News & Events
St. James Hospital Pauses Non-Essential Procedures in Response to Governor Hochul’s Mandate
Wednesday, December 1, 2021
In response to an executive order signed by Governor Kathy Hochul which takes effect this Friday to boost inpatient capacity, St. James Hospital has temporarily paused elective surgical procedures and will review the situation on a weekly basis. St. James has recently added surge beds to meet the high demand of admissions.
“We have been running at well over 100% inpatient capacity for several weeks,” said Dr. Bilal Ahmed, St. James Hospital chief medical officer. “The vast majority of the COVID-positive inpatients are unvaccinated, and are seriously ill by the time they arrive at our emergency department and need to be admitted.”
Although St. James is taking this action to be in compliance with the Governor’s mandate, the hospital will continue to do emergency and urgent surgeries.
“The determination of the urgency of surgery is up to the discretion of the surgeon, in collaboration with the patient’s clinical team,” said Dr. Bilal. “We will evaluate frequently and adjust as our inpatient volumes and capacity fluctuate. Our goal and plan is to return to normal operations as soon as circumstances and resources allow.”
Bryan O’Donovan, St. James Hospital president and CEO, commends his team for their extraordinary efforts.
“For the last twenty months, everyone at St. James has done an exemplary job of responding to new mandates, COVID surges, and staffing challenges,” he said. “We are so grateful for their dedication to our patients and the community.”
St. James Hospital Seeing Highest Number of COVID Cases Since the Start of the Pandemic
Friday, November 19, 2021
St. James Hospital officials are concerned about the rising number of COVID cases, and urge the community to take precautions as the holiday season ramps up.
“This is the worst surge we have seen since the start of the pandemic,” said Bryan O’Donovan, SJH president and CEO. “The numbers keep growing, including inpatients in our hospital and those seeking care in the emergency department, urgent care, and primary care.”
“This is the time of year we normally see an increase in respiratory illness,” said Wen Zhang, MD and SJH chief of emergency services, “but we are very concerned about the unusually high number of respiratory patients who are COVID positive. In addition, patients are delaying their care and arriving at the hospital and clinics much sicker than usual.”
Dr. Zhang urges the public to continue taking precautions and to stay in touch with their healthcare provider regarding any respiratory illness or complications.
“With the holidays coming up, this surge has the potential to skyrocket,” said Dr. Zhang. “We ask people to protect themselves – wear a mask in public places, avoid large indoor gatherings, wash your hands frequently, and get the flu shot and COVID vaccine (or booster). Anyone with respiratory illness should contact their primary care provider for guidance.”
O’Donovan encourages the public to take advantage of local COVID vaccine and rapid testing clinics, as the hospital does not offer walk-in or asymptomatic COVID testing unless the patient’s care provider orders it.
He also continues to praise his team for their commitment and service to the community.
“We’re going on two years since the start of the pandemic, and are so grateful for our dedicated and excellent healthcare team,” he said. “It’s been challenging covering all areas but our team members have stepped up to assist wherever needed. We thank each and every one of them for their dedication and support.”
Because wait times in the SJH emergency department and urgent care have increased, O’Donovan also asked for the public’s patience during the surge.
“We are making every effort to minimize the wait times in our clinics, and we thank people in advance for their understanding during this extremely busy time,” he said.
City of Hornell Offers Rapid COVID-19 Testing
Monday, October 25, 2021
As COVID-19 cases continue to rise locally and the need for health care and testing increases, City of Hornell Mayor John Buckley today, announced that the City of Hornell will be partnering with Steuben County Public Health to offer COVID-19 rapid testing at the Hornell Community Arts Center next week.
“Our health care workers are doing everything they can to keep our community safe and healthy, with the recent rise in cases they need to be able to focus on patient care,” said Mayor John Buckley. “I am proud to be able to take some of the burden off from them, by offering an additional testing location here in the city”.
Testing will be available to the public on Wednesday, October 27th from 1pm to 5pm and on Friday, October 29th from 9am to 1 pm, at the Hornell Community Arts Center, 58 Broadway Mall, no appointment is necessary. Residents are asked to wear a mask at all times and remain onsite for approximately ten (10) minutes.
