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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 31, 2017

    MedStar Franklin Square Holds 11th Annual Event; First Time for MedStar Harbor Hospital

    BALTIMORE, MD—(October 31, 2017)—Baltimoreans won’t need to leave their cars to get a flu shot this weekend.

    At MedStar Harbor Hospital Saturday, attendees of the hospital’s first drive-thru flu clinic can get a free flu shot right through their vehicle window, just by driving up on the south parking lot of the campus:  3001 S. Hanover Street.  Clinicians will be ready to administer the shots to anyone in the car aged six months and up, who don’t have a known allergy to the vaccine, at no charge.

    And for their 11th year, more than 30 clinical staff members of MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center will be in place Sunday at the Community College of Baltimore County, Essex campus, to give out free flu shots starting at 8 am. The clinic will continue until noon or when supplies run out.  More than 1400 people were vaccinated during last year’s event.

    Since 2007, MedStar Health has worked closely with county agencies to hold the clinic, including the Baltimore County Health and Human Services, Police, Fire and Public Works departments, and the Community College of Baltimore County, which allows the use of its Essex campus.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 200,000 Americans are hospitalized each year because of flu complications. The number of people who die each year from flu-related causes in the United States ranges from 3,000 to 49,000.

    To protect against the flu, the CDC recommends annual vaccination for those six months and older, as well as those at higher risk of developing flu complications, including children under five; adults over 65; pregnant women; residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities; those with weakened immune systems; and people with chronic illnesses such as asthma, heart disease, kidney disease and diabetes.

    MedStar Harbor Hospital

    When:                 Saturday, November 4, 2017, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. or until supplies run out

    Where:               MedStar Harbor Hospital, 3001 S Hanover St, Baltimore, south parking lot

    MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center

    When:                Sunday, November 5, 2017, 8 a.m. until Noon, or when supplies run out

    Where:               Community College of Baltimore County, Essex campus, 7201 Rossville Blvd, Baltimore


    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.

    About MedStar Harbor Hospital

    After more than a century of healing, MedStar Harbor Hospital is a mainstay in the community, serving patients from Baltimore City, and Anne Arundel, Baltimore and Howard counties at our convenient waterside location, with the services of a large, regional medical center in a smaller, more personal environment. With more than 350 affiliated physicians representing 30 medical and surgical specialties, and 1,200 associates, the hospital offers a full range of health care services for patients from infancy through the senior years. From general medicine and surgery, obstetrics, diabetes, pain management, arthritis, orthopaedics, and geriatrics to cardiology and urology, and now behavioral health, our team of caring physicians and associates serves the unique needs of every patient. In 2016, MedStar Harbor Hospital was named a top hospital in Maryland and in the Baltimore metro area by U.S. News & World Report, receiving high performance ratings in specialty areas, including Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Gynecology, Gastroenterology & GI Surgery, Heart Failure, Pulmonology, and Orthopaedics.

  • October 19, 2017

    First Acute Care Facility in the District to Achieve Designation

    Washington, D.C., October 19, 2017 – MedStar Washington Hospital Center is the first acute care hospital in the nation’s capital to achieve the prestigious Pathway to Excellence® designation by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, a subsidiary of the American Nurses Association. The designation identifies the Hospital Center as one of the best places for nurses to work. 

    The Pathway to Excellence designation is granted only to hospitals that have created a work environment where nurses’ contributions are valued, professional development is supported, and nurses are integral to decision-making.

    “We are extremely proud of this designation, which honors the effort our nurses put into developing their practice, their professional expertise and their care for our patients,” said Susan Eckert, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, CENP, senior vice president and Chief Nursing Executive at MedStar Washington Hospital Center

    Earning the designation required an extensive application process, including the involvement of nurses from across the hospital, the submission of a 1,500-page evidence-based document, and the participation of at least 60 percent of the Hospital Center’s nearly 2,300 nurses in a confidential online survey. At the end of the survey, 75 percent of participants validated that MedStar Washington Hospital Center meets the Pathway to Excellence’s clinical, professional development and supportive nursing practice standards.

    “The Pathway to Excellence designation confirms to our patients, community and region that our nurses are fully engaged in our mission and in leading our hospital forward to strengthen their profession and provide optimal patient care,” added Eckert.

    The Pathway to Excellence designation has become widely sought as a way to attract nurses in a highly competitive nurse recruiting market. Only 152 hospitals in the United States are currently Pathway designated.


    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.

