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Victory Greens, Lenox Hill Hospital’s rooftop garden, has recently opened for its 4th growing season

LH victory gardens

Victory Greens, Lenox Hill Hospital’s rooftop garden, has recently opened for its 4th growing season

Written by: Pamela Johnson

What is Victory Greens?

Victory Greens, supported by both Lenox Hill Hospital (LHH) Administration and the health system’s GreenBERG, is a rooftop garden created for everyone who works at LHH to enjoy. Last year, I was given the opportunity to manage the garden, which has been as great a pleasure for me as the success we’ve had for employees.

Over 18,000 visits were made to the garden by LHH employees last year, a significant increase over the prior year. Last year, we hosted 8 Snipping Events that were attended by over 600 employees. At the events, employees had the chance to take home fresh herbs and produce from the garden and learn how to use them in new recipes, drinks and more. One employee who had never cooked with fresh herbs was so inspired by the garden’s bounty that she changed her entire eating habits. She lost 30 pounds and was able to go off of her blood pressure medicine by the end of the snipping season.

This year we are expanding the Snipping Events to include an educational component. We’ll be hosting programs targeting Body, Mind, and Spirit as well as a program on Nutrition and Cooking and one on Exercise. We’ll also be having our first “Mobile Garden” this season, which will allow us to deliver “snippings” to our colleagues at off-site facilities so they may enjoy products from the garden.

Benefits of our rooftop garden- patients and employees

Recent scientific studies have shown that it is critical for a person’s mental and physical health and overall well-being to have at least one direct touch with nature/day. Victory Greens allows us to have a touch of nature, even on a rooftop in NYC.

After a hard shift or a long day, the garden offers employees a place of solace, rest and fresh air, which is important after working inside all day or night. The rooftop garden also presents a wonderful opportunity to meet fellow employees, many of whom would, otherwise, never come into contact with one another. Numerous friendships have been formed over lunch or catching sun rays in the garden. In fact, the garden affords the opportunity to touch everyone in the LHH community, including our patients. Herbs from the garden are used in patient meals as well as in the cafeteria and in the catered events we often host for guests.

Fun fact: There’s at least one species indigenous to every continent represented in the garden and nearly 100 varieties of plants, herbs, vegetables, and fruit are currently growing on the rooftop.

Giving back to our community

Victory Greens has also led to the development of a wonderful relationship with our Community Partner, Harlem Grown. Harlem Grown is an organization whose mission is to inspire youth to lead healthy, productive, fulfilling lives. Through mentorship and urban farming, Harlem Grown increases access to, and knowledge of, healthy food for Harlem residents and provides garden-based development programs to Harlem youth. Our relationship with Harlem Grown began last summer and our programs and connections continue to grow. We have held a number of highly successful outreach events with the Harlem Grown community, including hosting a Teaching Kitchen event which offered information about nutrition, healthy eating and growing herbs and our most recent event in recognition of Earth Day, where we helped children from PS 197 plant flowers around their school. A mix of employees from clinical to non-clinical volunteered to participate in these events and they all have said their experience was as rewarding for them as it was the kids.

How it’s impacted my life

Personally, Victory Greens has had a profound impact on my life. Through the garden, I’ve been able to connect with colleagues I never would have met. I’ve had the opportunity to make a deep commitment to the community around us as well as to make a sincere pledge to help preserve the environment.  I’ve taken an active role in The GreenBERG, Northwell Health’s Business Employee Resource Group focused on environmentally conscientious initiatives. The mission of The GreenBERG is to improve the environmental impact of our facilities by advancing sustainable and socially responsible efforts across Northwell Health and in our communities.

From my involvement with Victory Greens and The GreenBERG, I’ve learned many things and have transformed my view of our planet. I now only wear clothing to work that is made out of sustainable materials, and I have developed a keen interest in trying to resolve recycling and other waste issues that plague hospitals. Who knows what solutions we may ultimately discover, but the magic of Victory Greens seems to be far reaching and highly impactful. Imagine…all that may, and all that has, come from an extraordinary rooftop garden at Lenox Hill Hospital.


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Our people have spoken – they think our CEO is the best!


Our people have spoken – they think our CEO is the best!

Congratulations to Michael Dowling on being named among the top 100 CEOs by Glassdoor

As employees of Northwell Health, we’ve always known it. But now, the rest of the world knows that our CEO, Michael J. Dowling is one of the best CEOs of 2017! Based on our employees’ feedback, he has just been ranked among the top large U.S. company CEOs in the 2017 Glassdoor® Employees’ Choice Awards. In fact, he’s the fourth highest ranked health care CEO! It’s no surprise. Because when it comes to building a world-renowned health system, Mr. Dowling is made for this.

“I’m honored to be recognized for my leadership by Northwell employees – my colleagues. The truth is employees at every level are truly the lifeblood of our health system,” said Mr. Dowling. “Our health care professionals and the support teams that treat our patients at the most-vulnerable times of their lives require not only expert clinical skills but compassion as well.”

