HCA physician learns from NY experience by wgx71124

VIEWS: 8 PAGES: 4

									                                                                                                                                     issue 01-11
                                                                                                                                 November 2001




HCA physician learns from NY experience
     T
             he term “Ground Zero” has become all too familiar to
             Americans since September 11th, as we watched res-
             cuers combing through the debris of the World Trade
Centers in New York. But what we may not have known is that
one of those on the scene was an HCA staff member, sent to
New York by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to
provide expert assistance.
     Ken Miller, M.D., the Assistant Medical Director of HCA
Emergency Medical Services, was aboard an airplane headed
to New York hours after the September 11th disaster as part of an
Urban Search and Rescue Task Force Incident Support Team.
During his three weeks at the site, Dr. Miller was part of the effort
to support task force members combing through the debris of
what were once the world’s tallest buildings.
     Arriving in Manhattan before 12 Noon on September 12th, a
command post was established at the Convention Center and
efforts started to provide survivor recovery assistance. However,               Indescribable destruction awaited rescuers
no survivors were discovered in the wreckage after the morning                  dispatched to the site of the World Trade Centers
of September 12th and the mission of the task force changed to                  in New York following the September 11 th
caring for the rescuers and helping to ensure their safety. “The                terrorist attacks. These pictures provided by EMS
void spaces in the buildings were few and the injuries sustained                Assistant Medical Director, Dr. Ken Miller, show the extent of the
by the victims were dramatic,” Dr. Miller recalled. “Our job                    destruction, as well as a visit by President Bush to meet with those involved
changed from helping with the medical management of survi-                      in the rescue effort.
vors to what was called the toxicology of building collapse.”                      materials and chemicals that posed unique hazards to the rescu-
     Within the buildings and the World Trade Center were many                     ers. “We were dealing with asbestos, freon refrigerant, fire and the
                                                                                                        gases produced by combustion and many
                                                                                                        other dangers.” With information provided by
                                                                                                        the Environmental Protection Agency, the
                                                                                                        support team was able to assess the site for
                                                                                                        the survivability of victims and provide guid-
                                                                                                        ance for the search strategy.
                                                                                                              Much was made in the media of the de-
                                                                                                        cision to move from a rescue effort to a re-
                                                                                                        covery effort in the search for victims. Ac-
                                                                                                        cording to Dr. Miller, that transition never offi-
                                                                                                         cially took place. “Because of their training
                                                                                                         the FEMA rescuers knew that surviving such
                                                                                                         a catastrophe was not likely.”
                                                                                                               In spite of the dangers of searching
                                                                                                         through the mass of twisted steel and
                                                                                                         rubble, the rescuers were able to stay free of
                                                                                                         serious injuries. “Only one rescuer had to be
                                                                                                         taken to a hospital for a rescue related in-
                                                                                                         jury. There was also one dog handler who
                                                                                                          suffered chest pain and needed emergency
                                                                                                          medical attention.” Minor injuries were much
The Board of Supervisors honored HCA for capturing the California Association of Counties                 more common, including burns, blisters,
Challenge Award for the Animal Care Services web site. The award recognizing the most creative            muscle sprains and strains, lacerations and
county programs was one of only 12 given statewide and the only award received by Orange County           foreign bodies in the eye. “They estimated
this year. Participating in the Board presentation were (l-r): Supervisor Todd Spitzer, Third District;   that half of all of the rescuers sustained
Mike Spurgeon, Deputy Agency Director, Regulatory Health Services; Julie Poulson, HCA Director;           some type of injury,” said Dr. Miller.
Ralph Huff, HCA Information Technology; Kathy Francis, Animal Care Services; and Kerry Wilson,
                                                                                                                While the FEMA incident support team
HCA Public Information and Communications.
                                                                                                                                    . . . continued on page 2
                                                                                                                                                            1
Where has the                                    Correctional Medical introduces
year gone?                                       new scanning technology

