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  • Shane, who had craniosynostosis

    A Fused Skull Prevented Shane's Brain from Growing Naturally

    "When Shane went to his first checkup with the pediatrician, she touched his head, and she told us, 'I think the skull is fused,'" Gretel, Shane's mother, shared.

    "The bones of the skull had fused too early," said Dean Hertzler, MD, Chief of Pediatric Neurosurgery, Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital. "So it kept the skull from separating and growing."

    Shane was born with craniosynostosis, and Dr. Hertzler said it would take an expert team to do the technically complex surgery.

    "Think of it like bread in a breadbox where the bread is trying to expand, but the breadbox is too small," said Eric Stelnicki, MD, Pediatric Plastic Surgery, Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital.

    "Together, we were able to unfuse the skull," said Dr. Stelnicki. "We had to basically break the skull into hundreds of pieces and put the puzzle back together."

    Today, Shane is growing, and so is his brain. Gretel wasn't ready for the complicated surgery as a mother, but after meeting both doctors, she said, "They were so friendly and helpful. That mix of compassion and scientific know-how—I felt as confident as a mother could be."

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  • scott wester new memorial healthcare system ceo

    South Broward Hospital District Board of Commissioners Selects K. Scott Wester, FACHE, as New President and Chief Executive Officer for Memorial Healthcare System

    The South Broward Hospital District Board of Commissioners has chosen K. Scott Wester, FACHE, as Memorial Healthcare System’s President and Chief Executive Officer. Wester recently served as Executive Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and Advocacy for Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System in Baton Rouge, La. He succeeds Aurelio M. Fernandez, III, FACHE, who retired in May 2022. Wester is scheduled to start on July 5, 2022.

    The Board of Commissioners, who oversee all actions of Memorial Healthcare System, worked with the executive search firm WittKieffer to recruit nationally for a new president and CEO for Memorial. Wester’s impressive 30-year healthcare career and expertise in healthcare management and operations, finance, academia, philanthropy, and ability to build successful partnerships, among other attributes, made him the best choice to lead Memorial.

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    “We are excited about the future and the impact Scott will have at Memorial and in this community. His expertise, approachable leadership style, and overall knowledge and understanding of our industry and community will help him lead this organization to greater heights,” said Douglas A. Harrison, Chair, South Broward Hospital District Board of Commissioners. “We welcome Scott and look forward to working with him.”

    In his previous position, Wester led a historic $250 million partnership with Louisiana State University and Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center that involved graduate medical education, research, interdisciplinary sciences and created greater alignment and workforce development. This included building a career pathway within the East Baton Rouge School System to prepare students for healthcare careers upon high school graduation and a partnership with Baton Rouge Community College to double its healthcare career enrollment.

    Wester also served as president and Chief Executive Officer for Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center in Baton Rouge for 14 years (2008-2022). During his tenure, he grew the Center’s revenue from $500 million to $1.6 billion; raised more than $55 million in capital campaign dollars that were used to build a free-standing children’s hospital; recruited over 400 physicians; received Magnet designation three times, and led the transition from a community-based hospital to a nationally recognized major academic teaching hospital under a complex agreement with Louisiana State University School of Medicine and the State of Louisiana. He also had oversight of business development, advocacy, and strategic partnerships, which resulted in multiple acquisitions of acute and surgical facilities, affiliations to increase cancer care, pediatric and women services within the health system. Additionally, Wester facilitated Medicaid supplemental payments for hospitals and employed physician groups with the State of Louisiana.

    A magna cum laude graduate of Saint Louis University with bachelor’s degrees in chemistry and classical humanities, Wester went on to earn his master’s of hospital and health administration (MHA) from Xavier University in Cincinnati. He is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare, which awarded him its Regent’s Award in 2020, and he has served in numerous civic organizations.

    Wester was attracted to Memorial because of its culture and employees. “I felt a consistency of culture and community dedication from every person I met at Memorial during my interviews,” said Wester. “I look forward to applying the tools I have gathered in my 30-year career to help propel this organization and work closely with Memorial’s workforce and other stakeholders to achieve the best for all.”

  • jdch new cardiac physicians drs. dentel, forbes, klein, guyon 2022

    Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Expands Cardiac Program

    Dr. Thomas Forbes, an interventional cardiologist, has joined Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital as its chief of Pediatric Cardiac Services. Forbes, previously at Detroit Medical Center in Michigan, is leading an expanding roster of cardiac specialists as the Hollywood-based children’s facility significantly increases its size and capabilities while it adds four floors to the existing hospital building.

    Forbes is an active researcher and teacher that received fellowship training at Baylor University’s College of Medicine. Recently, he collaborated with Memorial Cardiac and Vascular Institute to repair a sinus venosus atrial septal defect in an adult patient using stents in a transcatheter procedure. It is believed this is the first time this approach has been used in Florida to repair an issue previously only fixable through open-heart surgery.

    In addition to Dr. Forbes, Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Heart Institute, one of the top pediatric heart programs in the country, has added three other fellowship-trained physicians:

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    • Dr. Peter Guyon was part of the aforementioned procedure to repair the patient’s congenital heart defect. He was most recently at Rady Children’s Hospital and the University of California San Diego, where he completed a fellowship in pediatric cardiology. He specializes in interventional cardiology and earned his M.D. at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.
    • Dr. Jared Klein is a cardiac imaging specialist, focusing on both echocardiography and MRI. His advanced training in those areas came at Nemours Children’s Health in Delaware and Ohio’s Cleveland Clinic Hospital. He is a second-generation cardiologist.
    • Dr. John Dentel is a cardiac surgeon that completed fellowships at Washington University/Seattle Children’s Hospital (congenital cardiac surgery) and Indiana University (cardiothoracic surgery).

    The four doctors are members of the Memorial Physician Group and have joined the existing team of experts who offer a full range of congenital heart care, including heart transplantation. They will soon treat patients on a floor dedicated exclusively to cardiology when the expanded Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital opens later this year. The sixth floor will add a perioperative area for surgery patients, 20 intensive care beds, an operating room, a hybrid operating room, two catheterization labs, and procedure rooms with electrophysiology and interventional radiology capabilities. The new space will provide clinical teams a seamless environment to collaborate and efficiently care for critically-ill children, including those waiting for or recovering from a transplant.

    Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital has been included among the nation’s top 50 for cardiology and heart surgery in the 2021-22 ranking of best children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report.