Ottenbacher named to National Institutes of Health Blue Ribbon Panel
Kenneth J. Ottenbacher, professor and director of the Division of Rehabilitation Sciences in the School of Health Professions at UTMB, and Director of the Center for Rehabilitation Sciences, has been appointed to a Blue Ribbon Panel at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  The panel includes 13 senior scientists charged to examine the role and scope of research and funding for rehabilitation and disability across the 27 NIH Institutes and Centers.  The Blue Ribbon Panel will conduct reviews of programs and activities supported by the NIH and prepare a report with recommendations for future development designed to improve NIH research supporting rehabilitation, disability, and recovery from disease and injury.  The report is expected to be completed and submitted to the NIH leadership in May 2012.

SON holds Residency Week
UTMB School of Nursing held its Nursing PhD Residency Week bringing together incoming students and matriculating students to network and share their research interests. Students participated in a panel discussion provided by recent nursing PhD graduates and moderated by Pamela Watson, dean of the School of Nursing. Students had the opportunity to dialogue with faculty, peers, and groups and receive constructive feedback on their proposed research, as well as review policies and procedures relevant to the Comprehensive Qualifying Examination and admission to candidacy.
Dr. Kay Avant, a well-known speaker and researcher, and the 2011 Harris and Eliza Kempner Fund Scholar, provided the presentation, “Developing Leadership in Nursing Knowledge Development” to faculty and students. Avant is the chair and professor in the Department of Family Nursing Care and the Roger L. & Laura D. Zeller Professor at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. 

Riddles in the Sand donation
The Riddles in the Sand Galveston Club donated $22,000 to the UTMB Cancer Center - Dickinson and Galveston Infusion Therapy to aid in the care of oncology patients.The club held a Riddles in the Sand Camp inspired by Troy Allen, who fought the battle  of cancer. The camp theme “I Can” was named after their beloved singer and song writer, Jimmy Buffett. Allan’s parents Jo Ann and A.V. Jones presented the generous check along with club members Jason Honeycutt, Terri Honeycutt, Dale Gerber, Pege Wright and other members and supporters.

Health System team secures capital equipment purchases
Toward the close of the FY11 budget year, the UTMB Health System had the good fortune of receiving a special, favorably rated capital allocation from the UT System totaling nearly $15 million specifically for capital equipment purchases.
UTMB staff received the go ahead to purchase items in mid-June with the caveat that items must be purchased, delivered and invoiced by August 31. This “rush order” took a tremendous amount of coordination and collaboration on behalf of individuals from Clinical Equipment Services, Purchasing, Legal, Accounts Payable, Asset Management and Hospital Financial Management. They were successful in the endeavor and able to make a huge dent in upgrades and replacements for our physicians, staff, and patients!
Congratulations to the following individuals for making this venture a success:
·         Bill Willison – Clinical Equipment Services
·         Rhonda Greene – Clinical Equipment Services
·         Mark Garcia – Purchasing
·         Cheryl Evans – Purchasing
·         Ken Hall – Accounts Payable
·         Craig Elmore – Finance/Accounting
·         Bhavin Divecha – Asset Management

Access Center takes record number of calls
The Access Center took a record number of calls for the month of August, answering over 43,200 calls with an abandoned call rate of only 2.4 percent. The Access Center team continues to work very hard to provide the type of service that all of our UTMB patients deserve and to ensure all of their customers are Satis5ied. Great job!