Nurse strives to take the fear out of surgery

October 4, 2013

Joni Cupp is Boone Hospital Center’s Employee of the Month for October 2013. Click here to nominate someone for Employee of the Month.

Coming to the hospital for a surgery creates anxiety for many patients, especially first-timers.

Fortunately, Boone Hospital Center has nurses like Joni Cupp to help make patients feel comfortable and put their fears at ease.

Joni Cupp Oct 2013 EOM“From the moment they walk in the door, if they start off having a good experience from there, you can just tell their anxiety level drops quite a bit,” Joni said.

As a registered nurse who works in Pre-Admitting Surgical Services, Joni helps guide patients through the surgery process. She compiles a medical history and tells patients and their families what to expect before, during and after surgery.

“These patients have received a lot of information from the doctors and then they come to the hospital and get a lot of information here, too. It can almost make your head spin,” Joni said. “So whatever we can do to help them feel better about what they’re coming in for is worth it.”

Joni grew up in Laddonia. After high school, she came to Columbia because she wanted to live in a larger city with more opportunities. She got a job transcribing physicians’ notes at Columbia Surgical Associates. She found that she was very interested in health care and decided to pursue a nursing degree at Central Methodist University.

While at nursing school, she started working part time at Boone Hospital and moved into her current role after graduating.

She is married to Urologist Mike Cupp, MD. They have four children between them, Cari, 19; Lauren, 18; Nathan, 18 and Mason, 17.

Away from the hospital, Joni loves taking outdoors vacations with her family. She also enjoys reading fiction.

She said the best thing about working at Boone is the people she serves alongside.

“It’s the people I work with,” she said. “We have a great group of nurses who work well together as a team.”


“Thank you so very much for your caring, dedication, professionalism and expertise”

August 12, 2013

By Karen R. Davis, MSN, RN

Karen, of Hallsville, shared this story via myBoone Health submission form. Click here to share your story.

I was scheduled to have my right knee replaced on Thursday, May 30, by Dr. Hockman. All the pre-op testing and teaching was done, Dr. Hockman and Robin his nurse were professional, personable and thorough in all my appointments in the clinic. I felt confident in their skills to do their best in replacing my knee.

IMG_1857This was going to be a life altering experience for me, to be able to walk and maneuver steps without pain was going to change my life. I was reassured by several nurses and Dr. Hockman that for this surgery “no pain, no gain” was the chant I would learn to love.

I had worked at Boone Hospital for ten years before I continued my education and began teaching nursing at Central Methodist University two years ago. I have many friends at Boone whom I have kept in contact with and knew that Boone Hospital was the place for me to have my surgery.

Arriving at the agreed upon time of 7:45 a.m. in the morning, we were treated with friendly professionalism. Even though I have been a nurse many years, taking on the role of patient was a new experience for me. I too needed the friendly reassurance that everyone knew what they were doing and explaining everything as they did their job. I was called back by Sarah, my preoperative nurse, who was wonderful and explained everything that was going to happen to me and when. My IV was started and all the questions asked and answered by the nurses and the anesthesiologist, Dr. Hockman stopped by and initialed my right knee so everyone would know which knee was the correct one. Then by 9:30 a.m. it was time to go, my husband Tom was to go to the waiting room to wait for Dr. Hockman after the surgery for the update.

To be honest, I do not remember much of the surgery, I did get some very good medication the made me feel warm and happy, I think I was a bit chatty during the surgery. I was assured that I did not give away secret codes or incriminating evidence that could get me into trouble. Nor did I talk about any money I have hidden away and just forgot about. My nurses Bonnie and Melissa were very reassuring and talked me through the whole process. Dr. Meyer, who was my anesthesiologist, made sure I was comfortable and did not feel a thing during the surgery, nor did I have a “spinal headache” afterwards as I did have when I had to have caesarian sections when I had my boys, 31 and 27 years ago. Of course Dr. Hockman and Robin were there too and worked exceptionally well to complete the surgical procedure.

Next thing I know, I’m in post anesthesia care unit where Robin checked in on me when Carissa had some concerns about the drainage from my hemovac drain. We were all reassured, the dressing was reinforced and was soon taken back to my room on the 7th floor by 1 p.m.

My husband was waiting with a beautiful bouquet of flowers. I am listing the nurses and techs that took care of me and I apologize if I forgot anyone. Cimarron and Stephanie took care of me Thursday and Saturday, Becky and Crystal took care of me days on Friday and Sheri, whom I have worked with, and another nurse but I cannot remember her name took care of me Thursday night. Jason and Gloria took care of me Friday night.

Saturday I was to be discharged after meeting the necessary goals to go home, the physical therapists, Kate and another which I did not write her name down, and I apologize, were friendly and knowledgeable to help me meet those goals.

Boone Hospital Home Care provided the nurses and physical therapists that continued to provide the necessary monitoring, encouragement, and goals to continue my recovery. Tom my nurse and Karen my physical therapist were wonderful.

Boone Therapy continued after 3 weeks of home care. Melinda, my physical therapist at Boone outpatient therapy was exceptional, her understanding, compassion and skills to “…is that as far as you can go?” managed to help me meet and exceed goals that surprised even me! Melinda made sure my exercises would be manageable after I return to work.

I had my first return appointment with Dr. Hockman and Robin last week and they were very pleased with my progress.

To say thank you just doesn’t seem enough to express the gratitude I feel for all the wonderful people who were involved in this life changing event.

