Dreaming of a Clean Colon

Kristin Farley raises an additional $850 for Littauer newborns

Gloversville High School student Kristen Farley, right, presents a check to Littauer VP Marketing, Communications, & Public Relations, Cheryl McGrattan for $850. The funds were raised to support the Littauer Birthing Center Baby Box program.

Gloversville High School student Kristin Farley, right, presents a check to Littauer VP Marketing, Communications, & Public Relations, Cheryl McGrattan for $850. The funds were raised to support the Littauer Birthing Center Baby Box program.

GLOVERSVILLE, NEW YORK (Dec. 20, 2017) – Gloversville High School sophomore Kristin Farley of Gloversville presented a check to Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home totaling $850 on Dec. 20 in the hospital lobby The check was presented to Littauer VP, Marketing, Communications, & Public Relations, Cheryl McGrattan. Farley coordinated a spaghetti and meatball fundraiser at Gloversville’s Plaza Italian Bistro, held on Dec. 6, to benefit the Littauer Baby Box Program.

“We are honored to be the beneficiary of Kristin’s talent,” said McGrattan. “Her efforts directly impact new families in our region.”

Throughout 2017, Farley has worked closely with the Littauer Birthing Center. The industrious young woman set her sights on raising money for the Littauer Baby Box Program and excelled in the process. In August, Kristin raised $1,250. Together with her latest effort, she has raised $2100 for the Baby Box Program at Littauer.

Kristin’s hard work and determination is greatly appreciated by Littauer and well received by local families.

Wellness Words December 2017

HealthLink Littauer’sAlicia DeRuscio-Head


Submitted by Alicia DeRuscio, B.S.

Community Education Assistant

Winter Safety

The winter months are upon us, bringing storms and cold temperatures that can be hazardous for all. It’s important that we prepare our homes, our vehicles, and ourselves to brace the cold and remain healthy and safe this winter.

Home Safety

While some people enjoy the chillier weather, many of us choose to remain inside during the winter months. In order to keep our homes safe, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends properly winterizing our homes prior to the cold weather:

  1. Make sure your home is insulated to prevent heat loss.
  2. Check heating systems, fire places, and chimneys to ensure they are clean and working correctly.
  3. Have an alternate heat source prepared and fuel available for use in the event that your main source of heat doesn’t work.
  4. Clean gutters and make any necessary roof repairs to protect against snow, sleet, and ice.
  5. For emergency purposes, keep a smoke detector, carbon monoxide detector, and extra batteries for each device within your home.

Vehicle Safety

Preparing our vehicles is another important step to remain safe throughout the winter. Weather conditions can often affect travel, so if you are planning to drive, be aware of the current travel conditions on the roads as well as future weather forecasts.  Slow down when driving and keep a few car lengths between yourself and other drivers to help prevent accidents.

According to the CDC, you should service the radiator on your vehicle, monitor antifreeze levels, and check the tread on your tires prior to winter weather. Make it a habit to keep a full tank of gas and avoid letting your gas levels fall too low.  If help is needed, take your vehicle to a local mechanic to assist with this process.

In case of an emergency, prepare an emergency winter travel kit to keep in your vehicle. Include items such as:

  • Cell phone
  • Cell phone charger
  • Batteries
  • Flashlight
  • First aid kit
  • Water
  • Non-perishable food items
  • Tire pump
  • Bag of sand
  • Radio
  • A change of clothes
  • A blanket or extra coat

Outdoor Safety

The winter months can be a fun and exciting time to enjoy the outdoors, as well. It can also be a time for outdoor work, shoveling and snow removal.  If you are planning to go outside, dress appropriately for the weather in warm, dry clothing.

The CDC recommends wearing hats, scarves, and mittens to cover the body as much as possible, as well as water resistant coats, pants, and boots. Three layers of clothing should be worn to protect against the cold, including an inner layer to hold body heat, an insulation layer to help retain body heat, and an outer layer to fight the wind, rain, and snow.  If you start to sweat, remove layers as needed; sweating can increase the amount of heat lost from the body.

If you are performing outdoor chores, avoid overexerting yourself by working slowly. Be sure to pay attention to your body – if you need a rest, are cold or start to shiver, take a break or go inside and warm up.

The winter season come once a year, every year. With a little bit of planning and preparation, you can be ready to conquer whatever Mother Nature brings your way this winter!

If you would like to learn more about winter safety, visit cdc.gov or call HealthLink Littauer at 518-736-1120. You can e-mail us at healthlink@nlh.org, see our website at nlh.org, or visit our new wellness center at 2 Colonial Court in downtown Johnstown, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.  We’re your community health & wellness service of Nathan Littauer Hospital and Nursing Home.

Meet Performance Improvement Specialist, Wes McFee

Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home Performance Improvement Specialist, Wes McFee

Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home Performance Improvement Specialist, Wes McFee

GLOVERSVILLE, NEW YORK (November 30, 2017) – Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home Performance Improvement Specialist, Wes McFee, has brought his skill set to Littauer.

Performance improvement specialists are employed primarily in the healthcare field to improve patient care in a variety of ways. At Littauer, McFee serves as a consultant to staff and administration, evaluating, planning, and implementing improvements in healthcare. Other aspects of his job include team building and group facilitation, compiling and tracking data, and preparing training materials.

