McLeod Health Seacoast Celebrates 100th Extended Recovery Department Patient


Marianne Mikulicz is surrounded by her care team prior to her discharge from McLeod Health Seacoast.

After surgery, most patients want to know how quickly they can go home. At McLeod Health Seacoast, getting patients home quickly and safely is a priority.

On July 19, 2021, Marianne Mikulicz, was discharged as the 100th patient from the new McLeod Health Seacoast Extended Recovery Department. Mikulicz had undergone a knee replacement performed by Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Eric Heimberger earlier that day and did well enough to be discharged home.

In April 2021, the McLeod Health Clinical Excellence team looked at ways to improve the patient experience, specifically for patients receiving a total hip or total knee replacement. According to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), these procedures can be performed as an inpatient or outpatient, depending on the needs of the patient determined by the physician.

Advances in medical science have provided new techniques in anesthesia, pain management, therapy and other clinical advancements have decreased the amount of time patients need to remain in the hospital to recover. Shorter hospital stays mean decreased risk for hospital acquired infection and promote faster healing in the comfort of the patient’s home with their loved ones.

“I am proud of the work our team has done to improve the patient experience and reduce their length of stay in the hospital,” said Beth Hicks, Director of Nursing. “We are seeing better outcomes for our patients who start moving sooner and discharge within 23 hours of their surgery.”

Not all patients can go home on the same day. Physicians and the clinical team review each patient individually to determine what is in their best interest depending on their health status, comorbidities, and complexity of their surgery.

“Our number one goal is always going to be patient safety,” said Sherrill Nielson, Chief Nursing Officer for McLeod Health Seacoast. “While every patient’s treatment plan looks different, we always want to get our patients back home and on the road to recovery as quickly as possible.”