CaroMont Health A Gold Star Standard Hospital

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April 12, 2011

Gastonia, NC – February 18, 2011 – CaroMont Health announced that it recently received the “Gold Star Standard Hospitals” designation from NC Prevention Partners. The award recognizes CaroMont’s high standard of excellence for tobacco cessation programs offered to their employees.

“CaroMont Health continues to shine and perform as one of the top hospitals in North Carolina. They are doing a great job in supporting their employees in quitting the use of tobacco,” commented Melva Fager Okun, Senior Manager with NC Prevention Partners. “I applaud their great effort.”

CaroMont Health has been tobacco-free since January 2007, and had already implemented many tobacco cessation programs for employees and the community. Beginning at pre-employment, employees are asked about their tobacco status and readiness to quit. Those interested in becoming tobacco-free are offered support, and referred to the NC Quitline and FreshStart classes offered by Cardiac Health & Fitness.

Also, employees who complete a Certification of Tobacco-Free Status for at least 12 months can receive an annual deposit to their health insurance incentive account.

Employees who use tobacco can enroll in and complete a quit program to become eligible for similar incentives after they quit successfully and remain tobacco-free for at least 6 months.  For those who prefer to quit on their own, CaroMont offers an intranet site, “Your Health Connection”, which offers information and links to trusted websites.

“Our goal is to meet our employees where they are to support them and their families in their health journey to stay ‘in love with life,’” said Sharon Heinrich, CaroMont Health’s Employee Wellness Coordinator. “This is one example of how we are meeting our mission of delivering exceptional healthcare to the communities we serve.”

About CaroMont Health –

CaroMont Health in Gastonia, North Carolina is a regional, independent, not-for-profit health care system and nationally-recognized “value-based” health care provider (high quality, low cost). CaroMont Health is the only hospital in the region named by Thomson

Reuters as a 100 Top Hospital for quality care and is one of two HealthGrades’ Clinical Excellence recipients in North Carolina. CaroMont Health is among an elite group of 19 selected participants (out of 3,000 national hospitals/systems) engaged in demonstrating “Accountable Care Organizations” (hospitals focused on accountability for highest outcomes at the lowest cost for individualized patient care). CaroMont is engaged in innovative Chronic Disease Management pilot projects in partnership with local and regional employers, is implementing innovative prevention and wellness focused on individual and population health, and has a unique national partnership with GE and Sg2 to reduce costs and create integrated and coordinated systems of care. CaroMont Health also is among a select few hospitals to be granted affiliation with Columbia HeartSource of New York—a clinical partnership that provides patient access to world-class clinical guidance and research trials. CaroMont was recently upgraded by S&P to an AA bond-rating category—based on key rating factors that include: exceptional quality and clinical outcomes, excellence in governance and management structure, comprehensive information technology infrastructure, engaged excellence and integrated medical staff, fiscal accountability, operating performance, strong financial position and low cost structure.

CaroMont Health System encompasses Gaston Memorial Hospital with 435 beds; Courtland Terrace, a 96-bed skilled nursing community; Gaston Hospice, which includes the inpatient 12-bed Robin Johnson House; and CaroMont Medical Group, an extensive network of physician practices in five counties and two states with nearly 200 employed physicians. The CaroMont Heart Center provides a full range of life-saving cardiac care, including open heart surgery. Additionally, the CaroMont Cancer Center provides advanced 3-D radiation treatment planning and chemotherapy. An expansive, surgical suite offers the latest advancements such as stereotactic technology, which utilizes computer simulation, microscopic surgery and x-ray images to achieve pinpoint accuracy. CaroMont also offers a level III neonatal intensive care unit for high risk infants and a pre-adolescent psychiatric center. CaroMont Health is proactively engaged in achieving its vision: To be a nationally-recognized leader and valued partner in promoting individual health and vibrant communities.

CaroMont Health employs 3,800 health care professionals, including a medical staff membership of 455. CaroMont Health is located at 2525 Court Drive in Gastonia, N.C. and can be reached at 704-834-2000. Additional information is available at www.caromont.org.

CaroMont Quality Awards

Blue Cross Blue Shield Blue Distinction Center for Cardiac Care

CIGNA highest quality rating for Patient Outcomes in Angioplasty, Cardiac

Catheterization, Colon Surgery, Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting, Craniotomy-Adult, Disc Surgery, Heart Attack, and Spinal Fusion

Top Performer status (3rd highest score among all participating U.S hospitals, and highest score of any NC hospital) in the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and Premier Healthcare Hospital Quality Incentive Demonstration project

Aetna – Recognized Institute of Quality Cardiac Care

Advanced Certification in Stroke Care from the Joint Commission

Advanced Certification in Diabetes Care from the Joint Commission

Hospital Value Index: Top 100 Best in Value Hospital

American Heart Association Heart Failure Gold Plus Performance Achievement Awards.

Certification in Hip and Knee Surgery from the Joint Commission

Commission on Cancer Outstanding Achievement Award from College of Surgeons

ACS MIDAS+ Platinum Quality Award Winner for Excellence in Clinical Performance

HealthGrades – 7 five-star designations in Back and Neck Surgery (spinal fusion), Heart Valve Replacement Surgery, Sepsis Care, Respiratory Failure Care, Pulmonary Care and Gastrointestinal Procedures & Surgeries. This includes an award for excellence in care of the Back and Neck Surgery Cleverley + Associates Five-Star Honor for high community value

Among only 6 percent of national hospitals to achieve Magnet recognition status for nursing excellence from the American Nurses Association

About NC Prevention Partners: NC Prevention Partners is a leader in reducing preventable illness and early death in North Carolina caused by tobacco use, poor nutrition, physical inactivity and obesity. NCPP has received national recognition for its WorkHealthy America SM program, which assists private and public employers to improve employee health and reduce healthcare and productivity costs.  In 2009 NCPP helped North Carolina’s acute care hospitals go 100 percent tobacco-free campus wide. Find out more at www.ncpreventionpartners.org.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:

Marion Crawford/Kelly Pearce

CaroMont Health

(704) 898-1548

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