In has set up a task force to address sepsis and to lead the nation in sepsis education. McFee is working as the project lead for sepsis education at Littauer. Sepsis is the result of a massive immune response to bacterial infection that gets into the blood. It often leads to organ failure or injury

It is McFee’s goal to bring awareness and education to the forefront of all Littauer staff. He also works closely with individual departments supplying them with information and tools to improve patient outcomes.

McFee works closely with Littauer’s Vice President, Medical Affairs & Chief Medical Officer Dr. Frederick Goldberg.

“In the brief time that Wes has been working here, he has been quick to add value by using his strong problem-solving, analytical, communication and teamwork skills. We are delighted to have him on our team,” said Goldberg.

“As a numbers guy, using data and statistics for practical insight is what I enjoy, and I’m right at home at Littauer’s Performance Improvement department,” adds McFee. “My background is largely in project management and I’m fortunate to share that with my colleagues, as well.”

Interestingly, June 2017 was not McFee’s first interaction with Littauer. In 2000, while at Littauer, he was diagnosed with a severe mitral valve prolapse at age 33. Mitral valve prolapse is a condition in which the two valve flaps of the heart do not close smoothly or evenly, but instead bulge (prolapse) upward into the left atrium.

Dr. Michael Holmes of Schenectady Cardiology Associates gave McFee a prognosis of two weeks during surgical consult. McFee claims he would not be alive today without the condition being correctly diagnosed at Littauer.

McFee had open-heart surgery immediately thereafter, was found to have an extremely rare bleeding disorder known as Glanzmann’s Thrombasthenia, which caused post-op complications while at Albany Medical Center. He was later seen at Johns Hopkins University Hospital by Dr. Harry Dietz, the world’s leading expert in connective tissue disorders and after whom Loeys-Dietz Disorder is named. McFee was soon diagnosed with a connective tissue disorder not yet identified by medical science, and his DNA remains as a research specimen at Hopkins.

Fast-forward to 2017, McFee together with his wife Tabatha, a Special Education Teacher at Mayfield Elementary School, Co-Advisor of Mayfield Elementary School Running Club, created a 12-person team of locals to run the Reebok Ragnar Adirondacks Relay Race where each runner completed three different legs of the 196.2 mile course through the Adirondack Mountains over two days and one night; each runner totaled 11-24 miles during the event depending on which legs they ran.

Open-heart surgery survivor Wes McFee was the Team Captain of the team appropriately named “Heart & Sole,” who finished with flying colors and an amazing sense of accomplishment.

“Littauer was thrilled for Wes when he was able to compete in Ragnar” said Littauer VP of Marketing/Communications Cheryl McGrattan. “We were stunned when he finished so strongly. Undoubtedly his professional and personal experience will benefit our patients.”

Littauer welcomes the education and experience McFee brings to this community hospital.

ALBANY BU. REVIEW: “Littauer has run in the black each of the past 16 years”

Here’s a story from our media partner, the Albany Business Review:

Five questions with Laurence Kelly, president and CEO of Nathan Littauer Hospital


SUBSCRIBER CONTENT: Nov 10, 2017, 6:00am EST

PHILIP SCALIA Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home CEO Laurence E. Kelly

Nathan Littauer Hospital & Nursing Home CEO Laurence E. Kelly

In an industry where the big players keep getting bigger, Laurence Kelly says he’s happy with where his hospital is.

Nathan Littauer Hospital in Gloversville has been in the black each of the past 16 years. That financial footing lets the hospital make decisions that allow doctors to provide better care, even if it may not help the bottom line.

Kelly, president and CEO of the hospital, compares it to baseball players Dustin Pedroia or Jose Altuve who are both small in stature but have been among the best players in the league.

They were supposed to be too small to be successful, but they surprised people, Kelly says.

Have you been approached about affiliations or mergers with other larger hospitals? You know, everybody wants us. We’ve been in the black 16 years in a row. I don’t think there’s another hospital that can say that. We think there’s no reason we can’t stay independent, and what I tell people who ask me is, “When things change here, we’ll call you.”

Patient days declined for hospitals on The List again this year, while outpatient visits were up. What do you see as the driving forces behind that? It’s been going on for a long time. Inpatient revenue is about 20 percent of our total revenue. Look at the average hospital, and it’s closer to 40 percent, and those hospitals aren’t doing as well.

Did the Affordable Care Act play a role in that? It could have accelerated it a little bit, but it’s hard to track it. We opened a primary care center in Fonda this year. It hasn’t had health care in years. One patient told us he thought there’d been a doctor there in the ‘80s. Since August, we’ve been getting one or two new patients a day, some who are seeing a doctor for the first time. That was a goal of the ACA, to visit doctors before things get bad and you end up in the ER or get admitted.

Health care is a fast-growing sector for hiring. Is it difficult to get people to come to Gloversville? We had Sen. Chuck Schumer here a few weeks ago and he was blown away when I told him we have employees here from 20 different countries. It’s like a mini-United Nations, and we’re proud of that. There are some niche jobs that are difficult to fill, but we have been able to recruit who we need.

What’s next for the hospital? We’ve got a bunch of things up our sleeve. One thing we’re seeing are the CVS’s, the Rite Aids, the Price Choppers, drug stores building a little corner for telemedicine. In the next year or two, there’s going to a proliferation of alternatives for going to the doctor’s office for simple things. Any health care organization not doing that now better figure out how to do that.