       W                                              H
                e know that the year is fast                   CA’s Correctional Medical Services (CMS) is using a new document man-
                coming to a close when                         agement program to revolutionize the storage of medical records for county
                we’ve set our clocks back,                     jail inmates who have been released from custody. CMS staff are scanning
we’re planting bulbs, football is in full        the medical records of released inmates into the document management system, allow-
swing and we’re counting the shopping            ing the charts to be quickly re-
days left until the holidays are upon us.        trieved for future reference.
     It’s also the time of year when we                According to CMS Program
think of giving thanks and that’s just what      Manager Mike Ross, the system is
the folks at HCA Human Resources want            part of new technology being
to do. We want to thank all the supervi-         implemented to improve patient
sors and managers for taking time out of         care and services. “The process
their busy schedules to attend the Super-        of scanning released inmate
visory Forums that were presented this           medical records will permit faster,
past year. Topics presented by HCA/HR            more efficient future retrieval of
included the PIP Final Review Process            these records. Ultimately, when
and the Fundamentals of Progressive              scanning is incorporated into the
Discipline. We also presented a PIP              Enterprise Health Care Informa-
Breakfast Forum in partnership with CEO/         tion System, physicians will be
HR which highlighted the roles and re-           able to view and print released
sponsibilities of supervisors in the PIP         medical records on their personal
process.                                         workstations. Currently, request-      New scanning technology is revolutionizing the way
     These forums are for you. We want to        ing medical records may take up Correctional Medical Services provides care to its clients.
make them meaningful, educational and            to one week for retrieval from off- Shown here with the new scanning technology is Marge
fun. So, if you have any suggestions for         site long-term storage. With the       Perez, Office Supervisor B (left), and Michele Halsted,
topics that will assist you in your supervi-     new system, retrieving a medical Senior Office Supervisor (right).
sory roles or help to hone your skills,          chart will take place in a matter of seconds.”
please submit your suggestions to Pam                  The entire project was a team effort involving HCA Information Technology, CMS staff
Skow via email or by phone at 834-5001.          members and the Cerner Corporation, the contractor on HCA’s Enterprise Health Care
                                                 Information System. Important leadership in system design and coordination was pro-
NY experience                                    vided by Karen Schonberg, Senior Comprehensive Care Registered Nurse, with Carl
continued from page 1                            Funke from HCA Information Technology serving as the implementation project manager.
did not have the chance to use its skills              The CMS document management system will serve inmates released from 5 facilities
and training for the benefit of survivors, Dr.   throughout the County: the Women’s and Men’s Jails, the Intake Release Center, Theo
Miller said they did gain valuable experi-       Lacy, and James Musick. Approximately 60,000 charts will be scanned each year, totaling
ence. “We had the opportunity to exercise        an estimated 840,000 pages.
the system of pulling together resources
and that experience will be invaluable in
the event of another major emergency.”
During a three-week period, 20 FEMA task
force groups made up of approximately
1,500 people were called up. In fact, all
but two of the FEMA task forces in the en-
tire country were called to either New York
or Washington in the days following Sep-
tember 11th.




    What’s UP is a newsletter for employees
    of the County of Orange, CA, Health Care
    Agency.
    Editors . . . . . . Howard Sutter
                        Tricia Arcelona
                        Anne Fialcowitz
                        Your Input
    Phone . (714) 834-5109                       HCA was well represented at a recent forum on Bioterrorism Preparedness which was held in
    E-mail . HSutter@hca.co.orange.ca.us         Huntington Beach and hosted by Congressman Dana Rohrabacher. HCA Emergency Medical
    FAX . . . (714) 834-7644                     Services Program Manager Darlene Isbell addressed the gathering about efforts to increase the
    Pony . . Bldg. 38-S, 4th Floor               preparedness of the hospital and EMS communities. County Health Officer Dr. Mark Horton, Dr.
                                                 Hildy Meyers and Dr. Ken Miller also participated in the well-attended event.

