IAEE Inaugural Evening Educational Event

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The Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health welcomed the D.C. Chapter of the International Association of Exhibitions and Events’ (IAEE) for an Inaugural Evening Educational event on Thursday, June 22.

Chapter members and their guests experienced a night full of health focused educational activities around work-life balance.  The evening started off with an interactive presentation titled “Cultivating Resiliency for Total Well-Being” from Priya Saha, a Kaiser Permanente workforce health consultant.   She shared with the audiences how to practice mindful meditation and tips for personalizing stress relieving activities.

Following the presentation, guests were invited to participate in several activities stationed around the Center.  A popular activity for the night was the “Dodgewall”, a full-body interactive video game displayed on the Center’s large screen.  Additional activities included a healthy smoothie station with a balance of fruits and vegetables in the mix; a heart healthy red wine and dark chocolate dessert bar, as well as  the center’s own Active Rejuvenation Station – a creative use of video gaming for Instant Recess breaks used by guests of the center during day-long meetings.

IAEE organizers were greatly appreciative of the center for hosting the inaugural evening educational event.  Below are some testimonials from the members.

  • “I’ve been to several IAEE luncheon events and I have to say that the Kaiser [Permanente Center for Total Health] venue and event was the best I’ve attended.” Kim Bercovitz, President & Chief Exercise Officer of Bytes
  • “…tremendously successful Inaugural Evening Education Event. THAT’S what a great event looks like…Well done…Looking forward to next year.” Julie Sullivan, Director of Sponsorships of Fern and IAEE D.C. Chapter Board of Directors
  • “[IAEE D.C. Inaugural Evening Education Event] was a fantastic event!” Micheal Romero, M.A.R. Association & Meeting Management

If you are within the D.C. area and work in the event planning industry, please visit the  IAEE D.C. Chapter website.  To learn more about hosting an event at the center, please visit our events and tours web page to schedule or tour or to find out more about how the center can help plan a healthier event for your special meeting.

The Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health both internal and external organizations educational events.  All events– annual banquet, quarterly meeting, training, interviews, etc—follow the Healthy Meeting Tools.  The Center for Total Health Staff thrive to create an environment that is both fun and informative.  Most of all, we take great pride in supporting your event and our high guest satisfaction scores prove it. If your organization is interested in hosting an event, please send us an event request located on our website.  We look forward to you joining us!

Create Your Life Care Plan Now

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We all try to prepare for life’s major events but, if you suddenly became injured or ill, would you be prepared?  Kaiser Permanente offers a service called Life Care Planning that helps members reflect on their values and beliefs and document future health care decisions in an Advance Directive. This type of planning can help prepare your loved ones to honor your wishes.

Deborah Ahren and Lorraine Griesbach, both with the Mid-Atlantic States Kaiser Permanente Life Care Planning Faculty, said “[Life Care Planning] is important for everyone to start thinking about…you never know what could happen such as a car accident or a stroke. Life often throws curve balls on which the unexpected happens. It is best to be prepared.”

Here are some valuable tips from the Life Care Planning team on planning for your future health care needs:

  1. Remember to express YOUR values, hopes and priorities in every decision you make in creating your Life Care Plan.
  2.   Select someone you trust, such as a spouse or relative, to be your Health Care Agent and speak for you if you become unable to make health care decisions.  Always choose someone you trust to honor your wishes, such as a spouse or relative. Be sure to go over your advance directive with them verbally and in writing.
  3.  Share your advance directive with your physician or health care provider verbally and in writing so they are aware of your desired medical care if you encounter a situation in which you are unable to make your own decisions.
  4. Keep in mind 5 “D’s” that are good times to revisit and update your Life Care Plan: Decade, Divorce, Death, Diagnosis and Decline in Health.

If you want to learn more information about Life Care Planning at Kaiser Permanente, please visit the Life Care Planning website.

The Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health supports various departments and initiatives of Kaiser Permanente and external organizations.  All events– annual banquet, quarterly meeting, training, interviews, —follow the Healthy Meeting Tools created by the Kaiser Permanente.  The Center for Total Health Staff thrive to create an environment that is both fun and informative.  Most of all, we take great pride in supporting your event and our high guest satisfaction scores prove it. If your organization is interested in hosting an event, please send us an event request located on our website.  We look forward to you joining us!




Join the Road to Zero Coalition

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Recently, the Road to Zero coalition hosted “Saving Lives on our Roadways at the Merging Intersection of People & Technology” here at the center.  Speakers and topics included “How Can Safe Systems Compensate for Human Behavior Limitations?” presented by Peter Hancock, director of the MIT2  (Minds in Technology) Research Laboratories from the University of Central Florida and “Modifying the Curve of Future Technology Development with Adoption, Product Development & Gaps in Consumer Education” presented by Chuck Gulash, senior executive engineer from Toyota Motor North American Research Institute and Collaborative Safety Research Center.  Participants broke into groups to begin work on safety priority statements and to advance work on ZERO deaths on our roadways. Breakout groups included the following topics ranked highest in a recent survey:

  • distraction
  • impairment
  • speed
  • safety of vulnerable users
  • infrastructure
  • safety culture/safe systems


The goal is safe mobility for all people and will work to develop priorities; take action individually and collaboratively; and encourage partners and stakeholders to take action to meet the goal of eliminating traffic fatalities by 2050. It might seem like a lofty goal, but key stakeholders think it’s possible.  “The aim of Road to Zero is to get to zero deaths in the next 30 years,” says Debbie Hersman, the president and CEO of the National Safety Council, the lead on the Road to Zero initiative. “That’s the goal. We’ve done this with aviation—there have been several years with zero deaths in commercial aviation—and a lot of people thought that was impossible. We’re really focused on incorporating all of the initiatives that we’ve seen through Toward Zero Deaths, Vision Zero and a number of different groups to get to zero.”

More than 300 organizations have joined the coalition to date and the DOT has committed $1 million a year for three years to fund the various grants and organizations that will be part of the coalition. Road to Zero is a collaboration focused on ending traffic fatalities—a leading cause of unintentional death—on our roadways within 30 years. The National Safety Council leads the initiative as a partnership with the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

Click here if you’d like to join and become a member of our Road to Zero coalition; it takes less than a minute to sign up and there is no cost.  Member organizations become a stakeholder in working towards ZERO fatalities on our roadways and become part of the national solution to ending the upward trend of deaths on our roadways.  How little or how much you participate is up to you.

The Road to Zero coalition is looking forward to hosting their next meeting in October at Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health! The Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health supports various departments and initiatives of Kaiser Permanente and external organizations.  All events– annual banquet, quarterly meeting, training, interviews, etc—follow the Healthy Meeting Tools created by the Kaiser Permanente.  The Center for Total Health Staff thrive to create an environment that is both fun and informative.  Most of all, we take great pride in supporting your event and our high guest satisfaction scores prove it. If your organization is interested in hosting an event, please send us an event request located on our website.  We look forward to you joining us!

Employees + Workforce Health = Increased Daily Productivity

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Kaiser Permanente’s Workforce Health team has geared up to offer their annual Mid-Atlantic Summer 2017 Learning Circle, which will cover some of the hottest topics in Workforce Health and Wellness.   While corporate wellness programs have traditionally focused solely on physical wellness, the industry has begun to recognize the importance of incorporating well-being, which looks at the whole person.  Kaiser Permanente wants all Kaiser Permanente employees and members to be aware of proper Workforce Health strategies so they can incorporate healthy choices into their daily work routine.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, having physical activity programs that focus on the entire well-being of an employee at the work site reduced healthcare cost up to 55 percent, reduced short-term sick leave up to 32 percent and increased employee productivity up to 52 percent!  Kaiser Permanente’s Workforce Health team recognizes these benefits and continues to create the healthiest environment for employees as possible. The participants of the June 13 Learning Circle left with practical tips to integrate into their organizations using the five pillars of well-being—spiritual, physical, mental, social and environmental– so that employees are happy, healthy, and productive.

