UC Merced’s Incoming Chancellor on the University’s Future

The UC Board of Regents announced last week that Juan Sánchez Muñoz will become UC Merced’s fourth chancellor. As a UC alum and first-generation student, he has a lot in common with the university’s student body. He currently serves as president of the University of Houston-Downtown, and was still in Texas when Valley Edition Host Kathleen Schock spoke with him about assuming leadership during a pandemic.

https://www.kvpr.org/post/uc-merceds-incoming-chancellor-universitys-future

Farming Icon and Philanthropist Makes Transformational Gift To Valley Children’s

(Madera, California) – The estate of LeRoy A. Giannini has donated nearly $9 million to Valley Children’s, in honor of LeRoy’s parents, Ruth E. and LeRoy G. Giannini. This represents the largest single estate gift in the organization’s history. “This is a truly remarkable day for Valley Children’s as we celebrate the extraordinary gift of nearly $9 million from the Giannini family,” said Todd Suntrapak, President and CEO of Valley Children’s Healthcare. “This gift is a wonderful tribute to the family’s deep Valley roots, to their lifetime of caring for children and families and to those children who we are privileged to care for at Valley Children’s today and for generations to come.”

For 124 years, the Giannini companies were farming giants in the Central Valley. LeRoy G. Giannini started farming at an early age on 20 acres. LeRoy was 16 when his father was killed in a train accident and, shortly after his high school graduation, he took over the family farming operation. Under his innovative leadership and steady, hard work, the family business grew to more than 2,000 acres of nectarines and plums, along with a processing plant in Dinuba. At one time in the late 1970s, Mr. Giannini was the largest producer of nectarines in the world. Over the years, the family also raised cattle along the Central Coast.

Mr. Giannini was as generous as he was private. Over the course of his lifetime, he made sizeable contributions to support educational and faith-based organizations in his community but his gifts were not widely publicized. Mr. Jim Burnett, longtime friend and employee of Mr. Giannini and the trustee to his estate, shared that, over the years, Mr. Giannini paid for every Little League team in Dinuba that did not have a sponsor. For his employees and their family members, he would pay for life’s unexpected emergencies, pay to send their children to college and cover funeral expenses for every employee or family member. In Mr. Burnett’s words, Mr. Giannini was a remarkably generous man who ran his business as a family.

A new outpatient center planned for construction on the Valley Children’s Hospital campus in Madera will be named in honor of the Giannini family to serve as a powerful tribute to their generosity. “We are grateful for the generosity and vision of the Giannini family and the transformational effect that their gift will have at Valley Children’s,” said Robert Saroyan, President of Valley Children’s Healthcare Foundation. “This gift is the capstone of the Giannini family’s incredible tradition of philanthropy in the Valley. Their spirit of generosity and compassion for those in need in our community will live on with the naming of the future center.”

https://www.valleychildrens.org/news/news-story?&news=238

Fresno State engineering students help make protective gear for health workers

Engineering students, faculty and alumni from Fresno State’s Lyles College of Engineering have been working up to 10 hours a day in recent weeks to design and produce personal protective equipment (PPE) for Central Valley health care workers. They plan to donate about 1,000 face shields to Community Regional Medical Center in downtown Fresno. Last week during Fresno State’s spring break, the team completed the final design and began production of the face shields — the first part of a three-phase, innovative project to support the community at a time when protective equipment is scarce for doctors, nurses and other health care providers.

https://files.constantcontact.com/2cb20f61601/682ecac7-bbb8-4d8e-80e1-8808a64214e8.pdf

Standing Tall Against the Surge-Sutter Health

California Governor Gavin Newsom recently unveiled a guide outlining when and how California may lift various coronavirus restrictions based on a set of six criteria, including hospitals’ ability to handle any potential COVID-19 patient surges. However, Newsom cautioned against moving too fast, saying “we can’t get ahead of ourselves.” While social distancing guidelines and sheltering in place orders appear to be helping flatten the curve in California, we don’t know whether recently reported holiday gatherings for Passover or Easter that were outside these guidelines, may cause spikes in COVID-19 cases.

