Clinical Care posts displayed by category

UMB is Offering a Discount on the Nissan LEAF

Thanks to the efforts of Dawn M. Rhodes, MBA, chief business and finance officer and vice president, Joe Evans, assistant vice president, and several others, UMB faculty, staff, students, and alumni have the opportunity to use a significant rebate to purchase an electric vehicle (EV), the Nissan LEAF. The Nissan program will provide a $10,000 rebate (effective until Sept. 30, 2017) on the purchase of the all-electric 2017 Nissan LEAF. This rebate can be combined with a $7,500 federal EV tax credit and a $3,000 Maryland state excise tax credit (based on the LEAF’s 30 kW/h battery), which combined with the rebate could make the purchase price of the 2017 Nissan LEAF between $12,000 and $18,000 (final price depends on the options selected).

Curious about the LEAF?

The 2017 Nissan LEAF:

  • Produces zero emissions.
  • Has a 107-mile range (as measured by the Environmental Protection Agency), which can be extended to about 123 miles in ECO mode.
  • Has an above average record for maintenance per owners as reported by Consumer Reports (based on the 2011 – 2015 models).
  • Three models are offered, the S, SV, and SL, at varying manufacturer’s suggested retail prices from $31,000 to $37,000.
  • Has excellent acceleration due to the high torque of its electric motor.
  • Can recharge in three ways: “quick charge” (80 percent charge in 30 minutes), “normal charge” (using 240 volts, 100 percent charge in 6 to 8 hours), and “trickle charge” (using 120 volts, 100 percent charge in about 26 hours). Learn more about charging the LEAF on the Nissan website.

UMB currently has 16 120-volt or 240-volt EV charging stations (serving 32 cars) spread throughout our parking garages. The Baltimore region as a whole currently provides over 200 charge station locations, and as EV popularity increases the number of charging stations is expected to increase as well.

Need a reference?

Several UMB employees already have made the switch to hybrid or electric vehicles. Laura Kozak, MA, associate vice president for Communications and Public Affairs, selected a Ford C-Max hybrid a few years ago when it was time for her to purchase a new vehicle. According to Kozak, “not having to rely solely on gas as the energy source for my commute has been great! I have a 60-mile round-trip commute so the savings have been amazing.”

I (campus architect Anthony Consoli) have been driving a hybrid car since 2004. While it’s still running great at 215,000 miles, I decided to take the plunge and go to a 100 percent EV by purchasing a Nissan LEAF, taking advantage of this rare opportunity. I’ve been driving my LEAF for a week and love it. I’m happy to be supporting a future of emission-free automotive travel.

If you’re considering a new vehicle, consider the Nissan LEAF or other EV; they help make a real difference in the health of our campus, community, and planet. For more details about the Nissan Leaf discount program, download the 2017 Nissan LEAF flyer. If you have questions about the program or charging electric vehicles on campus, please email Karen Park.

Anthony Consoli, AIA, LEED AP

  
Anthony ConsoliBulletin Board, Clinical Care, People, TechnologyAugust 9, 20170 comments
Read More

July-August President’s Message

Check out the July-August issue of The President’s Message. It includes Dr. Perman’s column on the Facilities Master Plan, congratulations on UMB being named a great place to work, a look ahead to Welcome Month and UMB Night at Oriole Park, a story about dental students and faculty offering care at the Special Olympics, results of the Campus Climate Survey, which were discussed at Dr. Perman’s quarterly Q&A, stories about Project SEARCH’s graduation and security guard William Groh celebrating 53 years at UMB, and a roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements.

  
mmooreBulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, For B'more, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAJuly 28, 20170 comments
Read More
Great College to Work For

UMB Named ‘Great College to Work For’

The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) has been selected as one of “The Great Colleges to Work For” by The Chronicle of Higher Education. The results of its national survey, which were released in the magazine’s Academic Workplace supplement that came out July 21, lauded UMB in the categories of collaborative governance, compensation and benefits, and confidence in senior leadership.

The national award is based on information UMB’s Office of Human Resources submitted about the University’s policies and practices and responses from an employee survey administered by a third party.

