Cooper Study Published In Leading Medical Journal Examines Long-Term Survival of Critically Ill Patients Requiring Prolonged Mechanical Ventilation

Study Finds Fewer Than Half of Patients Survive One Year

Critical Care and Emergency Medicine researchers at Cooper University Hospital and Cooper Medical School of Rowan University (CMSRU) have published a study on long-term outcomes for critically ill patients requiring prolonged mechanical ventilation in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, a specialty journal of The Lancet, one of the world’s leading medical journals.

The research was a meta-analysis of the worldwide data on long-term survival for patients who require mechanical ventilation for 14 or more days after a critical illness.  The study found that while a high proportion of patients survived to hospital discharge, only half were able to be fully weaned off of the ventilator, and fewer than half of the patients were still alive at the one year mark.

“The evolution of modern-day critical care has saved innumerable lives, but presents new challenges,” said Emily Damuth, M.D., lead author of the study and a Critical Care/Emergency Medicine specialist at Cooper and Assistant Professor of Medicine and Emergency Medicine at CMSRU.  “We have found that while the use of prolonged mechanical ventilation in a distinct population of ICU patients permits protracted survival, they often do not achieve full recovery.”

“In the United States alone approximately $35 billion is spent annually treating patients with chronic critical illness,” said Stephen Trzeciak, MD, MPH, senior author on the study and Head of Critical Care Medicine at Cooper and Associate Professor of Medicine and Emergency Medicine at CMSRU.  “Long-term survival for these patients, however, has not been fully understood. We think that the results of this study can provide useful information for ICU clinicians that can help facilitate discussions of prognosis with patients and their families.”

The next step for this line of research is to move beyond long-term survival and focus on quality of life among survivors, according to Dr. Trzeciak.  Future studies should focus on optimal patient selection for prolonged mechanical ventilation and integration of long-term quality of life information into clinical decision-making.

The full study can be found here.

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Cooper Names Trauma Step-Down Nurse as DAISY Award Winner

daisy2qCooper University Health Care has named Kristina Kelly, RN, of Riverside, NJ, as the most recent DAISY Award winner.

The DAISY Award, established by The DAISY Foundation, is an international program that rewards and celebrates the extraordinary clinical skill and compassionate care given by nurses every day. It is presented in collaboration with the American Organization of Nurse Executives. Each quarter, Cooper will honor a nurse with The DAISY Award.

Kelly, a nurse on Cooper’s Kelemen 7 Trauma Step-Down unit, was selected among 68 nominees. She was nominated by the family of Dillon Kelly (no relation) for the way she cared for him and was an advocate for their entire family following a traumatic car accident in January 2015.

According to the Kelly family, “Kristina was truly one-of-a-kind. Nothing could alleviate our fears until we met this special nurse. Her compassion and empathy was astounding. She was with us night and day, answered all our questions and eased our minds in the worst of situations.”

As Dillon recovered, Kelly educated the entire family about his home care prior to discharge.

“Kristina took an unbearable situation and made it bearable for our family,” said Siobhan Kelly, Dillon’s mother.

Dillon has since recovered from his injuries, and the entire family was in attendance to help present the award to Kelly.

Kelly has been a member of the Cooper staff since 2013. A graduate of Holy Family University, Philadelphia, Kelly has been a registered nurse for three years.

Each quarter’s winner receives a DAISY Award recipient pin, a Healer’s Touch hand-carved statue, an award certificate and a gift certificate for cinnamon rolls from Cinnabon. In addition, the selected nurse’s unit receives a banner to post for the quarter.

Anyone—patients, families and professional colleagues—may nominate a Cooper nurse for The DAISY Award. The DAISY nomination materials are located on nursing units and other public locations throughout the main Cooper campus and outpatient offices, as well as online through the Cooper website. Visit to learn more.

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Special Delivery for Moms Who Won’t Be Home to Celebrate Mother’s Day

motherdayblog2On May 8, 2015, The Lauren Rose Albert Foundation/Mother’s Matter Program visited Cooper University Hospital to deliver more than 100 gift baskets to mothers, grandmothers and caregivers who are hospitalized or have a family member hospitalized and won’t be home for Mother’s Day.

Since Mother’s Day 2001, the Lauren Rose Albert Foundation has reached out to mothers-in- need by donating hundreds of gift baskets overflowing with personal health and beauty care products to various community organizations, charities and health care facilities during the week of Mother’s Day. The gift baskets were given to new moms who just delivered their babies, oncology patients, trauma patient family members and others.

School children, girl scouts, businesses and community organizations and agencies as well as local and county governments and colleges participate through Mothers Matter collection drives, contributions and volunteer support. Mothers Matter volunteers assemble beautiful gift baskets which are delivered in time for Mother’s Day; each gift bears the message that “Mothers Matter.” Now a year-round effort, Mothers Matter volunteers assembled and delivered more than 30,000 Mother’s Day Gift Baskets to day care centers, women’s shelters and safe houses, pediatric medical day care facilities, women’s agencies, hospitals and other facilities that serve the needs of women.