“We applaud and fully support this effort to keep our community safe,” said Bryan O’Donovan, St. James Hospital president and CEO. “We have treated many COVID patients at the hospital recently, and anything we can do to identify infected cases early will help slow down transmission of the virus”.
Test kits will be provided by Steuben County Public Health, with testing to be administered by the Hornell Fire Department. The City of Hornell successfully partnered with Steuben County Public Health earlier this year to offer a vaccine clinic at the same location.
“Steuben County is again pleased to partner with the City of Hornell on this testing program,” said Steuben County Manager Jack Wheeler. “Mayor Buckley, Chief Brzozowski, and their entire team have been incredibly supportive in all of our collective COVID-19 response efforts, and we again thank them for their hard work and dedication.”
All residents should monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills or repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and new loss of taste or smell and contact their healthcare provider for instructions if feeling ill.
Anyone in need of testing on the above dates is strongly encouraged to visit the Hornell Community Arts Center at 58 Broadway Mall. For more information please call (607) 324-2100.
“I am very thankful to our partners at the County for providing the test kits, allowing us to open this testing site,” said Mayor John Buckley. “It will take all of us working together to keep our community safe and healthy, and to keep the stress off our healthcare system.”
St. James Hospital Reports Record COVID Admissions
Monday, October 25, 2021
Officials Urge the Public to Take All Precautions
St. James Hospital reported a record high number of COVID inpatients, and urges the community to continue taking all precautions to stay safe.
“As of Friday, seventy percent of our inpatient beds were occupied by COVID-positive patients, the most since the start of the pandemic,” said Bryan O’Donovan, SJH president and CEO. “We also are seeing record numbers of patients seeking care in our Urgent Care center, Primary Care clinic, and Emergency department.”
SJH officials are concerned about the recent increase.
“Normally we see a surge in respiratory illness in the fall with the return to school,” said Bilal Ahmed, MD and SJH chief medical officer. “This year has been particularly alarming, as a growing percentage of all respiratory illness is COVID positive and patients are coming into our clinics much sicker than usual.”
Dr. Ahmed urges the public to continue taking precautions and not to delay seeking care.
“Even though we all are feeling ‘pandemic burnout’, it’s still important to protect yourself,” he said. “Wear a mask in public places, wash your hands frequently, get your flu shot, and get the COVID vaccine and/or the booster. The vast majority of our COVID inpatients are unvaccinated. Most importantly, don’t delay seeking care if you have symptoms and stay in touch with your primary care provider.”
County and city officials have recently opened COVID testing services and SJH leadership is grateful for the collaborative efforts. SJH does not offer walk-in or asymptomatic testing unless the provider determines there is a need.
O’Donovan commends the SJH team members for their commitment to the community and the hospital throughout the pandemic.
“We have a dedicated and excellent team, both in clinical and non-clinical areas,” he said. “Many of our team members have recently worked extra shifts and covered in departments that are short-handed. They clearly demonstrate their commitment to keeping our community safe, and we thank each and every one of them for their dedication and support.
O’Donovan also expressed gratitude to community members for their ongoing support, and for their patience when visiting SJH clinics, as the hospital is experiencing significantly high volumes due to the pandemic.
Low Dose Lung Cancer Screening Now Available at UR Medicine Southern Tier Hospitals
Thursday, September 30, 2021
Catching cancer early is the best chance to have a positive outcome. That’s why Noyes Memorial Hospital in Dansville and St. James Hospital in Hornell are excited to announce the addition of a state-of-the-art low-dose lung cancer screening program. Patients can schedule appointments immediately in Dansville and Hornell. The program will expand to Jones Hospital in Wellsville in early 2022.
What is a low dose CT Scan?
The low-dose CT scan uses x-rays to create detailed 3-dimensional photos of your lungs. A minimal amount of radiation is used for this test compared to some other diagnostic CT studies. For this painless test, patients will lay on a table as it passes through the CT scanner. The scans are read by a University of Rochester radiologist.
Who should get screened?
