Here’s What Happened in May at the Center

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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.

Nursing Leadership Now On Display

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In November 2016, I had the distinct (and long sought after) honor of meeting alumni of the Kaiser Foundation School of Nursing (KFSN).

Deana Medinas, Clair Lisker, Deloras Jones, and Phyllis Moroney are graduates of KFSN, which was open from 1947-1976, and graduated 1,065 health professionals.

Clair Lisker was a student of Dorothea Daniels, the first administrator of Permanente Foundation Hospital Los Angeles in 1953, and later the administrator of Kaiser Permanente San Francisco. Phyllis Moroney was the first nurse practitioner in California. Deana Medinas became the medical group administrator for Kaiser Permanente Hayward.

They didn’t know as much about Kaiser Permanente when they chose KSFN. However, they did know the Kaiser Foundation School of Nursing was ranked the #1  nursing school in California. And then they practiced and later helped build Permanente Medicine.

After our visit, Deloras shared these beautiful Legacy of Kaiser Permanente Nursing video stories, which we knew should also have a home here at the Center for Total Health.

So, on the day that the Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine came to the Center for Total Health for a historic dialogue on medical student well-being and resilience, our “Leadership in Nursing” was installed and ready, thanks to the Center for Total Health team.

In the photograph above, you can see the piece being played for the first time to an audience of medical education leaders from across the United States. Marc Klau, MD, Vice Dean of Education and Clinical Integration, is next to the display. Also present are Patrick Courneya, MD, and Ed Ellison, MD.

Most all of us encounter nurses in our life’s journey. I can tell you that physicians like me are trained by nurses in my own journey. To know where you’re going, it’s important to know where you came from. And there, you usually find people who live in the future, too (these nurses were practicing the kind of medicine in the 50’s that we are trying to get to today!) just like the 54,000 nurses who care for, treat and heal 11.8 million members across the care settings and specialties of Kaiser Permanente.

Honoring National Diabetes Month and World Diabetes Day

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In honor of National Diabetes Month and World Diabetes Day, we wanted to highlight important research available at the Center for Total Health.  The study is one of the largest and most ethnically diverse to look at maternal diabetes as a risk factor for autism.  Many have probably heard of other suspected causes, but time and time again guests at the center are surprised to hear that children whose mothers developed gestational diabetes by the 26th week of pregnancy were at increased risk of developing autism later in life, according to a Kaiser Permanente study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association on April 14, 2015.  And that’s just a sample of the power of an electronic health record (EHR).

“Kaiser Permanente is uniquely qualified to conduct large scale studies in a real-word setting with the power of our integrated, comprehensive electronic health record,” said lead author Anny Xiang, of the Kaiser Permanente Southern California Department of Research and Evaluation.  “We can follow many women through the electronic health records and assess potential links between historical information and their own health outcomes, and their children’s health outcomes. The large size is particularly important to study rare diseases such as autism spectrum disorders. Appropriate analysis of these data can reveal important findings which could impact our approach to patient care.” She noted that this was an observational study, therefore the findings reveal associations between gestational diabetes and risk of a child developing autism rather than proving a cause and effect relationship.

Researchers examined the electronic health records of more than 322,000 ethnically diverse children born between 28 and 44 weeks at Kaiser Permanente Southern California medical centers between January 1995 and December 2009.  They followed the children for an average of 5.5 years and found that those exposed to gestational diabetes by the 26th week of pregnancy had a 63% increased risk of being diagnose with an autism spectrum disorder than children who were not exposed.  After taking into account maternal age, education, race and ethnicity, household income and other factors, the increased risk of autism associated with gestational diabetes was 42 percent.

For more information on the study, click here.

To learn more about this and other innovation at Kaiser Permanente, visit the Center for Total Health.

Why You Should Reflect on Your Health This September

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When was the last time you reflected on your total health journey? From your childhood experiences to your future in old age, what phase of life are you in and how do you envision your health moving forward?

At the Center for Total Health, we believe that having a dialogue about your health is critical, which is why we’re encouraged by the following health-related observances in September and the wisdom they provide us. Along with each observance, we’ve provided questions for reflection and would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below.

