Three doctors receive Acclaimed Physician Awards
April 03, 2008
Dr. Erik Englehart, Dr. Jagdish Patel and Dr. Joseph Baumgart, received KishHealth System’s Acclaimed Physician Awards April 2, during a reception at Northern Illinois University’s Barsema Alumni and Visitors Center.
This is the first year for the awards which recognize medical staff contributions in humanitarian community service, promotion of quality care, and outstanding service to patients.
Dr. Englehart, who practices in Sandwich, received the Outstanding Service to Patients Award. Dr. Patel, who also practices in Sandwich, received the Promotion of Quality Award. Dr. Baumgart, who practices primarily in DeKalb, received the Humanitarian Community Service Award.
Doctors on staff at Valley West and Kishwaukee community hospitals were eligible. Sixteen physicians were nominated, several multiple times. Nominations were accepted from health system employees, medical staff members and the public. Recipients were selected by teams of peers, staff and administrators.
Other Valley West medical staff members nominated were were Dr. David Faulk, Dr. Richard Mason and Dr. Dana Sutkus
“It was a great evening designed to acknowledge and celebrate the impact physicians have on their patients, the community and our hospitals,” said Kevin Poorten, KishHealth System President and CEO.
Dr. Englehart, a board certified family medicine physician in Sandwich, grew up in the Sandwich area and joined the VWCH medical staff in 2004.
Brad Copple, Valley West and Kishwaukee hospital administrator, said the nursing and support staffs at Valley West describe Dr. Englehart as caring, compassionate, attentive and accessible, to both his patients, their families and the staff.
“His empathy shows as a doctor and as a person,” Copple said.
Dr. Englehart is seen at the hospital often—in the Emergency Room in the middle of the night, on the units early the next morning, and assessing a new admission in the evening.
As a family medicine physician, he sees a range of patients. “On any given day, he might be visiting a patient at a local nursing home, seeing a baby in the hospital nursery, or sitting with a worried family member,” Copple said.
Dr. Englehart is known to make house calls, as well, sometimes stopping at the pharmacy to pickup prescriptions.
He is very generous with his time, visiting and treating patients admitted to local nursing homes. He was recently named medical director of Willowcrest Nursing Pavilion in Sandwich.
“Dr. Englehart has truly made a difference to our patients and to the care they receive,” Copple said.
Dr. Patel, a board certified cardiologist, has been practicing in Sandwich and on the Valley West Community Hospital medical staff since 2006. He practiced in DeKalb and was an active member of the Kishwaukee Community Hospital medical staff for 11 years.
“He has been involved with efforts to improve patient outcomes across the health system,” said Pamela Duffy, vice president of Patient Care Services and the Medical Staff Office.
“His knowledge and leadership have influenced physician practice, hospital policies and procedures, and our health system’s participation in national quality initiatives,” Duffy said.
At his urging, in 2005, KCH and VWCH launched the 100,000 Lives campaign, a national quality and patient safety initiative. Dr. Patel was the physician leader on a steering committee that oversaw eight separate campaigns between the two hospitals.
At KCH, he was chair of the Rapid Response System Team, a team that made great strides to reduce the frequency of Code Blue events by developing a strategy to intervene before a medical crisis developed.
In 2007, the national initiative expanded to the 5 Million Lives campaign. Dr. Patel led the way again, this time at Valley West, where his expertise was invaluable in establishing the rapid response system there.
Earlier in his relationship with KHS, he worked with emergency medicine physician, Todd Barrowclift, at KCH to improve the Emergency Department’s response to patients presenting with heart attacks, achieving national benchmarks month after month.
“Dr. Patel has truly made a difference to our patients and the care they receive,” said Duffy.
Dr. Baumgart, an obstetrician and gynecologist, has been practicing in the DeKalbarea since 1983, and serving as medical director of the DeKalb County Health Department’s Family Planning Program since 1984.
“He has devoted much of his 25-year career to caring for underserved women both in the community and internationally,” Poorten said, including six medical mission trips to Panama since 2001.
The health department’s family planning program served 50 women when it beganand has grown to serve 2,500 women annually. In 1985, Dr. Baumgart initiated the Prenatal Referral Program which rotated referrals among local physicians delivering babies in DeKalb County.
The program dissolved, however, in 2005, when Illinois’ Medicaid system failed to live up to its reimbursement obligations. To avert a local crisis, he created the “I-Care” clinic within his busy practice so he could continue to provide prenatal care to women on Medicaid. These babies account for a large percentage of the babies born at Kishwaukee Community Hospital.
Even though he is extremely busy with deliveries, he continues to provide family planning exams at the health department.
He also travels to Panama for a week with other Northern Illinois area doctors. They provide exams for more than 600 patients in mission-sponsored medical clinics and in remote villages. He brings his own ultrasound machine which allows pregnant women in these poor and remote areas to see their babies.