Cardiothoracic Surgery Program at Englewood Health Receives Top Overall Quality Score from Society of Thoracic Surgeons

February 6, 2024 — The cardiothoracic surgery program at Englewood Health has achieved a three-star rating from The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) for isolated coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery.

In its 2023 public report, STS reported that less than 20 percent of participating programs nationwide received a 3-star rating. Englewood Health is among just six programs in New Jersey to achieve the highest quality rating.

The recently published data covers CABG cases from July 2020 through June 2023. In addition to the 3-star composite score, the team achieved a near perfect score (99.76) for medication use. Englewood Health performed better than the STS average score in all CABG Composite Quality Rating categories.

“We extend our congratulations to our dedicated team of cardiothoracic surgeons and practitioners, whose remarkable expertise and collaborative efforts consistently achieve the best possible outcomes for our patients,” said Adam Arnofsky, MD, chief of cardiothoracic surgery at Englewood Health. “Englewood Health’s cardiothoracic surgery team is at the forefront of healthcare, employing cutting-edge technologies and advanced surgical techniques to enhance and safeguard the lives of individuals facing heart disease.”

The STS National Database is the premier cardiothoracic surgery clinical outcomes registry. The STS helps hospitals and CT surgeons assess and benchmark their performance to improve quality, safety, and patient outcomes. Englewood Health voluntarily submits CABG surgery clinical data to the STS. The STS calculates performance scores and star ratings for isolated CABG using 3-year analytic data windows.

Englewood Health Selected as Clinical Trial Site for Expanding TAVR Applications

Trial investigates TAVR suitability in patients with moderate aortic stenosis

February 1, 2024 — As a national leader in transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) to treat aortic stenosis (AS), Englewood Health will enroll eligible patients in a new clinical trial looking at expanded use of TAVR for treating patients with less severe aortic valve disease.

Englewood Health is a clinical trial site for the EXPAND II Pivotal Trial, the first randomized clinical study evaluating the self-expanding, supra-annular Evolut™ TAVR platform in patients with moderate, symptomatic AS, a population outside of the current guidelines and indications for TAVR.

The EXPAND II Pivotal Trial will enroll patients at up to 100 sites globally, including at Englewood Health, home to one of the most experienced TAVR programs in the New York metro area.

“We are enrolling patients into this important clinical trial as part of our commitment to provide the most advanced cardiac care to our patients,” says Adam Arnofsky, MD, chief of cardiothoracic surgery at Englewood Health. “Our team continuously seeks to improve heart procedures and outcomes for patients here in New Jersey and to contribute to the global scientific body of knowledge on cardiovascular treatments.”

The Evolut TAVR platform is approved worldwide for treating severe symptomatic AS. TAVR is not currently included in the treatment guidelines for moderate AS, however data from this study may be used to support expanded indications for the Evolut TAVR platform.

“Our goal is that by participating in this clinical trial, our patients will ultimately benefit from expanded treatment options,” says Joseph De Gregorio, MD, executive director of Cardiovascular Services at Englewood Health. “Interventional cardiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons at Englewood Health are honored to be leading the potential expanded use of this minimally invasive procedure.”

“Twice as many patients have moderate stenosis of the aortic valve as those with severe stenosis,” says Ramin Hastings, MD, medical director of the Structural Heart and Valve Program at Englewood Health and an interventional cardiologist. “With the availability of TAVR, a minimally invasive treatment option that may lead to faster recoveries than traditional cardiac surgery, the question arises whether we should consider earlier intervention for aortic stenosis patients to enhance their long-term health.”

Englewood Health was one of the first hospitals in the country to begin offering TAVR following its FDA approval in 2011. To date, Englewood Health’s Structural Heart and Valve Program has performed over 1,500 TAVR procedures, with the best possible success rates and outcomes for our patients.

The Society of Thoracic Surgeons has recognized Englewood Health with a 3-star rating—the highest possible quality rating—for transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) and the hospital has achieved transcatheter valve certification from the American College of Cardiology, an honor bestowed for excellence in TAVR procedures.

Englewood Health is actively enrolling patients in the EXPAND II Pivotal Trial.