You, or a loved one, should be screened if you meet the following criteria:
- Are age 50-80
- Are a current smoker or have quit in the past 15 years
- Have at least a 20 pack-year history of smoking. A pack-year is 1 pack of cigarettes per day per year. So, 1 pack per day for 20 years or 2 packs per day for 10 years would both be 20 pack-years.
"We are thrilled to be able to offer this program and testing at Noyes,” said Dr. J. Chad Teeters, president and CEO of Noyes Health. “Livingston and Steuben Counties have some of the highest smoking rates in New York State. It is important to catch cancer early to assure the best possible outcome. The addition of the low-dose lung screening program is a large step toward that goal.”
“Our objective is to increase access to vital diagnostic services within our communities,” said Bryan O’Donovan, St. James Hospital president and CEO. “We are delighted that through our collaboration with UR Medicine, patients can now attain this simple, life-saving screening in Dansville and Hornell.”
"Community Wellness has long been a key component of preventative medicine at Jones Memorial Hospital,” said James Helms, CEO at Jones. “With a smoking rate that exceeds the state average, we continue to encourage our community to stop smoking, however we are excited to begin offering this lifesaving screening right here in Allegany County beginning early next year. Bringing the services our community needs closer to home is one of the many benefits of being part of the UR Medicine system.”
To schedule your screening, call (877) 728-4543 or talk to your healthcare provider. For more information, visit lungcancerscreening.urmc.edu.
St. James Hospital Starts Construction of Enclosed Walkway and Patio
Wednesday, September 15, 2021
Funds Made Possible Through Capital Campaign
St. James Hospital has begun construction on two ancillary projects made possible by completion of a capital campaign launched in 2019.
The projects include an enclosed walkway that connects the new Hospital with the Medical Office Building and an outdoor patio courtyard for patients and visitors. These projects were funded through a $1.5 million capital campaign, separate from the $55 million New York State funding to build the new Hospital.
“Our goal is to provide patient-centered care in a convenient, comfortable setting,” said Bryan O’Donovan, St. James president and CEO. “These two capital projects will further enhance the patient and visitor experience, and we are excited to begin construction.”
The 70’ by 10’ enclosed walkway will allow patients, visitors and staff to safely and comfortably travel between the Medical Office Building and Hospital, without stepping outside. The 1,600 ft² patio courtyard will be accessible from the Hospital café and equipped with comfortable, well-spaced seating for up to sixty people, with bluestone pavers and decorative planters.
Pete Wall, St. James capital campaign committee chair, said, “Community members and organizations provided tremendous support for these projects. We were fortunate to receive major donations from several key donors and foundations, as well as many individual gifts from friends of St. James Hospital.”
Construction has begun on the patio courtyard, and construction on the covered walkway will begin in the fall. Both projects are slated to be completed by early 2022.
Left to right: rendering of new outdoor patio courtyard, rendering of the outside of new enclosed walkway, rendering of inside of new enclosed walkway.
St. James Hospital Welcomes New Sports Medicine Physician
Wednesday, September 8, 2021
Sports medicine specialist Andrew Wilhelm, DO, DPT, MS, has joined St. James Hospital effective September 13, 2021
Dr. Wilhelm is an expert in the diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of orthopaedic and sports injuries. He treats ACL tears, fractures, weightlifter’s shoulder, rotator cuff tears, meniscal injuries and tears, sprains and strains, tendonitis, dislocations, labral tears, concussions, minor sports injuries, and general orthopaedic conditions.
“I support patients across the age spectrum, from high school and college athletes to weekend warriors, and even non-athletes,” said Dr. Wilhelm. “My goal is to help individuals of all ages and physical ability improve their performance, regain range of motion, relieve pain, and prevent recurrence of injury.”
Dr. Wilhelm received his medical degree from Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2015, and recently completed a fellowship in Orthopaedic Sports Medicine at Allegheny General Hospital (PA) and a residency in Orthopaedic Surgery at Wellspan/York Hospital (PA). He also holds a doctorate in Physical Therapy from Ithaca College.
“We are very fortunate to bring Dr. Wilhelm fulltime to Hornell,” said Bryan O’Donovan, SJH president and CEO. “We already have a robust orthopaedics and rehabilitation program, and the addition of Dr. Wilhelm provides a new level of expertise that expands our sports medicine capabilities.”
