Success Stories

The following success stories are from patients and families whose lives have been touched by Specialty Hospital. Their heartfelt stories are a reflection of our commitment to providing patients with a warm and nurturing environment that fosters respect, trust, reassurance and healing.

Unfortunately, our father had to be in a rehab facility.  He was doing very poorly and has a trach, a feeding tube and a ventilator.  We did not think he would make it.  In the hospital, he kept getting infection after infection.  Since his transfer to Specialty Hospital of Central Jersey, located at 600 River Avenue, Lakewood, New Jersey he has received the utmost professional care including outstanding medical staff, nursing staff, respiratory therapists, social work staff, kind and caring support staff with Bikur Cholim services that support this unbelievable institution.

We do not believe that there is another facility like this. They have saved our father’s life, helped our mother who is not young deal effectively with all the issues and have been in constant touch with our family.

Mr. Wieder, the director and Dr. Leibowitz, the chief of staff, are amazing people with an incredible staff.  Dr. Smitha is a very involved, caring physician and Miriam Rotberg is one of their social workers who is sensitive and very compassionate.  Everyone is trying to help our family navigate this difficult situation.

We would highly recommend this facility for anyone who needs it.

Nick Fornarotto

Mr. Nick Fornarotto was cared for at Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch after a critical event which resulted in him being ventilator dependent and with a feeding tube.  He was stabilized and sent to Specialty Hospital of Central Jersey for an extended hospital stay.  He spent several months between acute rehab and MMC but eventually transferred home and started aggressive rehab at MMC.   Here he sits in the waiting area outside cardiac rehab where he goes faithfully 3 times a week for an hour.  Nick has resumed driving, walking independently, eating with only a sodium restriction.  He worked a fundraiser this May in West Long Branch, cooking for all the volunteers at the Community Center.  A tradition started when the Michael Thorne race began 15 years ago paying tribute to a fellow firefighter.  It was a milestone in his recovery.  While he doesn’t remember much during his stay at the LTACH, he is very appreciative of all of the caregivers who contributed to his recovery.   According to his wife and I quote:  “Nick always smelled good when I visited him at Specialty Hospital which signaled to her that we were taking good care of him.” They send good wishes and appreciation for our piece of his recovery.

Mrs. MS

Mrs. MS, whose mother Mrs. T was a resident of Specialty Hospital before she passed away, called to tell me how wonderful a place LTAC is. She said that every staff member was so respectful and knowledgeable, from the doctors and nurses, to the auxiliary staff. Everyone was available to answer questions and all medical matters were handled within the parameters of Jewish Law without hesitation. Down to the last day, Specialty Hospital made a group effort to make Mrs. T’s life comfortable and to accommodate her family’s wish to be with her.

“Mary Anzalone — Beyond the Vent”

What started as a night out in Atlantic City quickly turned into a prolonged hospitalization for Mary Anzalone, a 66-year-old female from Manchester, NJ. She had gone out to Atlantic City and when she returned home, she had chest pain which prompted a visit to Community Medical Center in Toms River, NJ. She had a cardiac workup and was found to have multiple vessel disease. Her clinical status worsened. She needed a lifesaving intra-aortic balloon pump and was transferred to Newark Beth Israel Hospital for emergent cardiac intervention. She survived the perilous procedure and was maintained on the ventilator. Unfortunately, she was not able to wean from the ventilator. She required transfer, once again, to attempt to save not only her life, but her quality of life. She arrived to Ocean County’s Specialty Hospital of Central Jersey, a facility geared to deal with the arduous task of weaning difficult cases off the ventilator. The highly specialized staff quickly turned this dismal situation into a happy outcome.

She was weaned successfully from the ventilator and was able to start her initial steps towards a full recovery. She was able to ambulate and was transferred to her last stay at Health South in Toms River to get her life back. Mary spent the following week there to gain further strength and then went home.

Mary Anzalone is now ─ Beyond the vent

“Richard Delauro — Beyond the Vent”

Richard Delauro was enjoying retirement, and in his usual state of health, until he started complaining of chest pain during any strenuous activity. This prompted him to visit his cardiologist in late May of 2016. His cardiologist recommended a stress test initially which was abnormal and led to a cardiac catheterization, revealing multiple vessel disease. He was no stranger to surgery, but this would be open heart surgery with 4 vessel coronary artery bypass. He was taken immediately to the operating room at St. Mary’s Hospital on May 28, 2016. His hospital course was complicated by a sternal wound dehiscence. Unfortunately, the patient remained ventilator dependent and required a tracheostomy.

He was referred to Specialty Hospital of Central Jersey and their team who are specialized in weaning complex medical patients off the ventilator. The team was able to successfully wean Mr. Delauro off the ventilator and they were able to remove his tracheostomy device. He was then started on physical therapy and was, in turn, referred to his next challenge ─ acute rehabilitation at Shore Rehab to regain his quality of life. Another day and another success story at Specialty Hospital of Central Jersey.

Richard Delauro is now ─ Beyond the vent.

“Mary Doyle — Beyond the Vent”

When Mary Doyle was presented at CentraState Medical Center with abdominal pain, the last thing she thought would happen to her was to become ventilator dependent. She had been complaining of right-sided abdominal pain and a CAT scan was ordered, revealing a stone blocking her ureter causing her kidney to swell. She had to be seen by the urology team who inserted a stent to preserve her kidney. Unfortunately, she got terribly ill and went into septic shock. She was placed on a ventilator. She clinically improved after antibiotics but remained ventilator dependent and had a tracheostomy.

She was transferred to Specialty Hospital of Central Jersey, where the clinical team specializes in dealing with patients that have become ventilator dependent. Her stay at SHCJ was initially complicated by episodes of difficulty maintaining oxygenation. Dr. Lebowitz, leader of the clinical team, was able to discern that the trach had become useless and astutely changed the trach at the bedside. It was smooth sailing from that point forward. Not only was she weaned from the ventilator, but she was also de-cannulated and began aggressive physical, occupational and speech therapy. She was then transferred to Shore Rehabilitation Hospital at Ocean Medical Center in Brick, where she continues on the road to complete recovery.

Mary Doyle is now — Beyond the vent