Fruits and Veggies—More Matters and Childhood Obesity

Whether it’s through physical movement or eating more fruits and vegetables, teaching children and adults the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle has the power to end childhood obesity and create a positive ripple effect from the local to the national level.

We observe Fruits and Veggies – More Matters Month and Childhood Obesity Month in September to spread awareness about how people can live healthier lives. In alignment with this mission, CTH showcases work being done across the country to make this goal a reality. Through our immersive exhibits we display change in action —like the implementation of the “Let’s Move! Active Schools” campaign in Miami, featured on our Health Discovery Wall. Our interactive map highlights the locations in Miami that have increased physical activity in schools, showcasing how individual or local change can make a difference.

Health Reflection: What foods and exercise currently support your total health – physically, mentally and emotionally?

Healthy Aging and World Alzheimer’s

Life can be challenging for Leo and Rosemary – two elderly personas featured at CTH. Leo shows signs of cognitive impairment and Rosemary, his wife and caregiver, has to ensure that he takes his medication and goes to his appointments, while also having to care for her own emotional health. With Rosemary’s help, Leo is aging in place, able to live in the comfort of his own home and community.

The month of September provides us the opportunity to address both the challenges as well as the positive aspects of growing older by observing both World Alzheimer’s Month and Healthy Aging Month. These observances touch on a delicate, yet immensely important phase of life – how we age and the responsibilities that come with growing older. We’re reminded to be more intentional with our actions and how they can affect our health later in life.

Health Reflection: In our busy, every day lives how often do we pause to think about how we’d like to age? What are we doing (or not doing) now that could help us age in a stronger, healthier way?

Regardless of age, we can all benefit from discussing what these observances mean for us, our family members and our community.

What’s one way to start prioritizing your health and the health of your friends, family or colleagues? By visiting and hosting a meeting or event at the Center for Total Health. You can find more information here.

I Want To Be The Next Summer Intern!

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This summer, I interned at the Center for Total Health through the Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic Summer Internship Program. I am currently a senior at James Madison University majoring in Health Science and with minor in Health Communications.  After graduation in May 2017, I plan on attending graduate school to obtain a Master’s in Public Health.  My future career goal is to educate disadvantaged populations in the United States about various health topics to help eliminate current health disparities in our country.  The Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic Summer Internship Program has tremendously prepared me for success in the future and in an industry-leading healthcare company.

On July 22, 2016, I provided tours to the youth participants of the 2016 DC Summer Youth Employment Program. [Photo By: O Grant]

On July 22, 2016, I provided tours to the youth participants of the 2016 DC Summer Youth Employment Program.
[Photo By: O Grant]

I was given various projects this summer that have honed my skills and knowledge of health.  One project I was given was to provide informative tours of the Center for Total Health to guests.  The tour consists of content exploring topics including Kaiser Permanente’s history, different aspects of total health, and advancements in telemedicine.  Not only have my presentation skills improved, I am now equipped with conversation starters to engage in meaningful dialogues with professionals in health related fields. Another project I was given, also my personal favorite, was the honor to design a display showcasing African-American history throughout Kaiser Permanente.  It will be displayed at a VIP luncheon hosted for top employers and partners of Kaiser Permanente Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals, held in September.  Kaiser Permanente Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals demonstrates and embraces diversity in the workplace, therefore the company is a proud financial contributor to the new African-American History Smithsonian in Washington, DC.  To complete the project, I researched the content, contacted Kaiser Permanente diversity committees, and wrote a creative brief for the display.  This project allowed me to take the initiative and utilize the leadership skills I have learned throughout college.

As a participant of the Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic Summer Internship Program, I also attended weekly professional development forums organized by current Kaiser Permanente employees. The forums were interactive, informative and a key to my professional growth this summer. We discussed resume writing, networking skills, interview tips, professional dress and much more.  In addition to the professional development forums, we attended a Nationals’ baseball game in July and spent an afternoon volunteering with SOME (So Others Might Eat), a community based organization in DC to help poor and homeless residents.