UMB joins the University of Maryland, Baltimore County as the only institutions in the University System of Maryland recognized as a “Great College to Work For” by The Chronicle. Every accredited college or university in the United States with at least 500 students was invited to participate at no cost. About 45,000 people at 232 institutions responded with 79 colleges and universities being recognized.

“I am proud that The Chronicle shares my opinion that UMB is one of The Great Colleges and Universities to Work For,” said UMB President Jay A. Perman, MD. “On behalf of my leadership team, I am especially humbled that confidence in senior leadership was one of the three categories in which we received exceptional marks.

“We are justly proud of our collaborative governance, with groups like the Faculty Senate, Staff Senate, and University Student Government Association, and I share this award with their many members. And though our compensation is controlled by the state, we are happy that our generous benefits package also emphasizes work/life balance with flexible scheduling, programs for parents, support for elder caregivers, alternative transportation options, private lactation rooms for new moms, and much more.”

Congratulations to all who make UMB deserving of such recognition!

By Chris Zang

  
Chris Zang Clinical Care, Community Service, Contests, Education, People, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAJuly 25, 20170 comments
Read More
moving grooving feature

The Anatomy of a Community Health Fair – Lessons Learned

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on Inside SOP, the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy’s blog. It is reprinted here with permission.

In the early hours of May 31, 2017, a team of faculty and students from the Peter Lamy Center on Drug Therapy and Aging at the School of Pharmacy arrived at Patterson Park in Baltimore to take part in the “Movin’ and Groovin’ for Good Health” health fair organized by the Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks. Each member of the team had a stethoscope and sphygmomanometer (blood pressure cuff) handy, and by 10 a.m., a long line of individuals waiting to receive a blood pressure assessment and speak with trusted members of the Lamy Center team had formed under the merciless sun.

With the formation of a second line, all visitors had an opportunity to engage in deep conversations with members of the team about the many challenges associated with living with their specific illnesses and the best way to optimize their use of medications. The event did not pass without several lessons learned:

Never Forget That the Challenges of Older Adults Residing in the Community are Very Real

While music, dancing, and a jolly atmosphere saturated the surroundings, many of the older adult participants took time from their day to talk with us about their prescribed medications; recent hospitalizations and diagnoses; falls; challenges of living with hypertension, heart failure, diabetes, overactive bladder, and depression; issues with polypharmacy; and medication adherence – to name a few. They were seeking answers!

Building Strong, Meaningful Relationships with Community Partners Was Never More Fun

After having her blood pressure assessed at our table, the division chief of the Special Populations Unit for the Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks, posed for a picture and later shared these kind words, “Thank you so much for bringing your pharmacy students to our fitness event yesterday in Patterson Park. What an enthusiastic and knowledgeable group of young people! The weather cooperated and the event was very successful. The participation of [The Peter Lamy Center at the] University of Maryland School of Pharmacy always adds greatly to our senior health education and promotion efforts and is greatly appreciated. I truly find it a pleasure to work with both you [Dr. Mansour] and Dr. Brandt. On behalf of Baltimore City Recreation and Parks, the Baltimore City Health Department, and Baltimore’s older adults, thank you again.”

To Have the Greatest Impact on the Health Education of the Community, Attend a Health Fair

Health fairs are a well-received intervention for community health programs, and their success can be traced back to 19th century county and state fairs. One will continue to learn many lessons about the needs of the communities and residents that they serve by attending these events – lessons that cannot be taught in a classroom or auditorium.

  
Daniel Mansour Clinical Care, Community ServiceJuly 24, 20170 comments
Read More
syringe with vial

Student and Employee Health – Summer Shots

Students who need summer shots (such as Tdap, Hepatitis B, MMR, Chickenpox vaccines, and the TB skin test), are encouraged to stop by the Health Center in the month of July, during the adjusted schedule. After July 31, the schedule will return to normal. No appointment needed – walk-ins only. Please bring your insurance identification card.

July Shots Schedule

Monday – 9 to 10 a.m.
Tuesday – Noon to 1 p.m.
Wednesday – Noon to 1 p.m.
Thursday – 3 to 4 p.m. (no TB skin tests on this day)
Friday – Noon to 1 p.m.

For questions, call 667-214-1883. For more information about available services, visit the Student Health Office.

