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  • January 06, 2022

    Christine R. Wray announces Jan. 2022 retirement after 42 years of service in healthcare

    CLINTON, Md.Christine R. Wray, FACHE, president of MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center and MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital who also serves as a senior vice president for MedStar Health, announced that she will be retiring on January 28, 2022.

    Wray was named president of MedStar Southern Maryland in September 2014, two years after MedStar Health acquired the hospital located in the Clinton area of Prince George’s County. With Wray at the helm, MedStar Southern Maryland saw the development and growth of several new service lines.

    In 2016, the hospital received national recognition from U.S. News & World Report, having ranked among the top 50 of best hospitals for neurology and neurosurgery. In 2017, MedStar Southern Maryland joined the prestigious MedStar Heart and Vascular Institute-Cleveland Clinic Alliance. Wray also helped facilitate the opening of the MedStar Georgetown Cancer Institute at MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center in February 2020. This 25,000 square foot facility offers unmatched medical expertise, leading-edge therapies, and access to robust clinical research, all under the same roof.

    Moreover, the construction of MedStar Southern Maryland’s new Emergency Department (ED) expansion project took place under Wray’s leadership, and remained on schedule despite the COVID-19 pandemic. The $43 million ED expansion project has been deemed the largest construction project in the hospital’s history. The new emergency department opened its doors in April 2021 to provide local residents with seamless access to the most advanced care.

    Wray’s focus on providing quality care has helped MedStar Southern Maryland build a foundation of excellence that will serve local communities for decades to come. MedStar Southern Maryland is grateful for the innumerable and lasting contributions that Wray made throughout her 42-year healthcare career.

    “I have so cherished working with all of you in our commitment and service to our wonderful communities. It has truly been an honor and a privilege,” Wray said in an announcement that was emailed to hospital associates. “Please always be proud of the work you do and how you care for each other as you care for our patients. It is incredibly important work and you are the best of the best!

    Dr. Stephen Michaels, who currently serves as the chief operating and medical officer for MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital, will take over as president of MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center.

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  • October 13, 2016

    More Goes into Physical Therapy than Meets the Eye

    The biggest misconception about physical therapy (PT), says Clinical Coordinator Ukonnaya Bigelow, PT, DPT, is that not much goes into physical therapy, and that it is easy.

    “Some professionals think we’re glorified ‘get out of bed’ helpers,” said Bigelow.  “The reality is, we perform true assessments and evaluations of patients, taking into account their past medical history, their current needs and their discharge plans, whether they’re going home or to rehab.  We implement treatments, stabilize them and make sure patients don’t decline further.”

    MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center's PT Department includes five inpatient and two outpatient physical therapists, two occupational therapists and one speech therapist. Physical therapists spend most of their time on the 4 East Orthopedic Floor, where there is a rehab gym with equipment to help patients gain back range of motion and strength. Bigelow says they also help patients in navigating rooms with obstacles and walking in busy hallways, since that mimics the types of environments the patient will face after discharge. 

    On a typical day, physical therapists may help an older stroke patient whose cerebellum has been affected regain some balance.  They may help motivate a young patient who experienced a stroke in their 30’s and is dealing with the emotions the condition brings, as they try to walk.  Or, they may help an intensive care unit patient, still weak from remaining in bed for extended periods, strengthen the muscles they need to sit up and breathe effectively. 

    The reward for this important work, says Bigelow, is when they see patients who have experienced debilitating conditions gain strength and walk without assistance.  For that, she says, she hasn’t minded being called a Drill Sergeant on occasion.   

    To commemorate National PT Month, the PT Department will hold an Open House on Wednesday, October 26, 2016, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in outpatient PT (Ground Floor G-132). Therapist will be available to highlight the modalities and interventions available to treat pain.  This campaign draws attention to the role physical therapy plays not only on mobility, but pain management. The #ChoosePT campaign is focused  on safe pain management without the use of addictive opioids.


  • October 05, 2016

    When you make an appointment to visit the MedStar Women’s Specialty Center in Leonardtown, our team of doctors and providers experienced in women’s health will make sure you get the care you deserve. With more than 15 years experience working in a multi-provider practice, Angela Borger, DNP, NP-C, has spent the past year focused on women’s health in the same office with fellowship-trained breast surgeon Patricia Wehner, MD. Both belong to the MedStar Breast Health Program at MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital and provide women in our community with exceptional service and peace of mind.

    Self Exams and Mammograms

    When it comes to the facts about breast cancer and managing your own health, both Angela and Dr. Wehner believe that self awareness and understanding the facts are vital risk reducing strategies, along with self exams and getting your annual mammogram. “Mammographic screening recommendations have currently changed and are determined by personal and family history,” said Dr. Wehner, “but all females aged 45 to 55 will need an annual mammogram.”

    Detecting a breast lump during a self exam can be scary, but not all breast lumps are cancer. Many people can have abnormalities in their breasts that are benign or non cancerous. However, if a lump is found during a self exam, it should not be ignored and seeing a provider is advised. “A clinical breast exam is the next step in finding out if a lump needs further medical attention,” said Angela, “and mammogram imaging and other testing may be necessary as well.”

