Shore Behavioral Health Wins Award for Clinical Program Excellence

The UM Shore Regional Health Behavioral Health Services team has won a top award from Horizon Health, LLC. The award marked Behavioral Health’s selection as the most outstanding clinical program from five hospital behavioral health programs that were nominated in this category. The award was presented on February 21, 2017, at the Behavioral Health suite at UM Shore Medical Center at Dorchester.

Horizon Health specializes in helping hospitals better serve patients by establishing safe, effective and financially stable psychiatric programs, managed to the highest standards of accountability. At present, the organization serves approximately 90 hospitals that have inpatient behavioral health programs.

Photo: Shore Behavioral Health Award Presentation (l. to r.): Melissa Budzinski, vice president, Clinical Services, Horizon Health, LLC; Jack DeVaney, president, Horizon Health, LLC; Corlette Fezzia, vice president, Operations, Horizon Health, LLC; John Mistangelo, program administrator, Shore Behavioral Health; Jacki Crawford, nurse manager, Shore Behavioral Health; Ida Jane Baker, president, Dorchester General Hospital Foundation; Brian Leutner, executive director, UM Shore Medical Center at Dorchester, the Cancer Center and the Clark Comprehensive Breast Center; Eric Anderson, MD, medical director, Shore Behavioral Health; and Ken Kozel, president and CEO, UM SRH

Horizon Health representatives Corlette Fezzia, vice president, Operations, and Jack DeVaney, president, presented the award and spoke glowingly of the great progress made by Shore Behavioral Health in enhancing its clinical programs and in developing a full staff of quality practitioners to provide psychiatric care to the Mid-Shore population.

On hand to accept the award and celebrate the honor were Ken Kozel, UM SRH president and CEO, Ruth Ann Jones, senior vice president, Nursing and Patient Care Services, and several members of the Shore Behavioral Health team, including Eric Anderson, MD, medical director, John Mistrangelo, program administrator and Jackie Crawford, nurse manager, Ida Jane Baker, chairman of the Dorchester General Hospital Foundation also attended and accepted the check that accompanied the award, thanking Horizon Health and congratulating the SBH staff on their achievement in receiving the award.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

UM Shore Regional Health Publishes Community Benefits Report Online

The 2016 Community Health Improvement Report is now published and available for viewing on the UM Shore Regional Health website at http://umshoreregional.org/news-and-events/news/2017/um-shore-regional-2016-community-health-improvement-report.

The report, which describes highlights of the community health improvement programs and conducted by UM SRH, includes articles on four initiatives: the Ask the Expert series; the inauguration of Shore Behavioral Health’s Bridge Clinic; the Stepping On program offered by the Balance Center in partnership with Maintaining Active Citizens (MAC); and guided support programs (classes, screenings, support groups, etc.) that support better health management.

According to Ken Kozel, UM SRH president and CEO, “The value of our community benefits programs and services, including charity care, exceeds $32 million, but the value is stronger than money. It is building healthier communities and our steadfast commitment to helping our patients and their families enjoy their best health and quality of life.”

Bayside Elementary Student Recognized with Creating Healthier Communities Together Award

At the February meeting of its Board of Directors, University of Maryland Shore Regional Health presented its Creating Healthier Communities Together Award to Gregory Couch, an 11-year old 5th grader at Bayside Elementary School in Stevensville.

The award was established by UM Shore Regional Health to recognize residents of the organization’s five-county service area who participate in realizing its mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together. The award recognizes individuals or groups who have made an outstanding contribution to improve the health and well-being of the communities within Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties through efforts including: raising awareness about a chronic disease or health-related issue; participation in a community service project and/or health-related program or service that provides the region with greater access to health care services.

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Gregory Couch of Kent Island (center) receives the Creating Healthier Communities Together Award from Kenneth Kozel, president and CEO, UM Shore Regional Health (left) and John Dillon, chairman, UM Shore Regional Health Board of Directors (right).

Gregory, son of Paul and Kimberly Couch of Kent Island, was selected for the Creating Healthier Communities Together Award for his planning and execution of opening a chapter of Project Linus that covers Caroline, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties. Through his newly opened chapter, Gregory donated handmade blankets to UM Shore Regional Health’s Shore Emergency Center in Queenstown and Shore Medical Center in Chestertown for young children who come in to medical facilities under harsh circumstances and in need comfort.

