Coronavirus Latest Updates

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Advancing Care
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10/28/2022
Getty Images A surge in pediatric respiratory infections has been making headlines. Not only is the number of cases unusual, so is the timing.  The respiratory infection season typically begins in the winter months. However, Sankaran Krishnan, MD, Acting Chief of Pediatric Pulmonology, Allergy, Immunology and Sleep Medicine at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, a member of Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth), advises parents and caregivers not to panic. “Most cases of respiratory i...
8/15/2022
Photo courtesy of Jay Gala When eating suddenly became difficult, Jay Gala turned to Good Samaritan Hospital for help. Thanks to the expertise of our physicians, he’s now enjoying meals again. By Deborah Skolnik After graduating from college, Jay Gala was living in Boston and working as a software engineer. With a job he loved and a fun city to explore, he was enjoying all that life has to offer. Except, suddenly, food. The problem began overnight. “One day, I could eat normally, and swallowing was fine...
6/16/2022
New treatment methods can eliminate many of the devastating symptoms of Sickle Cell Disease for children and adolescents with the high-risk disease, according to a five-year study led by a Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth) doctor. The study results were recently published as part of a research letter in JAMA Pediatrics, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Medical Association. Featured image: Trial patient Hanif Mouehla (14) with his mother and familial donor Khuraira Musa; (right...
10/17/2018
“Excess alcohol consumption is the third-leading preventable cause of death in this country, causing 85,000 deaths a year,” says Gail Bailey-Wallace, Medical Director of the Kyle Goldberg Turning Point Program at MidHudson Regional Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth). “To avoid driving home drunk, pace yourself at parties: sip as opposed to guzzling and pair your alcohol with high-protein food, like cheese, to slow absorption.” Dr. Bailey-Wallace recommends no...
6/1/2019
As seen in the March/April issue of Advancing Care  A convoy of emergency service vehicles surrounded Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth), in Valhalla and flashed waves of lights as support for children battling serious medical conditions this past holiday season. Children, their families and staff waved back with lights of their own, creating a spectacular light show during a special holiday edition of ”Good Night Lights“ at the h...
4/17/2019
How one woman — and three doctors using advanced technology at MidHudson Regional Hospital — took on breast cancer and won. By Laurie Yarnell As seen in the May/June 2019 issue of Advancing Care  n July 2017, Laura Bullock, 52, of Hyde Park, had an appointment for a routine — or so she thought — annual mammography at MidHudson Regional Hospital , a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth). Though she had dense breast tissue, Bullock, who runs an online antique-and-vintage...
12/21/2021
Adobe Stock / hywards The first kidney transplant patient at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital is doing great, thanks to her skilled medical team — and her dad. In 2002, Valerie Portelle was born with congenital nephrotic syndrome, a rare kidney disease. When she was 2 years old, she had the first-ever kidney transplant at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. The donor was her father, who passed away last March from glioblastoma. Portelle, a resident of Nanuet, has had no further surgeries, although she has...
10/20/2019
As seen in the November/December 2019 Issue of Advancing Care Eleven runners from the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth) are set to go the distance in the 2019 TCS New York City Marathon on November 3 to further the network’s mission of providing the highest-quality care in the Hudson Valley. The marathoners, representing WMCHealth’s 10 hospitals, have dedicated their races to their patients. Donations, which will stay local to each marathoner’s hospital, can be made at WMCHealth.org/...
8/26/2019
As seen in the September/October 2019 issue of Advancing Care Eleven runners from the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth) will be going the distance in the 2019 TCS New York City Marathon on November 3 to further the network’s mission of providing the highest-quality care in the Hudson Valley. Supporters of the runners and WMCHealth will be able to cheer them on via social media, with the hashtag #TeamWMCHealth. The marathoners, representing WMCHealth’s 10 hospitals, have dedicated the...