Glassdoor is one of the world’s largest and fastest growing job sites. Its annual report highlights the Highest Rated CEOs throughout North America. Mr. Dowling’s 91% employee approval ratings are showing the world what we already know: his commitment and passion to our mission. This is a place where we are all empowered and engaged to go further, to challenge the state of health care and to deliver the highest quality care possible. As we passionately live out this vision, we’re delivering significant results. Our nurses’ engagement and satisfaction scores are the highest in New York City.

We congratulate Mr. Dowling on this prestigious honor and thank him for making Northwell Health such an incredible place to work. This award is also proof that our highest level of leadership delivers the kind of outstanding performance we expect of all our employees. Are you made for an employer that expects your best and helps you achieve it? Then you might be made for this.

Additional details on the results of the Glassdoor survey can be found here.

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Huntington Hospital receives its 4th Magnet® designation

Huntington Magnet

Huntington Hospital receives its 4th Magnet® designation

Huntington Hospital, one of our community hospitals, has recently attained its 4th Magnet® designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). This is the highest honor an organization can receive for excellence in nursing care. In addition to being the first on Long Island,  they are also second in New York State, and one of just 36 in the country to receive Magnet four or more times.  Magnet status is the gold standard for nursing excellence – a reflection of Huntington Hospital’s nursing professionalism, strong collaboration, innovation, and teamwork as well as superiority in patient care.

Huntington Hospital’s culture is built on a commitment to quality, exceptional experience, and excellence for both patients and employees.  “Our Nursing Leadership team is professional, dedicated, and committed to ensuring the best practice environment,” said Janet Milanese, Associate VP of Nursing.

Their nurses are able to practice in a supportive environment where opportunities are abundant, innovation is encouraged and their voices are heard. Their nurses work collaboratively and collegially with their interdisciplinary team to provide the best outcomes for their patients. “Senior leadership remains committed to nursing and meeting their strategic goals by supporting education, certification, and resources necessary to continue to provide high-quality care.  Achieving and maintaining Magnet designation is a true testament to not only nursing efforts but also the efforts of all that support the nursing department at Huntington Hospital,” said Donna Tanzi, Director of Nursing Education and Professional Development.

Nurses at Magnet facilities can feel the strong attraction between the two as they are known for their high retention rates, high job and employee engagement/satisfaction scores, as well as a culture of excellence and positive patient outcomes. “As a new nurse seeking employment, Huntington Hospital was my number one choice because of their sterling reputation as a Magnet designated hospital. Working alongside nurses who hold such high standards has given me an unsurpassable advantage in my career. I consider myself very lucky to work in an organization that thrives on education and excellence,” said Jessica Shremshock, RN. Nurses are identified as the pioneers at the forefront of our evolving health system and all aspects of patient care, and the nurses at Huntington Hospital are always keeping the patient and their family’s needs at heart and find innovative ways to meet those needs. It’s that sense of empathic necessity that keeps their nurses motivated and constantly seeking ways to improve the care of their patients by refining nursing-sensitive indicators and keeping patients at the center.

Huntington Hospital nurses feel empowered knowing they have a voice that will be heard, and this support reinforces the culture of pride that is felt by all who work here. Megan, a registered nurse in the ER reaffirms just how special working at a Magnet organization feels, stating, “Working in a Magnet facility reminds me every day why I chose a career in nursing in the first place.” Shannell Blanchard, RN, also adds, “Working at Huntington Hospital has really changed the way I practice nursing. As a magnet hospital, they hold their nurses to standards of excellence and it has given me a foundation with which to be a better nurse. I am glad I made the choice to work here.”

Being recognized by Magnet is a tremendous honor.  The culture of excellence at Huntington Hospital continually inspires the highest level of safety, quality,  and patient and staff satisfaction. This fourth achievement affirms the foundation of nursing excellence they have built.Explore their nursing opportunities. (link to RN Huntington positions)

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Welcome to the new Emergency Department at Southside Hospital


Welcome to the new Emergency Department at Southside Hospital 

I had the privilege of taking a tour of the new Bohlsen Family Emergency Department at Southside Hospital. Once I walked through the sliding doors only one word came to my mind: WOW. This newly renovated facility had light colored walls, a beautiful structure, an open atmosphere and a  welcoming feeling to it. I was greeted by Jim Wescott, ED Nurse Manager, and Harold Fischer, ED Director of Patient Care Services, who began to explain this beautifully built facility. The new building is three times larger than the old ED, and is able to treat 70,000 patients a year because of the new set-up, process improvements, and the amount of staff they have working at any given time. Looking around the new 30,000 square foot facility I began to ask a million questions – what were the new rooms I was looking at? What did the lighting system above each door mean? Why was the department built this way? The list went on, and on.

Jim and Harold began the tour with a look at the new private patient rooms and began to answer my questions about the lighting notification system that each room had.  They showed me the chart inside each room that showed a color coded system which helps streamline the patient examination process and experience, and the 4 lights above each door change with the patient and room needs. The red light means that there is a patient in the room and needs vital signs taken. The yellow light means that there is a provider in the room, the green light means the room needs cleaning, and the blue light means that the patient needs care. The lights also flash to indicate that the patient needs care, the patient is ready to move, or the room is empty.” 