For anyone I missed, I apologize I hope you understand how much of a difference you have made in my life, for the better! So, thank you so very much for your caring, dedication, professionalism and expertise. Please remember, all the things you do every day have a huge impact on the lives you touch.


Boone Hospital Center tops Consumer Reports Missouri surgery rating

July 31, 2013

Trusted national magazine Consumer Reports has issued a new rating of surgery safety performance at U.S. hospitals, with Boone Hospital Center sharing the highest score in the state.

Untitled-1Boone Hospital was one of two hospitals in the state to earn a solid red dot, the highest score awarded in Consumer Reports’ rating system. According to Consumer Reports, the ratings are based on an analysis of Medicare patient billing claims from 2009-2011. They include 27 categories of scheduled surgeries and various specific procedure types.

“At Boone Hospital Center, our patients’ safety is our utmost focus. We are continually looking at ways to enhance our surgical care and ensure we are providing the best, safest care possible,” said Randy Morrow, interim president of Boone Hospital Center. “It’s rewarding to see this focus on safe surgeries recognized by Consumer Reports. As always, we will continue to look for ways to become even better.”


From the moment patient walked into the hospital “I felt like I mattered”

April 24, 2013

By Betsy Lowenberg

Betsy, of Moulton, Iowa, shared this story via the myBooneHealth.com online submission form. Click here to share your story.

I went to see Dr. James Pitt on April 18, 2013, for a consult. He sent me right from his office to Boone for some X-rays and that is where my story started.

flowers and signEveryone in X-ray was amazing and Dr. Brummett looked at my X-ray and knew right away there was a problem.  So he did not send me on my way and make me wait to hear from Dr. Pitt. Knowing that I drove two hours for my appointment, he called Dr. Pitt right then.

I was kept and on Friday, April 19, I had surgery to repair my stomach. From the moment we walked in to that hospital Thursday, I felt like I mattered. I have seen many doctors at home and everyone told me it was nothing and there was nothing wrong. Dr. Pitt was a lifesaver.

I had my surgery and it was worse than they thought once they got in there. After I was out of the OR , according to my husband, Dr. Pitt sat and talked to my husband and my mother-in-law and answered all their questions.

My first night in the surgery floor in room S526 was terrible.  The NG tube made me so sick, but my nurse Tony and the tech assigned to me — I wish I remembered her name, it started with an A — they were wonderful. The concern and care they took with me was so wonderful. And my daytime nurse Jill was just a doll!

They made a bad situation bearable with their kindness, concern and Tony’s humor!  I cannot thank them all enough!

I was away from home and in a scary position but they made me at ease. No doubt about it, we will use Boone as much as we can, even with the two hour drive each way!


Many miles from home, visitors discover “angels” at Boone Hospital

February 8, 2013

By Gary Johnson, Ph.D.

Gary, of Rapid City, S.D., shared this story via the myBooneHealth.com online submission form. Click here to share your story.

My spouse and I from Rapid City, S.D., are visiting our son and his family here in Columbia.

My spouse suffered a leaking ascending aneurysm six days ago. Dr. Mellitt, the nursing staff and the entire Boone Hospital have performed a miracle – from the ten hour surgery to her transfer to intermediate care today.

Our two grandchildren were born in this hospital. Our son has been treated here and he recommended that we come here when my spouse suffered her attack.

As I wrote on the board in her intensive care room: MIRACLES PRACTICED HERE, CARRIED OUT BY ANGELS DISGUISED AS DOCTORS AND NURSES.

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Nurse was amazing during daughter’s surgery

November 12, 2012

By Kelly Doke

Kelly, of Linn, shared this story via email. Click here to share your story.

My 15-year-old daughter had surgery and in recovery she had a nurse by the name of La’Costa Gaines. She was amazing!

She was so attentive to Kyli and shared so much information with us. She really put our minds at ease after everything Kyli has been through the past year. In Kyli’s words, “that nurse is an inspiration.”

All staff were wonderful but La’Costa is a stand out! We cannot thank her enough for all the care she gave to Kyli and the rest of her family.

She allowed us to be with Kyli immediately after surgery and was better than what we could have asked for. She understood everything Kyli has been through and was a great education tool. A huge thank you to her!


Marshall farmer praises his “boy wonder” doctor

September 25, 2012

Kurt Bormann, MD, explains reverse shoulder surgery like there’s nothing to it.

“You put a prosthesis in the humoral shaft, you put a prosthesis in the glenoid, which is part of the scapula,” he said. “And how you do that depends on the arthritis they have or if they have a rotator cuff tear or a fracture.”

Sounds easy, right? Dr. Bormann, with Columbia Orthopeadic Group, does shoulder surgeries of all kinds about once a week.

The one he was talking about is for patients with severe rotator cuff problems who don’t have many other options. One patient who fit the bill and had the surgery is Mike Vogel.

Vogel is a 77-year-old farmer from Marshall, Mo. Father of six, grandfather of 13 and great-grandfather to one, his shoulders had taken a beating.

“I’ve been on a farm my whole life, except for my military service. That’s a lot of hard work, hay bales, feedbags, seed bags, you name it,” said Vogel. “My shoulders wore out. “

He’s had three rotator cuff surgeries, and after two on his right shoulder and one on his left, his family doctor said there was nothing else he could do.

“For a while there, we didn’t think there was anything we could do about it,” explains Vogel’s wife of 54 years, Fran. “He wasn’t a candidate for rotator cuff surgery again, so what are your choices?”

When it felt like Vogel was running out of options, his doctor introduced him to Dr. Bormann, a specialist. Read the rest of this entry »


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