Skip to content

Members in the News – May 2021

Robotic Technology for Spine Surgery Available at Centennial Hills, Henderson Hospitals
To provide advanced spine surgical care for patients throughout southern Nevada, Centennial Hills and Henderson hospitals now offer the Mazor X Stealth™ Edition Robotic Guidance Platform. The inaugural procedures at both hospitals occurred in March 2021.

The technology allows surgeons to create a customized surgery plan by using a CT-based 3D models of the patient’s spine prior to surgery. As part of the pre-operative planning, the personalized model allows the physician to determine exactly where implants should be placed.

During surgery, the robotic arms use precise navigation to place and support the implants. Simultaneously, the surgeon can use real-time imaging feedback to ensure the complex spine surgery is proceeding as planned.

“Mazor X Stealth Edition is an amazing, innovative platform that allows us to offer the latest surgical options for patients who need spine surgery,” said Kevin R. Sharif, MD, who performed the first case utilizing the new equipment at Henderson Hospital in March. “This technology combines computer navigation and robotics to deliver safe, reliable, and precise minimally invasive spine surgery in the Las Vegas Valley.”

“Surgical robotics is not the future – it is very much here, at the present time, and I believe it has become the standard of care at Centennial Hills Hospital Medical Center,” said I. Michael Schneier, MD, who performed the first case at Centennial Hills Hospital last month.

Benefits of the technology include reduced exposure to radiation because of fewer needs for X-ray images to verify the placement of implants; a smaller and more precise area of operating on the spine due to the 3D imagery; an anticipated faster recovery time; and lower rates of infection.

Conditions and Medical Procedures
Surgeons may use the Mazor X Stealth robotic surgery system to treat multiple conditions that require precise positioning of screws or other implants, particularly in lumbar and thoracic spinal fusions. Some conditions that can be treated include:
Degenerative disc disease
Spinal fractures
Spinal implants
Spinal stenosis
Spine deformity
Spine fusion
Vertebrae fractures
Walking or movement deformities

VASNHS reaches 50,000 dose milestone, sets plan for future of vaccine clinic
VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System (VASNHS) has reached another milestone in its administration of 50,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines.

Since giving the first dose of the vaccine on Dec. 16, VASNHS has fully vaccinated over 24,000 Veterans with either the Pfizer, Moderna or Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccination rate for Veterans who receive their care from VASNHS is 42.35%. The facility has also vaccinated 95.90% of health care workers and staff. This puts VASNHS above the national VA average of 82.13%

“It is our mission to offer vaccinations to every Veteran, spouse, and caregiver,” said William J. Caron, VASNHS director/CEO. “We have come a long way toward that goal in reaching 50,000 doses.”

Nationwide, VA has administered more than 5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine, with over 2.5 million individuals fully vaccinated.

Additionally, to accommodate the transition back to normal health care services, the North Las Vegas VA Medical Center will change the location of the COVID-19 vaccine point-of-dispensing clinic from the Auditorium to conference room 1A139. This will not impact Veterans’ ability to get their COVID-19 vaccine by appointment or walk-in.

Veterans currently enrolled in care can arrange their COVID-19 vaccine from VASNHS and in the following ways:

-Veterans, caregivers, spouses, and CHAMPVA beneficiaries can go to to sign up to receive a vaccine from VA. Registering will also give users regular updates about VA’s vaccine rollout process. After registering through this site, users are also eligible for a walk-in vaccine at the North Las Vegas VA Medical Center.
-Veterans can also sign up for an appointment by texting the word “Vaccine” to 53079, and VEText will start the direct scheduling process.

  • Walk-in vaccines are available from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays at the North Las Vegas VA Medical Center. (Please note: Vaccines are on a first-come, first-served basis, and based on demand, Veterans should be prepared for a brief wait prior to receiving their vaccine).
  • Vaccinations at all other VASNHS sites of care are currently by appointment only. Enrolled Veterans may receive a text via VEText that will allow them to schedule their COVID-19 vaccine appointment or can schedule an appointment by calling (702) 791-9185 between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays (Note: This is a reservation line only).
    Veterans seeking additional information can sign up to get updated information through VA’s COVID-19 Vaccine Keep Me Informed tool, visit the VA Coronavirus Vaccine FAQs webpage, contact their care team, or visit the VASNHS website.ATTENTION MEDIA: For queries or more information regarding this release, please email or call VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System Public Affairs at (702) 791-9000 extensions 14436, 19003 or 19004.