“Team members of our Chestertown and Queenstown locations are so grateful for the hard work and effort Gregory puts into helping some of our youngest  community members through Project Linus,” says Mary Alice Vanhoy, manager of the UM Shore Emergency Center at Queenstown and the Emergency Department at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown. “We see many frightened children come through the doors of our emergency departments after unfortunate circumstances and these blankets offer a sense of comfort in times when they need it most.”

Project Linus is a non-profit organization represented by chapters covering all 50 states. Volunteers or “blanketeers” create blanket drives, make the blankets and then donate them to healthcare facilities. Gregory continues to collect and make blankets from various donations received through the community and plans to donate even more blankets to medical facilities in the counties his chapter covers.

“The leadership team and Board of Directors of University of Maryland Shore Regional Health were ecstatic to learn about the hard work and commitment Gregory has put behind advancing the wellbeing of patients and families at our medical facilities,” comments Ken Kozel, president and CEO, UM Shore Regional Health. “Gregory is a great example of how community partnerships can help Shore Regional Health continue to put patients first and achieve our mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.”

More information about Project Linus and volunteering with the mid-shore chapter may be obtained by visiting www.projectlinus.org, or calling Kimberly Couch at 410 924-2488.

About UM Shore Regional Health: As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,600 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers work with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

UM SRH Comprehensive Rehabilitation Team Member Receives Autism Specialist Certification

Diane LorsongDiane Lorsong, of Queen Anne’s County, was recently certified by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES) as a Certified Autism Specialist. Lorsong is a speech-language pathologist for University of Maryland Shore Regional Health Comprehensive Rehabilitation and currently sees patients at the UM Shore Medical Pavilion in Queenstown.

Lorsong completed the IBCCES Autism Competency exam along with meeting rigorous professional standards, demonstrating experience and education in autism. A Certified Autism Specialist has a minimum of a Master’s degree and 2 years of experience or a Bachelor’s degree and 10 years of experience. The Certified Autism Specialist obtains 14 continuing education hours in Autism every two years in order to stay up to date in the field.

“I love the variety and the different ways that I get to help people communicate,” says Lorsong. “I have a passion for working with those diagnosed with Autism; not every patient is the same and each one is a puzzle that requires me to think outside the box often.”

Prior to joining UM Shore Regional Health, Lorsong gained valuable experience working with children in a school setting focusing on developmental delays including Autism, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Stuttering, Apraxia, and articulation disorders.  Diane has been trained in picture exchange communication system (PECS) and is also fluent in American Sign Language (ASL).

As a speech-language pathologist, certified by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and licensed by the state of Maryland, Lorsong identifies, evaluates, and treats those with communication and related disorders.  She provides a customized treatment plan for a broad range of disorders including:  loss of speech and/or cognitive impairments due to stroke or brain injury, language comprehension, swallowing dysfunction and voice disorders.  In addition, Lorsong is certified in Deep Pharyngeal Neuromuscular Stimulation and Vital Stim Therapy as well as Lee Silverman Voice Therapy (LSVT), a program that was developed to help individuals diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.

About UM Shore Regional Health: As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,600 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers work with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

UM Shore Regional Health Announces Nominees for 2017 Nursing Awards

University of Maryland Shore Regional Health has announced the 56 nominations for the 2017 Nurse Excellence Awards program, set for May, 8, 2017 at the Rufus M. and Loraine Hall Todd Performing Arts Center at Chesapeake College.

According to Ruth Ann Jones, senior vice president, Patient Care Services and chief nursing officer for UM Shore Regional Health (UM SRH), the annual nursing awards ceremony, now in its sixth year, will as a kick-off event for the celebration of National Nursing Week, May 8-15, 2017. “The Nurse Excellence Awards recognize nursing excellence and serve as a great tribute to their hard work and commitment to our patients and to Shore Regional Health,” Jones said.

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2017 Nurse Excellence Awards Committee, L to R: Kathy Elliott, RN, Jackie Moriarty, Elizabeth Todd, RN (chair), Jean Volz, RN, Jamie Riley, RN, Jane Flowers, RN, Tara Smith, RN and Kathy Cvach, RN. Not shown are Eden Kinser, RN, Dawn Ford, RN and Bill Shertenlieb, RN.

