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Clinical Awards Recognize Care That Makes a Difference

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Clinical Awards Recognize Care That Makes a Difference

Clinical Awards Recognize Care That Makes a Difference

Psychiatrist Leslie Miller was recognized for Excellence in Service and Professionalism for Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, where she founded the Mood Disorders in Adolescents and Young Adults Program.

Date: 02/05/2016

The 19-year-old woman was at her lowest point. She had withdrawn from college and checked into the hospital with depression and anxiety so severe that it had driven her to self-injury. Her dark turn was as sudden as it was unexpected. Until the year before, she had been a happy, vivacious teen who participated in school clubs and was active in the community, she recalled in a recent article in the Johns Hopkins Bayview Health and Wellness newsletter.

Five years later, much has changed for the better for the young woman. Now 24, she graduated college with honors last spring and is applying to graduate schools.

It was a long journey and included setbacks. But she persevered with the help of psychiatrist Leslie Miller, whose long-held interest in treating adolescents and young adults with mood disorders led her to found the Mood Disorders in Adolescents and Young Adults Program (MAP) at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center.

“At the beginning, I was really stubborn” about treatment, remembers the young woman. However, she quickly grew to trust Miller. “She wants your feedback and wants to know what you’re comfortable with. It’s a dialogue. She’s one of the most compassionate people I’ve ever met.”

In recognition of such dedicated care, Miller is one of 42 outstanding clinicians and care teams recently honored with a clinical award.

The Clinical Awards Program for Physicians and Care Teams, launched in 2015, recognizes clinicians who provide exemplary patient care. Award winners were honored Dec. 15, 2015, with a ceremony at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, at which Dean/CEO Paul Rothman spoke. Open to providers who practice in Johns Hopkins Medicine facilities, Johns Hopkins-employed or not, the program recognizes multiple aspects of excellent patient care through six awards:

Awards were given to clinicians from the six hospitals plus Johns Hopkins Community Physicians.

Miller was recognized for Excellence in Service and Professionalism at Johns Hopkins Bayview. “When our patients start doing better, it’s really monumental for us. It might be someone finally uses a skill we have been working on for a while. Someone else gets a part-time job. Someone else is able to get out of bed that morning. Every advance is a different kind of victory,” she says.

Programming Patient Safety Directly into the Electronic Medical Record

Internist and Epic expert Danny Lee received the Innovations in Clinical Care Award for Johns Hopkins Community Physicians. His award recognized his work in Epic to advance patient safety. One result of his work is that users can run a report highlighting if a patient’s file is missing a laboratory test result or a radiologic image. That way, a physician’s medical assistant can ensure that everything is in place before a patient’s visit.

Johns Hopkins Community Physicians providers get results from numerous laboratories across the state, says Lee. “To track lab results or images manually is tedious and error-prone work, and it is not safe for the patient. Having Epic do this work provides a safety net,” he says.

Pediatrician Dipti Amin is another Johns Hopkins Medicine physician whose work with an electronic medical record helps deliver the safest care. The winner of the Armstrong Award for Excellence in Quality and Safety for All Children’s Hospital, Amin is the chief medical informatics officer for the hospital.

Pediatric patients suffer more adverse effects from drugs, she says, and medication dosing can be prone to error in pediatrics because of infants’ and children’s low body weights. “With the electronic medical record, we try to make medication ordering as safe as possible. We present better options to physicians to choose regarding dose.”

The electronic medical record also alerts care providers when the daily dose for a particular drug has been met.

Empowering Everyone to Improve Care

Intensivist Amirali Nader, named Physician of the Year for Suburban Hospital, focuses on creating systems that prevent error. Two years ago, he was named medical director of a new “step-down” unit at Suburban Hospital called the progressive care unit. Its patients include those who have undergone cardiac procedures and those transitioning from intensive care to the regular medical wards.

For the progressive care unit, Nader and his team created a Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program team. It includes not only physicians and nurses, but also technicians and housekeepers, as well as the patient and family. “Every individual is empowered to point out defects in the system of care,” says Nader.

Nader praises the awards program for its attention to the behind-the-scenes clinical work. “The awards have created a lot of enthusiasm among clinicians, and the awards ceremony was a great opportunity to meet colleagues from the other entities.”

Sharing Honors

Infectious disease specialist Mark Abbruzzese was recognized with the Armstrong Award for Excellence in Quality and Safety for Sibley Memorial Hospital, where he has spent more than 30 years of his career, managing infection control and pharmacy services for the last 20 of those years.

He says the award has prompted him to think of how other Sibley team members might be recognized for their critical work. “Our radiology and lab techs, housekeepers, and transporters — they’re phenomenal. They take great pride in their work and truly put patients first. We’re going to find a way to recognize them for making our hospital what it is.”

His colleague Martin Paul shares his pride in Sibley. Paul was honored with the Innovations in Clinical Care award for the hospital in recognition of his work implementing the Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) protocol for colorectal patients. ERAS speeds recovery time — patients sit up faster, resume eating sooner and require less medication for pain.

“I’m honored to receive the award and pleased to see that there’s recognition of the value the community hospitals bring to the health system. For our part, we’ve benefited from our collaboration with Hopkins; ERAS is just one example,” he says.

A Renewed Sense of Purpose

Peter Mogayzel, director of the Cystic Fibrosis Center at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, and his team were acknowledged for Clinical Collaboration and Teamwork. He says the award gives them a renewed sense of purpose as they fight a terrible disease.

“We have seen a tremendous improvement of care in cystic fibrosis. It’s gone from being a solely pediatric disease, where almost everyone died in childhood, to one where people are almost guaranteed to become adults who are quite healthy. This award reminds us that, with a proven care model and new therapies on the horizon, we can continue to see our patients enjoy better health and a longer life.”

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