DCH News

Awards & Recognitions

Organ donors, their families honored at Driscoll ceremony

November 19, 2012
Dr. Karl Serrao, critical care intensivist, speaks to families of organ donors at a ceremony honoring them and their loved ones Nov. 10 at Driscoll Children's Hospital.
Dr. Karl Serrao, critical care intensivist, speaks to families of organ donors at a ceremony honoring them and their loved ones Nov. 10 at Driscoll Children's Hospital.
CORPUS CHRISTI - The families of children whose organs were donated so that others may live were honored at a poignant ceremony Nov. 10 at Driscoll Children's Hospital. More than 100 people, including families, Driscoll leaders, physicians and other healthcare professionals, gathered in the auditorium to commemorate the lives of the donors.

"It is essential to recognize these children who became organ donors and their families who allowed this gift to happen," said Karl Serrao, MD, critical care intensivist at Driscoll. "The donors have left a lasting and indelible legacy and we at Driscoll Children's Hospital want to celebrate with the families. These organ donors are heroes, as they are saving lives."

As of Nov. 14, 10 donors at Driscoll Children's Hospital have saved the lives of more than 40 other people, Dr. Serrao said.

This was Driscoll's second ceremony honoring organ donors and their families. In 2010, a ceremony was held to unveil the hospital's Organ Donor Wall, on which the names of the donors are inscribed on floating dandelion seeds. Dr. Serrao said he hopes to have an organ donor ceremony annually and raise awareness in the community about the importance of organ donation.

"We want to encourage everyone to be inspired by these children and their families to become a registered donor."

Those who wish to become organ donors can register at www.donatelifetexas.org, Dr. Serrao added.

Hopkins shares facial reconstruction knowledge at conference

October 17, 2012
CORPUS CHRISTI - Kevin S. Hopkins, MD, FACS, Craniofacial/Plastic Surgeon at Driscoll Children's Hospital, was a session moderator and speaker Oct. 5-7 at the 10th Annual International Federation for Adipose Therapeutics and Science (IFATS) 2012 Conference in Quebec City, Canada. The conference focused on scientific studies involving fat and fat-derived stem cells for cutting-edge clinical applications and tissue engineering. Dr. Hopkins presented a clinical paper on his experience using a patient's own fat for reconstructive procedures he has performed on children with congenital craniofacial, cleft lip/palate, burns and traumatic deformities. Dr. Hopkins has been practicing at Driscoll Children's Hospital since 2001.

Almond named president-elect of Transplantation Society

September 21, 2012
CORPUS CHRISTI - Stephen Almond, MD, chief of Pediatric Surgery, Urology and Transplantation at Driscoll Children's Hospital, was recently named president-elect of the Texas Transplantation Society (TTS) at their annual meeting in Galveston. The TTS is a professional association founded in 1987 to facilitate transplantation within the state of Texas. Their mission is to advance transplantation and organ donation through education and advocacy with a unified and authoritative voice.

Research by Driscoll residents & physicians gains national, international recognition

June 22, 2012
CORPUS CHRISTI - An abstract written by Driscoll Children's Hospital resident Sanjeet Panda, MD and co-authored by Driscoll physicians Stephen Almond, MD, Mohammad Emran, MD, Haroon Patel, MD, Juan Prieto, MD and Leon Smith-Harrison, MD has been accepted for presentation at the 2012 American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans Oct. 20-23 and the XVII Ibero-American Society for Pediatric Urology Meeting Sept. 4-8 in Cartagena, Colombia. Research for Dr. Panda's abstract, titled "Surgical Management for the Palpable Undescended Testicle: Scrotal or Inguinal Approach?," was conducted at Driscoll Children's Hospital.

Dr. Panda, Driscoll resident Grace Lucas, MD and Dr. Prieto also collaborated on two abstracts, "Scrotal Approach for Definitive Management of Cryptorchidism and Communicating Hydrocele in Children" and "Effects of Urethroplasty Suturing Technique in Primary Tubularized Incised Plate (TIP) Hypospadias Repair," both of which have been accepted for presentation at the 91st annual meeting of the South Central Section- American Urological Association Oct. 24-27 in Colorado Springs, Colo., as well as the XVII Ibero-American Society for Pediatric Urology Meeting in Cartagena.

In addition, Driscoll resident Karen Tuano, MD was named the first place winner in the 2012 Texas Pediatric Society Fellow and Resident Poster Contest for her poster in the Evidence Based Medicine/Quality of Improvement category, titled "Preliminary Study on Control of Asthma in Children 6-11 Years Old Who Visit the Emergency Department at Driscoll Children's Hospital." Residents Monika Bhagat, MD, Mavie Narcise, MD and Shuya Wu, MD were contributors to the project. Also, resident Devasena Iyer, MD received second place for her poster in the same category, titled "WAT-1 vs. SOS: Determination of Iatrogenic Withdrawal in the ICU, a Pilot Study." Driscoll physician Kevin Schooler, MD, PhD served as Dr. Iyer's advisor.

