Shore Kids Camp for Children with Type 2 Diabetes

Enrollment is now open for Shore Kids Camp, a four-day camp experience for children (ages 8-13) with diabetes that takes place July 17-21, 2017 at MEBA Engineering School on Route 33 (the Oxford Road) in Easton.

Provided by University of Maryland Shore Regional Health, Shore Kids Camp helps children with diabetes learn more about their disease and how to manage it in a safe and healthy environment while enjoying many activities, including bowling, boat rides, and visits to organic farms and area museums. The camp is managed by pediatric nurses with experience in diabetes who are assisted by high school and college students as volunteers. It also receives support from varied community groups, including local Lions Clubs, Rotary Clubs, and the Talbot County Public Schools field hockey teams.

“There is no other activity like this on the Eastern Shore,” says Wynne Aroom, patient education specialist, UM Shore Regional Health. “The diabetes camps across the Bay Bridge are overnight camps — many parents are reluctant to send their young children that far away while others find the cost of ‘sleep-away’ camp prohibitive.

The educational aspect of the camp experience includes guest speakers from the hospital and community such as dietitians, other diabetes educators, nurses with diabetes, podiatrists, dental hygienists and ophthalmologists. The children also play various learning games. Says Aroom, “These activities help boost the children’s confidence that they can survive without their parents. In many cases, they are the only child in their school class with diabetes, which is very challenging for them. At Shore Kids Camp, there is a lot of sharing and learning from each other, so they feel less alone in the challenges they face daily,” she adds.

Aroom also notes that Shore Kids Camp helps parents by providing needed respite from round-the-clock vigilance and the confidence that their child is having fun in a safe environment, as well as the opportunity to meet and talk with other families coping with Type 2 diabetes.

The camp fee is $75 per child and the registration deadline is July 7, 2017. For further details, contact Wynne Aroom, 410-822-1000, ext. 5286, or

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.

New Physician Assistant Rotations in Progress at UM Shore Regional Health

UM Shore Regional Health has welcomed five physician assistant students for clinical rotations with UM SRH physician preceptors, William Huffner, MD, senior vice president, Medical Affairs and chief medical officer, has announced.

The students — Rhavi Dholokia, Emmy Estrada, Chidex Eugene-Francis, Kulvinder Singh and Emily Tull — began their first of eight, five-week rotations on May 22, 2017. The physician preceptors and their specialties are: Eric Anderson, MD, Psychiatry; Walter Atha, MD, Emergency Medicine; Kim Herman, MD, Family Medicine; Mark Langfitt, MD, Pediatrics; Andrew Pelczar, MD, Surgery; Aisha Siddiqui, MD, OB/GYN; Myron Szczukowski, Jr., MD, Orthopedics (offered as an elective); and Elena Tilly, MD, Internal Medicine.

UM SRH has welcomed five physician assistant students for nine-month clinical rotations. Shown are (back row, L-R): Emily Tull, Chidex Eugene-Francis, Ravi Dholokia, Kulvinder Singh and Emmy Estrada; and (front row, L-R) William Huffner, MD, UM SRH chief medical officer and senior vice president, Medical Affairs, Kim Billingslea, regional director, Medical Staff Services, and Jennifer Kaminskas, executive assistant, Medical Affairs.

“We are delighted to host this second group of students from the Physician Assistant program offered jointly by Anne Arundel Community College and University of Maryland at Baltimore,” says Huffner. “According to reports from our physician preceptors and from the seven PA students who were with us during the past year, the first round of rotations was highly successful. In fact, a few of those students, who graduated in May, have indicated that UM Shore Regional Health is their first choice for employment once they pass their PA licensing exams. We could not have asked for a better outcome and we are hoping this new group will have an equally good experience with our physicians and their practices, and in our hospitals and outpatient services.”

