July 1, 2009
Charles T. Frock
FirstHealth of the Carolinas
I had the opportunity to participate in the North Carolina Prevention Partners Annual Meeting and Prevention
Awards on June 3, 2009. I left the event inspired by your
work with Prevention Partners. It is wonderful to see the
progress being made with tobacco-free environments and
Congratulations on receiving the 2009 Red Apple Award. It
was great to see your hospital recognized during the awards
Mary L. Piepenbring
The Duke Endowment
Screening for a silent killer
Sal Picard (right) had a happy reunion with ultrasound technician Chandra
Siering on the FirstHealth Mobile Health Services van after his recovery
from successful surgery to correct an abdominal aortic aneurysm. Siering
detected the potentially life-threatening condition during Picard’s
ultrasound screening on the Mobile Health van.
A silent killer lurks among us: the aortic aneurysm.
Through the services offered by FirstHealth Mobile Health
Services, an unexpected and potentially life-threatening
aneurysm was detected during my screening.
Literally, the aneurysm was approximately the size of a
golf ball on my iliac artery, which is normally only one-half
inch in diameter. Fortunately, mine was detected in time
and a stent was surgically installed to correct the problem.
As in my case, symptoms of the problem can be detected
only through the ultrasound screening process. Had the
aneurysm ruptured at any time prior to the operation, there
would not have been sufficient time to call 911 and receive
I have spoken to others who have related incidents of
friends and relatives who have succumbed to this silent
killer. I encourage everyone over the age of 60 who has
not been screened for some time to do so at the earliest
FirstHealth conducts regular screenings. Call the
Community Health Services department to make an
appointment for this life-saving procedure.
Preeminent health facility
My wife recently spent 11 days in FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital. I would like to
share with you how we felt about our experience at your facility.
From the first interaction with your staff in the Emergency Department to the care
provided by your Home Care services, we could not be more satisfied. Hospitalist Dr. Saul
Salvador in the Emergency Department was very attentive, concerned and professional
in his evaluation. Drs. Philip Mondi, David Hipp and Paul Jawanda were all thoughtful,
caring, discerning and knowledgeable in their treatment of my wife.
The staff assigned to her room was outstanding. Nurse Joyce Pate has certainly set a high
standard for nursing care. I can’t express my appreciation enough as to how she cared for
and supervised my wife’s treatment when she was on duty. We also appreciated Rebecca
Ainslie (from the Foundation of FirstHealth) who stopped by several times to see how we
After being discharged from the hospital, my wife was under the care of FirstHealth
Home Care for 13 days. Rick Varney was the first attending nurse who instructed me on
how to administer the antibiotic through the PIC line. The other nurses who provided
services to her were Linda Lively and Arnold Rohrs. All were very accommodating,
personal and professional.
Having served on boards and been in administrative positions, I know too well that the
accomplishments of personnel doing stellar duties are often not reported to the appropriate
administrator. Frequently, complaints overshadow the reports of outstanding service; thus,
the reason for this letter. How fortunate we are to have such a preeminent health facility
here in Pinehurst.
Thank you for
I would like to thank the many members of your organization who
recently provided superb care for my mother-in-law at FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital.
After an unpleasant episode that caused her to sustain a nasty forehead
gash, she was the recipient of great kindness and very prompt and thorough
care in your Emergency Department. After admission, she was made
comfortable and her care, as directed by the Hospitalist team, was truly
Would you pass on my thanks to Drs. Jonathan Brower (emergency) and
Patrick Simpson (cardiologist), both of whom were gracious enough to take
time to call me with explanations and reassuring updates?
I wish you success as you continue your mission. I was very impressed
with all aspects of your organization and I wish you the very best for the
Damian McHugh, M.D.,
Raleigh Emergency Medicine Associates at Rex Hospital
I am writing to express my sincere appreciation to the Intensive Care Unit
nurses of FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital who cared for my mother during
the final week of her life.
The nurses were compassionate and warm and helped my father, brother
and me come to terms with the most difficult decision we have ever faced. The
nurses who took care of my mother were Amanda Jefferies, Mandi Steed, Lisa
Oldham, Kristen Strother, Wendi Vercher and Amy Decker. Please convey my
warmest and most sincere thanks to each of them.
“So thankful” for new afib procedure
On Feb. 2, 2009, I entered FirstHealth Moore Regional
Hospital for heart surgery. I had been sick and out of work
(which is rare for me) since November 2008. I had a terrible
problem with atrial fibrillation. I was short of breath from
just a short walk and had gotten to the place where my heart
would actually stop and re-start itself. During the short time
my heart would stop, I would suffer passing-out-type spells.
