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News of Otsego County

Bassett Healthcare

Bassett’s Dr. LeCates ‘transitioning away’ from Network leadership

Bassett’s Dr. LeCates ‘transitioning away’
from Network leadership

Bassett Medical Center President and Chief Operating Officer Dr. William LeCates is moving on, announcing to colleagues today (January 12) his plans to transition away from his leadership role at Bassett Healthcare to pursue a new opportunity in New York City.

Bassett Healthcare Network Director of Marketing and Communications Angie Blair said Dr. LeCates will remain with Bassett as its Northern Region Executive through April 30, 2022, to ensure “continuity of leadership as we move forward.”

NYS to force temporary halt to electives at Bassett in Cooperstown

NYS to force temporary halt to electives at Bassett in Cooperstown

The New York State Department of Health on Monday (December 20) added Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital in Cooperstown to its list of health care facilities with “minimal capacity,” forcing a temporary halt to elective surgeries and procedures for at least two weeks beginning later this week.

Under a November Executive Order from Governor Kathy Hochul, the state bars facilities with a staffed bed capacity of 10 percent or less from performing certain elective procedures and surgeries. Certain electives remain allowed, including those relating to cancer and diagnostic reviews, neurosurgery, intractable pain, trauma, cardiac with symptoms, and others.

Bassett chief reflects on a busy first year at helm
Dr. Ibrahim

Bassett chief reflects on a busy first year at helm

[Editor’s note: We invited Dr. Tommy Ibrahim, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bassett Healthcare Network, to reflect on his first year at the helm of our regional healthcare facilities. He provided to The Freeman’s Journal and Hometown Oneonta the following as a first-person, open letter to the communities the network serves.]

Dear Friends, Neighbors and Colleagues,

By many measures, 2021 was challenging and transformative for our community and Bassett Healthcare Network. When I began my tenure as President and CEO of Bassett, we were in the early stages of a pandemic that we hoped would last weeks or months, but became the largest global pandemic in a century. This crisis has been daunting and has tested our resolve in ways we could not have imagined. Through it all, our caregivers and practitioners did what they do best — cared selflessly for our patients and community.

Bassett offering vaccine clinic in Cooperstown on Saturday, December 4

Bassett offering vaccine clinic in Cooperstown
on Saturday, December 4

Bassett Healthcare is offering a vaccine clinic to the community, including children ages 5 to 17, on Saturday, December 4 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Bassett Medical Center’s outpatient clinic in Cooperstown.

The clinic will offer boosters for the Moderna, Johnson and Johnson, and Pfizer as well as first and second Pfizer doses for children and flu shots.

Those receiving vaccines need to be established patients of Bassett Healthcare network in order to participate.

Bassett bonuses thank workers
Dr. Tommy Ibrahim

Bassett bonuses thank workers

By Ted Potrikus

Bassett Healthcare Network last week awarded ‘gratitude’ bonuses to its full complement of some 5,000 full- and part-time employees, made possible in large part through a donation from the Scriven Foundation.

Speaking with The Freeman’s Journal and Hometown Oneonta, Bassett Healthcare Network President and CEO Dr. Tommy Ibrahim credited the entire staff for its hard work throughout another year of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Of course it’s been another tumultuous year,” he said. “Bassett Healthcare and every person we serve was carried through it on the shoulders of our caregivers and practitioners.”

Bassett Healthcare Network Gives Gratitude Bonuses to Employees

Bassett Healthcare Network Gives Gratitude Bonuses to Employees

 

Cooperstown, N.Y. – Bassett Healthcare Network announced today that full- and part-time employees across the health system will receive substantial gratitude bonuses, made possible in large part through a generous donation from the Scriven Foundation. Bassett Medical Center board chair Jane Forbes Clark was instrumental in advocating for the funding.

The bonus comes as a thank you to Bassett Healthcare Network’s nearly 5,000 caregivers and practitioners for their dedication and hard work through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Bassett Cancer Institute Shines a Light on Lung Cancer this November
The Cancer Service Line Caregivers and Practitioners at the Bassett Cancer Institute observe Whiteout Wednesday.

Bassett Cancer Institute Shines a Light on Lung Cancer this November

Today is Whiteout Wednesday, a virtual event sponsored by Bassett Cancer Institute (BCI) in order raise awareness for Lung Cancer Awareness Month. Community members, patients and Bassett employees are wearing white to shine a light on this disease.

November 18, 2021 is the Great American Smokeout-a day dedicated to quitting tobacco use. Patients who use tobacco and wish to quit are invited to visit www.bassett.org/2021-smokeout to find resources including Bassett’s one-on-one tobacco cessation counseling.

