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Support of Global Medical Manufacturer Will Advance Women's Health Services in Navajo Nation

Fri, 03/09/2012 - 1:45am
The Associated Press

TUBA CITY, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Mar 9, 2012-- Tuba City Regional

Health Care announced that a new phase in a strategic partnership with

KARL STORZ, a global manufacturer of advanced medical equipment, will

begin with a ceremony at the hospital on Friday, March 9, 2012, to

mark the presentation of state-of-the-art endoscopic instrumentation

and related equipment for performing advanced gynecologic procedures

as well as addressing other women's health issues. The relationship

between the hospital and the family-owned company based in Germany is

focused on enabling the Arizona facility to acquire much-needed

equipment to enhance the care provided to its patients across a range

of medical specialties. This donation follows an initial gift of

advanced life-saving equipment made to the hospital late in 2011.

The donation project began last year with an outreach and meetings

that resulted in a relationship with Congressman Paul Gosar, a

first-term Congressman from Flagstaff, Arizona. A dentist by

profession, Congressman Gosar has a particular interest in initiatives

for reforming healthcare and expanding job opportunities in his

district. As a member of the Indian Affairs subcommittee, he is also

highly engaged in establishing greater sovereignty for Native

Americans. As such, he was instrumental in bringing the needs of Tuba

City Regional Health Care to the attention of KARL STORZ.

Jack A. Frydrych, Member, Global Executive Committee, KARL STORZ,

explained, "Recently, a decision was made by Dr. h. c. mult. Sybill

Storz to undertake a series of transformative projects of high impact

to meaningfully increase access to quality healthcare, while lowering

costs, in a Native American community that has a challenging

infrastructure (such as a large land mass, unimproved roads and

minimal public utility delivery), lack of significant sources of

revenue, has a hospital that is tribally run, and has the support and

encouragement of administration, medical staff, and tribal leadership

to collaboratively undertake and sustain programs to provide access to

advanced medical procedures as a center of excellence in Native

American communities, notwithstanding the revenue and infrastructure

challenges. Through the introduction of Congressmen Bill Cassidy, MD,

of Louisiana, an association developed with Congressman Paul Gosar and

his staff, who enthusiastically undertook the role and responsibility

of connecting us to Tuba City Regional Health Care and encouraged us

to evaluate it as the site for our project. We found that Tuba City

Regional Health Care and the Navajo/Hopi Nations met our criteria."

Initial onsite meetings helped in determining the most pressing needs

of the hospital and surgeons. Because of limited funding available,

Tuba City Regional Health Care is severely under-resourced, with

limited to no funding sources available to purchase much-needed

equipment. The hospital was overjoyed at the possibility of working

with KARL STORZ on a "true" partnership. The hospital's commitment to

the project has reinforced the interest of KARL STORZ in supporting

transformational change for the hospital and the Navajo Nation, and

not in merely donating a "piece of equipment."

According to Congressman Gosar, programs such as the one at Tuba City

Regional Health Care help demonstrate the progressive nature of

healthcare in the Navajo community and where it can lead. "I am proud

to have been a part of this unique partnership. The philanthropic

giving of KARL STORZ will empower Arizona native tribes to pursue

excellence in healthcare. The donations of KARL STORZ will impact the

day-to-day lives of many throughout the region, improving access and

the quality of care. I hope that this exceptional partnership

encourages other companies to consider how their investment can also

change the future of healthcare for communities in need. I thank all

who came together to be a part of this exceptional initiative," he

said.

The first equipment donation was a C-MAC(R) Video Intubation System

that has helped the hospital deal with difficult airway cases daily

and address concerns with patient safety issues.

The current stage of the partnership program now addresses the

hospital's strong commitment to developing its minimally invasive

surgical techniques in gynecology. The hospital's vision is to become

a regional center of excellence, providing advanced laparoscopic

surgery to women from all of the reservations in the Southwest. More

specifically, an additional aim of the hospital is to create a Women's

Health Center at Tuba City Regional Health Care that will function as

a center of knowledge and serve as a training site where surgeons can

improve their skills and master new techniques. The two current

gynecologic surgeons at Tuba City Regional Health Care are expert in

laparoscopic hysterectomies and laparoscopic surgery for pelvic organ

prolapse. By comparison, less than one-third of hysteroscopies in the

United States are performed minimally invasively.

The laparoscopic gynecology equipment being provided to the Tuba City

Regional Health Care includes small diameter operating hysteroscopes

and instrumentation, and other specialized telescopes and instrument

sets and equipment representing a range of innovative technologies for

performing minimally invasive procedures. Adult cystoscopy instruments

and telescopes are also being provided, as well as the company's Image

1(R) high-definition (HD) video technology that provides laparoscopic

video and images representing the highest imaging standards in the

medical field. The system also includes an AIDA HD Connect with

SmartScreen and peripheral equipment for copying, archiving, printing

and reviewing HD images and videos. This offers a critical capability

for the surgical staff at Tuba City Regional Health Care to support

education and training physicians in advanced surgical techniques.

