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Parkland receives Supplier Diversity Leadership Award
Award presented at UHC Annual Conference 2013







“Supplier diversity is an important element in the success of any organization. We are proud of Parkland’s commitment to diversity and the economic growth of their community,” said Jake Groenewold, Senior Vice President, Supply Chain, UHC.

The Supplier Diversity Leadership Award is based on several criteria:
• Structure and strength of the organization's supplier diversity program
• New programs or techniques that facilitated the growth of diverse businesses in 2012
• Utilization of diversity contracts
• Community involvement and outreach to minority, women, and veteran-owned businesses
• Senior leaders’ involvement in supplier diversity development

“Supplier diversity is a priority at Parkland Health & Hospital System,” said Indria Hollingsworth, Parkland’s Director of Supplier Diversity and Ethical Sourcing. “Parkland’s Board of Managers made inclusion of diverse suppliers a strategic priority for the organization. The Board’s vision, coupled with the guidance of the executive leadership team, created a climate of meaningful inclusion. Collaboration between qualified diverse suppliers and Parkland’s supply chain has been the linchpin for success. Inclusion makes good business sense and positively impacts Parkland’s bottom line as we strive daily to provide quality healthcare to those who depend on us.”

The UHC Supply Chain Performance Excellence Collaborative began in 2007 to help UHC Supply Chain participants better understand and define supply chain performance and to provide them with actionable information for making measurable, sustainable improvements.
Parkland Health & Hospital System received the 2013 UHC Supplier Diversity Leadership Award for the development and implementation of an outstanding supplier diversity program, presented at the organization’s Annual Conference 2013 awards ceremony last night in Atlanta, GA. UHC, University HealthSystem Consortium, is an alliance of the nation's leading nonprofit academic medical centers, which are focused on delivering world-class patient care.
Former NICU patient overcomes the odds of premature birth
Texas Health Dallas NICU reunion brings families together to celebrate, reminisce






His was one of the many stories and memories shared at the recent NICU reunion at Texas Health Dallas. This annual event lets families visit with their caretakers who were such a big part of their lives from the beginning.

“The NICU team held us up at every turn,” said Sara Murphy, Graham’s mom. “The social workers, doctors on staff, respiratory therapists and nurses were beyond helpful to us. They stood quietly by our sides while we wept. They encouraged, empathized and yes, they even cried too.”

The Murphy’s journey began during week 20 of Sara’s pregnancy.

“I never hesitate to describe my pregnancy with Graham as a miracle,” Sara said. “We had a long road with fertility specialists and no success, but then we conceived naturally and my pregnancy progressed without any major problems until my 20th week.”

That’s when her blood pressure soared dangerously high, and she gained 11 pounds of fluid in three days. By week 23, Sara was on bed rest and by week 25 she was hospitalized. At that point, Sara and her husband, Patrick, were briefed by doctors on the medical staff at Texas Health Dallas’ Margot Perot Center for Women and Infants about what to expect with a premature birth.

“When the pain began I knew what was coming next, but I told my nurses it was too early to deliver,” Sara said. “They told me that I was dying and this was my only option.”

An emergency C-section was performed and Graham came out crying.

“I couldn’t believe how small he was. His arm was the size of my pinky,” said Patrick Murphy, Graham’s dad.
For the next four months, he was cared for by a team of physicians on the medical staff-- neonatologists, pediatric radiologists, and surgeons, as well as nurses, respiratory therapists and other specialists.

“The team used their expertise to care for our son in ways that we could not,” Sara said. “They held team meetings with us to discuss progress and the future. There was rarely much good news, yet they delivered it with hope.”

But as Graham grew stronger, Sara and Patrick gained strength from the experienced and compassionate NICU team. They celebrated together after each successful surgery as well as his ventilator removal after two and a half months.

“The NICU Care team realizes the pivotal role that the parents have in the success of their infants’ progress,” said Christine Brooks, manager of the NICU at Texas Health Dallas. “The celebration of developmental milestones together with the family underscores the neonatal nurses’ expertise at developing  both a professional and therapeutic relationship with the families; the cornerstone of  our professional practice model for nursing at Texas Health Resources.”

In addition to his recent black belt in taekwondo, Graham is an avid baseball player and loves to play outdoors.
“He still sees doctors on a regular basis,” Sara said. “And though he’s small for his age I think the miracle that got him here is bigger than any of us. He is a true testament of God’s faithfulness.”

About Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas: Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas is an 898-bed acute care hospital and recognized clinical program leader, having provided compassionate care to the residents of Dallas and surrounding communities since 1966. US News and World Report has ranked Texas Health Dallas among the nation’s best hospitals in digestive disorders, orthopedics, and neurology and neurosurgery. An affiliate of the faith-based, nonprofit Texas Health Resources system, Texas Health Dallas has approximately 4,000 employees and an active medical staff of more than 1,000 physicians. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit www.TexasHealth.org.
Born weighing only 1 pound, 10 ounces, Graham Murphy spent his first 120 days fighting for his life in the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Ten years later and he’s still practicing that fighting spirit-only this time it’s for his black belt in taekwondo.
UT Southwestern joins national study to determine if vitamin D prevents diabetes










“There is some evidence that treatment with vitamin D can prevent development of type 2 diabetes,” said Dr. Philip Raskin, Professor of Internal Medicine, who will lead the UT Southwestern investigation. “If you could prevent development of diabetes, that would save people a lot of anguish and diabetes medication cost.”

People interested in taking part in the trial at UT Southwestern can call 214-DIABETES (214-342-2383) to see if they qualify for this or other diabetes-related trials. A free blood test will determine if someone qualifies.

The American Diabetes Association estimates 79 million Americans have prediabetes – more than three times the number of people with full-blown diabetes. Nearly 26 million people, about 8.3 percent of the U.S. population, have diabetes.

The Vitamin D and Type 2 Diabetes (D2d) study is the first to examine if a daily dose of 4,000 International Units (IUs) of vitamin D in the form of D3 (cholecalciferol) prevents development of type 2 diabetes. Although the recommended daily dose of vitamin D for a healthy adult is 600 to 800 IUs, the higher dosage to be used in this trial is within limits considered safe.

“The side effects of vitamin D3 in the doses we’re going to use are few. It’s a fairly safe and inexpensive treatment,” Dr. Raskin said. Taking vitamin D supplements carries a very small risk of developing kidney stones or high levels of calcium in the blood or urine, according to the study researchers.

Based on observations from other studies, researchers suspect that vitamin D may reduce diabetes risk by 25 percent. The study also will examine whether sex, age, or race factor into the effects of vitamin D in reducing diabetes risk. The D2d study will be double-blinded, so neither participants nor the study’s clinical staff will know who is receiving vitamin D or a placebo. All study participants will receive twice-yearly check-ups.     

D2d is the latest in a series of large-scale, multicenter diabetes clinical trials that UT Southwestern has taken part in to help improve diabetes care and identify the best treatments. UT Southwestern also is participating in the Glycemia Reduction Approaches in Diabetes: A Comparative Effectiveness (GRADE) study, which will compare the benefits and side effects of four different type 2 diabetes therapies, along with earlier NIH-funded trials that included the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial, Epidemiology of Diabetes Interventions and Complications study, and Type 1 Diabetes TrialNet.

Clinical trials are important to develop new treatments to prevent, diagnose, or treat a disease. Find clinical trials at UT Southwestern or learn more about participating in clinical trials at UT Southwestern.

Dr. Raskin is a member of UT Southwestern’s division of endocrinology, which was recognized by U.S. News & World Report in its 2012-2013 “Best Hospitals” annual issue. He also has an appointment in the Touchstone Center for Diabetes Research, which focuses on basic science and clinical aspects of diabetes. Others on the clinical trial’s local research team include Dr. Chanhaeng Rhee, Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine, and Dr. Naim Maalouf, Associate Professor of Internal Medicine.

D2d (ClinicalTrials.gov number NCT01942694) is supported under NIH grant U01DK098245. The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) is the primary sponsor of the trial, with additional support from the NIH Office of Dietary Supplements and the American Diabetes Association. Support in the form of educational materials is provided by the National Diabetes Education Program.

About UT Southwestern Medical Center: UT Southwestern, one of the premier academic medical centers in the nation, integrates pioneering biomedical research with exceptional clinical care and education. The institution’s faculty includes many distinguished members, including five who have been awarded Nobel Prizes since 1985. Numbering more than 2,700, the faculty is responsible for groundbreaking medical advances and is committed to translating science-driven research quickly to new clinical treatments. UT Southwestern physicians provide medical care in 40 specialties to nearly 90,000 hospitalized patients and oversee more than 1.9 million outpatient visits a year.
UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers are seeking 150 to 200 adults to take part in the local arm of a major national clinical trial that will investigate whether vitamin D helps prevent or delay development of type 2 diabetes.

           Over a period of up to four years, diabetes specialists at UT Southwestern and at 19 other sites nationwide will track 2,500 trial participants age 30 or older who have prediabetes for the Vitamin D and Type 2 Diabetes study. People with prediabetes have blood glucose levels that are higher than normal, but not high enough to be considered diabetic.
Reach Out and Read program at Parkland receives David M. Rubenstein Prize for advancing literacy







Through the Reach Out and Read program, a new, age-appropriate book is provided for each child age 6 months to 5 years after each visit to one of Parkland’s COPCs. Books are offered in English, Spanish and bilingual, and in the past six months alone, 1,123 books were distributed to children at Parkland’s DeHaro/Saldivar Heath Center. As part of the program, doctors and nurses offer guidance to parents about the importance of reading aloud with their children every day.

“We encourage parents to read to their kids in order to prepare them for school and to help elevate their literacy levels,” said Rosie Hernandez, Parkland’s Reach Out and Read coordinator.

According to the program, Reach Out and Read is a proven intervention, supported by 15 independent published research studies. During the preschool years, children served by Reach Out and Read score three to six months ahead of their non-Reach Out and Read peers on vocabulary tests.

“I’m proud to say that Parkland participates in this program and it is satisfying to know that the books not only make the kids happy, but also help them lay a strong foundation for their future,” said Hernandez.
Reach Out and Read, a national literacy program Parkland Health & Hospital System has implemented in its Community Oriented Primary Care Clinics (COPCs) since it was founded in 1999, has received the prestigious David M. Rubenstein Prize, the top honor among the 2013 Library of Congress Literacy Awards, for its significant work in advancing literacy. Reach Out and Read was chosen for the prize from a pool of more than 185 applicants, both literacy-related organizations and individuals.
Parkland's North Texas Poison Center urges participation in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day
Proper disposal of unused medications prevents accidental poisonings






The event takes place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 26, and aims to provide a safe and convenient means for people to dispose of their unused or expired medications.

“Communities across the United States will be taking part in this event and raising awareness on the potential for abuse of prescription medications,” said Charise Thomason, public health educator with the North Texas Poison Center.

Residents are encouraged to go to the following site and put in their Zip code to find a list of every nearby city participating in the event: http://tinyurl.com/njwwzau

Thomason said there are several reasons why people should dispose of unused, expired and unwanted medications:

• Unwanted medications can be tempting to children and pets, and can result in unintentional poisonings.
• Expired medications are often ineffective because they have been kept past their expiration date or improperly stored.
• Unused medications can make your home a target of theft by drug abusers.
• Dispose of medications properly. Do not keep prescription medications around “just in case.”
• Inventory your medicine cabinet and other places you store your medicines.
• Safely store the medicines you use by keeping them out of reach. Store medicines in a locked cabinet or medicine lock box.
• Always use the child-resistant medicine cap – and remember child-resistant caps are not childproof.

For more information about the proper way to dispose of prescription and over-the-counter medication, contact the poison experts at the North Texas Poison Center, 1.800.222.1222.
Medicines in the home are a leading cause of accidental poisoning and flushed or trashed medicines can end up polluting our waters. To reduce the number of unintentional poisonings, the staff of the North Texas Poison Center, housed at Parkland Memorial Hospital, is urging residents to take part in the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day.
Eleven Texas Health Resources Hospitals Earn Top Safety Grades from The Leapfrog Group





as leadership commitment to creating a safe environment for patients, to come up with the letter grades.

Nationally, only about a third of the 2,539 hospitals scored were ranked "A."

"As Texas Health carries out our mission of improving the health of the people in the communities we serve, we place a high emphasis on the quality and safety of the care we deliver," said Dr. Daniel Varga, chief clinical officer and senior executive vice president for Texas Health. "This means being transparent and accountable for our quality and safety. We welcome public report cards such as the Leapfrog rankings."

