Christmas Comes Early for Cerritos Students

First published in the Dec. 25 print issue of the Glendale News Press.

By Jonathan Williams
Glendale News-Press

On an early Friday morning in December, Santa decided to trade his sleigh for a fire truck and a police escort.
Joining Santa were volunteers from Glendale Memorial Hospital, Glendale Unified School District officials, police officers, firefighters and the Los Angeles Galaxy. The festive group donated presents to nearly 500 students from Cerritos Elementary School last week.
Toys of all different types — science kits, soccer balls, games, art supplies — all came from personalized wish lists the students crafted. Continue reading “Christmas Comes Early for Cerritos Students”

Health Care Internship Gains 16 GHS Students

First published in the Oct. 9 print issue of the Glendale News Press.

Glendale Memorial Hospital picked 16 students from Glendale High School to serve as interns for the institution’s health care professions internship program for the 2021-22 academic year. The selected students are, in alphabetical order, Elan Ankri, Lia Artoon Levaskanni, Krislyn Ayala, Anastasia Babusenko, Lilian Barseghyan, Amy Bravo, Caitlin Jane Calica, Bianca Hinojosa, Sebuh Kivijian, Angela Krikorian, Sheeva Manesh, Angela Markarian, Jordan Martinez, Edrick Massihi, Yara Shoora and Nicole Lyn Vergara. This program offers interns a broad overview and exposure to health care fields and health care professions. During this yearlong program, students will be on-site at the hospital one day a week for a three-hour block of time. Glendale Memorial initially planned to take on 10 interns, but ultimately took 16 based on the strength of their applications. Narineh Makijan, coordinator of GUSD’s college and career division, developed the program with Glendale Memorial. Additional information and programs can be found at gusd.net/CollegeCareer.

For Aiding Moms in Labor, Nurse Reaps Honors

This is the fourth in a series of profiles on Glendale-area women who recently were honored by Congressman Adam Schiff as his district’s women of the year.

As a labor nurse at Glendale Memorial Hospital, Daisy De La Torre is routinely tasked with assisting patients giving birth — perhaps the most important delivery.
And then, in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, she sometimes had to perform what surely was one of the most difficult acts — taking a newborn away from a mother who had the disease. Such was the reality of the pandemic’s initial stages, when little was known about the disease other than it easily killed the most vulnerable and spread chaotically.
“We weren’t sure if moms were going to transmit to their baby,” De La Torre explained in a recent interview. “That was the standard everywhere at the beginning of the pandemic, because COVID wasn’t very well understood. Thankfully, now, they aren’t, because we know more about COVID, but that was definitely scary for moms.” Continue reading “For Aiding Moms in Labor, Nurse Reaps Honors”

Area Teachers to Start Receiving COVID-19 Shots Next Week

USC Verdugo Hills Hospital and other institutions will begin vaccinating area elementary school teachers for COVID-19 next week, including Glendale Unified School District teachers who choose to sign up for the inoculation.
The hospital will take 350 teachers on Monday and another 350 on Thursday and aims to continue its vaccination work with additional teachers and members of the community, as eligibility increases. The concrete plan is a welcome development weeks after the initial rollout for vaccinating teachers was delayed because of supply issues.
Additionally, Adventist Health Glendale and Glendale Memorial Hospital also will be handling vaccinations for GUSD teachers.

Continue reading “Area Teachers to Start Receiving COVID-19 Shots Next Week”

City Continues ‘Downward Trend’ in New COVID-19 Cases

Photo courtesy Glendale Fire Department
With help from CVS and HumanGood, the Glendale Fire Department this week helped administer COVID-19 vaccinations to low-income senior residents at Park Paseo and The Otto Gruber House.

Daily new cases of COVID-19 in Glendale have been falling throughout 2021, and while they still are not at the lower levels seen before the holiday season surge, it is still a marked improvement from the crisis that overwhelmed Southern California’s health care system.
As of the News-Press’ deadline this week, the city had a seven-day average of 76 new cases per day, the lowest amount since the seven-day average of 72 posted on Nov. 28. This comes weeks after the city peaked on Jan. 14 with an astronomical seven-day average of 247 daily new cases of the coronavirus.

