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The Excellence Fund at Ochsner is an unrestricted fund that is supported entirely by the generosity of our donors. Annually, teams throughout Ochsner submit applications and a committee selects projects to receive support from the fund. These projects create opportunities for improvements and innovations in patient care that are changing and saving lives every day. Since 2013, 283 projects have been made possible by donors like you!

Mothers' Milk Bank of Louisiana

Nursing is an essential part of early childcare, with breast milk helping to promote healthy physical and cognitive development. To ensure that all babies have access to this essential resource, the Mothers’ Milk Bank of Louisiana processes, stores and distributes milk to babies in need. Since 2018, the Mothers’ Milk Bank of Louisiana at Ochsner Baptist has received over 2,600 gallons of donated milk and distributed over 1,400 gallons. Breast milk has been distributed to 70% of all NICU patients and 148 outpatients. The donor-supported fund provides resources for this vital mission and helps protect the health of infants across Louisiana.

Alton Ochsner Society and Chemo Companion program

Donations by members of the Alton Ochsner Society support the Excellence Fund. As the Alton Ochsner Society celebrates its 40th anniversary, it also celebrates the addition of its first lifetime member: Bill Kearney. Bill’s contributions to the Excellence Fund support care that falls outside what specifically dedicated funds can offer. One of the remarkable projects that draw on the Excellence Fund is the Chemotherapy Care Companion program. The program closely tracks patients undergoing chemotherapy, using questionnaires and monitors to identify and address side effects of chemotherapy treatment. While it began with a focus on high-risk patients, it soon expanded—and, with the assistance of the Excellence Fund, it expanded even further.

Diabetes patient care

Thanks to the support of our generous donors, one 2021 initiative is helping patients with diabetic foot ulcers. A pilot group received continuous glucose monitors (CGM), devices which help to promote wound healing with rapid control of blood glucose. Every 14 days, an endocrine provider reviews the CGM data and then adjusts insulin doses accordingly. With the help of their support team and cutting-edge diabetes technology, patients with chronic illness are reaching their glycemic targets—and getting the support they need.

Your support sends a strong message that no matter how grueling or uncertain things may be, our heroes are never alone. Thank you.

I Want to Support the Excellence Fund!


In 2021, donors made 59 innovative projects possible!

The Excellence Fund at Ochsner is an unrestricted fund that is supported entirely by the generosity of our donors. Annually, teams throughout Ochsner submit applications and a committee selects projects to receive support from the fund. These projects create opportunities for improvements and innovations in patient care that are changing and saving lives every day. Since 2013, 283 projects have been made possible by donors like you!

Some of the winning projects for 2021 include:

The Functional Restoration Program and Chronic Pain Education project is for adults of all ages and abilities with one thing in common: they’re here to get back what pain has taken from them. The program includes physical therapy and occupational therapy sessions; educational classes on pain management, nutrition, relaxation and mindfulness techniques; as well as personalized counseling and group therapy sessions. The funds will be used to purchase an x-frame table and upright postural trainers to improve the effectiveness of our interventions.

The NicView project will give parents the opportunity to see their babies via live streaming video with the NicView camera system. The live streaming video has a secure password-protected system and may be viewed on any web-enabled device. This technology has been designed for use in Neonatal Intensive Care Units to enhance the parent-infant bonding experience and Family-Centered Care even when the parents cannot be at the baby’s bedside.​

In partnership with Southern University, Geauxing Mobile will provide mobile health outreach services to medically underserved and vulnerable populations in the Greater Baton Rouge area, including inner-city and rural communities. Focusing on health promotion, disease prevention, health education and early detection screenings, the objectives of this project will address the lack of access to health and preventative services for vulnerable and medically underserved populations.

Because of our partnership with Acadian Ambulance, Flight Care has the ability to simultaneously operate out of two helicopters. We assisted in evacuating 3 hospitals in Lake Charles during Hurricane Laura and had to transport several neonates to New Orleans via ground ambulance. These were patients that could have been flown in a helicopter if we had the ability to configure the second for babies. The Flight Care Neonatal Transport Initiative will allow us to provide this care for our babies in the future.

​The Aging in Place: Dementia Care project will assist our memory care management team in providing resources for caregivers to patients with dementia so they can age in place with safety and ease. This project will allow us to purchase items such as tile trackers, nest security cameras, ring door alarms and security, and Amazon Alexa devices.

