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January 6, 2000 • Volume 2 • Number 1

Consistency and interaction are keys to patient satisfaction

The recent focus on patient satisfaction at KU Med continues to show positive results. 
In two of the last three weeks in December, patient satisfaction surveys showed significant increases in several key areas. Even better, overall scores topped 84 for the weeks ending Dec. 17 and Dec. 31, 1999, the highest achieved since the hospital initiated weekly tracking in October 1999. These scores place KU Med between the 60th and 70th percentiles compared to other academic medical centers across the country for these two weeks. 
The survey tracks patient satisfaction in such areas as admission, accommodations, nursing care, treatment and discharge. Because many hospitals nationwide use the same survey, KU Med is able to compare its results with those of other institutions.
For the week ending Dec. 31, the survey sections on room, meals, nurses, tests and treatment, physician, personal issues and overall assessment of the hospital each received overall scores above the 50th percentile—the most survey sections to receive such high marks to date. In addition, 31 individual questions received scores in excess of the 50th percentile. The room section led the way with five out of six questions, followed by tests and treatment (five of seven), personal issues (five of seven), nurses (four of nine), overall assessment of the hospital (three of four), meals (three of five) and physician (three of five). Hospital Units 15, 42, 43, 45, 46, 51 and 56 also rated above the 50th percentile.
“These scores were statistically significant, and reflect the type of results we’re striving for,” said Vice President of Organizational Improvement Bob Page-Adams. “This is where we want to be.”
Page-Adams noted, however, that survey scores for the week ending Dec. 24 were disappointing. While it is important to celebrate our successes, he said, the lack of consistent survey results points to the need for continued efforts to improve patient satisfaction.
“We’re excited about the positive results in our latest surveys, and congratulate the people who are providing excellent care to our patients,” he said. “But that doesn’t mean we should stop what we’re doing. We know our overall performance is trending in a positive direction and our overall goal is within reach. We also know consistency is the key to patient satisfaction. All of us need to re-commit ourselves every day to improving patient interaction in all areas, and focus on resolving any problems in a timely and efficient manner.”

Preparation, campus-wide teamwork made for smooth transition to Y2K

Keith Anetsberger, left, Bill Mumford and Malcolm Cunningham 
of Hospital Information Systems were among those who monitored conditions 
over New Year’s from the Emergency Operations Center. 
In the Emergency Department, a full staff was prepared for a busy night.

The dawning of Y2K at KU Med and the University of Kansas Medical Center was pretty much “business as usual,” thanks in large part to months of planning and preparation for the date change event. As noted by hospital and University staff members who monitored conditions during the New Year’s weekend, all major systems on the KUMC campus functioned normally. To date, no major problems have been reported.
KU Med and the University of Kansas Medical Center spent more than $5 million to ensure that the transition to the year 2000 did not adversely affect patient care or business systems. Since 1997, a full-time team of managers, analysts and technicians reviewed, tested, and either upgraded or replaced all critical systems. For New Year’s weekend and the first few weeks of 2000, KU Med also beefed up staffing in patient care areas and prepared contingency staffing plans in all departments in the event of Y2K related problems.
For more information on Y2K preparation and staffing, see the Executive Forum, page 2, and Front & Center, page 5.

Executive Forum
‘Thank you’—for helping prepare KU Med for Y2K

Irene Cumming                           Jon Jackson
President and CEO                    Senior Vice President 
KU Med                                      and COO, KU Med

A job very well done! The teamwork in preparing for the potential Y2K crisis was terrific. We faced the situation with excellent planning and problem solving. Together, we achieved our goals of managing a potential crisis without jeopardizing patient care and service.
The vast amount of planning and preparation was done to be sure our patients would not be affected. Over the past 18 months, our systems were tested and reviewed. Systems and biomedical devices that would have failed or reported erroneous data were replaced. Our success was built on this testing. 
And, we were ready to deal with situations that would be beyond our control. We carefully analyzed those issues and planned what we would do. We were ready.
Each and every one here was affected by the Y2K event. Each faced potential problems and helped find solutions. Each helped get ready for the event. Every hospital department developed its own contingency plan to prepare a response for whatever crisis situation might arise. These plans, now fully developed, will become an essential part of the hospital’s ongoing emergency response and disaster plan. Your support, ideas and hard work were essential to our success.
Without a doubt, Hospital and University Information 

Systems staffs guided us through the event, tested systems and equipment and reviewed plans. They accomplished a “once-in-a-millennium” achievement:
• There were no biomedical failures or problems due to Y2K.
• SMS and all other critical applications came through Y2K without a problem.
• There are no problems with utilities or infrastructure.
• Administrators on-site called off the Y2K emergency staffing plan when it was apparent there wasn’t any threat. This greatly lessened the impact on our staff.