Mary Jo Bondy, administrative program director of the M.S. in Health Science/Physician Assistant Porgram, shares Dr. Huffner’s enthusiasm. “We are so very grateful to the physicians and hospital leaders at Shore who have welcomed our PA students,” Bondy says. “The first group of students, who are now graduates studying for state licensure, greatly appreciated the opportunity to become embedded in the local community and to work with one physician practice at a time, which enabled them to really focus on their learning. I also was very glad to hear from some of the physician preceptors how much growth they observed in the students over the course of the rotations.”

According to Bondy, most of the students accepted into the AACC/UMB PA program have some work experience, very often in the field of health care. “We find that candidates with a bit of work history and life experience are most likely to succeed in the program, which is very demanding,” she says.

The demand for certified physician assistants continues to grow, especially in rural communities. PAs work in virtually every area of medicine and surgery in the full array of health care settings — hospitals, private and employed physician practices, outpatient services, and long-term care and rehabilitation facilities. PA duties include taking histories and conducting physical examinations, ordering and interpreting tests, diagnosing illnesses, developing and implementing treatment plans, and assisting in or even performing surgery.

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.

Easton Auxiliary Hosts Annual Membership Luncheon, Announces New Officers

The Auxiliary of Memorial Hospital at Easton recently announced its officers for 2017-2018 at their annual membership luncheon held at the Milestone in Eaton.

Pictured are (from left to right).  The Auxiliary supports programs and services at University of Maryland Shore Medical Center at Easton and at University of Maryland Shore Regional Health offsite locations including the Cancer Center.  Funds are raised by the Auxiliary primarily through retail sales at Maggie’s Gift Shop, located at UM Shore Medical Center at Easton, at The Bazaar at 121 Federal Street.  For additional Information about volunteer opportunities with the Auxiliary, call 410-822-1000, ext. 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.

Local Neurosurgery Team Offers Presentation on Mission Trip to Jordan

“Neurosurgery and Hope – The Mission for Syrian Refugees” is the topic of a special, free presentation by local neurosurgeon Khalid Kurtom, MD, and his operating room team, set for Thursday, June 29 at 7 p.m. in the Todd Performing Arts Center at Chesapeake College.

Khalid Kurtom, MD, third from left, is shown with members of his surgical team (l. to r.) Robert Brault, Suzette Jones, Wendy Towers and Steve Lykudis (in gray), and two members of the Istishari Hospital medical staff.

Kurtom, a neurosurgeon with University of Maryland Community Medical Group – Neurosurgery in Easton, and his four team members will discuss their recent trip to Amman, Jordan to perform complex, minimally invasive brain and spine surgeries on Syrian refugees who had fled war-torn Syria to live in refugee camps in Jordan. Organized by Kurtom and the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS), the mission was funded by SAMS, University of Maryland Medical System and many private donations. While at the Istishari Hospital in Amman, the team performed 22 life-changing surgeries on patients who were suffering from a range of debilitating conditions, including bullet wounds and other injuries related to the conflict in Syria, advanced and untreated spinal disease, and previous unsuccessful surgeries.

In addition to Kurtom, surgical nurses Wendy Towers and Suzette Jones, surgical technologist Robert Brault and surgical equipment specialist Steve Lykudis will be on hand to assist in the presentation and answer questions from those in attendance.

For more information or to RSVP for this event, contact Cindy Yost, 410-820-9117, ext. 4144 or

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.

Quality Health Foundation Awards $380K in Grants throughout Maryland and the District of Columbia

Quality Health Foundation (QHF) has announced this year’s grant awards totaling $380,000 in Maryland and Washington, D.C.that support local healthcare-related quality improvement efforts.

Of the 67 applications, 15 organizations received grants. “The Board received many diverse and deserving applications this year,” said Dr. Molly Burgoyne, QHF Board of Directors Chair. “It’s reassuring to know there are so many organizations with programs designed to improve the health of our most vulnerable populations. Ultimately, we chose a stellar group of programs covering a wide geographic area with diverse health concerns.  Dr. Catherine Smoot-Haselnus, Board chair of Quality Health Strategies, the parent company of QHF, added “The work these organizations do is outstanding and often go unnoticed.  We are proud to provide both funding and encouragement to the many volunteers and staff members who serve the community so well.”

