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North Oaks Initiatives Honored by Louisiana Society for Hospital Public Relations and Marketing

The Louisiana Society for Hospital Public Relations and Marketing (LSHPRM) honored four North Oaks Health System initiatives as best in state at their 30th Annual Pelican Awards Program on Friday, Oct. 21 at the Crowne Plaza Executive Center in Baton Rouge.

The society also presented a Golden Pelican Award to North Oaks Communications Director Melanie Lanaux Zaffuto as Public Relations Practitioner of the Year.

North Oaks earned top honors in several divisions, including external newsletter, internal magazine, public relations campaigns and “project on a shoestring.”

Heartbeat, a quarterly publication for North Oaks employees and volunteers, won a Pelican Award in the internal newsletter or magazine category.

Physician Monthly, published for members of the North Oaks medical staff, also received a Pelican Award in the internal newsletter or magazine category.

In the area of public relations, a Pelican Award went to the North Oaks-Livingston Parish Medical Complex “You’re the Reason We’re Here” Grand Opening campaign. Designed as a build-up to the opening of the complex in Jan. 2011, the campaign culminated in a community-wide celebration and included oak tree plantings, business and medical community previews, a ribbon cutting and tours, a health fair and student art contests. Located just off I-12 at the Satsuma/Colyell exit, the 49,000-square-foot facility focuses on convenient, efficient and personal outpatient diagnostic and treatment services, including cardiology, radiology, laboratory and rehabilitation. The complex also is home to a walk-in clinic, primary care clinic, orthopedic specialty center and a multispecialty group physician practice with more than 20 physicians on staff.

The health system’s “Name Our Robot Contest” earned a Pelican Award as a project that garnered “big results with little resources.” Held in conjunction with the Louisiana Children’s Discovery Center and its visitors, the Hammond High Magnet School Torbotics Team and the Bayou Builders FIRST® LEGO® League, the contest determined the name for the hospital’s latest generation daVinci® Si robotic surgical system. The contest promotion described the robot as a device that doctors use “to help patients feel better sooner with less ouch and smaller scars” and as a way “to get home quicker after surgery.” The Torbotics Team and Bayou Builders judged the contest, and the winning name “Oaklee” was announced during a hands-on demo day at the Discovery Center. The event was attended by the hospital’s robotics team and physicians and more than 100 children and their parents.

A 20-year veteran of the health system, Zaffuto brought home the Golden Pelican for Public Relations Practitioner of the Year for consistently demonstrating exceptional leadership in her role. Her nomination described her 2010 effort to organize and implement seven grassroots outreach initiatives across 32 days to generate awareness of the devastating impact of Medicaid reimbursement cuts to community hospitals. Ms. Zaffuto’s efforts contributed to North Oaks’ recognition by the American Hospital Association as the 2011 Louisiana “Grassroots Champion.”

LSHPRM is an affiliate society of the Louisiana Hospital Association. Each year, LSHPRM sponsors the Pelican Awards to recognize and encourage improvement in quality, effectiveness and impact of hospital communications, public relations and marketing. This year’s Pelican Awards were judged by members of the Mississippi Hospital Association based on the criteria of objective, planning, research, strategy, implementation, results and creativity.

For more information about North Oaks Health System, please call (985) 230-6647, (225) 686-4885.

About Louisiana Society for Hospital Public Relations & Marketing
The Louisiana Society for Hospital Public Relations and Marketing is an affiliate society of the Louisiana Hospital Association. This professional organization is open to hospital marketing and public relations personnel, as well as other marketing and public relations professionals in any health care-related field.

About North Oaks Health System
North Oaks Health System is a community-based hospital organization with nearly 3,000 employees, physicians and volunteers, serving the Florida Parishes since 1960. Facilities include the 259-bed North Oaks Medical Center, 27-bed North Oaks Rehabilitation Hospital, North Oaks Heart Health Center (located within North Oaks Medical Center), North Oaks Diagnostic Center, North Oaks-Livingston Parish Medical Complex, North Oaks Hospice Agency, North Oaks Outpatient Rehabilitation Services, Magnolia Obstetrics & Gynecology, North Oaks Cardiology, North Oaks ENT & Allergy, North Oaks Family Medicine Clinic, North Oaks Primary Care Clinics, North Oaks Multispecialty Group, North Oaks Neurology Clinic, North Oaks Neurosurgery Clinic, North Oaks Occupational Health Services Clinic, North Oaks Orthopedic Specialty Center, North Oaks Physiatry Clinic, North Oaks Pulmonology, North Oaks Rheumatology Clinic, North Oaks Specialty Clinic, North Oaks Walk-In Clinics and Northshore Internal Medicine Associates. For more information, please call (985) 230-6647 or (225) 686-4885.