Additional 2021 winners are:

  • Collecting 3D Anatomical Images for Neurosurgical Training using a Handheld Scanner
  • "Eye See You"
  • Advanced Bipolar for Robotics
  • Advanced Continuous Intracranial Pressure and Temperature Monitoring for Management of Traumatic Brain Injuries
  • Advanced Techniques in Minimally Invasive Cerebral Hemorrhage Evacuation
  • Anesthesia Transport Ventilators
  • Baptist Infusion Vascular Access Project
  • Bariatric Exam Beds
  • Bariatric Protein Care Package
  • Baton Rouge Pain Management Optimization
  • Blood Glucose Optimization using a Continuous Glucose Monitor in Patients with Diabetic Foot Ulcers
  • Bravo
  • Connectome Analysis of Patients with Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus and the Effects of Treatment
  • Cornea- The Window to the Eye
  • ED Sanctuary for Victims of Sexual Assault
  • Emergency Department Procedure Carts
  • Enabling Safe Sleep Practices and Enhanced Bonding During Implementation of Breastfeeding Initiatives
  • EndoFlip for the OR
  • Expanding Therapeutic Options for Children and Adults with Inflammatory Bowel Disease: a Cross-Campus, Cross-Discipline Proposal for Training in Nutrition Therapy for IBD
  • FEES - Improving Access to Swallowing Diagnostics
  • Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluation of Swallowing (FEES) Program
  • GaitBetter: Improving Gait Training in Patients after Neurologic Insult
  • Handheld 3D Scanner for Surgical Planning and Rapid Prototyping
  • Healthy Mother's Deliver Healthy Babies
  • Hospital Communication Boards
  • Improved Detection and Differential Diagnosis of hypoglycemia in outpatient Clinical practice.
  • Improving Lower Extremity Rehabilitation Outcomes with the Alter G Anti-Gravity Treadmill
  • Integrated Microscope Video
  • Keeping Our Pediatric Cancer Patients Safe and On Track
  • Making the Journey Better for our Psychiatric Patients
  • Measurement of Nasal Nitric Oxide Concentration to Diagnose Primary Ciliary Dyskinesia
  • Medbridge Rehab Professional and Patient Engagement Solution
  • Memory Clinic Research and Statistical Support
  • Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Evacuation of Intracerebral Hemorrhage
  • OB Pre Registration Patient Outreach Videos
  • Ochsner Baptist Enhanced Teletriage Experience
  • Ochsner Sports Medicine: Injury Prevention Program
  • P.O.P.P. (Patient Optimization Perioperative Program) Clinic
  • Pain Management Ultrasound
  • Pediatric Stander
  • Peripheral Arterial Disease Rehab
  • Piloting a Brief Evidence-Based Psychotherapy Clinic
  • Platform for Assessment and Interpretation of Modified Barium Swallow Studies to Improve Dysphagia Diagnostics and Treatment Plan Establishment
  • POCUS for Department of Nephrology
  • Protecting our Patient's Face in Surgery
  • Pulmonary Disease Management Patient Maintenance Device Program
  • Rehabilitative Ultrasound Units for Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy Clinics
  • Social Determinants of Health - Point of Service Screening
  • Surgical Services Patient Experience Enhancement
  • Transportation Project Car Seats
  • Vein Finder for chemotherapy infusion to improve patient care
  • Venipuncture center for Immunocompromised Patients
  • Vitals
  • West Bank Staff Well-Being - Centralized Relaxation Area


In 2020, donors made 46 innovative projects possible!

Essential hypertension is the most common cardiometabolic clinical risk surrogate in general outpatient clinical medicine. The importance of detection, management and control of hypertension is very well established as central to optimal cardiometabolic risk reduction both as regards morbidity and mortality. The availability of the digital medicine home ambulatory blood pressure monitoring program has improved the availability of real time data to better inform decision making for blood pressure control but still fails to provide a continuous 24 hour profile of the blood pressure spread for patients especially with resistant hypertension and those with the so called “white coat effect”. CAMBP monitors along with various cuff sizes and other related accessories will make this available as a resource to the outpatient Endocrinology and primary care clinics at the North Shore Health, Slidell Health Center.

The Advanced Emergency Vascular access project will allow the emergency response team to quickly place difficult IVs safely and expeditiously during patient emergencies. The excellence fund grant will cover the cost of one portable ultrasound device for the team and a small amount of training.​ The need is to provide secure IV access for patient's experiencing an emergency event. Early interventions such as fluids, antibiotics and vasopressors can save lives and reduce morbidity. Using ultrasound can be used for other emergency examinations and to reduce the amount of sticks needed for patients, perhaps even reduction in central lines, which could reduce central line associated blood stream infections. (CLABSI)​

The Advancing Excellence in the Peri-Operative Period project focuses on purchasing innovative pocket-sized ultrasound technology from General Electric. Few technologies have had a more disruptive impact on the daily practice of anesthesiology than the application of ultrasound during the peri-operative period. It has become an integral part of both anesthesia training and patient care. Having a number of cost efficient small portable ultrasounds available to our anesthesiologist would improve our departments ability to provide safe and effective patient care.

