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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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  • January 11, 2018

    Babyscripts Remotely Monitors Pregnant Patients and Provides Real-time Feedback and Intervention


    Washington, D.C., January 11, 2018 – A new mobile app is changing how expectant mothers are receiving prenatal care at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. Midwives at the Hospital Center can now remotely monitor their pregnant patients’ progress and health using the Babyscripts™ app. It’s the first mobile clinical tool that allows the midwives to elevate the prenatal care experience for their maternity patients.

    Mothers enrolled in the program receive weekly educational updates tailored to their gestational period through the mobile app. The moms also track their weight and blood pressure through a Bluetooth®-enabled blood pressure cuff and weight scale, and the information is sent to their midwife. If the blood pressure or weight gain is too high or considered abnormal, the data is flagged, and the midwife can call for the mother to come in. These two metrics are important because they could indicate potential complications, such as preeclampsia, a serious condition that causes high blood pressure, kidney damage and other problems.

    The combination of home monitoring plus notification of ‘abnormal triggers’ has reduced the number of face-to-face visits, some from 14 to nine prenatal visits, but that can vary depending on the individual. The program is offered to women whose pregnancy is considered low-risk.

    “We piloted the app with our patients about a year ago and the feedback was overwhelmingly positive. They loved it,” said Loral Patchen, PhD, CNM, director of Midwifery at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. “Babyscripts creates additional flexibility within our practice and provides a common bank of knowledge that allows us to personalize care to a greater degree during office visits. And both midwives and mothers appreciate that opportunity.”

    Additionally, Babyscripts will be working with the Hospital Center’s Teen Alliance for Prepared Parenting (TAPP) program to provide a technology to promote healthier living and improve the overall well-being of pregnant and parenting youth. The Babyscripts Care Navigator module is the first-of-its-kind initiative for pregnant teen moms, providing automated patient education in the form of daily tips, along with the ability to interact with the moms through a HIPAA-compliant secure text messaging platform.

    Currently, the Babyscripts features are only available to patients of MedStar Washington Hospital Center’s Midwifery Practice and the TAPP program.


    About MedStar Washington Hospital Center:
    MedStar Washington Hospital Center is a 912-bed, major teaching and research hospital. It is the largest private, not-for-profit hospital in the nation’s capital, among the 100 largest hospitals in the nation and a major referral center for treating the most complex cases. Its cardiology program is highly acclaimed and its cardiac surgery program has consistently earned the highest national rating–three stars–from the Society of Thoracic Surgeons. It also is a respected top facility in the areas of cancer, diabetes & endocrinology, Ear, Nose & Throat, gastroenterology & GI surgery, geriatrics, gynecology, nephrology, pulmonology and urology. It operates MedSTAR, a nationally-verified level I trauma center with a state-of-the-art fleet of helicopters and ambulances, and also operates the region’s only adult Burn Center.

  • January 10, 2018


    In Memoriam
    Edward A. Eckenhoff
    March 4, 1943 – January 10, 2018

    Edward A. Eckenhoff passed away peacefully with family and friends at his side on January 10, 2018, at the age of 74, at his home in Naples, Fla.  He is survived by his devoted wife Judi Eckenhoff, his brothers Walt Eckenhoff and Roderic Eckenhoff, many nieces and nephews, and their dog Bogey.  He was a gifted leader and remarkable friend.  His accomplishments and zest for life inspired everyone who knew him. 

    Ed grew up on the New Jersey shore and excelled at football and track throughout high school.  He went on to earn a B.S. in Biology from Transylvania University in Kentucky in 1966, a Master’s degree in Education and Psychology from the University of Kentucky in 1968, and a Master’s degree in Health Care Administration from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, in 1972.

    In 1963 at age 20, he was in a motor vehicle accident that killed his college roommate, who was driving, and left Ed with paraplegia.   For the rest of his life, he used braces and crutches to walk.  This was a defining moment in Ed’s life and led to a career of helping others with physical disabilities.

    In 1974, Ed became vice president of administration at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago.  It was in Chicago that Ed met the love of his life, Judi, who was working in the same field as an occupational therapist.  They were soon married and Ed and Judi moved to Washington, D.C., in 1983 to pursue a dream of building a freestanding medical rehabilitation hospital to serve the Greater Washington community and patients throughout the country that required specialized rehabilitative care.  In 1986, the National Rehabilitation Hospital opened its doors under Ed’s leadership, with the backing of a prestigious Board of Directors that Ed handpicked to join him.  From the beginning, NRH was part of what has become MedStar Health, the largest health care provider in the D.C., and Baltimore regions. 

