Samaritan Summit Village to host Senior Living Seminar

Watertown, NY – Samaritan Summit Village, 22691 Campus Dr, is hosting a Senior Living Seminar on Thursday, June 15, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event is free and open to anyone planning or helping to plan senior care.

Hear from professionals in senior care, legal matters, financial planning, real estate, and speak with local community agencies that offer resources. Lunch is provided by First Command, and a tour of the Assisted Living facility at Samaritan Summit Village will be available. Each participant will be entered to win an iPad as well! No obligations.

Finding the right solution for long term care needs is important. Seniors and their loved ones want the right mix of services and support to preserve independence, maintain safety, and enhance quality of life. The Senior Living Seminar will provide information and resources needed to help seniors continue the lifestyle they love while providing options for the care that meets their individualized needs. 

An Assisting Living program provides nursing care, home care, personal care and meals for residents that require service above and beyond what is typically provided while living in the community. Samaritan Summit Village has 120 assisted living beds and features a home-like environment that is flexible, offering a range of housing and lifestyle options for personalized care in a residential setting.

Samaritan is committed to long term care in Northern New York. Our goal is to take care of people at all stages of life, providing the most appropriate level of care for each individual’s unique medical, physical, and emotional needs.

Those interested in attending should contact Anna Doldo, Public Relations Specialist, Samaritan Medical Center, at 315-785-4584.

To learn more about Assisted Living at Samaritan Summit Village, visit


Samaritan Receives Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Health and Wellness Award

Watertown, NY – Samaritan Medical Center has received an Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Health and Wellness Award in the amount of $9,942.81 for its Cancer Pathology Quality Improvement program to fund a new Compound Microscope and a C-Mount Camera Port. This purchase will directly impact the quality of care for cancer patients by improving prognosis time and alleviating the need for follow-up biopsies. With this equipment upgrade, Samaritan will be able to directly improve the quality of care for 120 cancer patients annually.

“We are proud to partner with Samaritan Medical Center to fund this essential equipment designed to improve quality of care for cancer patients,” shares Excellus BCBS Regional President Eve Van de Wal. “This work aligns with our mission as a Health Plan to improve the health and wellbeing of those in our community.”

According to Dr. Shikhar Vyas, Laboratory Director, Samaritan Medical Center participates in a monthly multidisciplinary cancer conference with subspecialty participants from Samaritan, Walker Center for Cancer Care, and other regional hospitals.  As a team, patients with a cancer diagnosis are presented, radiologic and pathologic findings are discussed, and an optimum treatment plan of action for the best patient outcome is determined.  “With this new microscope and camera equipment, pathology will be able to share vital patient information beyond reports by showing slides in real-time to all participants in these conferences for educational, diagnostic and prognostic purposes. We hope to improve the quality of care for the Walker Center for Cancer Care patients and overall outcomes,” he said.

Pictured: Dr. Shikhar Vyas, Laboratory Director; Beth Fipps, Vice President Foundation & Community Services; and Eve Van de Wal, Regional President at Excellus BlueCross BlueShield

Samaritan Medical Center Foundation opens Online Auction for the 26th Annual Thousand Islands Golf Classic

Watertown, NY – Samaritan Medical Center Foundation of Northern New York will host the 26th annual Thousand Islands Golf Classic event on Thursday, June 8, and Friday, June 9, 2023. The presenting sponsor is the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 910 & Northern New York National Electrical Contractors Association.

The online auction for this year’s event is now live and features artwork, airline ticket vouchers, vacation home rentals, paddleboards, gift cards, private boat cruises, rafting passes, and more! The dinner reception with a special live auction, including New York Giants football tickets, go-cart, and more will take place on Thursday, June 8, at the Edgewood Resort in Alexandria Bay, NY. Tickets are available now. The online auction will close on Thursday, June 8.

A portion of the proceeds raised from this year’s event will be dedicated to enhancing vital mental health services at Samaritan Medical Center. The increased demand for mental health services in our community can be seen as Samaritan’s Emergency Department behavioral health unit patient volume has doubled this past year, and our inpatient mental health unit continues to be full.