Continue reading “City Continues ‘Downward Trend’ in New COVID-19 Cases”

Flu Shots More Important This Year, Health Experts Say

Photo courtesy USC-VHH
A local resident gets a flu shot during a recent drive-thru event at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital. Experts are strongly urging people to get flu shots this year, especially because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Now, especially, is the time to make sure you get your flu shot, according to local experts.
It’s not likely that you’ll find a doctor who won’t urge a patient to get an annual flu shot in a normal year, mind you. However, the world has even more reason to keep hospital beds open at the moment because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Any way that we can prevent any kind of respiratory illness is important,” said Patricia Sung, manager of infection prevention at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital. “Even under normal circumstances, it’s pretty important to get the flu shot.”
Continue reading “Flu Shots More Important This Year, Health Experts Say”

Flu Shots More Important This Year, Health Experts Say

Photo courtesy USC-VHH
A local resident gets a flu shot during a recent drive-thru event at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital. Experts are strongly urging people to get flu shots this year, especially because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Now, especially, is the time to make sure you get your flu shot, according to local experts.
It’s not likely that you’ll find a doctor who won’t urge a patient to get an annual flu shot in a normal year, mind you. However, the world has even more reason to keep hospital beds open at the moment because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Any way that we can prevent any kind of respiratory illness is important,” said Patricia Sung, manager of infection prevention at USC Verdugo Hills Hospital. “Even under normal circumstances, it’s pretty important to get the flu shot.”
The flu, much like COVID-19, is a respiratory illness that can become incapacitating and fatal if not treated and when exacerbated by other conditions. Although some studies have indicated that individuals infected with both illnesses have twice the mortality rate, Sung said the actual data isn’t there yet.

Continue reading “Flu Shots More Important This Year, Health Experts Say”

Coronavirus Demographics: Younger People Also Afflicted

While the tally of positive COVID-19 tests grows larger, the average age of patients has been inching lower in recent weeks as the initial wave of the pandemic has surged back with fury.
When the pandemic grew in March and April, hospitals found themselves overwhelmed and low on key supplies to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus, and elderly men and women with pre-existing health conditions represented a large percentage of cases. A significant number of such patients came from skilled nursing facilities, whose residents sometimes made up a super-majority of deaths in a given community.
Now, in the weeks after Los Angeles County and state officials briefly relaxed public restrictions, it’s a different picture.

Continue reading “Coronavirus Demographics: Younger People Also Afflicted”

Dignity Health Hospitals Offer Onsite Grocery for Staff

Photo courtesy Dignity Health
Glendale Memorial Hospital’s healthcare workers now have an onsite grocery store, making it easier for hospital employees to get items they need in a timely fashion.

Glendale Memorial Hospital is making a difficult situation easier for its healthcare workers with an onsite grocery store. As grocery chains face restocking issues, safety concerns and restricted hours, it can be difficult for hospital employees to get items they need.
The hospital’s cafeteria has set-up a mini-mart with shopping available every day. “I am so proud of the entire Glendale Memorial family and hope this program provides more time for our staff and physicians to spend at home,” said hospital President Jill Welton.
Alex Valdez, the director of Nutrition Services, shares that staff have expressed their gratitude for the shopping options, with the first day serving more than 100 people. Thanks to partnerships with distributors, like U.S. Foods, the cafeteria is able to sell items to staff at cost.
Visit dignityhealth.org/SoCal for more information.

Glendale Memorial Hospital President to Retire

Jack Ivie

Health care leader Jack Ivie will conclude his 42-year career and retire from his position as president of Glendale Memorial Hospital, effective June 30.
Entering health care in 1975 as a licensed physical therapist, practicing at St. John’s Hospital in Oxnard, Ivie’s career encompassed progressive experience in clinical, operational and senior leadership positions with acute care hospitals in Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernardino Counties.
Ivie’s lifelong service to Glendale Memorial Hospital is significant, stemming from a committed history with the hospital. Each of his four children was born at Glendale Memorial and this connection, as well as his service as hospital president and in various hospital administration roles, is clearly evident.
Continue reading “Glendale Memorial Hospital President to Retire”