Twenty-seven UTMB faculty, staff and students recently received UTMB President’s Cabinet awards for projects that promote outreach, education and improved patient care in the community. This year’s awards program doubled as an anniversary celebration, as 2018 marks the 25th year of the distinctive organization.
Since its founding, the President’s Cabinet has provided more than $6 million in seed grants to more than 150 developing UTMB programs in Galveston County and the surrounding region. For information on the President’s Cabinet, visit https://development.utmb.edu/cabinet-intro.
UTMB League City Campus Patient Navigation and Health Resource Center
Sylvia Campbell • Savannah Parks • Lauren Michelle Thierry
Patient Navigation and Support
Studies show that low-income and elderly patients with complex life-altering health diagnoses often have trouble accessing adequate health care. Some may lack transportation, are unfamiliar with the hospital system, lack insurance or are unable to afford medication. Those barriers ultimately may lead to a poor quality of life and unfavorable health outcomes. In an effort to improve hospital access, the UTMB League City Campus Patient Navigation and Health Resource Center will provide patient education, dedicated navigation
team support, community outreach, enhanced communication and increased access to multidisciplinary care.
The Care Closet
Rebecca Castro • Savannah Parks
Health Resource Center
Unexpected health crises often mean patients and their families are unprepared for hospital stays and many find themselves in need of food, clothing, personal hygiene products and laundry services. Through the creation of The Care Closet at the John Sealy Annex, patients will have access to such items and will be provided with information and referrals to community resources. Two adjoining rooms will be dedicated within the hospital for laundry services and food storage. The project will be sustained through partnerships with the Galveston County Food Bank and the Salvation Army of Galveston County.
Disaster Day—Preparing for Community Safety
Kelsie Carpenter • Ashley Kwartler • Kaitlyn McMahon • Shelley Smith Interprofessional Education
Disaster Day is a student-led exercise designed to recreate an emergency scenario, in which students and members of the community act as first responders and patients. This simulation aims to prepare health care students for catastrophic events, allows them to practice skills they are learning in class and fosters interprofessional teamwork. This program, in conjunction with the Galveston County Community Emergency Response Team, teaches students to successfully manage disasters while preparing them to act as a community resource. President’s Cabinet funds will be used to purchase simulation and casting/molding supplies and related equipment for a two-year period.
UTMB Stroke Program— Advanced Stroke Life Support Classes
Brenda Yanez • Julia Anderson • Jennifer Higgs Georgia Emily Motter • Briana Sowell
Since 2016, more than 100 nurses and emergency medical services staff have attended the Advanced Stroke Life Support (ASLS) class. UTMB is the first academic center in Texas to serve as a training site for this certification. The university has noticed an increase in the number of stroke patients who are brought to the emergency department via EMS rather than a personal vehicle. This might indicate an increased awareness that being transported by ambulance means quicker treatment for stroke patients. Due to the program’s success, President’s Cabinet funds will support training for an additional instructor and educational materials to certify an additional 200 pre-hospital and hospital providers.
Realizing UTMB’s Institutional Vision through 100 Kitchen Gardens and Door-to-Door Compost
Victor Sierpina • Anna Fields • Mercedez Hernandez Jessica Stauber • Daniel White
Food insecurity is the unreliable access to affordable and nutritious food. Rates of food insecurity in Galveston exceed national and state averages. A partnership between UTMB, UTMB Greenies Gardening Club and Seeding Galveston will work with at-risk residents to build and maintain backyard and neighborhood gardens. The program will also establish a compost pick-up program designed to generate a cost-effective alternative to conventional garden fertilizer.
The Mother and Babies Course
Souby George • Sara Nowakowski
Obstetrics and Gynecology
In an effort to provide mental health treatment for new mothers who may be experiencing perinatal depression, the Mother and Babies Course will launch a new clinical service within UTMB’s pediatric clinics. This course will be facilitated by psychologists, nurses and lactation consultants trained to address issues surrounding motherhood. President’s Cabinet funds will be used to purchase instructor manuals, equipment, supplies and marketing materials.
An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure: The St. Vincent’s/Luke Society Preventive Dental Health Clinic Collaboration
Anthony Nguyen • Jaspreet Sodhi • Jay Truitt • Barbara Slusher
Physician Assistant Studies
In 2014, the President’s Cabinet supported the creation of St. Vincent’s Dental Clinic for basic dental services to Galveston’s indigent, uninsured and underinsured populations. Since the program’s inception, the clinic has modestly addressed the need for end-stage dental services by treating oral infections through tooth extractions and antibiotics. This new project will expand current services by establishing a new preventive dental health clinic that will offer oral health education, dental exams and cleanings, fluoride varnish and seal applications for adults and children. The goal is to prevent new tooth/oral infections, reduce dental decay, decrease the need for antibiotics and improve overall health.
De-escalation and Response to a Violent Event
Katherine Golden Beck • Jennifer Bledsoe
Workplace violence incidents are on the rise and are the fourth-leading cause of occupational injuries in the United States. Employers and employees are ill-prepared and unable to respond swiftly in the aftermath of these events. Experts agree that proper training and access to medical response resources can lead to a reduction in fatalities. This project will work with Galveston Police Department Sgt. Destin Sims and the NEAR program to provide trainings for emergency staff on how to recognize, de-escalate and respond to aggressive behavior. Bleeding management kits will be distributed to 80 UTMB clinics and staff will receive training on how to use the kits and where each should be located within the clinics.