Memorial committed to purchase of safer products…

Here at Virginia Mason Memorial we are committed to increase purchases of safe and healthier products for healthier staff, patients, community and world.


Many products used in pediatric care still contain chemicals of concern, according to a new analysis of chemicals in over 250 products commonly found in pediatric patient rooms.

Clean Production Action’s analysis found 45 percent of the products evaluated contained one or more chemicals of high concern to human health and the environment, even though some suppliers sold comparable products without hazardous chemicals, demonstrating the availability of safer alternatives.

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Holiday Streakin’

Mai Hoang popped over to `Ohana Mammography Center to see how the teams there were doing in her annual Holiday Streakin’ Fitness Challenge.

The opportunity to be fit is everywhere! The folks at `Ohana use their conference room for quick exercise breaks during the day.

Watch Mai and crew do some squats. And don’t miss a short workout with a weighed hula hoop. It’s harder than it looks!

Virginia Mason Memorial recognized as a national leader in safe sleep for babies

Dec. 19, 2017

Contact: Rebecca Teagarden, Memorial Communications: (509) 577-5051

YAKIMA — Virginia Mason Memorial is excited to announce that it has been recognized as a Cribs for Kids National Silver Certified Safe Sleep Leader. The Cribs for Kids National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification program awards recognition to hospitals that demonstrate a commitment to reducing infant sleep-related deaths by promoting and educating on best safe sleep practices. VMM is one of the first hospitals in Washington to receive this title.

Health care facilities that achieve silver-level certification have demonstrated a commitment to community leadership for best practices and education on infant safe sleep through the development of a hospital policy, staff training, parent education, modeling through a wearable blanket program, and a pledge to participate in ongoing audits. VMM achieved the designation through its commitment to reduce infant sleep-related deaths by establishing a hospital infant safe-sleep policy, and modeling infant safe sleep throughout the hospital.

“Safe sleep for babies is a top priority,” said Jenifer Rhea, assistant nurse manager of Memorial’s Family Birth Place. “Education is crucial to ensuring a safe sleep environment for babies, and being certified ensures that we are following best practices.”

The Cribs for Kids National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification program awards recognition to hospitals that demonstrate a commitment to reducing infant sleep-related deaths by suffocation by promoting best safe sleep practices and by educating on infant sleep safety.  By becoming certified, a hospital is demonstrating that it is committed to being a community leader and is pro-actively eliminating as many sleep-related deaths as possible.


To be designated a Silver Certified Safe Sleep Leader, in addition to the above criteria, the hospital must make use of wearable blankets in the Well-Baby Nursery and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, as applicable, and record progress and report successes.
“Sleep-Related Death results in the loss of more than 3,500 infants every year in the U.S.,” said Michael H. Goodstein, M.D., neonatologist and medical director of research at Cribs for Kids. “We know that consistent education can have a profound effect on infant mortality, and this program is designed to encourage safe sleep education and to recognize those hospitals that are taking an active role in reducing these preventable deaths.”
Since 1998, Cribs for Kids has been making an impact on the rates of babies dying of accidental, sleep-related death in unsafe sleeping environments by educating parents and caregivers on the importance of practicing safe sleep for infants by providing Graco Pack ‘n Play portable cribs to families who, otherwise, cannot afford a safe place for their babies to sleep. Cribs for Kids currently has more than 800 licensed partners throughout the United States that implement its infant safe sleep program in their communities.


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For more information on the Cribs for Kids National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification program visit, or call Tiffany Price, the Director of Hospital and Community Initiatives @ 412-322-5680 ext.112.


About Virginia Mason Memorial

Virginia Mason Memorial, part of the Virginia Mason Health System, is a 226-bed, acute-care, nonprofit, community hospital serving Central Washington’s Yakima Valley. Virginia Mason Memorial includes primary care practices and specialty care services including high-quality cardiac care; cancer care through North Star Lodge; breast health at `Ohana Mammography Center; acute hospice and respite care at Cottage in the Meadow, winner of the Circle of Life Award from the American Hospital Association for innovative palliative and end-of-life care; pain management at Water’s Edge; an advanced NICU unit, the only place in Central Washington that offers specialty care for at-risk infants; advanced services for children with special health care needs at Children’s Village; and The Memorial Foundation, a separate 501c(3) organization that raises funds for innovative health care programs in the Yakima Valley (


Yakima doctor gives birth; 14 hours later delivers her patient’s twins

Photo: Dr. Hilary Conway holds her new daughter, Verna Mai

Dr. Hilary Conway woke up early Wednesday, Dec. 13, to feed her newborn daughter, Verna Mai, from her bed at Virginia Mason Memorial hospital.

Then she checked her phone. There was a text. One of the doctor’s patients wrote to say that her water broke and she was on her way in deliver twins. Early. Also at Virginia Mason Memorial hospital.

So what did Dr. Hilary Conway do? She got out of bed at 3 a.m., put on a pair of scrubs and went to find her patient. A mere 14 hours after giving birth.

“I walked out into the hallway and asked if she was here, and they said, ‘She’s right next door.’ I thought to myself, ‘I got this.’ ”

Dr. Conway and Katie Moss headed to the operating room, and twins Luke and Soren were born at 4:50 a.m. and 5:38 a.m.

“I would have been really sad to have missed this baby,” said Dr. Conway, an OB/GYN with Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic. “It was a magical thing that she was here and right next to me.” Her family, with husband Dr. Joel Pearson, is now four with new daughter Verna Mai and son Thor, 22 months.

“Dr. Conway and I became really close,” said patient Katie. “She helped us become pregnant, so it’s very personal.” The Moss family, with Katie and her husband, Daniel, have become five with son Gabriel, 4, and the twins.

“We’re really excited they’re here before Christmas!” said Katie.

Photo: Dr. Hilary Conway holds her new daughter, Verna Mai

Charred butternut squash enchiladas with black beans and kale, blue corn tortillas, and roasted poblano cashew cream

Charred butternut squash enchiladas with black beans and kale, blue corn tortillas, and roasted poblano cashew cream











Jason B. Patel

Clinician sponsor
Dr. Yami Cazorla-Lancaster




Why did you choose these ingredients?
We wanted to make sure we highlighted local, sustainable ingredients grown on our Virginia Mason Memorial’s onsite cafe garden and supplement additional ingredients from our lower valley’s Imperial’s Garden, a family-owned-and-operated produce company in Wapato, Wash. With the fall harvest of our butternut squash and baby kale, we wanted to make an authentic Mexican dish that showcases our diverse community.

Where did you get your ingredients?
We grew the butternut squash and baby kale in our onsite garden, and the peppers came from a local farm in our valley.
What is the best thing about your job?
What I Like most about my job is the variety of hats I get to wear throughout the day. Managing a department of over 50 people, I am always running around trying to help where I am needed. No two days are ever the same and I enjoy being kept on my toes. Dr. Yami and I have worked together on plant-based menu ideas for the café, Early Learning Center, physician catering events, and other hospital-sponsored events. She is the best!

Watch Chef Jason Patel and Dr. Yami Cazorla-Lancaster discuss bringing their culinary and clinical skills to the table, collaborating to create mouthwatering plant-based recipes.


Did you know?
Serving plant-based meals that do not include animal products can help reduce antibiotic use and reduce your environmental footprint. However, medically important antibiotics are sometimes used as pesticides in conventional fruit production, especially apples, pears, and oranges. Buying certified organic produce will ensure antibiotics were not used. Learn more about antibiotic use in agriculture >>