Texas Health hospitals that received "A" grades were:

  *   Texas Health Arlington Memorial Hospital<http://www.texashealth.org/arlington>
  *   Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Azle<http://www.texashealth.org/azle>
  *   Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne<http://www.texashealth.org/cleburne>
  *   Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Hurst-Euless-Bedford<http://www.texashealth.org/heb>
  *   Texas Health Huguley Hospital Fort Worth South<http://www.texashealth.org/Huguley>
  *   Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Allen<http://www.texashealth.org/allen>
  *   Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas<http://www.texashealth.org/dallas>
  *   Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Denton<http://www.texashealth.org/denton>
  *   Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Kaufman<http://www.texashealth.org/kaufman>
  *   Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano<http://www.texashealth.org/plano>
  *   Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Rockwall<http://www.texashealth.org/Rockwall>

Calculated under the guidance of The Leapfrog Group's Blue Ribbon Expert Panel, the Hospital Safety Score uses 28 measures of publicly available hospital safety data to produce a single score representing a hospital's overall capacity to keep patients safe from infections, injuries, and medical and medication errors.
Individual hospital scores can be viewed at the Hospital Safety Score website at www.hospitalsafetyscore.org<http://www.hospitalsafetyscore.org>.

About Texas Health Resources: Texas Health Resources is one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health systems in the United States. The health system includes 25 acute care and short-stay hospitals that are owned, operated, joint-ventured or affiliated with Texas Health Resources. It includes the Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Arlington Memorial and Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Huguley Hospitals, Texas Health Physicians Group, outpatient facilities, behavioral health and home health, preventive and fitness services, and an organization for medical research and education.

For more information about Texas Health Resources, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit www.TexasHealth.org<http://www.TexasHealth.org>.
Eleven Texas Health Resources hospitals made "A" grades for patient safety, according to the latest Hospital Safety Scores from The Leapfrog Group. The organization, a national watchdog on the quality and safety of hospital care, used publicly available quality and safety measures, as well
Texas Health Physicians Group names new president, affirms commitment to physician leadership, engagement 
Family medicine specialist Dr. Shawn Parsley becomes president effective Oct. 22
 










Texas Health Physicians Group is part of the Texas Health system and includes more than 840 physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and medical professionals. With 234 locations in Collin, Dallas, Denton, Johnson, Parker and Tarrant counties that serve as critical links in the continuum of care, Texas Health Physicians Group furthers Texas Health’s strategy of transforming itself from a hospital-centric organization to a patient-centered, fully integrated health system.

Parsley is board-certified in family practice and has been a member of Texas Health Physicians Group since January 2011. Parsley will continue to practice medicine part-time at Lake Worth Family Medicine in Fort Worth, where he has served patients for 13 years. 

“I’ve always enjoyed figuring out how all the pieces of any particular endeavor fit together,” said Parsley, a native of Conroe, Texas. “Since joining Texas Health Physicians Group, I’ve had the opportunity to learn more about the Texas Health Resources system, and I’m thrilled to represent and serve physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants of the organization.” 

Before joining Texas Health Physicians Group, Parsley served in leadership positions with Medical Edge Healthcare Group. Previously, he served in the Army and was quickly elevated to chief of clinics for the largest outlying health clinic in the European Regional Medical Command. He has served on a number of boards and committees both within Texas Health and in private business. He graduated from the University of North Texas Health Science Center in Fort Worth and completed residency and internships at the Osteopathic Medical Center, also in Fort Worth. 

In his new role, Parsley will work closely with Varga and Texas Health’s zone leadership to develop and implement the system’s physician-directed population health strategy. Parsley, a resident of Fort Worth, will also oversee Texas Health Physicians Group clinical operations, physician engagement, recognition and human resources-related issues. Parsley, 46, replaces Michael Stoltz, M.D., who retired Aug. 1.

About Texas Health Physicians Group: Texas Health Physicians Group is Texas Health Resources’ 501(a) not-for-profit physician organization based in Arlington. The group includes more than 840 physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and medical professionals dedicated to providing safe, quality care for our patients. In addition to our primary and specialty practices, the organization’s network includes sleep lab services, infusion services, and diagnostic imaging in more than 230 locations in Collin, Dallas, Denton, Johnson, Parker and Tarrant counties.

About Texas Health Resources: Texas Health Resources is one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health systems in the United States. The health system includes 25 acute care and short-stay hospitals that are owned, operated, joint-ventured or affiliated with Texas Health Resources. It includes the Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Arlington Memorial, Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Huguley Hospitals, Texas Health Physicians Group, outpatient facilities, behavioral health and home health, preventive and fitness services, and an organization for medical research and education.

For more information about Texas Health Resources, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit TexasHealth.org.
Texas Health Physicians Group has named Shawn D. Parsley, D.O., to the position of president, effective Oct. 22. Dr. Parsley will report to Daniel Varga, M.D., chief clinical officer and senior executive vice president of Texas Health Resources. Parsley’s appointment fulfills Texas Health’s goal to bring more physicians into leadership roles across the system. Physicians now serve in clinical leader positions at all levels of the health system, including each of three geographical zones across the North Texas service area.

“Dr. Parsley is no stranger to physician practice leadership,” Dr. Varga said. “He is engaged and global in thought regarding the significant and growing role of Texas Health Physicians Group in advancing Texas Health Resources’ mission, vision and strategic plan.” 
Texas Health Resources Wins HIMSS Davies Award of Excellence







The award recognizes excellence in the use of health information technology, specifically the use of the electronic health record (EHR), to successfully improve health care delivery processes and patient safety with a demonstrated return on investment.

"This prestigious recognition spotlights the collaborative work of our talented information technology team and compassionate caregivers," said Barclay Berdan, FACHE, Texas Health senior executive vice president and chief operating officer. "North Texas patients are benefitting from the innovative application of technology to enhance the care they receive across our system."

To win this award, organizations must demonstrate the value of the EHR in supporting delivery of patient care along with documenting improved patient outcomes, identifying challenges and describing solutions that could be implemented by other organizations.

Winners must also have achieved Stage 6 or Stage 7 on the HIMSS Analytics EMR Adoption Model (EMRAM)(tm).  All of Texas Health's 14 wholly owned hospitals have been awarded HIMSS Analytics EMR Adoption Model Stage 6 or above designation, a level achieved by only 13 percent of hospitals nationwide.
"Texas Health takes an innovative approach to everything we do, whether improving the quality of care or implementing advanced technology. The electronic health record and other innovations help us provide high-quality, coordinated care across our system," said Dr. Ferdinand Velasco, Texas Health chief health information officer.

To be considered for the Davies award, Texas Health submitted five case studies that demonstrated how the system has fully integrated health information technologies to improve patient care and safety, and to advance research and cost control.

Following are summaries of the case studies, posted on the HIMSS website<http://apps.himss.org/davies/pastRecipients_org.asp>:

  *   Venous thromboembolism (VTE): In 2008, Texas Health launched a program to help reduce VTE, or blood clots. The system was nationally recognized for using "Best Practice" alerts in the EHR to help reduce the risk of getting blood clots during hospital stays. By 2011, post-operative VTE rates were less than half of pre-program rates. Lowering post-op VTE rates has helped Texas Health to satisfy Surgical Care Improvement Project requirements, and to meet measures set forth by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The initiative has resulted in a cost avoidance of more than $6 million. The savings represents about a 50% decrease in the number of VTEs over four years.

  *   Clinical business intelligence: As a large, integrated health care system, Texas Health continues to grow and diversify through acquisitions. By 2011, all of the system's wholly owned entities were on the same EHR platform. However, the acquisition of a large physician network introduced a variety of EHR installations. To obtain a 360-degree view of a patient's care, data from disparate systems had to be integrated, including data from physician practices, hospitals, and post-acute providers. Through the system's investment in a clinical business intelligence solution, Texas Health expects an annual return of $5 to $8 million from enhanced decisions and improved data quality from advanced analytics.

*         Clinical value: Texas Health has experienced significant value in our wholly owned hospitals' common EHR in the areas of cost savings, cost avoidance and improved outcomes. Highlights include a 53 percent reduction in medication errors through a closed-loop medication administration process; 36 percent decrease in adverse drug events through increasing use of computerized physician order entry by physicians, resulting in $1.8 million in cost avoidance; a 34 percent reduction in overall fall rates, with a cost avoidance of more than $1 million; an increase from 88 percent to 99 percent in nursing compliance in use of screening tools; and a decrease from 1.8 to 1.2 days for in-dwelling catheter in patients.

*         Modified Early Warning System: Texas Health continuously explores ways to better and more proactively manage patients before they experience significant clinical events that negatively impact their recovery. The EHR has enhanced the clinician's ability to aggregate patient information to make care decisions sooner, and with the best possible data. The Modified Early Warning System brings relevant information to the registered nurse with which to make immediate care decisions in critical situations. The success of this project has been beyond expectations: Cardiac arrest decreased by 38 percent in the first six months of use and cardiac arrest has since decreased to 65 percent. This represents cost avoidance $640,000 per year from increased MEWS surveillance.

*         Return on investment: Texas Health implemented a fully integrated EHR in
13 wholly owned hospitals between 2006 and 2011, and opened a 14th wholly owned hospital with a fully integrated EHR in 2012. With a capital investment of $65 million and operating expenses of nearly $162.6 million over the first 5 years, Texas Health has seen a measurable ROI including $5 million in staff reductions and efficiencies; $1.9 million in reduced forms cost; $63.8 million in Meaningful Use Stage 1 incentives; $23 million in Clinical Value and Cost Avoidance; and $17 million from decreased adverse drug events and incidence of VTE.

"These significant results are so much more than just numbers and facts. They represent lives saved and care enhanced as dedicated IT professionals and caregivers work together to help transform the delivery of health care in North Texas," said Edward Marx, Texas Health chief information officer.
Texas Health will be recognized at the 2013 Annual HIMSS Conference & Exhibition in Orlando, Fla., on Feb. 23-27, 2014.

About Texas Health Resources: Texas Health Resources is one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health systems in the United States. The health system includes 25 acute care and short-stay hospitals that are owned, operated, joint-ventured or affiliated with Texas Health Resources. It includes the Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Arlington Memorial and Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Huguley Hospitals, Texas Health Physicians Group, outpatient facilities, behavioral health and home health, preventive and fitness services, and an organization for medical research and education.

For more information about Texas Health Resources, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit www.TexasHealth.org<http://www.TexasHealth.org>.
Texas Health Resources has been named as a recipient of the 2013 Enterprise HIMSS Davies Award of Excellence by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS<http://www.himss.org/>), the nation's major health information technology association.
Methodist Mansfield Medical Center Awarded an “A” in Patient Safety by Hospital Safety Score





Hospital Safety Score was compiled under the guidance of the nation’s leading experts on patient safety. The first and only hospital safety rating to be peer-reviewed in the Journal of Patient Safety (April 2013), the score is designed to give the public information they can use to protect themselves and their families.

“We are again honored to be among the best rated hospitals in the nation and to be recognized for providing better outcomes and greater safety for our patients,” says President of Methodist Mansfield Medical Center John Phillips, FACHE. “We are proud of our team who are committed to providing the highest quality of care and best patient experience to our patients.” 

“As patients begin to take a more active role in selecting where to receive health care, it has never been more important to focus on hospital safety and transparency. The ‘A’ hospitals, including Methodist Mansfield are helping us to raise the standards of health care nationwide,” says Leah Binder, president and CEO of Leapfrog. “We offer our congratulations and hope the hospital will continue to strive for an ever-increasing level of excellence in patient safety.”

To see Methodist Mansfield’s scores as they compare nationally and locally, and to find safety tips for patients and their loved ones, visit the Hospital Safety Score website atwww.hospitalsafetyscore.org. Local hospitals’ scores are also available on the free mobile app, available at www.hospitalsafetyscore.org. 

Calculated under the guidance of Leapfrog’s Blue Ribbon Expert Panel, the Hospital Safety Score uses 28 measures of publicly available hospital safety data to produce a single “A,” “B,” “C,” “D,” or “F” score representing a hospital’s overall capacity to keep patients safe from preventable harm. More than 2,500 general U.S. hospitals were assigned scores this fall. A full analysis of the data and methodology used is available on the Hospital Safety Score website.

About The Leapfrog Group: The Leapfrog Group (www.leapfroggroup.org) is a national nonprofit organization using the collective leverage of large purchasers of health care to initiate breakthrough improvements in the safety, quality and affordability of health care for Americans. The flagship Leapfrog Hospital Survey allows purchasers to structure their contracts and purchasing to reward the highest performing hospitals. The Leapfrog Group was founded in November 2000 with support from the Business Roundtable and national founders, and is now independently operated with support from its purchaser and other members.

