A message from Jim Forstner, CEO, Emory Decatur Hospital, Emory Hillandale Hospital, Emory Long-Term Acute Care

James F.Hello,

This spring is proving to be an exciting time for us at Emory Decatur Hospital, Emory Hillandale Hospital and Emory Long-Term Acute Care. Included in this issue is an overview of the renovations and improvements we are planning and implementing as we begin to reap the benefits of being part of Emory Healthcare..

I also want to take this opportunity to let you know that two key leaders in our organization are retiring. We wish Sharon Mawby, Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) and Rev. Dr. McClellon Cox, Director of Pastoral Care well as they enter a new phase in their lives. Both have made significant contributions and will be missed. We are opening a search for Sharon’s replacement and have hired an experienced Director of Pastoral Care, Dr. Beth Jackson-Jordan, who comes to us from Emory St. Joseph’s (see feature in this issue).

Sharon recently led the implementation of a formalized process of bedside shift reporting for nurses. All nurses in the organization have been trained on this process which has proven to be an important part of the patient experience at the other Emory hospitals. We expect this to positively impact patient safety as well as patient/family engagement at our three hospitals.

Finally, I encourage you to mark your calendar and plan to join me for breakfast or dinner during a physician town hall at the end of April or early May. I look forward to providing you with updates on our improvements, strategic plan and continuing integration into Emory Healthcare. I am anxious to hear from you on how things are going as well.

Physician Town Halls – MARK YOUR CALENDAR

Wednesday, 4/24 – 7-8 a.m. Breakfast will be served in the Emory Decatur Hospital theatre.

Monday, 4/29 – 7-8 p.m. Dinner will be served in the Emory Hillandale Hospital community board room.

Wednesday, 5/1 – 7-8 p.m. Dinner will be served in the Emory Decatur Hospital Keeton auditorium.

Monday, 5/6 – 7-8 a.m. Breakfast will be served in the Emory Hillandale Hospital (location to be determined).

As always, thank you for all you do for our hospitals and please let me know if I may be of assistance.



Bedside shift report implemented to advance patient safety and engagement

Pictured: Nurses Jyothis Joseph and Trisha Adams demonstrate a bedside shift report on the 3400 unit at Emory Decatur Hospital. Manager Adolphus Acolatses says the nurses spend about 5-10 minutes on each bedside shift change, depending on the complexity of the patient’s condition.

Inpatient units at Emory Decatur Hospital, Emory Hillandale Hospital and Emory-Long-Term Acute Care began formally conducting bedside shift report (BSR) on April 1 to standardize nursing shift changes. Bedside shift reports are viewed as an opportunity to reduce errors and ensure supportive communication between nurses and patients. Data shows that when a shift change occurs at the bedside and involves the patient as well as their family, the patient experience improves greatly.

bedside report

Many of our units were conducting bedside shift report and now all units are routinely changing shifts at the bedside, as well as sharing consistent information. From a patient’s perspective, they feel empowered to participate in their own care and felt safer when experiencing shift reports at the bedside. They also appreciate the opportunity to hear what is being communicated about their care and ask questions. Nurses find it beneficial to build a rapport with the patient and spend less time writing a shift report. Care providers at hospitals throughout the country have reported less patient falls at shift change and reduced medication errors thanks to the bedside shift reports.

Exciting renovations and improvements underway

Investment throughout 2019 to surpass $44 million

A $44 million capital investment is planned this fiscal year at our three hospitals to complete much-needed renovations. As you recall, Emory Healthcare made a commitment to invest $239 million in our system over seven years and this is just the beginning.

About $25 million in projects are currently underway. These improvements will allow us to better meet the needs of our community, physicians and staff. A steering committee comprised of leaders, including physicians, developed and prioritized the project list.

The focus is to address quality and safety issues, as well as update many outdated hospital areas to accommodate more patients and improve efficiency and workflow.

In addition to major projects being contracted through outside resources, our building services department is handling much of the work thus increasing the investment.

Some projects, such as high-traffic area renovations, additional patient rooms and landscaping, will be more visible than others. Several of the less visible projects contribute to patient safety, workflow productivity, increased security and financial savings.