Englewood Health Appoints Liza Kind Cooper as Vice President, Strategy

Most recently strategy consultant at Bain & Company, Cooper served as chief of staff at Englewood 2015-18

January 30, 2024 — Liza Kind Cooper has joined Englewood Health as vice president for strategy. In this role, Cooper is responsible for advising, overseeing, and collaborating on strategic projects for the president and chief executive officer. She also collaborates with the senior leadership team to drive business growth and operational excellence and ensure the successful implementation and execution of key strategic initiatives.

Cooper previously served as a strategy consultant at Bain & Company in New York City, where she focused on healthcare and life sciences, advising both corporate and private equity clients.

Prior to joining Bain & Company, Cooper was the chief of staff at Englewood Health. As a member of the executive leadership team, she both served the CEO on high priority matters and helped to shape strategic initiatives and generate operational improvements across the organization. Among the initiatives she led were partnering with local organizations to collectively better serve the community, forming an environmental sustainability program, and developing a behavioral health strategic plan that focused on expanding outpatient mental health services to the community in northern New Jersey.

“Liza represents the next generation of healthcare leaders, and we are delighted to welcome her back,” said Warren Geller, president and CEO of Englewood Health. “Her healthcare business acumen, leadership skills on major projects, and commitment to the patient at the end of every decision all make her uniquely talented and effective in a strategic planning role.”

Cooper received her MBA at Columbia Business School and her bachelor’s degree at the University of Michigan.

Englewood Health Introduces Robotic-Assisted Technology to Biopsy Distant Areas of the Lungs

December 27, 2023 — Englewood Health is introducing robotic-assisted bronchoscopy, using the Ion endoluminal system from Intuitive Surgical, to improve the early diagnosis of lung cancer. This advanced technology allows doctors to perform minimally invasive biopsies in distant areas of the lungs, including small nodules in the peripheral regions.

According to research published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, seventy percent of nodules lie in the outer third of the lung. Therefore, reaching peripheral nodules is critical in order to detect lung cancers in their earliest stages, when they are most likely to respond to treatment.

“With this technology, we can access lung lesions that were previously unreachable with standard bronchoscopy techniques,” says David Shiu, DO, chief of pulmonary medicine at Englewood Health. “Robotic-assisted bronchoscopy allows for more reach, more stability, and greater precision over traditional bronchoscopy.”

“We’re entering a new era in lung cancer diagnosis and treatment with the introduction of robotic-assisted bronchoscopy,” says Christos Stavropoulos, MD, director of thoracic oncology at The Lefcourt Family Cancer Treatment and Wellness Center and chief of thoracic surgery at Englewood Health. “This technology grants us unprecedented access to peripheral lung nodules, enhancing our ability to detect and combat lung cancer in its earliest stages, ultimately giving our patients a better chance at a healthier future.”

The robotic-assisted bronchoscopy is the latest addition to Englewood Health’s armament of advanced technologies that ensure world class care is delivered close to home.

The Ion bronchoscopy platform has an ultra-thin, maneuverable catheter, with an integrated vision probe for visualization while navigating to the target, and stability that allows pulmonologists to extend their reach far into the peripheral areas of the lung. Additionally, the tool has unique shape-sensing technology that gives doctors detailed, real-time information, and greater control of the catheter position to locate and take tissue biopsies with a high degree of accuracy.

Englewood Health Named a Best Hospital for Maternity Care by U.S. News & World Report for Third Year in a Row

December 21, 2023 — Englewood Health has been named one of the best hospitals in the country for maternity care by U.S. News & World Report for the third year in a row.

In its 2024 Best Hospitals for Maternity list, U.S. News rated Englewood Health “High Performing,” its highest quality rating for maternity care.

“To be recognized as one of the best hospitals in the U.S. for maternity care is a great honor for our team,” says Arthur Gross, MD, chief of obstetrics and gynecology at Englewood Health. “Our doctors, nurses, and entire labor and delivery team strives to provide every patient with the best possible experience here at Englewood and to be named among the best hospitals is validating.”

The “High Performing” rating indicates performance that is well above average on a range of objective quality measures, such as rates of unexpected complications, C-sections, and exclusive breast milk feeding. Of the 680 hospitals that submitted maternity data to U.S. News this year, Englewood Health is one of only 311 that earned a High Performing rating.

“At Englewood Health, our goal is to ensure that our maternity patients receive the highest quality care in a safe and comforting environment,” says Valerie M. French, MBA, BSN, RNC, senior director of nursing for maternal/child health at Englewood Health. “Our focus is on meeting the needs of each patient and ensuring an exceptional birthing experience. This “high performing” quality rating recognizes that effort.”

