Welcome New Physicians

As of November 13, 2017 


Nikulkumar Chaudhari, MD 

House Staff

Ahmed Al Badri, MD


Christopher R. Menke, DPM

Obstetrics & Gynecology

Amy M. Rodatus, MD


Lattisha L. Bilbrew, MD



Neal Patel, MD


Bright Idea Program for Physicians

November 15 through November 30

Last year, we rolled out a program in which DeKalb Medical employees were asked to submit cost-saving ideas for our system and we called that the Bright Ideas Program. This initiative generated over 425 submissions and an estimated savings of more than $400,000.

Now we would like to offer this same opportunity to our physicians on our medical staff. We know that some of the best cost saving ideas will come from those closest to the patient. Please help us identify waste and solution(s) on how we can save money for our hospital system.

For more information and to submit your cost savings ideas please follow the link below. All “bright ideas” must be received by Thursday, November 30. Winners will receive iPads as prizes.

Web Link to Submit Bright Ideas: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/bi2017physicians

bright idea image



Light Up A Life Tree Lighting Planned for Thursday, November 30 at DeKalb Medical at North Decatur

Tree light imageJoin DeKalb Medical for some family fun to kick off the holiday season! Enjoy live music and refreshments in anticipation of the main event- our tree lighting. Unique gingerbread creations will be on display and attendees may vote for their favorite.

This holiday event takes place on the front lawn at 2701 North Decatur Road, Decatur from 5:30 -6:30 p.m. A brief program begins at 6:30 p.m. and the tree lights will be turned on at 7 p.m.

Experience the joy of giving! Lights on the tree recognize, honor or remember loved ones. Make a donation online by visiting us at http://www.dekalbmedical.org, or you can make your donation at the tree lighting. Any amount is appreciated. The hospital is also accepting donations of new, plain t-shirts and drawstring or elastic sweat pants for its Emergency Department closet. Guests may also take a peek at the newly-renovated Emergency Department reception area.

In case of inclement weather, the event will be held inside the Dr. Bobbie Bailey Tower. Complimentary parking is available. For more information, call 404-501-WELL or visit www.dekalbmedical.org.

Light Up A Life Flyer.

Updates from CEO Bob Wilson

DeKalb Medical entering into Exclusive Negotiations

I am pleased to announce to you today that with the unanimous recommendation of the physician select committee, we have signed a letter of intent to enter into exclusive negotiations with Emory Healthcare to become part of the Emory System.

We have been through a very thoughtful and deliberate process to get to this point and we are confident that this choice will enable us to grow and continue to serve our community with high quality healthcare for years to come.

The physician select committee, led by Mark Stern, M.D., did a wonderful job representing the interests of independent, contracted and employed physicians as they evaluated the various proposals. I appreciate the time and care they put into their evaluation and ultimate recommendation.  Their commitment to the well-being of our community was evident.

An important part of the physician select committee’s evaluation was being able to hear directly from the health systems that made proposals. We’ve scheduled two physician meetings this week so that you, too, can hear what the physician committee heard from Emory Healthcare.  We are cancelling the bi-annual medical staff meeting tonight at North Decatur and replacing it with a meeting tomorrow, Wednesday, November 15 at 6 pm in the theatre at North Decatur campus, and a meeting Thursday, November 16 at 7:30 am in Community Room at the Hillandale campus. Jon Lewin M.D., Emory Healthcare president, chief executive officer and chairman of the board, along with some of his colleagues, will be in attendance to discuss the partnership.  I encourage you to attend one of these meetings.

The letter of intent precedes the work to complete a definitive agreement in the next 60-90 days. Once we have signed the definitive agreement, the regulatory process will begin with the State’s Attorney General.  If everything goes as planned, we could become part of Emory Healthcare by late spring/early summer 2018.

Thank you for choosing DeKalb Medical for your patients. This move will strengthen our ability to serve you and your patients well.  We look forward to a long and healthy future serving our community.

North Decatur Emergency Department Opens Renovated Reception Area

On October 23, we opened the renovated reception area of the North Decatur Emergency Department. It’s absolutely beautiful!  We are grateful to those including our physicians and staff who donated to the Foundation to make this possible.

We continued to deliver services through this multi-phase project. Although it’s not done yet, we’re looking forward to the project being complete and open on November 28.  Special thanks to Marc Mathai, Eric Dennin, Michael Crawford and everyone on the renovation project task force for all of their work.

Our Financial Audit for Fiscal Year 2017 is Complete and Filed

As you may know, we did not complete our audit for fiscal year 2016 until February of this year, though it was due October 31, 2016. We beat the deadline this year and the results, while not where they need to be, showed a slight improvement in operating performance over the prior year.  Significantly, we met all of our bond covenants and the auditors found no deficiencies.