Carrie Peery, MPH, Senior Consultant of Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic Region Workforce Health, shared with the Center some MORE benefits individual employees and business corporations can experience from Workforce Health.

Q: What are some positive impacts a business can have by incorporating beneficial aspects of workforce health strategies into their daily operations?

A: “Recent research indicates by incorporating workforce health strategies you can enhance recruitment and retention of employees, reduce healthcare costs, decrease rates of illness and injuries reduce employee absenteeism, improve employee relations and morale, and finally increase productivity.”

Q: What are some benefits of work site wellness programs?

A: “Weight reduction, improved physical fitness, increased stamina, lower levels of stress, and increased self-esteem.”

Q: What are some ways Kaiser Permanente has incorporated workforce health strategies in their administrative office

A: Through the Kaiser Permanente Healthy Workplace Initiative, we strive to create and maintain a healthy and safe environment that is vital to thriving work space. Below are some cool and original programs offered to Kaiser Permanente employees.”

      • Breastfeeding SupportKaiser Permanente supports new moms with a variety of breastfeeding resources such as Lactation Support and Lactation Rooms MAS.
      • Stretch Break Software: Employees can download a PC Software that reminds them to take a break from the computer.
      • Healthy Picks: Throughout the Mid-Atlantic States Region, employees are offered “Healthy Pick” snacks and entrée options at cafeterias and vending machines.
      • Health Talks Online: Kaiser Permanente employees are invited to virtually watch expert physicians and researchers present on the latest in healthy eating, exercise, and stress management.
      • Smoke-free Campus: All Kaiser Permanente locations, including medical offices, are smoke free.

The Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health uses many positive Workforce Health strategies to create an environment that is both conducive and productive for all employees and guests.  All events– annual banquets, quarterly meetings, trainings, interviews, etc—follow the Healthy Meeting Tools created by the Kaiser Permanente Workforce health team. 

The Center Staff thrive to create an environment that is both fun and informative.  Most of all, we take great pride in supporting your event and our high guest satisfaction scores prove it. If your organization is interested in hosting an event, please send us an event request located on our website.  We look forward to you joining us!

The National Academy of Social Insurance Gala Was a Success!


Last week, the Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health hosted and served as a sponsor of the 30th Anniversary Celebration of the National Academy of Social Insurance. The event’s theme was inspired by John F. Kennedy speaking at the 25th anniversary of Social Security: “We celebrate the past to awaken the future.”

The celebration honored eight Founding Board Members of the Academy as they passed the torch to a new generation of social insurance leaders. With more than 200 attendees, the guest list included consumers, government representatives, health researchers, healthcare policy makers and more. Guests participated in a VIP reception, a silent auction and a game of Family Feud along with a formal dinner.

One special attendee of the night was Senator Bob Dole. During the early years of the Academy, Senator Dole asked the group to conduct an in-depth study of the Social Security “Notch” issue. According to William Arnone, Chief Executive Officer and Founding Board Member of the Academy, stated “Senator Bob Dole’s support helped shape the Academy as a non-partisan resource.”

If you are looking to host a healthier meeting – or gala — the Center for Total Health serves as a perfect venue for supporting innovation in health and how healthcare is delivered.  Regardless of the occasion–annual banquet, quarterly meeting, trainings, interviews, etc.–we would be glad to host your event. Our staff will work with you on how to create a healthier meeting that is both fun and informative. We have a wide array of event options to make the most out of your gathering.  Most of all, we take great pride in supporting you event and our high guest satisfaction scores prove it. If your organization is interested in hosting an event, please send us an event request located on our website.  We look forward to you joining us!

To learn more about The National Academy of Social Insurance please visit their website.


