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Life & Health. News and information to advance your health and well-being.
Life & Health - January 2012 |
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Award - Winning Care at Mount Nittany

Mount Nittany Medical Center is a recipient of the Joint Replacement Excellence Award™ for the 4th consecutive year, ranking them among the top 5 percent in the nation.

HealthGrades®, the nation's leading, most trusted, independent source of physician information and hospital quality ratings, recently designated Mount Nittany Medical Center a recipient of the Orthopedic Surgery Excellence Award™ and Spine Surgery Excellence Award™, ranking them in the top 10 percent in the nation. In addition, the Medical Center was ranked among America's 100 Best Specialty Care for Joint Replacement Surgery and Spine Surgery.

A HealthGrades report found that patients treated at 5-star rated hospitals experience a 73 percent lower risk of mortality and a 63 percent lower risk of complications compared to 1-star rated hospitals."Choosing a hospital can be a life or death decision. With our commitment to providing top-quality care, Mount Nittany ensures our physicians and staff members are informed in research and development in their specialty," said Linda Kuhlman, RN, MSN, vice president of professional and clinical services.

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Mount Nittany's HealthGrades “Report Card” is Impressive

HealthGrades® also honored Mount Nittany with the following for 2012:

  • Ranked Among the Top 5% in the Nation for Joint Replacement for 4 Years in a Row
  • Ranked Among the Top 10% in the Nation for Overall Orthopedic Services for 4 Years in a Row
  • Ranked Among the Top 10% in the Nation for Spine Surgery for 3 Years in a Row
  • Ranked Among the Top 10 in PA for Overall Orthopedic Services for 7 Years in a Row
  • Ranked Among the Top 5 in PA for Joint Replacement for 4 Years in a Row
  • Ranked Among the Top 5 in PA for Spine Surgery for 5 Years in a Row
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Mount Nittany Welcomes New Year's Baby
Heather Eagle, RN, labor and delivery, presents mom and son with a basketful of goodies, including teddy bears, clothing and other items donated by local businesses.

Mount Nittany Medical Center's first baby of 2012 arrived on Jan. 1 at 12:58 pm. Suzanne Houck gave birth to her son, Carson Nash Houck, weighing 6 lbs. 2 ½ oz. and 19 inches long.

Carson was an early birthday present for his mom, who celebrated her 21st birthday on the 5th. Asked what she thinks about her son sharing his birthday with a holiday, she said, "It's an awesome thing to look forward to every year!" Since the baby's due date was Jan. 10th, the arrival was especially surprising.

Mount Nittany presented a Welcome New Year's Baby basket to the new mother and baby with gifts donated by Bon Ton, Heidi Lynne Photography, Anatomy Naturals, Baby Goin' Places, Surface Artist Cooperative, and the Café and Gift Shop at the Medical Center.


It’s Here!.....da Vinci “Robot” to Launch in the New Year for Gynecology and Urology
From left to right: Shelly Rhine, RN, and Michelle Fanning-Hursh, RN, CNOR, RNFA.

The da Vinci Surgical System has arrived at Mount Nittany Medical Center in Central Pennsylvania--the only system of its' kind within a fifty-mile radius.

Da Vinci enables surgeons to perform delicate and complex operations through a few tiny incisions with increased vision, precision, dexterity and control. There are several key components, including: an ergonomically designed console where the surgeon sits while operating, a patient-side cart where the patient lays during surgery, four interactive robotic arms, a high-definition 3D vision system, and proprietary EndoWrist® instruments.

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Emergency Department helps Provide a “Safe Landing” for Traveler's Homecoming
Julie Walkup

Julie Walkup of Huntingdon had been working with her doctor to help regulate her blood pressure over the past several months. Although she knew it was still an issue, this did not deter her from taking a trip to California to celebrate her sister's birthday. While flying back to central Pennsylvania, she experienced chest pain, but decided to keep this to herself until the plane landed at University Airport in State College.

Once off the plane, she asked her friend to take her directly to the emergency department at Mount Nittany Medical Center. "In retrospect, I should have sought treatment when the chest pain started but I just wanted to be at home. The adjustment of the cabin pressure probably worsened my condition. I was very grateful that I made it to State College and then to the hospital in time," said Julie.

