A Week In Business

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Law Firm Affilation

BERLIN – Cockey, Brennan & Maloney, P.C., a Salisbury-based law firm, has announced its affiliation with Kathleen Smith, Esquire, of Ocean City. Smith became of counsel to the firm Feb. 8. She will be handling primarily criminal defense matters.

An Eastern Shore native, Smith is a 1986 alumna of Mary Washington College and graduated in 1989 from the University of Maryland Law School. She has more than 18 years experience practicing law in both the private and public sector. She has served as an assistant public defender and as both an assistant and deputy State’s Attorney in Worcester County. She later served as deputy State’s Attorney for Dorchester County.

AGH Celebrates ER Promise

BERLIN – Atlantic General Hospital celebrated the one-year anniversary of its 30 Minute ER Promise, a commitment to the community to place ER visitors in a treatment bed or initiate their care within 30 minutes of arrival, in grand style last month. In recognition of the occasion and the tremendous success of the program, hospital administration treated all associates and medical staff to a four-course gourmet meal to thank them for their support.

 “Fantastic teamwork is what made the 30 Minute ER Promise a success,” said Andi-West McCabe, director of emergency services at Atlantic General. “It took a hospital-wide effort to make this happen, and it’s truly wonderful considering the hours-long waits that are the norm in ERs across the country.”

When planning for this initiative in 2006, the ER Promise steering committee set a goal to meet the 30-minute-or-less commitment at least 90 percent of the time. They set this goal with consideration for the especially high peak flow times during the busy summer months when the population of Worcester County, which includes nearby Ocean City, increases from just under 50,000 to nearly 300,000. Gift cards for local businesses were purchased to provide to those patients with longer waits to thank them for their patience and understanding.

As it turned out, the emergency department was able to meet that goal more than 94 percent of the time during the first year, from February 2007 through January 2008 – a major accomplishment considering that Atlantic General Hospital’s emergency department saw a greater than 14 percent increase in its ER usage during that same period, the highest growth grate of any hospital in the state of Maryland. The state average was 2 to 3 percent.

 “We are proud that we can offer this level of service to the community,” said Michael Franklin, president and CEO of Atlantic General Hospital. “I think the program demonstrates to our area residents and visitors that we are committed to their health and to offering the best medical services possible.”

Bed Bath & Beyond Opens

BERLIN – Bed Bath & Beyond has announced the opening in West Ocean City of its new 23,000-square-foot store featuring quality domestic merchandise and home furnishings.

The Ocean City store is the 17th store in the state of Maryland. Bed Bath & Beyond is also located in Salisbury.

“At Bed Bath & Beyond, we are committed to providing exceptional customer service, a broad and deep assortment and great value to our customers. We look forward to continuing these traditions in Ocean City,” said Steven Temares, Chief Executive Officer of Bed Bath & Beyond.

The company’s shopping environment offers customers a fun and exciting shopping experience. Its extensive line of merchandise includes bed linens, bath accessories, window treatments, kitchen linens, as well as cookware, dinnerware, glassware, lifestyle accessories, closet and storage items and juvenile items.

Top Agent Named

BERLIN – Associate Broker Sonia Zaffiris, who was recently named agent of the year for 2007, has now been named top agent for March by Debbie Hileman, broker of Hileman Real Estate.

Academy Launches Website

BERLIN — The licensing process for teen drivers in Maryland can be a confusing journey. The Eastern Shore Driving Academy is introducing its new website to provide important information for both new drivers and their parents.

The new website, www.easternshoredrivingacademy.com, allows users to take a learner’s permit prep test offered by the MVA. The test may be taken as a tutorial, or as a timed practice test, very similar to what they will face at the MVA.

There are also links to MVA publications including, “All You Need To Know About Your Driver’s License,” and the “Maryland Driver’s Handbook.”

The website also helps parents understand the licensing process for their teen. The MVA Rookie Driver link gives parents information on the procedure for obtaining a learner’s permit, provisional license, or full license.

The website provides links to other useful websites including AAA, Carfax, Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, and many more.

The Eastern Shore Driving Academy, owned by Ocean City Police Department veteran Barry Neeb and his partner Patrice Hamilton-Ottey, a former OCPD officer, opened in October, 2007. Viewers to the website can read about the services provided by the academy, staff biographies, class schedules and much more.

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