The Healthcare Anchor Network adds new members


This week, the Healthcare Anchor Network officially launched and expanded its membership to include: Adventist Health, Christiana Care Health System, Cleveland Clinic, Fairview Health Services, Presbyterian Healthcare Services, and VCU Health. The meeting represents the typical kind of convenings that take place at the center every day. At the center, we are dedicated to sharing, developing and accelerating ideas that improve total health around the world. If you are looking for an innovative space to hold your next convening, simply complete an event request form on our website.

For more information on the Healthcare Anchor Network meetings, click here. For more information on how to join the network, contact the Democracy Collaborative.

Here’s What Happened in May at the Center


If you haven’t visited the Center for Total Health recently, May was a busy month with events covering a wide range of topics and initiatives. In addition to hosting robust discussions about preventing violence, preventing and treating cancer, and creating innovative, healthy workplaces, we also had the opportunity to celebrate National Nurses Week (May 6-12) with leaders from the American Nurses Foundation. We not only welcomed this organization to the Center, but also showcased onsite displays that bring to life nursing leadership and communicate our appreciation for the difference nurses make in patients’ lives.

  • We welcomed the National Health Collaborative on Violence and Abuse (NHCVA) – including representatives from more than 30 health professional organizations – to discuss ways to reduce and address the health consequences of intimate partner violence (IPV) and abuse. Our very own Brigid McCaw, MD, represented Kaiser Permanente’s Family Violence Prevention Program, highlighting the crucial role health care play in caring for victims.
  • DC’s Colorectal Cancer Roundtable Summit brought local and national providers, advocates and educators to the Center to discuss the prevention and early detection of colorectal cancer and ways to improve screening rates to 80% by 2018 – a lifesaving goal set by the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable. Joseph Territo, MD, of the Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group, shared how Kaiser Permanente consistently ranks in the top 10% of the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) HEDIS Measures, which assess the number of adults who have had appropriate screening for colorectal cancer. NCQA data is also featured throughout the Center’s onsite displays.
  • The Center hosted the third annual Better Together event, All Systems Go! Closing the Gaps in Cancer Care, with the American Cancer Society and the Council for Accountable Physician Practices. The event highlighted patient stories, representing how coverage and accountable healthcare systems can improve survival and reduce morbidity for people living with complex conditions like cancer.
  • We hosted the Network for Excellence in Health Innovation (NEHI) and challenged attendees to think about Health Care Without Walls, a mind-shift to caring for patients outside of conventional institutional settings. To help get the conversation started, the center’s staff presented “Imaging Care Anywhere,” an example of our own provocation used with staff to think about the next generation of care for Kaiser Permanente members.
  • CoreNet Global’s Mid-Atlantic Chapter turned to Center to host an educational event focused on The Healthy Workplace, highlighting the subtle nudges that can be built into our work environments to drive healthier behaviors. Architects, designers, facility managers and other professionals learned how improving the health and wellbeing of employees through facility design can improve an organization’s bottom line, and also toured the Center’s interactive space to see the learnings come to life.

During the month, the Center also hosted meetings on improving prenatal conversations, credentialing of community health workers, and increasing the quality of ambulatory services, and welcomed a wide range of students, health care leaders, government employees and medical professionals for tours of our interactive and educational facility.

Supporting Healthy Communities through Collaboration: The Healthcare Anchor Network

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Supporting Healthy Communities through Collaboration: The Healthcare Anchor Network

Last December, 40 health systems gathered at the Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health in Washington DC, to explore together how we can advance thriving, inclusive economies in the communities we serve across the country. This week, we’ll gather again to officially launch the Healthcare Anchor Network.

This collaboration represents a critical milestone in mobilizing our sector towards action and collaboration, and we are so proud to be a founding member.

Other founders include Advocate Health Care, Catholic Health Initiatives, Dignity Health, Henry Ford Health System, ProMedica, Providence St. Joseph Health, RWJBarnabas Health, UMass Memorial Health Care, Rush University Medical Center and Trinity Health.