Additional details, the online auction, and updates may be found online by visiting and for questions please email

Samaritan Unveils Newly Expanded Ear, Nose & Throat Specialty Clinic

Watertown, NY – Samaritan Medical Center unveiled its newly expanded Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT) specialty clinic with an Open House and Ribbon Cutting event on Friday, May 5, 2023.  The clinic, previously located on the second floor of the Samaritan Medical Office Building at 826 Washington Street moved to its new, larger space on the third floor and began seeing patients at the new location on Monday, May 8, 2023.  The new clinic increased in space from 3,800 to 7,300 square feet, from 9 to 11 exam rooms, and from 1 to 3 treatment rooms.

“This is truly an exciting day for us,” said Tom Carman, president and chief executive officer.  The new facility will allow the providers to accommodate more patients and to perform in-office treatments and procedures in a timely manner. 

Dr. David Gordon, an otolaryngologist, said the ENT clinic sees nearly 10,000 patients a year. “That’s a big investment in our community,” he said. “Samaritan has recognized that and recognized that this is part of our future and that we’re growing, and we’ll continue to grow and with this beautiful new facility we can do just that.”

Dr. Tony Chuang, otolaryngologist and chief of the ENT service at Samaritan, expressed his happiness with the new facility, which will allow them to continue to deliver the best care possible for patients locally.  “I’m very excited to see that we will be able to provide more services to our community and be able to also attract other candidates to join our party here,” he said.

Samaritan’s Ear, Nose &Throat (ENT) specialists diagnose, manage and treat diseases and disorders of the ear, nose, throat and related structures of the head and neck, including the sinuses, larynx (voice box), oral cavity and upper pharynx (mouth and throat).   

L-R: Tom Zajak, PA-C; Chad DeMarche, PA-C; Dr. David Gordon; Dr. Tony Chuang; Tom Carman, President/CEO; Amy Hanson, Senior Operations Manager

Samaritan Announces Mask-Optional Health System for Most Patients, Visitors, and Staff

Watertown, NY – On May 5, 2023, the majority of Samaritan facilities will now be mask-optional for all staff, patients, and visitors under certain criteria. This decision comes after closely watching Community Transmission levels which remain at moderate, COVID hospitalization and infection rates declining, flu rates dropping, as well as more indicators.  Samaritan now safely offers a mask-optional environment in many areas, however if any of these metrics have an uptick, we could return to wearing facemasks. 

The three major exceptions to this change that will remain mask-required for all staff, patients/residents and visitors are:

  • The Emergency Department, because of the high-risk involved with the patients needing care and maintaining crucial source control. 
  • The Walker Center for Cancer Care, because of the weakened immune systems of the patients served.
  • The Samaritan Keep Home and Summit Village, because they are regulated under different guidelines.  

Patients, visitors and/or healthcare personnel are to follow masking practices per unit/department when specifically indicated.

Any patient in any area who has signs or symptoms of respiratory illness or COVID-19 will be asked to wear a facemask as per Samaritan’s source control policy.

The public does not need to be masked in most Samaritan areas. Visitors who are not feeling well or have been in contact with anyone who tested positive for COVID-19 are encouraged to stay home and cannot visit patients or accompany patients to appointments.

Preliminary Discussions with City of Watertown Planning Board

We are aware of the recent news that Samaritan provided a proposal to the City of Watertown Planning Board with the preliminary idea to construct a new building on our property. However, there is some confusion on this process.

Samaritan is consistently looking to meet our patients’ and the community’s healthcare needs, and oftentimes this can lead to new construction and renovation of existing space. Adequate space is often a challenge at healthcare facilities.

At this time, Samaritan is proactively bringing construction ideas and questions to the City of Watertown Planning Board as there are new City zoning changes that we need to navigate together. The goal is to understand the zoning changes and how it impacts any possible new construction for the Medical Center.

That being said, Samaritan is only in the investigative stage of potentially constructing a new building near the main hospital. These are preliminary discussions and there is no official Certificate of Need (CON) submitted to the NYS Department of Health (DOH) or Samaritan Medical Center Board approval at this time.

Samaritan is pulling our submission from the City of Watertown Planning Board because our intent was to have a conversation about future plans, not seek approval for a new building. We simply wanted feedback and we did receive very valuable feedback. However, there was some miscommunication on both ends. We did not anticipate seeking any approval from the City at this time.