Nearly 3,000 babies are delivered annually at Englewood Health. At the Karen and Gary Singer Family Family Birth Place at Englewood Health, moms and babies receive expert care and attention from Englewood Health’s dedicated nursing team, as well as a full spectrum of services including prenatal care, high-risk testing and monitoring, childbirth education, and post-pregnancy resources and support.

More than 30 obstetricians deliver babies at Englewood Health. Additionally, maternal-fetal medicine specialists and neonatologists are available on-site to care for high-risk mothers and newborns and provide timely, high-quality care in a modern neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).

To learn more about the rankings and methodology of U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hospitals for Maternity list, visit:

Englewood Health Offers Patients Next-Generation PET/CT Scanner

With the acquisition of new imaging technology, Englewood Health improves disease detection, offering patients quicker, more comfortable scans, with potential for earlier diagnosis

December 19, 2023 — A faster, safer, and more effective medical imaging device has arrived at Englewood Health, with the addition of the Biograph Vision 450, the next-generation PET/CT scanner from Siemens Healthineers.

PET/CT scanners are a critical tool used to detect cancers and neurological disorders, as well as monitor progress in patients undergoing treatment for lung cancer, lymphoma, melanoma, and other cancers.

The new PET/CT scanner dramatically decreases the amount of time it takes to render an image—and therefore the amount of time patients need to spend in the scanner—from 40–45 minutes down to 12–15 minutes. The Biograph Vision 450 offers enhanced image quality and can detect smaller lesions than previously possible—as small as 1 mm in diameter.

This improved image quality not only offers greater diagnostic precision but also has the potential to enable earlier diagnoses, which is crucial for treating medical conditions at their most manageable stages, ultimately improving patient outcomes.

In addition to premium technology, the new scanner offers a larger and wider opening, as well as a higher weight limit, providing better patient comfort. At Englewood Health, patients undergo scans in private rooms equipped with TVs, art imagery, and a choice of their favorite music to listen to while being scanned.

“We understand that needing a scan can bring anxiety. Englewood Health technologists can help reduce that stress by promising a more comfortable and faster imaging experience,” says Mark Shapiro, MD, chief of radiology at Englewood Health. “With the addition of the latest imaging technology, we have further enhanced our patient experience and diagnostic capabilities, illustrating our role as leaders in cancer care for our community.”

“Our team is committed to leveraging innovative technologies to ensure the early and accurate detection of all cancers,” said Steven T. Brower, MD, FACS, medical director of the Lefcourt Family Cancer Treatment and Wellness Center and chief of surgical oncology at Englewood Health. “We remain steadfast in our pursuit of enhancing the ease and comfort of all stages of cancer care. This commitment to excellence and the patient experience is what distinguishes us.”

Englewood Health Earns Top Teaching Hospital Award from The Leapfrog Group

In earning the Top Teaching Hospital Award, Englewood Health ranks among the top 6 percent of hospitals in the nation considered by The Leapfrog Group.

December 5, 2023 — Englewood Health has been named a Top Teaching Hospital by The Leapfrog Group, a national watchdog organization dedicated to healthcare quality and safety.

This marks the sixth year Englewood Health has received the Top Teaching Hospital award. Of the over 2,100 hospitals considered by The Leapfrog Group, Englewood Health was among of just 132 (6 percent) to earn the top hospital award for 2023.

“We are thrilled to share that Englewood Health has been recognized as a Top Teaching Hospital once again,” said Warren Geller, president and CEO of Englewood Health. “Every day, we strive to create a safe and compassionate environment for our patients. This recognition reinforces our mission to provide the highest standard of healthcare to our communities.”

To qualify for the Top Hospital award, hospitals must achieve top performance and excel among their peers on the Leapfrog Hospital Survey, which assesses performance based on quality and patient safety metrics.

“Protecting patients from preventable harm is the cornerstone of The Leapfrog Group’s mission,” said Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group. “Englewood Health has demonstrated that patient safety is their top priority, and we’re truly pleased to recognize them as a Top Hospital this year. Congratulations to hospital staff at all levels who made this national recognition possible.”

