Posts made in February, 2012

Couple Schedules Leap Day for Baby’s Birth … and for Good Reason

Posted by on Feb 29, 2012 | 0 comments

SACRAMENTO – Ronan Longwedel-Donaldson was born at Sutter Memorial Hospital on Leap Day 2012 – not by chance, but by choice.

That’s because Leap Day, Feb. 29, marked the 39th week in the pregnancy of Ronan’s mother, Andrea Longwedel, and Andrea and her husband, Scott Donaldson, knew how important it is for the health of their newborn to be full-term – at least 39 weeks in utero.

For the past year, Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento has embraced a March of Dimes initiative to not schedule inductions and C-sections before 39 weeks, unless medically necessary. Studies show that there are increased risks to babies born earlier than 39 weeks, including complications from breathing and feeding problems to blood infections. Since the policy went into effect, the number of elective deliveries has dropped from approximately 15 percent to about 5 percent.

Longwedel and Donaldson both supported waiting longer to deliver their baby and are happy for doing so.

“We heard of the initiative, and we’re totally behind it,” Donaldson said. “We understand that waiting to deliver until the 39th week is healthiest for our baby.” And Ronan is healthy, weighing in at 7 pounds, 12 ounces.

Because Longwedel had a C-section with her first birth 13 years ago, she needed to deliver by C-section with Ronan. Longwedel’s obstetrician had scheduled her C-section back in November 2011, looking at the calendar for the 39th week point of her pregnancy, and they picked Feb. 29 as the date.

“It didn’t click at first,” said Donaldson of the unusual birth date, “then we looked at each other and realized when it was. It’s unique, it’s kind of cool, kind of funky.”

Now the new parents consider the once-every-four-years date a wonderful opportunity to celebrate Ronan’s birthday on their terms.

“It’s very exciting,” Longwedel said. “When he gets older, I’m all for celebrating his birthday on March 1, but I don’t know what the answer is, really.”

Ronan was one of 13 babies born on Leap Day 2012 at Sutter Memorial Hospital, which is called “Sacramento’s baby hospital” by the community because more than 325,000 babies have been born there since opening in 1937. In November 2013, the birthing center will move to its new facility, the Anderson Lucchetti Women’s and Children’s Center, being constructed on the midtown campus of Sutter General Hospital. For more information on the Family Birth Center, go to


Sutter Medical Center Awards $2 Million to Community Organizations

Posted by on Feb 23, 2012 | 0 comments

Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento (SMCS) hosted its 11th Annual Community Awards Luncheon at the Tsakopoulos Library Galleria today, using the theme “You Are a Piece of the Puzzle.” In front of an audience of political leaders and healthcare innovators, nonprofit organizations from across the region were recognized for their tireless efforts in Sacramento’s most at-risk communities. During the luncheon, SMCS awarded more than $2 million to nonprofit organizations as part of the 2012 Community Benefit Grants Program.

Meeting community healthcare needs is the cornerstone of the SMCS mission. Throughout the regions it serves, Sutter invests more than $110 million annually in charity care for the poor and underserved and programs that increase the overall health of the community. The grant dollars are directed to innovative nonprofits that help ensure the most vulnerable families are getting the services and support they need.

“To survive, community providers and health systems like Sutter must get more efficient and become even better connected than ever before. Today’s grantees represent those important pieces of the puzzle in the Sacramento community,” says Todd Murray, Sutter Health Board of Directors and Chair of the SMCS Community Benefit Committee.

Unique to this year’s luncheon, SMCS partnered with CGI Group, Inc. – a leading provider of information technology and business process services – launching a “You Are a Piece of the Puzzle Photo Contest” for the portfolio of 2012 grantees.

Over the last month, grantees had the opportunity to create a unique photo that visually describes the impact the organization will make with Sutter funding. Each photo also needed to include their organization’s logo and incorporate the image of a puzzle piece. Organizations had until Feb. 15 to create and upload their best photo. This year’s winner is Sacramento Cottage Housing, which received a cash award of $10,000 plus a $5,000 technology solution award from contest partner CGI.