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4/12/2017
3/29/2021
11/30/2021
As seen in the February 2021 Issue of Advancing Care. Adobe Stock photos Birth – 18 Years Immunizations: Birth: Hepatitis B (HepB) – 1st dose 2 months old: HepB – 2nd dose, Rotavirus (RV1 or RV5) – 1st dose, Diphtheria, tetanus, & acellular pertussis (DTaP) – 1st dose, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) – 1st dose, Pneumococcal conjugate (PCV13), Inactivated poliovirus (IPV) 4 months old: RV1 or RV5 – 2nd dose, DTaP – 2nd dose, Hib – 2nd dose, PCV13 – 2nd dose, IPV – 2nd dose 6 months old: DTaP – 3...
12/21/2021
In February 2021, Walter Oestreicher’s life took a drastic turn as the 16-year-old from Westchester County shifted his focus from high school academics and athletics to surviving MIS-C — a rare but serious condition associated with COVID-19. Just one month after testing positive for the coronavirus, Walter was diagnosed with this potentially fatal condition. His symptoms, which included a 104° fever, excruciating abdominal pain and a rash, led to widespread inflammation of organs throughout his body. Th...
12/21/2021
While other mothers joyously watched their babies achieve milestones, Toni Ann Schmitt of East Hampton, NY, searched for a medical team to help her son, Matthew. When he was a toddler, Matthew began experiencing brief, sudden lapses of attention. Unsatisfied with the diagnosis from her local hospital, Toni Ann was determined to find another team. That’s when a friend recommended Steven Wolf, MD, and Patricia McGoldrick, NP, of Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, a member of WMCHealth. Matthew was diagnose...
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12/21/2021
Photo by Gabre Cameron on Unsplash Collaborating with the Food Bank of the Hudson Valley, the food service staff at Good Samaritan Hospital, a member of WMCHealth, is transforming leftover fresh food from the cafeteria into pre-portioned, single-person frozen meals in microwaveable containers. The work is part of a Food Recovery Program introduced at the hospital. Meals are delivered to local programs that serve mostly the senior population.
12/20/2021
Adobe Stock / natali_mis Endoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure for disease identification and treatment and is a critical tool for diagnostics in gastroenterology and hepatobiliary (liver) care. Physicians specializing in gastroenterology and liver diseases are now performing endoscopic procedures that help diagnose conditions of the esophagus, stomach, colon, biliary tract and pancreas in a new endoscopy suite at Westchester Medical Center. Endoscopes are small tubes with an affixed light and cam...
4/12/2017
8/7/2022
Marilynn Carroll (right) with her daughter, Nancy (left) . Photos courtesy of WMCHealth When Marilynn Carroll’s heart valve was malfunctioning, Good Samaritan Hospital offered the perfect solution. By Deborah Skolnik It’s easy to overlook a health problem that creeps up gradually. Marilynn Carroll, 89, of Sparrowbush, hardly noticed when she began feeling fatigued and short of breath. As time went on, though, her family saw a change. “We would help her get into a car, and then we would notice a bit of p...
12/21/2021
Adobe Stock / sdecoret Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, a member of WMCHealth, has joined forces with other hospitals around the country and the world to investigate the effects of COVID on kids. The Mystery of MIS-C One strong area of interest has been MIS-C, or multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, a condition linked to COVID-19 in which different body parts become inflamed, such as the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain and gastrointestinal system. “Outside of MIS-C, children generally manage COV...
2/21/2016
8/17/2017
12/21/2021
According to The American Cancer Society, more than 281,000 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in the United States for 2021, with the numbers steadily increasing in recent years. To serve this growing need, Bon Secours Community Hospital is now offering 3D mammography — making us the only provider of 3D mammography in the city of Port Jervis and surrounding area at press time. 3D technology utilizes X-ray images of the breast from many different angles and layers, to produce images w...