There are six categories in the Nurse Excellence Awards program — five awards given to individual nurses and one to the nursing staff of a unit or department. Nominations are submitted through an online process that is open to all staff throughout UM SRH and managed by the Nurse Excellence Awards Committee.

Nurses nominated this year for the award, Commitment to Others, are: from Chestertown, Michael Parker, Kimberly Seward and Marjorie Shaffer; from Dorchester, Tonya Barker; and from Easton, Alyssa Baker, Robin Ford, Dannielle Fretterd, Dawn Ruby, Amy Saia, Emily Uyttewaal, Karen Van Trieste, Dorothy Waters and Taffie Wilson.

Professional Nursing Practice award nominees are: from Chestertown, Jeanette Mooday-Walsh; from Easton, Alyssa Baker, Renee Edsall and Gretchen Maans; and regional, Hope Honigsberg.

Nominated for the Leadership award in nursing are: from Chestertown, Rebecca King, Kellee McLean and Cindy Simmons; from Dorchester, Tammy Bradshaw; and from Easton, Kim Brice, Lisa Eisemann, Grace Gonzalez, Dawn Ruby, Melissa Smith, Vernon Usilton, Dorothy Waters and Jason Weaver.

An award for the most “Promising Professional” is new to the Nurse Excellence Awards this year. First-ever nominees for this honor are; from Chestertown, Sarah Postles; from Dorchester, Lashon Adams and April Ewing; and from Easton, Joseph Brun, Heather Downes, Ashley Higgs, Rebecca Lyons, and Kelsey Mills.

The 2017 nominees for the nurse excellence award in Mentorship/Advocacy are: from Chestertown, Debbie Fulton and Melanie Iacona; from Dorchester, Tonya Barker; from Easton, Dianne Baxter, Connie Collins, Dawn Ruby, Dyshekia Strawberry, Keri Tucker and April Venables; and regional, Madeline Steffens.

Several nursing inpatient units and outpatient services were nominated for the unit award for excellence in Empirical Outcomes, as follows: from Chestertown, Chester River Home Care and the Infusion Clinic at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown; from Easton, the Birthing Center, the Emergency Department, and the 2 East and 3 East units of UM Shore Medical Center at Easton; from Queenstown, the Ambulatory Surgery Center; and regional, the Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation program.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members, and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

Birthing Center Renovations in Progress

Renovations have begun at the Birthing Center at University of Maryland Shore Regional Health, located at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton.

We're ExpectingAccording to Luann Satchell, manager of Women’s and Children’s Services at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton, the plan is to renovate two patient rooms at a time as to minimize disruption to Birthing Center patients, visitors and staff. The entire project, which will encompass the Center’s triage rooms, inpatient rooms, nurses station and hallways, will take approximately three to four months to complete.

“Our team members, many of whom have been with us since the Birthing Center opened more than twenty-one years ago, are excited for the opportunity to provide the same patient-centered care, in a modernized environment,” comments Satchell. “We believe that once completed, the renovated patient care areas will greatly enhance the overall patient experience, for mother and baby.”

While the Easton hospital has been delivering the region’s newest residents for several decades, the Birthing Center officially opened its doors in January, 1996 and since then has been offering expectant mothers the LDRP model of care — an approach allowing women and their families to experience labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum care in one suite for the duration of their stay. According to Satchell, in an LDRP environment, physicians, nurses and necessary equipment come to mother and baby to maximize comfort and the overall patient experience.

Local Ob-Gyn provider and Birthing Center medical director, Aisha Siddiqui, MD, FACOG, adds, “As affiliates of University of Maryland Medical System, our Ob-Gyn and midwifery providers are able to provide expectant mothers with leading-edge prenatal care, from conception to labor, delivery and postpartum care. Together with our stellar clinical team at the Birthing Center, we work hard to ensure that moms and babies receive quality care during their stay at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton. We couldn’t be more thrilled that after renovation, the Birthing Center environment will be just as superb as the care we’ve always provided there.”

