Aug 25 2011

Giving back through art and compassion

One Health System employee works in memory of his son

Scott Newport, Patient and Family Centered Care Program

Scott Newport never considered himself an artist, yet his woodwork earned an honorable mention in this year’s Gifts of Art Annual Employee Art Exhibition at University Hospital. He’s been a carpenter for 33 years, but it wasn’t until his youngest son was diagnosed with a terminal illness that he began to realize the transformative and inspiring effect his work had on himself and others.

Newport began volunteering for C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital shortly after his son Evan was born in 2002, and eventually began working part-time for the hospital’s Patient and Family Centered Care Program. He spends 10 hours a week on everything from communications and outreach to mentoring families with sick children. PFCC’s aim is to help staff respect and partner with patients and families to provide safe and compassionate care.  Read the rest of this entry »

Aug 15 2011

Better View of the Brain

Neurosurgery refines the removal of pituitary tumors  

Imagine you’re a patient diagnosed with a pituitary tumor. The pituitary gland, a pea-sized organ at the base of the brain, acts like a remote control that signals other glands to secrete hormones into the body. A wide range of symptoms may have led to your diagnosis – from infertility, obesity and depression to osteoporosis, growth problems or vision problems just to name a few. 

And, though these tumors are rarely cancerous, your physician says you need surgery to remove it. 

Endocrinologist Ariel Lev Barkan, M.D., (bottom left) works with adult neurosurgeons William F. Chandler, M.D. (top) and Stephen E. Sullivan, M.D. (right) at the Pituitary and Neuroendocrine Center.

If you’re a patient at the University of Michigan Health System, standard microscopic surgery is not your only option. The Health System recently marked its 100th endoscopic endonasal surgery. Although more than 2,000 pituitary operations have been performed through the nose at the University of Michigan, the addition of endoscopic techniques has expanded the scope of this approach.   

For the past 16 years, U-M physicians have run a multidisciplinary clinic for the treatment of pituitary tumors. Neurosurgeons William Chandler, M.D., and Steve Sullivan, M.D., perform brain surgeries every week, including removal of tumors of the brain, pituitary gland and skull base. Read the rest of this entry »

Aug 11 2011

Health System Lean Coaches

Teaching teams to solve problems

Lean coach Kate Bombach checks in with Laundry Services on a recent project.

Ask Whitney Walters about her most memorable experience as a Health System lean coach, and she’ll answer without hesitation. “It was hearing about the developmentally disabled woman whose mother brought her into the Cancer Center for a standard appointment and a clinical trial. Cancer Center Team 1 (Hematology) had just found an efficient, caring way for these patients to get just one blood draw instead of two, and the young woman kept saying to the nurse, ‘Thank you, one poke. Just one poke.’”

All eight lean coaches have similar stories and agree that their jobs bring them unique satisfaction because they’re teaching teams to solve problems on their own. Read the rest of this entry »

Aug 4 2011

Complimentary Perspectives

Joining the power of clinical workflow with information technology

Looking back on his time as a medical student, Andrew Rosenberg, M.D., recalls being asked a specific question: What is the most important problem facing health care?

His response: the inability to bring the critical data needed to care for patients to those who need it.

Dr. Rosenberg believes in combining the power of IT systems with clinical knowledge and workflow.

Fast forward several years and Rosenberg’s answer is more relevant than ever. Nationwide, hospitals and health networks are working to implement electronic health records at an unprecedented pace. Among the reasons for this transformation are the patient safety and quality of care initiatives and government expectations to adopt health information technology.

“Before electronic information systems, everything was on paper. Clinicians and staff had to physically travel throughout the hospital and clinics to get the results they needed,” he says. “The hardships involved in tying together information significantly limited a clinician’s ability to make timely and knowledgeable decisions, as well as work efficiently.” Read the rest of this entry »