The 2017-18 grantees are:
• Access Carroll
• Aspire Counseling
• Associated Black Charities
• Breast Care for Washington
• Channel Marker
• Community Ministries of Rockville
• Hearing and Speech Agency
• Help and Outreach Point of Entry
• La Clinica del Pueblo
• Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area
• Maryland Foundation of Dentistry for the Handicapped
• Miriam’s Kitchen
• Mission of Mercy
• Samaritan House
• University of Maryland Medical System Foundation-Breathmobile

For more information on the recipients and their grants, go to

About Quality Health Foundation

Quality Health Foundation, the mission arm of Quality Health Strategies, is a national not-for-profit organization that provides grants to charitable organizations in Maryland and the District of Columbia. Since 2006, Quality Health Foundation has awarded grants totaling almost $4.5 million to provide support to underserved communities

For more information, visit

Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Man and Woman of the Year

I’d never met even 1/8 of the people filling the huge ballroom at the Hyatt Regency in Cambridge last Saturday night for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Eastern Shore Man and Woman of the Year Grand Finale Celebration, but by the end of the evening, all 500 found a special place in my heart.  Having learned about the organization and being a donor to it since my own daughter was diagnosed in 2007 with a rare form of Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, I started getting involved with the Eastern Shore MWOY a few years ago.  You just can’t say no to Jennifer Veil, the enthusiastic, engaging MWOY coordinator –“I’m trying to cure cancer; what are you doing?!” is her daily mantra.

Although a long-standing national initiative of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the Eastern Shore Man and Woman of the Year was launched just 5 years ago with Veil at the helm.  Inspired by her young nephew’s battle with leukemia, Veil rallied family and friends – her nephew’s mother Katie Wilson, chief among them.  In the first year, the Eastern Shore MWOY had 8 candidates and raised $83,000.  This year, with 10 candidates, the campaign raised an incredible $457,480.

In the MWOY program, individuals are nominated to be candidates and then work for an intense period of 10 weeks to raise money through private donations, corporate sponsorships, securing auction items, and more.  The campaign culminates in a grand finale where all of the candidates and their teams gather to celebrate their efforts, the numbers are tallied, and the final total revealed.  The man and woman who raise the most money are named the Man of the Year and Woman of the Year respectively.

Monies donated go directly to support treatment for blood cancer patients and cutting-edge cancer research, including that of Dr. Carl June – the “rock star of blood cancer research” – who first introduced the use of modified HIV cells to kill cancer cells in advanced leukemia patients.  Many of our Eastern Shore neighbors who have fought blood cancer are directly familiar with LLS having received help with transportation costs to University of Maryland, Johns Hopkins, and other Baltimore area hospitals through the organization’s patient travel assistance program or with medical bills through their co-pay assistance programs.

In and of itself the money is amazing, but it’s the stories behind the money that move me to tears.  Standing at the back of the room that night, I listened to Kim Silpath from Galena as she talked about her son whose cancer has come back not once, not twice, but three times.  Silpath was effusive in her thanks to the crowd for their efforts that she knew would translate into better treatment and more hope for families like hers.  There was Wyatt, age 5, and Mia, age 3, this year’s Boy and Girl of the Year, dancing about with their parents.  Smiling and happy, who would know they are both in treatment for Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL)?  Then there were the cheers for Melissa Coligan, mother of 3 and this year’s Woman of the Year, who in 2015 was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) and underwent a bone marrow transplant.  Now, there she was at center stage in front of all those people, having raised over $121,000 for LLS and blood cancer research.

So what do I say to all those people I didn’t know – the candidates, their teams, all the other guests in the room who bid on auction items and donated extra money on site, all the people behind the scenes, the mom who shared her deepest pain to thank the crowd for stretching to do as much as they could to raise as much as they could to fight what I often called during my daughter’s personal battle, “the Big C”?  What do I say to all those people knowing that what they did and what those before them did through Man and Woman of the Year to fuel the organization that fueled the research that I know helped save my own daughter and so many others? Nothing other than “I’m grateful and I love you all.”