About Methodist Health System: Guided by the founding principles of life, learning, and compassion, Methodist Health System (Methodist) provides quality, integrated care to improve and save the lives of individuals and families throughout North Texas. Methodist Dallas Medical Center, Methodist Charlton Medical Center, Methodist Mansfield Medical Center, Methodist Richardson Medical Center, Methodist Midlothian Health Center, and Methodist Family Health Centers are part of the nonprofit Methodist Health System, which is affiliated by covenant with the North Texas Conference of The United Methodist Church. Additional information is available at www.MethodistHealthSystem.org. Connect with them through Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter at www.MethodistHealthSystem.org/SocialMedia.
Methodist Mansfield Medical Center was honored with an “A” Hospital Safety Score in the fall of 2013 by The Leapfrog Group, an independent industry watchdog. A Hospital Safety score of an “A” is awarded on how well hospitals protect patients from accidents, errors, injuries and infections.  The
Parkland leader named CFO of the Year for health care
Local publication honors Walter 'Ted' Shaw for his work





Shaw was honored for his work at Parkland which includes responsibilities beyond finance. He serves as Parkland’s representative as anchor for Region 9 under the Texas Medicaid 1115 Waiver, which involves all large health care provider systems in Dallas, Denton and Kaufman counties. The program has the potential to bring more than $1 billion in health care funding to North Texas through innovation and transformation projects that involve all hospitals in the area.

In addition, Shaw oversees the construction of the largest health care project in the nation, the new Parkland Hospital. The $1.3 billion, 2.5 million square-foot project will replace the current facility that has been operating since 1954.

“It’s quite an honor to be recognized with this award,” Shaw said. “But it’s a team effort and I’m fortunate to be surrounded by a group of very talented individuals.”

In his work at Parkland, Shaw has emphasized team-building, targeting performance, quality and growth. Drawing on his extensive prior experience as a health care consultant and leader at four academic medical centers, Shaw has implemented a results-driven approach at Parkland, building stakeholder alliances internally and among county, state and community partners.

“This honor for Ted Shaw is a well-deserved acknowledgment of his enormous contributions not only to the financial health and operational stability of the Parkland system, but also to health care for communities throughout North Texas. We are extremely proud of his accomplishments during his tenure at Parkland and grateful for his sound and solid leadership during challenging times,” said Robert L. Smith, Parkland’s interim CEO.

Shaw is a graduate of The University of Texas, Austin where he received a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree in Accounting.
Walter “Ted” Shaw has been named Dallas Business Journal’s CFO of the Year for health care. Shaw, who has served as Parkland Health & Hospital System’s Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer since July 2012, received the honor Oct. 24.
Psoriasis can damage emotional well-being, skin, Parkland expert says
World Psoriasis Day raises awareness of common skin disease








More than 125 million people worldwide—2 to 3 percent of the total population—have psoriasis, according to the World Psoriasis Day consortium, a global group of patient associations that aims to educate both patients and the public about this devastating skin disease by raising awareness with the annual World Psoriasis Day event occurring on October 29 this year.

A chronic skin disease characterized by red bumps with large silver-white scales, psoriasis most often appears on the elbows, knees, lower back and scalp. Psoriasis is not contagious but is thought to be genetic, or inherited. About one in three people with psoriasis report having a relative with the condition.

Symptoms include itching and pain. Studies show that between 10 to 30 percent of people with psoriasis also develop psoriatic arthritis causing significant joint pain. Nearly 60 percent of patients with psoriasis report their disease is a significant problem in their everyday life, causing them to miss an average of 26 days of work per year. Nearly one-quarter of people with psoriasis have cases that are considered moderate to severe.

Although there is no cure for psoriasis, treatments can help control symptoms and prevent infection. Topical treatments include lotions, ointments, creams and shampoos. Systemic treatments for more severe cases include medications and injections that lower the entire body’s immune response, not just the skin’s, to decrease the inflammation. A third option is phototherapy, which uses focused ultraviolet light to treat psoriasis.

“While we don’t have a cure for psoriasis, there are a variety of treatments that can be prescribed to help treat patients,” Dr. Chong stated. “Besides treating their physical symptoms, we also look for signs of depression and refer patients to medical specialists for further evaluation. Individuals with moderate to severe psoriasis may also benefit from counseling or participation in a support group to reduce self-consciousness about their appearance or relieve psychological distress. The disabling consequences of psoriasis are real, and people need to be aware of what they are.”
Psoriasis, which affects as many as 7.5 million Americans, not only irritates the skin, but also can affect the self-confidence of those afflicted, according to Benjamin F. Chong, MD, Medical Chief of Dermatology at Parkland Health & Hospital System.

“Psoriasis can be very disabling,” Dr. Chong said. “In addition to experiencing significant physical discomfort and some disability, those affected can also suffer from a poor self-image because many lesions are in highly visible areas.”
Texas Health Dallas Earns Top Safety Grade from The Leapfrog Group





used publicly available quality and safety measures, as well as leadership commitment to creating a safe environment for patients, to come up with the letter grade.

Eleven Texas Health Resources hospitals received the top grade, including Texas Health Dallas.
“Despite a tumultuous and challenging health care environment, we saw an increase in our score from a B to an A,” said Britt Berrett, Ph.D., president of Texas Health Dallas. “I am proud of our team’s continued commitment to improving our quality and safety initiatives.”  

“As Texas Health carries out our mission of improving the health of the people in the communities we serve, we place a high emphasis on the quality and safety of the care we deliver,” said Dr. Daniel Varga, chief clinical officer and senior executive vice president for Texas Health. “This means being transparent and accountable for our quality and safety. We welcome public report cards such as the Leapfrog rankings."

Calculated under the guidance of The Leapfrog Group’s eight-member Blue Ribbon Expert Panel, the Hospital Safety Score uses 28 measures of publicly available hospital safety data to produce a single score representing a hospital’s overall capacity to keep patients safe from infections, injuries, and medical and medication errors.

Individual hospital scores can be viewed at the Hospital Safety Score website at www.hospitalsafetyscore.org.

About Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas: Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas is an 898-bed acute care hospital and recognized clinical program leader, having provided compassionate care to the residents of Dallas and surrounding communities since 1966. US News and World Report has ranked Texas Health Dallas among the nation’s best hospitals in digestive disorders, orthopedics, and neurology and neurosurgery. An affiliate of the faith-based, nonprofit Texas Health Resources system, Texas Health Dallas has approximately 4,000 employees and an active medical staff of more than 1,000 physicians. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit www.TexasHealth.org.
Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas earned an “A” grade for patient safety, according to the latest Hospital Safety Scores from The Leapfrog Group. The organization, a national watchdog on the quality and safety of hospital care,
Texas Health Dallas offers new approach to feeding newborns; program puts babies in driver’s seat
Doctors say infant-driven feeding program helps shorten average hospital stay by 4 days





her parents thanks to a new baby-driven feeding program at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas that puts control in the tiny hands of babies like her.

The program, called Infant-Driven Feeding Protocols, lets premature babies in the hospital’s Special Care Nursery signal when they’re ready to eat. Traditionally, neonatal and special care units have used scheduled and volume-based systems to feed newborns. Scheduled feedings even called for sleeping babies to be woken up to eat, causing the infant to burn precious calories and expend needed energy.

The goal of the new infant-driven program at Texas Health Dallas is to help tiny newborns get the hang of eating on their own quicker and achieve stable growth — necessary steps before they can go home.

“What’s nice is we don’t have to wait until Daphne cries to know she’s hungry,” said mom Misty Jackson-Miller, 30. “Once she reached 33 weeks, the nurses started guiding us to watch for signs that she wanted to eat — and not solely depend on the chart. She was then fed only for as long as she was showing interest in feeding.”
“I’m very attuned to her body language,” Misty added.

The new program was implemented after pediatricians and neonatologists on the medical staff at Texas Health Dallas completed a year-long assessment to compare the effectiveness of chart-based, scheduled feedings against infant-driven methods that use infant cues to guide feedings. Their findings show babies between 33 to 36 weeks gestational age learn to nourish themselves faster and gain stable growth sooner with the infant-driven program — helping babies go home generally four days sooner than those who used the traditional feeding methods.

“The schedule-based feeding system has worked well for years, but we’re always looking for ways to improve care,” said Dr. Terri L. Major-Kincade, medical director of the Special Care Nursery at Texas Health Dallas. “What’s most interesting and rewarding about what we’ve found with the new program is that babies are learning to nourish themselves, meeting their goals faster and getting to go home sooner. This program isn’t an expensive, new technology or procedure. It’s just a better way to provide care.”

Upon admission to the hospital’s 44-private bed Special Care Nursery, Misty was trained to look for signals that Daphne was hungry and ready to eat: stirring before or during care time, staying awake, exhibiting rooting (sucking reflex) or hand-to-mouth motions.

While eating comes naturally to many newborns, premature babies have a much more difficult time with nourishing themselves, whether it’s drinking from a bottle or breast feeding, the doctors on the medical staff at Texas Health Dallas say.

“Feeding can be a difficult task for premature or high-risk infants like Daphne, due to trouble maintaining body temperature, less overall strength and endurance, and the need to maintain safe coordination of sucking, swallowing and breathing,” Dr. Major-Kincade said. “Fortunately, careful monitoring and early intervention often lessens some of the dangers posed to this extremely fragile population. In some cases, babies can catch-up after birth, but these patients usually remain smaller than expected.”

Born April 15 at 2 pounds 4 ounces, Daphne suffered from low birth weight caused by intrauterine growth restriction, a condition that prevents normal infant growth during pregnancy. Unlike full-term babies born between 37-42 weeks, babies like Daphne often have underdeveloped muscles needed for swallowing, sucking and breathing — making the feeding process one of the biggest challenges in nurseries across the country. Those who spent time in the NICU on ventilators – before graduating to the Special Care Nursery — often have further weakened muscles needed for eating.

“Parents of preterm infants often feel overwhelmed because these small and premature babies can be more challenging to feed,” said Dr. Gerald Nystrom, medical director of the NICU at Texas Health Dallas and a neonatologist on the hospital’s medical staff. “Our infant-driven feeding program gives babies and families more opportunities to practice and succeed, which in turn supports the infant's developmental growth and long-term well-being.”

Upon reaching 33 weeks gestational age, preterm infants are introduced to the new feeding program. A one-year assessment found that using the infant-driven feeding protocols decreased the time it took infants to get the hang of eating on their own, improved parent’s confidence during feeding and helped babies shorten average hospital stay by four days.

“What’s impressive about our findings is how bigger preemies are getting to go home earlier than previously thought possible with traditional scheduled and volume-based methods,” Dr. Major-Kincade said.
Furthermore, findings from the year-long review also support increased collaborations between infants and caregivers, encouraged nursing and parent autonomy at the bedside, and enhanced parents’ confidence to care for their preemies.  

“I like how this lets babies tell us when they’re ready to eat,” said Dede Scholl, R.N., nurse manager for the Special Care Nursery at Texas Health Dallas. “It improves the quality of nipple feeding because the baby is actually awake and interested at the feeding time. As a result, each feeding becomes a victory for the infant as he or she continues to gain competency and pleasure in eating.” 

Each year, approximately 6,000 babies are born in the Margot Perot Center for Women and Infants at Texas Heath Dallas. More than 700 of these infants are born premature or have special needs and are admitted to the hospital’s level III NICU.

Baby Daphne spent two months in the NICU before she was transferred to the Special Care Nursery, where she thrived using the new feeding program.

Today, Daphne is home with her parents and pet dog Gracyee. 
“We’re excited to see how much Daphne is growing,” mom said, “and how big she’s getting.”

The program has also been implemented in nurseries at two Texas Health affiliated hospitals including Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth and Texas Health Arlington Memorial Hospital.

About Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas: Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas is an 898-bed acute care hospital and recognized clinical program leader, having provided compassionate care to the residents of Dallas and surrounding communities since 1966. US News and World Report has ranked Texas Health Dallas among the nation’s best hospitals in digestive disorders, orthopedics, and neurology and neurosurgery. An affiliate of the faith-based, nonprofit Texas Health Resources system, Texas Health Dallas has approximately 4,000 employees and an active medical staff of more than 1,000 physicians. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit www.TexasHealth.org.
Born prematurely at 29 weeks, Daphne Miller could fit in the palm of her mother’s hand.

Today, Daphne has doubled her weight and is home with
Texas Health Resources Hospitals Recognized as Top Performers by The Joint Commission





The hospitals were recognized for exemplary performance in using evidence-based clinical processes that are shown to improve care. The ratings are based on an aggregation of accountability measure data reported to The Joint Commission during the 2012 calendar year.

