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November 9, 2012


Vol. 31, No. 13

Air Force veteran instills quality in new career By Cindy ABole Public Relations


here are two things that U.S. Air Force retired Chief Master Sgt. Jennifer Hooks carries as a reminder of her 26-year military career prior to joining MUSC in 2010. One is a gold two-tone chief signet ring that she wears on her right hand. The signet features an image of an American Indian chief’s head, which symbolizes the U.S. Air Force’s top enlisted rank of a chief master sergeant. The Indian chief is regarded as the highest member of the tribe and as an elder whom others look to for leadership. Tucked away in her purse, Hooks also carries a military challenge coin – a tradition that she and other military members embrace to commemorate their military affiliations or successful missions. Hooks, the manager for the Performance Improvement Department in the medical center’s Office of Quality and Patient Safety, said a military career afforded her opportunities in various clinical, administrative and performanceimprovement experiences around the world. Hooks has been able to translate that training and experience to health care and establish best practices for qualitydriven systemwide projects. Her efforts cut costs for the medical center and improved overall patient care. Hooks’ Air Force and post-retirement health care careers came full circle. Born in


Brooklyn, N.Y., Hooks later moved to Marion, before enrolling in Trident Technical College’s dental assistant program in Charleston, where she conducted her clinical work at MUSC. In the 1980s, she remembers the Charleston area as a vibrant military town with the Charleston Air Force Base, Charleston Naval Base and Shipyard, and The Citadel as active entities. She thought, “These folks are having so much fun. I want to be able to do that, too.” After much courting by the U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force, she enlisted as an Air Force dental assistant in 1985. Her first assignment was working with the 78th Dental Squadron at Robins Air Force Base (AFB) in Georgia from 1985 to 1998. Robins AFB was home to the Air Force Headquarters Reserve Unit so she cared for military personnel, airmen and their families. There, she rose from the rank of airman to master sergeant. Hooks also went on to hold assignments at Hanscom AFB outside of Boston; Elmendorf AFB in Anchorage, Alaska; McGuire AFB in Lakehurst, N.J.; and Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in Wrightstown, N.J., where she retired as superintendent and principle senior enlisted advisor of the 87th Medical Group, with the rank of chief master sergeant. She was in charge of the training, progression and performance of more than 200 enlisted personnel. Throughout her career, Hooks completed a variety of leadership courses and professional training including

autiSm Study With area children MUSC received a $1 million grant involving Tri-county children for a three-year study.


Jennifer Hooks, shown at her home in Alaska, is selected as chief master sergeant in 2005. Hooks is among just 1 percent promoted from the Air Force’s enlisted ranks to chief. Watch a video on Hooks at MUSC_JenniferHooks. the USAF’s Noncommissioned Officer Leadership Academy, Chief Master Sergeant Leadership Course and other programs. She also earned both her bachelor’s degree in occupational education (2005) and a master’s degree in business administration (2010). In 2007, Hooks participated in the Air Force’s newest program to improve quality and performance in airfield operations, intelligence and defense activities. The program was based on the Lean Six Sigma methodology to support one mission at McGuire AFB.

See Air ForCe on page 10

MUSC Performance Improvement Department In recent years, improving health care quality has become a top priority in the health care system. MUSC’s Performance Improvement Department’s passion is to improve health care performance. The continuous use of MUSC’s standard approach Improve model has driven the success of many project teams. For information or to register for classes, visit cceps/I.M.P.R.O.V.E./index.htm.

Pharmacy StudentS Win Big Students from MUSC and the University of South Carolina participated in the skills competition.



U.S. Navy veteran


Thank you veterans


Meet Julio

2 The CATAlysT, November 9, 2012

Academic career enhanced by 10 years in U.S. Navy Dr. David Soper, right, reached the rank of commander in the United States Navy before he joined the MUSC staff in 1996. He will be thinking about the servicemen and their wives, whom he took care of while stationed in the Philippines, on Veterans Day. Soper also is vice chairman for clinical affairs at MUSC. To watch a video on Soper, visit DrSoper.