And the Network continues to grow – new members include Adventist Health System, Bon Secours Health System, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Christiana Care Health System, Cleveland Clinic, Dartmouth-Hitchcock, Gundersen Health System, HealthEast Care System, Mercy Health, Northwell Health, Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center, Partners Healthcare (Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s), Presbyterian Healthcare Services, Presence Health, Seattle Children’s Hospital, UC San Francisco and VCU Health.

The lessons from the December meeting, and the vision of the Healthcare Anchor Network are presented in a report produced in partnership with the Democracy Collaborative and the founding members of the Network. The report reflects our collective voice calling our sector to action. It also provides useful examples and tools, to help health systems across the country become familiar with the policies and practices they might adopt to more intentionally support inclusive economic development in their communities. The examples and tools (produced with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation) focus in particular on how healthcare providers can hire, buy goods and services, and invest capital in ways which benefit communities and residents most effectively.

These efforts are not easy—at Kaiser Permanente, we are working day-by-day to overcome the obstacles to adopting an anchor approach cross-functionally across our organization. We believe that our individual and collective journey in this important work will be greatly improved and our positive impacts amplified, if we work together.

The new Healthcare Anchor Network will convene health systems in order to share best practices, address common challenges, and identify areas where collaborative efforts may be possible. Our initial efforts will focus around:

1.     Making the case for adopting an anchor strategy;

2.     Effective collaboration with community stakeholders in these efforts;

3.     Shifting incentives to reward upstream health investments;

4.     Aligning approaches for scale;

5.     Building evidence of impact; and,

6.     Developing a shared policy agenda around addressing upstream determinants of health.

The Center for Total Health—an interactive learning destination committed to supporting innovation in how healthcare is delivered and experienced—provides the perfect venue for these conversations. We’re looking forward to gathering again at the Center this week to continue advancing healthcare sector innovation and collaboration for inclusive, thriving communities. We hope you and your health system will join us!

To learn more about the Healthcare Anchor Network, including how to join, contact David Zuckerman at the Democracy Collaborative, dave@democracycollaborative.org.

The Center for Total Health hosts third-annual Better Together Health


From left to right: Jayne O’Donnell (Moderator), Laura Seeff, MD, Alan Balch, PhD, John Bulger, DO, Michael Kanter, MD


On May 24, the Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health hosted All Systems Go! Closing the Gaps in Cancer Care, the third-annual Better Together Health event, led by the American Cancer Society (ACS) and the Council for Accountable Physician Practices (CAPP). The event highlighted patient stories, representing how coverage and accountable healthcare systems can improve survival and reduce morbidity for people living with complex conditions like cancer.

Laura Fegraus, Executive Director of CAPP led opening remarks with an overview of the state of cancer care in America. She presented research on what physicians and patients value, with evidence-based medicine, doctor-patient relationships, and care coordination topping each list. “Patients aren’t getting what they need,” she says, stressing the importance of coordinated care. “We are not there yet, and that’s why we’re here today.”

Robert Pearl, MD, Chair of CAPP (@RobertPearlMD), provided contextual framework for the event’s discussion of gaps in American health care, citing his recently published book, Mistreated: Why We Think We’re Getting Good Health Care—and Why We’re Usually Wrong. “If we cannot lower the cost increase [in health care] and do it through better quality, coordination, technology and leadership, the system will get disrupted. This is the time to change.”

Danielle Carnival, PhD, Deputy Director of the Biden Foundation’s Cancer Initiative provided a sense of hope, urgency, and change in the approach to cancer care by encouraging partnerships. Discussing racial and socioeconomic disparities, she stated: “Culturally appropriate cancer outreach efforts are needed to reach people where they are.” Dr. Carnival alluded to Cancer Moonshot in the goals of The Biden Foundation’s Cancer Initiative, which she says will “break down silos that stand as barriers for patients.”