  
Dana Rampolla Bulletin Board, Clinical Care, Community Service, People, University Administration, University LifeJuly 18, 20170 comments
Read More

Integrative Medicine Offers Non-Pharmacologic Solutions for Pain Management

The Joint Commission, the largest US accrediting body for health care facilities, recently announced revised hospital performance measures for pain management, which includes the provision of non-pharmacologic pain treatment modalities.  This is important as more than half of all US adults reported to the National Institutes of Health that they had suffered from pain within the past 3 months; and 11% reported they suffered from pain every day in the past 3 months!  Some of the evidence-based non-pharmacologic strategies most commonly prescribed are integrative therapies, such as acupuncture, massage therapy, mediation, yoga, breathing and others.  The Joint Commission also recommends that healthcare providers prescribe their treatments using a patient-centered approach, a concept that is key in integrative medicine.

Additionally, one-third of US adults already use complementary and integrative therapies as part of their healthcare, according to a National Institutes of Health survey, and 12% of children age 4 to 17 use complementary approaches.  The most commonly used complementary approach is natural products, including dietary supplements (other than vitamins and minerals) such as fish oil, probiotics, prebiotics and melatonin.  Ten percent of US adults practice yoga, most report reduced stress and increased motivation to exercise regularly as a direct result of practicing yoga.  And studies have shown that many people find relief from or reduction in pain when they use acupuncture, yoga, tai chi, therapeutic music, mindfulness-based interventions, massage, hypnosis, chiropractic, and some herbal products like devil’s claw, white willow bark, cayenne, comfrey, Brazilian arnica, and lavender essential oil, just to name a few.

As a healthcare professional, you know the importance of effective communication with your patients or clients, especially when it comes to healthcare decisions.  Many healthcare providers wish they had more practical, evidence-based knowledge about integrative medicine.  If you feel that way too, you might be interested in the University of Maryland School of Medicine Center for Integrative Medicine’s new Applied Integrative Medicine Training for Health Care Professionals.  It will consist of four three-day in-person intensives (two in the fall and two in the spring) and online learning, designed to give health care professionals not just the fundamentals of Integrative Medicine, but hands-on experience and real-life applications that can be immediately applied to your practice.  It is evidence-based and will be taught by the Center for Integrative Medicine’s experienced team.

In addition to being a more well-rounded practitioner, you will learn self-care techniques to help fight burnout and help you cope with stress.  You will learn tools that you can teach your patients, and you will be better able to be a role model for their health as well. CME/CEUs available.

To learn more about it, visit our website or email.

Hurry – registration for the 2017/2018 session closes August 31, 2017!  Discounts are available for UMB/UMMS employees.

__________________

For more information:

Center for Integrative Medicine (CIM) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine

CIM’s Health & Wellness Blog

Commentary on The Joint Commission’s Pain Standards

NIH/NCCIH Statistics on CAM Use

NIH/NCCIH CAM for Pain

  
Rebekah Owens Clinical Care, Collaboration, Education, People, Research, University LifeJuly 16, 20170 comments
Read More

UMB Unveils Campus Climate Survey Results

UMB Unveils Campus Climate Survey Results

The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) released results of its Gallup Climate Survey during President Jay A. Perman’s quarterly Q&A on June 19 in the School of Social Work auditorium.

The recommendation that UMB undertake a climate survey — assessing students’ and employees’ views on issues of diversity and inclusion on campus — first appeared in the University’s 2011–2016 Strategic Plan. A climate survey was broached again during UMB’s “Continuing Conversation About Race,” held in the aftermath of Freddie Gray’s arrest and death in spring 2015.

The survey is meant to assess the UMB community’s perceptions of campus climate and to establish a baseline for future surveys, so that University leadership can determine whether progress is being made over time and can tailor interventions to assure improvement.

While Gallup developed an inclusiveness index for UMB’s use, the University tailored the survey to its own needs and worked with Gallup to expand the number of indices on which to gather data. Below are the campus climate indices that were measured.

