Long-Time CMHS Nurses Receive Rayman Scholarships

Scholarship season continues at Community Memorial Health System with the announcement of the first inaugural Holly Rayman Nursing Scholarship recipients, Maria “Lupe” Vaca and Fiona Shaffer.  Both women are veteran members of the CMHS team who have demonstrated a true passion for nursing, a commitment to the health system, and are taking their educations to the next level.

Maria “Lupe” Vaca has worked as an RN on the 6th floor for 17 years and is passionate about Oncology nursing.  In 2014, she received a certificate of recognition from the Community Memorial Hospital Physicians for her support of the Sound Hospital Team, and in 2015 she was an American Cancer Society Oncology Nurse Honoree.  Lupe is pursuing her BSN through the University of Phoenix.

Fiona Shaffer paid many childhood visits to Community Memorial Hospital to see her grandmother who was a ward clerk on the 5th and 6th floors.  As a child, Fiona thought her grandmother was a nurse and wanted to be just like her.  For the last 16 years she’s done just that; spending her first six years as an RN on CMH’s 4th floor and the last ten years as a key member of the Labor and Delivery team.  Fiona is currently enrolled at Grand Canyon University where she is working to complete her Baccalaureate degree.

(L to R) Emilie and Myron Rayman presented Lupe Vaca and Fiona Shaffer with their scholarships.  Cynthia Fahey and Gary Wilde also attended the presentation.  Please join us in congratulating Lupe and Fiona and thanking them for their dedication to CMHS!


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Free Film Screening – Being Mortal

Being Mortal Film Screening


Dr. Atul Gawande

Join us for a free screening and discussion of the PBS FRONTLINE documentary Being Mortal. Based on the bestselling book by Dr. Atul Gawande, this film explores the hopes of patients and families facing terminal illness and their relationships with the doctors, nurses and family members who care for them.

See the film and be part of a national conversation taking place in our community that asks: “Have you and your family had these important conversations and planned ahead?”

Thursday, June 22, 2017
5:30 P.M. – 7:30 P.M.

Museum of Ventura County
100 E. Main St., Ventura

2017 Speaker Series
or contact Brown Paper Tickets

Being Mortal film screening sponsors

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2017 Meister Nursing Scholarships Awarded

Two Ventura College nursing students and Community Memorial Health System team members were recently awarded the 2017 Meister Family Foundation Nursing Scholarship.  Taylor Dransart and Dorothy Owusu were chosen by a four-member panel comprised of CMHS nursing professionals and evaluated based on a number of criteria including GPA, community involvement, and their personal stories of dedication to the field of nursing.

Taylor Dransart has worked at Community Memorial Hospital in the Mother Baby Unit for 5 years and is a proud mother herself.  Daughters Teiara, 6, and Malaya, 2, were two of Taylor’s biggest motivations to finish the RN program at Ventura College.  Taylor has wanted to be a nurse since she was a little girl and believes that nothing is more rewarding than caring for others.  She hopes to continue her career at CMHS as a Labor and Delivery or Emergency Room nurse.

Dorothy Owusu’s journey to the field of nursing began in West-Africa Ghana where she was the first of her siblings to get her high school diploma.  While attending school, Dorothy worked and helped care for her younger siblings.  When she arrived in the United States she discovered that a career in nursing would allow her to continue to care for others.  She currently works at Community Memorial Hospital as a Certified Nurse Assistant, Telemetry Technician, and Telemetry Unit Secretary and recently completed her third semester of nursing school at Ventura College.

The scholarship fund is awarded annually and was started in 2007 by Barbara Meister as a way to show her deep appreciation for the exceptional care her late husband received as a patient at Community Memorial Hospital.

Mrs. Meister (center) is pictured below with the 2017 scholarship awardees, Taylor Dransart (right) and Dorothy Owusu (left).  Please join us in congratulating both recipients for this special recognition!


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Continuing Care Center Construction Reaches Milestone-Ojai

Construction of the new Continuing Care Center (skilled nursing facility) on the Ojai Valley Community Hospital campus reached a major milestone with the recent pouring of its concrete slab.  The slab forms the foundation for an essential 75-bed center that will allow residents of the Ojai Valley and surrounding communities to receive short-term rehabilitation and long-term residential care in the comfort of their own community.

This highly anticipated phase of construction was captured in an aerial time-lapse video that illustrates both the magnitude of the project and the expansiveness of the new CCC.

Click here to watch the video.

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CMHS Earns Stroke Gold Quality Achievement Award

The care our patients receive at Community Memorial Health System is our number one priority. That’s why we are proud to announce that CMHS has once again been awarded the American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines – Stroke Quality Achievement Award!