    At MedStar Women’s Specialty Center, Angela and Dr. Wehner offer comprehensive breast care for women from routine procedures to surgery. Dr. Wehner performs oncoplastic breast surgeries using new techniques designed to minimize changes in the physical appearance of the breast. “With advances in modern medicine, it is easier now to remove a tumor without disfiguring the surrounding breast tissue,” said Dr. Wehner, who brings the latest advancements in breast surgery to our hometown.  

    Protecting yourself is simple. Perform routine breast exams at home, visit your provider for annual well-woman exams, which include clinical breast exams, and schedule routine mammogram screenings.

    Angela Borger

    Angela Borger, DNP, NP-C, is a certified nurse practitioner and a provider in the MedStar Breast Health Program. She sees patients at the MedStar Women’s Specialty Center in Leonardtown. Angela earned her doctorate in nursing practice and master of science in nursing from Case Western University in Cleveland, Ohio. She also holds a bachelor of science in psychobiology & women’s studies from Albright College in Reading, Pa.




    Patricia WehnerPatricia Wehner, MD, is a board-certified surgeon and an attending physician in the MedStar Breast Health Program. She performs surgeries at MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital and MedStar Washington Hospital Center. Dr. Wehner earned her medical degree at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and completed her general surgery training at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, followed by a surgical breast oncology fellowship at the University of Southern California.


    Checkered Tumblers CMYK

    Love Yourself, Get Checked

    Mammogram appointments for first time visits and annual exams are available at MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital. Come in for a scheduled appointment beginning in October and receive a free pink and white Breast Cancer Awareness insulated tumbler, available while supplies last.

    Call 301-475-6399 to schedule an appointment.

    Breast Health Fair

    College of Southern Maryland, Leonardtown CampusPink breast cancer ribbon isolated on white
    Located in the Wellness Center – Bldg. D
    Oct. 18, 2:30 to 5:30 p.m.

    MedStar Women’s Specialty Center providers will be offering information and giveaways.

  • September 30, 2016

    Abhinav Sankineni, MD, MPH Brings Unique Esophageal Specialty


    BALTIMORE—(September 2016)— Dr. Abhinav Sankineni joins the Center for Digestive Disease at MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center, bringing a uniquely specialized focus to diseases of the esophagus including esophageal cancer and Barrett’s esophagus. A board certified physician in internal medicine and gastroenterology, Dr. Sankineni specializes in interventional gastroenterology, esophageal motility and pH studies, and esophageal and biliary stenting. sankineni

    “Dr. Sankineni brings a new skill set to our program in the area of esophageal disease where he will lead enhanced evaluation of patients utilizing assessment of esophageal function with motility, ph, and impedance studies,” says Dr. A. Steven Fleisher, chief of gastroenterology and director of interventional endoscopy at the Center for Digestive Disease at MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center.  “These skills will be applied to a broad spectrum of our patients including those with functional esophageal disorders, achalasia, scleroderma esophagus, chronic reflux, atypical chest pain, and morbid obesity.”

    Dr. Sankineni joins an experienced surgical team at MedStar Franklin Square, recognized for providing Baltimore and the surrounding areas highly specialized, comprehensive, and compassionate patient care for a full range of digestive disease disorders.

    “In addition, Dr. Sankineni will supplement the interventional endoscopy program where we already perform diagnostic and therapeutic interventions, such as endoscopic ultrasound and endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) used to study the bile ducts, pancreatic duct and gallbladder, in patients with a variety of disorders including cancers of the digestive system, pancreatic cystic disease, and bile duct obstruction,” says Dr. Fleisher.

    After receiving his medical degree from Kamineni Institute of Medical Sciences in Andhra Pradesh, India, Dr. Sankineni completed his residency at Abington Memorial Hospital in Pennsylvania. He continued his training with fellowships in interventional endoscopy, gastroenterology, and gastrointestinal motility at Temple University Hospital.

    Dr. Sankineni is seeing patients on the hospital campus.

    Click here to learn more about surgery at MedStar Franklin Square or call 443-777-2475 to schedule an appointment.

    About MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center
    MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center is a not-for-profit 378-bed community teaching hospital located in the White Marsh section of eastern Baltimore County, Maryland. MedStar Franklin

    Square provides many medical and healthcare services, including a broad range of healthcare specialties, advanced technologies and treatments not traditionally found at community hospitals. The hospital is ranked third in admissions among all Maryland hospitals and is first in Emergency Department visits with more than 108,000 visits annually. MedStar Franklin Square is accredited by the Joint Commission and certified as a Primary Stroke Center and has earned some of the nation’s most prestigious quality awards including Magnet Designation for excellence in nursing, the Excellence Award for Quality Improvement from the Delmarva Foundation and inclusion in the U.S. News & World Report Best Hospital specialty ranking for four consecutive years. With more than 3,300 employees, MedStar Franklin Square is one of the largest employers in Baltimore County. Visit for more information.