  • Inclusiveness: Sample questions — My supervisor creates an environment that is trusting and open. I always trust my organization to be fair to all employees.
  • Honoring Diversity: At UMB, staff and faculty appreciate others whose race/ethnicity is different from their own. UMB provides an environment for the free and open expression of ideas, opinions, and beliefs.
  • Confidence in UMB: There is open communication throughout all levels of the organization. My organization encourages new ideas that defy conventional wisdom.
  • Input on Decision-Making: The leadership at the University level provides adequate opportunity for faculty and staff to provide input on decision-making through the shared governance process.
  • Organizational Values: I strongly believe in our organization’s values. I understand how the organization’s values impact how I do my job.
  • Safety: I feel safe on UMB’s campus. I feel safe in my work environment.

The June 19 climate survey presentation focused only on faculty and staff respondents. However, students were surveyed as well, and the results of the student survey will be shared this fall with the University Student Government Association and other student leadership groups.

In all, nearly 2,700 employees responded to the survey, 42 percent of UMB’s total employees. About half of all white, black, and Hispanic employees participated in the survey, along with 29 percent of Asian employees and 43 percent of employees who identify by two or more races. More women participated than men — 50 to 39 percent — and the greatest response rates came from employees working at UMB between 10 and 40 years.

The survey was developed on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 indicating that respondents are “extremely dissatisfied” and 5 indicating that they are “extremely satisfied.” Across all climate indicators and across all categories of employees — race/ethnicity, gender, and length of employment — virtually all responses fell between 3.0 and 4.0. (There were two outliers: Employees working at the University less than six months gave high marks to UMB’s commitment to diversity and organizational values; their average score on both indices was 4.15.)

Across all indices, there were differences in scores among the employee categories, but almost all of these differences were small. The one exception was found on the diversity index, where there was a moderate difference between genders, with men giving UMB higher scores than women.

Perman noted the relatively high scores on the organizational values index, where scores across all employee categories ranged from a low of 3.72 to a high of 4.15. “That encourages me; that’s a great place to start,” he said. “If people perceive the institution as not just sloganeering, but actually committed to its values, then that’s a good place to go forward.”

Roger J. Ward, EdD, JD, MPA, chief accountability officer and vice president of operations and planning at UMB, said that the results indicate a “pretty good baseline,” but that there’s clearly room for improvement. “In general, we performed above average,” he said, “but our goal is to get even better.”

Ward discussed next steps to do just that. He said the UMB leadership wants to understand the root causes of the differences in responses among employee categories and will use qualitative interviews and focus groups to gather more information. The University will create affinity groups — for instance, “women in leadership” or “junior faculty of color” — to allow groups of employees to connect and work together on advancing UMB’s diversity and inclusion goals. UMB will build diversity and inclusion priorities into recruitment processes and create programs to engage and develop diverse, inclusive leaders.

Added Ward: “We’ve committed to each of the deans to share their data with them so they can drill down to see how their own school performed. And that’s true for any administrative unit. We gathered the information so we can identify and expose areas perceived to be in need of improvement, and as important, learn from those areas that are perceived to be performing above the institutional averages.”

In three years, UMB will conduct a follow-up climate survey to assess progress. “This is a long-term effort,” said Perman. “That’s why it was so important to know where we are right now. Only then can we know where we want to be.”

– Nan Mulqueen

Download the full campus climate survey presentation. PPTX

  
Nan Mulqueen Clinical Care, Community Service, Education, People, Technology, University LifeJuly 5, 20170 comments
Read More
drinking-study

Is Your Drinking out of Control?

A clinical trial is being conducted on an investigational medication for the treatment of heavy drinking. This study is open to men and women ages 18 and older and of European ancestry. Participation is confidential and you will be compensated for your time and effort. Transportation can be provided.

UMB IRB HP 00061575

University of Maryland
School of Medicine
Department of Psychiatry
Clinical Neurobehavioral Center

For more information call the Clinical Neurobehavioral Center (CNC) at (667) 214-2111.

  
Olga kolesnikBulletin Board, Clinical Care, Education, People, ResearchJune 19, 20170 comments
Read More
Blue-pills

Warning From Office of Public Safety Regarding Carfentanil

Carfentanil tablet

Carfentanil tablet

The University of Maryland, Baltimore Office of Public Safety has issued the following warning to the campus community.