By Ashley BArker Public Relations


avid Soper, M.D., the J. Marion Sims professor of obstetrics and gynecology, was in the United States Navy Medical Corp for 10 years, reaching the rank of commander prior to starting his academic medical career. He joined the Navy in 1972 in order to pay for medical school at the University of Miami. After completing his residency in San Diego, Calif., Soper, along with his wife and two sons, was eventually stationed at Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines, for two years. “I had always been committed to an academic medical career, but I was struggling to find a niche. I liked it all. I liked delivering babies and performing gynecological surgery, making the choice of sub-specializing in either obstetrics or gynecologic cancer untenable. It was at this time I visited the St. Lazarus Hospital in Manila.” The hospital was full of patients with Third World diseases including tuberculosis, malaria and tetanus. Iron lungs were still being used. This started his fascination with infectious diseases, and he decided to apply for an adult infectious disease fellowship. Initially, the Navy didn’t want to assign an OB-GYN doctor to what was

an internal medicine fellowship. It took a pivotal decision by then Rear Admiral Fran Shea, director of the Navy’s Health Science Education and Training Command, to allow the additional training. “It almost chokes me up,” he said. “She was able to recognize the possibilities and give me that unique opportunity. I’ll never forget her.” Soper is one of a few OB-GYN doctors in the country with formal infectious disease training, and he now directs his own reproductive infectious disease fellowship.

“I really loved being a medical officer in the Navy,” he said. “I would have stayed in the Navy for 20 years if I could have been more supported in my academic pursuits, research and education.” After 10 years in the military, Soper decided to leave the Navy and join the civilian ranks in an academic institution. He spent 10 years at the Medical College of Virginia before moving to MUSC in 1996. “We take care of patients here in the Lowcountry that have husbands

Film about tobacco industry whistle blower to be shown at MUSC

MUSC, along with other community partners, is bringing the film “Addiction Incorporated” to Charleston for two free screenings to be held Nov. 14 and 15 at MUSC and the College of Charleston. The events are being held in conjunction with the American Cancer Society’s Great American SmokeOut, which is Nov. 15 – a day when cigarette smokers are encouraged to try and quit for a day and hopefully a lifetime. The film tells the story of former Phillip Morris employee Victor DeNoble, Ph.D., who blew the whistle on how the company engineered cigarettes to be highly addictive when he testified before Congress in 1994. His testimony revealed how certain additives in cigarettes dramatically increased the addictiveness. DeNoble’s revelations about how cigarettes were engineered to keep people hooked contributed to the groundbreaking litigation that has hounded the tobacco industry ever since. In addition to the screening, a display titled “Century

of Cigarettes” will be in the Drug Discovery Building lobby. The display depicts the factors that have led to the rise and fall of lung cancer rates in the United States during the 20th century. The Hollings Cancer Center and Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Services are sponsoring the film screening and display. The MUSC event will be held in the Drug Discovery Building auditorium. A brief reception with refreshments will be held at 5 p.m. followed by the film screening at 5:30 p.m. including a question and answer session with the film’s producer, director and attorney Jodi Flowers. Flowers is with the Charleston-based law firm Motley Rice, which led the litigation against the tobacco industry in the late 1990s that eventually resulted in the Master Settle Agreement and the release of 60 million pages of previously secret internal company documents. For information on this event and to register, go to or email Pam Knox at

who are serving in Afghanistan or deployed on Navy ships,” he said. “It impacts everything they do from normal family life to planning a pregnancy to celebrating birthdays.” On Veterans Day, Soper said he will be thinking about those servicemen. “My family has a familiar respect for those who serve in the military and an appreciation for the sacrifices they make,” he said. “Veterans Day helps us remember those who have given the ultimate sacrifice for the freedoms we enjoy in this country.”