           Hospitals and the quality measures for which they are being recognized:

*         Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Azle<http://www.texashealth.org/azle>: Pneumonia and surgical care.

  *   Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Hurst-Euless-Bedford<http://www.texashealth.org/heb>: Heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia, surgical care, stroke and hospital-based inpatient psychiatric services.

*         Texas Health Heart & Vascular Hospital Arlington<http://www.texashealth.org/HeartVascularArlington>: Heart attack, heart failure and surgical care.

*         Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Kaufman<http://www.texashealth.org/kaufman>: Pneumonia, surgical care and stroke.

  *   Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Rockwall<http://www.texashealth.org/Rockwall>: Pneumonia and surgical care.

"Texas Health has an overarching commitment to quality that benefits patients across North Texas," said Dr. Daniel Varga, chief clinical officer and senior executive vice president for Texas Health. "This recognition by The Joint Commission is a tribute to the strong emphasis our physicians and staff place on the quality of care for each patient."

To be considered Top Performers, a hospital must score at least 95 percent in each accountability measure that it reports to The Joint Commission and for the specific measures outlined in this program. Each accountability measure represents an evidence-based practice. Examples include giving aspirin at arrival for heart attack patients or giving antibiotics one hour before surgery.

This year, 1,099 hospitals are being recognized, representing the top 33 percent of all Joint Commission-accredited hospitals reporting accountability measure performance data for 2012.

The Texas Health hospitals are recognized in The Joint Commission's "Improving America's Hospitals" annual report<http://www.jointcommission.org/annualreport.aspx> and on accreditation organization's Quality Check website (www.qualitycheck.org<http://www.qualitycheck.org>).

About Texas Health Resources: Texas Health Resources is one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health systems in the United States. The health system includes 25 acute care and short-stay hospitals that are owned, operated, joint-ventured or affiliated with Texas Health Resources. It includes the Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Arlington Memorial and Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Huguley Hospitals, Texas Health Physicians Group, outpatient facilities, behavioral health and home health, preventive and fitness services, and an organization for medical research and education.
Texas Health Resources hospitals in Azle, Bedford, Arlington, Kaufman and Rockwall have been recognized as Top Performers on Key Quality Measures(r) by the country's top accrediting agency for hospitals.
Slow erosion of voice turned into scream for help at UT Southwestern’s Clinical Center for Voice Care










The slow erosion of her voice quickly turned into scream for help. She met with several physicians around town, with a variety of suggestions from acid reflux medications to attempts at voice therapy, but several MRIs and specialists later, the medical consensus was stuck.

“I went to one doctor after another trying to find answers because by this time having a conversation was difficult and extremely aggravating for me. My words would come out of my mouth but something was chopping them up and I sounded a little as though I was being strangled while talking,” she said.

The problem started to affect more than just her voice.

“I began to withdraw socially and wouldn’t, and most of the time couldn’t, engage in conversation,” she said. “The look on people’s faces when they would pretend to understand me but really just wanted to turn around and walk away was hurting me almost as much as the struggle to speak.”

Eventually a community ear, nose and throat specialist referred her to UT Southwestern’s Clinical Center for Voice Care and Dr. Ted Mau, Director of the center and Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery. The center specializes in disorders of the voice and larynx (voice box) with a team of specially trained physicians and therapists. The voice center often attracts professionals like Ms. Valentin who rely on their voice — including singers, actors, public speakers, lawyers, ministers, and teachers.

Dr. Mau determined she had spasmodic dysphonia, a neurological problem in which muscles of the voice box spasm during speech. In Ms. Valentin’s case, the recommended treatment was Botox injections, which help loosen the muscles.

“Dr. Mau came highly recommended and my doctor had already heard such good things about what he was doing at UT Southwestern,” she said. “When Dr. Mau saw me on my first visit, I felt comfortable and reassured that this was finally the right diagnosis. He took the time to talk to me, listen to me, and explain the voice disorder to me. He completely walked me through each step of the injections.

“A couple of days after the Botox had settled into my vocal cords, I picked up the phone and called my sister,” who had accompanied her to sessions for moral support, she said. “She was so excited that although she could barely hear the volume of my voice, she could understand every word I said. We were both in tears.”

Ms. Valentin has since regained both her voice and her confidence. “I have additional help and support from a wonderful voice therapist, Amy Hamilton, who is also at the voice center. She has taught me valuable techniques and exercises to help me get the most benefit out of my Botox injections,” Ms. Valentin said. “I can’t say enough thanks to a team of caring professionals who not only allowed me to communicate more effectively, but have given me my voice back!” 

“The voice is really the window to your soul. People’s emotions are very tied to their voice,” noted Dr. Mau. “Especially for those who depend on their voice for their profession and their livelihood, we are able to help and really make a difference in their lives.”

Dr. Mau suggests seeking medical help when voice problems persist, particularly if there is no clear reason. People experiencing voice problems, such as hoarseness or changes in pitch, lasting more than three weeks, as well as those with persistent laryngitis or a sudden loss of voice should see a specialist.

Services offered at the UT Southwestern Clinical Center for Voice Care include:

·       Videostroboscopy, which allows patients to see how their vocal cords function.

·       Voice therapy, to teach techniques designed to correct vocal patterns that may contribute to vocal abuse or misuse.

·       Botulinum toxin (Botox) injections, which treat spasmodic dysphonia.

·       Thyroplasty and vocal fold injection augmentation, procedures to strengthen weak vocal cords that are causing hoarseness or breathy-sounding voice.

·       Microsurgery of the vocal folds, a minimally invasive procedure to remove polyps or cysts.

For more information on voice disorders and solutions, go to UT Southwestern’s Clinical Center for Voice Care, read Dr. Mau’s voice tips, or call 214-645-8300.

About UT Southwestern Medical Center: UT Southwestern, one of the premier academic medical centers in the nation, integrates pioneering biomedical research with exceptional clinical care and education. The institution’s faculty has many distinguished members, including five who have been awarded Nobel Prizes since 1985. Numbering more than 2,700, the faculty is responsible for groundbreaking medical advances and is committed to translating science-driven research quickly to new clinical treatments. UT Southwestern physicians provide medical care in 40 specialties to nearly 90,000 hospitalized patients
As a receiving coordinator for a large toy company, Barbara Valentin is on the phone a lot. But it was people on the other end of the line who were first to notice something was amiss.

“I had always received comments about what a nice voice I had, but I started hearing comments like “What’s wrong with your voice” to “Oh my, are you sick?” My oldest sister was the first to notice the choppiness to my voice even when I didn’t recognize anything was wrong,” she recalled. “Gradually it got worse. Rarely a day went by that I didn’t have to explain to someone that no, I wasn’t sick.”
Parkland offers free health screenings at 11th annual Men's Health Conference
'The Art of Manliness' theme encourages healthy lifestyles 








cost for attending.

The program will feature health seminars, screenings for cholesterol, glucose, blood pressure and prostate (PSA), along with consultations with medical providers. Low cost flu shots will be available and education and application assistance will be provided for enrollment in the Health Insurance Marketplace. Informational sessions will be offered in both English and Spanish. Lunch will also be served.

“The Men’s Health Conference offers men an opportunity to receive multiple screenings, get to know their numbers and discuss the significance of the results with a licensed medical provider,” said Ron Session, Senior Community Development Specialist at Parkland’s Garland Health Center and coordinator of the Men’s Health Conference.

“Men should regularly participate in primary health care and have a regular examination throughout every decade of their lives,” said Noel Santini, MD, Medical Director of Parkland’s Community Oriented Primary Care health centers. “Each decade brings on new health opportunities and by participating in regular check-ups, men are able to act on their health care concerns rather than react.”

The most common health conditions experienced by men include heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, low testosterone and cancer. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men in the United States, killing 307,225 men in 2009 alone. The Prostate Health Guide reports that each year more than 230,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer and about 30,000 will die from the disease.

Parkland physicians provide the following health tips for males of all ages:

• Get to know your numbers and have them checked regularly by your medical provider based on your risk factors and clinical practice recommendations. This includes blood pressure, A1C, body mass index, triglycerides and cholesterol.
• Consume minimal amounts of salt, sugar and fat.
• Exercise regularly and control your weight.
• Have the recommended screening tests or exams for testicular, colon, prostate, skin cancers, etc.
• Drink alcohol only in moderation.
• Do not smoke.

For more information or to pre-register for the event, contact Ron Session at 214.266.0651. Participants may also register at the door.
Most men would say getting an annual checkup is about as much fun as getting a root canal. But despite their reluctance to visit a doctor, it’s essential for men to know their numbers and take responsibility for their own health. To help them get started, Parkland Health & Hospital System, along with the Men’s Health Advisory Board, is sponsoring the 2013 Men’s Health Conference from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 16 at the Dallas Public Library, 1515 Young St., Dallas, 75201. Titled “The Art of Manliness,” the conference is open to male residents of Dallas County. There is no
New members named to Parkland Board of Managers







“We welcome Dr. Dobbs-Wiggins and Dr. Woods,” said Debbie Branson, chair of the Parkland Board of Managers. “With their backgrounds in healthcare, they bring valuable knowledge and important perspectives to the Parkland board. Their insights will be extremely helpful as we continue to meet the challenges and opportunities of today’s rapidly changing healthcare environment. I also want to again thank Eddie Reeves and Dr. Roberto de la Cruz for their service to Parkland and the community as members of the board.”

Dr. Dobbs-Wiggins is a Board Certified Psychiatrist and Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and is in private practice in Dallas. She is also an ordained minister and Adjunct Professor of the Practice of Pastoral Care at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University. Dr. Dobbs-Wiggins received her bachelor’s degree in Biology (cum laude) from Harvard College in Cambridge, MA and her medical degree from Harvard Medical School in Boston. She completed her residency in Psychiatry at Timberlawn Psychiatric Hospital in Dallas.

Dr. Woods, a registered nurse, is Associate Dean and Associate Professor at the Houston J. and Florence A. Doswell College of Nursing, Texas Woman’s University, Dallas Campus. Her first full-time nursing position was at Parkland Memorial Hospital. She received her bachelor’s degree from Texas Woman’s University and her master of science in nursing degree from The University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio. Dr. Woods earned her doctorate from The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing.
Dallas County Commissioners have named Paula Dobbs-Wiggins, MD, and Stephanie Woods, PhD, to Parkland Health & Hospital System’s Board of Managers.

Drs. Dobbs-Wiggins and Woods are at-large appointees named jointly by the Commissioners Court and replace Eddie Reeves and Roberto de la Cruz, MD, who resigned in August.
Parkland's epilepsy program is among busiest in Texas
November is National Epilepsy Awareness Month








“As I got older, the seizures were happening more often. There were a lot of things I couldn’t do – like drive a car. Your entire life is different because you don’t know when one could happen,” he said, noting that his seizures only lasted a minute or so, but during that time, he “was completely out of it, like I was blind.”

Garcia’s condition is not unusual. Epilepsy is a medical condition that produces seizures affecting a variety of mental and physical functions, according to the Epilepsy Foundation. It is also called a seizure disorder. When a person has two or more unprovoked seizures, they are considered to have epilepsy. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that epilepsy affects 2.2 million Americans and 65 million people worldwide.

What is unusual is that Garcia’s wife, Maricela, also has epilepsy and in 2012, during National Epilepsy Awareness Month, she too, had life-changing surgery and is now seizure free.

“I think she was worried about having the surgery,” Garcia said of his wife of 26 years. “And I can understand. But I told her to have faith in the doctors, and in God. I told her she was going to have a brand new life – just like I have. The best part is our children used to worry about us – and now they don’t.”

While medications and other treatments help many people of all ages who live with epilepsy, more than a million people continue to have seizures that can severely limit their school achievements, employment prospects and participation in all of life’s experiences. If a candidate, some patients may have surgery that eliminates seizures, while others may be on medication regimens to combat the onset of seizures. It strikes most often among the very young and the very old, although anyone can develop epilepsy at any age. In the U.S., it affects more than 300,000 children under the age of 15 – more than 90,000 of whom have seizures that cannot be adequately treated.

Epilepsy can also be mis-categorized, according to Paul Van Ness, MD, medical director of Parkland’s Epilepsy Monitoring Unit and Epilepsy Outreach Program. Parkland’s epilepsy program follows eight stringent quality measures outlined by the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) and Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement (PCPI) that assure patients are receiving the latest evidence-based treatment. The measures ensure documentation of seizure type and frequency; etiology of epilepsy or epilepsy syndrome; ordering and/or review of at least one EEG and MRI/CT scan; querying and counseling about antiepileptic drug side effects; surgical therapy referral consideration for intractable epilepsy; counseling about epilepsy specific safety issues; and counseling for women of childbearing potential with epilepsy.

