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Medical Center Primary Care Now Open, Accepting Patients

Monday, September 14, 2015

Commonwealth Health Corporation (CHC), parent company of The Medical Center, opened Medical Center Primary Care on September 1 to expand the availability of primary care physicians in Southcentral Kentucky. Medical Center Primary Care is located at 1901 Scottsville Road, across from Edmonton State Bank at light #5.

“An extreme shortage of physicians who specialize in internal medicine and family practice is affecting access to primary care services for patients in Southcentral Kentucky,” said Connie Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Health Corporation. Recent studies indicate that Bowling Green and surrounding communities have a combined need for up to 30 additional primary care physicians. “Primary care physicians play a vital role in the healthcare delivery system. They provide continuing care throughout a patient’s adult life, including diagnosis and treatment of acute illness, management of chronic conditions, preventive care such as screenings and immunizations, and coordination of care with specialists.”

The first physician to join Medical Center Primary Care is Mabel Alvarez, M.D. Dr. Alvarez completed her medical degree from Instituto Tecnologico de Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic. She completed residency programs at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami, Florida and Good Samaritan Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio. Most recently she was in private practice in New York, New York.

Rima Desai, M.D. will begin October 15. She earned her medical degree at Smt. N.H.L. Municipal Medical College in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India. She completed post graduate training in Internal Medicine at The Brooklyn Hospital Center in Brooklyn, New York. She relocates to Bowling Green from Bellevue, Kentucky where she practiced at Healthpoint Family Care.

A third physician, Maya Khoukaz, M.D., will join the practice in January 2016. Dr. Khoukaz earned her medical degree from American University of Beirut in Lebanon. She completed residency training at Saint Louis University in St. Louis, Missouri and Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. She presently works at Veterans Affairs in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

Medical Center Primary Care sees adult patients. Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information, call 270-901-0629.

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

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

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

Every year, more than 250,000 people experience a STEMI, or ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction, a type of heart attack caused by a complete 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 surgically opening the blocked vessel or by giving clot-busting medication.

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

Emergency Medical Service providers are vital to the success of Mission: Lifeline. EMS agencies provide access to 12-lead ECG machines (devices that measures the electrical activity of the heartbeat and can help medical personnel determine if a heart attack has occurred), and follow protocols derived from American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology guidelines. The correct tools and training allow EMS providers to rapidly identify the STEMI, promptly notify The Medical Center, and trigger an early response from the awaiting hospital personnel.

Agencies that receive the Mission: Lifeline Silver award have demonstrated at least 75 percent compliance for each required achievement measure for the entire year, and treat at least eight STEMI patients for the year.

“EMTs and paramedics play a vital part in the system of care for those who have heart attacks,” said Nancy Brown, Chief Executive Officer of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. “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 The 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 unit among the best in the country,” said Randy Fathbruckner, Director Medical Center EMS. “The American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline program is helping us accomplish that by implementing processes for improving STEMI systems of care with the goal of improving the quality of care for all STEMI patients. We are pleased to be recognized for our staff’s dedication and achievements in emergency medical care for STEMI patients.”

The Medical Center EMS is also one of only two emergency services in Kentucky accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Ambulance Services (CAAS). This means The Medical Center EMS meets a higher standard in the areas of training, safety and compliance requirements.

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 STEMI 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 and

The Medical Center Health & Wellness Center Receives Top Honors For Stroke Education and Prevention

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Norton Healthcare/UK HealthCare - Stroke Care Network has presented The Medical Center with the 2015 "Interstellar Award" for its work in improving stroke prevention and care for its patients. The Medical Center’s Health & Wellness Center screened and educated more than 600 children and adults about stroke, making its community outreach the highest in the Stroke Care Network.

At the Stroke Care Network’s annual summit, Dr. Michael Dobbs, Director of the Stroke Care Network, commended The Medical Center for outstanding work in educating their community about stroke prevention and care. "The Medical Center’s commitment to quality improvement and coordination of resources to provide their patients with the highest quality stroke care is to be commended," Dr. Dobbs said. "Everyone's goal is to provide the best care for stroke patients as close to home as possible and The Medical Center’s efforts embody that principle."

Bill Singletary, RN, The Medical Center’s Director of Care Coordination and Stroke Program Coordinator, said, “The Medical Center’s Health & Wellness team, led by Director Jenny Golden, truly exemplifies our mission to care for people and improve the quality of life in the communities we serve. Using evidence-based educational and screening resources for adults and children, their focus is on stroke awareness, personalized risk assessments, stroke prevention strategies, prompt recognition of the signs and symptoms of stroke and activation of 9-1-1 at the first sign of a stroke. As a certified Primary Stroke Center, we are so proud that our Health & Wellness Center team has been recognized for their commitment to stroke education, community outreach, and saving lives.”