To learn more about the Birthing Center at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton or the educational opportunities and support groups available to expectant and new mothers, visit umshoreregional.org/birthing. Information about Dr. Siddiqui’s practice, UM Community Medical Group- Women’s Health (Ob-Gyn) can be obtained by calling 410-820-4888.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

UM Shore Health Moves Forward with Telehealth

A telehealth grant totaling $75,000 from the Maryland Health Care Commission (MHCC) has been awarded to University of Maryland Shore Regional Health (UM SRH). The grant supports projects designed to expand access to needed services and specialists in palliative care and psychiatry for patients and their families in Kent and Queen Anne’s counties. It is a collaboration between UM SRH, University of Maryland Medical System eHealth, and the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UM SOM) Department of Epidemiology and Public Health.

Telehealth utilizes telecommunications and related technologies such as video-conferencing, image capturing and use of remote examination tools to support health care services, patient and professional health-related education, public health and health administration. The expanded telehealth capability aims to reduce hospital emergency department visits, inpatient admissions and readmissions; to enable the early provision of appropriate treatment; to improve access to care; and to provide cost savings to patients and providers.

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William Huffner, MD

“We are grateful to the MHCC for supporting this initiative that will significantly enhance patient care in medically underserved communities in rural Maryland,” said Robert A. Chrencik, MBA, CPA, president and CEO, University of Maryland Medical System. “This grant will allow us to use the latest in technology to expand the reach of our clinical services and increase access for patients.”

MHCC’s telehealth grant project was launched this month and continues through July 2018. Funds awarded through the grant will assist UM SRH in the purchase of varied telehealth technologies, training for UM SRH clinicians and other users on the use of telehealth equipment, and support for UM SOM research professionals involved in the project.

“The MHCC grant enables UM Shore Regional Health to apply state-of-the-art telehealth technology to close difficult gaps in rural healthcare,” says William Huffner, MD, chief medical officer and senior vice president, Medical Affairs for UM SRH.

One significant gap in rural health care is caused by the nationwide shortage of skilled health care providers in key medical specialties. Palliative care and psychiatry are two arenas in which the scarcity of providers is a serious issue, especially in rural areas.

“We are very fortunate to have highly qualified physicians in both palliative care and psychiatry serving our patients through University of Maryland Community Medical Group,” Dr. Huffner notes. “However, the size of our region – five counties covering more than 1,700 square miles – makes it impossible to offer ongoing, on-site care at all locations at all times. The MHCC grant funding supports the expansion of our telehealth capabilities at UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown and the installation of telehealth technology at UM Shore Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, and will enable us to improve access to care for residents of Kent and Queen Anne’s counties.”

The grant funds, for which University of Maryland Shore Regional Health has agreed to provide a 2:1 financial match, also will support research on the most effective use of telehealth technology.

As Dr. Huffner explains, “Experience tells us that with any new technology, it is important to study how it is used in a way that will enable us to develop best practices. This grant will help us ensure that we make the best use of telehealth by addressing a number of questions, such as: What factors about a patient’s condition make the use of telehealth ideal or less than ideal? What are the boundaries of telehealth, in terms of patient tolerance and satisfaction? With regard to palliative care, one challenge we have sought to address is how to include not only patients but also key family members in palliative care discussions so that everyone understands the care options. Telehealth may prove very successful in achieving that goal by enabling the patient, the provider and family members, including those at varied remote locations, to participate in a three-way telehealth discussion.”

“Palliative care is a critical component of the care that we give to patients. The telehealth program is an innovative attempt to extend that care to more patients and families, over a wider area,” says University of Maryland School of Medicine Dean E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, who is also the vice president for Medical Affairs, University of Maryland, and the John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor. “We are fortunate to have this opportunity to further collaborate with our partners across the state to help improve the lives of underserved patients and their families.”

 

Easton Auxiliary Makes a $100,000 Donation

The Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton recently donated $100,000 to UM Memorial Hospital Foundation to support the Birthing Center at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton through proceeds raised by their thrift and consignment shop in Easton, The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street, Maggie’s Gift Shop and special event sales. The funds will support the renovation of the birthing center, which is now in progress.

“We very much appreciate the hard work the volunteers of the Easton Auxiliary put into raising money for our hospital”, says Luanne Satchell, nurse manager of the Women’s and Children’s Health Services at UM Shore Medical Center in Easton. “The funds donated by the Auxiliary are a pivotal part in helping us achieve our goal of providing the highest quality medical care in the region for new moms and their babies.”