    Under Ed’s leadership, MedStar NRH grew dramatically and has since served thousands of inpatients and outpatients; has grown from a single site of care to more than 50 outpatient locations in the region; has become a center for training and education for rehabilitation professionals; and today boasts a significant research portfolio aimed at improving function, cognition, and independence.  It is consistently rated among the best rehabilitation hospitals in the country by US News & World Report, and enjoys a national reputation for excellence in the field.  During his career, Ed helped thousands of people living with disabilities.  He was an inspiration to us all, and created a culture of care that continues to permeate our halls and resonate with our patients.

    Ed was an avid and passionate golfer and used one arm to swing.  He always drew attention and admiration on the golf course not only because of the way he played, but also because he seldom lost a game.  His zest for the game of golf was infectious.  While Ed loved the competition, his love for golf was more about the camaraderie and the friendships that were built on the course. 

    Ed Eckenhoff was on the Board of the American Hospital Association, a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, a member of the Healthcare Research and Development Institute (HRDI), Chair of the American Medical Rehabilitation Providers Association (AMRPA), and served on the President’s Commission on Care for America’s Returning Wounded Warriors.  He was “Washingtonian of the Year” in 1989, and received an honorary doctorate in Humane Letters from his alma mater, Transylvania University.

    Those that knew Ed understood his unique ability to live life to its fullest; to never let obstacles get in the way, and to exude a love for life that few others can emulate. 

    Arrangements are underway to hold a memorial service in the spring.  Ed’s family is requesting that donations be made to the Adding Life to Years® Campaign with MedStar National Rehabilitation Network.  Please visit or make checks payable to MedStar NRH, 102 Irving St NW, Washington, D.C., 20010.

  • January 10, 2018

    Comprehensive-Stroke-Center-The-Joint-Commission-Certification-BadgeMedStar Georgetown University Hospital recently earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Heart-Check mark for Advanced Certification for Comprehensive Stroke Centers.

    MedStar Georgetown is now one of only 156 healthcare organizations in the United States to have earned this certification in highly-specialized stroke care. To be eligible for certification, hospitals must demonstrate compliance with stroke-related standards as a Primary Stroke Center and meet additional requirements, including those related to advanced imaging capabilities, 24/7 availability of specialized treatments, and providing staff with the unique education and competencies to care for complex stroke patients. 

    “We have a superb multi-disciplinary team of providers, nurses, scientists and educators who are dedicated to providing the highest level of care for patients with cerebrovascular disease,” said Dr. Andrew Stemer, director of Stroke Neurology at MedStar Georgetown. “The Joint Commission recognizing MedStar Georgetown as a Comprehensive Stroke Center confirms that we are one of the elite programs in the nation.”

    Achieving certification as a Comprehensive Stroke Center was the culmination of years of hard work by a multidisciplinary team, including stroke care experts from: Neurology, Neurosurgery, Neuro Critical Care, Emergency Medicine, Neuroradiology, Neuro Interventional Radiology, Case Management, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Regulatory Readiness, and Physiatry. MedStar Georgetown’s stroke team is anchored by Dr. Stemer and the Hospital’s specially-trained stroke neurologists, as well as a dedicated nurse practitioner, nurse navigator, and program coordinator. The Hospital’s stroke team collaborated to evaluate and enhance the care received by stroke patients, which included implementing new policies and providing additional training for associates, as well as expanding the collection and review of key data elements critical to the care of stroke patients.

    “This certification shows our commitment to a higher standard of service and quality of care for our patients,” said MedStar Georgetown’s Stroke Program Coordinator Amanda Lantzy, MSN, RN. “Our expanded services ensure that we can treat and provide excellent quality of care to the most complex stroke patients around the clock. We have dedicated, specially-trained clinicians available at any time of day or night, including board-certified vascular neurologists. Having their expertise readily available ensures our patients are receiving the care they need which provides better long term outcomes for stroke survivors.”

    "By achieving this advanced certification, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital has thoroughly demonstrated the greatest level of commitment to the care of its patients with a complex stroke condition,” said Dr. Mark R. Chassin, president and CEO of The Joint Commission. “Certification is a voluntary process and The Joint Commission commends MedStar Georgetown for successfully undertaking this challenge to elevate the standard of its care for the community it serves.”

    Nancy Brown, chief executive officer of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association remarked, “The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association congratulates MedStar Georgetown University Hospital on achieving Comprehensive Stroke Center certification. Meeting the standards for Comprehensive Stroke Center certification represents a commitment to deliver high quality care to all patients affected by stroke.”

    This certification provides validation for the public that MedStar Georgetown maintains a consistently high level of quality, using effective, data-driven performance improvement practices. Above all, patients who receive stroke care at MedStar Georgetown know that they are being cared for by nationally-recognized experts who are part of a well-coordinated and highly-specialized team.

    MedStar Georgetown Stoke Team


  • January 09, 2018

    Using Technology to Transform Health Care

    COLUMBIA, MD — MedStar Health is designated “Most Wired” according to results of the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) HealthCare’s Most Wired survey results, released this month. The designation marks MedStar’s 14th appearance on the list.