Once there are more permanent plans, Samaritan and our construction teams will go back to the Planning Board and let the community know of our future plans.

Samaritan Celebrates February 2023 DAISY® and BEE Award Recipients

Watertown, NY – Samaritan Medical Center is pleased to announce its DAISY and BEE Award recipients for February 2023. The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses® recognizes exemplary nursing staff, and the BEE Award honors other outstanding staff members who support patient care, both at the hospital and all outpatient clinics.

Taylor Endres, registered nurse at Car Freshner Center for Women and Children at Samaritan Medical Center received the DAISY Award. Jacqueline Henry, unit clerk at Samaritan Medical Center’s Inpatient Mental Health Unit, received the BEE Award.

Sarabrooke Mowery, PA and grateful patient at Samaritan Medical Center nominated Endres saying:

Taylor Endres, RN

“Taylor was the difference in excellent labor, delivery, and maternal after care in the 48 hours after our daughters birth. Taylor was the primary nurse during labor and delivery portion and she was phenomenal. She cared for me in a way that really showed she cared. Anything and everything to make me comfortable, she did it without hesitation. Her experience not only as a nurse, but as a mother herself, was apparent and every tip and trick was offered to me through my very painful and quick labor. When Taylor came on the next evening, out of the goodness of her heart, came by to check on baby and me, even though she does not work in the maternal ward. She was the one who listened to us and turned my care around. She listened and provided as the great nurse she is. After our concerns were raised she jumped into action and my pain was the primary focus. Within minutes she had medication to sooth my pain and an endless supply of ice diapers. Our assigned night shift nurse took the time to teach proper swaddling and baby bathing techniques. With Taylor’s care and love for her job, we were finally able to truly focus on our baby and enjoy her. Taylor is a blessing and an amazing nurse, she is one of the reasons Samaritan Labor & Delivery has the great reputation it does.” 

For receiving the DAISY Award – which is an international award backed by The DAISY Foundation – Endres was presented with a certificate commending her as an extraordinary nurse, a DAISY Award pin, and a symbolic sculpture called “A Healer’s Touch,” which is hand-carved by artists of the Shona Tribe in Zimbabwe. A larger version of this sculpture has also been installed in the Healing Gardens at Samaritan Medical Center in honor of all DAISY and BEE Award winners to come. It was purchased using funds donated by the Samaritan Auxiliary.

Henry was nominated by a Robyn McGowan, RN at Samaritan Medical Center with the following statement for nomination:  

Jacqueline Henry, Unit Clerk

“Jaqueline is an asset to our unit. Especially on our weekend, she is extremely helpful. She comes to the nurse’s station to give us updates, helps with the extensive phone calls, scheduling visitations, and other various tasks; allowing the nurses to focus on their own duties with patient care. She is very knowledgeable with computer skills, and help the nurses immensely. She handles every task with ease. She exemplifies Samaritan’s values: accountability, honesty, empathy, respect, and trustworthiness. She is a true team player. She is always going above and beyond to help the unit run as smoothly as possible. She is the first to offer to sit with patients who have coded when we are short-staffed or when it is unsafe for a safety aide to be off the unit with the volatile patient population. When her unit clerk duties are completed, she asks for more jobs/tasks to do within her job description. Her actions reflect great credit upon herself, IMHU, and Samaritan Medical Center.”

Henry was presented with a certificate, a BEE Award pin, and a gift bag with other tokens of gratitude.

Both awards will continue to be presented throughout the year, and nominations can be submitted by patients, families, or colleagues at any time. To make a nomination or to learn more about the Samaritan DAISY and BEE Awards, visit


About Samaritan Medical Center

Samaritan Medical Center (Watertown, New York) is a 290-bed not-for-profit community medical center, offering a full spectrum of inpatient and outpatient healthcare services. From primary and emergency care to highly specialized medical and surgical services, such as cancer treatment, neonatal intensive care, behavioral health and addiction services, and imaging services, Samaritan Medical Center and its team of healthcare professionals proudly serves the medical needs of our civilian and military community. Quality, compassion, and safety are the basic principles by which exceptional care is delivered at Samaritan.