Some of the projects approved include:

All three hospitals

  • purchase new infusion pumps
  • update pharmacies
  • replace many patient beds and mattresses
  • local IT upgrades and integration with Emory Healthcare IT systems

Emory Decatur Hospital

  • refresh the operating rooms (OR) and purchase new OR equipment
  • renovate the 3rd floor hallways and patient rooms
  • creating infusion pharmacy and lab for cancer center
  • refresh the Diagnostic Imaging Center
  • update the main lobby
  • repave and stripe parking lots
  • modernize elevators
  • refresh the Keeton Auditorium and theatre
  • install video integration system in theatre to allow broadcasts between all EHC facilities
  • re-upholster the furniture in the Dr. Bobbie Bailey Tower
  • purchase milk scanning software and equipment for mother/baby
  • upgrade patient monitoring equipment in OR, PACU, NICU, Labor & Delivery, Cardio Vascular, ED

Emory Hillandale Hospital

  • refresh the operating rooms (OR) and purchase new OR equipment
  • update the main lobby
  • refresh the radiology department
  • upgrade security lighting for parking lot
  • update the emergency department wait room
  • upgrade patient monitoring equipment in OR, GI, PACU, Cardio Vascular, ED

Emory Long-Term Acute Care

  • add 12 new patient rooms

If you have questions about the renovations and improvements, please email edh.communications@emoryhealthcare.org.

New Director of Spiritual Health starts June 1

rev jackson jordan

Rev. Dr. Elizabeth (Beth) Jackson-Jordan, EdD, is the new Director of Spiritual Health for EDH, EHH and ELTAC. Reverend Jackson-Jordan will join us on June 1, transferring from Emory St. Joseph’s Hospital. Until June, she will offer guidance to our chaplaincy as well as attend leadership meetings to begin getting acquainted with our operating unit.

Reverend Jackson-Jordan has a national reputation for her engagement of teaching post-graduates toward their board certification in healthcare chaplaincy. She will look at how we can incorporate clinical pastoral education into our operating unit.

She is also astute in the areas of clinical and professional ethics, work-life staff support and research in spiritual health. She offers compassionate leadership in alleviating hospital distress in patients and mitigating burnout in providers which is a priority for Emory Healthcare.

“Reverend Dr. McClellon Cox has fostered such as strong chaplaincy program built on trust and confidence,” said Reverend Jackson-Jordan. “I look forward to continuing his efforts and expanding some of the EHC system chaplaincy programs at Emory Decatur Hospital, Emory Hillandale Hospital and Emory Long-Term Acute Care.”

Reverend Jackson-Jordan’s educational background includes a bachelor’s in music education, a Master of Divinity degree and a Doctor of Education from UNC Charlotte. Beth is ordained for ministry and endorsed to Chaplaincy by the Alliance of Baptists.

She lives in the Avondale-Estates community and enjoys gardening, hiking, playing piano, singing, jewelry-making and reading.


Bonk and Levett Named to Emory Healthcare Board of Directors

Cathy Bonk MD 2

Gregory Levett

Catherine M. Bonk, MD and Gregory B. Levett, Sr. have been named to the Emory Healthcare Board of Directors. Bonk is a Decatur-based obstetrician and gynecologist and is managing partner of Atlanta GYN&OB and Decatur Midwifery. Levett is the founder and CEO of Levett and Sons Funeral Homes and Crematories in Gwinnett, DeKalb and Rockdale counties. Both serve on the board of Emory Decatur Hospital, Emory Hillandale Hospital and Emory Long Term Acute Care, formerly known as DeKalb Medical.

The appointments provide for representation from the former DeKalb Medical organization which became part of Emory Healthcare on September 1, 2018.


Heartburn Solutions Center offers relief for patients suffering with GERD

April is Esophageal Cancer Awareness month. Emory Decatur Hospital and the Heartburn Solutions Center are leaders in the education, evaluation and treatment of any GERD symptoms and complications that patients may experience.

If you have patients suffering from GERD symptoms, get them the relief they deserve. Refer patients to nurse coordinator, Pam Briggs at 404-501-4844, where she can speak about treatment options. Additionally, more information can be found at The Heartburn Solutions Center website, www.dekalbmedical.org/our-services/gerd.

Outpatient Rehab expands service offerings for patients

In recognition of Occupational Therapy (OT) month, the Rehab Services department announces expanded services in their Outpatient Clinics.

Outpatient Rehab at Emory Decatur and Emory Hillandale Hospitals now offer Certified Hand Therapy.

Other OT services offered include:

  • Rehab for hand injuries
  • Trigger finger
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome, and
  • Arthritis management

Patients receiving services in these clinics will receive individualized, one-on-one care, every session. Now accepting new patients, referrals can be faxed directly to the department scheduler.

Emory Decatur Hospital location

2675 North Decatur Road, Suite 105

Ph: 404.501.5140

Fax: 404.501.7186

Emory Hillandale Hospital location

5900 Hillandale Drive, Suite 110

Ph: 404.501.8140

Fax: 404.501.8387