8/18/2016
12/20/2021
Fulfilling a promise to deliver more advanced services to Ulster County and the surrounding areas, WMCHealth opened a new cardiac catheterization laboratory at HealthAlliance Hospital on Broadway, in Kingston. The new laboratory offers emergent and planned treatment for blocked arteries, irregular heartbeats and coronary heart disease — services never before available in Ulster County. The service operates under the direction of WMCHealth’s comprehensive Heart and Vascular Institute. HealthAlliance is n...
12/21/2021
Peter Myer is happy to be back home in Albany, spending time with his wife, Marie. Photo by Daniella Inzerilli After three cardiac events that greatly damaged his heart, a grandfather in Albany is eager to dive into life again, following innovative heart transplant surgery at Westchester Medical Center. By Debra Bresnan Peter Myer celebrated his 74th birthday in May, making plans to open his backyard pool for the season and spend time with family. But just a few months earlier — after a third, near-fata...
1/14/2021
12/21/2021
The transformation of HealthAlliance Hospital from two hospitals in Kingston into one on Mary’s Avenue Campus is the first component of a major, two-phase healthcare advancement project in Ulster County. The redevelopment of the hospital includes, but is not limited to: A refresh of the existing hospital and a new, two-story building adjoining the current facility. Expanded capacity for a full range of emergency visits in a new Emergency Care Center. All private medical/surgical patient rooms. Efficient...
12/20/2021
Adobe Stock / Sergey Nivens Many genetic disorders must be identified early in life and treated as children mature into adolescents and on through adulthood. WMCHealth Physicians Advanced Medical Genetics is now assisting families and individuals with the initial diagnosis and long-term treatment of genetic and metabolic conditions, such as phenylketonuria (PKU), lysosomal disorders and Pompe disease, through WMCHealth Physicians Advanced Medical Genetics. Advanced Medical Genetics has provided care for...
12/20/2021
Adobe Stock / VadimGuzhva Westchester Medical Center now offers advanced outpatient therapy for the management of diabetic wounds and ulcers, as well as slow-healing wounds resulting from serious traumatic injuries, infections and soft-tissue radiation injury. Westchester Medical Center joins established wound care programs at WMCHealth’s MidHudson Regional Hospital and HealthAlliance Hospital with outpatient wound care treatment programs operated in partnership with RestorixHealth, a national wound car...
12/21/2021
The beds in the Pediatric Emergency Room at MidHudson Regional Hospital are kid-friendly, just like the colorful mural below. WMCHealth offers expanding pediatric services and specialized expertise to children and families across the Hudson Valley. By Lisa Cesarano As part of our commitment to care for children across the Hudson Valley region, WMCHealth continues to expand the recently opened pediatric services offered at MidHudson Regional Hospital, in Poughkeepsie, a member of WMCHealth. These special...
10/23/2016
12/21/2021
Ben Katzenstein (center) is the fourth-generation leader of his family’s ice cream flavoring ingredients company, Star Kay White Inc. With him are his sons Alex (left), the father of Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital patient Amelia, and Gabe (right). (Photo credit: Council of Industry and Picture This Studios.) Tell us about your recent experience at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. As a newborn, my granddaughter failed to thrive. During her first three weeks of life, her weight plummeted from 7 pounds,...
12/21/2021
For the Gershmans, philanthropy is a family tradition. From left: Josh, Alisa, Seth and Charlie. When Charlie Gershman of Briarcliff Manor developed seizures at age 12, his parents, Seth and Alisa, took him to a pediatric neurologist who recommended he see Carrie Muh, MD, Chief of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Esmond Nissim Interventional Pediatric Neurology and Neurosurgery Program at the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, in Valhalla. Dr. Muh recommended that he have a surgery called a stereoelectroencepha...
12/20/2021
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, stroke is a leading cause of death in the United States, with about 795,000 people in the U.S. suffering a stroke each year. WMCHealth encourages the public to learn more about stroke symptoms and to call 911 immediately if someone shows signs of a possible stroke. Emergency medical services can be directed to take a stroke patient to the closest WMCHealth hospital for expert care if transport is considered safe for the individual. Recently, W...
