A Week In Business

Biz AThe Blacksmith Restaurant in Berlin was presented with the Green Restaurant award during the Ocean City Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association dinner meeting last month. Pictured, from left, are Worcester County Commissioner Joe Mitrecic, Justine Zegna of the Blacksmith, Deb Travers of Comcast Spotlight, Tourism Director Lisa Challenger and Summer Gayan of the Blacksmith. Photo courtesy of OCHMRA

Biz CThe 2015-2016 officers and board members of Peninsula Regional Medical Center’s Junior Auxiliary Board were recently installed at the group’s annual meeting. Pictured, from left, are Cynthia Holloway, Immediate Past President; Susan Peacock, Vice President of Human Resources; Donna Anderson, President Elect; Joanne Jackson, President; Irene Phillips, Vice President of Retail; Jani Long, Recording Secretary; Mary Lou Zimmer, Treasurer; Jane Corcoran, Vice President of Finance; Pat Kern, Board member; and Cheryl Wootten, Board member. Submitted Photo

Green Award Winners

OCEAN CITY — Worcester County Tourism named the 2015 Worcester Green Award winners during the Ocean City Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association dinner meeting April 23. Green awards are given in the categories of Community Leader, Business, Lodging, Restaurant and Teacher.

The Community Leader award went to Green Team Chair Bill Killinger, of the Community Church at Ocean Pines, for instituting a recycling program at the church and hosting highway cleanup projects.

Plak That earned the Business award for using power generated with wind energy through a Delmarva Power supplier and utilizing UPS’s carbon neutral shipping program. Plack That participates in the 1% for the Planet program.

The River Gem B&B at The Littleton T. Clarke House in Pocomoke, a Maryland Green Travel Partner, won the Lodging award for serving organic coffee and fresh, local produce and hosting recycling and low energy projects.

The Blacksmith in Berlin received the Restaurant award for serving fresh seafood from West Ocean City and Crisfield, produce from local farmers, bakeries and breweries and utilizing reusable rather than disposable products.

Mendy Stover-Fiori, a first grade teacher at Ocean City Elementary School, won the Teacher award for demonstrating sustainable gardening in the classroom, where they manage a worm farm/compost project and a Trash to Treasure project.

“Our county is fortunate to have so many who are dedicated to cultivating a more sustainable tomorrow by instituting best practices today,” Worcester County Tourism Director Lisa Challenger said.

Worcester Green is sponsored by Worcester County Tourism and Comcast Spotlight along with the OC Hotel-Motel-Restaurant Association, OceanCity.com, and Maryland Green Travel.

Leadership Graduate

BERLIN — Terry McGowan of Berkshire Hathaway PenFed Realty in Ocean City recently graduated from the Maryland Association of REALTORS® (MAR) 15th Annual Leadership Academy.

Terry McGowan

Terry McGowan

The MAR Leadership Academy was formed by REALTORS® who understand the important role they play in their community and the need to enhance the leadership skills, knowledge, and competencies of fellow REALTORS® interested in making a difference in their personal lives and in their communities.

Berkshire Hathaway PenFed Realty, is a strong advocate and recognizes the importance of this program to the company’s future.

“Terry McGowan makes our second agent to graduate from this superb academy, along with Linda Moran. Just adds to the quality service our agents provide their clients and public in general,” said Sales Manager Jay Wise.

The MAR Leadership Academy offers an intensive curriculum designed to develop skills in leadership, communications, strategic planning, legislative and government affairs and community involvement.  Classes are conducted over seven months and stress the value of professional and personal commitment to business, charitable and civic endeavors.

Market Uptick Reported

BERLIN – A marked increase in pending sales throughout April on the Lower Shore indicates a strong busy season for the local real estate industry.

According to the latest figures from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR), which represents the activity of more than 1,000 REALTOR® members in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties, contracts, or pending sales, on the Lower Shore increased in April by 28.8 percent compared to the same time last year. The more notable increases were in Wicomico County, where single-family home contracts increased by 45.5 percent and condominium contracts increased by 50 percent.

Settlement numbers were largely down in April on the Lower Shore, with the exception of a 1.5-percent increase in single-family home sales in Worcester County.