“We were so enchanted at the response to this year’s contest. Each contestant clearly showed how they align with Sutter’s mission and vision of keeping communities strong and how they are able to make broad and deep impacts with the people that need the most help. One look at the photos that came in and you will clearly see how creative and passionate our grantees are,” says Keri Thomas, Sutter Health Sacramento Sierra Region’s Director of Government and Community Relations.

The following are some of the community organizations and programs that received awards:

  • Sacramento Loaves & Fishes, $50,000, for the Genesis Mental Health program.
  • Francis House Center, $25,000, for the Almost Home project.
  • Women’s Empowerment, $50,000, for WE Works!
  • WEAVE Inc, $25,000, for Reducing Homelessness for Victims of Domestic Violence.
  • Sacramento Cottage Housing, $50,000, for the Stepping Stones Certificate Program.
  • Center for Community Health and Well-Being Inc., $25,000, for Mental Health Services for Low Income Pregnant Women.
  • CCHAT (Children’s Choice for Hearing and Talking) Center, $10,000, for its Infant/Toddler Program.
  • Sacramento Neighborhood Center, $38,522, for Community Wellness and Education Program (Wraparound Support Services).
  • Stanford Settlement Inc., $50,000, for the Teen Center.
  • Society for the Blind, $25,000, for Access to Blindness Rehabilitation and Health Services for the Visually Impaired.
  • River City Food Bank, $25,000, for Rebuild RCFB.

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Clinical Trial Begins on Vaccine Made from Patient’s Own Tumor

Posted by on Feb 8, 2012 | 0 comments

Newly-diagnosed brain cancer patients are being sought by Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento for a clinical trial of a vaccine that is made from a patient’s own tumor.

Dr. Nora Wu, along with a team of surgeons and physicians, has begun the DCVax®-L Phase II Clinical Trial at Sutter Medical Center in collaboration with the Sutter Institute for Medical Research. The study looks at the response of patients with Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) to a vaccine made from their own tumor in addition to standard radiation and chemotherapy. Read More

Award-Winning Volunteer Takes Helm as President of SDH Foundation Board of Directors

Posted by on Feb 8, 2012 | 0 comments

Photo of Janice BridgeDAVIS, Calif. – The Sutter Davis Hospital Foundation started the New Year with a new president of the board of directors. Janice Bridge, a well-known volunteer in Davis, began her term on Jan. 1. Bridge previously served as vice chairman under former Board President Jeffrey Leacox. She originally joined the board in 2007.

Bridge has served in a number of volunteer and elected positions throughout Davis since moving to the community 32 years ago. In fact, she and her husband, Adam, were recently named the C.A. Covell Citizens of the Year by the Davis Chamber of Commerce for their decades of service to the community. The couple have dedicated their time to their children’s schools and Parent Teachers Associations, local sports teams and, most recently, the Livestrong Challenge and Amgen Tour of California bike races. Janice Bridge also served on the Davis Board of Education from 1993 to 1997.

Bridge said that deep involvement in the Davis community will serve her well in her newest volunteer role.

“I really relish the opportunity to be the eyes and ears of Sutter out in the community, communicating the hospital’s vision to Davis residents and providing Sutter Davis Hospital with insight based on their responses,” she said. “Our community has very high standards, and I’ve come to see that our hospital truly lives up to those expectations. I’m looking forward to doing all I can to maintain that level of excellence.”

The SDH Foundation provides philanthropic support to meet both the needs of the hospital and the surrounding community. For more information, go to or call (530) 750-5220.

Sutter Medical Center Second in Nation to Receive Atrial Fibrillation Certification

Posted by on Feb 7, 2012 | 0 comments

SACRAMENTO – Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento became the second cardiac care center in the nation and the first in California to receive full Atrial Fibrillation Certification status from the Society of Chest Pain Centers (SCPC). The announcement comes as the nation ushers in American Heart Month, which is designed to educate the public on heart disease. Read More