This program will establish a partnership between Ochsner and faith based organizations in key service areas where we plan to open community health centers and affiliated Ochsner hospitals to offer a comprehensive Ochsner Health Faith based Community outreach impact innovation program to reduce health care disparities and improve health outcomes for at risk communities that Ochsner serves. These organizations have established health ministries with whom we will collaborate to improve access to care, preventive and health literacy education. We will provide information, resources and host virtual platforms to address community needs related to the COVID 19 pandemic. Our long term goal is to establish this program as part of our strategic Ochsner Global Health is Local Health initiative on Diversity Inclusion and Equity. A comprehensive community impact faith based health promotion program is a potentially very cost effective way to improve health outcomes if high risk groups like African Americans who have been disproportionately impacted by COVID 19.

This project will cover an ultrasound machine that will be used in the Pain Management Procedure Area. Some of the procedures performed are ultrasound guided to avoid inserting the needle atrial. This project will prevent delaying patient care. Our patients receive a great percentage of relief from the procedures our doctors perform. The ultrasound machine will also allow us to schedule more procedures that require this guidance.

The Office of Professional Well-Being will use funds to send its staff and affiliated instructors to attend the Johnson and Johnson Human Performance Institute "Resiliency Train-The-Trainer" course to bring the content back to Ochsner Health for dissemination across our workforce. Personal and organizational resilience—the acquired ability to recover, adapt, and grow from stress—is essential now more than ever as Ochsner Health and its nearly 26,000 employees navigate COVID-19 in an already complex and challenging industry. No courses to support workforce resiliency currently exist in the Ochsner system. The Office of Professional Well-Being plans to offer the course to up to 100 participants throughout 2020.

Chemotherapy Care Companion is a new program that is currently being offered to Ochsner’s early phase clinical trial research patients and high-risk chemotherapy patients. The program is used to closely monitor patients who are undergoing chemotherapy through questionnaires and monitoring of vital signs in order to provide early intervention to side effects potentially caused by receiving chemotherapy. This grant will be used to expand this project to all active chemotherapy patients.

The Chronic Pain Education and Care Coordination funding would be allocated to purchase an exam bed and therapy bed for a newly renovated exam room in the new FRP gym for patients to receive chronic pain education and care coordination. If appropriate, prospective patients would be receiving individual services from various team members from the FRP team or through their respective service line colleagues within the system. The grant will build the program for patients not appropriate for the Functional Restoration Program but will still need care coordination and chronic pain education for chronic pain patients seeking services.

The goal of the Colonoscopy Consent project is to develop and produce a 60-90 second animated video for colonoscopy consent and then evaluate efficacy of process and patient acceptance. We do over 5000 colonoscopies per year at Ochsner Medical Center alone - this is a repetitive process that can be standardized. Funding will cover time for development and production of "explainer video" plus evaluation time will go into next year. Video consent allows for standardization of consent processes which can be done at a level all patients can understand and at a time that is convenient for the patient and provider. This can improve the patient experience and quality of consent while at the same time being more efficient and decreasing provider work load.

Hospital Acquired Pressure Injuries (HAPI) are an ongoing nationwide problem that negatively affects patients, hospital quality metrics, finances and employee morale. Despite our current efforts that include skin assessments for all patients, 2-Hour turning protocols, special support surfaces and HAPI bundles implementation for high risk patients, we continue to see HAPIs. New Innovative technology from Smith & Nephew, Inc. ( utilizes a wireless wearable sensor to electronically measure patient position, movement and activity to automate a patients turn protocol and remotely alert staff when and where care is necessary to remain compliant with turning and repositioning schedules. By implementing the use of the Leaf System, we expect to see a significant drop in pressure injuries to patients.

Through the purchase of the KRS-800S, we will be able to provide more robust testing using one piece of equipment. We will not only be able to better evaluate these cataract surgery candidates with more accurate measurements, but also serve our non-verbal and special needs patient population. Whether its a better pair of glasses or need for surgical intervention, we will have better diagnostics to advise the patient and their family just from the measurements taken with the Topcon KR-800S, not to mention the efficiency and ease of use.