“About a quarter of the people with uncontrolled seizures that we evaluate turn out to have another condition that needs a different treatment,” Dr. Van Ness said. “It can be situations such as sleep disorders or a heart disorder. Testing needs to take place to get an accurate diagnosis.”

More than 500 patients a year are treated in Parkland’s epilepsy program – one of the busiest in the state. The program also features an 11-bed inpatient unit where patients are monitored 24/7 for seizures. Through the outreach program, patients have access to nurses and social workers who meet in Parkland’s Community Oriented Primary Care health centers, or for those who cannot get to a clinic, through a program called Project UPLIFT, a phone-based group for patients who suffer from depression, anxiety and/or are in need of overall improvement in stress management and coping skills.

For more information on Parkland’s Epilepsy Outreach program, visit www.parklandhospital.com/medical_services/outreach/epilepsy_outreach
Genaro Garcia vividly recalls the day he suffered his first epileptic seizure. He was just 5 years old and standing in the kitchen of his beloved grandmother when the first episode happened. And, he remembers the day that he says he was “given a new life” thanks to the physicians at Parkland Memorial Hospital.

Fourteen years ago, Garcia, now 49, had surgery that stopped the seizures he had been experiencing two or three times a day since childhood.
Stuff the family with fruits and vegetables this Thanksgiving
By Angel Biasatti
Director Community Relations and Marketing/Methodist Mansfield Medical Center










People should also watch the portions they eat and eat in moderation throughout the day.  “Prepare traditional recipes without sugar by substituting alternative ingredients like sweet apples, orange juice, or sugar alternatives,” she recommends. “You may also want to bring a lower fat or sugar-free dessert for sharing with others to help you stay balanced.”

“We encourage people to reduce their risk of developing diabetes or other health issues like GERD [Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease] by adopting a healthy, nutritious program,” says Melissa Gerdes, a family medicine physician on the medical staff at Methodist Mansfield. “And if you have diabetes, controlling your blood glucose, blood pressure, cholesterol, and diet can prevent or delay complications of the disease.

“It is very important to get as much exercise as possible so that you are helping your body with the goodies that are around during the holidays,” Dr. Gerdes continues. “Go out and walk, and increase your physical activity to really help yourself.”

One reason diabetes has become so prevalent is that the typical American diet is high in fat and carbohydrates. When combined with lack of exercise, these habits become strong risk factors that cause many adults to develop type 2 diabetes.

Current figures show that adults in the United States with diabetes are on the rise, and it is thought that one-third of those may have the disease without knowing it, according to the National Institute of Health. In addition, about one out of every four adults has what’s called prediabetes.

It may start out as too much sugar, but there are serious consequences of raised blood glucose, especially when accompanied by other issues such as high blood pressure and cholesterol. Diabetes is also a risk factor for other conditions such as cardiac disease and stroke.

People with diabetes have high levels of glucose, or sugar, in their blood because their bodies have issues using or producing insulin. 

A new diabetes support program is now offered at Methodist Mansfield that helps educate patients on how to manage the disease. The program is free and offered on the second Thursday of the month from 7 to 8 p.m. inside classroom C by the Mansfield Café.

Managing your dietary habits is a lifelong commitment. But if you embrace the challenge, you’ll not only feel better and have more energy, you’ll make an important investment in your health.
Don’t let the homemade dressing, roasted turkey, and pumpkin pie get you off balance this Thanksgiving season. Instead, stuff the family with lots of fruits and vegetables and go light on the desserts, gravy, and mashed potatoes. Plan to eat smaller portions this Thanksgiving, taking time to savor the flavors while you enjoy time with family.

“You can enjoy holiday goodies and still manage your weight by following a flexible meal plan and counting your carbohydrates,” says Gail Bubel, RN, CDE, Medical Home Care Navigator and Diabetes Education Coordinator for Methodist Mansfield Medical Center. “There are no forbidden foods if you count them as part of your total carbohydrates.”
Texas Health Dallas becomes first Texas hospital to open March of Dimes NICU Family Support Bright Space for Siblings





with the March of Dimes Dallas Division and the Bright Horizons Foundation for Children. 

Bright Spaces, the signature program of the Bright Horizons Foundation for Children, creates warm, enriching playrooms in organizations that give children and families a special place to gather together and have fun. The Bright Space at Texas Health Dallas is the first Bright Space for Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Special Care Nursery siblings in Texas and only 1 of 8 to be in a NICU in the U.S.

“This Bright Space will allow families to be together and support each other,” said David Lissy, CEO of Bright Horizons Family Solutions. “We hope it will maintain a sense of normalcy for siblings and families of NICU babies.”

For new mom Shiloh Morris, the idea of a Bright Space for siblings is music to her ears. Baby Noah was born in October and spent several weeks in both the NICU and Special Care Nursery at Texas Health Dallas. Big sister Nevaeh frequently visited her brother and mom while they stayed in the hospital and most of the time they found themselves in the family room watching TV.

“This was a new experience for Nevaeh, who is 6, and at times I could tell she was really worried about her brother and me,” Morris said. “I think adding this space will be a welcome distraction for kiddos like her and their families. They can play together and not focus on being in the hospital.”

She added that as a mom of two, you know you need to be there for the baby but it’s also important to make sure you have a chance to relax and bond with your older child during this time.

In addition to serving as a gathering place for families, the Bright Space at Texas Health Dallas will offer hope and inspiration through beautiful photography and inspiring quotes mounted on the walls. It also includes special materials for sibling with a particular focus on pretend play involving baby dolls, home living and medical play.

“It is truly an honor to have been selected as the first Bright Space in Texas,” said Suzanne Murphy, director of women’s services at Texas Health Dallas. “Families are a vital part of our care team so we are pleased to offer this new, comforting space to the siblings and families as an extension of our family-centered approach to care.”
“We are proud to launch the Texas Chapter’s first NICU Family Support Bright Spaces for Siblings program in Dallas,” Julie Whitsitt, March of Dimes Dallas Division executive director, said. “When a baby is born too soon or with birth defects, the entire family suffers.  Our partnership with Bright Horizons and Texas Health Dallas will allow us to bring comfort and emotional support to local NICU families. We are very grateful to our partners for their hard work and support in making this program possible.”

About Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas: Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas is an 898-bed acute care hospital and recognized clinical program leader, having provided compassionate care to the residents of Dallas and surrounding communities since 1966. US News and World Report has ranked Texas Health Dallas among the nation’s best hospitals in digestive disorders, orthopedics, and neurology and neurosurgery. An affiliate of the faith-based, nonprofit Texas Health Resources system, Texas Health Dallas has approximately 4,000 employees and an active medical staff of more than 1,000 physicians. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit www.TexasHealth.org.

About Bright Horizons Family Solutions: Bright Horizons Family Solutions is the world’s leading provider of employer-sponsored child care, early education and work/life solutions. The company operates child care and early education centers across the United States, Europe and Canada. The Bright Horizons Foundation for Children was founded in 1999 to help forward the vision of Bright Horizons Family Solutions to brighten the lives of children, youth, and families in crisis. Bright Spaces is a program of the Foundation, creating dedicated play areas in homeless shelters and community agencies. There are now more than 280 Bright Spaces located in shelters in more than 35 states around the country and Europe, serving thousands of children each year. More information is at www.brighthorizonsfoundation.org.

About the March of Dimes: The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters and divisions nationwide, the March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. For the latest resources and information, visit marchofdimes.com/texas or nacersano.org. 
Families with newborns in the Margot Perot Center for Women and Infants at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas will now have a new Bright Space where they can play and have fun — thanks to an innovative partnership
Parkland expert says quitting smoking should be #1 health priority
Smokers urged to quit during Great American Smokeout, Nov. 21 






every five deaths in the U.S. each year. Smoking cessation is the single most important step anyone can take to improve their health and longevity.”

Each year the American Cancer Society encourages Americans to snuff out their cigarettes, pipes and cigars and throw away the chewing tobacco on Great American Smokeout Day, scheduled for Nov. 21 this year. In addition to causing lung cancer, smoking increases the risk of many serious conditions, including chronic obstructive lung diseases, coronary heart disease, stroke, abdominal aortic aneurysm, and multiple types of cancer, including acute myeloid leukemia, bladder cancer, cancer of the cervix, larynx and esophagus, as well as kidney, pancreatic, stomach and oral cavity (mouth) cancers. Smoking also contributes to infertility, preterm delivery, stillbirth, low birth weight and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). And for older women, smoking is associated with lower bone density, increasing the risk of hip fracture.

With an estimated 45 million smokers in the U.S., more than 13 million cigar smokers and another 2.2 million who smoke tobacco in pipes, there are huge health care costs associated with tobacco use. Researchers at Ohio State University this year found that a smoker costs a private employer in the U.S. nearly $6,000 a year compared with a nonsmoker. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that smoking costs $193 billion in health expenses and lost productivity.

“Tobacco is addictive and quitting can be hard,” Dr. Girod acknowledged. “That’s why we encourage people to take advantage of smoking cessation programs like the one offered at Parkland’s Smoking Cessation Clinic, which provides services to adult patients who have decided to quit smoking but need extra help. Through medical therapy and behavioral counseling, patients who have tried to quit smoking before but weren’t successful, or those who have never tried before, can kick the habit and improve their health outlook.”

Located in the Outpatient Clinic at Parkland Memorial Hospital, the Smoking Cessation Clinic meets on Monday afternoons from 1 to 5 p.m. and requires a referral from the patient’s primary care physician. The Patient Access Center will contact you to set up an appointment when your referral is approved. For more information, please call 214.590.5603.
If there is one change people could make in their lives to most effectively prevent disease and premature death, it’s quitting smoking.

According to Parkland Health & Hospital System pulmonologist Carlos Girod, MD, Chief of Medicine Services, “Tobacco use accounts for more than 440,000 deaths, or nearly one of
Parkland named one of safest hospitals by Security magazine
Police department named to annual list for fourth consecutive year








secure environment for patients, staff and visitors.

Members of the Dallas County Hospital District Police Department continually conduct training programs such as workplace violence prevention, infant protection, active shooter training and security awareness for employees. In addition, officers are responsible for patrolling more than 11 million square feet of property owned or managed by Parkland.

“We take our responsibility as sworn officers of the law very seriously,” said Kenneth Cheatle, Chief of the Dallas County Hospital District Police Department. “Thanks to the diligence, expertise and dedication of the entire police department, our patients, visitors and our Parkland colleagues have peace of mind knowing that they can come to work in a safe and secure environment.”

Unlike most hospitals in the United States, Parkland has its own fully operational police department, including investigations, patrol, parking, communication and a crime prevention unit. The department, which was the first of its kind in Texas, is comprised of 67 sworn officers and 50 non-sworn employees. Officers respond to more than 100,000 calls each year.

The “2013 Security 500” list is based on data from a security industry benchmarking survey as well as public resources and records. The list can be found at http://www.securitymagazine.com .
The Dallas County Hospital District (Parkland) Police Department has been ranked 14th on Security magazine’s “2013 Security 500” list, recognizing organizations worldwide for best security practices. Parkland is among 80 hospitals and medical centers from across the country named to the list.

This is the fourth time the Dallas County Hospital District Police Department has received national recognition from the publication for its efforts in creating a safe and
Parkland's trauma program continues to excel
Technology has changed in last 50 years, but staff passion remains the same








injury, and physicians can easily talk to medics in the field prior to the patients’ arrival at the hospital. But one thing that hasn’t changed in 50 years is the dedication of healthcare professionals.

“The care we provide today is a whole lot smarter, a whole lot leaner because of the work done in the past,” said Parkland’s Interim Trauma Medical Director, Alexander Eastman, MD. “The nuts and bolts are different just because technology has changed, but there are also things that are fundamentally different.”

“For example, we operate a lot less today than we did in 1963,” said Erwin Thal, MD, a semi-retired Parkland trauma surgeon who was a resident in training 50 years ago. “We didn’t have the means to do the scans and tests that are available today so we’d do exploratory surgery to identify and repair the injury. Recent studies now indicate many of the conditions we used to operate on can now be safely observed without surgery.”

The five decades have also seen a significant change in the use of tourniquets. Dr. Thal said they weren’t used in the ‘60s but their use has re-emerged as a way to stop hemorrhaging in controlled circumstances.

But despite the latest gadget or trend, what hasn’t changed is the passion for caring for the sick and injured patients of Dallas County.

