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MUSC Medical Links Charleston Links Archives Catalyst Advertisers Seminars and Events Research Studies Public Relations Research Grants MUSC home page Community Happenings Campus News Applause


Currents Nov. 16

To Medical Center Employees:
At the Nov. 16 management communications meeting, Maggie Bobo, American Heart Association (AHA) director, Quality Improvement, and Lori Hollowell, AHA senior director, Mission Lifeline, gave an update on the AHA’s Get With The Guidelines program. This program focuses on consistent delivery of care to reduce length of stay, reduce mortality and decrease readmission rates. MUSC was recognized in U. S. News & World Report as one of only 33 hospitals out of 1,800 hospitals nationwide in 2010 as a Get With The Guidelines Triple Gold Award winner for coronary artery disease, heart failure and stroke. Additional details are included in this newsletter. Congratulations to everyone involved in achieving this outstanding distinction.

Recently, as discussed at the communications meeting, our Employer of Choice Team decided to begin recognition of tenured employees who have served the Medical Center in an exemplary fashion. Audrey Wilder, Pre-op Clinic Charge Nurse, Ambulatory Care, and Joyce Rivers-Miller, Lead Medical Social Worker, are two outstanding individuals with 28 and 20 years of service respectively. Ms. Wilder and Ms. Rivers-Miller have provided exceptional care to patients and families and have gone the extra mile by serving on numerous committees and task forces. Our hats are off to them for their commitment to the medical center and those we serve. 

Very recently we wrapped up a series of town hall meetings. Joan Herbert, director, Organizational Performance, reported that 1,114 employees or approximately 19 perent of the work force attended the meetings. Our town hall meetings are one of the methods we use to communicate with everyone and my hope is we will continue to improve attendance for future meetings. I want to thank everyone who attended. A recording of the town hall meeting will soon be posted on the medical center intranet.

W. Stuart Smith
Vice President for Clinical Operations
and Executive Director, MUSC Medical Center

People—Fostering employee pride and loyalty

Maryhelen Britt, an EEG technician in Clinical Neurophysiology, assisted a patient who was experiencing anxiety during an inpatient video electronencephalography (VEEG). The patient had planned to attend the Moja Arts Festival to purchase skin and hair care products at the festival, but was unable to do so because of the continuous monitoring. Using her own initiative, Britt purchased the products for the patient with her own money. (by Josh Haumschild)

AHA awards
Maggie Bobo, Mid-Atlantic affiliate of the American Heart Association (AHA) director, and Lori Hollowell, AHA senior director, Mission Lifeline, reviewed details with this year’s progress with the AHA’s Get With The Guidelines (GWTG) programs and Mission: Lifeline. In 2008, S.C. adopted Mission: Lifeline as a system for measuring patient care preferences and guides hospitals towards certification. MUSC is the only hospital at the recognition (second) level in this effort and was recognized with the 2010 Mission: Lifeline Bronze Award for Quality Care of Cardiac Patients. MUSC was listed in the 2010 August U.S. News and World Report rankings as one of 33 recognized hospitals to receive the AHA’s Triple Gold Recognition Award (GWTG Gold Award for coronary artery, Gold Plus Award for Heart Failure and Gold Plus Award for Stroke).

HR update
Helena Bastian, MUHA HR director, presented the following:

  • CATTS lessons – All mandatory CATTS lessons are due Dec. 1
  • HR Policy #5 (Competency Assessment and Maintenance, Section C #2) – “The Authority determines the annual organizational competencies. Employees are expected to complete assigned organizational competencies on time.”
  • Success Factors – Job Competencies Section – This section is not included in the overall score. However, if the employee receives a rating of “does not meet requirements,” he/she will not be eligible for a performance increase for the year. Maintain timely completion of job competencies including, but not limited to, organizational mandatory competencies and job/population-specific competencies.
  • Department reports are available in CATTS. Call 792-2805.
  • PTO Cash in/Conversion – PTO Cash in/Conversion available Dec. 8; Eligible employees may cash in/convert up to 40 hours of PTO provided a balance of 120 hours of PTO remains; PTO Cash in incentive is subject to appropriate taxes and deductions for lump sum pay (25 percent federal tax, 7.65 percent FICA and 7 percent state tax); PTO cash in or conversion will be based on accrued PTO balance as of Nov. 20; Eligible employees must submit online request form (via My Record) to payroll by Dec. 1; instruction are available via medical center intranet.
  • Employer of Choice: Tenured employee recognition -- Employer of Choice Team is implementing this program to recognize employees.
  • Employer of Choice Tenured Employees Recognition Program recognizes Audrey L. Wilder, R.N., Ambulatory Surgery Department (28 years service) and Joyce Rivers-Miller, lead medical social worker (20 years service).
  • MUSC Spirit Night @ the S.C. Stingrays. All you can eat seats ($20), Dec. 4 and Dec. 17, advance purchase only, call 744-2248, ext. 1214.

Healthy Charleston Challenge
Susan Johnson, Ph.D., Health 1st,  and Janis Newton, MUSC Wellness Center, shared details about the Spring 2011 Healthy Charleston Challenge (Biggest Loser) held at MUSC. This program has been ongoing since 2008. The spring session will be Jan. 13 to March 24. A Health 1st team also is being formed. Visit or e-mail

Town hall update
Joan Herbert, director of Organizational Performance, updated managers about results from the town hall meetings. Initial feedback showed an increase in meeting attendance (goal, 23 percent; actual, 19 percent).

Quality–Providing quality patient care in a safe environment.
Jennifer Hooks was introduced as the new MUSC Performance Improvement Department manager. Hooks, who is experienced in process improvement, comes to MUSC after serving 25 years in the USAF.  Within the past year, the medical center has been working to elevate its performance improvement efforts. Hooks challenged managers with two questions relating to performance and patient care and encouraged them to seek the new Performance Improvement Team’s assistance within their departments. Call 792-4906.

Service–Service the public with compassion, respect and excellence.
Maggie Thompson, Patient Family Centered Care, reminded managers about the change to Avatar. Since Sept. 30, information uploads to Press Ganey had ceased (with exception to Pediatric Inpatient and Pediatric ED areas). Avatar will be available by late November and early December; Press Ganey users will receive Avatar login information; a training Webinar is planned sometime in December; onsite Avatar training is scheduled for late January and early February; and standard monthly training for staff will begin in March. Visit the Avatar Web page on the MUHA intranet.

Friday, Nov. 19, 2010

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.