If you would like to get involved with our campaign, please contact The more the merrier! Next year’s gala will take place on June 9, 2018 in Cambridge.

Taking the Mystery Out of Easton’s Quality Health Foundation with Dr. Molly Burgoyne

There is one “big box” building at the Waterside Village that is not easy to identify. Among stores like Target, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Harris Teeter and BJ’s warehouse store, the large home of the nonprofit Quality Health Strategies remains a bit of a mystery for most who that drive by it on Marlboro Street.

Dr. Molly Burgoyne, chair of the Quality Health Foundation, the philanthropic arm of this extremely successful and locally founded health care services provider, wants to fill in that gap of local knowledge.

While QHS and its subsidiaries has grown to over 500 employees (130 of whom work in Talbot County) since it was founded decades ago by a small group of local doctors, it has always been modest in showcasing its innovative work in developing best practices for health organizations and sophisticated  integrity systems to safeguard against fraud in medical billing.

More importantly, particularly to Dr. Burgoyne, the “profit” of these enterprises goes right back into the community every year in the way of charitable grants. In fact, since 2006 QHF has awarded grants totaling more than $4.5 million to 66 organizations in Maryland and the District of Columbia.

The Spy spent some time with Dr. Burgoyne, who is best known locally as a highly regarded rheumatologist in the region, to talk her work with the Quality Health Foundation and its remarkable impact in reaching the neediest in our community with medical coverage and care.

This video is approximately five minutes in length. For more information about the Quality Health Foundation please go here.

Recovery: Maryland Approves Pharmacies Dispensing Naloxone

The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene recently announced that Dr. Howard Haft, the agency’s Deputy Secretary for Public Health, issued a new statewide standing order that allows pharmacies to dispense naloxone, the non-addictive lifesaving drug that can reverse an opioid overdose, to all Maryland citizens. The order follows legislation passed by the Maryland General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan that included a Hogan administration proposal to enable all citizens to access naloxone. Previously, naloxone was available only to those trained and certified under the Maryland Overdose Response Program.

“As the opioid epidemic has evolved, we have worked steadily to expand access to naloxone,” said Dr. Haft. “Pharmacies play an important role in providing access to naloxone and counseling on how to recognize and respond to an opioid overdose. This order is yet another tool to fight this crisis and to provide immediate assistance to overdose victims.”

The Heroin and Opioid Prevention Effort (HOPE) and Treatment Act, a bipartisan omnibus bill passed during the 2017 legislative session that contains provisions to improve patient education and increase treatment services, included the Hogan administration’s proposed Overdose Prevention Act. This updated standing order resulting from the new law further eliminates barriers to naloxone access for anyone who may be at risk of opioid overdose or in a position to assist someone experiencing an opioid overdose.

“By allowing even more people access to naloxone, we’re helping to save lives,” said Clay Stamp, executive director of the Opioid Operational Command Center. “We must remember though, that ultimately, those suffering from the disease of addiction or substance use disorder must be linked to additional treatment to aid in their recovery.”

Single doses of naloxone, also known by the brand name Narcan, have been demonstrated as effective in reversing a heroin overdose. However, more potent drugs such as fentanyl tend to require multiple doses to reverse an overdose. Emergency services—calling 911 or taking someone to a hospital’s emergency department—should always be sought in an overdose situation.

The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s 2016 Drug-and Alcohol-Related Intoxication Deaths in Maryland Report, released earlier this month, revealed that 2,089 individuals died from overdoses last year, a 66 percent increase from 2015’s data. For more information on opioid overdose recognition and response, click here.