At the direction of the Ochsner Sports Medicine Institute’s section head Dr. Deryk Jones, along with our primary care sports medicine physician Dr. David Leslie it has been decided to move forward with the Ochsner athletic trainers to provide the gold standard of care when responding to heat related illness at the contracted schools. This standard requires the athletic trainers to use rectal thermometers to identify core temperature of athletes when they collapse during athletic activity. It is also gold standard to cool the athlete first before transporting the athlete to the hospital. We have 50 athletic trainers providing services to the athletes in the greater New Orleans region. We want to ensure when providing emergency care to the athletes we have the equipment necessary to make the most informed treatment decisions, and save their lives.

Funding will provide for an upgrade from EndoFlip I to EndoFlip II. EndoFlip I measures the distensibility of the lower esophageal sphincter. This diagnostic test provides information to identify esophageal outlet obstruction. EndoFlip II is the latest technology which measures distensibility and also displays a high resolution topography image of esophageal peristalsis which can be used to determine esophageal disorder classification (Typr I, Type II, Type III). The EndoFlip II esophageal peristalsis topography image provides information needed to classify esophageal peristalsis and can replace manometry. This allows patients to avoid the discomfort of traditional manometry.

The new GSI AudioStar Pro audiometer continues the tradition of excellence in clinical audiometry. It will enhance our facility's testing and reporting needs by adding efficiency and consistency, ultimately resulting in greater access and improved patient and employee satisfaction. With the acquisition of these new audiometers, we are confident that we will meet the medical needs of the present as well as the future by servicing our patients fully in the years to come.

Point of care ultrasound (POCUS) is a common tool utilized at OMC-Jeff Highway to enhance the safety of common procedures. Decreasing time to diagnosis will allow for quicker time to treatment and shorter hospital stays ultimately.

We have been honored with the privilege to be the treating center of choice for many women in the Southeast Louisiana region dealing with the devastating ​and impactful diagnosis of breast cancer. Currently, Ochsner Baptist sees a significant number of breast cancer specimens sent for pathologic analysis. Funds for this project will be used to purchase of a refurbished Kubtec cabinet x-ray system (Kubtec XPERT 40 Specimen X-ray, purchased through Integrity Medical Systems) to be stored on-site in the Department of Pathology at Ochsner Baptist. Having the ability to rapidly assess tissues will allow us to give the highest quality reporting to our patients in the fastest method possible.

Flight Care has been established as a National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians training site. This allows the department to teach classes such as PreHospital Trauma Life Support (PHTLS), Advanced Medical Life Support (AMLS), and Emergency Pediatric Care (EPC). Flight Care also collaborates with Ochsner's Nursing Professional Development to offer American Heart Classes such as Basic Life Support (BLS), Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS), and Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS). This project would allow us to attend training and purchase materials to continue our offerings.

The GaitUp Go tool will allow our physical therapists to asses balance and other motor functions in a quantitative way. These sensors take measurements while the patient completes a physical therapy assessment and creates clear graphs of measurements taken. Often, patients who need rehab after a neurological insult need multiple ways to track their progress and to understand their deficits. This project would allow us to use these sensors at 5 sites across the system that offer neuro rehabilitation.

The aims of this project are to create a biobank to characterize Parkinson’s disease in African Americans, perform genetic screening of monogenic PD within the African American population and Identify new causative or modifying genes within the African American population. Establishing a bio-bank and our clinical database will allow us to identify and compare disparities between patient populations, and furthermore identify struggles unique to our subgroups.

These funds will provide handheld ultrasound devices for patient centered training, education and research. This will facilitate diagnosis of Neurologic disorders such as Myopathy, Neuropathy, Neuromuscular Junction Disorders, etc. and provide guidance for Neurologic procedures such as Nerve Blocks and Lumbar Puncture.

The Health Education Video project will create accessible health education to the community about prevalent issues such as hypertension, diabetes, women's wellness, and food and fitness through engaging web pages containing video, articles, diets, and more. We believe delivering education in this way will be far more accessible to the community because it will be digital and more importantly it will be available on their phone.

The Infant Driven Feeding Program would provide evidence-based online education to all staff involved in feeding infants, with a focus to improve quality oral feeding experiences for all infants and families. Implementation of an interdisciplinary group of feeding champions, as well as these online modules, would promote more positive, safer experiences for the infants and families, facilitate a positive change in our NICU feeding culture, and provide consistency in feeding practices based on evidenced-based decision-making.

In the evaluation of patients with stereotypical clinical events including episodes of loss of awareness, loss of consciousness, falls, and abnormal movements, multiday continuous electroencephalography (EEG) is a valuable diagnostic tool. In addition, this testing modality is essential in characterizing seizures and type of epilepsy. The excellence funds are intended to purchase the Xltek® Trex™ HD Video Ambulatory System. This ambulatory recording system can provide in-home multiday continuous video electroencephalography (EEG) data for our patients.