The ten-week program has placed me a step ahead of my peers entering the workforce after graduation in May.  At the conclusion of the program, I have taken away valuable items to place into a portfolio, strong communication skills, confidence in my work ability and strengthened my soft skills in professional office setting.  I am very thankful for this opportunity and appreciate the Center for Total staff for welcoming me on board this summer.  In the future, I would love to work for Kaiser Permanente after completing my education.

If you are interested in being an undergrad intern through the Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic Summer Internship Program next summer, please visit www.kaiserpermanentejobs.org to learn more!

This Week in Total Health: Sweating the Details

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Another busy week has drawn to a close at the Center for Total Health.

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Brendan O’Grady, WELL AP, explains initial readings to Kathy Gerwig, vice president of Employee Safety, Health and Wellness, and environmental stewardship officer and Carol Corr, AIA, LEED GA, EDAC, Design Program Manager, National Planning and Design, National Facilities Services

On Monday and Tuesday, the center welcomed Delos (@DelosLiving)for the first step of our WELL Building Standard Certification.  Ted Eytan (@tedeytan) wrote an in-depth summary of the experience.

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Kathy Porter

Our team was thrilled to meet Kathy Porter, who is the face of the original Alexandra persona used by our design teams, and Cathryn Burby from the American Cancer Society this week.

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Cathryn Burby, Senior Director, Community Engagement at the American Cancer Society

August brings heat and humidity to our nation’s capital, making it a notoriously quiet month across the city. Our team is taking advantage of this time to get our ducks in a row for a busy fall. If you’d like to come the Center for Total Health for a tour or event, please let us know!

Mayor, What Will You Do To Improve My Health?

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On July 19,  Smart Growth America (@SmartGrowthUSA) hosted its annual Local Leaders Council (@SGALocalLeaders),meeting at the Center for Total Health.  Attendees included influential leaders from various communities around the nation including mayors, city council members, county officials, city managers and agency heads. The event allowed these influential leaders to incorporate total health into their community and the content at the center provided a perfect backdrop.

Geoffrey Anderson, president of Smart Growth America, started off the event with a warm welcome. Parris Glendening, former governor of Maryland, and Rick Danner, mayor of Greer, South Carolina, both spoke about the excellent solutions Smart Growth America has developed.  The keynote speaker, Amy Liu (@amy_liuw), the vice president and director of Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings, touched on growth and planning during her talk, titled  “Economic Development for All”.  Through her work in urban and social planning in challenged economic communities in Philadelphia, she has learned numerous solutions to improving residents overall quality of life by improving the economy in a neighborhood.  As Amy Liu stated, “Better jobs, access to grocery stores and community programs for youth will improve the health of disadvantaged residents.”  It was a pleasure hearing Amy Liu’s solutions and ideas for creating healthier neighborhoods, mainly in metropolitan areas such as Washington, DC, and its surroundings.

Throughout the day, Smart Growth America rotated through different breakout sessions and seminars for guests to discuss and brainstorm solutions.  One such seminar was Creative Placemaking Strategies, giving community leaders tools for success. Another was Revitalization without Displacement, which encouraged leaders to  brainstorm strategies to improve the economy in their community.  Guests also networked with one another over a catered lunch and were invited on a 20 minute guided walking tour with Ted Eytan, MD, (@tedeytan). The event ended with a closing plenary discussion by Peg Moertl, the senior vice president of Community Development Banking of PNC Bank, Sarah Goldfarb, director of Policy and Research of Jersey City Redevelopment Agency, Ken Bowers, planning director in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Dean Gordon, director of Business Growth in Birmingham, Alabama.

Once again, the center is glad Smart Growth America held this inspirational annual event at the Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health.  If you would like to host an event at our center, please visit our website.

Week in Total Health: All About the Future

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The week of July 18 was a busy one for the Center for Total Health, with six events in five days, including three for 100 people each.

