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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 June 7

To Medical Center Employees

Eighteen medical center town hall meetings, including some for large departments, were conducted during the second half of May and attended by 1,204 employees. The agenda included: a progress report on our fiscal year 2011 goals; an update on our "5 & 5 plans" to improve quality of care while reducing costs; and an explanation of value-based purchasing including the medical center's current "report card" and other topics.

I want to thank everyone who attended and we hope to improve attendance at future town hall meetings. For those unable to attend, the town hall presentation is posted on the medical center's intranet at

The 30-minute town hall sessions were again well received and described by participants as "concise and informative" and "clearly honest." The town hall evaluations will be used to focus on opportunities for continued improvement.

On another matter, at the June 7 management communications meeting it was announced that Stephen Colbert will visit Charleston on July 1 for an 8 p.m. appearance at the Gaillard Municipal Auditorium. His father, Dr. James W. Colbert, served as MUSC vice president for academic affairs from 1969 until his death in a plane crash in 1974. Funds raised at the July 1 event will support the James W. Colbert Endowed Chair. Tickets may be purchased at or contact Meghan Eichelberger of the MUSC Development Office at 792-4223 or for additional information. The management team is asked to share this information with everyone in their departments.

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

People–Fostering employee pride and loyalty

2011 Hurricane update
Al Nesmith, director of safety and security, and Rob Fowler, WCBD-TV Storm Team 2 meteorologist, shared details of the 2011 Atlantic Hurricane Season. Using data from weather experts William Gray and Phil Klotzbach at Colorado State University, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and other reports, Fowler shared the season's prediction of 16 tropical storms, nine hurricanes and five major hurricanes. Of the probability of major hurricanes making landfall, about 72 percent will affect the U.S. coast (48 percent in the east coast and 47 percent Gulf coast areas). He also compared NOAA's May 2011 forecast predicting 12 to 18 tropical storms, six to 10 hurricanes and three to six major hurricanes.

The 2011 hurricane names are Arlene, Bret, Cindy, Don, Emily, Franklin, Gert, Harvey, Irene, Jose, Katia, Lee, Maria, Nate, Ophelia, Phillipe, Rina, Sean, Tammy, Vince and Whitney.

Fowler urged employees to be vigilant and prepared in anticipation of this year's predicted activity. A hurricane watch issued when hurricane conditions are a possibility for an area within 48 hours. Hurricane warnings are issued when a storm is expected within 36 hours.

Nesmith announced the distribution of employee general/emergency information line cards (aka green card). The information also is posted on the medical center intranet.

HR update
Helena Bastian, MUHA Human Resources director, presented the following topics:

Separating Employees Communications Slip—Tool for departments and separating employees
• Provides employees with a checklist
• Provides department with accurate information to complete separation notice
• Notified employees to complete exit process which includes discussion about their retirement money, COBRA and completing MUHA exit interview form

Recent form modifications
• Section—Employee's forwarding address
• Link added from separation notice on HR website linking to communication slip

SuccessFactors Annual Review Training
• Open to supervisors and administrative staff beginning June 9 and throughout summer
• Participants will practice using test employees
• Register via CATTS. Search for keyword, "success," to find classes (SuccessFactors: Annual Performance Review Training for Supervisors & Admin Staff). For information, contact Michelle Forman, 792-6219.

Employee Evaluation Deadline
• Self-evaluation deadline was May 31
• If more time is needed to conduct Employee Self Review, supervisors can use "send back" button and forward back to employee
• Employees can open the form from the Supervisor Review step (Home Page/Performance tab). When completed, employee can use same button to send it back

Benefit of the Month—June
South Carolina Retirement System Pension Plan provides three lifetime income options at retirement. Employees contribute 6.5 percent and MUHA contributes 13.29 percent. Employees contributing 28 years of service can meet a pension as much as 50 percent of employees' final year of income or opt for early retirement (age 55 with 25 years of service credit. For information visit or to schedule a presentation, contact Mark Stimpson,

McKesson & GetWell Network
Natalie Carr, onsite account representative, reviewed details of a new initiative The GetWell Network is now interfaced with the McKesson system. Previously, staff could initiate education using GetWell for patients by videos in the patient room or ordering videos via a GetWell login on ClinLan desktops. Now clinical staff can order education in CPOE (Computerized Provider Order Entry) and documentation flows back into the electronic medical record. Users can select order type "nurse to nurse;" search "GWN" and select appropriate outline; select desired category and video title. Results are displayed in vOacis. Instructional documentation will be shared with nurse managers, service line directors and ancillary staff.

The next GetWell training is June 16, Room 1119, Ashley River Tower, register via CATTS. Contact Carr,

Patient and Family-Centered Care
Maggie Thompson, Patient Family Centered Care (PFCC) manager, Lisa Montgomery and Torri Jacobsen reviewed information and new initiatives from their group. Montgomery shared details about the hospital's complaint volume, which averages 100 complaints per month. Volume, details regarding resolution of issues, and monthly average are tracked using the 3M system.

In 2008, the medical center averaged 57 monthly complaints; 2009—107 complaints; 2010 (9 months)—89 complaints; and 2011 (April 30)—98 complaints. The Patient and Family Centered Care group strives to coordinate resolution of complaints within seven days. Currently 79 percent are resolved within that time frame. Within the year, the group observed an increase in complaints that are financially-related (unfunded, self-pay; high-deductible policies, high deductibles and patients who don't understand their financial obligations). They also observed increased anxiety levels among patients and families. PFCC staff continues to work with patients and families to reduce their anxiety and resolve their complaints quickly.

Thompson also explained the value of new hospital partnership councils to support efforts to provide patient and family-centered care. Goal is to match council members with staff and physician work groups to foster a partnership-based approach for all improvement efforts. IOP launched their new Patient and Family Partnership Council this spring. A new MUSC Patient and Family Partnership Council will kick-off in July to serve the adult hospitals. Children's Hospital has a Family Advisory Council. Recommendations for candidates for newly formed councils should be patients or families who have had a significant patient experience at MUSC. Staff and physicians will partner closely with council members, but will not serve on the council. For information, contact Thompson at

MUHA employees are invited to "An Evening with Stephen Colbert Benefitting MUSC," July 1, Gaillard Municipal Auditorium. Tickets start at $36.50 and can be purchased via TicketMaster. Proceeds will support The Colbert Chair and activities of the Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs.

The next meeting is June 21.



Friday, June 10, 2011

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.