Congratulations on a superb job . . . and your support, hard work and help!

Physical Therapy education and the recent accreditation

Karen Miller, RN, PhD, FAAN, 
Dean KU School of Allied Health

If you have ever sought care from a physical therapist you know that these rehabilitation specialists demand hard work and commitment from their patients. Physical therapists help prevent injuries, functional limitations and disabilities. They promote fitness and health, and work to improve patients’ chances for recovery after surgery, injuries or trauma.
Last month we were extremely pleased to learn that the KU Department of Physical Therapy Education was accredited with commendations by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education.
The PT Education Department, which is one of nine programs in the School of Allied Health, offers a 24-month, full-time professional program leading to the Master of Science degree. Each graduate must pass the national board examination prior to practicing as a physical therapist. KU students receive exceptionally high pass rates for first-time board exams.
In 1997, the School of Allied Health began its expansion program in PT at Pittsburg State University. Conducted exclusively through distance education technologies, this program graduated its first eight students last May.
The commendations cited in the recent accreditation are well-deserved. Under the progressive leadership of department chair Chukuka Enwemeka, PhD, PT, the 90 PT students are supported by an impressive faculty. The department has five research laboratory facilities and has enjoyed increasing success in competing for National Institutes of Health and other external research grants. The faculty is recognized for its clinical proficiency and knowledge of competencies required in today’s evolving health care environment.
KU students have many clinical practice site options throughout the metro area, our state and nation. Despite a tight job market, our graduates remain successful in landing clinical positions. This challenging profession has some of the best teachers in the field right here at KUMC! We are all proud of PT Education’s accomplishments—Congratulations on your outstanding accreditation achievement!


Sonnino to speak Jan. 12
The American Medical Women’s Association will sponsor a lecture by Professor of Surgery Roberta Sonnino, MD, on Wednesday, Jan. 12 at noon in Rieke Auditorium. The lecture, entitled “Leadership and Medicine,” is open to the public but is of special interest to women. It will address ways in which women physicians can effectively lead in their communities and help shape the future of medicine.

New web site enhances communications

With the advent of the new millennium, KUMC has been busy updating its information technology. 
An improved version of the KUMC web site, commonly known as Pulse, is now up and running. The site has been reorganized for better search retrieval, including direct access to the online phone and e-mail directory from the home page. 
All information has been placed into groups, or “profiles”—such as General Information, Academics, Patient Care, Research and Faculty/Staff—for faster access and easier navigation.
While there are many benefits to the web site, some users may still feel unfamiliar with the changes. Jameson Watkins of the Pulse Development Unit invites anyone with questions about the site to attend a “brown bag” demonstration Friday, Jan. 7 in 1023 Orr-Major, noon to 1 p.m. He also suggests some helpful hints for navigating the new site, such as bookmarking the profile that best fits your needs. “For example, students should bookmark the Academics profile, while KUMC employees may want to bookmark the Faculty/Staff profile,” said Watkins. “They’ll find the latest news and links to commonly used resources.”
Following on the heels of the redesigned web site will be an enhanced version of GroupWise WebAccess, to be introduced Friday, Jan. 7. The new program will contain many improvements, such as allowing users to delete multiple messages in a single action or display selected items in separate windows. The URL for the updated WebAccess is Contact the Information Resources Help Desk at ext. 7995 with any questions about the new GroupWise version.

KU Med, University announce year 2000 holidays

The 1999 holiday season—and Y2K—are behind us. Now, it’s time to start planning for holidays in the year 2000. The official designated year 2000 holidays for both State of Kansas and KU Med employees are: 

Monday, Jan. 17 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
Monday, May 29 Memorial Day 
Tuesday, July 4 Independence Day
Monday, Sept. 4 Labor Day
Friday, Nov. 10 Veteran’s Day
Thursday, Nov. 23 and Friday, Nov. 24 Thanksgiving
Monday, Dec. 25 Christmas Day

All eligible employees will also receive one Discretionary Day. 