A 28.8-percent decrease in days on market for the area indicates faster moving inventory in April, compared to March.

Overall, list prices and sales prices were down in April, as was the number of homes that sold at or close to their listing price.

“With our members working in or near a resort area, we always see increased market activity in the spring and summer months and the encouraging spike in contracts shows that our busy season is under way,” said CAR Board of Directors President Vicki Harmon. “Look for those contracts to turn into settlements very soon as our sales activity shifts into high gear and our REALTORS® do what they do best, which is providing top notch service to buyers and sellers in the tri-county area.”

Doctor Works With Expert

SALISBURY — Peninsula Orthopaedic Associates (POA) surgeon Dr. Pasquale Pertrera recently returned from Genk, Belgium where he was invited to spend a day operating with Dr. Kristoff Corten, an internationally recognized expert on minimally invasive hip replacement surgery using the direct anterior approach.

This advanced surgical technique can offer advantages over standard surgical procedures, including smaller incision, shorter hospital stay, faster recovery and rehabilitation, less blood loss, and less scar tissue.

“This surgical approach is unique because it allows surgeons to keep the patient’s muscle tissue intact by using a smaller incision and working between the muscles and tissues as the surgery progresses eliminating the need for us to detach the muscles and tissue from the femur during surgery, which enables surgeons offering patients this procedure to avoid creating additional trauma to the surrounding tissue,” said Pertrera. “Being invited to spend a day operating with Dr. Corten was not only a pleasure, but was a day full of additional learning that will ultimately benefit all of our hip replacement patients going forward.”

Peninsula Home Care Honored

SALISBURY — Peninsula Home Care (PHC) has been recognized on a national stage for qualifying as “Agency of the Month” by the Home Health Quality Improvement (HHQI) Network. PHC is being recognized for efforts in reducing hospital readmissions and medication management.

“When a patient is discharged from the hospital, the necessary care for a full recovery doesn’t end,” said Nancy Bagwell, Branch Director for PHC in Maryland. “While continued medical care is necessary, many times it is not coordinated and shared with health care providers beyond the hospital. That’s when a return trip to the hospital occurs sooner than anticipated.”

Over the course of a year, Peninsula Home Care has tracked 2,356 patients in an effort to identify readmission risk factors. Of the over 2,000 individuals cared for and tracked, 1,641 are Medicare patients. For Medicare, readmissions contribute significantly to the cost of care as 18% of all Medicare patients discharged from the hospital are readmitted within 30 days of discharge, accounting for $15 billion in spending nationally. While not all readmissions are avoidable, many clearly are.

Peninsula Home Care took into account all risk levels from insufficient funds for medication and lack of transportation and missed follow up doctor appointments to fall risks and other chronic disease symptoms. Peninsula Home Care was recognized for initiating Best Practices in efforts to reduce hospital readmissions.

“We take pride in our commitment to providing quality care to all patients before they are discharged from the hospital to home,” said Bagawell. “Our interdisciplinary team coordination approach helps everyone involved know the ins and outs of a patient’s plan of care. Teamwork fosters success and every detail counts.”

By tracking patients, the PHC team was able to proactively intervene, communicate challenges to doctors and other healthcare providers and develop a plan for the coordination of care that would best fit the patients’ needs at home.

SoDel Names Advisor

REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. — SoDel Concepts, an award-winning hospitality group, recently announced that Alan Levin will join the team as senior advisor. Levin will step down from his role as economic development director for the state of Delaware at the end of the year’s legislative session.

“We are thrilled to have someone of Alan’s experience and caliber as an advisor,” said Scott Kammerer, president and CEO of SoDel Concepts, which owns eight restaurants, Plate Catering, Big Thunder Roadside Kitchen, a food truck, hospitality management and consulting divisions, and SoDel Films. “We are building a successful regional hospitality company, creating more jobs and providing our employees with the opportunity to grow with the company. Alan has the skills to help us achieve those goals.”

Levin, who has led the Delaware Development Office (DEDO) since Gov. Jack Markell took office in 2009, is the former head of Happy Harry’s, the American drugstore chain founded by his father, Harry Levin. The chain was purchased by Walgreens.