care of stroke patients through its Advanced Certification for Primary Stroke Centers,” said Patrick Phelan, executive director, Hospital Business Development, The Joint Commission. “We commend The Medical Center for becoming a leader in stroke care, potentially providing a higher standard of service for stroke patients in its community.”

“We congratulate The Medical Center for achieving this designation,” said Nancy Brown, chief executive officer, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. “By adhering to this very specific set of treatment guidelines The Medical Center has clearly made it a priority to deliver high quality care to all patients affected by stroke.”

“The Medical Center is pleased to receive advanced certification from The Joint Commission and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association,” said Connie Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Med Center Health. “The certification provides us with the opportunity to highlight the exceptional stroke care we provide as well as to continually strive to advance our care even further.”

Established in 2003, Advanced Certification for Primary Stroke Centers is awarded for a two-year period to Joint Commission-accredited acute care hospitals. The certification was derived from the Brain Attack Coalition’s “Recommendations for the Establishment of Primary Stroke Centers” (JAMA, 2000) and the “Revised and Updated Recommendations for the Establishment of Primary Stroke Centers” (Stroke, 2011).

Stroke is the number four cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States, according to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every four minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

OrthopedicsPlus Physical Therapy to Join Med Center Health

Friday, August 18, 2017

On Wednesday, August 16, the Commonwealth Health Corporation board of directors voted to acquire OrthopedicsPlus Physical Therapy, a private company with seven locations throughout Bowling Green, Brownsville, Elkton, Morgantown, Russellville and Scottsville. The transition is anticipated to occur in Fall 2017.

OrthopedicsPlus has been in existence since 2002 and provides rehabilitative services for non-operative and post-operative conditions such as neck, back and joint pain; sprains, strains and fractures; ligament and tendon repair and reconstruction; joint replacement; work-related injuries and testing; and neurologic conditions.

“Providing access to healthcare where people live and work is a key component in helping us meet our mission to care for people and improve the quality of life in our communities. This new relationship allows Med Center Health to have a physical presence in four additional counties in Kentucky,” said Connie Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Med Center Health.

Eric Hagan, Med Center Health Executive Vice President added, “The addition of OrthopedicsPlus will allow Med Center Health to enhance our existing inpatient and outpatient physical rehabilitation services and expand our sports medicine and occupational medicine programs. We are excited about this opportunity to help more people, and provide our communities even broader access to comprehensive services and medical specialists.”

OrthopedicsPlus owner Jase Pinerola, PT, DPT, ECS, SCS, LAT will join Med Center Health as Vice President of Physical Rehabilitation Services, overseeing OrthopedicsPlus, as well as the health system’s existing inpatient and outpatient physical rehabilitation locations. “Being a part of Med Center Health will give me greater opportunities to provide expanded health services for my community. Our same great staff will continue to provide an exceptional patient experience,” said Pinerola.

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Med Center Health is the flagship brand of Commonwealth Health Corporation (CHC), the parent company of The Medical Center. Med Center Health has hospitals in Bowling Green, Albany, Caverna (Horse Cave), Franklin and Scottsville and operates a long-term, acute care hospital, Commonwealth Regional Specialty Hospital. The combined hospitals offer 454 acute care beds and 110 extended care beds. Med Center Health is one of the largest employers in Southcentral Kentucky with more than 3,500 employees. The Medical Center at Bowling Green is a 337-bed facility that has been serving patients for over 90 years offering the region’s only open heart surgery program, cancer treatment center, obstetrics and neonatology, and adult inpatient psychiatric unit, while also providing emergency medical services in Warren County.

Medical Center EMS receives American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline EMS Recognition Award

Monday, July 3, 2017

Medical Center EMS has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® EMS Gold Award for implementing quality improvement measures for the treatment of patients who experience severe heart attacks.

Every year, more than 250,000 people experience an ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), the deadliest type of heart attack caused by a blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment. To prevent death, it’s critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible, either by mechanically opening the blocked vessel or by providing clot-busting medication.

Unfortunately, a significant number of STEMI patients don't receive this prompt reperfusion therapy, which is critical in restoring blood flow. Mission: Lifeline seeks to save lives by closing the gaps that separate these patients from timely access to appropriate treatments. Mission: Lifeline’s EMS recognition program recognizes emergency medical services for their efforts in improving systems of care and improving the quality of life for these patients.

Emergency Medical System providers are vital to the success of Mission: Lifeline. EMS agencies perform 12-lead ECGs which measure the electrical activity of the heart and can help determine if a heart attack has occurred. They also follow protocols derived from American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology guidelines. These correct tools, training, and practices allow EMS providers to rapidly identify suspected heart attack patients, promptly notify the hospital, and trigger an early response from the awaiting hospital personnel.

Agencies that receive the Mission: Lifeline Gold award have demonstrated at least 75 percent compliance for each required achievement measure for two years.

“EMTs and paramedics play a vital part in the system of care for those who have heart attacks,” said James Jollis, M.D., Chair of the Mission: Lifeline Advisory Working Group. “Since they often are the first medical point of contact, they can shave precious minutes of life-saving treatment time by activating the emergency response system that alerts hospitals. We applaud Medical Center EMS for achieving this award that shows it meets evidence-based guidelines in the treatment of people who have severe heart attacks.”