We would like to create an accredited psychology internship program to train future psychologists, to allow for greater bandwidth of mental health services provision, to create a pipeline of staff psychologists from which to recruit when there are open positions at Ochsner, and to provide a much needed innovative program to the region. This funding would allow us to seek consultation support as we work to develop an internship at Ochsner.

The Moveo XP device is a weight bearing exercise platform for patients who need full body weight support to be able to exercise and participate in the rehabilitation process. This platform is ideal for patients with conditions such as: lower extremity weaknesses, poor postural control, poor muscle control, and decreased lower extremity range of motion. The Moveo XP would enable safer, earlier mobilization of patients within the ICU environment by nurses, therapists, etc.

The Integrating Acupuncture into Traditional Back Care project will provide a certification in acupuncture as an adjunct treatment for back pain. Acupuncture has several other uses outside of back pain such as: dysmenorrhea, allergic rhinitis, headaches, depression, morning sickness, nausea and vomiting, post op pain, facial pain to name a few. Acupuncture gives patients a non-pharmacologic option to treat their pain and serves a community need.

The interdepartmental phlebotomy training program will purchase supplies including six phlebotomy simulation arms and badge buddies to perform phlebotomy training classes.

A PacerMan simulator would be acquired from SimuLab to allow training of physicians in the placement of trans venous pacemakers. This would promote patient safety by practicing best technique before moving on to actual patients.

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) currently affects an estimated 50 million people worldwide, a number that is expected to more than triple in the next 30 years. At particular risk are low-income communities and communities of color, all of whom tend to have higher rates of AD risk factors and simultaneously face substantial barriers to accessing care. The Machine Learning: Innovation in Dementia Diagnosis and Care project will allow clinicians to more closely monitor high risk patients and their families to provide timely support and interventions. Long term, our goal is to build an algorithm that can be validated and embedded in the electronic medical record (EMR) to automatically notify physicians when a patient is determined by the algorithm to have a high risk of developing dementia in the future.

This project will purchase licenses for an application Torsh Talent to assist with conducting developmental assessments via telehealth for children suspected of Autism and related disorders. Families requesting a developmental evaluation who are unable to come to the Boh Center will be able to upload videos of their children engaging in specific behaviors to this platform for scoring by a physician. This methodology allows for families to continue to receive diagnostic evaluations remotely during this critical period of development.

The Storz CMAC is an innovative airway system to assist with neonatal intubations. The Storz system uses video technology, which is expected to offer significantly more durability and fewer repairs. In addition, the system has other attachments which can be used for intubating children and adults of all sizes. We plan to use these components for routine intubations in which, as mentioned above, we could use the video screen to teach residents how to obtain the best views for intubating.

The Ochsner Neonatology APP fellowship is a structured one-year post graduate training program for Physician Assistants (PAs) designed to provide advanced training in both didactic education, clinical skills, and procedural skills for APPs entering the NICU. The APP Fellowship will provide APP fellows with the advanced knowledge, skills, and professional experience in neonatology that will distinguish them from non-specialty trained APPs.

It is estimated that more than 40% of new graduates make medication errors and 50% of novice RNs are missing signs of patient decline. Ochsner's Transition-to-Practice frontloads those critical skills necessary for safe practice and emphasizes, from their first day, patient scenarios that focus on patient decline and how to decide whether to "Monitor, Act, or Rescue". Skills practice and an increase in patient decline recognition increases the new graduate's confidence, which will positively impact patient safety and outcomes.

O2 Productions is an internal volunteer workgroup within Ochsner's IS department. Our group was founded in 2019, with the goal of providing value to both our patients and internal users by creating and delivering strategic video resource content. During the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the group responded to the increased technical support needs, in addition to the rising number of calls into our support line, for helping patients conduct Virtual Visits by creating a follow along video. This funding would purchase the professional-level video production equipment needed in order to make higher quality video content and provide multiple forms of content for both our patients and internal technology users.

The Pediatric Tracheostomy Processing project would examine the use of 3 processing methods to clean pediatric tracheostomy tubes. The tubes removed from pediatric patients would be examined and cultured after removal and again after they are processed via boiling, bottle steamer and via UV light cleaner. The main goal of this project is to determine if sterilization of the tracheostomy tube is possible.