Dr. Wilhelm takes a minimally invasive approach to care using the latest technology and techniques. He has worked with professional teams such as the Pittsburgh Pirates, Pittsburgh Riverhounds, and York Revolution and provided support to international organizations such as USA Rugby, as well as numerous high schools.
Dr. Wilhelm will see patients in the SJH Orthopaedics & Physical Performance Clinic (medical office building, suite 107, 7309 Seneca Rd., Hornell) and do surgeries at St. James Hospital. For more information call (607) 385-3740.
Dr. Andrew Wilhelm, sports medicine physician,
joins St. James Hospital on September 13.
17th Annual St. James Foundation Golf Tournament Raises Over $30,000
Monday, August 30, 2021
The 17th annual St. James Foundation golf tournament raised $30,300 at the event held Friday, August 6, at Twin Hickory Golf Club in Hornell. Twenty-three teams and over forty-five sponsors participated in this year’s tournament, as well as twenty-four volunteers from the hospital and community.
“After taking a hiatus last year due to the pandemic, we were happy to restart this popular event,” said Lisa Schwartz, St. James Foundation chair. “The weather was perfect for golf, camaraderie and raising funds.”
“These great results are a testament to the generosity of our community members, healthcare partners, and vendors,” said Bryan O’Donovan, St. James Hospital CEO. “The funds will be used to directly support patient care and clinical programs.”
Team TTA (Mike Nisbet, Rich Argentieri, Mike Smith, Dan Schwartz) won the event with a score of 59. KCK Properties (Sean Nosky, Michael Bradley, Eric Egger, Casey Kellogg) came in second with a score of 61. Women’s longest drive was won by Sabrina Neal and Dan Schwartz took men’s longest drive. Men’s closest to the pin was won by Kevin Conklin and Missy Pomeroy took women’s closest to the pin.
Elderwood of Hornell again generously provided the title sponsorship of $3,000. Other major support came from Razak Associates ($2,000 club social sponsor) and Wilkins RV ($1,500 carts sponsor). $1,000 gold sponsors included Community Bank, Crosby-Brownlie Mechanical, FSI Construction and Strobel’s Welding. $500 silver sponsors included Big Fox/WYDC, Bonadio Group, Gray Manufacturing, LeChase Construction, NuFlow Services of Upstate NY, Seven Mountains Media, Wegmans and SJH Medical Staff. Lunch was provided by Sodexo and John Carbone/The Main Place donated breakfast.
Hole sponsors included Alfred State College, Century Benefit Group, Davis Ulmer, First Heritage Credit Union, Beverly Gilbert, Hornell Health & Home Services, Jesse Ells, Attorney John Dagon, LifeNet, Maple City Savings Bank, Mercer Health & Benefits, Paylocity, Lisa & Dan Schwartz, Share Corp., and TTA/Transit Air.
In-kind donations were provided by Big Foot Country, Bradley’s Supply, Brandy’s Cup ‘O Joe, Cider Creek Hard Cider, Crickler Vending, Forever 6ix Apparel, Geiger Corp., Jim & Dena Helms, KCK Properties, Railhead Brewing, Salon 96, Shawn Hogan, Spectrum Reach, Tower Broadcasting, Twin Hickory Golf Club, and UR Medicine.
“We greatly appreciate all the players, volunteers and hospital facility employees who worked together to make this day a huge success,” said Schwartz.
Volunteers included Anne Bassage, Caitlin Garippa, Carmen Wilkins, Christine McDaniels, Denise Becher, Haleigh McClelland, Jamie Doll, Jodi Howe, John McAnaney, Julie Oas, Kate Kreger, Kathleen Ferguson, Katie Warner, Kelsea Brubaker, Lindsey Vogel, Lisa Schwartz, Logan Peck, Lynn McAnaney, Mary Liz Schwartz, Melissa Rackmil, Nicole Doan, Shanna O’Donovan, Steve Peck and Todd Strong.