After viewing two patient stories: Hunter’s of Geisinger Health System and Daria’s of Kaiser Permanente, Jayne O’Donnell of USA Today moderated a panel discussion featuring Alan Balch, PhD, CEO of the Patient Advocate Foundation, John Bulger, MD, Chief Medical Officer for Population Health, Geisinger Health System, Michael Kanter, MD, Medical Director of Quality and Clinical Analysis, Southern California Permanente Medical Group, and Laura Seeff, MD, Director of the Office of Health Systems Collaboration, CDC.

Dr. Kanter said the detection of residual cancer in Daria’s case and so many others is “the obligation of every [PMG] physician to look at the whole patient.” In the case of barriers for change in the current health care system, he said, “There’s issues of will and physician leadership.” Dr. Bulger agreed that “physicians need to coordinate care, rather than work against each other.”

Addressing a lack of data use, Dr. Balch called on physicians to harness data. “Data creates evidence to drive action, linking science to prevention,” Dr. Seeff said. Referring to the researchable data on preventable cancer deaths, Richard Wender, MD, Chief Cancer Control Officer, ACS, stated an increase in survival rates requires “a need to invest in a disproportionate way what is proven to work.”

Dr. Seeff reminded that in “cancer survivorship, it’s key to remember the human element.” There are several factors blocking patients’ access to cancer, outside of treatment, such as logistics, transportation, and food security, among others, Dr. Balch warned.

Office of the National Coordinator Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health Technology Reform John Fleming, MD, gave a keynote address on policy. His suggestion that “Every American should have a single, unified electronic head record available in the cloud,” from anywhere, at all times, for all involved physicians to access was met with approval from event audience.

While the outlook on American healthcare is uncertain, the panel and speakers are hopeful. They agreed with Dr. Kanter that for now, “Nothing is more important than the issue of health care access and coverage.” For more information on Better Together Health, click here.

Violence and Your Health


The National Health Collaborative on Violence and Abuse (NHCVA), comprised of more than 30 national health professional organizations dedicated to addressing the health consequences of violence and abuse, held its annual meeting this month at the Center for Total Health. Brigid McCaw, MD, of Kaiser Permanente’s Family Violence Prevention Program participated in the meeting. “What I love about hosting meetings here at the center is the connections that you make. The center allows conversations to happen that are bigger than the building itself, bigger than what’s just included in its four walls. Diverse groups gather here and tackle issues bigger than themselves and implement real solutions to problems that impact everyone’s health.”

Two focus areas emerged during the meeting: 1) education of health care professionals from all disciplines and 2) understanding current/potential legislative policy on issues related to adult, child and elder abuse. All forms of violence were discussed. Speakers from medical societies, advocacy orgs and the federal government shared best practices so everyone could learn from one another.

“The relationship between violence and health is becoming more well-known. We know that exposure to violence as a child can impact your long-term health, said Paula Amato, MD, immediate past chair of NHCVA. “We need to promote the science of violence to the next generation of health care leaders.  Partners such as Kaiser Permanente, as well as other member organizations, are helping shape that progress.”

Moving forward, NHCVA members would like to see greater access to resources for victims of violence.  Health care providers and health systems are starting to share best practices in caring for victims of violence. Longer-term and, perhaps more pro-actively, health care systems can play a bigger role in the prevention, the intervention and the promotion of healthier relationships.

Futures without Violence is a member of NHCVA. Futures offers numerous resources for trauma-informed care. Through the collaborative work facilitated through NHCVA, we can expect to see promotion of tools for clinics and health professionals as well as discussions on what models of care are available to be better integrate care for victims of violence wherever they enter the health care system.

Ultimately, violence is just as much a part of someone’s health as are other social and behavioral determinants of health (e.g., race, ethnicity, food insecurity, depression, substance misuse, etc.)  Thankfully, the work of NHVCA are starting to raise the visibility of this issue and bringing forth the opportunity for real change.