To better serve the Labor and Delivery population, we are requesting a portable bedside ultrasound to provide immediate care and diagnosis of patients when emergencies occur. We will be able to make quick assessments to determine the patient's plan of care. Being able to make these determinations could be the difference between life or death for our tiniest patients. This would be an enormous patient satisfier, provider satisfier, as well as an employee satisfier. We will use the funds granted to purchase a new portable bedside ultrasound machine to use by providers for quick assessments necessary to determine plan of care.

The Prevention of Acoustic Pollution in our Neonatal and Maternal environments project will implement the preventive health measure of noise reduction through sound masking to decrease the negative effects that high-level noise has on our maternity, gynecology, newborn and NICU patients as well as healthcare flux. This system will also promote compassion by promoting a healthy environment which improves healing with the installation DynaSound Pro Sound masking devices.

Health literacy is the foundation of health care delivery and can be augmented by using technology. The Ochsner Neurosciences Medical 3D Lab (M3D lab) has enhanced adoption and expanded the utility of 3D printing, virtual (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in our healthcare system via clinician and patient engagement. The lab has demonstrated the benefits of 3D printing and XR in medical training, personalized intervention planning, as well as in patient engagement and education. The lab can benefit greatly from holographic display that can show models with stereoscopy without HMDs. We believe we can adapt such a display to provide an agile, easy, and safe visualization tool to improve patients’ understanding and engagement in their health. The funds will support the acquisition of an Enterprise Level Holographic Display that does not require a head-mounted display.

Rehabilitative ultrasound imaging (RUSI) is emerging as a cutting-edge tool for treating patients with pelvic floor dysfunction in the physical therapy setting. RUSI is a model specifically designed for clinical use by physical therapists for the purpose of evaluating muscles, ligaments, and relevant organ structures. This grant will allow for the purchase of three units to be housed at three Ochsner clinics that have pelvic floor programs: Veterans, Tchoupitoulas, and Baptist Ochsner Therapy and Wellness.

The Surgical Retina Teaching Tools Project will utilize a 4K ultra-high definition surgical video recording system and display to create a library of cases to review with the fellows and residents. Surgical videos are an invaluable teaching tool that can fast track a fellows progression to competency and set the stage for mastery. The high quality videos will be presented at conferences and will allow us to grow the reputation of the Vitreoretinal Surgery Department & Fellowship at Ochsner with the goal of attracting the best candidates.

The Synchrony V4.0 is an innovative device which combines electrical muscle stimulation with exercises and biofeedback for patients undergoing dysphagia rehabilitation. This evidence-based technology allows the patient to visualize the efficacy and intensity of exercises targeting distinct musculature typically difficult to measure with conventional observations. The engagement of neuromuscular re-education principles will aid the treatment of complex dysphagia.

The Ochsner MedVantage Network Innovation (OMNI) Project will purchase smart tablets for high-risk patients with low-telehealth literacy for use with the MyOchsner application. At a time when required physical distancing has fortified preexisting barriers to care and healthcare disparities, delivery of telehealth services targeted to complex populations at highest risk of poor outcomes with COVID-19 is a solution that we are seeking to expand. The Ochsner iO and IS teams have collaborated on a simplified version of the MyOchsner portal login and device accessibility that will accommodate low telehealth literacy and secure the tablet to a healthcare-only usability mode.

Trauma Nursing Core Course (TNCC) was developed by the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA), to prepare nurses with the knowledge, critical thinking skills and hands-on training needed to provide high-quality, trauma nursing care. After completing this course, the attendee will be able to properly assess and implement evidence-based interventions to improve outcomes for our patients. The funds obtained from the grant will provide the equipment and training for Emergency Department nurses and develop TNCC instructors across the system. The goal is to train 12 instructors with this grant and begin offering this course on a standard schedule.

Pre-operative nutritional support has been recognized as a cost-effective way of decreasing post-operative morbidity and healthcare costs. We are requesting funds to purchase Immunonutrition (IMN) formula to help decrease post-operative complications and improve quality of life in patients with Neuroendocrine Tumors (NETs). Our patient population is particularly vulnerable to disease related malnutrition, longer hospital length of stay, and higher than average perioperative complications. Our objective is to use support from the Excellence Fund to purchase IMN (IMPACT®, Nestle HealthScience) and provide it to all NET surgical candidates as part of our clinic’s initiative to give patients the best chance at recovery with good quality of life.

In an effort to educate patients, we propose to use point of care microscopic examination of synovial fluid from patients with acute attacks of gout. With a digital camera and monitor attached to the microscope we will be able to show patients the gouty crystals that are causing their joint pain while the patient is in the office. With this immediate, visual confirmation, we anticipate better patient engagement and adherence to the long-term treatment program needed to appropriately prevent future attacks.

