October 27, 2011

Harrington Elects Theresa Colognesi New Chairman

STURBRIDGE, Mass. - Oct. 26, 2011 - Harrington HealthCare System elected Theresa Colognesi as Chairman of the Board and Laurence Morrison to the Board of Directors at its Annual Meeting on Tuesday at the Publick House Historic Inn.

The Southbridge-based healthcare system, which includes Harrington Hospital, Harrington Physician Services, physician offices and major medical facilities throughout South Central Massachusetts, also elected seven new Members to its 53-person Members (formerly known as Trustees) of the Corporation.

The new Members are Luis Aviles, Kim Cameron, Jose Dingui, Connie Favreau, Susan Gunnell, Maria Perez and Melissa White.

"We have added several new Members to better reflect the diversity that we should be reflecting in the community," Harrington President and CEO Edward H. Moore announced at the Annual Meeting, which was attended by approximately 200 people, including Harrington physicians and members of the healthcare system's Management Team.

The Annual Meeting was called to order by outgoing Chairman Ronald Carlson, who completed his two-year term as Chairman of the Board and handed the reins over to Theresa Colognesi, who is employed by Savers Bank as Vice President of Human Resources. Harrington HealthCare System operates on a fiscal year that begins October 1.

The speakers at the Annual Meeting, which included Endre Tamas, M.D., President of the Medical Staff, and Kathy Vairo, President of the Harrington Auxiliary, summed up Fiscal Year 2011 and announced major initiatives for Fiscal 2012.

Colognesi spoke of Harrington's continued focus on patient-centered care.

"We create the future one patient at a time -- one good patient experience at a time," she said.

Carlson summed up Harrington's commitment to meeting the needs of the community despite the difficult economic times.

"As other institutions have cut back, we have done the opposite," he said. "We have expanded our services to fulfill our mission of Total Local Care -- TLC."

Thomas Hijeck, Vice President of Nursing, summed up a number of Harrington's accomplishments in Fiscal 2011.

"In Community Outreach, we have participated in 115 events, reaching 9,452 residents -- double the attendance of last year," he said.

The Emergency Departments at Harrington -- in Southbridge and Webster -- have dramatically reduced wait times in the past fiscal year, he said. "Door to doc" time -- the time it takes for a patient to be seen by an Emergency Department physician, decreased from 51.6 minutes to 34.7 minutes in fiscal 2010 and has averaged 28.7 minutes for the past fiscal year, Hijeck said.

Dr. Tamas, President of the Medical Staff, noted Harrington's new medical specialties, announcing that The Wound Care Center at Harrington, in Charlton, the only wound care center in the region with Hyperbaric Oxygen Chambers, which help hard-to-heal wounds, has been a financial success.

Kathy Vairo, President of the Auxiliary, focused on the Auxiliary's community outreach, including the group's donation of $2,000 to victims of the June 1 tornado. The coming year marks the 80th anniversary of the Auxiliary, she said. The Auxiliary is an organization of community members who do volunteer work and raise funds for the healthcare system.