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West Penn Allegheny Health System Announces Recruitment of Leading Burn Specialists

PITTSBURGH, Jan. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Officials of the West Penn Allegheny Health System and The Western Pennsylvania Hospital announced today the recruitment of nationally recognized burn surgeons Larry M. Jones, MD, FACS, and Roger R. Barrette, MD, formerly of the UPMC-Mercy Trauma and Burn Center.

Drs. Jones and Barrette will direct the West Penn Burn Center, one of the country's preeminent programs for the treatment of burn injuries. West Penn is the region's only burn center verified by the American Burn Association and American College of Surgeons and the only center in the state to earn that verification four times.

West Penn's long tradition of excellence and compassion in burn care attracted them to the West Penn Burn Center, Dr. Jones and Dr. Barrette said.

"We are proud to welcome these distinguished physicians and look forward to working with them as they continue West Penn Burn Center's long record of outstanding care," said Dawn M. Gideon, President and Chief Executive Officer, West Penn Hospital.

Dr. Jones will serve as Medical Director of West Penn Burn Center. Current West Penn burn surgeon Ariel Aballay will remain as a key part of the center's team.

Established in 1969, West Penn Burn Center treats more than 500 inpatients and approximately 1,500 outpatients each year. The Burn Center is fully equipped with state-of-the-art medical systems, special equipment for treating burns, 14 private rooms including six critical care rooms, a family waiting room and children's playroom.

"We are very happy to join the West Penn Burn Center and to continue its outstanding work in caring for burn patients," Dr. Jones said.

Every admitted patient has a Burn Center team dedicated to meeting individualized needs including specialized medical care, emotional and psychological counseling, nutrition planning and physical therapy.

In addition to the medical staff, other key members of the team include Nurse Manager Esther Atwood, MSN, RN, NE-BC, Outreach Coordinator Sandy Smith, BSN, RN-BC, and Director of Critical Care Nursing Pat Zebracki, RN, MSN, NEA-BC.

Drs. Jones and Barrette bring a combined 60 years of experience in surgery, burn care and trauma care to West Penn. Dr. Jones led the Trauma Services and Burn Center at UPMC Mercy since 1991. A graduate of Indiana University, Bloomington, and its School of Medicine, Dr. Jones served his internship and residency at Miami Valley Hospital, Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, and was subsequently named Coordinator of Trauma Service at Miami Valley. He joined the staff of Mercy Hospital of Pittsburgh in 1987. He is board-certified by the American Board of Surgery.

He has published on a wide variety of topics including the use of donated skin in burn healing, wound closure and blunt trauma injuries, and made numerous presentations on burn trauma management.

Dr. Barrette is board-certified in surgery and graduated from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine. He combines his years of experience in surgery, trauma care and critical care with an extensive record of research and publications on burns, trauma and critical care. He joined Mercy Hospital of Pittsburgh in 1987, and at UPMC-Mercy he served as director of the progressive care units in neurosurgery/trauma and oncology/surgery as well as the Intensive Care Unit.

He served an internship and residency in general surgery and a fellowship in trauma/critical care medicine at the University of Cincinnati, as well as a general surgery residency at Allentown Affiliated Hospitals.

West Penn Burn Center also announced today that it has received an $87,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to open a new Outpatient Burn Center. The new facility is expected to open in the first quarter of 2009 adjacent to the Burn Center on the hospital's second floor of West Penn Hospital, and will complement and extend the Burn Center's capabilities.

"We are grateful to U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter and U.S. Sen. Bob Casey Jr. for their work in securing this grant," Ms. Gideon said.

The new outpatient center will provide follow-up care to patients with serious burns to minor burns, serving all patient populations from infant to adult.

It will include a large waiting area, four exam rooms and a designated area for compression garment fitting and physical and occupational therapy. The center will be staffed with physicians, nurses and support staff who offer years of experience and can provide a continuum of care.

"We have long wanted to offer a full continuum of care to burn patients, providing care for our patients throughout their healing processes," said Dr. Aballay. "The creation of the new outpatient center is a dream come true for all of us at the Burn Center."

The Western Pennsylvania Hospital is an academic medical center with two hospital campuses that serve Pittsburgh and the surrounding five-state area: The Western Pennsylvania Hospital in Pittsburgh and The Western Pennsylvania Hospital -- Forbes Regional Campus in Monroeville.

The Western Pennsylvania Hospital in Pittsburgh is the first hospital in Pittsburgh and western Pennsylvania to be awarded Magnet recognition status by the American Nurses Credentialing Center in 2006. This prestigious 4-year designation recognizes excellence in nursing.

Part of West Penn Allegheny Health System, West Penn Hospital is a leader in patient care, education, and research, and serves as the clinical campus for Temple University School of Medicine.

SOURCE West Penn Hospital
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