Bazaar Check

Photo: (L to R): Elva Pierce, volunteer, co-head of the Bazaar; Janet Andrews, UM Memorial Hospital Foundation; Bob Frank, senior vice president of Operations for UM Shore Regional Health; Diane Bisanar, volunteer, co-head of the Bazaar; F. Graham Lee, vice president  for philanthropy, Art Cecil, president, Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton; Anne Davis, manager, The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street; Luanne Satchell, nurse manager, Women’s and Children’s Health Services at UM Shore Medical Center in Easton; and Celia Bodmer, head of Maggie’s Gift Shop.

The Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton works to raise funds for equipment, programs, services and patient care at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton, and various outpatient locations throughout UM Shore Regional Health, including the Clark Comprehensive Breast Center, the Cancer Center and various rehabilitation facilities.To support their fundraising efforts, the Auxiliary has two retail locations; The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street and Maggie’s Gift Shop, located inside the main entrance of UM Shore Medical Center at Easton.

The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street shop offers gently used designer and non-designer clothing for the entire family, shoes, fashion accessories and small household items. Maggie’s Gift Shop, managed and staffed exclusively by members of the Auxiliary, is located on the first floor of UM Shore Medical Center at Easton and offers a variety of unique gift items, jewelry, books, cards, holiday-themed decorations and snacks.

“We rely heavily on the sales of our two retail establishments to be able to give back and to help Shore Regional Health services and facilities,” says Art Cecil, president, Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton. “We encourage the community to come out and shop at The Bazaar and Maggie’s Gift Shop because not only are you buying for yourself, friends or family, but you are making a donation that will benefit healthcare in our community.”

Volunteers are currently being sought for both locations, and in other capacities throughout the Auxiliary. For more information, call 410-822-1000, extension 5839.

About UM Shore Regional Health: As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,600 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers work with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

UM Shore Medical Center Staff Honored as Every Day Heroes

Fanita Bartoo recently donated to the University of Maryland Memorial Hospital Foundation’s “Every Day Hero” Program to thank Christopher Watson, MD, Sharon Stagg, DNP, Mary Anne Luschinski, RN, CCRN, and Lisa Cook, RN for the excellent care they gave to her daughter when she was a patient in the ER, ICU, and Palliative Care.

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Pictured: (L to R) Lakshmi Vaidyanathan, MD, Jennifer Miles, BSN, RN, Manager 2E, Christopher Watson, MD, MPH, Sharon Stagg, DNP, MPH, CRNP, Ms. FanitaBartoo, Mary Anne Luschinski, RN, CCRN, Lisa Cook, RN, Diane Walbridge, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, Director of Acute Care and Emergency Services, Pamela Pardun, BSN, RN, CCRN, Manager ICU and Telemetry, F. Graham Lee, VP for Philanthropy.

The Everyday Hero program provides patients, visitors and staff members with the opportunity to recognize and thank any member or team at UM Shore Regional Health, who made a positive difference in a visit or stay, by making a financial contribution of any size to  the UM Memorial Hospital Foundation or the UM Chester River Health Foundation. Funds received through the Everyday Hero program are used for equipment, capital improvements and staff education for the departments in which the employees or team work.

About UM Shore Regional Health: As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,600 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers work with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.

Bazaar at 121 Federal Street to hold Bag Sale

The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street in Easton will hold a Bag Sale on Tuesday, January 31. Customers will be able to fill a bag with shop merchandise for either $6 or $10. Bags will be provided by the Bazaar and can be filled with previously discounted clothing (punched tickets). Certain merchandise exclusions do apply; please see a shop volunteer for details.

Operated by the Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton, which raises funds for University of Maryland Shore Medical Center at Easton, The Bazaar is open Monday through Saturday from 10am to 4pm.  For more information about The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street or volunteer opportunities call 410-822-2031. All sales conducted by the Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton are for the benefit of the hospital’s equipment, programs, services and patient care.

As part of the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS), University of Maryland Shore Regional Health is the principal provider of comprehensive health care services for more than 170,000 residents of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s and Talbot counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. UM Shore Regional Health’s team of more than 2,500 employees, medical staff, board members and volunteers works with various community partners to fulfill the organization’s mission of Creating Healthier Communities Together.