Bassett Healthcare forced to cut service because of worker shortages

Bassett Healthcare
forced to cut service
because of worker shortages

By KEVIN LIMITI • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Just one day after the vaccination mandate deadline, Bassett Healthcare was forced to cut services in certain areas because of a loss of staff members, Tuesday, Sept. 28.

Bassett announced the changes Tuesday,  calling it a need to “redeploy staff temporarily” because of shortages.

Services affected include outpatient laboratory draws, which are now by appointment only. Cooperstown Convenient Care has been forced to close and wait times for phone calls will take longer than usual, according to a media release from Bassett Healthcare.

Protesters decry mandates in Cooperstown, Oneonta
An unidentified protester demonstrates against vaccination mandates at Bassett Healthcare
Network in Cooperstown on Tuesday, Sept. 21. (Kevin Limiti/AllOtsego.com)

Protesters decry mandates in Cooperstown, Oneonta

By KEVIN LIMITI • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Anti-mask and anti-vaccine protesters staged two rallies in Otsego County in the past week, bringing their message to Bassett Healthcare and others.

Hundreds of protesters, along with Assemblyman John Salka, R-Brookfield, marched to A.O. Fox Hospital and through Main Street in Oneonta on Friday, Sept. 17.

Protesters also marched Tuesday, Sept. 21, in Cooperstown, from the Otsego County Courthouse to Bassett Medical Center.

Healthcare groups take different vax views

Healthcare groups take different vax views

Despite court stay, Bassett to require employees to comply; Cooperstown Center asks state to reconsider

By KEVIN LIMITI • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Healthcare groups in Otsego County are dealing with the state’s vaccine mandate for healthcare workers and the need to keep their facilities staffed.

Bassett Healthcare Network, one of the largest employers in the area, is determined to vaccinate its entire workforce in spite of backlash and the potential loss of employees.

Bassett has made some progress on the vaccine front. According to an internal email penned by Bassett Healthcare CEO Dr. Tommy Ibrahim, vaccinations of its employees are at 90%. About two weeks ago, the vaccination rate was only 75%, according to Bassett officials.

Protesters against vaccine mandate march to A.O. Fox Hospital in Oneonta
Anti-vaccine protesters leaving Neahwa Park in Oneonta on Friday, Sept. 17. (Kevin Limit/AllOtsego).

Protesters against vaccine mandate march to A.O. Fox Hospital in Oneonta

By KEVIN LIMITI • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

ONEONTA — Hundreds of protesters, along with Assemblyman John Salka, R-Brookfield, marched to A.O. Fox Hospital and through Main Street Friday, Sept. 17, to protest the vaccine mandate put in place for healthcare workers.

The protesters chanted slogans such as “stop the mandate” as they walked through downtown Oneonta towards the hospital. There were signs that said “unmask our children” and “protect our liberties.”

The vaccine mandate from Bassett Healthcare was in response to Gov. Kathy Hochul’s mandate that all healthcare workers should be vaccinated.

Prior to the march, the protesters rallied at Damaschke Field.

“I’m here to support the medical professionals and support their right to not have an injection they’re not confident,” Salka told AllOtsego.com. “Last year they were heroes, this year they’re zeroes.”

Bassett Healthcare has Sept. 27 deadline for employees to be vaccinated

Bassett Healthcare has Sept. 27,
deadline for employees to be vaccinated

By KEVIN LIMITI • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

COOPERSTOWN — In response to the state government mandating vaccinations for all healthcare workers, Bassett Healthcare has given its employees a deadline of Monday, Sept. 27, in order to have the first dose of the vaccine.

The mandate does not offer room for religious exemption but it does allow medical exemptions.

An internal email, penned by Dr. Tommy Ibrahim, CEO of Bassett Healthcare, said if employees are not vaccinated by Sept. 27, “you will no longer meet the regulatory requirements to be employed by Bassett Healthcare Network.”

Healthcare workers must now get COVID vaccine

Healthcare workers must now get COVID vaccine

Staff Report • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

All healthcare workers in New York State will now be required to get the COVID vaccine with the first dose being received no later than Monday, Sept. 27.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced this on Tuesday, Aug. 17, and it applies to hospital workers as well as long-term care facilities such as nursing homes.

There will be limited exceptions for either religious or medical reasons.

Dr. Tommy Ibrahim at Bassett Healthcare stressed in an internal email the importance of getting the vaccine to hospital staff.

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21 Railroad Ave. Cooperstown, New York 13326 • (607) 547-6103