The Voice Center Video Networking and Interventional Endoscope Project will provide a second interventional video-endoscope to extend our care to more patients, improve clinic workflow, and ensure best practices are being utilized in terms of high-level disinfection and equipment turnover—especially in light of the current pandemic scenario. Funding will cover the installation/configuration networking piece (EndoServer) as well as the install/configuration including a necessary Windows 10 upgrade/install and a video-endoscope.


In 2019, donors made 32 innovative projects possible!

Research shows that biofeedback, alone and in combination with other behavioral therapies, is effective in treating multiple medical and psychological disorders in children and adolescents, particularly anxiety disorders and chronic pain. This project will help deliver evidence-based psychophysiological treatment to children and teenagers with chronic pain and anxiety.

The medical implementation of motion capture is used in gait analysis, measurement of functional status, extremity kinematic motion analysis, and as objective measurements for patients undergoing rehabilitation. By better understanding these biomechanics, corresponding clinical management plans can be implemented.

Through the Cancer Prevention Clinic, we hope to standardize screening protocols for all cancer tests and implement a system of providing screening recommendations to primary care providers. We will also examine the role of genetics and increase outreach.

Capnography equipment, which is used for mechanically ventilated and spontaneously breathing patients, helps gauge effectiveness of resuscitation, indicates of ROSC during chest compression, alerts to titrating end-tidal carbon dioxide levels in patients with suspected increases in intracranial pressure, determines adequacy of ventilation and provides prognostic indicators in patients with sepsis or shock. We want the best for our patients and this equipment will help provide that.

Cerebral small vessel disease is one of the most common causes of dementia and falls in the elderly and many of the risk factors that contribute to this can be preventable if we can identify the disease and focus on reducing the risk factors that lead to its progression. With hypertension being central to many of these disease processes, we hope to enroll patients in digital hypertension monitoring or a similar program where we can address this risk factor among others that we can identify within each patient.

CodeNet is an automated clinical data capture and documentation system that automatically and accurately documents emergency events. By learning from this data, we can decrease variability, improve adherence to best practices and save lives through technology and clinical expertise.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy ("DBT") is a program designed to help vulnerable clients learn new and engaging skills. Our goal is to help those clients identified as high risk for ER visits and psychiatric hospitalizations through this therapy, allowing them to move forward with their lives in a healthy and productive way.

Through a digital fitness and wellness platform we will distribute personalized fitness, nutrition and wellness plans that are customized to the patient's individual needs and wants. Ochsner physicians, therapists, fitness professionals, health coaches, and RD will work cohesively to prescribe exercise, diet and wellness plans in a live streaming or downloadable way over the course of the patient's wellness journey.

Research shows that up to 50% of acute and critically ill patients meet diagnostic criteria for malnutrition, yet only 5-7% of patients are diagnosed. By documenting malnutrition in a more robust and accurate way, we hope to improve quality outcomes and reduce costs while better serving patients.

Data shows that an effective means of preventing unplanned cesarean delivery is to wait for active labor before admission to the labor suite. Women in early labor are often in substantial discomfort and are reluctant to return home. By providing an early labor lounge at Ochsner Baptist, we will give these women a safe place to wait. The soothing space will encourage mobility and support. Room dividers will enable privacy, but the open layout will promote collaboration among laboring partners. Educational materials will increase awareness and decrease the anxiety of early labor. Our goal is to prevent the major health event of unexpected cesarean delivery and its impact on rates of pain, breastfeeding difficulties and depressed mood.

The aim of this project is to create an educational video for patients at increased risk of breast cancer. The information in the video will educate patients about the options available for women at high risk, therefore enabling them to decide if the High-Risk Screening Clinic is right for them.

The addition of a reliable FEES (fiberoptic endoscopic evaluation of swallowing) service in our speech pathology department will provide a new, cutting edge service to patients and their families. This system will allow us to perform the study in our treatment rooms which will reduce interruption of patient care, improve patient access, and allow us to address problems better and sooner.

The maintenance of patient mobility during long hospital stays improves their overall outcomes. Patients are more likely to have shorter hospital stays, more likely to be discharged to home rather than a rehabilitation facility and less likely to have treatment related morbidity. This project plans to purchase and place 16 stationary bikes in the bone marrow transplant unit.

By purchasing a portable ultrasound and placing all intravenous access lines in the pre-operative area, we will reduce anesthesia time in the operating room. This will reduce patient wait times and discomfort.

Through the MedVantage Clinic, a research coordinator will support current clinical staff and move forward ongoing research studies that demonstrate improved health outcomes and increased appropriate utilization of medical services in high-risk and geriatric patients when social determinants are addressed in a primary care setting.