https://www.sutterhealth.org/newsroom/standing-tall-against-the-surge

AMOR to break ground on $8M Mendota Health Center

Fresno-based nonprofit AMOR (Alliance for Medical Outreach & Relief) is hosting a groundbreaking next week for a health clinic and neighborhood resource center in Mendota. The two building, 20,000 square-foot clinic will provide youth, behavioral health and social services in addition to primary medical and dental care. It will also include a day care, public food pantry, nutrition education, specialty care, violence prevention classes, substance abuse counseling and parenting education.

https://thebusinessjournal.com/amor-to-break-ground-on-8m-mendota-health-center/

Fresno Hospital First in Central Valley to Use New Hybrid Operating Room

The healthcare industry is constantly evolving and improving and community regional medical center is the only facility in the valley with two hybrid operating rooms able to perform highly complex, advanced surgical procedures.  But, it’s the team inside the operating room that really makes the difference. We got a first-hand look at what it takes and what it means for patients. Alfredo Gomez is an interventional radiology technologist who’s worked in the hybrid operating room since 2014.  The room is a combination of a traditional operating room and an image guided interventional suite– providing all the necessary capability and personnel in one space.

https://www.yourcentralvalley.com/med-watch-today/medwatch-today-a-first-look-at-a-hybrid-or-and-its-team/

Fresno Cancer Center Earns ‘Astro’ Accreditation

The Fresno Cancer Center has received a prestigious accreditation given to less than 5% of such facilities in the U.S. The American Society for Radiation Oncology’s (ASTRO) Accreditation Program for Excellence (APEx) can take up to a year to complete and focuses on five “pillars” of patient care. These include the process of care, the radiation oncology team, safety, quality management, and patient-centered care, according to a news release. Fresno Cancer Center was one of three such facilities in the state to recently achieve APEx status, along with Rohnert Park Cancer Center and South Sacramento Cancer Center. The three centers comprise the practice of US Cancer Management Corp. (USCMC), which operates the facilities.

https://thebusinessjournal.com/health-care-roundup-fresno-cancer-center-earns-astro-accreditation/#:~:text=The%20Fresno%20Cancer%20Center%20has%20received%20a%20prestigious%20accreditation%20given,%E2%80%9Cpillars%E2%80%9D%20of%20patient%20care.

Central California Blood Center starts experimental treatment to fight COVID-19

The Central California Blood Center announced that they will be the first blood center in the United States to produce pathogen-reduced plasma from patients who have successfully recovered from the Coronavirus. The Blood Center said people who recover from the Coronavirus infection have developed antibodies to the virus that remain in the plasma portion of their blood. The experimental treatment is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to be used on an emergency basis.

https://www.yourcentralvalley.com/news/local-news/central-california-blood-center-starts-experimental-treatment-to-fight-covid-19/

Report: Visalia’s Kaweah Delta hospital generates $1 billion a year locally

Kaweah Delta medical center in Visalia does more than provide healthcare services to the region and the Central Valley — it also infuses nearly $1 billion into the local economy each year, according to a new study. Kaweah Delta makes an estimated $973 million annual economic impact and accounts for $550.4 million or 3.2 percent of Tulare County’s economy, says an economic impact analysis commissioned by the Tulare County Economic Development Corporation and prepared by Impact DataSource of Austin, Texas.

https://thesungazette.com/article/health/2020/04/01/kaweah-delta-generates-1b-in-local-economy/

Plans for Valley medical program moving closer to fruition, says Assemblyman Gray

Assembly member Adam Gray, D-Merced, this week convened the San Joaquin Valley Coalition for Medical Education at UC Merced to discuss burgeoning plans of a San Joaquin Valley medical school. The program’s plans have been on the drawing board for decades, but until recently they’ve been largely conceptual. Gray and other program proponents were recently given a boost of $15 million from Gov. Gavin Newsom, who included those funds as part of his proposed 2020-21 state budget.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/plans-for-valley-medical-program-moving-closer-to-fruition-says-assemblyman-gray/ar-BB103IYh