Moreida earns orthopedic specialist certification

June 22, 2012
CORPUS CHRISTI - Frank Moreida, a physical therapist in Driscoll Children's Hospital's Rehabilitation Services Department, recently passed an examination administered by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties and became certified as an orthopedic specialist. Moreida, a former high school teacher and athletic coach, is using his expertise to help develop a pediatric sports medicine program at Driscoll to serve young athletes in the Coastal Bend.

Driscoll volunteer chosen from 1,500 for statewide award

June 13, 2012
Richard 'Dick' Hinman has brought smiles to children for 18 years

CORPUS CHRISTI - When it comes to receiving awards for exceptional service as a volunteer, Richard "Dick" Hinman thinks there's one person who doesn't deserve one: himself. Despite his belief, Hinman, a volunteer at Driscoll Children's Hospital, has been chosen from about 1,500 nominees as the first statewide recipient of the Home Instead Senior Care's Salute to Senior Service Award. The award will be presented to him at 9:30 a.m. Thursday in Driscoll's cardiology conference room.

"I'm flattered, but we have an awful lot of volunteers here who are more deserving than I am," said Hinman, 81, who has been a member of the Auxiliary to Driscoll Children's Hospital since 1994.

Hinman was first chosen as the winner of Home Instead's local award and just recently learned that he is the statewide winner. The organization's Salute to Senior Service Award program is designed to recognize retired senior volunteers who make a difference every day in their communities.

"These unsung heroes are making a bigger impact than ever as local budgets evaporate and community needs escalate," said Dr. M. Retta Martin of Home Instead Senior Care in Corpus Christi, who helped select Hinman for the award. "Dick's longevity as a volunteer made him stand out, as did the fact that he almost does it full time. We know that without volunteers, many organizations couldn't do what they do."

Hinman said with a laugh that he may cut back his volunteer hours to 25 or 30 hours a week. In total, he has given more than 29,000 hours of volunteer service at Driscoll - equaling more than 1,600 hours a year.

But the retired petrochemical worker and engineering specialist is having too much fun. He maintains an infectious smile at Driscoll Children's Hospital and is known for cheering up patients with stories, antics and magic tricks.

"I've been told I'm in my second childhood," Hinman said. "But I don't think I ever left my first childhood. I'm just a big kid."

While the services of all of Driscoll's volunteers are equally appreciated and valued, Hinman's rapport with children is something special, said Lizette Saenz, director of Volunteer Services.

"Dick is deserving of the Salute to Senior Service Award for so many reasons. He makes the hospital experience pleasant and sometimes even fun for the children he encounters. At the same time, he genuinely cares about the patients and respects them and their families."

With characteristic humility, Hinman said the smile of a child is the only reward he needs for his 18 years of service at Driscoll Children's Hospital.

"When a parent says to me, 'That's the first time my son or daughter has smiled in a long time,' that's a pretty big paycheck."

What: Home Instead Senior Care's Salute to Senior Service Award presentation for Richard "Dick" Hinman
When: 9:30 a.m. Thursday, June 14
Where: Driscoll Children's Hospital, cardiology conference room, 2nd floor, 3533 S. Alameda St.

Ribbon-cutting ceremony held naming building in honor of champion of children's healthcare

June 04, 2012
Cutting the ribbon for the C. Ivan Wilson Patient Support Center June 4 were (from left) Steve Woerner, Driscoll president & CEO; Joe Fulton, Driscoll Foundation trustee; Lenora Keas, Driscoll Children's Hospital governing board member; Loyd Neal, chairman of the governing board; Sam L. Susser, president & CEO of Susser Holdings Corp. & Driscoll Foundation trustee; C. Ivan Wilson, governing board member; his wife, Lola Wilson; and Corpus Christi Mayor Joe Adame.
Cutting the ribbon for the C. Ivan Wilson Patient Support Center June 4 were (from left) Steve Woerner, Driscoll president & CEO; Joe Fulton, Driscoll Foundation trustee; Lenora Keas, Driscoll Children's Hospital governing board member; Loyd Neal, chairman of the governing board; Sam L. Susser, president & CEO of Susser Holdings Corp. & Driscoll Foundation trustee; C. Ivan Wilson, governing board member; his wife, Lola Wilson; and Corpus Christi Mayor Joe Adame.
C. Ivan Wilson Patient Support Center was renovated by Driscoll Children's Hospital

CORPUS CHRISTI - A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held today at Driscoll Children's Hospital's newly renovated C. Ivan Wilson Patient Support Center. Attendees saw beautifully landscaped grounds, freshly painted, tan stucco exterior walls with blue and brown trim and a shaded, covered entrance. Driscoll officials were joined by Corpus Christi Mayor Joe Adame, Loyd Neal and C. Ivan Wilson for the ceremony, which included the unveiling of a bronze bust of Wilson that is displayed in the foyer.