"The majority of our patients live with extreme poverty, many times

with limited running water and electricity. The ability for them to

access high level healthcare without having to go hundreds of miles

for care is a major step forward. It's critical for their health and

welfare to have a first-class medical facility. We are grateful to

KARL STORZ for their commitment to women's health worldwide," said

Jennifer Whitehair, MD, FACOG, Department of OB/GYN, Tuba City

Regional Health Care.

The medical staff of Tuba City Regional Health Care is setting a high

standard for innovative medical care, an achievement that is

distinctive among the Indian nations. They are proving that, despite

hard living conditions and extreme poverty, a high level of advanced

medical care can be provided to the local communities.

This emphasizes a critical aspect of the project: that the advances

represented in the new procedures and new technologies available will

not only help patients on the Navajo lands, but will also provide

invaluable support for the training and education of other healthcare

providers outside of the Navajo Nation, such as at the University of

Arizona.

The donation program with Tuba City Regional Health Care is a

reflection of the social and ethical values that have long been an

integral part of the KARL STORZ business culture. A primary objective

has been to support worldwide training activities to enable doctors to

carry out minimally invasive interventions. "Beyond our core

competencies of being an innovation and quality leader in providing

endoscopic product solutions it is our tradition to actively support

medical training. With this effort, we especially focus on hospitals

and healthcare centers that need this support in order to advance the

usage of minimally invasive techniques for a better care and

well-being of patients. Therefore, we very much appreciate this

intensive dialog and exchange with the Tuba City Health Care

Corporation and we are glad that physicians and patients will benefit

from the endoscopic equipment of KARL STORZ," explained Dr. h. c.

mult. Sybill Storz, one of the owners and CEO of the KARL STORZ group.

Dr. Storz and the global KARL STORZ organization have supported

numerous humanitarian projects throughout the world. Each project was

aimed at improving medical care and training in underdeveloped

countries and in regions with less developed infrastructure.

Additionally, the Women's Health Initiative (WHI) of Dr. Storz has

sought to improve reproductive and maternal health for women and girls

in India. Considered a remarkably successful project since its launch

in 2005, the WHI has two major objectives: offering medical training

to local doctors in India, and creating this training to improve

access to gynecological treatment for women and girls, particularly in

India's remote regions. With ongoing support of Dr. Storz, projects

have been supported around the globe, from Afghanistan, Armenia,

Bolivia, Botswana, Cambodia and Gabon, to Ecuador, Jamaica, Kenya,

Nigeria and Vietnam, among many others.

Looking forward, the global KARL STORZ organization is continuing to

work collaboratively on future projects with the administration and

medical staff of Tuba City Regional Health Care, as well as the

leadership of the Navajo community.

ABOUT TUBA CITY REGIONAL HOSPITAL

Tuba City Regional Hospital is a 73-bed, regional acute care facility

with three operating rooms and one endoscopy room. The hospital

provides hundreds of clinical and patient care support services

spanning the medical spectrum, including total hip and joint

replacement surgery and emergency room trauma care. It serves a

geographic area of over 6,000 square miles in the western region of

the Navajo reservation and adjacent Hopi reservation for the more than

75,000 residents throughout this service area.

Tuba City Regional Hospital is the only place within the entire

reservation where total hip and joint replacements are performed by

board certified orthopedic surgeons. Tuba City Regional Hospital also

offers certified diabetic care, selective general surgery services and

specialty care services not typically found at other tribal hospitals.

Since September 2002, the Tuba City Regional Health Care Corporation

(TCRHCC), a private nonprofit tribal organization, has run the

hospital under a Self-Determination Contract in lieu of the Indian

Health Service. This status gives TCRHCC greater autonomy and

flexibility to pursue present and future opportunities beyond its

limited federal funding.

ABOUT KARL STORZ

KARL STORZ GmbH & Co. KG is a privately held family-owned business,

founded in 1945 by Dr. med. h. c. Karl Storz in Tuttlingen, Germany,

which remains the global headquarters. After the death of Dr. Karl

Storz in 1996, his daughter Dr. h. c. mult. Sybill Storz assumed

management as chief executive of the KARL STORZ group. The company

operates worldwide, with 46 subsidiaries in 38 countries, including

multiple research and development and manufacturing sites in Europe

and in the U.S., with more than 2,000 employees in its U.S.

subsidiaries. For more information, visit the company's Web site at

www.karlstorz.com.

CONTACT: Tuba City Regional Health Care Corporation

Community Relations, 928-283-2993

or

Brandy Tomhave, 410-908-8461

KEYWORD: UNITED STATES NORTH AMERICA ARIZONA

INDUSTRY KEYWORD: WOMEN SURGERY HEALTH HOSPITALS MEDICAL DEVICES OTHER HEALTH PHILANTHROPY OTHER PHILANTHROPY CONSUMER GENERAL HEALTH

SOURCE: Tuba City Regional Health Care

Copyright Business Wire 2012

PUB: 03/09/2012 06:00 AM/DISC: 03/09/2012 06:00 AM

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20120309005169/en

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