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Pillars symbolize caring commitment at Family Medicine

by Mary Helen Yarborough
Public Relations
For the staff and clinicians of Family Medicine, establishing its Five Pillars of Excellence was kind of like identifying positions on a football team.
Family Medicine staff show a caring team spirit.
Likening the staff of the Department of Family Medicine to a team, Dana King, M.D., called upon the staff to act as a team and view the current economic crisis as an opportunity for growth and improvement.
“We want to take MUSC Excellence to the next level by adapting the Five Pillars (People, Quality, Service, Growth),” said King. “The university has provided the goals. Now we need to customize and personalize them for the good of our patients.”
King shared a story about Family Medicine employee Joe Greene, who played football for N.C. State University.
“During his time as a football player there, they had a saying, ‘The strength of the pack strengthens the wolf, and the strength of the wolf strengthens the pack,’” King said. “In the Department of Family Medicine, the strength of the whole department (team) strengthens each of us, and the skills and resources and dedication of each of us strengthens the team (department).”
When the staff, managers and King were working on defining the five pillars to their tasks and goals, they learned that identifying the many services and qualities that already exist. The challenge was narrowing everything down to just five symbolic headings, which in their case represent the demonstration of compassion, dignity, care and accessibility to patients from around the area.
The symbols were pulled from two simple words, “We Care,” which formed a type of acronym for how much “we care” means:
WE, as in WElcoming and friendly;
C for quality Care;
A, as in Access; or specifically easy access and availability to patients;
R for Referrals, and a commitment to have all referrals to be prompt and of high quality;
E for Efficiency: maintain a clean, efficient office with excellent through-put, and short waiting times for patients.
We Care buttons and posters were made, worn and displayed during the week demonstrating the entire staff’s commitment to the mission.

Friday, Dec. 5, 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.