    Based on an analysis of the Most Wired survey results, hospitals and health systems at the forefront of using healthcare Information Technology (IT) to improve the delivery of care are maximizing the benefits of foundational technologies and embracing new technologies that support population management and value-based care. The most successful organizations not only adopt technology, but apply it strategically to achieve great outcomes.

     “With key foundational technologies in place, such as our systemwide Electronic Health Record (EHR) and Enterprise Resource Planning systems, MedStar Information Services and business partners are focused on sustained optimization efforts to enhance workflow and productivity for our associates, as well as the safety and quality of care we provide patients,” says Scott MacLean, senior vice president and chief information officer, MedStar Health. “It is rewarding to be recognized for these efforts.”

    MedStar is “Most Wired,” thanks to the work of dedicated teams that continue to make enhancements that ultimately benefit patients, indicates MacLean. One such benefit is the implementation of bedside medical device integration with the MedStar EHR. Patient data from pumps, monitors and other devices flows directly into the system, eliminating the need to manually enter the data in the patient’s health record. This improves the accuracy and timeliness of the data and gives clinicians more time to focus on patients.

    MedStar also recognizes the use of mobile devices to improve care is on the rise both within the healthcare setting and at home. It is one of 13 leading providers to partner with Apple in the development of an iPhone Health app that allows patients to access their health information using Apple’s iPhone. Additionally, MedStar is supporting providers’ use of mobile phones to view patient data and capture clinical updates.

    Furthermore, the investment in interoperability is a key reason behind the recognition. MedStar is a longstanding partner of Maryland’s regional health information exchange, Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients (CRISP), and works to increase the reporting and sharing of clinical data with other regional providers with different EHRs.

    “This award is a testament to our team’s commitment to embracing innovative ways of delivering the highest levels of quality care and providing the best experience for our patients and providers,” says Kenneth A. Samet, FACHE, president and chief executive officer, MedStar Health. “Most importantly, advances in healthcare IT better enable our ability to serve our patients, those who care for them, and our communities.”

    HealthCare’s Most Wired, now in its 20th year, traditionally tracked the adoption of healthcare IT in hospitals and health systems. CHIME took over the Most Wired program and revised the survey questions and methodology this year to highlight strengths and gaps in the industry. The goal is to identify best practices and promote the strategic use of healthcare IT to elevate the health and care of communities around the world. To learn more about the Most Wired Survey and this year’s recipients, visit


  • January 09, 2018

    Published online ahead of print in The Journal of Nursing Care Quality, the study sought to identify barriers to implementing a technology-based system to deliver diabetes survival skills education while patients are in the hospital. The educational system helps to send patients home with needed skills to manage their diabetes. The research team is Kelly Smith, PhD; Kelley Baker, MA; Joan Bardsley, MBA, RN, CDE, Patricia  McCartney, PhD, RN; and Michelle Magee, MD. Read more


  • January 08, 2018

    Brings Expertise in Advanced Surgical Breast Reconstruction Techniques

    Baltimore—(January 8, 2018)— Gabriel Del Corral, MD, a fellowship-trained plastic and reconstructive surgeon who specializes in microsurgical advancements in reconstructive breast surgery, has joined MedStar Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery at Medstar Franklin Square Medical Center, effective Jan. 1. 

    Dr. Del Corral is board certified by both the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Plastic Surgery. He has extensive experience performing a wide variety of advanced breast reconstruction techniques following breast cancer or reconstruction after preventive mastectomy surgery, that lead to better results and fewer complications. These include various flap techniques that require transferring or transplanting tissue and blood vessels from one part of the body to another part of the body using a high-powered microscope in the operating room. Dr. Del Corral’s skills include using surgical implants; the two-stage tissue expander/implant procedure, in which saline is added to stretch the skin over the pectoral area and create a breast mound, and the one-stage direct to implant reconstruction.

    “We are excited about what Dr. Del Corral’s expertise adds to our breast cancer program,” said Linda Rogers, Vice President of Oncology for the Baltimore region of MedStar Health. “There are so many options for patients, both men and women now in cancer care, and it’s so important to have the most cutting edge technology, services and surgical skills set available. Dr. Del Corral’s experience brings highly specialized cosmetic options to our breast cancer patients, but also to our region in plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine.”

    Dr. Del Corral also specializes in the treatment of post-surgical lymphedema and breast cancer-related lymphedema.

    He has been named a “Top Doctor” by Baltimore Magazine for plastic surgery, cosmetic surgery, breast reconstruction and body contouring.

    He sees patients at the Harry and Jeannette Weinberg Cancer Center on the campus of MedStar Franklin Square, 9103 Franklin Square Drive, Suite 1500, Baltimore, MD 21237.

    To make an appointment with Dr. Del Corral, or for more information on the services he provides, call 443-777-7631.




    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.


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