About The DAISY Foundation

The DAISY Foundation is a not-for-profit organization, established in memory of J. Patrick Barnes, by members of his family. Patrick died at the age of 33 in late 1999 from complications of Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP), a little known but not uncommon auto-immune disease. (DAISY is an acronym for Diseases Attacking the Immune System.) The care Patrick and his family received from nurses while he was ill inspired this unique means of thanking nurses for making a profound difference in the lives of their patients and patient families. In addition to the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses, the Foundation expresses gratitude to the nursing profession internationally in over 3,900 healthcare facilities and schools of nursing with recognition of direct care Nurses, Nurse-led Teams, Nurse Leaders, Nursing Faculty, Nursing Students, through the J. Patrick Barnes Grants for Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice Projects and for nurses participating in medical missions. More information is available at

Samaritan Announces Secure Online Access to Medical Scans and Images

Watertown, NY – Samaritan Medical Center announces the implementation of a free, secure, and convenient process for patients to obtain online access to medical scans and images, effective April 3, 2023. When a patient has imaging/radiology testing done at any Samaritan facility, those images and accompanying reports will be available via secure online access through our partnership with Nuance PowerShare.  This system is separate from our patient portal systems.  It can be accessed by the patient and any medical provider that the patient designates to see their images.

Patients will need to create a secure account with PowerShare in order to access medical scans and images.  This account created provides Samaritan with consent to provide these electronic medical images to patients via this secure system. Patients can also grant access to their medical providers.  This is the quickest and most convenient way to get medical images to providers. 

A secure account with PowerShare will provide many benefits to patients – online access to medical images at no charge; accessibility from anywhere, at any time, with any internet-connected device; unlimited secure storage of medical images; images can be downloaded from the system to have forever; and the ability to share your images with doctors who need to see them.

To gain access to this new system, patients need only email or call 315-785-4527 and provide their full name and date of birth.  Patients can expect a response within one business day. This will start the official electronic process to gain access to PowerShare.  Once an account is set up, patients will need to specify which images they are requesting.  Full details are available at

If patients do not have access to the internet, or do not want to create a PowerShare account, the traditional method to receive images on a disc will still be available.  Those without internet access can request images in-person at the Medical Records Department with a signed Release of Information form.   Others may request images via email to with a signed Release of Information form, which is available at

Samaritan Announces Expanded Inpatient Visitation Hours

Watertown, NY After careful consideration, and because the COVID-19 hospitalization rates remain stable, Samaritan Medical Center announces an update to visitation hours.

As of Monday, April 3, 2023, Medical/Surgical (inpatient) Units, Intensive Care Unit, and Progressive Care Unit patients may have visitors from 8 a.m.-8 p.m.

For more information on Samaritan Medical Center’s visitation policy, visit:

For safety purposes, all visitors must be in good health. We have updated our visitor management system and remind inpatient visitors that a driver’s license or other government-issued photo ID is required at the time of visit. Most visitation is restricted to those 12 years of age or older. A parent or guardian must accompany visitors under the age of 18. Masks are required, as well as proper hand-washing throughout the visit. Visitors who have recently been in quarantine or in contact with anyone who tested positive for COVID-19 are encouraged to stay home.

Samaritan Medical Center Announces Changes to Outpatient Pre-Surgical COVID-19 Testing Requirement and Closure of Drive-Up Testing Site Location

Watertown, NY – Samaritan Medical Center will no longer require COVID-19 testing prior to outpatient surgical procedures effective Saturday, April 1, 2023, in accordance with New York State Department of Health guidance.  Exceptions to this are surgical patients scheduled to be an inpatient post-surgery or any surgical patient with symptoms or at the provider’s discretion.  Those patients will test on the day of scheduled surgery upon arrival and admission to the hospital. All patients will be screened for any COVID-19 symptoms before the procedure.  Any patient that is sick or ill will be rescheduled for their surgical procedure. 

As a result of this change, Samaritan’s COVID-19 Drive-Up Testing Site at 1575 Washington Street, Watertown, will close effective April 1, 2023.  Other testing sites are available at local pharmacy locations as well as North Country Family Health Center, 238 Arsenal Street, Watertown, NY, 315-775-7777.  For a full listing of community-based COVID-19 testing sites, visit