- Question: Why has there been a delay in posting GEM Honorees and Winners for 2013? Are people still being entered in the drawings? (Posted 10/15/13)
- Response: There have been technical issues with the system and we are currently working to resolve them. However, staff should be assured that they are still being entered in the drawings. If you have any feedback or new ideas for GEM awards, please forward your suggestions to Ms. Phaedra Goffney, with Organizational Workforce & Development.
- Question: A co-worker recently applied for the sick pool, but was denied because her illness was not seen as a catastrophic event. So what constitutes catastrophic? What is UTMB’s sick pool policy? (Posted 10/7/13)
- Response: A sick leave pool has been established at UTMB Health to provide benefits-eligible employees with a source of additional paid leave to assist with a catastrophic illness or injury.
While a diagnosis such as cancer is considered a serious medical condition that would qualify for unpaid leave protected under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), it does not automatically ensure the employee will receive a sick leave pool award.
Withdrawals from the pool are considered on an individual basis based on medical documentation provided by a physician. This documentation is reviewed by a panel of UTMB Health professionals to determine if the illness or injury meets the criteria for a catastrophic, life-threatening condition, as defined in Texas Government Code Section 661.002 and IHOP Policy 3.5.1. An employee’s financial status has no impact on the panel’s decision to grant sick leave pool awards.
Sick leave pool is an additional benefit offered to State employees, but it is not meant to replace short- or long-term disability insurance for income protection. Sick leave pool withdrawals are intended to cover the employee’s catastrophic period only and not his or her entire recovery period.
For more information about FMLA and the institution’s sick leave pool eligibility requirements, please contact Leave Management at (409) 747-4645.
- Question: The tobacco ban effective for UTMB facilities and properties, does it apply to CMC and properties rented that CMC uses? (Posted 3/18/13)
- Response: If we (UTMB, CMC) rent a facility, the tobacco ban applies. If we are in a TDCJ facility (not a rental), we do not control the facility and therefore it is at the authority of the controlling body (usually the warden).
- Question: Is the EAC like the former CMC Human Development (HD) program? (Posted 3/6/13)
- Response: The EAC is not the same as HD. EAC is not involved in employee coaching or training. The EAC is simply a voice for employees and the EAC tries to help address policy issues and concerns by directing them to the appropriate responsible entity. Generally, employees should follow their chain of command in addressing personal issues or concerns.
- Question: Do you refer to the Employee Assistance Program (EAP)? (Posted 3/6/13)
- Response: EAC will refer to the EAP if necessary but we are not in the same department.
- Question: Is anyone trying to combine or thinking about combining the hard to fill part-time nursing positions within CMC? (Posted 3/6/13)
- Response: These are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Combining these positions often lead to short or absent staffing every other weekend. If there is enough justification to show that two positions can be combined and continue to meet patient care needs without compromising patient safety or quality, these are generally approved budget permitting.
Town Hall Meeting – October 31, 2013
Click here to see responses to submitted questions (http://www.utmb.edu/townhall/questions/3013-10-31.aspx)
Mondays in March – March 4, 2013
Donna K. Sollenberger, MA
Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer, UTMB Health System
Click here to watch the video broadcast and hear the questions below answered (http://vimeo.com/61199174)
- Why is there not continuing education funding for nurses? I would like for UTMB to find funding for work study programs again for LVNs to go back to school to get a RN degree. Can UTMB offer a student loan forgiveness program? It would help significantly in the recruiting process and UTMB/CMC would likely gain more licensed staff members.
- I have been with UTMB CMC for almost five years and have been a LVN for almost 18 years. I have not had a salary increase in the time that I have been with CMC. I don’t want to change jobs because I do like my job but it’s getting to the point where I cannot support my family with the income I have.
- This issue concerns privacy when calling in to a manager to take days off. That conversation needs to be kept private. It is wrong for management to tell other employees details.
- What is UTMB’s policy on Flex-Time? Is this something that the Health System supports?
- Will the new UTMB Connect project impact patient care due to physicians having more administrative responsibilities? Will it take doctors away from patients?
- Recently, in the Galveston County Daily News, there was an article about the $90 million Victory Lakes Expansion project. How is this being funded and will this project (along with the building of the new hospital) impact UTMB’s finances – risking employee job security, merit increases, etc.? Is too much being done all at once when the economy is not in the best shape, and there is uncertainty about Health Care Reform and how hospitals and physicians will be reimbursed?