The Stroke Care Network’s Director of education and quality, Lisa Bellamy, RN, CPHQ, notes that The Medical Center has made enormous strides in community education related to stroke prevention, recognition and treatment. “The Medical Center already had a well-established community outreach program, but when they joined the Network they enhanced their current process with the Network’s Stroke Community, Outreach, Prevention and Education (SCOPE) program. The SCOPE program offers three approaches to educate citizens about stroke: Stroke Screenings, Adult lectures and a pediatric program called The Brain Protector program.”

“The Medical Center has demonstrated a strong commitment to their community through affording dedicated resources to their outreach program,” Bellamy continued. “Despite being one of the newest hospitals in the Stroke Care Network, the Health & Wellness Center exceeded all other affiliates in the Network with regards to the number of individuals screened and educated about stroke during the last year.”

As an affiliate in the Stroke Care Network, The Medical Center has direct access to Norton Healthcare and UK HealthCare’s expertise and resources to support ongoing efforts locally to provide the best care for stroke for their citizens.

If you would like to schedule a SCOPE program activity or other health education event, please contact The Medical Center Health & Wellness Center at 270-745-0942 or 877-800-3824.

Caverna Memorial Hospital Set to Join The Medical Center

Monday, August 24, 2015

Caverna Memorial Hospital, which has served the citizens of Hart and surrounding counties since 1967, will become The Medical Center at Caverna in a move announced today by the hospital and The Medical Center in Bowling Green. The boards of directors for Caverna Memorial Hospital and The Medical Center have agreed to the acquisition by the Bowling Green – Warren County Community Hospital Corporation d/b/a The Medical Center and the transaction should be completed by the end of 2015. With the addition of Caverna Memorial Hospital to its family of hospitals, Commonwealth Health Corporation (CHC), the parent company of The Medical Center, will operate five acute care hospitals in Southcentral Kentucky and will employ over 3,300 healthcare workers with a medical staff that includes over 300 physicians.

Caverna Memorial Hospital is a 25-bed, not-for-profit critical access hospital which has remained an independent hospital since it was established by local residents 48 years ago. “Significant regulatory changes brought about by the Affordable Care Act and payment reform at the federal and state level make it increasingly difficult for small rural hospitals to remain independent,” said Alan Alexander, Chief Executive Officer of Caverna Memorial Hospital. “We are very proud of our heritage at Caverna Memorial Hospital and becoming a part of The Medical Center will allow us to raise the bar even further in terms of quality healthcare and expand our services to the community,” added Alexander.

The Medical Center is a 337-bed, not-for-profit regional referral hospital located in Bowling Green. “We are honored to have been invited into the Hart County community by the board of directors and management team of Caverna Memorial Hospital,” stated Connie Smith, President and CEO of The Medical Center and CHC. “I am so impressed with the staff I have met at the hospital. Their dedication and commitment to patients is evident in all that they do. Together, we will further our mission to care for people and improve the quality of life in the communities we serve,” added Smith.

Opening of Medical Center Orthopaedics Expands Access to Orthopaedic Services

Friday, May 1, 2015

Commonwealth Health Corporation (CHC), parent company of The Medical Center, and UK HealthCare celebrated the opening of Medical Center Orthopaedics, Southcentral Kentucky’s new orthopaedic surgery practice, with a Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting on Thursday, April 30. The Medical Center created the new physician practice in affiliation with UK HealthCare Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine to expand availability of orthopaedic surgeons in Southcentral Kentucky.

Orthopaedics is one of the fastest growing service lines in the country. National models predict a 15% increase in Orthopaedics over the next few years.

“For years, Orthopaedics has been a significant part of The Medical Center. Patients have made it clear that they want a choice and they want to receive their orthopaedic care at The Medical Center,” said Connie Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Health Corporation. “To facilitate the expansion of Orthopaedics, The Medical Center has partnered with UK HealthCare. UK has an excellent reputation in Orthopaedics, and we feel that combining that reputation with The Medical Center made sense.”

The first physician recruited to the practice is Rasesh Desai, M.D., F.A.A.O.S., orthopaedic surgeon and assistant professor with UK HealthCare Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine. Dr. Desai’s extensive fellowship training includes Orthopaedic Spine at University of Louisville, Pediatric Orthopaedic and Pediatric Spine at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, and Adult Reconstructive (Total Joints) Orthopaedics at University of Louisville.

"The recruitment of Dr. Desai onto our faculty and into the Bowling Green community represents just the first investment in new models of care by two strong healthcare systems, UK HealthCare and The Medical Center," said Dr. Michael Karpf, Executive Vice President for Health Affairs at the University of Kentucky. "Our relationship in orthopaedics and also stroke care will allow UK HealthCare and The Medical Center to provide advanced medicine for Kentuckians as close to home as possible, in the most appropriate setting." In 2014, The Medical Center joined the Norton Healthcare/UK HealthCare Stroke Care Network to allow for the sharing of best practices and outcomes data to promote continuous quality improvement in stroke care.

Medical Center Orthopaedics is located in the Riverside Professional Center on The Medical Center campus. To learn more, visit To schedule an appointment, call Medical Center Orthopaedics at 270-780-2750.