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MUSCMedical LinksCharleston LinksArchivesCatalyst AdvertisersSeminars and EventsResearch StudiesPublic RelationsResearch GrantsMUSC home pageCommunity HappeningsCampus NewsApplause


MUSC Rumor Mill separates fact from fiction

MUSC goes private
I heard that due to the budget restraints and overwhelming amount of paper work that there is a behind the door consideration for the rest of the university to break away  as Medical University Hospital Authority did. True or false?
Answer: False. There are no such discussions going on either behind or in front of any doors. There is some discussion about whether the legislature may be willing to grant some regulatory relief, especially in these challenging financial times in order to make operations more efficient and save money.

Parking tickets
MUH has been giving an increased amount of parking tickets on night and weekend shifts in the Courtenay Street garage and in front of Charleston Memorial Hospital recently. Some employees have been parking in the same spot since ART opened in February. Is this an attempt to recoup some of the money MUSC lost, a new Public Safety officer or just a crackdown on parking?
Answer: If an employee feels he or she was cited in error, an appeal can be made during one of the regularly-scheduled hearing hours at the Office of Parking Management or by special appointment with the hearing officer. For questions about after hours and weekend parking locations for employees, call 792-6770 or 478-7022.

UMA employees and budget cuts
No rumor, just looking for some clarification. Some UMA employees are wondering how the budget cuts are going to effect them? There are so many discrepancies between information given in writing and verbally, regarding differences from college, hospital, state, private, etc., employees. We are expected to perform as big supportive family in crisis. I’m all for that, and for the patients, but there needs to be better clarification as to how we are being affected as separate departments and entities as we are obviously not funded/operated the same.
Answer: On Nov. 24 MUSC President Ray Greenberg, M.D., Ph.D., issued a Broadcast Message to university faculty, staff and students explaining measures being taken to address the reduction in state appropriations. Greenberg also held a press conference explaining the university’s plan which includes four days of furlough for 1,200 employees and the elimination of some positions, most of which are occupied by temporary employees. Understandably, Greenberg’s announce-ment will create some confusion and a lot of questions among UMA employees. The furlough announcement by Greenberg does not include UMA staff. UMA staff are paid with funds generated by patient care services and not state appropriated funds.

Cleaning times
Who is responsible for deciding which areas of the hospital are cleaned and the timing of the cleaning? The reason I ask is because I’m sick of the main entrance and public and handicapped restrooms beside the entrance being blocked off at 7:30 p.m. during peak time of staff leaving and visitors coming. Although I’m an employee, I feel this is very unwelcoming to the public and will not encourage potential customers to utilize our services in the future, especially as the housekeeping staff can be very rude if you have to cross the clean area to get to the restrooms.
Answer: Currently daily cleaning of the public rest rooms for the main lobby is provided on first and second shift with policing throughout the day and evening. Floor care for the lobby is typically provided late second, early third shift.  It is possible  the project work is being performed at an inconvenient time. The cleaning staff  will try to push that to later hours in the future. With the volume of activity in that area, multiple policing and routine cleaning of the rest rooms is necessary and will continue.

Flu shot solicitation
Isn’t it a HIPAA violation for the nurses to camp out in the hallway and yell, “Have you had your flu shot?” to all the employees walking by? The answer to their question is my business. I feel like I’m being rude if I don’t answer. I appreciate them being there and offering, but I don’t like being questioned like that in public.
Answer: The single best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated. The vaccine can help you from getting sick but just as important the flu vaccine decreases the exposure our patients who are at high risk for complications. It is not a HIPAA violation to be reminded whether you have had your flu shot and you are not required to respond. I am sorry you are offended by the approach to ensure health care providers are vaccinated.

Christmas tree lights
Why are we lighting a tree for a month when the university’s budget keeps getting cut.
Answer: While MUSC wants to preserve the spirit of the holiday season, the staff also wants to conserve energy and save money. Accordingly, staff will explore lighting the tree for a shorter period of time each night and for a shorter number of days.

Movie at Ashley River Tower
I heard that the movie “Dear John” is being filmed at ART. How much money does that generate and where does that money go?
Answer: Some scenes from “Dear John” were filmed at the university and ART. The expenses associated with filming, such as increased security and cleaning, were paid for by the production company. Staff that volunteered to be extras in the movie took paid time off and earned a fee of $56 for eight hours from the production company. As part of the location agreement, MUHA received a check for $6,000 that was donated to the MUSC Stroke program to support patient education as it correlates with one of the conditions featured in the film. While not a lucrative venture, MUSC’s agreement to participate helped bring the production to South Carolina, including a crew of hundreds to live and work in the local and state economies for almost three months.

Wellness Center
I am a new MUSC Wellness Center member. A coworker told me that there are plans to demolish the Wellness Center in order to build a different university building in its footprint, and that the athletic facilities would not be replaced. Can you provide any further information regarding this rumor?
Answer: Promoting the health and fitness of MUSC staff is a high priority. The MUSC Wellness Center is on one of two sites that may be used for phase two, next to ART. The other site is the present location of McClennan Banks/CMH on the Calhoun side of ART.

I heard in an effort to increase employee moral in the setting of financial cutbacks, the deli at ART has cut back portions yet kept the price the same.
Answer: This rumor is unfounded. Portions are the same while prices continue to correspond with offerings.

Are the poinsettias in the cafeteria real?
Answer: The poinsettias in the cafeteria are artificial.

Working in other departments
I’ve been working here for six months  and have been told that I would have to wait a year if I want to work in a different department.
Answer: This is not accurate. Contact Lynn Campbell, employment and compensation manager, 792-1684 or your manager for clarification.

This is not a rumor, but I feel it needs to be addressed. Where has AIDET gone? While walking through the hospital I passed at least 30 MUSC employees. Two spoke to me after I said ‘hello.’ The rest kept racing through the halls. I had two employees not stick around two extra seconds to hold the doors open for me. Employees need to realize that AIDET not only applies to employee/patient contact but employee/employee contact.
Answer: AIDET should be used everywhere in the organization in all interactions with patients, families and  peers/colleagues.

Reproduced from 

Friday, Dec. 19, 2008

The Catalyst Online is published weekly by the MUSC Office of Public Relations for the faculty, employees and students of the Medical University of South Carolina. The Catalyst Online editor, Kim Draughn, can be reached at 792-4107 or by email, Editorial copy can be submitted to The 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.