Please be advised that carfentanil – a powerful derivative of fentanyl, a synthetic narcotic analgesic produced from morphine – may potentially be found in Baltimore in either pill form or mixed (“cut”) with heroin. Even small amounts are generally fatal.

Skin contact with the pill could prove fatal to anyone who does not have a high tolerance to opoids.

Avoid Skin Contact

NEVER pick up pills that you find on the street or in the community. If you must pick them up, use latex gloves and standard safety precautions, and notify the UMB police and/or the Baltimore Police Department (911) immediately.

The UMB police can be reached at 771 (on-campus) or 410-706-3333 (off-campus).

Watch out for Your Pets

Carfentanil is deadly to animals, as well. It is used as a tranquilizer for large animals such as elephants. Watch out for your pets when walking outside.

Symptoms of exposure to carfentanil include:

1. Respiratory and cardiac distress
2. Weak pulse
3. Unconsciousness
4. Nausea and vomiting
5. Pinpoint pupils
6. Unusual drowsiness

If you have been exposed, or think you might have been exposed, call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room immediately.

  
Erick PechaBulletin Board, Clinical Care, Community Service, Education, For B'more, People, UMB News, University Administration, University LifeJune 8, 20170 comments
Read More
June President's Message

June President’s Message

Check out the June issue of The President’s Message. It includes Dr. Perman’s column on his State of the University Address, a story on Police Chief Tony Williams’ retirement, a look back at Commencement, a story on Matt Hourihan’s federal research budget forecast, part of the President’s Panel on Politics and Policy, a primer on why philanthropic investment in UMB is so important, a look back at year 2 of the UMB CURE Scholars Program, an invitation to Dr. Perman’s Q&A on June 19, which will include a discussion of the campus climate survey, and a roundup of student, faculty, and staff achievements.

  
Chris Zang ABAE, Bulletin Board, Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, Contests, Education, People, Research, Technology, UMB News, University Life, USGAJune 8, 20170 comments
Read More
Stroke Study

Biogen Acquires Drug Candidate Invented by Marc Simard

Biogen has completed an asset purchase of Remedy Pharmaceuticals’ Phase 3 candidate, CIRARA (intravenous glyburide). The target indication for CIRARA is large hemispheric infarction (LHI), a severe form of ischemic stroke where brain swelling (cerebral edema) often leads to a disproportionately large share of stroke-related morbidity and morality. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently granted CIRARA Orphan Drug Designation for severe cerebral edema in patients with acute ischemic stroke. The FDA has also granted CIRARA Fast Track designation.

Each year, approximately 1.7 million ischemic strokes occur across the U.S., Europe, and Japan, and approximately 15 percent of these are LHI strokes. In preclinical studies, CIRARA has been shown to block SUR1-TRPM4 channels that mediate stroke-related brain swelling. Clinical proof-of-concept studies have demonstrated the potential of CIRARA to reduce brain swelling, disability, and the risk of death in patients with LHI.

“Building on our leading position in multiple sclerosis, spinal muscular atrophy, and Alzheimer’s disease research, we see a compelling opportunity in stroke where we can leverage our core expertise in neuroscience to make a major difference in patient care. CIRARA represents a potential breakthrough stroke treatment that accelerates our efforts to build a portfolio of new therapies for neurologic diseases,” said Michael Ehlers, MD, PhD, executive vice president, research and development at Biogen. “We believe the data supporting the potential of CIRARA are compelling and that CIRARA can be a first-in-class therapy that gives physicians the ability to meaningfully improve patient outcomes in an area where effective treatments have been few and far between.”

This transaction complements Biogen’s broader efforts to build a portfolio of best-in-class treatments for acute ischemic stroke and further strengthen its leadership in neuroscience. Biogen currently is conducting a Phase 2b study to determine whether its monoclonal antibody natalizumab can help patients with acute ischemic stroke improve functional outcomes by limiting brain inflammation in the post-stoke period. If successful, natalizumab and CIRARA will provide new approaches to treating different populations of stroke patients.

Biogen plans to continue the development and commercialization of CIRARA. Under the terms of the agreement, Remedy will share in the cost of development for the target indication for CIRARA in LHI stroke. Biogen will make an upfront payment of $120 million to Remedy and may also pay additional milestone payments and royalties.