This award highlights Community Memorial Health System’s dedication and success in implementing the highest standards in stroke care and providing our patients with the best in nationally accepted and evidence-based stroke treatment.

American Stroke Association Regional Director Ron Loomis, Jr. (far left) visited the Ventura campus yesterday to present the award.  Accepting on behalf of CMHS were (L to R) Dr. Al Boiney, Elaina Hall, Stephanie Lara-Jenkins, Claudia Hemming, Cynthia Fahey, Kathy Wright, Amy Querol, Cindy DeMotte, and Gary Wilde.

Please join us in congratulating the entire CMHS staff on this outstanding achievement!

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Infants Remembered Through Memory Box Program

Her name is Olivia Grace Venegas – a tiny infant who was loved immensely in her short life and will be loved forever. She was born at Community Memorial Hospital on April 12, 2012, and lived a brief 17 minutes. But the meaning of someone’s life can’t be judged by its length.

Beautiful Olivia Grace inspired her parents, Toby and Sarah, to celebrate her life each April when they invite friends and family to contribute to a fund through which Community Memorial Hospital can purchase some very special Memory Boxes to give to parents who suffer the loss of an infant. These boxes are filled with cherished mementos such as the infant’s foot or hand print; a pin of tiny baby feet for the parents to wear; a bracelet for the mother; and a picture of the infant wrapped in a tiny blanket.

This year, the Venegas family came to CMH with their 1-year-old son and presented Megan Rodarte (far right), Director of Maternal Child Health, and Christine Stella (far left), Manager of Labor and Delivery, with a check for $655 to purchase Memory Boxes.


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Free Seminar – What is a Hospitalist?

2017 Speaker Series

Who is This Doctor Taking Care of Me in the Hospital?

Chances are, if you have been admitted to the hospital recently, you weren’t cared for by your usual doctor. Instead, a doctor you didn’t know and had never seen before, was in charge of your care. You may have wondered:

  • Where is my doctor?
  • Why isn’t my doctor here to coordinate my care while I’m in the hospital?
  • Does my doctor even know that I’m in
    the hospital?
  • Will my doctor be updated about my care?

In this seminar, Dr. Desai will explain what a hospitalist is, the role they play in your care, and the many advantages of having a hospitalist oversee the treatment you receive during your stay.


Dr. Christina Desai is a hospitalist physician specializing in internal medicine. She received her medical degree from Albert Einstein School of Medicine and completed her residency at Montefiore Medical Center in New York. Dr. Desai is a member of the Society of Hospitalist Medicine, and she is affiliated with Pacific Inpatient Physicians, the hospitalist provider for CMH.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017
6:00 P.M.
Community Memorial Hospital
Nichols Auditorium, 8th Floor
147 N. Brent St., Ventura


Or contact Brown Paper Tickets
at 800/838-3006


News Talk 1590 KVTA SeaView IPA Accountable Care Alliance of Ventira, LLC


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Construction Update on the new Continuing Care Center – Ojai

The construction of the new Continuing Care Center (skilled nursing facility) in Ojai is well underway as the concrete footings have recently been placed.

The new 75-bed facility will provide a valuable resource for short-term rehabilitation and long-term care, both for the residents of the Ojai Valley as well as the surrounding region.

The new center is slated to open in the Spring of 2018.

Click here for pictures

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7 Ways to Help Prevent a Stroke

1. Manage blood pressure 2. Control cholesterol 3. Reduce blood sugar 4. Get active 5. Eat better 6. Lose weight 7. Stop smoking

Every 40 seconds, someone has a stroke in the U.S., but 80% of all strokes are preventable. You have the power to prevent stroke and be a Stroke Hero by controlling your high blood pressure and taking steps to live a healthier lifestyle.

Learn more about stroke prevention


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5 Things Every Stroke Hero Should Know

Are You a Stroke Hero?

You don’t need superpowers to be a Stroke Hero. You just need to know the stroke warning signs and the risk factors of stroke. Join the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association in the effort to teach all Americans when to respond fast to a stroke and 5 important facts you should know about stroke:

  1. Stroke risk increases with age, but young adults, children, and even babies in the womb can suffer strokes. If one of your parents had an ischemic stroke before 65, you are at 3X THE RISK of suffering one yourself.
  2. High blood pressure is public enemy #1. About three out of four people who suffer first strokes have high blood pressure.
  3. Anyone can have a stroke, but some are at increased risk. African Americans have nearly twice the risk for a first-ever stroke than Caucasians.
  4. Clot-busting drugs and medical devices have made stroke largely treatable, but every second counts. The faster you are treated, the more likely you are to recover without permanent disability.
  5. Friends usually save friends from stroke. Learn to recognize the warning signs of stroke.

Be Aware, Act Fast, and Call 911 – Learn the Warning Signs


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