The building is a fitting testament to the man who has been actively involved with Driscoll Children's Hospital for decades, said Steve Woerner, Driscoll president and chief executive officer.

"Ivan has been an instrumental part of the Driscoll team for 30 years. Our organization has flourished due in large part to his selfless efforts. He has never lost sight of Driscoll's mission - to offer hope and healing to children in an environment of trust, compassion and care."

Wilson became a trustee of the Robert Driscoll and Julia Driscoll and Robert Driscoll Jr. Foundation in 1982 and a member of the hospital's governing board in 1983. He has served as treasurer of the board and was its chairman from January 2001 to September 2011. He remains a board member. Wilson has long been a champion of high-quality healthcare for the children of South Texas, and his dedication to Driscoll has inspired many people.

The C. Ivan Wilson Patient Support Center was formerly a synagogue. Renovation of the 13,700 square-foot building began in August 2011. Marble flooring in the entryway, high ceilings and solid wood paneling are some of its new features. Once all renovations are complete, Driscoll will provide a variety of patient support services in the building.

What: Ribbon-cutting ceremony for the C. Ivan Wilson Patient Support Center at Driscoll Children's Hospital
When: 10 a.m. Monday, June 4
Where: 3434 Fort Worth St. (next to the Ronald McDonald House behind Driscoll Children's Hospital, 3533 S. Alameda St.)

Ribbon cutting for C. Ivan Wilson Patient Support Center will be June 4

June 01, 2012

WHAT: Driscoll Children's Hospital officials will be joined by local dignitaries for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the newly renovated C. Ivan Wilson Patient Support Center. The event will include the unveiling of a surprise tribute to Wilson.

WHEN: 10 a.m. Monday, June 4

WHERE: 3434 Fort Worth St. (next to the Ronald McDonald House behind Driscoll Children's Hospital, 3533 S. Alameda St.)

Driscoll Children's Hospital achieves Joint Commission accreditation with flying colors

May 29, 2012
CORPUS CHRISTI - Driscoll Children's Hospital has earned the Joint Commission's Gold Seal of Approval for accreditation by demonstrating compliance with the organization's national standards for healthcare quality and safety in hospitals. The accreditation award recognizes the hospital's dedication to continuous compliance with the Joint Commission's state-of-the-art standards.

Driscoll underwent a rigorous, unannounced, on-site survey in April. A team of Joint Commission expert surveyors evaluated the hospital for compliance with standards of care specific to the needs of patients, including infection prevention and control, leadership and medication management.

"In achieving Joint Commission accreditation, Driscoll Children's Hospital has demonstrated its commitment to the highest level of care for its patients," said Mark Pelletier, RN, MS, executive director, Hospital Programs, Accreditation and Certification Services for the Joint Commission. "Accreditation is a voluntary process and I commend Driscoll for successfully undertaking this challenge to elevate its standard of care and instill confidence in the community it serves."

Joint Commission accreditation reflects Driscoll's investment in quality on a day-to-day basis and helps the hospital further pursue a culture of excellence, said Donna Quinn, Driscoll vice president of Operations & Quality.

"To be re accredited speaks to the quality of care and service we provide to our patients and pride in what we do."

The Joint Commission's hospital standards address important functions relating to the care of patients and the management of hospitals. The standards are developed in consultation with healthcare experts, providers, measurement experts and patients.

Driscoll's child abuse team receives $280,000 state grant

May 29, 2012

CORPUS CHRISTI - This month, Nancy Harper, MD and Sonja Eddleman, RN, both with the Child Abuse Resource and Evaluation (CARE) Team at Driscoll Children's Hospital, received a $280,000 grant through the Texas Medical Child Abuse Resources and Education System (MEDCARES) Grant Program. The funds will be dedicated to the CARE Team's efforts to assess, diagnose and provide treatment for children suffering from abuse and neglect in Driscoll's service area of 31 South Texas counties.

"The grant has enabled the CARE Team to expand services and hire a second physician trained in child abuse pediatrics," said Dr. Harper, medical director of the CARE Team. "It has allowed us to take our mission further into the communities of South Texas where there are high rates of poverty and child maltreatment to ensure more accurate identification of neglect or abuse. The CARE Team also emphasizes through strengthened investigation the importance of recognizing when a child's injuries are not the result of maltreatment."

The MEDCARES Grant Program was established by the Texas legislature in 2008. Its purpose is to fund development and support regional programs that address child abuse and neglect. The grants are earmarked for hospitals or academic health centers with expertise in pediatric healthcare and a demonstrated commitment to developing basic programs in the field.

Eddleman, clinical coordinator for the CARE Team, is one of nine appointed members of the MEDCARES Advisory Committee. The role of the committee is to advise the Texas Department of State Health Services and the Health and Human Services Commission's executive commissioner in establishing rules and priorities for the use of MEDCARES grant funds.