Jodi L. Howe Named Chief Financial Officer at St. James Hospital and Jones Memorial Hospital
Thursday, August 26, 2021
The St. James Hospital and Jones Memorial Hospital (Wellsville) boards of directors have appointed Jodi L. Howe to chief financial officer (CFO), effective 8/26/21.
Reporting to the CEO at both hospitals, Ms. Howe will provide fiscal leadership for St. James and Jones Memorial including financial services, general accounting, revenue cycle (at Jones), and financial and statistical reporting activities. She will also have administrative oversight of materials management, and provide guidance concerning investments and reimbursement matters.
Ms. Howe began her career at St. James Hospital in 2004 as a senior accountant and was promoted to reimbursement/budget analyst in 2006. In 2010 she joined Alfred University as a senior financial analyst and was promoted to controller in 2012. Seven years later she returned to the healthcare arena as director of finance for St. James Hospital and Jones Memorial Hospital.
“Jodi rejoined our organization as we were preparing to open the new hospital,” said Bryan O’Donovan, St. James Hospital president and CEO. “She helped us successfully manage that from a financial perspective, has fostered strong collaboration between the two hospitals, and has helped us successfully execute other strategic initiatives to further our growth.”
“I have worked closely with Jodi in her increasingly important roles at both hospitals,” said James Helms, Jones Hospital president and CEO. “She has proven herself as a financial and management leader, and as CFO, will be integral to guiding both entities during their next important growth stages.”
A long-time resident of Arkport, NY, Ms. Howe earned a masters of business administration with a concentration in accounting from St. Bonaventure University, and a bachelor degree in accounting and business management from Elmira College. She will divide her time between the two hospitals in her new position.
Jodi L. Howe has been promoted to Chief Financial Officer
at St. James Hospital and Jones Memorial Hospital.
St. James Hospital Recognizes Employees for Years of Service
Wednesday, August 25, 2021
St. James Hospital held a reception on August 19th to celebrate employees who had reached milestones in their service to SJH.
“We were pleased to celebrate a total of 680 years of service that forty-two of our colleagues have devoted to St. James Hospital,” said Bryan O’Donovan, president and chief executive officer. “We also acknowledged 2020 service awards, which were curtailed last year due to the pandemic.”
Each year SJH recognizes employees starting with five years of service. This year’s reception acknowledged awards ranging from five to fifty years of employment at the hospital.
A total of forty-two St. James Hospital employees with combined service of 680 years were recognized at a reception on August 19th.
St. James Hospital Welcomes New Occupational Therapist
Saturday, August 21, 2021
St. James Hospital welcomes Morgan C. Ellis, MS, OTR/L, a new occupational therapist in the Orthopaedics & Physical Performance clinic.
In her therapeutic role, Ms. Ellis evaluates and provides treatment for upper extremity injuries and conditions (hand, wrist, elbow and shoulder). She helps patients who are recovering from stroke, injury or living with chronic disease to regain their skills, and supports older adults experiencing physical and cognitive changes. The focus is on ADL (activities of daily living), to encourage people to live life to the fullest by adapting their environment and improving fine motor skills. Ms. Ellis also treats conditions like De Quervain's tenosynovitis, which affects the tendons on the thumb side of the wrist.
Ms. Ellis earned her masters degree in occupational therapy and bachelor degree in occupational science from Keuka College. She has extensive healthcare experience, having previously worked at Wyoming Co. Community Hospital, Livingston-Wyoming ARC, and Elderwood of Hornell.
With the addition of Ms. Ellis, St. James Hospital is expanding the scope of rehabilitation services now available to patients locally. For more information on occupational therapy at
St. James Hospital’s Orthopaedics & Physical Performance clinic, call (607) 385-3790.
Shick Family Charity Golf Classic Raises Record $12,000 for St. James Foundation
Friday, July 23, 2021
A check totaling $13,300 was presented by the Shick family to St. James Hospital CEO Bryan O’Donovan on July 22.
Left to right: Bryan O’Donovan, Becky Shick, Marge Gursey, Judy Harris, Martha Wraight, Matt Shick and Abbie Shick.