- It seems like lately UTMB favors recruiting from outside the organization versus promoting from within, especially in leadership positions. Do we not have qualified people who can advance, or is there a reason for new recruits from outside?
Mondays in March – March 11, 2013
Danny O. Jacobs, MD, MPH, FACS
Executive Vice President, Provost and Dean of the School of Medicine
Click here to watch the video broadcast and hear the questions below answered (http://vimeo.com/61801598)
- What is the institution’s strategy for recruiting and retaining more research faculty and growing research on campus?
- Regarding the “culture of trust” at UTMB, how can we, as employees, be expected to trust leadership when they don’t have timely and transparent communication? For instance, the School of Medicine underwent a massive reorganization over two months ago, and there still has not been a formal communication regarding those changes. People don’t know where they belong organizationally, and it’s unclear who is responsible for what.
- Increases in efficiency have been cited for many departmental changes, as well as for the denial of additional positions. Even after reorganization over the last year has moved many responsibilities from finance and HR to Institutional Support, the Office of the Provost has remained fully intact and continues to add FTEs. When will the Office of the Provost be held to the same level of efficiency expected in other departments?
- Recently, individuals across the institution have been removed from their positions for not meeting minimum education requirements. However, individuals in the Provost’s Office in similar types of positions have not been removed due to educational insufficiencies. Why is there a double standard?
- What effect will the recent sequestration have on UTMB, specifically our research enterprise?
- Morale is at an all-time low. Employees do not trust leadership, and fear losing their jobs. What is being done to improve these conditions?
- We have less funding, no post docs, and more clinical research. Can we change current tenure requirements to reflect the changing research reality?
Mondays in March – March 18, 2013
William R. Elger, CPA, CGMA
Executive Vice President and Chief Business and Finance Officer
Click here to watch the video broadcast and hear the questions below answered (http://vimeo.com/62286244)
- Why aren’t all application system issues/downtime/delays posted on the iUTMB Alert page? It seems that only patient related systems like Epic, and on occasion, PeopleSoft FMS are posted on the webpage. Other systems such as Oracle Workspace and its subsystems: financial reporting, etc., and HCM Datamart, as well as others, are rarely, if ever, posted to the flash page.
- Housekeeping services continue to be a problem across campus. After repeated service calls, even to management, there has still been no improvement. Additionally, the recent changes in contractor have resulted in even worse service than Sodexo provided. In executive areas, housekeeping services are more frequent and of better quality. Since the contract rates are most likely consistent across campus, why can’t other areas have the same attention? Also, why aren’t the offices and corridors cleaned after hours when there is less foot traffic. It’s hazardous to be mopping floors between 8:00am to 5:00pm. Additionally, we were informed that the non-hospital areas would no longer be cleaned over the weekend. This is problematic because non-patient care employees still work on weekends, and non-patient care buidings, such as the Annex, still get use both via corridors and in restrooms over the weekend by employees, patients, and their families.
- Are there plans to provide opportunities for professional development and continuing education for non-executive staff? There is no standardization across the institution and it usually depends on if you have the budget.
- Why can’t we have some products from the bookstore located somewhere off the island so that it is easier to purchase for the employees who work and live off the island?
- Can we get Employee Assistance Program services off the island so that the employees that live and work off island can have easier access and take more advantage of the services they offer?
- Can parking garages be opened, since so many student spots have been taken away due to construction?
- Has UTMB considered revisiting the idea of flex scheduling for its employees?
Mondays in March – March 25, 2013
David Callender, MD, MBA, FACS
Click here to watch the video broadcast and hear the questions below answered (http://vimeo.com/62833674)
- Work-life balance, telecommuting and flex-time are hot topics in the workplace. What is UTMB doing to help with this?
- Are there areas being planned in the new Jennie Sealy Hospital for employees to have a quiet place to take their break? There is not enough space in John Sealy Tower.
- Is there a better way to schedule an 8-hour unit where nurses do not have to work 7 days straight without overtime in order to have every other weekend off? Who has priority over the schedule: full-time or part-time employees? Why is it that you can’t change your days if you need a day off?
- Prior to Ike, UTMB had on-site child care available for its employees. What needs to happen to bring this back?