The Catalyst Editorial of fice MUSC Office of Public Relations 135 Cannon Street, Suite 403C, Charleston, SC 29425. 843-792-4107 Fax: 843-792-6723 Editor: Kim Draughn Catalyst staff: Cindy Abole, Ashley Barker, The Catalyst is published once a week. Paid adver tisements, which do not represent an endorsement by MUSC or the State of South Carolina, are handled by Island Publications Inc., Moultrie News, 134 Columbus St., Charleston, S.C., 843-849-1778 or 843-958-7490.

The CATAlysT, November 9, 2012 3

First-of-its-kind autism study with local children launched MUSC received a $1 million grant from Autism Speaks to do a large-scale, first-of-its-kind study of children born in 2004 in the Tri-county area involving families willing to participate. The three-year study, called the South Carolina Children’s Educational Surveillance Study (Success), will conduct broad screening and targeted diagnostic assessment to better understand typical development in 8-year-old children as well as estimate the prevalence of autism spectrum disorders among children in Charleston, Berkeley and Dorchester counties. Co-principal investigator Laura Carpenter, Ph.D., said it’s exciting to be part of a study that can shed light on a disorder that affects record numbers of children. “This study is the first of its kind to be conducted in the U.S.,” she said. “What makes it exciting is that we really don’t know what we will find. On the one hand, similar studies in other countries have found high rates of autism in the general population, maybe higher than we suspect. On the other hand, many people also think that autism is being over diagnosed.” Lydia King, Ph.D., who also serves as co-principal investigator on the study, said that all survey results are kept confidential and that participating families will receive a letter or phone call regarding their child’s results. Some children will be invited to participate in a second phase of the study, for which compensation

is provided. Parents who complete the survey are not obligated to participate in the second phase of the study. Walter Jenner, information officer for the state’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network (ADDM) study, is part of the team tasked with making connections with local schools. More than 130 schools including public, private, charter and even home school, will be included, marking the first large scale involvement in regular education schools and with parents. Jenner said study results, available in 2015, will give health professionals and legislators a better understanding of autism prevalence as well as a rich source of information on characteristics and developmental trajectory. “It should help communities in planning and policy decisions. Some of the resources that are needed include therapies, trained teachers, diagnosticians, health care providers and related service professionals. Understanding the characteristics and number of children who have ASDs is key to promoting awareness of the condition, helping educators and providers to coordinate service delivery, and identifying important clues for further research,” he said. Researchers are taking great care to ensure that all data collected for Success is stored on a secured system designed specifically for research. No information about

any of the participating families will be shared with schools or any other state agency. Carpenter said one hope of the study is that they may be able to identify some children who may have fallen through the cracks otherwise, while another is to evaluate the changing criteria in diagnosing autism, particularly given the revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders to a new version that will change the criteria of its diagnosis. “One of the biggest challenges of researching a disorder like autism is that the criteria keep changing over time,” said Carpenter. “It can be very difficult to determine whether there are more kids with autism, or whether our criteria have broadened to include more kids. We want to know how the upcoming changes in diagnostic criteria may impact who is diagnosed with the disorder. We know there are going to be some changes in who is identified, but it’s not clear what those changes will be.” The Success team will be in Charleston County schools during the 2012-2013 school year and in Dorchester and Berkeley county schools during the 2013-2014 school year. Children in private schools and being home schooled also will participate during both study years. For information, visit, email or call 876-2875.