About Remedy Pharmaceuticals

Remedy Pharmaceuticals, Inc., is a privately held, clinical stage pharmaceutical company focused on developing and bringing life-saving treatments to people affected by acute central nervous system disease and injuries.

About Biogen

Through cutting-edge science and medicine, Biogen discovers, develops, and delivers worldwide innovative therapies for people living with serious neurological and neurodegenerative diseases. Founded in 1978, Biogen is a pioneer in biotechnology, and today the company has the leading portfolio of medicines to treat multiple sclerosis; has introduced the first and only approved treatment for spinal muscular atrophy; and is at the forefront of neurology research for conditions including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Biogen also manufactures and commercializes biosimilars of advanced biologics.

  
Clare BanksClinical Care, Collaboration, On the Move, Research, Technology, UMB News, University AdministrationMay 16, 20170 comments
Read More
Quality Care Network

Pharmacy Partners to Expand Pharmacy Services

The University of Maryland School of Pharmacy has contracted with the University of Maryland Quality Care Network (UMQCN) to provide pharmacy services and case management support to approximately 125,000 patients who receive care under the network. Patients from private insurance, as well as Medicaid and Medicare patients, will receive care coordination services from pharmacy faculty and staff in the network in collaboration with more than 350 primary care providers across Maryland.

“The School of Pharmacy is committed to expanding the role of pharmacists and their impact on pharmacy education, research, and patient care,” says Magaly Rodriguez de Bittner, PharmD, FAPhA, professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS) and associate dean for clinical services and practice transformation at the School. “The expertise of our faculty and staff, combined with the innovative resources and programs at the School, uniquely position us to support UMQCN in this endeavor and further advance its pharmacy and case management programs. We are excited to collaborate with UMQCN on this initiative and look forward to working alongside their team to improve health care for thousands of Maryland residents.”

Providing Quality Care to Patients

UMQCN is a provider-organized network of physicians and other health care providers in the state of Maryland. It employs an engaged primary care model, advanced medical management programs, and innovative technology platform to provide patients with high quality, efficiently coordinated, and cost-effective health care services. Through the new contract with UMQCN, faculty and staff from the School of Pharmacy will be responsible for providing a variety of services to patients in the network, including medication management, telehealth management, drug information, and patient and provider education on numerous medication-related issues.

“We are excited to have this opportunity to collaborate so closely with the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy,” says Stacy Garrett-Ray, MD, MPH, MBA, president of the UMQCN. “By leveraging the intellectual capital at the School, we are tapping into a resource that will be very beneficial for our patients.”

Expanding the Pharmacist’s Impact

Integrated into UMQCN’s comprehensive medical management model, the services provided by faculty and staff at the School will mirror those offered through the School’s Maryland P3 Program – a pharmacist-delivered comprehensive medication management program for patients with chronic diseases.

“In the Maryland P3 Program, specially trained pharmacists apply a comprehensive model of care that offers patients step-by-step guidance on medication adherence, lifestyle changes, and self-care skills,” says Rodriguez de Bittner, who also serves as the executive director of the School’s Center for Innovative Pharmacy Solutions (CIPS), a national resource center and leader in the development of innovative patient care and business solutions to health problems, which will oversee the implementation of services under the contract. “By bringing similar services to patients in UMQCN, we are ensuring that the organization remains on the forefront of patient care, delivering high quality pharmacy-related programs to its patients and significant cost savings to its payers.”

Enhancing Education of Future Pharmacists

Faculty and staff working with providers and patients in the UMQCN will also gain new insights in the field of integrated population health management, which will help inform the School’s curriculum and prepare future pharmacists for roles in the field of population health management.

“The School of Pharmacy continues to evolve its curriculum to provide future generations of pharmacists with the knowledge and skills needed to be essential contributors to the health care team,” adds Rodriguez de Bittner. “Through our collaboration with UMQCN, faculty and staff from the School will gain invaluable, firsthand experience in the emerging field of population health management. This experience will enable the School to adapt its curriculum to meet developing needs, provide students with experiential rotations in the field, and potentially develop new revenue generating programs from which faculty, staff, students, and the community alike can benefit.”

Services incorporated in UMQCN as part of this contract began in February 2017.