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2010 - 2011 Annual Report for Mount Nittany Health System

Mount Nittany's commitment to sound financial practices and investment in the future means we're better equipped to serve our community with excellent, expanding healthcare. Some of the highlights of our most recent fiscal year include:

  • Strong, positive operating margin
  • Standards & Poor and Fitch Bond Rating: A-, Outlook: Stable
  • Contributed more than $4 million in care annually to the community

View the 2010 - 2011 Annual Report


Dr. Ko Joins Mount Nittany Physician Group’s Rheumatology Practice

Mount Nittany Physician Group is pleased to announce the addition of rheumatologist Judy Ko, MD, to its staff.

Dr. Ko is a graduate of Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, and has a Master's degree in public health from George Washington University, Washington, D.C. She completed her residency at UMPC - Mercy and her fellowship at St. Louis University School of Medicine. Board-certified in both rheumatology and internal medicine, Dr. Ko previously practiced at LIFE Pittsburgh.

As a rheumatologist, Dr. Ko will provide patients with diagnosis and treatment of a variety of bone, joint and muscle diseases. Mount Nittany offers a range of rheumatology services, including joint injections, orthopedic devices and synovial fluid analysis.

Dr. Ko will provide services at Mount Nittany Physician Group's Park Avenue practice, which is located at 1850 East Park Avenue, Suite 201, in State College.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ko, please call 814.234.8800, or visit for more information on the rheumatology services at Mount Nittany.


Mount Nittany Physician Group’s Ob-gyn has Ultrasound AIUM Accreditation

In order to receive accreditation by the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine (AIUM), a practice must undergo a voluntary yet meticulous application process. Receiving this accreditation indicates clinical excellence and dedication to providing the very best in patient care.

Mount Nittany Physician Group's Obstetrics and Gynecology department received AIUM accreditation for their ultrasound services. The department accepts all physicians' orders and is prepared to accommodate increased volume.

For more information on what is offered, please call 814.237.3470, or visit


Stay Fit through Winter Activities Available in the Area

The beautiful Nittany Valley has a multitude of winter activities within a 25-mile radius. Here are a few:

  • Skiing and snowboarding: With beginner, intermediate and advanced hills, all skiers and snowboarders can ride the slopes of Tussey Mountain in State College, Pa. Classes are offered for all ages and levels of experience. For more information, call 800.732.2754 or visit
  • Ice skating: Enjoy the fresh air by ice skating outdoors at Black Moshannon State Park, located in Philipsburg, Pa. To learn about ice skating and the additional winter activities at Black Moshannon, visit
  • Sledding: Zip down the hills on your sled at Slab Cabin Park in State College, Pa. For the dates and times you can sled, go to
  • Ice fishing: Try ice fishing on 630 acres of lake at Bald Eagle State Park, located in Howard, Pa. Learn more at

Family Medicine Seminar Series Explores Current Topics

The Family Medicine Seminar Series at Mount Nittany Medical Center, in collaboration with Penn State College of Medicine, is held monthly in the Galen and Nancy Dreibelbis Auditorium, Entrance D of the Medical Center on 1800 E. Park Ave., State College. The series is geared toward a broad audience, including community members, students, local and regional family physicians, pediatricians, internists, nurses and other health care professionals. However, both continuing medical education (CME) credit for physicians and continuing nurse education (CNE) credit are offered.

A buffet dinner is served at 6:00 pm for a nominal fee. The education event starts at 6:30 pm. Use entrance D at the rear of the Medical Center.

Spring Line-up for Family Medicine Seminar Series

  • Feb. 16: Invisible Wounds of War: Meeting the Psychological Health Needs for Returning Warriors
  • Mar. 15: A New Era for Primary Care of Back and Neck Pain
  • Apr. 19: Calorie Restriction and Health
  • May 17: Child Sexual Abuse

To register, call Jessica Bird at 814.234.6738 or email her at


3WZ's Mount Nittany Medical Minute
Mount Nittany Health System has a radio segment, Mount Nittany Medical Minute, which airs on 95.3 FM 3WZ. Mount Nittany Medical Minute features helpful information given by health care professionals from Mount Nittany who specialize in the topics discussed. Visit to browse through Medical Minute segments, and be sure to check back for more clips as they air on 3WZ.

Southern Grilled Chicken Salad with Sweet Potato Fries and Honey Peach Vinaigrette

This delicious, healthy recipe is from our certified executive chef, Gary Glenn, director of nutrition and culinary services.

Southern Grilled Chicken Salad Recipe

To see more of Gary Glenn's recipes, visit

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