Front & Center

John (Jack) C. Weed Jr., MD, professor, Gynecology/Oncology Division, 
was recently recommended for promotion to the permanent grade of rear 
admiral upper half, U.S. Naval Reserve. The two-star rank is the highest 
a medical officer can attain while in the Naval Reserve. Dr. Weed’s official 
promotion will occur when an assignment becomes available, which is 
expected in September 2000. Dr. Weed joined the U.S. Navy in 1965 and 
has been on active duty with the Naval Reserve for 20 years.

Former hospital patient and cancer survivor 
Marilyn Gray spoke on the history, meaning and 
practices of Kwanzaa at the Dec. 29 KUMC 
Interfaith meeting. Gray volunteered to speak in 
appreciation of the care she received at KU Med.

Interim Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs Joseph Bast 
was among those who honored Soon Merz at a farewell 
reception Dec. 17. Merz left her post as director of faculty 
affairs and institutional research to become director of 
institutional research for the Massachusetts Board of 
Higher Education.

At her retirement reception Dec. 22, Pediatrics 
Administrative Assistant Jan Black, left, received 
praise from Chair of Pediatric Residents Carol 
Lindsley, MD, and many others. Black left KUMC 
Dec. 30 after 23 years of service.

Chiefs linebacker Derrick Thomas, left, and running back 
Tony Richardson of the Third and Long Foundation visited 
11-year-old Ayanna Hill of Leavenworth and other children 
in the KU Med Pediatrics Pavilion Dec. 21. The Third and 
Long Foundation is an inner-city reading and literacy 
program founded by Thomas.

Vice President of Support Services Marla Bernard, Director of Dietetics and Nutrition Pam Henry and 
Director of Nursing Resources Ruth Heaton delivered cookies, popcorn and sparkling grape juice to 
KU Med staff members on duty during New Year’s Eve. Henry also presented hospital patients with 
champagne flutes emblazoned with the Jan. 1, 2000 date and the KU Med logo.

Meanwhile, hospital and University staff monitoring conditions 
from the Emergency Operations Center had plenty to celebrate 
as Y2K passed without a hitch. 

Physicians’ Update
Recognizing physicians who have recently affiliated with KU Med and KU MedWest

Peter D. Witt, MD, associate professor, Department of Plastic Surgery, director of the Craniofacial Team and director of Pediatric Plastic Surgery. Dr. Witt completed medical school at Case Western Reserve University, a general surgery internship and residency at the University of Washington School of Medicine, and a plastic surgery residency at the University of California. He is certified by the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and holds a certificate in surgery of the hand. Dr. Witt practices at KU Med and KU MedWest specializing in all aspects of plastic and reconstructive surgery for pediatric patients including cleft lip and palate.

Thomas Lawrence, MPH, MD, FACS, chief of the Section of Plastic Surgery, Department of Surgery. 
Dr. Lawrence completed medical school at the University of Virginia and received a masters of public health from the Harvard School of Public Health. He completed a surgery internship at North Carolina Memorial Hospital, a surgery residency at the Medical College of Virginia, and a plastic surgery residency at the University of Chicago School of Medicine. He was previously on the medical school faculties and chief of plastic surgery at both the University of North Carolina and the University of Massachusetts. Dr. Lawrence practices at KU Med and KU MedWest and has special interests in general reconstructive, breast and aesthetic surgery.

Anne L. Jones, MD, Department of Internal Medicine. Dr. Jones graduated from the University of Nebraska College of Medicine. She completed an internal medicine internship and residency at the University of Kansas Medical Center. She has been in private practice since 1992 specializing in general internal medicine with patients 15 years and older. Dr. Jones is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and practices at KU MedWest.

Stephanie Duensing, MD, Department of Internal Medicine. 
Dr. Duensing completed medical school at the University of Florida College of Medicine. She completed an internal medicine internship and residency at the University of Kansas Medical Center. 
Dr. Duensing specializes in general internal medicine with adults. She is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and practices at KU MedWest. 

Yvonne M. Hallman, MD, clinical assistant professor, Department 
of Internal Medicine and Pediatrics. 
Dr. Hallman completed medical school at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. She completed an internal medicine internship at Virginia Mason Hospital, Seattle. At the University of Kansas Medical Center, she completed an internal medicine residency and an allergy and immunology fellowship. Dr. Hallman practices at KU Med and KU MedWest specializing in adult and pediatric allergy.