The week started off with the Smart Growth America Local Leaders Summit (@SGALocalLeaders), a gathering of local officials from cities and towns across the country. The day covered a number of strategies for building health into municipalities of all sizes, from small, rural towns to large, urban cities. True to form, the attendees enjoyed a walk through the neighborhood, including a view of our complete street from the bridge above.

SGA Walk

A health organization team retreat and a school nutrition non-profit training kept us on our toes on Wednesday.

The end of the week was filled by young residents of Washington, DC, participating in the city’s Summer Youth Employment Program (@MBSYEP). Over two days, nearly 200 participants came to the CTH to participate in health workshops led by Kaiser Permanente’s  (@KPMidAtlantic) Health Education team on topics ranging from quality ratings to relaxation techniques.

Deputy Mayor for Greater Economic Opportunity Courtney R. Snowden (@DMGEOSnowden) spoke to the students, reminding them that every minute of every day is an opportunity to work toward their goals. It was great to spend two days with the future of this city.

Deputy Mayor for Greater Economic Opportunity Courtney R. Snowden addresses SYEP participants.

Deputy Mayor Snowden addresses SYEP participants

Transgender Health Meet and Greet

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In 2013, we hosted a first conversation, the Transgender Health Care Dialogue. In 2016, we hosted our next, Transgender Health Meet and Greet.

A lot has happened in three years, in our society, in the medical profession, and at Kaiser Permanente. The 2016 event included physicians, nurses, and health leaders from Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic States, Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group, and The Southeast Permanente Medical Group.

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They joined with the Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia LGBTQ community to meet Drs. Kathy Rumer and Rachel Bluebond-Langner to learn about surgical care for people who are transgender or gender non-conforming – hence “Transgender Health Meet and Greet.”

It’s an honor to participate in the future of care delivery at Kaiser Permanente, an organization that values the diversity and inclusion of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender members (and staff).

Total Health definitely includes the doctors, nurses, and health care system that enable people to live as their authentic selves, as members, as caregivers, as leaders in their communities. I can’t wait to see what happens next.

This Week in Total Health: It’s All About Care

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Another busy week wraps up at the Center for Total Health. We welcomed inspiring visitors and conversations ranging from telehealth to heart health, focused both on our own members and the community at large.

On Wednesday, Kaiser Permanente’s Community Benefit team hosted a convening for community practitioners to share our ALL/PHASE protocol, which is a  simple, inexpensive, evidence-based regimen of medications that dramatically reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke among diabetics. The ALL/PHASE program was a winner of the 2010 James A. Vohs Award for Quality and is one of the innovative ways Kaiser Permanente shares information and tools to measure disparities and promote equitable care. The attendees also very literally walked the walk of heart health by joining the CTH team for a 30 minute walk before lunch.

Kaiser Permanente's ALL/PHASE Community Convening

Kaiser Permanente’s ALL/PHASE Community Convening

Michael Adcock, FACHE, Administrator at the University of Mississippi Center for TeleHealth, presents to the Connected Health Coalition.

Michael Adcock, FACHE, Administrator of the University of Mississippi Center for TeleHealth.

On Tuesday, the Connected HealthCoalition hosted an in-person meeting featuring a presentation from the University of Mississippi Medical Center’s Center for Telehealth (@UMMCTelehealth). Michael Adcock, FACHE, the Administrator of the Center for TeleHealth, shared the amazing work going that organization is leading across the state to increase access for all residents to medical care, health education and public health services through telehealth.

 

We were also honored to host an event focused on the transgender community. The “Transgender Health Meet and Greet,”  included physicians, nurses, and health leaders from Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic States, Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group, and The Southeast Permanente Medical Group. Our physicians and clinicians hosted two surgeons, along with representatives from the LGBTQ community from Washington DC, Maryland, and Virginia to talk about surgical care for people who are transgender or gender non-conforming. A full post about that event can be found here.

Interns from the Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group

Interns from the Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group

Another thrill for the week – to meet the Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group’s summer interns. These future health care leaders had great ideas about total health, and enjoyed our newest exhibit – a virtual reality tour of Baltimore.

As always, these are just a few of the pictures from the week. The full set can be found here.