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Currents Nov. 5 People – Fostering employee pride and loyalty Employee of the Month— September q Kevin Freeman, 6E Environmental Services, was recognized for helping a transplant patient and his family clean up a dysfunctional toilet that was emptying human waste in the patient’s shower. Freeman cleaned the area and called maintenance to fix the problem. (Nominated by Wendy Weesner, patient’s wife) q Carolyn Simmons, 9E, was praised for her dedication to provide quality patient care as the unit secretary. Simmons helped an out-of-town patient confirm his appointment at the North Charleston specialty clinic. The nurse manager asked Simmons for her help in rescheduling the patient’s appointment and confirm directions. Simmons met with the patient to communicate details. (Nominated by Leah Ramos) q Belinda Christy, Volunteer & Guest Services, assisted a Heart & Vascular

patient and his wife who received care at MUSC last July. The husband had just completed a cardiac ablation procedure and was having dinner in the North Area and had passed out. The patient was transported back to MUSC for care. Christy volunteered to shuttle the patient’s wife back to North Charleston to pick up the couple’s car and guided the wife back downtown so she would arrive safely. (Nominated by Kenneth and Susan Daniels, patient and wife) 2012 MUSC Angel Tree Liz Nista, Transplant Center, was joined by members of the MUSC Angel Tree board. Members are employees from around MUSC’s campus invited to plan for this campaign. Last year, employees adopted more than 1,500 angel tree gift tags to provide tbikes and other items to celebrate the holidays. This year’s angel tree tag distribution will take place at noon, Nov. 9 in the Horseshoe. The collection and parade is Dec. 7 and will honor MUSC and Tri-county veterans. Other parade participants include the Patriot Guard Riders, the U.S. Air Force Honor Guard, and floats featuring veterans and Santa.

To Medical Center Employees: Medical center town hall meetings are scheduled from Nov. 7 through Nov. 20 at the times and locations listed below. There will be a number of departmentbased town hall meetings that are not included in the schedule below. You can access the schedule on the intranet at townhall.htm. Town hall agenda topics include: Wins; Joint Commission survey results; HIPAA Privacy update; overview of employee engagement survey action plans; and a discussion concerning our challenging health care environment, including Medicare/Medicaid reimbursement reductions and MUSC’s strategies to respond to the challenges. Everyone is encouraged to attend a town hall meeting. On another matter, at the Nov. 5 communications meeting, Pamela Smith, nurse manager of chest pain center and adult emergency department, asked for everyone’s cooperation to discontinue any inappropriate use of the Patient Transport Elevator (elevator 6) on MUH West. This elevator, referred to as the “trauma elevator,” should be used only for transport of critical patients, patients from the ED to the OR/ICU/inpatient areas, or to transport stroke patients to NIR. Staff members are asked to refrain from overriding the emergency call system when activated. Security has been asked to provide badge access reports. Everyone’s cooperation will ensure for the best and safe care of our patients. Thank you. W. Stuart Smith Vice President for Clinical Operations and Executive Director, MUSC Medical Center Town Hall Meetings: Nov. 9, 9 a.m., Ashley River Tower Auditorium (ART); Nov. 12, 11 a.m., 2West Amphitheater, and noon, ART Auditorium; Nov. 13, 10 a.m., 2West Amphitheater; Nov. 14, 11 a.m., Institute of Psychiatry Auditorium; Nov. 15, noon and 6:30 p.m., ART Auditorium; Nov. 16, 7:30 a.m. and 10 a.m., 2West Amphitheater; and Nov. 20, 7:30 a.m., ART Auditorium

excellence in action Orthopaedic Surgery’s Dr. Bart Sachs gives a thumbs up to the chicken Tim Harrison brought to share with STICU staff. Harrison’s son, TJ, back center, was treated by Sachs and the staff of STICU. “Dr. Sachs, Tyrone and the entire staff of STICU took such great care of TJ we had to share our famous chicken with them,” Harrison said. The Harrison’s also made a banner, “TJ’s Golden Chicken Leg Award.”

