May Online Connection
In the News
Phoenix Children's President and CEO, Chief Nurse Executive Urge Support for Proposition 100 in May 18 Special Election: On May 18, concerned citizens across Arizona will vote on Proposition 100, a temporary one-cent sales tax increase to help the state get its budget back on track. If passed, the increase will go into effect on July 1, 2010 and end May 31, 2013.
As most of you know, the Arizona budget deficit has led the Legislature to make several substantial cuts to the Medicaid program (AHCCCS) over the past few years.
Because Phoenix Children's is reimbursed through multiple Medicaid programs (GME, DSH, fee schedules, etc.), the Hospital has suffered from these cuts on multiple fronts. As a pediatric physician, you have probably been affected at some level, too. Further cuts to the Medicaid program will be painful.
It's clear Arizona is facing its worst financial crisis ever, and Bob Meyer, the president and CEO of Phoenix Children's, supports Prop 100.
"I'm convinced at this point we cannot solve our state budget crisis by cutting services, particularly on the backs of children, the indigent, and others who need help," Meyer says. "Prop 100 will help the state get its budget back on track."
Meyer is aware nobody wants to pay more taxes. But if Prop 100 fails, he says the state is facing another $1 billion in cuts, including another $200 million erased from healthcare and human services. These additional cuts will be devastating, not only to healthcare, but also to schools, higher education, and public safety, Meyer says.
Debbie Pendergast, the chief nurse executive of Phoenix Children's, says, "More cuts are not the answer – but getting more money back in our state's bank can help. Proposition 100 increases the state sales tax by 1 percent for three years. I see it as a short-term investment for long-term gain. I'm no more of a fan of tax increases than you are, but the future of our state is at stake."
Read her opinion piece that appeared in the Ahwatukee Foothills News.
Want to help? Here's what you can do:
- Ask your family and friends to join us in voting yes, and join our Parent Action Committee.
- You can also visit us on Facebook and Twitter to support our efforts to spread the "Yes on 100" message.
- Please check your polling place before you go to vote. Also be sure to bring proper ID to the polls, as it is required to get your ballot. Find your polling place.
- Sign up as a fan or follower of the Yes on 100 campaign.
The result of this special election is important to all of us and our ability to continue providing specialized services to the children of Arizona.
For more information, please visit the Yes on 100 Web site.
Join Your Colleagues for a Reception in the Red Rocks: Network with colleagues and meet Phoenix Children's physicians in the shadow of Sedona's famed Red Rocks on Saturday, June 12, 2010, from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., at a reception hosted by Phoenix Children's Hospital. The event is being held at Cucina Rustica, 7000 Highway 179 #A126, Sedona, AZ, 86351, just a short walk from the Hilton Resort and Spa. Space is limited. To RSVP, please contact Heather Walton at (602) 377-2261.
Quality and Patient Safety Tips, by Rustin Morse, MD, Medical Director of Quality: Recently, The Arizona Republic published an article evaluating hospital acquired infections (HAI) and "never events." A second article was written detailing what hospitals are doing to fight HAI.
Using data that contain diagnosis and procedure codes, The Arizona Republic developed a screen to identify possible adverse events from admissions in 2008 and 2009 at various hospitals in Arizona, including Phoenix Children's.
This methodology is similar to the methodology used by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to develop their Pediatric Quality Indicators (PDI's). Internally, Phoenix Children's has more robust methodologies in place to identify HAI's and select "never events," and benchmarks performance with 40 other leading children's hospitals through the Whole Systems Measures (WSM) initiative with Child Health Corporation of America (CHCA). That being said, Phoenix Children's does use administrative data to evaluate performance on a quarterly basis using the AHRQ-Pediatric Quality Indicators, trend results, and benchmark within CHCA.
I believe we should support efforts to educate and inform consumers using reliable and important indicators of our care. We are pleased The Arizona Republic data document our successful efforts to reduce central line associated blood stream infections. The newspaper's data indicate Phoenix Children's had 62 percent fewer infections in 2009 than in 2008. Our internal data show similar reductions. We should be proud of this result, but at the same time, continue to recognize that to each patient and their family, one infection is one too many.
