Archive for September, 2009

Seasonal Flu Vaccine is Now Available to McLeod Staff

Friday, September 4th, 2009

Once again, seasonal flu vaccines will be offered to our McLeod staff with the regular $20 incentive provided. Full-time and part-time employees are eligible for the incentive.Volunteers, PRN’s, Share-the Care, temporary employees and contract employees may also receive the flu shot, without the incentive.

Flu vaccine

Tammy Kelly, R.T. from McLeod Medical Center Dillon recieves her flu shot from Alison Dozier, RN of McLeod Occupational Health.


McLeod Employee Health will begin giving this regular Flu vaccine and tuberculin skin test on Tuesday, Sept. 1 in Dillon & Darlington and Tuesday, Sept. 8 on the Florence campus. Employee Health will be coming to a location near you to complete your annual employee health assessment, which includes the tuberculin skin test* (tst) and flu vaccinations.

Employee Health will also be available Sept. 18th from 7 pm to midnight in the Pavilion 5th floor auditorium for flu vaccines and tst’s.

We appreciate their excellent service effort to make it much more convenient for our people to receive the vaccine.

The H1N1 (Swine-like) Flu vaccines are additional vaccines and require two injections, a month apart. These will be provided to McLeod employees according to CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) recommendations for high risk populations, which include: children, persons between the ages of 18-24, pregnant females, and healthcare workers.

We expect the H1N1 vaccine to be available in late October and will notify our staff and make it available upon receipt from DHEC. The H1N1 will be offered to McLeod employees at no cost, but without the incentive. Communications and processes have been developed by McLeod teams to manage the care of patients and staff with influenza-like illness and anticipated higher volume of patients presenting with flu-like symptoms.

We have communicated precautions and signs and symptoms to Physicians, Staff, Patients presenting at entrances to our facilities,Visitors, the Public, and specialty groups including Schools, Industries, Churches, Recreational programs, Health fairs and with Law Enforcement

Letters, Blogs, McLeod News, Global Updates, Huddles, upcoming Living Well Newsletters and a Weekly McLeod Health Alert from the McLeod Department of Epidemiology have been created and distributed to aid in this communication effort.

Signage and handouts have been made available for Patient and Visitors on Flu Precautions at McLeod Facility entry points as well as the expected delivery soon of additional hand sanitizing stations with appropriate signage and supplies in Hallways, Lobbies at MRMC, Darlington and Dillon.

Our team is aware that the current situation with influenza is evolving quickly. Plans for managing patient volumes, treatment processes, procedures and staffing are a constant priority. Thank you for your cooperation and support in this healthcare effort. For more information, please contact: McLeod Department of Epidemiology, 777-6421 or Employee Health about your vaccine at ext. 5355 or you can speak to one of our nurses at 5152.

Here is more 2009 Influenza A/H1N1 Employee Information:

Why is everyone talking about the Influenza A/H1N1 (Swine Flu)?
- Influenza A/H1N1 is a new or “novel” influenza virus that is spreading quickly.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) has raised the Pandemic Alert level to 6: Widespread Human Infection.
- Humans do not have immunity to this Influenza A/H1N1 illness.
- Influenza A/H1N1 may be harder to detect with standard screening.

What do I need to do at work?           ¦lt;br /> – Watch for signs and symptoms of influenza in yourself, relatives, co-workers, and individuals in your care.
- Report to a healthcare provider and your supervisor immediately if you develop signs or symptoms of influenza.
- If you are sick, stay home.

Symptoms of 2009 Influenza A/H1N1:                                                           - Aches and pains, headache, sore throat
- Fever
- Cough/head and lung congestion
- Possibly diarrhea/nausea/vomiting

If symptoms are present:
- Isolate: Droplet and Contact Precautions: patient/resident/client needs to stay in their room or at home!
- Caregivers should use surgical masks, eye protection, gown, and gloves.
- Contact a healthcare provider immediately. If the affected individual must go into the public, they must wear a mask.
- Flu medications (Tamiflu and Relenza) are effective with this particular Influenza A/H1N1.
- Use antiviral medications with care.¦lt;br /> – If you have questions, e-mail Michelle Dore, Director of McLeod Epidemiology, or go to

What do I need to think about for myself and my family?
- It is important to THINK and use common sense.
- Do not work if you are sick, and do not force children to go to school if they are sick.
- Eat right and get enough rest. Avoid crowds if possible. Don’t touch your face.
- Wash hands with soap and water 15-30 seconds or use hand sanitizer or wipes, especially when in public.
- Avoid any person who is coughing or sneezing.
- If you start to feel sick during your shift, notify your supervisor immediately and put on a mask. You will need to be evaluated by your private physician or healthcare provider. Go home.
- Contact your supervisor if you or your family member become sick with symptoms of the flu.¦lt;br /> – Please remember that you cannot catch influenza by eating pork or pork products.

