Monthly Archives: December 2013

BMC’s Child Life Program spread holiday cheers to Boston area children



Maura Power and Stephanie Sharp both Child Life Specialists at Boston Medical Center spent the past several weeks collecting and sorting through donated toys to distribute to low-income families in the Boston area. Thanks to the generous donations pouring in from all over the Boston community more than 1800 toys were donated bringing holiday cheers to over 600 kids. Approximately 300 families were touched by this generosity and lined up at BMC on Friday and Monday to receive their bag filled with toys to have in time to open on Christmas morning. The Child Life Program would like to thank everyone for their generous donations that brought smiles to many families this holiday season! To learn more on how you can help with next year’s toy drive please click here.


Boston Trauma would like to wish everyone a happy, healthy and safe holiday season!


2013 Bostonians of the Year: When bombs went off at the Boston Marathon finish line, the crowds fled for safety. But a group of everyday people like Dan Marshall, Natalie Stavas, and Larry Hittinger rushed in to offer whatever help they could.



IN THE SAVANNA OF THE BACK BAY, a few tenths of a mile from the devastation, all the herds were charging toward her. The runners were fleeing something awful, screaming about explosions. The authorities were shouting something urgent, commanding everyone to follow the stampede away from the chaos on Boylston Street.

Instead, Natalie Stavas ran toward it. She isn’t a cop or firefighter and had every right to flee. But something compelled her to head toward the trouble. The petite blond who lives in the South End and was competing in her fourth Boston Marathon, this time with an injured foot, jumped over a barricade on Hereford Street and sprinted down a back alley. As she approached Boylston, a couple of blocks from the bloody finish line, a cluster of cops barked at her to turn around. She refused, screaming: “I’m a kids’ doctor! Let me help.”

Months after the Marathon bombings, Stavas, now 32, smiles in embarrassment at how that comment must have sounded at the time. During the interviews she gave in the immediate aftermath, she substituted “pediatric” for “kids” in her reconstructed dialogue, which somehow sounded better. By now she knows her choice of words really doesn’t matter. Whatever she said was enough for the police to let her through. “A kids’ doctor is still a doctor,” she says, “right?”

Stavas, a pediatric resident training jointly at Boston Medical Center and Boston Children’s Hospital, saw blood everywhere. She could even taste its metallic tang in the smoky air. There had already been two blasts. Chances were good there would be more. Still, she rushed in to help the wounded.

Click here to read full article



Natalie Stavas, pediatric resident training jointly at Boston Medical Center and Boston Children’s Hospital named as one of The Boston Globe Magazine’s “Bostonians Of The Year” for her heroic efforts during the Boston Marathon

Three Civilian Heroes from the Boston Marathon Bombings Named  The Boston Globe Magazine’s “Bostonians of The Year”

Boston, MA (PRWEB) December 20, 2013

The Boston Globe Magazine announced today that it has selected Natalie Stavas, Dan Marshall and Larry Hittinger—three heroes among us who sprang to action during the Boston Marathon bombings—as 2013 “Bostonians of the Year.” They will be featured in a special edition of The Boston Globe Magazine on December 22, and online at The magazine will also include profiles of 12 other Bostonians being honored for their achievements in 2013.

Ignoring the basic human instinct to flee from danger, Stavas, Marshall and Hittinger charged into the carnage of the Boston Marathon bombings to aid victims.

Stavas, a 32-year-old pediatric resident training jointly at Boston Medical Center and Boston Children’s Hospital, and competing in her fourth Boston Marathon, jumped a barricade and rushed to the Marathon finish line to help the wounded. Even after being told to clear the area, she refused and ushered people to ambulances, and reassured and aided the wounded.

Read more:

Cutting-edge simulation center providing BMC staff with the most realistic simulation experience possible using state-of-the-art mannequins

Solomont Clinical Simulation and Nursing Education Center

At the Solomont Center caregivers use computer-controlled simulators to develop and refine skills, and learn new procedures and treatment protocols before using them on actual patients. In the spring of 2013, Boston Medical Center completed construction on a 5000 square-foot state-of-the-art simulation center in the home of the former Newton Pavilion Emergency Department. The new center consolidates various simulation areas around the hospital, including those located in Anesthesia, Nursing, Pediatrics and the Emergency Department. The simulation center gives staff the most realistic simulation experience possible using state-of-the-art mannequins programmed with predefined scenarios. 


Eduarda Fernandes, RN, MSN, Clinical Educator in Nursing prepares a high fidelity simulation manikin for an Emergency Airway Response scenario.  Clinical staff from Nursing, Pulmonary & Critical Care, Surgery, ORL, Anesthesia and Respiratory Care participated in this exercise.



Joe Blansfield, NP in the control room demonstrating how the video cameras capture the simulation exercise that is later reviewed in the debriefing sessions following the simulation. 

2013 Holiday Safety Tips!



  • When purchasing an artificial tree, look for the label “Fire Resistant.”
  • When purchasing a live tree, check for freshness. A fresh tree is green, needles are hard to pull from branches, and needles do not break when bent between your fingers. The trunk butt of a fresh tree is sticky with resin, and when tapped on the ground, the tree should not lose many needles.
  • When setting up a tree at home, place it away from fireplaces, radiators or portable heaters. Place the tree out of the way of traffic and do not block doorways.
  • Cut a few inches off the trunk of your tree to expose the fresh wood. This allows for better water absorption and will help keep your tree from drying out and becoming a fire hazard.
  • Be sure to keep the stand filled with water, because heated rooms can dry live trees out rapidly.


  • Check all tree lights–even if you’ve just purchased them–before hanging them on your tree. Make sure all the bulbs work and that there are no frayed wires, broken sockets or loose connections.
  • Never use electric lights on a metallic tree. The tree can become charged with electricity from faulty lights, and a person touching a branch could be electrocuted.
  • Some light strands may contain lead in the bulb sockets and wire coating, sometimes in high amounts. Make sure your lights are out of reach of young children who might try to mouth them, and wash your hands after handling them.
  • Before using lights outdoors, check labels to be sure they have been certified for outdoor use. To hold lights in place, string them through hooks or insulated staples, not nails or tacks. Never pull or tug lights to remove them.
  • Plug all outdoor electric decorations into circuits with ground fault circuit interrupters to avoid potential shocks.
  • Turn off all lights when you go to bed or leave the house. The lights could short out and start a fire.

Photo courtesy of

Click here to read full article

Dr. Kofi Abbensetts presenting at the Acute Trauma Life Support (ATLS) course to an audience consisting of resident physicians from BMC and outside physicians from all over New England, a student from the Netherlands and even one from the Air Force!