  • September 23, 2016
    Suzanne Groah, MD, Director of the Spinal Cord Injury Consultation Liaison Service and of Spinal Cord Injury Research at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital and Associate Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine at Georgetown University recently received an exciting new grant award for field initiated research from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR).
  • September 23, 2016

    MedStar Montgomery Medical Center Improves Patient Safety and Experience

    voceraSAN JOSE, Calif. — Vocera Communications, Inc. (NYSE: VCRA), the leading healthcare communications company, today announced that long-time customer MedStar Montgomery Medical Center has once again improved patient care with the launch of a fall prevention program. The innovative new initiative combines prescriptive analytics using the hospital’s clinical data with the Vocera Communication System, an intelligent software platform enabling real-time alerts and notifications, secure texting, hands-free communication, and integration with more than 75 clinical systems including electronic health records, nurse call and bed management solutions. The program is supported by analyticsMD’s prescriptive analytics solution.

    For more than 13 years, MedStar Montgomery Medical Center has been a Vocera customer, initially implementing the Vocera Communication System enterprise-wide to reduce noise levels. That objective was quickly met; and over the years, the hospital has leveraged Vocera technology in many other ways to improve patient experience and workflow efficiency. Equipping environmental services staff with wearable, voice-controlled communication devices helped improve room turnover rates, and integration between the bed tracking system and the Vocera solution significantly improved patient wait times and throughput in the emergency department. In 2012, the hospital integrated its nurse call solution with the Vocera system, connecting patients quickly to their caregivers and reducing staff response times.

    With a continuous focus on patient safety and satisfaction, MedStar implemented analyticsMD’s prescriptive analytics solution in 2016, gaining real-time, actionable insight into its patient population. The analyticsMD platform looks at both historical and transactional data to proactively notify MedStar team members about fall risks. Now MedStar has a real-time fall alert system that notifies care teams about high-risk patients. These alerts are sent directly to assigned nurses via their Vocera Communication Badge. Because the badges are wearable, staff members’ hands are free to quickly help patients at the bedside while also calling for co-workers’ assistance if needed.

    “We are noticing a downward trend in falls since implementing the prevention program using the Vocera technology in conjunction with analyticsMD prescriptive analytics,” said Christiane Brown, assistant vice president of information technology at MedStar. “It’s amazing how the right information combined with the right communication technology can have such as positive impact on patient care and safety.”

    In addition to safeguarding patients, an effective fall prevention program can improve operational efficiency. On average, a serious fall-related injury adds 6.3 days to a patient’s hospital stay and costs approximately $14,056, according The Joint Commission.

    “Real-time communication between care teams impacts multiple aspects of a health system’s operations and is essential in improving patient safety,” said Brent Lang, president and CEO of Vocera. “I’m impressed by the way Medstar Montgomery Medical Center has integrated its clinical data with the Vocera Communication Platform to improve staff responsiveness and reduce falls. This innovative approach is a great example of how human-centered technology can elevate the patient experience.”

    About MedStar Montgomery Medical Center

    MedStar Montgomery Medical Center is a 138-bed not-for-profit hospital serving the greater Baltimore and Washington metropolitan areas. A proud member of MedStar Health, MedStar Montgomery is committed to delivering the latest in modern medicine and medical technology.

    About analyticsMD

    The analyticsMD platform empowers frontline hospital managers to make data-driven operational decisions in real time. Machine learning and artificial intelligence uses a hospital’s data along with proprietary external signals empower staff and improve patient satisfaction in the value-based healthcare system.To learn more about analyticsMD visit

    About Vocera

    Vocera Communications, Inc. offers one of the most robust clinical communications systems in healthcare. Installed in more than 1,300 organizations worldwide, Vocera delivers secure, integrated and intelligent communication solutions that enable care teams to collaborate more efficiently by delivering the right information, to the right person, on the right device, in the right location, at the right time. Vocera solutions provide hands-free voice communication, secure text messaging, patient engagement tools, and integrated clinical workflow with EHRs, nurse call systems and physiological monitors. These solutions help improve operational efficiency, quality of care, safety and satisfaction across the continuum of care. In addition to technology solutions, Vocera drives thought leadership and new standards in care to elevate patient, family, nurse and physician experiences via the company’s research collaborative, the Experience Innovation Network. Vocera is led by President and CEO Brent Lang and is headquartered in San Jose, California, with offices in San Francisco, Tennessee, Canada, India, United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom. Robert J. Zollars is the Chairman of the Board. For more information, visit and @VoceraComm on Twitter.

    The Vocera logo is a trademark of Vocera Communications, Inc. Vocera® is a trademark of Vocera Communications, Inc. registered in the United States and other jurisdictions. All other trademarks appearing in this release are the property of their respective owners.

  • September 20, 2016
    Mastectomy Patient Embraces ComfortSafe Anesthesia, Recovers with No Nausea

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