In March, Governor Hogan declared a State of Emergency in response to the heroin and opioid crisis ravaging communities in Maryland and across the country. This declaration activated the governor’s emergency management authority and enables increased and more rapid coordination between the state and local jurisdictions. The Opioid Operational Command Center, established by Governor Hogan in January through an Executive Order, facilitates collaboration between state and local public health, human services, education, and public safety entities to combat the heroin and opioid crisis and its effects on Maryland communities.

Before It’s Too Late is the state’s effort to bring awareness to this epidemic—and to mobilize resources for effective prevention, treatment, and recovery. Marylanders grappling with a substance use disorder can find help at and 1-800-422-0009, the state crisis hotline. 

Child Loss Support Group Partners with Talbot Hospice

Beginning June 21 the Child Loss Support Group will hold its monthly sessions at Talbot Hospice for anyone dealing with the loss of a child of any age. Ongoing sessions will be held the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 6 p.m. at 586 Cynwood Drive. Summer dates are July 19, August 16 and September 20. The group sessions are free of charge and open to the public.

The Child Loss Support Group was founded in 1986 by Talbot Hospice volunteers Betts Guthrie, Millie Parrott, Rhonda Higginbottom and community members Rob and Lynn Sanchez following the loss of their 8-year-old son Rion. Higginbottom, who served as the group’s facilitator for more than 30 years, retired in January. “It seemed like a natural fit for Talbot Hospice to take on the Child Loss Support Group,” Sanchez said. “In fact, the group started at Talbot Hospice, and it has now come full circle going back there.”

The transition officially took place on June 3rd when the Child Loss Support Group held its annual Celebration of Life commemorating Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. The ceremony is held each year at the Healing Garden, located at the entrance of The Easton Club.The garden was established in 1998 by Child Loss Support Group members as a memorial to their children and a place to remember, meditate and pray. Butterflies are released at the Celebration of Life as a symbol of hope and new life.

“The death of a child is a special kind of loss and leaves parents and families feeling confused, vulnerable and fragile,” said Talbot Hospice Bereavement Coordinator Becky DeMattia. “The support group provides a safe place for parents to share and heal, and will focus on the special needs of parents, the grief experienced, the secondary losses, the impact on families, marriages, siblings and how to create meaningful rituals to honor the child’s life. Rob, Lynn and Rhonda have lovingly cared for this group for many years, and we are honored to bring the child loss group to our program”

For more information on the Child Loss Support Group or any Talbot Hospice bereavement session, contact Becky DeMattia at 410-822-6681 or A complete list of grief support groups can be found at


Building Bridges Pediatric Therapy Services Hosts Open House & Ribbon Cutting

Pictured is a swing used in therapy at Building Bridges Pediatric Therapy Services.

Building Bridges Pediatric Therapy Services will host an Open House and Ribbon Cutting on Thursday, June 15, 2017, from 4 to 7 p.m. at its location on 8626 Brooks Drive, Unit 303 in Easton. Dorri Gowe-Lambert, OTR/L, owner and director, is a Tilghman Island native and opened the practice in Easton in 2015. The practice provides occupational therapy, speech language pathology, and physical therapy services for children, ages birth through adolescence.

Building Bridges Pediatric Therapy Services is a private outpatient pediatric practice offering individualized, goal-directed therapy using a play-based approach to help children with such issues as Sensory Processing Disorder, Developmental Delays, ADHD, Communication Deficits, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Orthopedic Conditions, Learning Differences, Spina Bifida, Cerebral Palsy, Neuromuscular Disorders, Torticollis, Scoliosis, Developmental  Coordination Disorder, Down Syndrome, Dyspraxia/Apraxia, and Congenital Diagnoses.

The rooms at Building Bridges were created with children in mind and include swings, climbing equipment, and a scooter ramp, as well as a colorful ball pit and child-size tables.  A separate area is designated for fine motor skill development. According to Gowe-Lambert, “Our mission is to create ‘just right’ challenges to assist children with gaining the skills necessary to achieve their highest potential.”

For further information, contact Dorri Gowe-Lambert, OTR/L at 410-822-2213 or email or visit them on Facebook.