8/18/2016
3/29/2021
8/17/2017
12/21/2021
Adobe Stock / Kurhan WMCHealth Women’s Health Institute now offers women’s health services at HealthAlliance Hospital in Kingston and Margaretville. Services include obstetrics, gynecology, urogynecology and female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery under the direction of Ashanda Saint Jean, MD, and Sean Tedjarati, MD.
2/14/2017
10/15/2015
12/21/2021
Loss of blood due to a traumatic injury is a leading cause of death in the United States, and law-enforcement personnel are often the first to arrive at a trauma scene. Since the sooner blood loss is mitigated after injury the better, specialists from Westchester Medical Center’s Level I trauma center continue to train Westchester County Police Department Emergency Services Unit personnel on techniques that help mitigate excessive bleeding caused by a traumatic injury. The effort is a component of Westc...
8/20/2018
2/14/2017
6/18/2017
6/20/2016
8/17/2022
Photo by Lauren Asselmeyer , courtesy of WMCHealth Meet Dr. Chris O’Brien, pediatric hospitalist with Maria Fareri Children’s Healthcare Services at MidHudson Regional Hospital . By Laurie Yarnell From a young age growing up in Glens Falls, NY, Chris O’Brien, MD, knew he wanted to pursue a career in medicine. As an undergrad at Siena College in Albany he volunteered at Albany Medical Center in the pediatric unit. As he read books and played games with the young patients in the hospital, he realized pedi...
6/18/2017
12/21/2021
Fifteen-year-old Amia Murray has been seizure-free since her minimally invasive brain surgery. Photos by Matt Wittmeyer This teen’s seizures have stopped, following a minimally invasive procedure at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. By Laurie Yarnell Today, 15-year-old Rochester resident Amia Murray “is a typical teen, into fashion, makeup and music,” says her mom, Taneesha Ashford. But when Amia was about 5, Ashford, a licensed practical nurse, noticed her having hand tremors, first in her sleep and th...
12/21/2021
Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, a member of WMCHealth, was the lead center for a national, multicenter study on myocarditis, (inflammation of the heart muscle) in adolescents after COVID-19 vaccination. Results of the study, in which cardiac imaging data was collected from hospitals around the country to help characterize myocarditis and to better understand its impact, were published recently in  Pediatrics , the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Supriya Jain, MD, an attend...
9/10/2020
12/20/2021
Adobe Stock / Blue Planet Studio A new program at Good Samaritan Hospital that offers a one-time minimally invasive procedure designed to reduce the risk of strokes that originate in the left atrial appendage recently hit a milestone. In less than one year since the Cardiac Electrophysiology Program opened at the hospital, 50 WATCHMAN procedures have been performed. The procedure helps prevent stroke in patients who have an irregular heartbeat and who cannot use blood thinners. The program is part of th...
9/10/2020
12/21/2021
Bruce Fischer, DPM, FACFAS, Director of the Diabetic Foot Care Program, and Anita Volpe, DNP, RN, VP/Hospital Administrator, are pictured with members of the team at St. Anthony Community Hospital as they welcome our patients. How are your feet? It’s an important question for people living with diabetes and one that got a little easier to answer, as St. Anthony Community Hospital recently opened a new Diabetic Foot Care Program. Board-certified podiatrists specializing in diabetic foot care, diabetic li...
10/15/2015
12/21/2021
5-year-old Evie LaBrecque and her family find a supportive community at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. When her older daughter, Zoey, was born with cystic fibrosis seven years ago, a Google search led Denise LaBrecque of Newburgh to Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, a member of WMCHealth. CF is a chronic and progressive genetic disease of the mucus glands that affects respiratory and digestive systems. So, when LaBrecque learned her younger daughter, Evie, now 5, also had CF, she knew where to turn. ...