“Medical Center EMS is dedicated to making our service among the best in the country, and the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program is helping us accomplish that by implementing processes for improving systems of care with the goal of improving the quality of care for all acute coronary syndrome patients,” said Jim Berry, Director of Medical Center EMS. “As part of Med Center Health, Medical Center EMS strives to improve the quality of life in the communities we serve. We are pleased to be recognized for our dedication and achievements in emergency medical care for all cardiac patients.”


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About Med Center Health

Med Center Health is the flagship brand of Commonwealth Health Corporation (CHC), the parent company of The Medical Center. Med Center Health also has hospitals in Albany, Caverna (Horse Cave), Franklin and Scottsville and operates a long-term, acute care hospital, Commonwealth Regional Specialty Hospital. The combined hospitals offer 454 acute care beds and 110 extended care beds. Med Center Health is one of the largest employers in Southcentral Kentucky with more than 3,500 employees. The Medical Center at Bowling Green is a 337-bed facility that has been serving patients for over 90 years offering the region’s only open heart surgery program, cancer treatment center, obstetrics and neonatology, and adult inpatient psychiatric unit, while also providing emergency medical services in Warren County.


About Mission: Lifeline

The American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline® program helps hospitals and emergency medical services develop systems of care that follow proven standards and procedures for acute coronary syndrome patients. The program works by mobilizing teams across the continuum of care to implement American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology clinical treatment guidelines. For more information, visit heart.org.

The Medical Center hosts Groundbreaking for UK College of Medicine-Bowling Green Campus

Tuesday, June 6, 2017


Groundbreaking for the UK College of Medicine-Bowling Green Campus took place Tuesday, June 6 at 10:00 a.m. at The Medical Center at Bowling Green. This four-year, regional campus medical school is the first of its kind in Kentucky and is a partnership between The Medical Center, the University of Kentucky, and Western Kentucky University.


“Through this investment in education, we are continuing to increase access to quality health care—and ensuring that we have the physicians available to take care of generations to come,” said Connie Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Med Center Health. “We have always had a commitment to bringing the best in health care to our communities. This medical school is going to raise the bar even higher as we increase opportunities for research and technology, and adhere to the latest in evidence-based practice.”


The UK College of Medicine-Bowling Green Campus will be a fully functioning campus, utilizing the exact same curriculum and assessments as UK’s Lexington campus. On-site faculty will have UK College of Medicine appointments and teach in small groups and provide simulation/standardized patient experiences with lectures delivered on-site from Lexington utilizing educational technology. Additionally, clinical experiences will occur at The Medical Center at Bowling Green and surrounding community practices.


“At the University of Kentucky,” UK President Eli Capilouto said, “we know that working together—across disciplines and across the Commonwealth—is the best way to ensure real, positive change for those we serve. This collaboration will allow us to effectively and efficiently utilize existing resources throughout the state to meet this important need for more physicians and greater access to health care.”


“This partnership helps ensure our state will remain competitive as the landscape of health care changes,” said Dr. Robert DiPaola, Dean of the UK College of Medicine. “It also signals a new beginning in the efforts to train more physicians in Kentucky, for Kentucky, and especially a new beginning for our future students as they embark on this journey and career in medicine. It is an honor to celebrate this milestone with our partners in developing the UK College of Medicine-Bowling Green Campus.”


Basic science and early didactic training will be taught in conjunction with faculty at WKU through both onsite classes and distance education methods in accordance with UK College of Medicine curricular protocols.


“We have been working for many years in conjunction with The Medical Center at Bowling Green to address workforce demands in health care, most recently in nursing and physical therapy, and this collaboration will address a critical need that hospitals and communities throughout our region have for more physicians,” said WKU President Gary A. Ransdell. “WKU faculty will be fully engaged, and I’m pleased that our students will have even more opportunities to pursue a medical education here in Bowling Green.”


Longtime UK faculty member and administrator Dr. Todd Cheever will serve as the first associate dean for the Bowling Green campus. Dr. Don Brown, a vascular surgeon and Bowling Green physician, who also serves as director of medical education at The Medical Center, has been named assistant dean.


The UK College of Medicine-Bowling Green Campus will be accepting 30 students per year, and will be housed in a multi-purpose building attached to a five-story parking garage constructed on the campus of The Medical Center. Construction is scheduled for completion by the summer of 2018.




Med Center Health is the flagship brand of Commonwealth Health Corporation (CHC), the parent company of The Medical Center. Med Center Health also has hospitals in Albany, Caverna (Horse Cave), Franklin and Scottsville and operates a long-term, acute care hospital, Commonwealth Regional Specialty Hospital. The combined hospitals offer 454 acute care beds and 110 extended care beds. Med Center Health is one of the largest employers in Southcentral Kentucky with more than 3,500 employees. The Medical Center at Bowling Green is a 337-bed facility that has been serving patients for over 90 years offering the region’s only open heart surgery program, cancer treatment center, obstetrics and neonatology, and adult inpatient psychiatric unit, while also providing emergency medical services in Warren County.


UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, visit uky.edu/uk4ky. #uk4ky #seeblue


Western Kentucky University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs to 20,000 students on its main campus in Bowling Green and its regional campuses in Glasgow, Elizabethtown-Fort Knox and Owensboro. WKU has undergone a 20-year transformation, during which it completed two successful capital campaigns that raised more than $300 million combined and completed nearly a billion dollars in construction, renovation and revitalization of the physical campus. As an applied research university, WKU faculty and students are engaged in public service and research with practical applications, working with communities, business and industry to solve real world problems. For more information about WKU visit wku.edu.