2
New program has a new home

    M
               oving offices is never an easy task. But for
               several HCA programs, a new office location
               means better collaboration and effective com-
munication. Four programs serving the needs of older adults
relocated to new offices in Santa Ana on October 26.
      The new offices at 1450 E. First Street in Santa Ana bring
together the Senior Health Outreach Prevention Program
(SHOPP), Older Adult Services (OAS), Substance Abuse Re-
source Team (START) and Preventive Healthcare for the Ag-
ing (PHCA), to one central location, allowing for a better and
more effective flow of communication.
      “Most of the senior related and older adult service pro-
grams work in tandem with one another,” said Mark Odom,
OAS Service Chief. “Being in the same office certainly allows
for better communication and prevents duplication. Most im-
portantly, we are now in a prime location to better serve our
current clientele.”
      Currently, there are 40 staff members from all four pro-
grams occupying the new office space. Although some of the
staff members are dedicated to specific programs, others          Amidst all of the unpacking and arranging, staff members from SHOPP, OAS,
crossover to provide needed assistance and expertise to mul- START and PHCA slowly become situated into their new office space. (Top row, left
                                                                  to right) Mark Odom, OAS Service Chief, Lisa Warner, Dan Conditt, Bill Liu, Linda
tiple programs. While still unpacking and settling into their     DePriest, Supervising Public Health Nurse. (Bottom row, left to right) Donna Tran,
new office space, members from the SHOPP program are              Elaine Watanabe, DeeDee Kropidlowski, Nhung Nguyen, Ken Nguyen.
hard at work providing assistance to those in need of their
services. Since November 1, the SHOPP program has already                  DePriest, Supervising Public Health Nurse. “We receive referrals
handled more than 100 cases and referrals.                                 from many sources such as hospitals, family members, OAS and
      SHOPP is primarily funded through tobacco settlement rev-            PHCA nurses who believe the individual in need may benefit from
enue, providing the program with more flexibility as well as added         our assistance.”
responsibility regarding assessments and intervention. SHOPP                     SHOPP nurses and behavioral health specialists interact
provides home visitation to individuals in need of health screen-          mainly with patients who are in need of education and consulta-
ing, behavioral health assessment and evaluation, intervention             tion in areas including self-care. Once an assessment is com-
services, linkages to community providers, case management and             pleted with each patient, follow-up services are offered for a 60-
consultation and/or education.                                             day period. The follow-up period ensures patients are able to
      “We provide services to anyone who has an unmet health               meet their specified needs, and if further assistance is necessary,
care need, with priority given to frail older adults,” said Linda          SHOPP will continue to monitor and assist the individual until they
                                                                           are able to continue on their own.


HCA nurses make history

    O
             ctober 18th was a momentous day for the Health
             Care Agency, as the HCA Nurses Working Group
             held its first meeting in the Santa Ana Police Depart-
ment Community Room.
      More than 60 people attended the first session with a date
for the group’s second meeting to be announced soon. The for-
mation of the Nurses Working Group is an idea that originated
almost two years ago and is the result of the formation of a new
representation unit for Health Care Professionals. The creation
of the new unit included an agreement to establish a Nurses
Working Group, and representatives of HCA’s nurses started
meeting with Human Resources in July of this year to begin
building the foundation for the group.
      According to Lisa Bauer of HCA Human Resources, the
purpose of the Nurses Working Group is to provide a forum to
address the issues, needs and concerns of HCA’s nurses. Lead-
ership will be provided through a collaborative effort among nurse
representatives from each of HCA’s divisions, and both HCA Hu-
                                                                            HCA nurses made history in October with the first meeting of the Nurses
man Resources and the Orange County Employees Association                   Working Group. Future meetings will provide a forum for the discussion of
will provide consultation and assistance. Every nurse who is in a           issues and needs common to HCA nurses working in all of the Agency’s
nursing classification represented by the newly formed Health               services.
Care Professionals Unit is a member at large.

                                                                                                                                                   3
Patriotic project comes to 17th St.                                                                  TUPP fights
                                                                                                     workplace smoking
     A
             merican flags seem to be ev-           flags be lowered to half-staff in memory