9/10/2020
12/20/2016
9/10/2020
12/22/2021
Milinda Mejorado, RN, (left) was inspired by the exceptional treatment her son received as a new liver recipient at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital and Westchester Medical Center, where she now works full-time. Photos by John Halpern The care her son received as a 10-year-old liver transplant patient at two WMCHealth hospitals inspired Milinda Mejorado, RN, to completely change her life. By Laurie Yarnell Tyler Mejorado was born healthy. For his first five years, he was active, and none of his annual p...
4/12/2017
2/21/2016
12/20/2016
12/21/2021
Children and adults in need of treatment of specialized ear, nose and throat (ENT) services now have another option to receive care with WMCHealth Physicians Advanced ENT Services, as a new office has opened in Fishkill, NY. Also known as otolaryngologists, WMCHealth’s ENT specialists utilize the latest equipment and techniques to diagnose and treat ear, nose and throat issues, including hearing loss and vestibular therapy for balance issues. In addition, WMCHealth Physicians Advanced ENT Services provi...
2/14/2017
12/21/2021
We continue to encourage everyone to catch up on routine medical care that may have been delayed during the pandemic. Renewing a commitment to keep up with health screenings, tests and immunizations is a great gift to yourself and your loved ones. Scan the QR code here to access a guide to routine healthcare at every age. If you do not already have a physician, or need a new provider for any reason, call WMCHealth Physicians at 1.833.329.0095 for a convenient connection to a medical practice in Westches...
12/17/2015
12/20/2021
Joint pain can affect individuals of all ages and can be prevalent in active seniors. Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease, is a common form of arthritis that occurs when cartilage inside a joint wears down over time. As a result, the joint becomes increasingly painful and difficult to move. Robotic-arm-assisted total knee replacement procedures are now helping to make some implant placements at St. Anthony Community Hospital more precise and aligned with each patient’s unique anatom...
6/18/2017
12/21/2021
Even as progress is made vanquishing the COVID-19 pandemic, many kids are still battling anxiety and depression. Learn the signs that your child may be struggling and how to help. By Deborah Skolnik Many kids have returned to in-person learning for the current academic year. Yet, some are still dealing with psychological fallout from the pandemic and facing the future with anxiety. These feelings come as no surprise, says Abraham Bartell, MD, Associate Director of Psychiatry and Division Chief for Child...
1/17/2021
4/12/2016
12/21/2021
Adobe Stock / Qualit Design Medical imaging is a crucial tool in disease identification and diagnosis. Now, medical imaging specialists at Westchester Medical Center can capture inpatient scans fast and with enhanced clarity, with a new spectral computed tomography imaging system. In fact, Westchester Medical Center recently became the first hospital on the East Coast — and only the second hospital in the U.S. — to have captured high-quality scans with more information than conventional CT imaging with ...
6/13/2017
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11/30/2021
Set the stage for protecting your health in 2021 with preventive healthcare. By Laurie Yarnell / Adobe Stock photo As seen in the February 2021 Issue of Advancing Care. The New Year is a great time to launch healthy, new habits. One of the best ways to do that is to be proactive about your health and have the medically recommended screenings, tests and immunizations appropriate to your age, gender and family history. On pages 5-6, you’ll find a handy chart for these preventive health measures for every ...
12/22/2021
Photos by Kenneth Gabrielsen Thanks to the advanced technology and medical talent at Westchester Medical Center, a COVID patient is back on his feet, putting new beauty into the world. By Deborah Skolnik Abraham Miller, 69, hadn’t yet heard of COVID-19 when he became ill in March 2020. “I thought it was a cold or the flu,” the Monsey resident remembers. “Over the next two days, I became short of breath, couldn’t sleep and my bones hurt,” he says. A friend of his son’s, a volunteer ambulance worker, came...
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12/22/2021
Marcella Franks is now able to do things she enjoys, like taking walks and shopping with her daughter-in-law Kathy. Photo by John Halpern When a faulty heart valve left a 77-year-old woman breathless, Good Samaritan Hospital helped her return to an active lifestyle. By Deborah Skolnik Marcella Franks led a lifestyle that could have easily exhausted someone half her age. Though officially retired for several years, the Port Jervis resident had occasionally worked part-time for the same cosmetics manufact...