To see the full list and methodology of The Leapfrog Group’s 2023 Top Hospital awards, visit

Eliana’s Story ­– Thyroid Cancer 

After Eliana Baum’s teenage niece was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, every member of the family was advised to get screened. Now, Eliana reflects on the series of events that led to lifesaving care she received at Englewood Health.  

It had been just over two months since Eliana Baum’s teenage niece was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. Discovered during an ultrasound for an unrelated condition, her niece’s cancer diagnosis prompted a shift for the entire family. 

Though Eliana’s family had a preexisting history of thyroid cancer—her mother was diagnosed in her late 20s—the onset of cancer in a younger member of the family meant that everyone’s risk for the disease had just increased.  

These were the circumstances that found the 33-year-old schoolteacher in the office of Englewood Health endocrinologist Fadwa Sumrein, DO

“I went in for an ultrasound and Dr. Sumrein found nodules on my thyroid. Within a few days, it was confirmed with a biopsy,” Eliana said. “I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer just two months after my niece.” 

Eliana’s first thoughts upon hearing her diagnosis were of her five-year-old son and her infant twins. 

“I was immediately thinking: will I need surgery, radiation, or chemo? By that time, there had been so much cancer in my family. I think I suffered from having too much information,” Eliana said. 

After the fog of her initial diagnosis cleared, Eliana committed to “taking it one step at a time.”  

“Dr. Sumrein called me before my initial appointment just to go over the results,” Eliana said. “She explained what my diagnosis meant and told me that we were going to take care of this together. She was very reassuring.” 

Dr. Sumrein explained that the first step would be to surgically remove Eliana’s cancer, along with her thyroid. This meant that Eliana would be on hormone replacement therapy for the rest of her life—care that Dr. Sumrein would facilitate after surgery. 

For the surgery itself, Eliana was referred to Englewood Health endocrine and general surgeon Ki Won Kim, MD

“A strong family history of thyroid cancer is a known risk factor that’s been well established in the medical literature. Close relatives of children diagnosed with thyroid cancer may be at an increased risk for developing thyroid cancer themselves,” said Dr. Kim.  

According to Dr. Kim, in circumstances such as this, it’s important to disclose the change in family history to your doctors, so they can advise you of the most appropriate screening guidelines going forward. 

“Dr. Kim is extremely personable. We’re similar ages and both have young kids, so we were able to relate,” Eliana said. “He walked me through the process of surgery and what the incision would look like once it healed. He told me he would blend it into a wrinkle on my neck.” 

Of the process of surgery and recovery, Eliana said it was surprisingly easy. 

“I love Englewood Health,” Eliana said. “I’ve had both of my births there, so I knew I would be taken care of. Everyone in the waiting area was so kind, so on top of everything, and so communicative with my husband. I was put in a beautiful room and was well taken care of the entire time.” 

Eliana was able to go home the day after surgery and was back with her third-grade class within two weeks. In that time, she had follow-up appointments with Drs. Kim and Sumrein, where she learned that, given how thorough the surgery was, she would not need any additional treatment such as radioactive iodine ablation or chemotherapy. 

“Hearing that was a big deal for me. I broke down crying: happy tears.” 

Today, Eliana has passed the one-year mark and is officially in remission. 

“At my most recent checkup, Dr. Sumrein reassured me that this experience was behind me now; that it was a part of my history; and that I did not have cancer anymore,” Eliana said. “I needed to hear that, and I think that was the moment I was able to begin emotionally processing all of this.” 

Of her niece, Eliana said that she is also in remission and back at high school, playing soccer and “doing everything a teenager should be doing.” 

Eliana said if there’s any advice she can offer others based on her own experience, it’s to follow through on the screenings your doctors suggest based on your unique family history. It could prove lifesaving. 

To learn more about thyroid cancer care at Englewood Health, visit:

Reuben’s Story – Prostate Cancer 

Reuben Francisco reflects on the innovative surgical technology that saved his life.

When Reuben Francisco received his test results indicating his PSA levels were elevated, he thought nothing of it.  

“It didn’t sink into me what that might mean. I thought, maybe I have an infection or an enlarged prostate,” Reuben said. “It never crossed my mind that I could have cancer.” 

After receiving these results, Reuben carried on with his life. As a husband, a father of three, and an emergency room nurse, he had a lot on his plate. The 47-year-old did something he would never counsel his own patients to do: he ignored it.  

“I got tested three months later and my levels were still elevated. Again, I ignored it,” Reuben said. “Then three months later I tested again. Finally, I accepted that it was time to see a urologist.” 