The CATAlysT, November 9, 2012 5

employee Wellness q Zumba at Harborview Office Tower: Join licensed Zumba instructor Felecia Curry for a weekly Wednesday night Zumba class from 5 to 6 p.m., Room 910, Harborview Office Tower. Zumba is a dance-based aerobic exercise class and Curry tailors the workout to accommodate any fitness level. Space is limited. Email or call 822-6136 for information or to register. q Flu shot satellite clinic: Employees may get a flu shot from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 14, in the Children’s Hospital lobby. For faster service bring a completed influenza consent form, found in My Records. q Worksite screening: The next worksite screening will be Nov. 15, in Room 628H, Clinical Sciences Building. Visit and click on worksite screening appointment to register. q Fitness series: A free Pilates and yoga class will be held from 12:15 to 12:45 p.m., Nov. 21 at the MUSC Wellness Center. Email to register. A free day-pass to the Wellness Center will be provided for all participants.

Pharmacy students win skills competition By Ashley BArker Public Relations The S.C. College of Pharmacy team of Maryjoy Lepak (USC) and Marley Linder (MUSC) was the first combinedcampus team to compete and win at the S.C. Society of Health-System Pharmacists’ clinical skills competition on Oct. 25 in Columbia. Student teams were asked to develop a plan to treat a child’s medical problems based on a provided scenario. Three other teams from MUSC also participated and finished in the top four: Jacqueline Pratt and Kaitlyn Turner, Rachael Lanier and Carrie Alderman, and Caroline

Griggs and Sarah Glaholt. Each winning team member received a $500 cash award, along with individual first-place trophies and a large team trophy to bring back to the school. The national competition will be held Dec. 1 – 2 at the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists’ mid-year clinical meeting in Las Vegas. Student pharmacists from MUSC have performed well in the national competition in the past. Winners from MUSC include: Julie Long and Karen Hembree Spry in 2006 and Aubrey Cartwright and Kelli Davis in 2001.

q Farmers markets: Fresh fruits and vegetables are available from local farmers on Wednesday at Ashley River Tower, and Friday from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Horseshoe and the area next to Ashley River Tower. MUSC Urban Farm q Work & Learn: A work and learn session will be held from noon to 1 p.m., Nov. 13 at the Urban Farm. The session will include crops and soil testing. Take home some fresh produce in return for work efforts on the farm. Bring water and sunscreen, and wear closed toe shoes. Email to register. The event is open to everyone. q Early bird maintenance: Participants interested in assisting in maintaining the garden may help from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m., Nov. 13 and 14. Contact Susan Johnson, Ph.D., at johnsusa@musc. edu for information on the Office of Health Promotion at MUSC and Suzan Benenson Whelan at whela@ for specific information about Employee Wellness. Events, speakers, classes or any other ideas are welcome. Like our Facebook page and keep up with the wellness events at MUSC.

6 The CATAlysT, November 9, 2012

MUSC employees also serve in military capacity The Veterans Day Celebration E ach day MUSC employees are valued for their efforts and contributions in the education of health care professionals and providing patient care. MUSC employees and students also share an important dual role as citizen-soldiers working with National Guard, active duty or reserve troops.