Insurance cards issued
New health insurance plans for KU Med (hospital) employees became effective Dec. 26, 1999. Insurance cards for medical and prescription drug coverage are in the process of being mailed to employees’ homes and should arrive in the next few weeks. (Note: Those enrolled in Delta Dental will receive cards. United Dental and Vision Service Plan (VSP) do not issue identification cards.) Employees are covered under their chosen plan, even if cards have not yet arrived. If you need services before insurance cards arrive or have any questions, contact Cindy Ayers, Human Resources, ext. 4416.

Gala raises $110,000
The University of Kansas Medical Center’s first Gala on Oct. 30 raised $110,000 to support the medical center’s research mission. The funds will go to the Research Institute, which will administer and manage KUMC faculty research awards following a rigorous peer-review process. Internally funded research projects often lead to larger research programs funded by such groups as the National Institutes of Health. Faculty research also contributes significant scientific information to the public domain and has resulted in many inventions and patented technologies. Major sponsors for the Gala were Biostratum, Inc.; Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Kansas City; Children’s Mercy Hospital; Hallmark Cards, Inc.; Hoechst Marion Roussel Foundation; Kansas Health Foundation; Kauffman Foundation Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership; KU Hospital Authority, and the University of Health Sciences.

‘Medical Minute’ update

Bill Barkman, MD, associate professor of pulmonary and critical care medicine and chief of staff, can be heard each Thursday at 6:20 a.m. on AM-980 KMBZ’s “Medical Minute” segment. Approximately 12,000 listeners tune in every week to hear Dr. Barkman address a variety of health issues. Upcoming topics for January include weight loss, smoking and the “winter blues.”

Call for volunteers
Volunteers are needed for the Special Olympics Kansas 2000 Winter Games, 
Jan. 27-29 at Snow Creek Ski Resort, Weston, Mo. Several different volunteer positions are available for this event and others throughout the year. For more information, contact Shelley Bratton, 
ext. 1252.

Specialty care lectures
The American Medical Student Association will present a week-long lunch and lecture series, Jan. 10-14, from noon to 
1 p.m. in Wahl Hall East. Each lecture is designed to educate medical students about a different area of specialty care, and will include information on a typical work day and how students can be competitive applicants for residency. The schedule of presenters and topics is: Michael Moncure, MD, Surgery (Monday, Jan. 10); Keith Warren, MD, Ophthalmology (Tuesday, Jan. 11); Thelda Kestenbaum, MD, Dermatology (Wednesday, Jan. 12); Tomas Griebling, MD, Urology (Thursday, Jan. 13), and Leone Mattioli, MD, Cardiology (Friday, Jan. 14).

Epilepsy grant
The Paul J. Patton Trust at the Kansas City Bank of America recently granted $50,000 to the Alliance for Epilepsy Research to fund research by Ivan Osorio, MD, associate professor of neurology and director of the KUMC Comprehensive Epilepsy Center. Dr. Osorio, who is medical director on the Alliance’s board of directors, is studying seizure prediction and developing an effective, affordable automated seizure treatment.

Kenmore washer & electric dryer, great cond., must be able to transport, $150. Call Janice Loudon, 913-341-3833.
Maytag portable dishwasher, new, very seldom used, hardwood top, $200, free delivery. Call 913-648-5938.
Futon frame, queen-size w/2 extra mattresses, $100, free delivery. Call 913-648-5938. 
Apple lc III computer, 32MB RAM, external modem, 4X external CD drive, HP Scanjet II CX color scanner, many software applications, $350 OBO. Call Chris, 913-432-7079.
Clarion car stereo speakers, 1 ½ yrs. old, 1 pair 6 x 9 inch coaxial and 1 pair 4 x 6 inch oval. Call Kari, 913-677-9903.

