December 2, 2023

Press Release

Three Organizations Honored with Governor's Sterling and Georgia Oglethorpe Awards

| 5/9/2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida Sterling Council today announced the Florida Department of Health in Collier County, Florida and WellStar Paulding Hospital in Hiram, Georgia are recipients of the prestigious Governor's Sterling and Georgia Oglethorpe Award for 2019. In addition, the Orange County Public Schools Human Resources Division was awarded the Governor’s Sterling Sustained Excellence Award.

The coveted awards will be bestowed at the 2019 Governor's Sterling Award Banquet at the JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes on Friday, May 31, 2019.

2019 Governor’s Sterling Award and 2019 Georgia Oglethorpe Award

Combined, the two state award processes have recognized excellence for 50 years, honoring organizations and businesses that have successfully achieved performance excellence within their management and operations. Last year, the Florida Sterling Council partnered with the Georgia Oglethorpe Award to administer its processes.

Florida Department of Health in Collier County

The Florida Department of Health in Collier County (DOH-Collier) is headquartered in Naples, Florida. DOH-Collier has 200 employees who provide services from five locations, including the Immokalee Clinic. Collier County has a full-time population of about 358,000 that increases by 20% from October to May with seasonal residents and migrant farm workers. The county is also host to 1.78 million annual visitors. DOH-Collier is the lead agency providing core public health services within the county. These services include statutorily mandated services and other federal, state, and locally funded programs, including clinical and nutritional services, WIC, community health planning and statistics, emergency preparedness and response, environmental health, infectious disease services, and vital statistics. Hurricane Irma made landfall in Collier County on September 10, 2017. At the county’s only special needs shelter, 120 employees cared for over 700 people with special medical needs around-the-clock.

  • Overall Health Outcomes has remained at number two among Florida’s 67 counties for each of the past five years, while Overall Health Factors has improved from number eight in 2014 to number three in 2018. 
  • For the fourth straight year, the Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island, Florida, metro area had the highest wellbeing across 156 U.S. communities, based on data collected in 2017 and 2018 as part of the Gallup National Health and Well-Being Index and just 8 years ago, in 2011, it ranked 73rd in the nation.
  • DOH-Collier is among the United States top performers, as identified by the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation County Health Rankings, in the categories of adult smokers, adult obesity, and premature death.
  • The HIV program increased the number of cases linked to care within 90 days from 82% in 2017 to 85% in 2018, and more importantly by implementing a new test and treat protocol, the program reduced the average number of days to link a person to care from 13 to less than 5.

The Department builds and maintains its relationship with community partners through a robust system of service and leadership on many community coalitions, taskforces and committees to achieve its Values of ICARE – Innovation, Collaboration, Accountability, Responsiveness and Excellence.

The Florida Dept. of Health in Collier County is a first-time recipient of the Governor’s Sterling Award. It is the fifth Florida Department of Health county organization to be recognized.

WellStar Paulding Hospital

WellStar Paulding Hospital is a part of the nationally recognized WellStar Health System, a non-profit health system, which includes 11 hospitals, 15 urgent care centers, 19 imaging centers, three health parks and more than 2,600 physicians throughout Georgia. 

Established in 1957, the hospital functioned independently as a 25-bed facility before joining WellStar Health System in 1994. In 2014, WellStar Paulding Hospital relocated to a state-of-the-art, 295,000 square foot facility and later expanded in 2016 to 112 beds. The hospital’s service area consists of Paulding, Douglas and Cobb counties.

Inpatient services include general medicine, surgery, critical care, telemetry and more. Outpatient services include imaging, non-invasive cardiology, infusion, rehab, GI lab, surgery, oncology and adult and pediatric emergency services. WellStar Health System is recognized nationally as an Employer of Choice and is featured on FORTUNE 100’s “Best Companies to Work For” list and Working Mother Magazine’s Best Companies list due to its innovative employee benefits.

The hospital has consistently demonstrated sustained high levels of performance that exceed relevant comparisons in measures of its core competencies: patient safety and workforce engagement; and financial and market performance.

  • Patient safety: The mortality rate decreased from 0.53 in fiscal year 2017 to 0.43 in fiscal years 2018 and 2019, with year-to-date exceeding the Truven top decile rate of 0.7.
  • Patient safety: The percent of patients with an ischemic stroke, or a hemorrhagic stroke, or stroke not otherwise specified who receive VTE Prophylaxis the day of, or the day after admission, sustained high performance of 100% in fiscal year 2016, 97% in fiscal year 2017, and 100% in fiscal year 2018, exceeding the American Hospital Association top decile performance of 98%.
  • Workforce engagement: Key measures and engagement drivers demonstrate high performance in responses to survey questions, with performance meeting or exceeding top 100 places to work benchmarks including responses by staff to being treated fairly regardless of gender, race, or age, and executives fully embody the best characteristics of our company.
  • Financial and market performance: Financial measures continue to exceed the 2016 Moody’s Aa rated hospitals year over year. General medicine and general surgery market share have increased from 32% in fiscal year 2016 to 40% in fiscal year 2017 demonstrating the ability to meet the needs of their neighbors.

WellStar Paulding Hospital is a first-time recipient of the Florida Sterling Georgia Oglethorpe Award.

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