Working Wonders - February

Feb 17, 2017, 16:15 PM by KirstiAnn Clifford

Medical assistants Sharon Johnson and Jose Gonzalez, and nurse Kelly Snider, received President Callender’s Way to Go Award for making sure Santa stopped at one family’s home this past Christmas. During a patient’s appointment at the Pediatric Urgent Care clinic in Galveston, Johnson asked a young boy what he wanted for Christmas. He told her that Santa wasn’t bringing gifts for his young sister and newborn sibling because his father had died and his family had no money. Johnson teamed up with Gonzales and Snider to “adopt” the family for Christmas. They reached out to nurse manager Julie Hill, who put out an email to UTMB urgent care clinics—and employees from Texas City, Alvin, League City and Galveston all contributed. Staff delivered three SUVs full of gifts to the family, along with a Christmas tree and ornaments. Deborah Gray, nursing supervisor, said "It was a rewarding experience for everyone to be able to give from the heart and make one family happy—and it all started with a random conversation between the staff and the patient!”
School of Medicine student Jacob Moran was accepted to the Paul Ambrose Scholars Program as part of the Association for Prevention Teaching and Research. As a 2017 Ambrose Scholar, Moran will attend a student leadership symposium in Savannah, Georgia, where he will be among 40 health professions students from across the country with similar interests in prevention and population health. Scholarships are awarded to students to conduct a community-based health education project at their institution. Moran plans on continuing to improve the healthy living programs he has worked to establish at St. Vincent’s House in Galveston.
Respiratory Care
UTMB’s School of Health Professions respiratory care program has received reaccreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care. UTMB’s program is one of five baccalaureate respiratory care programs in Texas. The program submitted a detailed self-study in 2015 and successfully completed an accreditation site visit in 2016. The Commission voted to grant a 10-year reaccreditation that will last through November 2026.
The National Institutes of Health awarded $1.9 million to Yu Shin Kim, PhD, an assistant professor in the Department of Neuroscience and Cell Biology, to gain a deeper understanding of how chronic pain develops in order to better care for patients. Kim has developed an imaging technique that allows his team to monitor the activation of more than 1,600 nerve cells at one time and four different types of receptors that register sensory information to learn how connections that relay pain information are formed and strengthened.

The first Always Awards of 2017 went to the Ortho/Trauma Unit in Jennie Sealy Hospital and the Children’s Clinic of Clear Lake. The award recognizes units who always are attentive to patients, always listen, always explain and always treat patients with the respect they deserve. David Marshall, chief nursing and patient care services officer, presented the inpatient award to Jason Ziegler, nurse manager, on behalf of the Ortho/Trauma Unit. Ann O’Connell, vice president of ambulatory operations, presented the ambulatory award to Andrea Mitchell, nurse manager, on behalf of the Children’s Clinic of Clear Lake.
Chris Fry, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition and Metabolism in UTMB’s School of Health Professions, will be honored with the 2017 New Investigator Award from the American Physiological Society Section on Environmental and Exercise Physiology at its Experimental Biology Meeting in April