Family matriarch, Anita Shick, is featured in front. Not pictured: Dave and Pat Shick of New Jersey, who played in the tournament.
Friends, community donors, vendors, and members of the Shick family gathered at Hornell Golf Club on July 2 for the seventh annual Shick Family Golf Classic. The event raised a record $11,850 for St. James Foundation, which will be used to support programs and services for St. James Hospital patients.
The July 2 event was especially poignant for the family, as matriarch Anita Shick passed away exactly one week before the tournament.
“Mom always looked forward to this event and in years past she spent hours assembling programs and crafting gifts for the players,” said Becky Shick, Anita’s daughter and tournament coordinator. “She loved greeting golfers, including old friends and new as they completed their rounds. It was difficult not having her there in person this year but I think we all felt her presence, especially Scott Weitzel [owner of Hornell Golf Club], who bagged a hole-in-one, just as Mom had predicted a week before she passed.”
In addition to the golf proceeds, memorials for Anita Shick have been designated to be shared with St. James Hospital and Hornell Fire Department.
“Both St. James and HFD took great care of Mom over the years, especially during her final months, and we know she would have wanted these gifts to benefit others in the community in this way,” said Shick. “To-date, memorial donations have topped $2,800.”
“We are very grateful for the Shick family’s generosity and dedication to our hospital and the community,” said Bryan O’Donovan, St. James Hospital CEO. “This annual golf classic is recognized as an established and well-attended event. All of the funds donated to St. James will go directly to supporting patient care.”
The Shick Family Charity Golf Classic was founded in 2014 as a way to support the community and to honor Anita Shick, who has proudly led the family since the passing of her husband, William D. Shick, in 1974 at the age of 45. In 2016 the family decided to designate the proceeds to St. James Foundation.
"Our family has a long history with St. James, going back to our aunt, who was part of the first graduating class of the St. James School of Nursing,” said Shick. “Five years ago Mom and our family unanimously made the decision to support the hospital with all future events."
With this year’s tournament proceeds and memorials for Anita, over $13,300 in total will go to St. James Foundation, for a total of over $35,000 in the last five years.
“We are extremely proud of and grateful for the community’s generosity and huge support of this annual event,” she said.
St. James Hospital Names Executive Vice President
Thursday, June 3, 2021
St. James Hospital has promoted Denise M. Becher to executive vice president (EVP), effective 6/1/21.
In this new position reporting to CEO, the EVP will provide leadership, direction, and oversight of hospital operations. Ms. Becher will be responsible for maximizing St. James's operating performance and achieving its financial goals by interacting with the hospital board of directors, ensuring sound financial practices, managing the strategic plan, and promoting a strong working environment that generates revenues and ensures healthy operations.
Ms. Becher joined St. James Hospital as a registration clerk in 1989 and has progressively taken on higher levels of management and operational responsibility within the organization during her career.
"Most recently Denise demonstrated exceptional leadership during a major transition as we opened and moved into our medical office building and completed construction and the opening of the new hospital," said Bryan O'Donovan, president and CEO. "She also oversaw the application and use of the NYS grants that allowed us to successfully execute these projects, on time and on budget. Denise continues to take on major projects, possesses extraordinary operational and analytical skills, and understands the complex and ever-changing regulatory requirements that are essential in managing an organization like a hospital."
A native and current resident of Hornell, Ms. Becher has a bachelor degree in Business Administration. In addition to her extensive career with St. James Hospital, she also worked at Rochester Regional Health as billing manager in long term care.
"We are excited to have Denise take on this new role as we move into the next phase of St. James Hospital… that of growth and expansion of services," said O'Donovan. "She has been integral to the stabilization of St. James in recent years and will provide great leadership as we continue to grow."
St. James Hospital Honors Staff During National Hospital Week
Tuesday, May 18, 2021
As part of National Hospital Week, May 9-15, St. James Hospital held a number of events to commemorate the hard work and dedication of its approximately 400 employees and providers.
SJH board president Shawn Hogan praised the efforts of everyone.
"This annual celebration is an opportunity to thank and recognize our team members for their many contributions and commitment to our hospital and the community," he said. "This year especially, we want to celebrate our health care heroes at St. James Hospital."