Partnership Update – Letter of Intent Coming Soon

While we cannot discuss the details of our ongoing partnership discussions, we do want to reassure you that they continue to go well and we are optimistic that we will execute a letter of intent (LOI) in the not too distant future. The LOI doesn’t make us “married,” but it does mean we’ve selected the preferred partner and have become “engaged.”   We are confident that we will have a great future as we continue to serve our community.

Hallway Courtesy is a Priority

As we approach the end of the calendar year, we face our busiest time of year. We must remain focused on providing excellent clinical care, as well as excellent customer service. Remember the 10 – 5 rule. When you see someone at 10 feet, you must acknowledge them.  When you’re within 5 feet, you must speak to them.  Our hallway culture says volumes to our community about us.

Cell Phone Usage in Public Areas

Our CEO Bob Wilson received great feedback from visitors tell him, “Ya’ll are the friendliest hospital we’ve ever been in.” It’s totally within our power to make our environment warm and welcoming, but we’ve noticed one big obstacle – our phones!  We want you to make a commitment, along with our CEO and staff to not use your phone while in public areas.   If you are on your phone, texting or listening to music through ear phones, you are not greeting people in the hallway.  Please choose to give your attention to our patients, our visitors and each other rather than your phone and hold others accountable to do the same.

Anesthesiology is the Newest Specialty Added to Online UpToDate Resource

Anesthesiology image

Wolters Kluwer UpToDate introduces its 25th specialty, Anesthesiology! Topics in the specialty are written to assist anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists with finding the best evidence to manage perioperative consultation, intraoperative anesthetic management, post operative acute care, and optimal pain management.

This new specialty covers anesthesia topics related to surgical procedures and other interventions, pain management, opioid avoidance, blood transfusion, and postoperative critical care. Led by UpToDate Editors‐in‐Chief, Roberta Hines, MD; Stephanie B. Jones, MD; and Lena S. Sun, MD, the topics in the specialty are written to assist anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists with finding the best evidence to manage perioperative care for complex patients undergoing common and uncommon procedures, including preoperative consultation, intraoperative anesthetic management, postoperative acute care, and optimal pain management.

The new specialty is also a vital resource for general practice clinicians as well as specialists such as surgeons who routinely care for patients together with anesthesiologists.

Please contact the Health Sciences Library with any questions.

Explore the new anesthesiology topics in UpToDate.


Understanding Our Leapfrog Scores

DeKalb Medical at Hillandale along with Emory Midtown and WellStar Atlanta Medical were listed for getting a patient safety grade of “D”. The Leapfrog Group is an organization that was created to strongly encourage hospitals to aggressively address patient safety and quality by exposing some of the realities in our industry.

Over the years, other organizations have joined them pushing for awareness and transparency around a variety of indicators that affect safety and quality. The movement has been a positive one for patients, and we at DeKalb Medical fully embrace quality improvement and work every day to make sure that we are healing, not harming our patients.

Organizations such as the Leapfrog Group are trying to provide the public with a simple easy way for consumers to assess a hospital’s quality and record of patient safety so they can make informed decisions when choosing a hospital.   That’s a reasonable expectation, but a difficult task.  To do this, they take multiple sets of data and apply a methodology they’ve developed to produce a single patient safety score or grade.  Factors such as hospital acquired infection rates, patient experience data, use and quality of implementation of best practices such as ICU specialists and computerized physician order entry, and clinical outcomes data are included in the calculation.  Some information, such as a patient’s socioeconomic status, education level and lifestyle habits are not factored into the assessment.

DeKalb Medical is Confident We Can Improve

We can improve the C at North Decatur and the D at Hillandale. One of the areas CEO Bob Wilson suggest that we can continue to improve upon is HAIs. For three months, we have had no hospital acquired infections at Hillandale and this is a testament to the staff’s work to prevent them. Quality and patient safety takes diligence and attention to detail every day.  It also takes structure and focused planning, which DeKalb Medical does through our tactical teams.

Ellen Hargett, director of our Quality Institute, describes it this way   “Leapfrog Group provides a good framework for measuring patient safety.  Unfortunately, there are measures we improve and control right now, and measures we can’t.  We are doing everything within our power and resource availability to improve the measures we control.   We are not focusing on the past, we’re focusing on today and tomorrow.  The tactical teams approach we use shows results.  For instance, dramatic reduction of catheter-associated urinary tract infections has occurred because of the combined efforts of physicians and staff.”

As individuals, we need to embrace the fact that we all play a part in patient safety and that what we do or don’t do will affect our ratings in the future. Washing your hands, making sure communication with your patients is clear, following proper processes to make sure patients don’t fall are tangible things that affect our results. What we are doing now will show up in these grades in 18 months.

If you have any questions, please contact Ellen or Bob [insert contact information].