They then went into the building design and how it was created with two major factors in mind, the  patient experience and employee needs. Designed for efficiency, the re-construction of the ED absorbs excess noise so it creates a calming atmosphere, even when it’s at full capacity. You can actually hear a pin drop! There are two central nursing stations so it gives nurses and doctors the extra room they need and creates a better working environment. With 16 private rooms and a 5 bed isolation unit, the nurses are constantly moving between patients, and after talking to a few it was clear that they appreciate having two stations to choose from. 

“I love the new ED – it’s great to have 2 nurses’ stations because you always have access to what you need when you need it. When you have 2 stations, you are constantly in contact with everyone and you are always walking past your patients, which makes you check on them more. This also increases communication between nurses and doctors with their patients which allows us to provide them with the best care possible.” said Jeanette Pisano, Emergency RN.




Independent Treatment Rooms


Nursing Station


Results Waiting Area


Treatment Chairs




Jim continued to say, “With the new process improvements and design we have been able to set a new standard of Emergency  care for our patients” Since the opening they have been able to increase their PresGaney scores from the 10th percentile to the 75th  Dr. Gregory Garra, one of the Emergency Department doctors said,

“The new ED gives us the capability to take medicine and turn it upside down. It takes a little bit to get used to, but once you understand the process it’s a breath of fresh air. The learning curve took less than a week, and it helps everyone – from the patients, to the nurses to the doctors. From a clinical perspective the new department and lighting system allows you to receive support right from the gecko because of all the communication. As a doctor I am able to see the patients right away – they send them in and I see them. The support is far better than the traditional support found in other hospitals.”

From there we headed towards the new Behavioral Health Department which was designed for the safety of the patients, as well as the staff. The unit consists of 6 private rooms with a secure interview room when they first check in. I was able to chat with the staff working there which consisted of security guards, social workers, registered nurses, environmental services workers, and a psychiatrist. The great part about the layout of the department was that the workers always have views of all of the rooms so they could keep watch of their patients while talking to me. The unique part about the new Behavioral Health department was that they had their own ambulance entrance for patients to come through. This was something that the nurses really loved, because the team can immediately start assessing patients and give them the care they needed without having to go through the ED.

The rest of the trip consisted of viewing the helipad for our SkyHealth helicopter program, touring the old Emergency Department, and talking about the next steps to come – which includes a Pediatric ED, infectious disease unit and a new unit for patients who need to have a longer stay. With 60 treatment spaces, radiology suites, a rapid access area, a new layout, and process improvements, it seems as if this new Emergency Department has it all – for the patients, and for the employees.

lbluetip Experience the new Emergency Department for yourself – explore our current openings at Southside Hospital.

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Say Hello to our 3 New Imaging Centers

X Ray

The most advanced and accurate imaging equipment is only as good as the radiologists interpreting the studies. Northwell Health Imaging has the largest group of subspecialized, fellowship-trained radiologists on Long Island. We are excited to welcome three new imaging centers to our expanding service line. 

Northwell Health Imaging is the first radiology practice in New York State – and seventh in the nation – to be designated as a Diagnostic Center of Excellence by the American College of Radiology (ACR) for achieving the highest levels of imaging quality, safety, and care.  Our imaging centers are also accredited by the ACR as Breast Imaging Centers of Excellence and the Lung Cancer Alliance has named our facilities Screening Centers of Excellence. 

When you become part of Northwell Health Imaging  you will be joining a dedicated group of radiologists, nurse navigators, certified technologists, and caring support staff. 

Learn more about our three new Imaging Centers:

Imaging at Bayshore 


Northwell Health Imaging at Bay Shore offers a wide variety of diagnostic services, offering employees access to the latest imaging technology on the south shore of Long Island. In addition to MRI, PET/CT with low dose capability, SPECT/CT, ultrasound and digital X-ray, Imaging at Bay Shore will offer interventional radiology. 

Imaging at Lenox Hill Greenwich Village 


Northwell Health Imaging at Greenwich Village offers a full range of diagnostic and breast imaging services. Combining state-of-the-art equipment and advanced technology with subspecialized radiologists, this site offers employees access to outpatient radiology services in Manhattan. Services include: MRI, low dose CT, ultrasound, digital X-ray and bone densitometry. Comprehensive breast imaging services are also offered: 3D mammography, breast ultrasound, breast MRI and breast biopsies. 

Imaging at Smithtown 


Northwell Health Imaging at Smithtown also offers a full spectrum of diagnostic testing services including MRI, low dose CT, ultrasound, digital X-ray, bone densitometry, image-guided biopsies and procedures – all in spa-inspired settings. The center also offers comprehensive breast imaging services including 3D mammography, breast ultrasound, breast MRI and image-guided breast biopsies.  

Join our team at one of our Imaging Centers and apply today.