  
Malissa Carroll Clinical Care, Collaboration, UMB NewsMay 16, 20170 comments
Read More
Mental Health in the Community

Promoting Mental Health in the Local Community

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on Inside SOP, the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy’s blog. It is reprinted here with permission.

Students, faculty, and staff from the School of Pharmacy collaborated with the Community Engagement Center at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) to organize new workshops for the center’s ongoing “Healthy Living” series. The team created three interactive classes focused on promoting healthy minds and healthy lives. Community members across West Baltimore were invited to attend the classes and meet and participate with health professionals and guest speakers in group discussions that explored topics such as mental health, stress, and cancer.

Members of the School’s Phi Lambda Sigma Leadership Society (PLS) and College of Psychiatric and Neurologic Pharmacists (CPNP) student chapter, as well as faculty and staff from the PATIENTS Program helped organize and lead the first three classes, which were attended by dozens of community members in total. The classes took place on Thursday afternoons throughout the month of April, and focused on discovering what mental health topics were most important to community members and how we could provide individuals with the resources and skills needed to address these topics.

Dealing With Social Stigma

According to a 2015 report by the Baltimore City Health Department, 23 percent of Baltimore’s adult population does not receive adequate mental health services. This unmet need has led to some serious consequences for the community, including increased rates of homelessness, incarcerations, and unemployment. Hosting these workshops, particularly at this time, was crucial not only for us to gain experience as future health care professionals, but also to help improve the lives of people living in the city.

The workshops focused exclusively on issues associated with social stigma. Participants in the workshops unanimously agreed that social stigma is often a major barrier when an individual considers receiving mental health care. Mental health issues such as substance abuse, depression affected by fear, public perception of the issue, stereotypes, prejudices, and discrimination were thoroughly debated and discussed. The participants agreed that these factors could prevent an individual from getting a proper mental health assessment, and ultimately contribute to an overwhelming number of social and domestic issues such as crime, domestic violence, and unemployment, as individuals who are experiencing mental health issues are less likely to take care of themselves or reach out to receive care in general.

In addition, workshop activities addressed the following areas related to social stigma:

  • Identification of stigmatizing behaviors
  • Influence of stigmatizing behaviors on individuals
  • Influence of stigmatizing behaviors on the community and society
  • Importance of seeking treatment
  • Information about support groups and programs

Helping Baltimoreans Live Healthier Lives

The three mental health workshops that we hosted were a part of the ongoing “Healthy Living” series at the University’s Community Engagement Center, and were held on April 6, 13, and 20.

The first session addressed the topics of depression, grief, and post-traumatic stress disorder caused by violence. The workshop was led by Kelly Quinn, coordinator for the Community Engagement Center, and featured a presentation by Donna Audia, RN, HN-BC, reiki master, from the School of Medicine’s Center for Integrative Medicine, who discussed healing through energy and other issues related to mental and physical health.

Held April 13, the second workshop featured a fruitful panel discussion with faculty from the School of Pharmacy, including Joey Mattingly, PharmD, MBA, assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS), Katy Pincus, PharmD, BCPS, assistant professor in PPS, and Jason Noel, PharmD, BCPP, associate professor in PPS, as well as Adrienne Anderson, BSN, RN. Experts and local community members shared their experiences during a round table discussion about mental health. Issues such as smoking cessation, insomnia, stress, anxiety, asthma, access to mental health care, and crime/safety, as well as community involvement were discussed.

In the final session on April 20, Audia returned to talk about stress relief, breathing techniques, and her experiences as a health care professional. In addition, Mattingly and Emily Heil, PharmD, BCPS-AQ infectious diseases, assistant professor in PPS, were present to facilitate the discussion. Pharmacy students spoke about different local resources for mental health support available in downtown and West Baltimore.

Applying the Lessons Participants Learned

The three workshops organized to address the critical topic of mental health in West Baltimore had a lasting impact on the community. These workshops became a platform from which local community members could gather and share their personal experiences. The classes also allowed student pharmacists to bring awareness to some local resources currently available for people in the community. Faculty members and staff from the Community Engagement Center expressed their hope to bring more events hosted by student organizations from the School of Pharmacy to the community to help increase student involvement in establishing new workshops for the community in the near future.

