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Slashing Red Alerts

The emergency department at Bayview Medical Center knew something had to change. It ranked No. 1 in the region for time spent on yellow alert (meaning it had exceeded its capacity). Its hours on red alert—when there were no monitored beds—numbered above 2,000. And the medical center had trouble meeting its targets for admissions. But when the ED joined forces with the Department of Medicine and Bayview hospitalists, zeroing in on obstacles to hospital capacity, the tables began to turn.

“The critical piece is that everyone rallied around this initiative—nurses, physicians, administrators, even housekeepers were involved in turning over beds more quickly,” says Bob Marshall, clinical administrator for emergency and pediatric services.

Over the past year, Bayview’s red alert hours have plunged 75 percent; hours on yellow alert have declined 23 percent. ED visits are up, as are admissions, and throughput time has decreased.

Colleges Bowl

Hopkins One

Medical school can be a stressful, and isolating, experience. By the end of second year, when students begin clinical rotations, they may only see a small number of classmates. “The next time the class is together is pretty much Match Day, in March of senior year,” says internist Rob Shochet, director of the Colleges Advisory Program. Building a better sense of community was one of the big reasons why the school created the school’s four colleges—Nathans, Sabin, Taussig and Thomas—two years ago. The colleges mix together students from all four years and provide ample opportunities for socialization.

Last month, about 180 students came together for the first “Colleges Bowl” on a hot Saturday afternoon in a Canton field for a barbecue, kickball, four-way tug-of-war and races. Medical games debuted as well, such as a competition in which senior students taught younger students the anatomy of the GI tract and a mnemonic for the 12 cranial nerves.

The best part of the day, according to pediatric otolaryngologist David Brown, chief organizer of the event: “Building unity, having fun and learning how to work as a team, which is what medicine is all about.”

Hearts Aflutter

Last year, Johns Hopkins made quite a showing at the Baltimore Heart Walk, the American Heart Association’s chief fund raiser, by leading every other local workplace in numbers of walkers and dollars raised. This year, it wants to raise $65,000 as well as increase participation. To encourage everyone to walk, Hopkins will be giving away free pedometers and long-sleeve T-shirts to walkers. You can join a team or become your own team captain today (startbaltimoremd.org) to help raise money and awareness at the Oct. 27 event. The 5K walk starts at Federal Hill Park at 8 a.m.

 

 

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