Emergency Department on Track with EmergiSoft

Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

I had an opportunity this morning to visit the Emergency Department to listen and learn more about the electronic tracking and record system.  Tony Derrick, Director of the ED, and Dr. Jeremy Robertson, who was the Emergency Medicine Physician working in the ED today, helped me to learn more about the new system which went ‘live’ on August 25th.  It was a good chance for me to listen and understand about the transition from EMStation to Emergisoft.  I heard about the stress of the change, striving to make improvements ‘prior to’ and since ‘live,’ and the success of the conversion.


ER physician, Dr. Jeremy Robertson, demonstrates how to use the new ED tracking system.

Change is difficult, especially when it impacts our every movement and daily routine.  The ‘Reason for Action’ was due to the age and discontinued support for the previous system, EMStation.  EMStation was purchased by Cerner and a decision was made by the company to discontinue and replace EMStation.  After many months of research, system demonstrations, and site visits, the Emergency Department’s team of ED Physicians, ED Nursing and IS selected Emergisoft from among several leading companies for this application.  In addition to patient tracking and results reporting, Emergisoft is an electronic documentation system.  This system is designed to increase the efficiency from the ‘front door through the physician visit and the discharge’.

The system provides the ability to electronically document and retrieve the complete patient and departmental workflow of the Emergency Department in real-time.  We expect some time delays as people learn new routines and where to ‘click and enter’ information, but with patience and training the system will benefit the workflow in the ED.


ED Director, Tony Derrick, trains ED nurse Mark Godbold on EmergiSoft.

I appreciate Tony Derrick, Dr. Peter Hyman, and the leadership of others in the ED to plan this solution and conversion.  We expect the result to provide timely and accurate information as we care for patients who need the services offered by the team in the ED.


Thank You for Your Excellence in Service

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

Service Excellence.  We have spent the summer learning together about our ten Service Excellence Standards, and how they each demonstrate our McLeod Values of Caring, Person, Quality and Integrity. Most of us have heard about Service Excellence Standards through a video that was shared at a department meeting. Some of us discussed the Standards in weekly huddles, or have seen them displayed in our departments.

What is most important, however, is that every day, more and more McLeod people are consistently demonstrating Service Excellence Standards. I see it in how we interact with our patients and customers, and how we treat one another. For that, I want to say, “thank you.”

Thank you for giving others some part of yourself, whether it’s an ear to hear their concerns, hands to help, or a shoulder to cry on.

Thank you for taking pride in your appearance, because both your smile and your attire reflect upon you and McLeod.

Thank you for taking the time to walk a patient to their destination, offer a tired family member a blanket or pillow, or hold the door open for someone struggling with a wheelchair.

Thank you for caring enough to explain to our patients what we are doing, why we are doing it, and what to expect next.

Thank you for taking personal ownership of your environment, which shows that you value and appreciate those whose jobs it is to keep our rooms and hallways clean.

Thank you for seeing your work from a different perspective… for considering the experience we provide our patients through their eyes, and not just our own.

Thank you for living our values and not saying, “That’s not my job.”

This month we will be taking an opportunity to celebrate the success of many on the team who are demonstrating each of these standards.  Although we are taking this time to Celebrate Excellence, we still have much to learn. We must relentlessly strive toward Excellence through our words and actions, so every customer feels they are welcomed with warmth and sincerity, cared-for deeply, and safe and secure here.

Let us continue to look for ways to actively demonstrate Service Excellence to our patients and to one another. When we do, something extraordinary happens. Lives are touched, even changed, by simple acts of kindness and compassion. Our patients experience us at our best. Our own job satisfaction is enhanced, and we find meaning and purpose as a member of the McLeod family.