    About American Nurses Credentialing Center:
    The American Nurses Credentialing Center, a subsidiary of the American Nurses Association, provides individuals and organizations throughout the nursing profession with the resources they need to achieve practice excellence. ANCC’s internationally renowned credentialing programs certify nurses in specialty practice areas; recognize health care organizations for promoting safe, positive work environments through the Pathway to Excellence and Pathway to Excellence in Long Term Care programs; and accredit providers of continuing nursing education. In addition, ANCC provides leading-edge information and education services and products to support its core credentialing programs.

  • October 17, 2017
    MedStar Union Memorial Hospital is seeking to learn more about the health needs of our community.
  • October 09, 2017
    New Radial Lounge at MedStar Union Memorial Hospital Optimizes Recovery Atmosphere
  • October 09, 2017

    WASHINGTON When combined with an already FDA-approved chemotherapy, a novel agent developed by researchers at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, appears to halt the ability of Ewing sarcoma to grow and progress.

    The finding, in cell lines and animal models, warrants clinical investigation to see if the combination would be an effective treatment as well as a less toxic alternative to current therapy for the rare bone cancer, the researchers say.

    The study, published October 3 in the journal Science Signaling (Inhibition of the oncogenic fusion protein EWS-FLI1 AQ1 causes G2-M cell cycle arrest and enhanced vincristine sensitivity in Ewing’s sarcoma), tests a combination of YK-4-279, the compound developed at Georgetown, with vincristine in laboratory and mice studies. Vincristine is one of the chemotherapy drugs now used to treat Ewing sarcoma.  

    “Each of the two drugs impacts the cancer cell’s ability to survive, but they do it in a way that magnifies their effectiveness compared to if they were used alone. It’s like a left hook followed by an uppercut,” says the study’s senior investigator, Jeffrey Toretsky, MD, the new chief of Pediatric Hematology Oncology at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, and researcher at Georgetown Lombardi.

    In the United States, about 500 children and young adults are diagnosed with Ewing sarcoma annually. Between 60 to 70 percent of patients survive more than five years, but with many late effects from treatment. Patients with Ewing sarcoma are currently treated with a combination of five different chemotherapy drugs, which often damages nerves and few treatments lead to a cure when the cancer progresses, Toretsky says.

    Ewing sarcoma is caused by the exchange of DNA between two chromosomes. The resulting EWSR1-FLI1 gene produces a fusion protein, EWS-FLI1, responsible for cancer’s growth. In 2006, Toretsky and his team discovered that the fusion protein binds to another protein, RNA helicase A (RHA), which is important for cancer progression.

    YK-4-279 directly inhibits EWS-FLI1. Toretsky’s work on YK-4-279 led to the eventual development of TK216, a first-in-class small molecule that is now being studied by Oncternal Therapeutics in a clinical trial in patients with relapsed or refractory Ewing sarcoma.

    In this study, Toretsky led a team of researchers that tested 69 different anti-cancer drugs to find an agent that would work synergistically with YK-4-279. They discovered that together, the drugs produce a “microtubule catastrophe” in Ewing sarcoma cancer cells.

    Microtubules are tube-like structures that help cells keep their shape and act like highways that transport cellular proteins. They also pull apart chromosomes when they divide, and it is this action that is particularly affected by the drug combo, Toretsky says.

    “Cancer needs to grow, and to do that, the cells need to divide and multiply. This is the step both drugs target, but in different ways,” he says.

    According to Toretsky, Oncternal is planning to test the combination of TK216 and vincristine in patients.

    Co-authors include Georgetown researchers Stefan K. Zöllnerm MD (the study lead author), Saravana P. Selvanathan, PhD, Garrett T. Graham, PhD, Ryan M. T. Commins, MD, Sung Hyeok Hong, DVM, PhD, research fellow Eric Moseley, college student Sydney Parks, medical student Jessica N. Haladyna, Hayriye V. Erkizan, PhD, and Aykut Üren, PhD; Uta Dirksen, MD, from the Essen University Hospital, Germany; and Michael D. Hogarty, MD, from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

    The Georgetown researchers are funded by the Children’s Cancer Foundation, Nick Currey Fund, St. Baldrick’s Foundation, Alan B. Slifka Foundation, CureSearch, Go4theGoal, Liddy Shiver Sarcoma Initiative, as well as a Burroughs Wellcome Clinical Scientist Award in Translational Research and the NIH (RC4CA156509, RO1CA133662, and R01CA138212).

    Georgetown University owns the underlying YK-4-279 technology and related intellectual property invented by Toretsky, Üren, et al., and has licensed the technology to Oncternal for development as a potential therapeutic agent for cancer, including Ewing sarcoma. Toretsky is a paid scientific advisor to Oncternal.                                           

  • October 03, 2017
    Record Number of Registrants For This Year's Race

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