                                                                                                          F
             erywhere today: on cars, on            of those who lost their lives on Septem-                     or many, smelling secondhand
             bridges and overpasses and             ber 11th. Following that broadcast, Susan                    smoke while working or eating
on clothing. Patriotism has likewise made           stopped by the reception desk of the 17th                    is a public nuisance. Not to
a return to HCA’s Public Health Clinic              Street facility and inquired about making        mention that secondhand smoke can
facility on 17th Street, where one staff            sure the flag was lowered to half-staff in       cause death and disease to healthy, non-
member made an interesting discovery                response to the President’s request. It          smoking individuals. As part of its ser-
                                                    was only then that she learned there was         vices, the Tobacco Use Prevention Pro-
                                                    not a flag flown at the 17th Street clinic       gram (TUPP) provides a telephone num-
                                                    site and that they had not been flying the       ber individuals may anonymously call to
                                                    flag for many years. In fact, it had been so     report violations of the California Work-
                                                    long that a large pine tree had grown up         place Law.
                                                    next to the flagpole, making it difficult to          TUPP’s smokefree workplace com-
                                                    even raise a flag.                               plaint line is (714) 541-1444 and is avail-
                                                          Following up on her discovery, Su-         able 24 hours a day for people to report
                                                    san contacted Public Health Operations           any violations. Violations can occur when
                                                    Chief Steve Thronson to request that a           smoking takes place in any enclosed
                                                    flag be restored at the 17th Street facility.    workplace such as warehouses, private
                                                    Steve, in turn, worked with then-building        offices or commercial office buildings,
                                                    manager Patti LaPorte to acquire a flag,         conference rooms and cafeterias, com-
                                                    no small feat at a time when renewed             pany vehicles, break rooms, restaurants,
                                                    patriotism made finding a flag quite a           bars, and taverns.
                                                    challenge.                                            Upon receiving the telephone calls,
                                                          This September 11th story is one with      TUPP will contact the business in viola-
                                                    a happy ending. A flag is now being              tion and send them a warning to comply
                                                    flown daily at the entrance to the 17th          with the law. Local law enforcement also
                                                    Street building, with current building           receives notice of the violation for pos-
Old Glory once again flies over HCA’s Santa         manager Manny Hernandez arranging                sible enforcement action against the
Ana Public Health Clinic, due to the efforts of a   for the pine tree to be trimmed enough to        company or business in question. In
number of staff members who rallied together        allow the flag to flutter in the breeze.         many cases, businesses will contact
following the events of September 11 th.            Planned construction work at 17th Street         TUPP to discuss the violation and com-
following the September 11th tragedy.               will include relocating the flag pole to a       pliance with the law. Violators can be
     Senior Public Health Nurse Susan               more accessible location and Susan               fined in excess of $70,000 and may also
Sullivan, the coordinator of Health Edu-            says she‘s received lots of e-mail from          be subject to Unfair Business Lawsuits
cation for Disease Control, was listening           people letting her know how good it is to        from competitors.
to a news broadcast when she heard that             see the flag flying high above the 17th               The next time you feel offended by
President Bush had requested that all               Street building once again.                      secondhand smoke while eating at your
                                                                                                     favorite restaurant, contact the complaint
                                                                                                     line and report the violation. By doing so,




                                                                                                     “”
                                                                                                     you will help keep the air safe and clean
                                                      The Behavioral Health’s Cultural
                                                      Competency Program presented the               for everyone.
                                                      “Spotlight On Excellence” Award for October
                                                      2001 to Kerry Wilson, HCA’s Web
                                                      coordinator. The award is in recognition of
                                                      Kerry’s excellent work on a dramatic video      Gratitude is not only
                                                      presentation shown at the Southern
                                                      California Refugee Conference held in
                                                      September. The video portrayed a refugee’s
                                                                                                      the greatest of all vir-
                                                      journey to a new home and some of the
                                                      common experiences refugees encounter
                                                                                                      tues, but the parent of
                                                      along the way. In addition to the award from
                                                      the Cultural Competency Program, Kerry          all others.
                                                      received a Certification of Recognition from                                      —Cicero
                                                      Board of Supervisor’s Chair Cynthia P. Coad.
                                                                                                               we’re on-line!
                                                                                                      You can check out the latest issues of the
                 december Health Observances                                                          Health Care Agency’s newsletters by using
                                                                                                      this URL:
             National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month                                        http://www.oc.ca.gov/hca/newslett.htm

                                                                                                      We will keep current issues on line for a year.
        World Aids Day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . December 1                           Let us know how you like the convenience!

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