Serious as a Heart Attack

Earlier this month, nearly 50 Sun Health Foundation friends gathered in the Sun City West home of Birt and Louisa Kellam for some socializing and refreshments. It may have looked like a normal party to the casual observer, but things were about to get serious.

Birt Kellam introduced Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center (BDWMC) CEO Debbie Flores, who thanked the assembled for their financial support of the medical center and gave examples of how that support has paid dividends in providing superior health care for the community.

She turned it over to cardiologist Fredric Klopf, M.D. who outlined how donor contributions have led to advances in cardiac care at BDWMC, including the 90-minute door-to-balloon treatment standard approved by the American College of Cardiology for treating heart attacks. Early treatment has been found to not only save lives, but also to minimize heart- and brain-tissue damage.

Suddenly, one of guests clutched his chest, complaining of chest pain, pressure, and shortness of breath.   Continue reading

Photo of Colonnade Resident Sky Diver Wins International Contest

Sharon Vizzini, resident of The Colonnade, went skydiving in October 2012. In May 2014, this photo was awarded second place in an international photo contest.

Sharon Vizzini, resident of The Colonnade, went skydiving in October 2012. In May 2014, this photo was awarded second place in an international photo contest.

PHOENIX (May 23, 2014) –– On May 21, 2014, Grantmakers in Aging (GIA) announced the selection of 18 winners of its first “Friendly Faces, Friendly Places” international photo contest, supported by the Pfizer Foundation. Out of the 500 photos submitted worldwide, one local photo was announced as a winner. The photo of Surprise resident Sharon Vizzini sky diving at age 70, placed second in the “Older and Active” category. The photo was provided by Sun Health Senior Living and submitted by the Greater Phoenix Age-Friendly Network.

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Grand Canyon Nursing Students Learning Skills at Sun Health

Students from the Grand Canyon University nursing program at Banner Boswell attend orientation at Sun Health where they will be doing clinical rotations this summer.

People in purple scrubs will be popping up at various Sun Health locations this summer. The purple ones are senior nursing students at Grand Canyon University and each Tuesday, now through August, they will be doing community health clinical rotations at the Center for Health & Wellbeing, in the Care Transitions program or at each of Sun Health’s three senior living communities.

The students are part of a GCU’s College of Nursing and Health Care Professions based at Banner Boswell Medical Center. Continue reading

“Thank You Thursday” Recognition Goes to Season For Sharing

A deep and heartfelt THANK YOU to Season For Sharing – the $10,000 grant they gifted to our Sun Health Memory Care Navigator program will help us continue to provide free healthcare services to patients, families and caregivers dealing with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and other memory loss conditions.

Season For Sharing grant recipient

Season For Sharing funds are raised through an Arizona Republic, azcentral.com and 12 News annual holiday fundraiser.

Today is “Thank You Thursday” – a day to celebrate donors and beneficiaries alike who have benefited from this incredible fundraiser. As a beneficiary, we are grateful to the media and community who made this possible. From the bottom of our hearts…. THANK YOU. We are honored by your generosity.

The grant will be used towards the following services:

  • Free access to Marty Finley, M.Ed., a Sun Health geriatric care manager with 15 years experience in memory loss conditions
  • In-home assessments
  • The creation of customized memory loss care plans with each patient and their family
  • Connecting patients and family to relevant community resources
  • Being a resource for families/caregivers as patients goes through different stages of dementia
  • Educating patients and family about local clinical trials
  • Collaborating with each patient’s physicians
  • And more!

The Memory Care Navigator program is funded 100 percent by the Sun Health Foundation through charitable giving and grants, such as the Season For Sharing program. Learn more about it here: http://www.sunhealth.org/memorycare/.

 

Sun Health Foundation Golf Tournament an ‘Ace In The Hole’

Sharon G foursome_4web

Many thanks to the players, sponsors and volunteers who participated in the 2014 Swinging in the Sun for Aces Golf Tournament, held March 10 on the Patriot Course at Wigwam Arizona.