But most importantly, these workshops were a platform from which we were able to raise awareness about the stigma associated with mental illness like never before, leading to discussions that were fruitful, impactful, and will have long-lasting outcomes.

“These three workshops were phenomenal, and had a tremendous impact on the community members, serving as a bridge to help students from the School of Pharmacy learn how to better serve the local community, especially those individuals facing mental health problems,” said Kemahn Jones, a community health intern at the Community Engagement Center. “Community members had an opportunity to meet new, like-minded individuals and learn a great deal of new information to help them moving forward.”

  
Ana Luisa Moreira Coutinho Clinical Care, Community Service, University Life, USGAMay 15, 20170 comments
Read More
IPE - foot screenings

Improving the Health of Homeless Individuals With Diabetes

On April 12, students from the School of Pharmacy participated in a unique outreach event in which we have never previously been involved – collaborating with students in the physical therapy and rehabilitation science (PT) program at the School of Medicine to provide diabetic foot screenings for homeless individuals.

Meeting a Community Need

This interprofessional partnership was prompted by feedback received from the community. In recent years, PT students have volunteered to perform diabetic foot screenings at the Weinberg Housing and Resource Center (WHRC) – the largest emergency shelter in Baltimore that provides resources for homeless individuals, many of whom have been diagnosed with diabetes. The students evaluate each patient’s medical history, vital signs, foot sensation, posture, and provide patient education.
However, one major aspect was missing from this outreach event – knowledge about the medications often prescribed to individuals with diabetes. Many patients had questions about their medications, but the PT students needed assistance providing answers. This need sparked the idea of incorporating an interprofessional approach into the event in which PT and pharmacy students would work together as a team.

Calling in the Medication Experts

Cherokee Layson-Wolf, PharmD, BCACP, FAPhA, associate professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science (PPS) and associate dean for student affairs at the School of Pharmacy, reached out to the American Pharmacists Association-Academy of Student Pharmacists (APhA-ASP) Operation Diabetes’ chair and co-chair – third-year student pharmacist Kyuhee Kim and myself, respectively – to ask if we would like to be involved. Since second-year student pharmacists had recently completed a diabetes module in class, we pulled together a group for an experience that would allow us to apply our knowledge to real-life practice.

A lot of behind-the-scenes planning took place before the event to familiarize pharmacy students with what would be expected and to prepare us for the questions that patients might ask. However, thanks to the combined efforts of faculty members Laurie Neely, PT, DPT; Linda Horn, PT, DScPT, MHS, NCS, GCS; and Layson-Wolf; student pharmacists Stephanos Gozali, Sanchari Gosh, Ghania Naeem, and Amanda Hom; and physical therapy students Nina Fisher, Kimberly Wiman, Eric Sanchez, Shannon Will, and Broderick Bass, we were able to coordinate a successful event.

Working with Patients

Upon arriving to WHRC, each pharmacy student partnered with a PT student to set up five separate screening stations, which allowed us to screen more patients and better work as a comprehensive health care team. Students’ duties were assigned to align with their unique expertise in their individual disciplines, with PT students primarily working to take patients’ medical history, complete the foot screening, and provide education, while pharmacy students took patients’ medication history and vital signs, as well as provided education about medication adherence and disease state/wellness.

Once the patient completed the evaluation, he or she was given a form that detailed his or her vital signs and the information discussed during the screening. Afterwards, all patients were provided with a healthy snack and water as a “thank you” for attending the screening.

Learning from Each Other

We screened 35 patients during the two-hour event, which was an increase over previous years. While the PT students learned a lot about the medications for individuals with diabetes, we also learned a lot about foot screening and functional mobility testing. Although student pharmacists are taught how to conduct diabetic foot screenings, the screenings provided by the PT students were more vigorous, as they asked questions about shoe size/fit and balance.

Through this interprofessional experience, we learned that a collaborative health care team is essential to delivering quality care to patients. The homeless individuals who attended felt fortunate to have experts in different disciplines educate them about their health and answer any questions they had. We thank all who have contributed to the success of this event and look forward to collaborating in the future.

  
Aylin Unal Clinical Care, Collaboration, Community Service, USGAMay 9, 20170 comments
Read More