1994 Mazda MX-3, 4-cyl., automatic, green w/black interior, 91K mi., clean, exc. cond., $5,500 OBO. Call 913-599-1084.
1988 BMW 735i, exc. cond., 189K mi., must sell, $6,000 OBO. Call 913-390-6428.
1992 Saturn SC2, auto.,112K mi., teal w/gray leather int., alloy wheels, A/C, power windows & locks, sunroof, AM/FM cassette, $3,000. Call Kim,  913-299-5411.
1993 Toyota Corolla LE, white w/blue int., tinted windows, airbags, AM/FM cassette, A/C, power windows & locks, cruise, anti-lock brakes, auto., 79K mi., exc. cond., book value $7,500, will sell for $6,400. Call 816-795-6019.
1991 Honda Civic hatchback, AM/FM cassette, new tires & muffler, 136K mi., great cond. in and out, $1,995 OBO. Call Mr. Chen, 913-888-0333, daytime.

For Sale: 2BD, 2½ BA town home in Lenexa, 7 years old, fireplace, balcony, patio, oversized garage, full unfin. bsmt., adjacent to Shawnee Mission school district elementary school, $133,000. Call 913-894-0286.

Large white metal desk, perfect for student, free if you pick up from my Kansas City North home. Call 816-453-8278.

Health care discount discontinued Jan. 1

As a reminder, the courtesy discount on health care services offered by KU Med (hospital) and Kansas University Physicians, Inc. (KUPI) to State of Kansas employees was discontinued effective Jan. 1, 2000 because of legal and regulatory constraints. KU Med and KUPI will continue as preferred providers under some state employee health insurance plans. If you have questions, contact Rick Robards, ext. 5080. 


One of the singers was incorrectly identified in the Holiday Party story that appeared on page 1 of the Dec. 23, 1999 In The Center. The singer was Mae Byers, Internal Medicine. 


Friday, January 7:
• Pediatrics Grand Rounds, “Pain Puzzle: A Visual and Conceptual Metaphor,” 8 a.m., Lied Auditorium.
• Psychiatry Grand Rounds, “ADHA and ASPD as Independent Predictors of Male Alcoholism at Age 30,” 10:30 a.m., Clendening Amphitheater.

Monday, January 10:
• Alzheimer’s Disease Support Group, noon-1:30 p.m., Delp Cafeteria.
• Grief-Loss Support Group, 3-4 p.m., Radiation Oncology Conference Room.
• Alzheimer’s Disease Caregiver’s Workshop, 5-7:30 p.m., Delp Cafeteria.
• National Stuttering Project Support Group, 7-9 p.m., 1018 Orr-Major.

Tuesday, January 11:
• Breast Cancer Program Lectureship Series, “Reducing the Incidence of Breast Cancer in Women with High Risk,” noon, Lied Auditorium.
• KUMC Interfaith, “The Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” noon-1 p.m., Rieke Auditorium.

Wednesday, January 12:
• Ophthalmology Grand Rounds, “Complications of Glaucoma Surgery,” 4:45-6 p.m., G032 Lied.
• Hepatitis Support Group, 6:30-7:30 p.m., Prairie Room, Delp Cafeteria.

Thursday, January 13:
• KUMC Research Institute, Clinical Trials Educational Luncheon Series, “Evolving Concerns: Protection for Human Subjects,” noon-1 p.m., 4050 Wescoe.
• Breast Cancer Support Group, “Nutrition for a New Millennium,” 5-6:30 p.m., Radiation Oncology Conference Room.
• Mastocytosis Support Group, 7-9 p.m., Cottonwood Room, Delp Cafeteria.
• Interstitial Cystitis Support Group, 7-9 p.m., Family Medicine, KU MedWest.

Donald Hagen, MD - Executive Vice Chancellor KUMC
Irene Cumming - CEO and President KU Hospital
Ken Arnold - Editor

IN THE CENTER is the employee and student publication of the University of Kansas Medical Center. It is published weekly by the office of Public Relations and Marketing. The deadline for submitting news briefs is noon on the Thursday before they are to appear. Send story ideas to Ken Arnold, editor, G114 Hospital, or e-mail: <karnold> or call ext. 1298.

Ad Policy
Send or bring your ad to G114 KU Hospital, or fax to ext. 1225, or e-mail: <karnold> by noon Thursday of the week before it is to run. Ads run free of charge for employees, students and volunteers. For-sale ads are limited to three items. All ads must include the advertiser’s name and work extension (or medical student box number) for verification. Only home phone numbers–no pager numbers or KUMC extensions–will be published. No ads for commercial services or pets for sale will be accepted. Ads will not be taken by telephone. Only one phone number per ad. Ads may be held a week of space is limited.

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