“The interaction with people is the same. It can be difficult, upsetting, terrifying, exhilarating and a blessing all at the same time,” Dr. Eastman said. “We still see people who come in as a result of things that are preventable such as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. But we also see those individuals who, for no fault of their own, need help. That’s what makes this job so rewarding.”

“The downside,” Dr. Thal interjected, “was seeing kids, or the patients that you couldn’t save. That was always hard for me because as a doctor, especially a trauma doctor, you like to think you can save everyone.”

Drs. Eastman and Thal believe their service to Parkland patients has had a great impact on their lives.

“I can’t think of any other place I’d rather be,” Dr. Eastman said. “And it’s people like Dr. Thal who paved the way for those of us here today. We all owe a lot to those who came before us.”
As the anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s death nears, Parkland Memorial Hospital has once again been thrust into the national spotlight. In the 50 years since the President’s death, there have been changes in the Trauma Center at Parkland both in the physical layout and in the way medicine is practiced.

Technology, of course, has been the most significant change – wireless devices abound, state-of-the-art equipment can quickly help physicians diagnose an illness or
Parkland offers free health screenings at Fall Care Fair
Help enrolling in Health Insurance Marketplace also available 







In addition, both Spanish and English-speaking Parkland staff will be on hand to answer questions about the Affordable Care Act and provide help enrolling in the Health Insurance Marketplace.

“Parkland’s Certified Application Counselors are trained to assist people interested in applying for Marketplace coverage,” said Bob Reed, Vice President, Patient Access. “They will be at the Fall Care Fair on Dec. 7, and the public can also get help enrolling during regular business hours by visiting the Business Office at Parkland Memorial Hospital, 5201 Harry Hines Blvd., Dallas, 75235, or at any of Parkland’s Community Oriented Primary Care (COPC) health centers in the county.”

For a list of health center locations, visit www.parklandhospital.com. For more information about the Fall Care Fair, call Angela Morris, Community Relations Manager, at 214.590.1152.
Parkland Health & Hospital System is encouraging area residents to “fall” into good health at the upcoming Fall Care Fair taking place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 7 at Parkland’s Southeast Dallas Health Center, 9202 Elam Road, Dallas, 75217. The free health fair will include health information in both English and Spanish, screenings for cholesterol, glucose, blood pressure, height, weight and body mass index (BMI), along with information about community resources. Free parking is available.
MRI Interventions & IMRIS technologies combine to lessen anxiety of DBS surgery on pediatric patients at Cook Children's Medical Center
Patients can sleep during deep brain stimulation procedure using intraoperative tools






by utilizing the combination of MRI Interventions' ClearPoint® Neuro Intervention System and an IMRIS VISIUS® Surgical Theatre for real-time intraoperative image guidance and procedure visualization.

"The VISIUS iMRI and ClearPoint guidance platform make DBS surgery an option for these children," said Dr. John Honeycutt, Medical Director of the Cook Children's Department of Neurosurgery, who led the first two pediatric asleep DBS procedures in early November. "It is very difficult for children to remain awake during surgery, and the real-time intraoperative visualization and guidance we use with these technologies means
they do not have to."

DBS surgery is usually performed on patients who are awake so the surgeon can assess the placement of leads (wires) by observing the effect of stimulation in an area of the brain. This is very difficult for children to manage, and children with dystonia have a lot of involuntary movement. However, the combination of ClearPoint and VISIUS iMRI technologies enables Dr. Honeycutt to observe the surgical instruments and exact target location in the patient's brain throughout the operation in real time, allowing these young patients to sleep through surgery and reduce the anxiety associated with it.

Using these technologies, Dr. Honeycutt is able to see and select the desired neurological target area, establish a trajectory, and visualize the target on MR images as the electrode is inserted to the desired location.
Dystonia is a debilitating neurological movement disorder that causes involuntary muscle contractions and twisting and repetitive movements. DBS is an important therapeutic option for patients for whom medication is not adequate treatment. The therapy involves the implantation of a brain "pacemaker" device system, usually below the shoulder which sends electrical impulses through wires to specific parts of the brain. The electrical
impulses are intended to interfere with the neural activity that causes the involuntary movement and painful muscle contractions. Unfortunately, children with dystonia often do not make good candidates for conventional DBS surgery due to the awake nature of the lead placement procedure.

For neurosurgery, VISIUS iMRI at Cook Children's uniquely brings high-field MRI to the patient inside the operating room on ceiling-mounted rails. The fully integrated suite allows the scanner to move between an operating room and a diagnostic room, providing ondemand access to high resolution MR images - before, during and after procedures without moving the patient.

The ClearPoint platform is the only technology that enables minimally-invasive neurosurgery under continuous MRI guidance, which provides superior visualization of the brain's tissue compared to other imaging technologies and is the only imaging technology that will safely allow continuous soft tissue visualization during surgery.
In addition to asleep DBS, the ClearPoint system has been used within a VISIUS Surgical Theatre to facilitate focal laser ablation and direct drug delivery in the brain.

"As one of a select group of pediatric neurosurgical centers with an IMRIS iMRI today and one of the largest neurosurgical programs in the Southwest, we continue to demonstrate our institution's commitment to the care of children with these complex neurological disorders," Honeycutt added. "Our adoption of the ClearPoint system in the VISIUS iMRI to enable asleep DBS for these young patients is representative of this commitment."

About IMRIS, Inc. IMRIS (NASDAQ: IMRS; TSX: IM) is a global leader in providing image guided therapy
solutions through its VISIUS Surgical Theatre - a revolutionary, multifunctional surgical environment that provides unmatched intraoperative vision to clinicians to assist in decision making and enhance precision in treatment. The multi-room suites incorporate diagnostic quality high-field MR, CT and angio modalities accessed effortlessly in theoperating room setting. VISIUS Surgical Theatres serve the neurosurgical, spinal, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular markets and have been selected by 54 leading medical institutions around the world.

About MRI Interventions, Inc. Founded in 1998, MRI Interventions is creating innovative platforms for performing the next generation of minimally invasive surgical procedures in the brain and heart. Utilizing a hospital's existing MRI suite, the company's FDA-cleared and CE-marked ClearPoint® System is designed to enable a range of minimally invasive procedures in the brain. In partnership with Siemens Healthcare, MRI Interventions is developing the ClearTrace® System to enable MRI-guided catheter ablations to treat cardiac arrhythmias,
including atrial fibrillation. Building on the imaging power of MRI, the company's interventional platforms strive to improve patient care while reducing procedure costs and times. MRI Interventions is also working with Boston Scientific Corporation to incorporate its MRI-safety technologies into Boston Scientific's implantable leads for cardiac and neurological applications. For more information, please visit www.mriinterventions.com.
iMRIS Inc. (NASDAQ: IMRS; TSX: IM) ("IMRIS") and MRI Interventions, Inc. (OTCQB: MRIC) today announced that Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth, Texas, is the first U.S. pediatric hospital to offer asleep deep brain stimulation (DBS) surgery to children suffering from dystonia
Margot Perot Center at Texas Health Dallas celebrates 30th anniversary
Perot family honored for their role in changing the face of women’s health care






What began as an idea to build a hospital focusing on the unique needs of women and infants became a reality in part because of the vision and partnership of the Perot family.

“We had a dream to partner with the Perot’s on a project that would help bring new life into the world in a state-of-the-art complex,” said Doug Hawthorne, CEO of Texas Health Resources. “We wanted to provide leading-edge clinical care to women in their greatest time of need, bringing hope to them and their families. I’m proud that the dream came to life and is everything we thought it had the potential to become.”

Today, more than 5,000 babies are born each year at the Margot Perot Center — almost 15 per day. The Labor-and-Delivery unit features 120 in-patient beds, 15 labor-and-delivery suites, a special unit solely dedicated to high-risk pregnancies and a Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. The 47 bed NICU was designed with the family in mind, complete with private parent rooms and 10 internet-based ‘Peek-A-Boo’ cameras that allow parents who can’t be at their child’s bedside to see and talk to their baby any time of day from any computer or smartphone.

For infants who’ve graduated from the NICU but aren’t ready to go home yet, the Special Care Nursery also provides private rooms where parents can stay with their infants during hospitalization. This unit was the first in the region to provide these accommodations to parents. They are also leaders in the area of infant-driven feeding protocols, which aims to send premature babies home faster.

“You don’t really understand the magnitude of your work until you step back and see how many lives have been changed here at the Margot Perot Center,” said Dr. Eugene Hunt, chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Texas Health Dallas. “It’s an honor for all of us here to be a part of a family’s joy while welcoming a newborn or celebrating a significant milestone in the NICU.” 

Throughout the years, the Margot Perot Center has grown well beyond labor-and-delivery services. In addition, the center offers the community a comprehensive breast care program including breast imaging and breast surgery, a women’s oncology program and a full array of gynecological services, from cutting edge minimally invasive procedures for common health conditions to complex surgeries for advanced disease and conditions of aging.

“We pride ourselves as being a leader and innovator in providing women’s health care,” said Virginia Rose-Harris, vice president and administrator of the Margot Perot Center, Texas Health Dallas. “Comprehensive women’s care defines who we are at our very core.”

Driven by the Perot family’s original vision to treat women throughout every stage in life, the Margot Perot Center offers programs and services tailored to meet the needs of moms-to-be, new moms and infants, daughters, sisters and grandmothers.

“For 30 years the Margot Perot Center has had the privilege of caring for generations of families and we look forward to continuing to do so,” said Britt Berrett, Ph. D., president of Texas Health Dallas. “We are also a hospital of firsts and continue to be recognized nationally for best outcomes and quality care. This is a true reflection of the work of our dedicated nurses and physicians on our medical staff.”

The breast cancer program was the first in North Texas and one of the first in the country to offer 3-D mammography. This technology allows for a more thorough view and has proven successful in early diagnosis and improving outcomes.

In addition, the Marot Perot Center’s Assisted Reproductive Technology Services Program, which was named one of the “10 Best Fertility Centers” in the United States by Child magazine, offers a wide variety of infertility treatments, from basic care to some of the most advanced procedures available. 

Recently, the Perot family was honored with the presentation of a glass sculpture called “The Family”, which is now on display in the lobby of the Margot Perot Center. This piece of art was designed to commemorate the history of the hospital and the countless lives that have been changed under its roof.
“We are honored to have been a part of the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital family for 30 years,” said Margot Perot. “The center has truly exceeded our expectations in providing exceptional care for so many women and infants in Dallas.”

About Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas: Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas is an 898-bed acute care hospital and recognized clinical program leader, having provided compassionate care to the residents of Dallas and surrounding communities since 1966. US News and World Report has ranked Texas Health Dallas among the nation’s best hospitals in digestive disorders, orthopedics, and neurology and neurosurgery. An affiliate of the faith-based, nonprofit Texas Health Resources system, Texas Health Dallas has approximately 4,000 employees and an active medical staff of more than 1,000 physicians. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit www.TexasHealth.org.
Thirty years ago, the cries of the first baby echoed through the new hallways of the Margot Perot Center for Women and Infants at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas. Since then more than 120,000 babies have taken their first breaths within these walls.
Texas Health Physicians Group announces hiring of first Chief Medical Officer
Appointment of family medicine specialist Dr. Adam Myers completes group’s physician leadership structure
 








alone,” Myers said. “The opportunity to partner with other Texas Health Physicians Group members in maximizing quality for the patients entrusted to us, ensuring stewardship of the resources we have to work with, and enhancing the joy of clinical practice brings great personal gratification.”

Myers will lead quality initiatives, clinical resource utilization, use of clinical information technology, medical education and physician performance monitoring for physician practices within Texas Health Physicians Group. Serving as a critical link in the continuum of care, the physicians group furthers Texas Health’s strategy of transforming itself from a hospital-centric organization to a patient-centered, fully integrated health system.
A New York City native, Myers is board-certified in family medicine and was in private practice in Oklahoma for more than 10 years before moving to Dallas in 2010 to serve as chief medical officer and senior vice president for Methodist Health System.

Myers is an accomplished clinician, business leader, author and humanitarian and will bring great value to the physicians group’s endeavors. He has earned numerous professional credentials including the status of Fellow with the American College of Healthcare Executives, The American Institute of Healthcare Quality and the American Association of Family Physicians. He holds additional board certification in healthcare quality management and patient safety, and he’s a certified professional in healthcare risk management.

About Texas Health Physicians Group: Texas Health Physicians Group is Texas Health Resources’ 501(a) not-for-profit physician organization based in Arlington. The group includes more than 840 physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and medical professionals dedicated to providing safe, quality care for our patients. In addition to our primary and specialty practices, the organization’s network includes sleep lab services, infusion services, and diagnostic imaging in more than 230 locations in Collin, Dallas, Denton, Johnson, Parker and Tarrant counties.

