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Published on March 02, 2011

Abington Health Recognizes Physician and Nurse Innovators

From left to right: Arnold Zaslow, chair, Innovators’ Circle
Executive Leadership and Allocation Committee;
Larry Barmat, M.D., Physician Honoree Award Recipient;
Barbara Schmock, R.N., Nurse Honoree Award Recipient;
and G. Chris Christensen, D.O., chair, Innovators’ Circle
Clinical Advisory Committee.

ABINGTON, PA (March 2, 2011) — Abington Health recently held its 2010 Physician and Nurse Honoree Event in recognition of individuals who have established a legacy of developing and implementing inventive solutions to healthcare challenges through its Innovators’ Circle Program. This program provides seed money to Abington Health physicians, nurses and staff for innovative programs and creative approaches to improve patient care and treatments.

Larry I. Barmat, M.D., of Abington Reproductive Medicine, was named Physician Honoree and Barbara A. Schmock, R.N., was named Nurse Honoree.  Barmat is the recipient of two Innovators’ Circle grants. His first grant focused on novel mechanisms to treat endometriosis and prevent its recurrence. A second grant is currently undergoing analysis to determine if harp therapy reduces stress levels and improves clinical outcomes in patients undergoing in vitro fertilization and embryo transfer.  

Barmat is a reproductive endocrinologist, surgeon and scientific researcher who has developed and conducted extensive research on the use of Autologous Endometrial Coculture to improve in vitro fertilization (IVF) pregnancy rates. He heads the Donor Egg Program of The Toll Center for Reproductive Sciences at Abington Memorial Hospital.

Schmock is a staff nurse in the operating room at Abington Memorial Hospital whose passion for improving patient care inspired an evidence-based research project for which she received an Innovators’ Circle award in 2007. She implemented the Sacred Space Environment, which combines nurse caring behaviors (presence, touch, listening) with healing environmental modalities (soft lighting, warm room, soothing music, wall murals) to create a healing environment for all surgical patients. As principal investigator, Schmock also developed the Sacred Space Assessment Instrument and was published in The International Journal for Human Caring. The Sacred Space Environment Model of Care is being expanded to other operating rooms and has the potential to influence nursing practices regionally, nationally and globally.

The Innovators’ Circle program is an internal foundation at Abington Health that invests in innovative people and ideas with great potential for the future of healthcare. Overseen by an Executive Leadership and Allocation Committee of community leaders and a Clinical Advisory Committee comprised of leading Abington physicians and nurses, the Innovators Circle Program has funded 45 innovative projects since 2005.

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