Fundraising Event Launches New Jersey Orthopedic Hospital
NEWARK, N. J. (November 25, 2009) –– A fundraising dinner to honor one of the nation’s most renowned orthopedic surgeons has launched the effort to create the New Jersey Orthopedic Hospital at Saint Michael’s Medical Center. The orthopedic hospital will be modeled after the renowned Dorr Institute in Los Angeles, and Dr. Lawrence Dorr, founder of the Institute, attended the dinner Friday night to accept an award.
He was introduced by Dr. Richard Boiardo, chief of Orthopedic Surgery at Saint Michael’s.
“Dr. Dorr’s personal philosophies about the importance of giving back to the community have had a profound personal and professional impact on me,” Dr. Boiardo said of Dr. Dorr, his friend and mentor. “He is truly an inspiration.”
Construction for the New Jersey Orthopedic Hospital is scheduled to begin in three to six months.
“We’ll be taking an orthopedics program that already is among the best of its kind in the region and transforming it into a ‘hospital-within-a-hospital’,” said Robert H. Evans, CEO of Saint Michael’s Medical Center. “Everything our patients need will be in one place: X-rays, exam rooms, top orthopedic nurses, patient education, and patient beds.”
An honored guest at the dinner was The Honorable William J. Pascrell, Jr., a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New Jersey’s 8th district. Rep. Pascrell was lauded for his efforts to improve the safety of devices used in hip and knee replacement surgeries.
Rep. Pascrell of Paterson is a co-sponsor of the Knee and Hip Replacement Act, which he introduced earlier this year in response to requests from the nation’s leading orthopedic surgeons, including Dr. Lawrence Dorr, who expressed a need for a national registry of implanted knee and hip replacement devices.
As many as 18 percent of hip and knee replacements require costly revision surgeries to repair or replace failed devices, putting avoidable hardships on patients and added Medicare costs on taxpayers.
“I have worked closely with orthopedic surgeons and we agree that a joint registry is important to provide the best care possible for their patients,” said Pascrell, a member of the House Ways and Means Committee and its subcommittee on health.
“Saint Michael’s Medical Center‘s new orthopedic care facility will upgrade the quality of health care in Essex County, while allowing the hospital to expand its compassionate mission of caring for the poor. It was an honor to express appreciation for the work Dr. Boiardo and Dr. Dorr have being doing to advance orthopedic medicine, as well as to Saint Michael’s for keeping as many patients on their feet as possible.”
Newark also has been named a host city for Operation Walk, a non-profit, volunteer medical mission that provides free surgery for patients with debilitating bone and joint conditions in developing countries and in the United States. Operation Walk was founded in 1995 by Dr. Dorr.
Operation Walk will provide surgery to poor and uninsured patients in Newark and surrounding communities, as well as provide care for clinically challenging patients, such as those with hemophilia or HIV. In many cases these are people who are crippled and unable to walk. Many live with debilitating pain.
Early next year, an Operation Walk team from Saint Michael’s, led by Dr. Boiardo, will visit one of the poorest areas of Vietnam to provide orthopedic surgeries for people in that country.
The more than 150 people who attended the event at Mayfair Farms in West Orange on Friday watched a video that focused on patients whose ability to walk was restored by the hospital’s orthopedic center. Gloria Gaynor, a popular recording artist and a past patient of Dr. Bioardo, was among them. “Patients will benefit from the finest and most innovative care available,” she said in expressing her support.
Established by the Franciscan Sisters of the Poor
in 1867, Saint Michael’s Medical Center is a 357-bed regional tertiary-care,
teaching and research center in the heart of Newark’s business and
educational district. Saint Michael’s Medical Center is a member
of Catholic Health East (CHE). Based in Newtown Square, Pennsylvania,
Catholic Health East is one of the nation’s largest nonprofit health
systems, with 34 hospitals in 11 states. More
information is available at www.smmcnj.org.