This NASHNET FibroScan study will allow us to easily screen patients using a special ultrasound technique that is non-invasive, fast and relatively inexpensive to estimate the degree of liver scarring. Using this equipment, the screening can be done in the clinic with limited preparation and can replace a liver biopsy, an invasive and expensive procedure. This will allow us to provide early intervention and prevent long term complications associated with chronic liver disease. The data collected from this study will be used to establish an evidence-based clinical practice model for the early identification of patients with progressive NAFLD.

Premature babies are frequently being fed before they are neurologically or gestationally ready. Lack of feeding acquisition can prolong hospital stays and create a lifetime of oral feeding and swallowing issues. The Ntrainer system is a device for preterm, critically ill and neurologically impaired infants that can be used to help shape and train a more normal oral motor, swallowing and breathing pattern.

Lack of mobility is a large concern for inpatient and post-discharge complications. This grant will allow for the purchase of one adult MobiGo and two Mobikidz IV pole units. These units will provide safe, early and standard mobilizations for patients on the pediatric ICU floors at Jefferson Highway.

The InBody 570 will allow the analysis of a person's body by determining the percentage of fat, muscle and water. By assessing the balance between muscle and fat composition, the provider can better determine the right nutrition and exercise plan for the patient to prevent loss of muscle and improve or maintain functional status.

Project Core’s Universal Core Communication Systems provide programming to print 3D symbols that can assist in the daily functional communication for individuals who do not respond to traditional high/low tech communication systems. The 18 symbols are 3D and color/texture coded by part of speech and allow any communication partner to interpret requests/comments correctly.

Infections of the cornea, tumors of the ocular surface, and degenerative anterior segment diseases all need detailed clinical follow up to evaluate response to treatment or disease progression. The ION slit lamp camera system allows photographic documentation in a seamless and instantaneous fashion.

The echocardiography project aims to reduce the number of patients that undergo a second stress test or angiogram by modifying the tests to reduce false positives.

A pediatric eye camera can detect risk factors in children that may lead to partial or full blindness or issues with child development or social behaviors. This project will provide this equipment to four Ochsner locations, the Grove, Prairieville, O’Neal and Zachary.

Parents may not be aware of their child's reduced visual functioning. Routine vision screening and/or eye examinations are critical to detect problems before the child’s eye development declines. A pediatric vision screener is the safest, easiest tool to use to detect vision problems in school age children or younger. This project will provide this equipment in Covington.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends vision screening at least once between 3 and 5 years. Together, vision screening and eye examinations are complementary and essential elements of a strong public health approach to vision and eye health. Funding will allow for the purchase of a vision screener with case for Slidell.

Using new technology, patients can be diagnosed with swallowing disorders while they are still "healthy" and can have their symptoms managed to preserve a highly functioning lifestyle. This cutting edge technology helps diagnose early motility issues within the esophagus that when left untreated can lead to esophageal cancer.

This project will provide in-home diagnostic devices to Ochsner Home Health and Home Health Partners on the Northshore. Home Health workers will be able to collect medical information with these diagnostic devices that can be transmitted to the physician. A virtual visit can be performed and recommendations made. Thus allowing the homebound patient to potentially avoid a clinic visit or ED visit.

Project ADAM is a partnership with local schools to implement heart safe schools. Project ADAM has been implemented in over 10 states and has saved 150 lives. Louisiana does not currently have a Project ADAM affiliate. By partnering with schools, we can help prevent sudden cardiac death.

Sensory Calm Down Kits will help neurologically diverse children relax while also allowing medical staff to obtain vitals and perform examinations. It will also give parents tools and resources that can be used prior to appointments so that we can more easily connect with our patient and reduce their fear or anxiety.

Infants with single ventricle congenital heart disease require staged palliative cardiac surgeries over the first several years of life. One of the major interventions of the National Pediatric Cardiology Quality Improvement Collaborative to improve quality of care for these infants is aggressive monitoring between stages. This project will allow for electronic monitoring with automated, real-time reporting for these high-risk infants.

Dysphagia occurs as a result of various medical conditions and affects a large part of our patient population at Chabert. Malnutrition and dehydration, aspiration pneumonia, compromised general health, chronic lung disease, choking and even death may be a consequence of dysphagia. By acquiring the TIMS system, we will be able to better record data and provide a higher level of care for patients at risk.

Tansey Breast Center will create a video explaining the mammogram process in a less threatening, lighted hearted way that dispels all myths about the exam. Our intent is to have an on demand video that addresses misconceptions and reduces fear while encouraging patients to consider having their first mammogram.