A variety of activities were scheduled for staff including lunch donated by GV Street Food, wooden flowers donated by Mark Van Durm, and Twisters ice cream sponsored by Spectrum Reach.
In a message to staff, CEO Bryan O'Donovan said, "Every day, you help serve our patients and their families in their time of need. This past year you worked very hard to find innovative ways to provide our patients with the highest level of care, as we responded to the pandemic."
National Hospital Week was started by the American Hospital Association to celebrate hospitals and the women and men who support the health and wellbeing of their communities through dedication and compassionate care from the heart.
St. James Hospital Launches Program to Recognize Inpatients for Military Service
Monday, February 15, 2021
Today St. James Hospital launched a program to recognize inpatients who are actively serving or who have served in the U.S. military.
Each patient who is admitted to St. James Hospital is asked if he or she has served in the military, and if they want to be acknowledged during their stay. For those who consent, staff insert a card outside of the patient's room and place an American flag in the room. This alerts staff of the patient's military service and the opportunity to acknowledge it. The patient is encouraged to take the flag home.
"We are honored to formally show appreciation to patients who have served our country," said Bryan O'Donovan, president and CEO and U.S. Army veteran. "This is one small way that we can thank them for their service, and as safety restrictions allow, our leadership team will also visit military and non-military patients in their rooms."
"We feel that these patients deserve to be recognized for their service," said Melissa Rackmil, chief nursing officer, "and after several months of planning we're happy to get it started."
"We hope that this gesture genuinely demonstrates our appreciation for patients who have served in the military," said Jason Bisker, inpatient nurse manager.
St. James Hospital Assists the Public in Obtaining COVID Vaccine Information
Monday, January 11, 2021
In an effort to help the public access and utilize the NYS Dept. of Health COVID vaccination program, St. James Hospital issued the following guidance.
"Now that New York has entered Phase 1B of its COVID-19 vaccine roll-out, more eligible groups can register for the vaccine," said Bryan O'Donovan, St. James Hospital president and CEO.
O'Donovan clarified that although St. James serves as a site to administer the vaccination, all first-dose vaccine registrations are managed by NYS Dept. of Health -- not the hospital, primary care, or urgent care.
"The Dept. of Health has a system in place for people to check their eligibility and register for a vaccine at various sites," he said. "People should avoid calling the hospital, PCP's or urgent care to request the vaccine, as the supply and process are managed by the Dept. of Health. As vaccine becomes available to St. James Hospital, our location will be updated in the system and those meeting the criteria will be able to register for the vaccine at our hospital. If St. James Hospital is not listed in the database that means we do not have the vaccine and another location will need to be selected. All vaccinations are by appointment only."
The public is asked to contact the Dept. of Health at the website or phone number noted below for information about eligibility, and to register for a vaccination.
The vaccination web site is https://covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov. Beginning at 4 p.m. today (January 11), the state's COVID-19 Vaccination Hotline will open for scheduling vaccination appointments for eligible New Yorkers: 1-833-NYS-4-VAX (1-833-697-4829).
St. James Hospital will continue to work with the Dept. of Health to support the community by sharing resources and updates as they become available.
St. James Hospital Announces New Medical Staff Officers
Monday, January 4, 2021
St. James Hospital announces the election of its new medical staff officers. Effective 1/1/21, Uzma Mehr, M.D. will serve as president of the medical staff; Pradeep Sharda, M.D. as vice president; and Sachin Manthuruthil, M.D. as secretary/treasurer.
Currently a pediatrician with Oak Orchard Hornell, Dr. Mehr has provided high-quality medical services to the local community and to St. James Hospital for almost twenty years. She has served as chief of pediatrics at St. James and is currently a board member at Hornell City School District. Dr. Mehr is taking the medical staff president position that was held by Spencer Annabel, M.D., who retired from clinical practice at the end of 2020.
"Dr. Annabel has provided exceptional leadership to our medical staff and it's been an honor working with him," said Bilal Ahmed, M.D., chief medical officer. "Dr. Mehr is a well-respected colleague among our medical staff, and we look forward to her leadership as president starting in 2021."