The tournament raised money for the Sun Health Memory Care Navigator program, providing free personalized support for patients and caregivers affected by memory loss.

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‘Cardiac Kids’ Put Heart into Raising Funds for Cardiac Research at BSHRI

Tournament Director Ken Skinner, Foundation Gift Officer Bonnie Olsen, Dewi Gaballa (wife of Dr. Gaballa) and researcher Dr. Mohamed Gaballa.

Tournament Director Ken Skinner, Foundation Gift Officer Bonnie Olsen, Dewi Gaballa (wife of Dr. Gaballa) and researcher Dr. Mohamed Gaballa at softball fundraiser.

The weather was chilly with overcast skies, but that didn’t dampen the spirits of the 50 senior men who played in the Bill Bromley Memorial Cardiac Kids Softball Tournament on Saturday, Feb. 1 at Liberty Buick Field in Sun City West. Players ribbed each other mercilessly and hot-dogged it on the field, but there was a higher purpose.

The players share a history of heart problems and this was their 9th annual tournament to raise funds for cardiac research. This year’s event raised nearly $2,000 for cardiac stem-cell research being conducted by Mohamed Gaballa, PhD, at the Banner Sun Health Research Institute. Dr. Gaballa was on hand to report on his research, thank the crowd for their support and to throw out the first pitch. Despite the players’ health issues, the atmosphere was markedly light-hearted.   Continue reading

Neuro Wellness West Offers New Hope for People with Parkinson’s

Donor Sara Dean with Sun Health Foundation (SHF) Gift Officer Bonnie Olsen and SHF Board Member Lew Lancaster at Neuro Wellness West Open House, Jan. 31, at BSHRI.

Donor Sara Dean with Sun Health Foundation (SHF) Gift Officer Bonnie Olsen and SHF Board Member Lew Lancaster.

Like the Parkinson’s patients who fill its classes, the Neuro Wellness West program at Banner Sun Health Research Institute (BSHRI) is “on the move.” The fitness, wellness and support program for Parkinson’s patients and their loved ones began offering classes in late October. In the ensuing three months, 54 people have registered, 80 classes have been held and more than 450 people have attended one or more of the classes.

A Jan. 31st open house for the Neuro Wellness West program attracted more than 100 people, offering further proof of the program’s popularity.

Holly Shill, MD, head of BSHRI’s Thomas H. Christopher Center for Parkinson’s Research, played a key role in breathing life into the program and she’s pleasantly surprised by its rapid rise. “To go from an idea, to funding, to enrolling people in the program, all in one year’s time, is truly amazing.”  Continue reading

Unique All Par 3 Golf Tournament Raises Funds for Local Health Causes

Wigwam Blue Coruse Island Green Eye LevelA few sweet swings of a golf club could lead to windfall of prizes during Sun Health Foundation’s Swinging in the Sun for Aces Golf Tournament, scheduled for 12:30 p.m. on Monday, March 10 at Wigwam Arizona’s Patriot Course in Litchfield Park.

This all par-3 party provides players with an opportunity to win amazing prizes on each hole, including a Lexus automobile as a hole-in-one prize. Each hole prize is valued at $5,000 or more.  Continue reading

Gift to Sun Health Foundation Kick-Starts Wellness Program for Parkinson’s Patients

Jim Dean does a ladder drill in a Neuro Wellness West class.

Jim Dean believes exercise is important to maintaining mobility as he ages. After being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2007, it became a necessity. Dean threw himself into a rigorous exercise routine that he’s kept up for the past six years. There’s no doubt in his mind, and in the minds of his wife, doctors and other health professionals, that the workouts have had a positive effect.

Seeing the results inspired Jim and his wife Sara to help fund Banner Neuro Wellness West, a new program at Banner Sun Health Research Institute (BSHRI) that provides exercise, education and support for people with Parkinson’s disease and other neurological disorders. Continue reading