About Texas Health Resources: Texas Health Resources is one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health systems in the United States. The health system includes 25 acute care and short-stay hospitals that are owned, operated, joint-ventured or affiliated with Texas Health Resources. It includes the Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Arlington Memorial, Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Huguley Hospitals, Texas Health Physicians Group, outpatient facilities, behavioral health and home health, preventive and fitness services, and an organization for medical research and education.

For more information about Texas Health Resources, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit TexasHealth.org.
Adam Myers, M.D., became Chief Medical Officer of Texas Health Physicians Group in November. This new executive position helps fulfill Texas Health Resources’ goal to bring more physicians into leadership roles across the system. Along with Dr. Shawn Parsley, who was named president of Texas Health Physicians Group in October, physicians now serve in clinical leader positions at all levels of the health system.

“All of the physicians in Texas Health Physicians Group pursued medicine to make a difference. Together, we can make that aspiration a reality in bigger ways than we ever could
Parkland names new Associate Chief Nursing Officer







reorganization, creating care coordinator and assistant manager positions on nursing units to promote relationship-based care and coordination at the unit/patient level. She also was responsible for nursing leadership, practice, standards and policies for more than 1,250 nurses.

Prior to that, she served as Director of Women & Infants and Medical/Surgical & Oncology at Zale Lipshy and St. Paul University Hospitals. Richardson also worked in several nurse leadership positions at St. Paul Medical Center including Director of Women’s Services, nurse manager, assistant nurse manager and charge nurse.

Richardson began her career as a staff nurse at The University of Arkansas Hospital in Little Rock.

“Donna Richardson’s broad experiences leading the nursing program at University Hospitals of the UT Southwestern Medical Center make her a valuable asset to Parkland’s nursing team,” said Mary Eagen, RN, Executive Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer. “We are delighted to welcome her to Parkland and look forward to her contributions as we continue to focus on quality, patient safety and nursing excellence.”

Richardson holds a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from Texas Christian University and a Master of Science in Nursing from The University of Texas, Tyler. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from The University of Arkansas, Little Rock. Richardson participated in the Johnson & Johnson/Wharton Fellowship Program for Nurse Executives, is a member of the Texas Organization of Nurse Executives, American Nurses Association and the Texas Nurses Association where she serves on the TNA Nursing Practice Committee.
Donna Richardson, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, has been named Associate Chief Nursing Officer for Parkland Health & Hospital System. She assumed her duties on Dec. 9.

Richardson comes to Parkland from The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center where she served as Chief Nursing Officer and Associate Vice President for University Hospitals-Zale Lipshy and St. Paul. In her role as CNO, Richardson led nursing
Prevent accidental fires this holiday season
Home fires are more prevalent in winter than any other season






“We want everyone to enjoy this holiday season without worrying about keeping their homes and loved ones safe,” said Shelli Stephens-Stidham, director of the Injury Prevention Center of Greater Dallas, housed at Parkland. “While decorating your home, be aware of potential fire hazards and take appropriate safety precautions.”

Although uncommon, Christmas tree fires are likely to be serious when they occur. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), on average one of every 66 reported fires that began with a Christmas tree resulted in death. Unlike Christmas tree fires, fires started by candles are much more common. On average, a candle fire in the home is reported every 40 minutes. Holiday lights and other decorative lighting with line voltage, meaning the lights are running on the line voltage of the home without a transformer, were involved in an estimated average of 160 home fires per year from 2006-2012, reports the NFPA.

To ensure that the holidays remain safe for everyone, the Consumer Product Safety Commission and American Academy of Pediatrics recommend the following safety tips:

Trees
• When purchasing an artificial tree, look for the label “fire resistant.”
• When purchasing a live tree, check for freshness. A fresh tree’s green needles are hard to pull from branches and when bent between your fingers, needles do not break. The trunk butt of a fresh tree is sticky with resin and when tapped on the ground, the tree should not lose many needles.
• Place the tree away from fireplaces, radiators or portable heaters.
• Cut a few inches off the trunk of the tree to expose the fresh wood, which allows for better water absorption and will help keep the tree from drying out and becoming a fire hazard.
• Be sure to keep the stand filled with water, because heated rooms can dry out live trees rapidly.

Lights
• Check all holiday indoor and outdoor lights, including those that were just purchased, before hanging them on the tree or outside. Make sure all the bulbs are in good working order and there are no frayed wires, broken sockets or loose connections.
• Never use electric lights on a metallic tree. The tree can become charged with electricity from faulty lights and a person touching a branch could be electrocuted.
• Before using lights outdoors, check labels to be sure they have been certified for outdoor use. To hold lights in place, string them through hooks or insulated staples, not nails or tacks. Never pull or tug on lights to remove them.
• Plug all outdoor electric decorations into circuits with ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) to avoid potential shocks.
• Turn off all lights before going to bed or leaving the house.

Decorations
• Use only non-combustible or flame-resistant materials to trim a tree. Choose tinsel or artificial icicles of plastic or nonleaded metals.
• Never use lighted candles on a tree or near other evergreens. Always use non-flammable holders, and place candles where they will not be knocked over and out of reach of small children or pets.
• Before lighting any fire, remove all decorations from the fireplace area and have the fireplace inspected to ensure it is fully functional and not in need of repair.

For more information about holiday fire safety, call the Injury Prevention Center of Greater Dallas at 214.590.4455 or visit its website at www.injurypreventioncenter.org.
During the holidays many of us deck our homes with festive decorations to spread holiday cheer. While jolly and bright, holiday trimmings can also pose serious fire hazards if not handled properly. Safety experts at Parkland Health & Hospital System encourage caution this winter with Christmas trees, lights, candles and other decorations which all have the potential to start a fire.
Knowing what’s best for your family this holiday season
By Angel Biasatti
Director Public and Community Relations/Methodist Mansfield Medical Center









Ketan Trivedi, MD, medical director of the ED and on the medical staff at Methodist Mansfield Medical Center, recommends calling 911 or coming into the ED for a range of potentially serious conditions.

“Seek immediate medical attention if you have difficulty breathing; have significant changes in behavior, such as being confused, delirious, or excessively sleepy; are becoming increasingly less responsive or alert; or have been in an accident,” says Dr. Trivedi. “A severe headache or vomiting, especially after a head injury; a fever of 103 degrees or higher; fracture; uncontrolled bleeding; weakness or numbness on one side; choking; ingestion of poisons or obstructive objects; seizures; severe allergic reactions; serious burns; severe puncture wounds; and animal or human bites are also conditions you should take seriously.”

The holidays can also have a negative effect on the heart. Research shows that the risk of having a heart attack goes up during the winter holidays, and heart-related deaths are highest around Christmas and New Year’s Day. According to the American College of Emergency Physicians, possible causes for this dangerous seasonal surge in heart problems include:

•     Eating too many rich or salty foods

•     Forgetting to take daily medications

•     Waiting too long to seek medical help for potential heart trouble out of concern that it may disrupt holiday plans. 

If you or a loved one thinks they are having a heart attack or stroke, act fast and always call 911.  Don’t drive to the hospital as this may endanger you or others around you and delay necessary medical care, Dr. Trivedi explains. A sudden inability to speak, weakness to the face, arms, and legs, or a severe headache may be signs of a stroke, while chest pain that may radiate to the arms, neck or jaw associated with shortness of breath, nausea, sweating or dizziness may indicate a heart attack. If you or a loved one has any of these symptoms that suggest a possibility of a stroke or a heart attack, don’t delay, call 911 immediately and seek medical help. 

“When it comes to a stroke or heart attack time is of the essence. It’s best to find out for certain if these symptoms are indicating a heart attack or stroke. That way, you’re more likely to be around to enjoy next year’s holiday season,” Dr. Trivedi urges.

EDs are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Patients are treated based on severity of injury or illness rather than their time of arrival, and the physicians, paramedics, nurses, and other support staff are specially trained to diagnose and treat a range of medical issues.

Find out more information at MethodistHealthSystem.org/MansfieldEmergency.
As a parent, you have a pretty good idea when a family member has an injury or illness that’s more than you can tackle with an over-the-counter medication and a hug. While the holiday season is a festive time, it’s no fun if you or someone you love isn’t feeling well or whose illness gets progressively worse, plus accidents and emergencies always seem to happen when you least expect them.  That’s when the hospital emergency department (ED) can be the best place to care for a medical emergency. But how do you know if your family’s illness or accident warrants the services of an ED?
Methodist Charlton, Methodist Dallas Presented Platinum Awards for Heart Attack Care at National AHA Meeting





They are two of only 197 hospitals nationwide to receive the American College of Cardiology (ACC) Foundation’s NCDR ACTION Registry®–GWTG™ Platinum Performance Achievement Award, which recognizes a hospital’s commitment and success in implementing a higher standard of care for heart attack patients. 

The award signifies that Methodist Charlton and Methodist Dallas have reached an aggressive goal of treating these patients at standard levels of care as outlined by the ACC and AHA clinical guidelines and recommendations. 

To receive the award, Methodist Charlton and Methodist Dallas consistently followed the treatment guidelines in the ACTION Registry–GWTG Premier for 8 consecutive quarters and met a performance standard of 90% for specific performance measures. Following these treatment guidelines improves adherence to  ACC/AHA Clinical Guideline recommendations, monitors drug safety and the overall quality of care provided to ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) and non- ST- elevation myocardial infarction patients (NSTEMI).

“Methodist Health System’s commitment to saving the lives of heart attack patients in our community and providing the highest quality of cardiovascular care has clearly been demonstrated by Methodist Dallas and Methodist Charlton joining together to receive this award,” says Amy Velasquez, NCDR registry coordinator for Methodist Charlton and Methodist Dallas. 

The AHA Scientific Sessions is the leading cardiovascular meeting for basic, translational, clinical and population science, in the United States, with more 18,000 cardiovascular experts from more than 105 countries attending the meeting.

About Methodist Health System: Guided by the founding principles of life, learning, and compassion, Methodist Health System (Methodist) provides quality, integrated care to improve and save the lives of individuals and families throughout North Texas.   Methodist Dallas Medical Center, Methodist Charlton Medical Center, Methodist Mansfield Medical Center, Methodist Richardson Medical Center, Methodist Midlothian Health Center, and Methodist Family Health Centers are part of the nonprofit Methodist Health System, which is affiliated by covenant with the North Texas Conference of The United Methodist Church. Additional information is available at www.methodisthealthsystem.org. Connect with them through Facebook, YouTube and Twitter at www.methodisthealthsystem.org/socialmedia.
Methodist Charlton and Methodist Dallas were presented Platinum Performance Achievement awards for excellence in heart attack care at the recent American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions national meeting in Dallas.
Cook Children’s to build new South Tower on main campus
Modernization project includes new Urgent Care Center and Utility Plant





However, the Cook Children’s Emergency Department was built to serve about half of the 120,000 patients seen each year. At the time of its completion nearly 20 years ago no one could have foreseen the rapid pediatric population growth that would take place in this community.

A comprehensive review of the medical center showed the need for a modernization project for the ED, Surgery Services, the new Heart Center, a Laboratory and a Sterile Processing Center. This venture is in response to the emerging needs of a growing population and will culminate with a new South Tower, built on Cook Children’s main campus in Fort Worth.

All areas will be updated to ensure a new contemporary look and feel, with a more efficient design and room for the latest in technology.

This is especially important in Surgery Services. The pediatric surgeons at Cook Children’s performed more than 27,000 procedures last year on children of all ages. The surgeons are specially trained to care for pediatric patients, but need specific technology to operate on the little patients at the medical center. The new modernization project will make this possible.

In addition to the new South Tower, a new, permanent Urgent Care Center will be built on the corner of Rosedale Avenue and Sixth Avenue to further alleviate the wait times in the ED. A new South Utility Plant will also be built on campus to support the South Tower and future growth. The Prayer Garden and the Walk of Honor will be relocated to a new location.

The planning of the modernization project also has room for long-term inpatient growth, with levels five and six of the new building being shelled for future medical/surgical bed needs.

“Our aim has always been to provide the safest and most modern environment possible for our patients and their families. We feel we owe them our best in keeping with our Promise to them – ‘to improve the health of every child in our region,’ ” said Rick Merrill, president and CEO of Cook Children’s. “Technology progresses quickly so we must continue to not only evolve with the times, but try to stay ahead of them. Winston Churchill once said, ‘We shape our buildings, and afterwards our buildings shape us.’ As a leader in pediatric healthcare, we believe the new South Tower will shape and position us well for our future.”