Reuben began asking his colleagues in healthcare for recommendations. If he was going to see a urologist, he wanted them to be among the best in the field, highly experienced, and using the latest technology to treat conditions of the prostate.  

“I had friends who told me that, if I needed surgery, I should go with a doctor experienced with the da Vinci surgical robot. I did my own research and knew this would be the best possible option for me.” 

Ultimately, Reuben was encouraged to call Maz Ganat, MD, Chief of Urology and Program Director of Urologic Oncology at Englewood Health. 

“When I talked to him, I felt right away: this is my doctor,” Reuben said. “I could tell Dr. Ganat actually cared.” 

Dr. Ganat performed a biopsy of Reuben’s prostate. When the results came back this time, it was confirmed. Reuben had prostate cancer. 

“It’s scary. When you hear that you have prostate cancer, you don’t know what will happen next,” Reuben said. “My only thought was that my kids still want me around. I still wanted to be around.” 

Dr. Ganat engaged in a detailed discussion with Reuben, presenting him with two primary options: surgery or radiation. Given his prior preparations and research, and due to his young age, Reuben swiftly made his decision in favor of surgery. In fact, he had a specific surgical approach in mind from the outset. 

“At Englewood Health, we have a special expertise with the da Vinci robot, which acts as a natural extension of a surgeon’s eyes and hands,” Dr. Ganat said. “The robot allows us to perform more precise and minimally invasive procedures, which means shorter hospital stays, less post-operative pain, and quicker recoveries, and can result in better outcomes. This is the kind of surgery Reuben ultimately opted for to remove his prostate cancer.” 

Reuben says that his great comfort during surgery and recovery was the conversations he had with Dr. Ganat in the preceding weeks.  

“He prepared me step-by-step for everything that I would eventually experience. He would say, ‘after this many weeks, you’ll feel like this,’ and it would all happen. Everything fell into place exactly as he said it would.” 

Today, Reuben is recovered and back at work caring for his own patients, undoubtedly encouraging them to prioritize their cancer screenings, just as he ultimately did. His experience, marked by the care he received at Englewood Health, continues to fill him with gratitude.  

Reuben stated, “Today, I am happy, and I know that Dr. Ganat saved not only my life but also my family’s. Now, I am here, living free from cancer.” 

Englewood Hospital Nurse Residency Program Receives Accreditation

Hospital Recognized by ANCC for Excellence in Transitioning Nurses to Clinical Practice

PTAP accreditation celebration - group of nurses

November 30, 2023 — Englewood Hospital’s Nurse Residency Program has received accreditation as a Practice Transition Accreditation Program® (PTAP) from the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Englewood Health is one of 21 New Jersey hospitals accredited as an ANCC PTAP, which sets the global standard for residency programs transitioning registered nurses into new practice settings.

“Our Nurse Residency Program is committed to helping transition novice nurses into clinical practice with confidence,” said Kathleen Kaminsky, MS, RN, NE-BC, senior vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer at Englewood Health. “This accreditation reaffirms our commitment to educating and supporting the clinical and professional development of new nurses as they become professional caregivers.”

Englewood Health’s 12-month Nurse Residency Program offers residents the opportunity to work in a collaborative learning environment alongside experienced staff in a real-life setting. New nurses work to improve their critical thinking, clinical reasoning, leadership, and inter-professional communication skills, preparing them to provide high-quality, evidence-based, patient- and family-centered care.

The accreditation process, which began in March 2023, included an in-depth review of the program’s history, leadership, orientation, development and design, goals and measured outcomes, and practice-based learning.

The program, launched in 2019 with Vizient, includes a four-day general nursing orientation, unit/specialty-specific orientation, two-day introduction to the program, and participation in monthly four-hour seminars, including lectures, group work, and simulation activities. Each resident is assigned a preceptor who guides the hands-on clinical experience. All nurses hired at Englewood Hospital who have less than one year of professional experience are automatically enrolled in the residency program.

“We are thrilled to mark another milestone in the growth and innovation of our Magnet-recognized nursing program as we work to shape the future of nursing at Englewood Health and in New Jersey,” said Kaminsky.

To date, the program has graduated 11 cohorts—totaling 103 graduated residents—and has outperformed the national benchmarks for one-year retention of new nurses in 2021 and 2022.