This is a picture of me and my new granddaughter, who
was born April 30, 2009, to my oldest daughter, Melissa, and
her husband, Brenner McRae. I am so thankful to be healthy
once again and to be alive to enjoy my new granddaughter,
Sydney McRae, and her big brother, Brayden. I have two
other children, a daughter, Tricia, who is getting married
Aug. 1, 2009, and a son, Brent, who is entering college this
fall. I am so, so thankful that Dr. Landers and Dr. Kiser did
this amazing procedure, which has given me my life back and
allowed me to be here for my children and grandchildren.
My blood pressure was very high off and on. I had been on
numerous medications for the atrial fibrillation by my prior
cardiology group, and these medications made me deathly
sick. During November and December 2008, I was mostly
confined to bed.
I found out about a procedure that Dr. Andy Kiser and
Dr. Mark Landers perform. I contacted Dr. Kiser and Dr.
Landers in January 2009 and underwent several tests and was
scheduled for surgery—coronary ablation and Ex-Maze. I was
so happy to discover Dr. Kiser and Dr. Landers and this new
procedure, and I was actually their second patient (the first
from North Carolina) to have this procedure done.
It has (at this writing) been four months, and I have not
had any further heart problems, no atrial fibrillation at all. I
can walk and walk and not get short of breath anymore. My
blood pressure is very well controlled. I feel better than I have
felt in years.
I am very blessed and thankful for Dr. Kiser and Dr.
Landers. FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital is very
fortunate to have these doctors. Their staff was extremely
efficient and helped me so much in getting prepared for the
surgery as well as the ICU-Coronary Unit at the hospital.
Also, my primary care physician, Dr. Joseph Hunter, was so
wonderful in helping me with my recovery.
An asset to
Recently, I had a procedure performed in the Ultrasound
department at FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital. (Assistant
Director) Joey Philips informed me about what to expect and
techniques he would use to lessen the pain. It made the whole
experience more tolerable.
Mr. Phillips is quite an asset to FirstHealth with his knowledge
and kindness shown to the patients he cares for.
Thanks for the
In June 2008, I visited and stayed in the
Pinehurst area to play golf for a few days.
After playing 18 holes of golf the very first
day, I experienced back pain for several
hours. I felt it was not from the strain of
golf that day and suspected it might be a
kidney stone. I arrived at the Emergency
Department of Moore Regional Hospital
The nurses, technicians and doctors
on duty that night and into the morning
were so attentive and gave me great care.
Sometime during the night, I was given
pain medication and a scan. The scan did
not show a kidney stone, but did show a
small tumor on the top of my left kidney. I
was advised by the doctor to visit my family
doctor when I returned home. I completed
my golf trip and went home. My family
doctor sent me to a specialist. He ran me
through a few additional tests and indicated
that the tumor was probably cancerous. The
tumor was removed in October 2008 and
verified as cancer.
I am doing fine now and just wanted to
thank the doctors, nurses and technicians
who worked those two shifts on June 1 and
2, 2008, for their great work.
Prince George, Va.
P.S.: I was able to play 36 holes on Tuesday,
June 2, pain-free.
My wife and I are volunteers in the Pastoral Care department at
FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital. I have been a patient several times
in your hospital, but my last stay—for a knee revision—was outstanding,
beyond anyone’s expectations.
It started with their getting me ready in the Outpatient department and
into the holding area where my blood pressure was so low it caused everyone
concern. Everything went well, and Dr. John Moore, his physician assistant
and the entire surgical staff and the anesthetist couldn’t have been better.
Then came the recovery room, where they had trouble trying to get my
blood pressure up. I got concerned for my wife, so someone called and let
me talk to her. Everyone went out of their way to care for me.
The nurses and staff on 2C, wow, they really went out of their way, not
only for me, but also for my wife. Those nurses made sure my wife and I
were very well taken care of. My medicines and meals were always timely.
Of course, I have to say that Chaplin Beverly Jessup and the other clergy
volunteers looked after my spiritual needs each day I was there.
(At the time of this writing) I am being treated at home by your physical
therapists out of Rockingham, Bill Robins and Tanya Wilkerson. I believe
with their help I am making a great recovery.
Too often, we want to express our thanks and then get too busy and forget
to do it. The staff of people you have working for you, and the volunteers,
too, are the greatest in the world.