But this modernization project can’t be fixed by knocking down walls or adding piecemeal additions.

“Simply renovating the old spaces wouldn’t give us what we so desperately need to service our patients and their families,” said Nancy Cychol, president of Cook Children’s Medical Center. “The interstitial space between floors is too small and we can’t move the latest technology we need into those areas such as Surgery and the Emergency Department. We also need a better layout and flow in the ED so we can treat patients more efficiently. This will give us the ability to see patients faster and safer. The addition of a new, permanent Urgent Care Center will help to enhance the great care our kids and their families have already been experiencing.”

Key specialties within Cook Children’s such as Neurosciences, Endocrinology, Hematology and Oncology, Orthopedics and the Heart Center have helped Cook Children’s gain national and international recognition as a health care leader. Cook Children’s has always managed to attract the best and brightest minds in health care. This new modernization effort will help continue that tradition.

This project for the new South Tower, the Utility Plant and renovation of the existing facility will cost $349 million. The South Tower will include 314,000 square feet.

“You invest in the care of children when you have the ability to invest,” Merrill said. “More than that, it’s important that we continue to reinvest looking toward the future because that’s when the community reaps the most benefits.”

The South Tower

Construction on the new facility begins in December 2013 and will be completed in the next three and a half years, with an additional year of internal renovation. Highlights of the new tower include the following:

Emergency Department

The new Emergency Department will be designed to lessen the wait times for patients. It will have more, and larger, exam rooms and a superior layout designed to better accommodate the existing volume of patients visiting the Emergency Department.

Many patients visit the Emergency Department to receive care they could get at an urgent care facility or at a primary care location. To decrease these visits and further reduce wait times in the Emergency Department, the new, larger urgent care facility will be built in close proximity to the new ED.

The new Emergency Department will offer:

76 exam rooms (6 that can be utilized for resuscitation/trauma).
10 intake rooms
2 X-ray rooms
A new CT room

Surgery Services

The new operating rooms will make room for the latest advances in technology. The new layout will allow for more efficient delivery of services and ceiling space to accommodate advanced technology. The new Surgery Suite will be on the second level of the South Tower and will house:

12 general operating rooms – eight general rooms will be available on opening day, with four shelled. Total general OR capacity will be 12.
Two neurosurgery operating rooms
Two orthopedic operating rooms
Space for a new iMRI, a special operating room developed for brain surgery
24 station post anesthesia care unit
32 prep/recovery stations
 
The Heart Center

The new Heart Center will be the home for all cardiology services to be located on the same floor, including the catheterization labs (two labs are planned), operating rooms, cardiac intensive care unit and a cardiac step-down area. It will be located on level three of the upcoming South Tower. The cardiac step down will be located on the third floor of the main building.

A cardiologist who specializes in treating adults will be brought on to exclusively work in the new Adult Congenital Heart Disease Program. The new physician will see patients who have been diagnosed with a congenital heart defect and who should transition out of pediatric cardiology, but need the advances in diagnostics, imaging, surgical treatment and medications at Cook Children’s.

Laboratory and Sterile Processing Department

The new laboratory’s larger space will give staff a flexible workspace and more efficient layout, which will provide faster turnaround times for diagnostic lab testing and more work to be done in-house to support much of the Cook Children’s system. Previously, the lab testing had been performed outside of Cook Children’s.

Urgent Care Center

Cook Children’s already took steps to ease the amount of people seen in the Emergency Department by opening a temporary Urgent Care Center located at 800 7th Avenue across from the main campus. A new, permanent Urgent Care Center, located on the corner of Sixth Avenue and Rosedale, will be a part of the modernization. The new Urgent Care Center will provide a place for parents to take their children for non-emergent care, which should have an impact on the number of patients seen at the Emergency Department. The Urgent Care Center will treat patients for a number of non-emergent ailments such as ear infections, strep/sore throats and cold and flu symptoms.

South Plant

Cook Children’s will build a new South Utility Plant on the main campus that will be a 16,560 square-feet two story building. The plant will house the most energy efficient options for all equipment offered by manufacturers. And will have capacity to service future growth of the campus to the South.

Prayer Garden

The Cook Children’s Prayer Garden and Walk of Honor, currently located on the South Lawn, will be moved to a new location. A new prayer walk will be next to the Dodson Specialties Clinic and will incorporate the Walk of Honor plaques. A large green space will be added after construction of the new Urgent Care Center near 6th Avenue. Patients and families can enjoy a peaceful walk, a serene prayer or just enjoy the sun.
The Cook Children’s Emergency Department (ED) consistently ranks as one of the busiest in the nation. The children who walk through the ED doors receive the highest level of care possible as part of a Level II Trauma Center.
UT Southwestern neuroscience researchers identify gene involved in response to cocaine










The findings, reported in Science, evolved from examining the genetic differences between two substrains of the standard C57BL/6 mouse strain: a “J” strain from the Jackson Laboratory (C57BL/6J) and an “N” strain from the National Institutes of Health (C57BL/6N). Researchers compared the two strains of mice and used their differential responses to cocaine to identify the causative gene.

“We found that the ‘N’ strain has accumulated mutations over time, one of which has a very strong effect on cocaine response,” Dr. Takahashi said. “We propose that CYFIP2 – the protein produced by the Cyfip2 gene – is a key regulator of cocaine response in mammals.”

The Takahashi laboratory has identified about 100 genetic differences that affect protein sequences between the two mouse strains, meaning that there are many genetic differences whose effects are not yet known, he added.

“We identified this gene by first using a forward genetics strategy to search for differences in traits between the two mouse strains. We found a difference in cocaine response between them, with the C57BL/6N strain showing a reduced behavioral response,” Dr. Takahashi said. “We then carried out genetic mapping and whole genome sequencing, which allowed us to pinpoint the Cyfip2 gene as the causative one in a rapid and unambiguous way.”

The C57BL/6J “J” mouse is the gold-standard strain for most research involving the mouse. For example, the reference sequence for the mouse genome, as well as most behavioral and physiological experiments, are based on the “J” strain. However, the International Knockout Mouse Consortium will be shifting emphasis to the “N” strain since they have created 17,000 embryonic stem cell lines with gene mutations that originate from the “N” strain. Thus, identifying genetic differences between these two mouse strains is important, Dr. Takahashi said.

“Although mouse geneticists pay close attention to the specific strains of mice that they use, it has not been generally appreciated that sublines of the same strain of mouse might differ so profoundly. Thus, a ‘C57BL/6’ mouse might appear to be the same, but in fact there are many, many sublines of this laboratory mouse, and it is important to know which exact one you are using. Since the knockout mouse project has produced so many mutations (17,000) derived from the ‘N’ strain, it will be even more important to keep in mind that not all C57BL/6 mice are the same.”

The study was supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, by the National Institutes of Health and by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Other UT Southwestern authors include Dr. Vivek Kumar, Instructor; Kyungin Kim, Research Associate; Chryshanthi Joseph, Research Associate; Dr. Saïd Kourrich, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry; and Dr. Hung Chung Huang, Computational Biologist II. Other researchers included Seung-Hee Yoo, former instructor of neuroscience at UT Southwestern and now an assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at UT Health Science Center, Houston; Martha Vitaterna from Northwestern University; Gary Churchill from The Jackson Laboratory; Fernando Pardo-Manuel de Villena from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and Antonello Bonci from the Intramural Research Program of the National Institute of Drug Abuse / National Institutes of Health.

About UT Southwestern Medical Center: UT Southwestern, one of the premier academic medical centers in the nation, integrates pioneering biomedical research with exceptional clinical care and education. The institution’s faculty includes many distinguished members, including five who have been awarded Nobel Prizes since 1985. Numbering more than 2,700, the faculty is responsible for groundbreaking medical advances and is committed to translating science-driven research quickly to new clinical treatments. UT Southwestern physicians provide medical care in 40 specialties to nearly 91,000 hospitalized patients and oversee more than 2 million outpatient visits a year.
UT Southwestern neuroscience researchers have identified a gene that controls the response to cocaine by comparing closely related strains of mice often used to study addiction and behavior patterns.

The researchers suspect that the newly identified gene, Cyfip2, determines how mammals respond to cocaine, although it is too soon to tell what the indications are for humans or for addiction, said Dr. Joseph Takahashi, chair of neuroscience and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at UT Southwestern and the senior author of the study.
Hospital Program Teaches Employees How To Build Community Trust and Relationships Through Volunteering

                                                                  


Leadership Charlton, the brainchild of hospital president Jonathan S. Davis, FACHE, brings in top business leaders to share their insight with employees. CitySquare President & CEO Larry James; Michelle Thomas, VP Philanthropy Chase Bank; Tracy Merzi, publisher, Dallas Business Journal; and Jonathan Macaranas, director philanthropy, JC Penney, are just a few of the high profile speakers participating in the series. Together with employees, they discuss how volunteering positively impacts the culture of an organization, and as Merzi says, “how much we receive when we help those who cannot help themselves.”

Davis, who opened the series by sharing what it means to him personally to be an ambassador for Methodist Charlton through volunteering, says, “The more opportunities we create and identify to introduce ourselves and our organization and services to the community, the greater opportunity we have to create personal connections that form a bond of trust with our community members. When the community trusts us, they will give us personal feedback about their experience allowing us the opportunity to improve and add services to better serve the community’s needs. They become our advocates in the community. Even more important, those who trust us will come to us for their personal care and/or that of their loved ones.”

Other topics discussed in Leadership Charlton include Understanding and Engaging Your Community, Political Etiquette in the Community; Making the Best of Relationships with Elected Officials; Community Etiquette – Table talk, Dining and Dress Codes; and Community Collaborations and Partnerships. The final session was a roundtable discussion with a presentation of certificates to employees who participated.

The program has been so well-received, Methodist Health System plans to expand the innovative program system-wide in 2014.

About Methodist Health System: Guided by the founding principles of life, learning, and compassion, Methodist Health System (Methodist) provides quality, integrated care to improve and save the lives of individuals and families throughout North Texas.   Methodist Dallas Medical Center, Methodist Charlton Medical Center, Methodist Mansfield Medical Center, Methodist Richardson Medical Center, Methodist Midlothian Health Center, and Methodist Family Health Centers are part of the nonprofit Methodist Health System, which is affiliated by covenant with the North Texas Conference of The United Methodist Church. Additional information is available at www.methodisthealthsystem.org. Connect with them through Facebook, YouTube and Twitter at www.methodisthealthsystem.org/socialmedia.
Through a series of six 60-minute workshops, employees at Methodist Charlton Medical Center are learning the principles, passion, and impact of volunteering in the communities in which we live and serve. 
T-System Promotes Key Executives Mark Horner and Steve Armond




Horner, formerly the vice president of client services, will now serve as senior vice president and general manager of T-System’s RevCycle+™. He will lead the growth and operational success of the company’s revenue cycle solutions, including the physician billing operations based in Cerritos, Calif. and Williamsburg, Va., and the facility coding operations based in Kansas City, Mo. Prior to joining T-System in 2010, Horner held senior operations roles at Cerner Corporation and Sears Methodist Retirement System.

Armond, T-System’s chief financial officer, has taken on an expanded role leading the company’s documentation solutions including T-System’s EV™, T Sheets® and PerformNext™. Armond was most recently named the 2013 private technology company CFO of the Year by the Dallas Business Journal.

“T-System is fortunate to have such extraordinary business and technology talent to draw from,” said Sunny Sanyal, T-System’s chief executive officer. “Steve and Mark have more than 50 years of experience between them to lead the organization through this period of remarkable development.”

For the last three years, the company has delivered record-breaking growth. In 2012, it introduced its newest technology-enabled services offering for emergency physician revenue cycle management and ED facility coding. T-System was ranked 61 in Healthcare Informatics list of top healthcare IT vendors with $100 million in revenue in 2013.

About T-System: T-System Inc. advances the practice of emergency medicine with solutions proven to solve clinical, financial, operational and regulatory challenges for hospitals and urgent care clinics. About 40 percent of the nation’s EDs use T-System solutions to provide an unmatched patient experience. Through gold-standard documentation, revenue cycle management and performance-enhancing solutions, T-System optimizes care delivery from the front door through discharge and beyond. Today, more than 1,900 facilities across all 50 states rely on T-System solutions. For more information, visit www.tsystem.com. Follow @TSystem on Twitter and LinkedIn, or become a T-System fan on Facebook.
T-System Inc. today announced the promotion of executives Mark Horner and Steve Armond to lead new solution lines and further position the organization for extensive growth.