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MUSC Rumor Mill separates fact from fiction 

401K and 403B
It has been rumored that some employees are now eligible to receive an employer match to their 401K or 403B. Is this true and, if so, under what circumstances are we eligible to receive that employer matching contribution.
Answer: While employees always have the ability to defer additional dollars (e.g., bonus checks) into the 401K and 403B themselves, there is no employer match per se. Each time employees' contribute 6.5 percent of their pay to either the state pension plan or the optional retirement plan, the medical center is required to send the retirement system 12.63 percent of each employees’ pay—this match is more generous than just about every other employer in the area and there are therefore no additional dollars available to apply to the supplemental retirement programs.

Dress code
I hear that the nursing staff is so short that they have allowed  registered nurses to wear what they want, especially on the weekends. I have seen firsthand that nurse managers see this attire and say nothing.
Answer: No exceptions have been made to the Personal Appearance Policy. It is the managers’ responsibility to ensure staff follow all policies and procedures of the medical center.

I heard that nurses in another unit received a sizeable bonus ($2,000) for doing their job. If this is true, why do all units not receive bonuses?
Answer: The medical center’s Human Resources policy No. 15, compensation, outlines a provision for bonus and incentive pay. Human Resources assists departments in the development and implementation of all bonus and incentive plans. For additional information refer to Human Resource policy No. 15 or contact Lynn Campbell, Employment and Compensation manager (792-1684).

Holiday pay
I heard that for the holiday pay, registered nurses get $5 more and technicians only get $2 more. Is this true? Technicians have to work the same hours on the same holidays.
Answer: The medical center periodically conducts market surveys and establishes holiday differentials based on data received for various job categories. These rates may vary by job category.

Holiday pay
What is the deal with the holiday pay schedules? It seems that someone has not thought through when the actual holidays are. For example: I worked 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. on Wednesday night, Thanksgiving eve, and was at the hospital for almost eight hours on Thanksgiving day (left work at 7:45 a.m.). I then went home and slept for six hours of the holiday. I received no holiday pay. Now, for Christmas and New Years, the same thing is happening. The hardest times to get people to work are not being considered holidays for pay purposes.
Answer: The medical center Human Resources policy No. 15, Compensation, section L. Holiday differential, specifies that “holiday differential will be authorized for eligible hourly-paid (nonexempt) employees whose work shifts begin during the designated holiday.” Contact your manager or Human Resources for additional assistance.

Food service in ART
What types of food service will be available in Ashley River Tower?
Answer: The ART cafeteria will feature a traditional hot line offering a wide variety of entrees, vegetables and starches. There will be a heavy emphasis on “Wellness & You” selections. There also will be a full service grill, pizza and deli stations featuring core items and daily specials available. Pre-packaged, upscale salads, sandwiches and desserts will be available for customers on the run. A Starbucks retail store will be located in the front of the building at street level.

Tuition assistance
I was told that MUSC employees were able to get up to $7,500 a year for tuition assistance with any health care field they were interested in. I was told by someone else that this was not entirely true, but that we get that money only if the courses we are looking to take are in our current field of employment.
Answer: MUSC does have a tuition reimbursement policy for its employees. As with any policy of this type, there are limitations and exclusions. Refer to Human Resource policy No. 17 for details that may apply to your particular case. For information, visit

Merry Christmas
It has been said that it is frowned upon by MUSC/MUHA administration to tell patrons “Merry Christmas or “Happy Hanukkah.” This is not politically correct? Instead “happy holidays” should be said so as not to offend people who celebrate nothing during the holidays.
Answer: MUHA has Standards of Behavior but no specific guidelines (aside from Standards of Behavior) have been issued concerning this matter and the administration has not “frowned upon” anything of this nature.

Express bus stop
Is it true that MUSC/MUHA is working with CARTA to get the express buses to stop closer to Courtenay Street for the employees that will be working in ART?
Answer: There are no plans at this time to move the CARTA Express stop closer to ART. Options have been discussed with CARTA, however none yet have proven viable without compromising the basic purpose of the express service.

Hagood bus route
I have heard that only MUSC employees are permitted to ride the shuttle buses from Hagood. However, while riding both  CARTA and the Hagood bus to work, I have seen numerous times that Roper employees are on the Hagood bus route and get off in front of Family Medicine then cross the street to Roper. How come there is nothing being done about this? What does the hospital say about this complaint?
Answer: The MUSC shuttle buses are restricted to MUSC employees as well as the patients and visitors who are using our facilities. Steps have been taken  to ensure Roper employees are not using the MUSC shuttle buses to include additional signage at MUSC bus stops as well as educational efforts with the MUSC shuttle bus drivers. In addition to MUSC buses, CARTA buses also are being used to supplement MUSC's shuttle bus system. That is being done to respond to a growing demand for increased service. It should be noted that CARTA buses are open to the public. MUSC cannot restrict rider ship on the CARTA buses, thus, Roper employees parking near the Hagood parking lot could legally ride a CARTA bus from that location. However, if you observe Roper employees riding the MUSC buses, contact John Runyon at 792-2467 or e-mail with the date, time and MUSC bus driver’s name.

Holiday pay
Some people have been discussing that holiday pay does not start at midnight of the eve, but begins at 7 a.m. on the day. Isn’t that cheating the night shift? Only day shift is entitled to holiday pay?
Answer: The medical center Human Resources policy No. 15 specifies that “holiday differential will be authorized for eligible hourly-paid (nonexempt) employees whose work shifts begin during the designated holiday.”

Handicap parking
The City of Charleston noted that MUSC/MUHA employees are abusing residential restricted parking and meter parking by using handicap parking permits when the employees are obviously not handicapped (able to walk more than six blocks to work). MUSC/MUHA stated that this was not allowed and would take action against the use of handicap parking permits. Rumor has it that this is not the case, that MUSC/MUHA have no intention of monitoring this, the statement was just to appease the city. Is this true?
Answer: Violations of parking meter time and residential parking restrictions are violations of Charleston city ordinances and not South Carolina  state law. MUSC Public Safety are state law enforcement officers and do not have jurisdiction to enforce these ordinances, only the city may do so. MUSC has made the city aware of the continuing concerns.

Reproduced from


Friday, Jan. 11, 2008
Catalyst Online is published weekly, updated as needed and improved from time to time by the MUSC Office of Public Relations for the faculty, employees and students of the Medical University of South Carolina. Catalyst Online editor, Kim Draughn, can be reached at 792-4107 or by email, Editorial copy can be submitted to Catalyst Online and to The Catalyst in print by fax, 792-6723, or by email to To place an ad in The Catalyst hardcopy, call Island Publications at 849-1778, ext. 201.