A Salute to Our Nurses: From Patients and Special Supplement

A small sampling of the more than 200 nurses in our Maternity Center

Our Nurses Week events continue in recognition of our nurses who do so much, so often, for so many. Our patients are also recognizing the extraordinary compassion that our nurses provide every day with comments on our Facebook Nurses Week post such as:

  • “The amazing nurses through my whole stay always made me feel comfortable and made sure I knew what was going on and what to expect next. I had several different nurses and I loved all of them.”
  • “I had excellent care by all [the] nurses… couldn’t ask for better care; everyone [was] very nice, courteous and competent.”
  • “Thank you to all the nurses on 4 East who took such good care of my husband after his accident!”

Special Nurses Week Supplement
In addition, our nurses were featured in a “Salute to Nurses” supplement in the Telegram & Gazette in which Lisa Colombo, DNP, RN, senior vice president and chief nursing officer, said, “Our nurses are amazing. They continually step up to acquire new skills to benefit our patients, or to share their education and training with fellow caregivers throughout the system. I am so proud of their work.” Download document to read examples of our nurses’ commitment to care:

  • Cardiac intensive care unit (ICU) nurses underwent comprehensive dialysis training and began training other Medical Center ICU nurses. Approximately 120 nurses in the seven adult ICUs at our Medical Center have been trained to date.
  • Nurses, surgeons, anesthesiologists and interpreters from our Medical Center travel each year to Ecuador on a humanitarian mission with Hands Across the World to treat cleft palate, deformities of the hands and feet, and burns.
  • New graduate nurses trained and served as Epic champions, teaching approximately 2,000 nurses, 500 patient care assistants and 100-unit secretaries how to use the new electronic medical record system.

It’s Caregiver Appreciation Month: Thank You and Enjoy!

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The Medical Center is pleased to celebrate our second Caregiver Appreciation Month to honor all employees. With Nurses Week and Hospital Week taking place now, there’s still lots to look forward to in the weeks ahead as we say thank you and recognize all employees and the vital role each caregiver plays in supporting the patient experience and each other.

  • Fun Fridays start tomorrow, May 11, and will be celebrated on May 18 and May 25. Enjoy free popcorn and pretzels at Medical Center cafeterias as well as a chance to win one of many great prizes including fun work, beach and picnic gift bundles, a variety of gift cards to local restaurants, UMass Memorial branded apparel. 
  • We all scream for ice cream! Ice cream treats were delivered earlier this week by Lisa Colombo, DNP, RN, senior vice president and chief nursing officer, and other leaders at all Medical Center locations during each shift in celebration of Nurses Week and Caregiver Appreciation Month. Ice cream trucks also visited Medical Center locations outside of Worcester.
  • Our annual Service Award Dinner, celebrating caregivers with 25 years or more of work history at the Medical Center, is Thursday, May 17 at Wachusett Mountain.
  • A Memorial Day recognition, Tuesday, May 29, noon to 1 pm, University Campus quad honors caregivers who have served and pay respects to those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Learn more.

Best wishes to all employees for a fun and meaningful Caregiver Appreciation Month – and sincere thanks for all you do for our patients and each other.

Ride into Wellness with the Our Spring Caregiver Bike Ride

Bike Ride 2017

Cyclists line up at a previous UMass Memorial Health Care Caregiver and Family Member Bike Ride.

Join your fellow caregivers and President and CEO Eric Dickson, MD, Saturday, May 19 in the UMass Memorial Health Care Caregiver and Family Member Bike Ride. The riders will depart from HealthAlliance-Clinton Hospital – Clinton Campus to embark on a 5-, 9-, 19-, or 31-mile ride through some of the most scenic bike trails in Massachusetts. Register online by Friday, May 18 to receive a UMass Memorial cycling jersey or shorts. Registration is also open at the event. Benefits-eligible employees: To earn wellness points, sign yourself in at the event, then visit the myHealth Matters website and log points under the “Caregiver Bike Ride” challenge.

Reminder: If you join the Central MA Heart Walk this Saturday, May 12, remember to stop by the UMass Memorial tent to claim your 250 myHealth Matters points!

Women’s Health Series: An Ovarian Cancer Survivor Story

Like many women, Mary Kay led a busy life and didn’t have time for an illness. But when she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer following an appendectomy, her world screeched to a halt. As a retired nurse, Mary Kay had dozens of questions, but after meeting Sharmilee Korets, MD, gynecologic oncologist, one answer became clear. She was certain that she wanted to receive her care from Dr. Korets at our Medical Center. Watch Mary Kay’s story in the Women’s Health Month series video below. Visit Simply Women to see more stories and take advantage of resources that aim to make access to women’s health care simple. #SimplyWomen

Dr. Harlan Comments on Low-Carb Diet with Managing Diabetes

Dr. Harlan

Can a low-carb diet aid people with type 1 diabetes? While most diabetes experts don’t recommend low-carb diets for those with type 1 diabetes, especially children, a new study suggests otherwise. David Harlan, MD, chief of the Division of Diabetes and director of the Diabetes Center of Excellence, was quoted in a recent New York Times article about a new study that appeared in the journal “Pediatrics.” Dr Harlan noted that while it wasn’t a clinical trial, the study is striking because it highlights a community of patients who have been “extraordinarily successful” at controlling their diabetes with a very low-carb diet. Dr. Harlan was also quoted in HealthDay coverage of the study.

Collaboration Highlighted at Employee Engagement Event

Members of a winning team show off their candy prizes.

An OCI team brainstorms during a trivia competition.

The Wellness and Employee Engagement Committee (WEE) of the Office of Clinical Integration (OCI) recently hosted its first on-site employee engagement event for OCI employees and their partners at Shields. During the event, attendees engaged in a variety of activities and competitions geared toward facilitating communication and collaboration with a focus on how each team serves an integral function in the department and in our health care system. Approximately 65 people participated in the event. WEE is an expansion of the former OCI Wellness Committee and includes representatives from every team. The expansion was a direct result of information shared by employees in last year’s Caregiver Survey.

May the 4th Be with Our Pediatric Patients!

Children’s Medical Center team members strike a pose with Star Wars characters during a special visit.

Members of the Star Wars 501st New England Garrison and Alderaan Base groups paid a special visit to patients at our Children’s Medical Center on Star Wars Day, May the 4th. Children and their families had a blast while being served ice cream sundaes by their favorite Star Wars characters, including Chewbacca himself, and taking the opportunity to pose for photos. Special thanks to the child life team for coordinating such a fun-filled visit! See more photos on Facebook.

Enjoy a Night at the Symphony on the University Campus

The Seven Hills Symphony Orchestra Spring Concert is tomorrow, May 11 at 7:30 pm, Blais Pavilion, Lazare Research Building, University Campus. Founded as a chamber by Joanna Chaurette, MD, PhD, in 2005 when she was a Medical School student, the group quickly became an orchestra as community members of the Medical Center and Medical School joined the ensemble. Performances will include works of Gabrieli, Griffes, Berlioz and Tchaikovsky. Admission is free; donations are appreciated. See the flyer for more information.