4/12/2016
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12/21/2021
Photos by John Halpern Thanks to the talented physicians at MidHudson Regional Hospital, a Beacon girl is back on her feet — and out of pain. By Deborah Skolnik In 2011, physicians at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital diagnosed Donalee Mickler’s then-1-year-old daughter, Zechia, with a diaphragmatic hernia, a hole in the muscle separating the chest and abdomen. Because the abdominal organs may push up through the hole and affect lung development and breathing, the birth defect is potentially life-threate...
12/20/2021
Bon Secours Urology, a member of WMCHealth, is now seeing patients at a second Rockland County location — 2 Crosfield Avenue, Suite 380, West Nyack, NY — for advanced treatment of prostate enlargement, prostate cancer, kidney stone disease, erectile dysfunction and more. The team of board-certified urologists has been providing patient-centered care to the community for more than 20 years and offers a wide range of services, including MRI-guided biopsies and radiotherapies, for fast, precise diagnoses a...
12/20/2021
Adobe Stock / SciePro Westchester Medical Center recently became the first neurosurgical oncology program in the Hudson Valley to offer a targeted therapy for brain tumors that can help delay tumor progression, spare healthy tissue and reduce the number of post-surgical radiation treatments — including the side effects that come with them. Cleared for use by the Food and Drug Administration for appropriate patients, the GammaTile® therapy consists of a postage-stamp-sized implant surgically embedded int...
10/22/2017
12/20/2021
Adobe Stock / utah51 Westchester Medical Center is certified by New York State as a Comprehensive Stroke Center, a designation that represents the most advanced stroke treatment available in a given geographic area. As well, Good Samaritan Hospital, MidHudson Regional Hospital and HealthAlliance Hospital are all designated by the New York State Department of Health as Primary Stroke Centers. “Our WMCHealth stroke care teams work in concert for the administration of timely stroke care,” says Ji Chong, MD...
12/21/2021
Adobe Stock / bsd studio WMCHealth’s Behavioral Health Center is seeking individuals to participate in a study researching the correlation between COVID-19-related brain inflammation, cognitive impairment and related symptoms. Individuals who meet the following criteria are welcome to apply: Documented positive COVID-19 test Recovered from the acute illness Completed at least an eighth-grade level of education Fluent in the English language Over the age of 20 WMCHealth behavioral health specialists are ...
11/1/2022
Getty Images By Rita Ross With Halloween approaching, parents should be on the lookout for “cannabis candy,” which contains THC, a compound found in marijuana. Parents should also secure edibles they may have at home. Recreational use of THC is now legal in New York State for the over-21 crowd, and some cannabis edibles are sold to adults in packaging that’s easily mistaken for name-brand candy. These products can spell danger if consumed by kids. “We’ve seen an uptick, with roughly three to five accide...
11/15/2022
Photos by John Rizzo By David Levine and Melissa F. Pheterson DJ Carol doesn’t spin records at dances anymore. At 81, Carol LaChiana has put away her doo-wop oldies and her red tambourine in favor of a quieter but still active life, happy to have survived bouts with bladder and breast cancer and adjusting to a world without the husband she had known since she was 15 and married at 20. When we profiled LaChiana five years ago , she was traveling to regional party halls from her home in Nanuet. She stoppe...
11/15/2022
Photos by Ken Gabrielsen Arun Sharma’s knees used to ache constantly. But thanks to St. Anthony Community Hospital, he’s getting his kicks out of life again. By Deborah Skolnik When Arun Sharma isn’t running his electrical construction company, you can find him on the golf course or cheering for his favorite sports teams. Given all that, the 55-year-old Hudson Valley resident is always on the go. But recently, a health issue — aching knees — put a damper on his active lifestyle. “I noticed the pain when...