We have made great strides in reducing central line associated infections and have had success at "eliminating" them for long periods of time in various units. With continued attention to detail and the processes put in place to "reduce" these infections, we need to believe and preach that "striving for zero" and eliminating these events is possible.
Get to Know Amy Terreros, CPNP, a Member of the Trauma Department's Forensics C.A.R.E Team: Amy Terreros, CPNP, is a registered nurse and certified pediatric nurse practitioner who's been with Phoenix Children's Hospital since 2006. As the only full-time clinician working for the Trauma Center's Forensics C.A.R.E Team, she has extensive education and training related to child maltreatment.
Terreros is actively involved with Child Fatality Review, Never Shake a Baby Arizona, Sudden Unexplained Infant Death Investigations Task Force, Trauma Operations Committee, and also participates in professional societies related to the field. Always looking to gain more knowledge and expertise, she is currently pursuing her doctorate in nursing practice.
Terreros provides educational lectures to the community involving safe sleep, abusive head trauma, and child abuse, and was recently published in the Journal of Pediatric Healthcare and the Journal of Trauma Nursing. Earlier this year, she was recognized by the Phoenix Business Journal as a member of the weekly publication's "Forty Under 40" Class of 2010. If you have questions about any form of child maltreatment, please call the Forensics Pediatric Program Hotline at (602) 546-5058.
Bombeck Dialysis Center Celebrates Five-year Anniversary: On Monday, April 26, the Bombeck Dialysis Center marked its five-year anniversary. The Bombecks were first introduced to the need for a full-fledged dialysis center dedicated exclusively for children when Bill Bombeck toured the original Phoenix Children's Hospital. Walking through the patient pods, he glanced into a room and saw a mother lying in bed, holding her little girl, who was on dialysis. Bombeck says he was immediately struck by the warm combination of intimacy and informality.
The Bombecks decided to donate $831,000 to underwrite a pediatric hemodialysis unit at the new state-of-the-art facility on Phoenix Children's current campus. The Center opened its doors in 2005 and provides inpatient and outpatient hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis treatment. The Center is part of the Department of Nephrology, which operates the state's only pediatric kidney transplant program, and has performed 72 transplants to date.
Phoenix Children's Fellows and Residents Shine at 2010 Academic Excellence Day Event: Phoenix Children's Hospital had an excellent outcome at this year's Academic Excellence Day event. In total, the Hospital had four poster submittals from its pediatric fellowship programs and 19 poster submittals from its pediatric residency program. Phoenix Children's had a total of six awards this year: Four awards went to pediatric fellows, and two awards went to pediatric residents. Thanks to everyone for your support of this event, and congratulations to all who participated this year.
Robin Blitz-Wetterland, MD, Earns Grant from First Things First: Under the leadership of Robin Blitz-Wetterland, MD, the Developmental-Behavioral Pediatric program of the Children's Neuroscience Institute was awarded a 14-month grant from the First Things First (FTF) Central Phoenix Regional Partnership Council beginning May 1, 2010.
The $219,896 grant was obtained in partnership with Residency Education and General Pediatrics at Phoenix Children's Hospital and provides information and training to resident and community physicians regarding early childhood development and health.
The largest educator in the central Phoenix region for pediatric residents, Phoenix Children's Hospital is in position to implement, expand, and enhance evidence-based and best-practice training programs for the Phoenix Children's Hospital/ Maricopa Medical Center Pediatric Residency Program. This FTF grant award allows the Hospital to improve training for resident and community physicians and meet the FTF goals to expand families' access to high-quality, diverse, and relevant information and resources to support the optimal development of their children.
May 22, 2010 - Down Syndrome Conference for Families
May 25, 2010 - Grand Rounds – "Appendicitis," Jae-O Bae, MD
Find out more on educational opportunities and events at Phoenix Children's.