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Teens in Hospital Get New Hangout

New Teen Lounge Opens at Children’s Regional Hospital at Cooper

The Cooper Foundation, in partnership with the Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation and the Ravitz Family Foundation, today celebrated the opening of the new Teen Lounge at Children’s Regional Hospital at Cooper.

“This new Teen Lounge is designed to be a special place for our adolescent patients, where they can take a break from their hospital stay, have fun and meet others their own age who can relate to what they are going through,” said Susan Bass Levin, President and CEO of The Cooper Foundation.  “We are especially thankful to the Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation and the Ravitz Family Foundation for their generous support in making this important project a reality.”


The Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation and the Ravitz Family Foundation each donated $10,000 for the creation of the Teen Lounge, which is outfitted with a flat-screen television, comfortable couches and chairs, two computer consoles, gaming systems, board games, books and much more.

“For teens confined to a hospital, the opportunity to have fun in a well-equipped, inviting environment truly assists in the healing process,” said Gisele DiNatale, Co-founder of the Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation. “Many hospitals have playrooms that are available for younger children, but when our daughter Alicia was hospitalized, we realized that teens need a welcoming space that they can call their own.”

The Children’s Regional Hospital at Cooper treats approximately 500 adolescent patients annually, with 25 percent of those patients facing a life-threatening illness.

“We are honored to support the Teen Lounge at Cooper,” said Steve Ravitz, Chairman of the Ravitz Family Foundation. “Now teenagers being treated at Cooper have a place where they can hang out, play games and just be a kid for a while.”

In addition, Cooper’s Child Life Team will provide programming and activities geared specifically toward teenage patients.

“An essential part of providing comprehensive, family-centered health care is recognizing the importance of the environment in helping our patients feel better. That is especially important for children and teens,” said Adrienne Kirby, President and CEO, Cooper University Health Care. “We are so thankful for this new Teen Lounge because it enhances the care we provide and helps alleviate the fear and stress associated with hospitalization.”


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Cooper Among South Jersey Hospitals to Launch Collaborative to Improve Access to Behavioral Health Services

04_2015_behavorialCooper University Health Care is among the five major health systems in southern New Jersey, the New Jersey Hospital Association (NJHA) and the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers that has launched the South Jersey Behavioral Health Innovation Collaborative (SJBHIC) to evaluate the current behavioral health landscape and provide innovative recommendations on how to improve the system. The year-long project will include engaging key stakeholders, encompassing patients, families and providers in an effort to better identify the challenges they face.

In addition to Cooper, collaborative members include Inspira Health Network, Kennedy Health, Lourdes Health System, Virtua, the New Jersey Hospital Association and the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers.

The health systems first came together after the 2013 Tri-County Community Health Needs Assessment (Burlington, Camden and Gloucester counties) identified greater access to mental health and substance abuse services as one of the top five health issues facing the region.

To understand the challenges in the current system, the collaborative will begin gathering data from the five participating hospitals on how patients flow through their network of providers, analyze the data and then apply evidence-based and best practices along with innovative system changes that will better serve individuals with behavioral health conditions.

“Mental illness robs individuals of both dignity and decades of life expectancy; but, unfortunately, the current system is heavily focused on those times a person is in crisis,” said Adrienne Kirby, PhD, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cooper University Health Care. “Waiting until a crisis is imminent is an ineffective way to treat a chronic health condition. We need a new approach that facilitates more proactive management of mental illness. Cooper is proud to partner with our colleagues to find new opportunities to care for these patients who need our help.”

As part of the collaborative’s learning process, the five hospital CEOs and their project teams attended a kick-off event on April 15, 2015, to hear James Schuster, MD, MBA, Chief Medical Officer for the Community Care Behavioral Health Organization, discuss his award winning and groundbreaking project, “Optimizing Behavioral Health Incomes by Focusing on Outcomes that Matter Most for Adults with Serious Mental Illness.”

Schuster’s work focuses on the successful integration of primary care and behavioral health care and the SNJBHI plans to examine his best practices to see if they can be applied to communities in southern New Jersey.

According to NJHA’s 2013 Acute Care Hospital Behavioral Health Volume Report, well over a half million patients were treated for psychiatric and substance abuse concerns and discharged back into the community. In 2013, 39 percent of the inpatient admissions from southern New Jersey residents had a primary or secondary diagnosis of behavioral health.

Between 2009 and 2013, the number of ED visits by southern New Jersey residents whose primary diagnosis was a behavioral health condition increased by 20 percent, and on average, more than 100 people a day from southern New Jersey come to EDs with behavioral health as their primary concern.

“One hospital and one clinic can’t solve this systemic behavioral health crisis, it operates at the community level. People are not getting the treatment they so desperately need,” said Jeffrey C. Brenner, MD, Director of Cooper’s Urban Health Institute and Founder and Executive Director of the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers.

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