Sr Katherine Joy Popoczy 2/4/76

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PAGBB4 BUSINESS REVIEW AND FORECAST EDITION, FEBRUARY, 197C St. Joseph Hospital adjusted to economy BY BRUCESTEVENS WARREN - Tbe Impact of · sluggish economy brought many changes to St Joseph's Riverside Hospital in 1979, some welcomed by hospital officials, some not. The present economy has been adverse to health care in that those hardest hit have been letting their health insurance insurance lapse, causing proper health care to become a financial burden. This, coupled with inflation's rising costs, is seen as a serious problem by hospital officials. Samuel Torres, Executive Director of St. Joseph's Riverside Hospital, says, "We have been seeing a change in tbe patients who come to as. They have hesitated to enter tbe hospital for less-essential medical care, waiting until their problem must receive immediate treatment. This, of course, may lead to additional complications." However, the belt- tightening has brought about some programs which have benefited both tbe hospital and tbe patient. 1975 saw the inception of the Joint Area Hospital Committee, in* volving St. Joseph's, Trumbull Memorial, Warren General and Hillside Rehabilitation Hospitals. This committee, consisting of the board president, medical staff president, and chief executive officer of each hospital, meets on a monthly basis to discuss the mutual problems each hospital may face and find possible solutions. The committee already has saved tbe hospital, and ultimately the patient, considerable funds through a program of joint purchasing contracts. Torres comments, "This committee has been particularly particularly satisfying for us that each hospital can retain its individuality, yet provide a better service through the cooperation and help of the other area hospitals." Another program which helped the hospital through 1975 was the process 'Of utilization review, a program in which the medical staff meets to plan the maximum use of tbe entire hospital facility. Utilisation review has resulted in making the hospital more efficient, lowering the length of the hospital stay for the patient without lowering tbe quality of the services received. In support of tbe patient's needs, St. Joseph's Hospital established a deportment of Social Services to provide counseling and guidance for patients and family concerning concerning post-hospital needs. These services help in the patient's adjustment and are especially helpful for the after-hospital period. During 1975 the Social Services Department case load nearly doubled over tbe previous year. During 1976, St. Joseph's introduced a Pastoral Care Department headed by Sister Katberine Joy Popoczy. The Pastoral Care Department offers spiritual support for those who wish it or act as contact for clergy of tbe patient's choice. "The Pastoral Care program brings together all of the reasons for the existence of a Catholic hospital," Torres observes. "We attempt to treat the total patient, both medically and spiritually, by p r o v i d i n g outstanding medical services with our supporting services." Sister Katherine Joy has also been elected to the vice-presidency of the Warren Area Clergy Association. St. Joseph's experienced the loss of two valuable doctors in 1975 with the retirement of Dr. Sigmotid J. Shapiro and the death of Dr. John LaVoo. Dr. Shapiro was recognized in 1975 with the awarding of the Ohio State Medical Association's Certificate of Distinction for 50 years of service to medicine. This award is designed to honor physicians who have completed completed a half century or more of service to their patients, tbe public health and welfare, and the principles of the art and science of medicine. The hospital, which was founded in November, 1924 by the Sisters of Humility of Mary, is we of tbe largest employers in Trumbull County, with over 200 career fields represented Since St Joseph's founding, hospital administrators have seen many changes in their roles. Torres states, "With the continued government interest interest in health care, we have become more involved in politics, playing a part in forming legislation and serving on government committees. In this way tbe hospital administrator has bad to become more Involved in the lobbying process." Torres also foresees the advent of a national health care program by 1980. Based on tbe experience of countries which already have such a program, such as England and Sweden, be feels that the program wUl result in fewer physicians for the society, the quality of carewill be altered, and the cost to the community will be increased. Torres says, "Our deepest concern is the inability of tbe government to function efficiently, efficiently, and we dread a Post Office-like health care system, designed, controlled, and created by politicians. I feel that tbe private sector has a vital place hi the health care system." Looking forward to 1976, hospital officials see little relief from tbe problems which have raised tbe cost of health care. Torres states, "We have been affected by external influences, such as scarcity and inflation, which have been raised our costs. We must respond to the community's needs, and as these needs Increase, our costs correspondingly increase." increase." Because of these external influences, a careful, steady growth is seen as the rule for the coming year. The aim of the hospital administration will be to make the hospital more efficient, and to continue continue with tbe upward utilization of the out-patient faculties. Torres predicts, "We have had 51 years of improvement and success, and we are looking forward to 1976 as a challenge. We have kept St. Joseph's on the road of economic normalcy, and 1 believe we're going to overcome the fears and problems that have held the country, the community, and our hospital back." In IS THAN

Clipped from
  1. Howland Bandwagon,
  2. 04 Feb 1976, Wed,
  3. Page 37

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  • Sr Katherine Joy Popoczy 2/4/76

    Fleischer_KM – 27 Mar 2013

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