emPloyeeS, Staff Jason Abbott, Efren Almonte, Thomas Daniel Altman, Juan Anavitate, Teresa Anderson, Thomas Anderson, Richard Anderson, Michael Andrews, Melanie Archer, Lucy Arnold, James R. Atkins, Rosebelinda Augustus, Durwood Bach, Kenneth Bachewicz, Patrick Baker, Steve Baker, Tod Baldovin, David Ball, John Ballard Jr., Larry Banks, Andrew Barrett, J. Mark Barry, Marilyn Beal, Carlson Beeman, Barbara Bell, Ronald Bell, Greg Bellamy, Rebecca Benesh, Dionne Bennett, Frederick Bennett, Connie Best, Robert Bethea, Robert J. Black, J. Herman Blake, Ted Blevins, LaRonda, Boddie, Wallace Bonaparte, Nicole Boofer, John Boolen, John Bosart, Donna Bouissey, Michael Bouissey, Pamela Bowens, Yvonne Bradley, Hazel Breland, Frank Brescia, Michael Briggs, Mary Brigman, Robert Bristow, Robert Britt, Jeffrey Brittain, Arthur Brown, Ron Brown, Christopher Brown, Jay D. Brown, Keith Browning, Stephanie Brown-Guion, W. Brzezinski, Alfred Bryant, Scott Burroughs, Timothy Bussey, Melvin Butler, James Cage, David Callahan, Burgess Canty, Joseph Cantey, James Carter, Tonia Carter, Tamara Cawthorn, Bruce Chambers, Rudolph Chapman, Jerimaine Chatman, Edward W. Cheeseman Jr., Robert Chisholm III, Stephanie Chomos, Marsha Cisa, Ted Clark, D. Edward Collins, Jason Collins, Rodney Coons, Samuel Cooper, Mullen Coover Jr., Brandon Couch, Alfred Cox, Fred Crawford Jr., Morris Crockett, Arthur Crumbley, William Crummer, James Cummins, Theresa Cuoco, Casandra Daniels, Robert Davis, Charles Davis Jr., Ray Deas, Sharon DeGrace, Timothy Dermody, Angienita DeVeaux, Christopher DeVeaux, Samuel Deveaux, James DeWitt, Christopher Drake, Anthony Dunbar, Catherine Durham, Raymond Edwards, Michael Brett Ehlert, Andrew Eiseman, Bruce Elliott, Dallas Ellis, Jill Evans, Jo Lynn Evans, Arthur Fayne, Anita Feliciano, Bernard Ferrette, Russell Fickett, Julius Fielding, Cornette Flanning, Dennis Frazier, Geoffrey Freeman, Charles Ferguson, Thomas Fernandez, Nathaniel Fickett, Louis Franz, Melissa Freeland, Gerald Garza, Calvin Gathers Sr., Patricia Gaylor, Stephen Giallombardo, Greg Gischia, Joseph Good Jr., George Goodhue, Emuel Green, Joel Green, Rickey Greene, Susan Greene, Robert Gregowicz, Jennifer Griffin, Tiffany Griles, Kenneth Grismore, Dana Grissom, Richard Gross, David Guarino Jr., David Guarino Sr., James Guest, Brande Guillory,

12:15 – 1 p.m., Nov. 9 Basic Science Building Auditorium MUSC President Dr. Raymond S. Greenberg and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Dr. Mark Sothmann, along with the Veterans Day Task Force invite MUSC employees, students, faculty and staff to the Veterans Day Celebration. Guest Speaker Col. Thomas S. Clark III, USMC Commanding Officer, Naval ROTC, The Citadel MUSC Public Safety Color Guard Video in Celebration of MUSC Veterans Presentation of Lapel Pins to All Veterans Reception to follow in the Basic Science Building lobby John Hales, Bradley Hammond, Jason Haney, Michael Haschker, Joshua Haumschild, Kevin Heis, Jim Hensley, Krisitin Highland, Kenton Holden, Elizabeth Holmes, Jennifer Hooks, Jerome Hopkins, Reedy Hopkins III, Tom Hubbard, Jesse Hudson, Clint Infinger, Gabriel Ingraham, Ronald Ingram, David Ivey, Paul Jacques, James Johnson, Lance Johnson, Laureen Johnson, Teri Johnson, Frederick Jones, LaSonya Jordon, Catherine Klassy, Peter Kobes, Andrew Kraft, Tammy Lamont, Melissa Lampkin, John Lancaster, Lori Langston, John Lazarchick, Brian Leach, David Lee, Richard Leinster, Chris Lengel, Laura Link, Larry Littman, Paul LoCicero, Karla Locklear, Christopher Long, Joseph Losek Jr., Herbert Love, Howard Lucas Jr., KellyLee Lucas, Scott Luedtke, Timothy MacFall, Ceferino Magpantay Jr., Robert Malcolm, Stephen Malley, Robert Mallin, John Malmrose,Lawrence Manaker, Barry Mathis, Tommy Maw, Mark W. McCaslin, Catherine McClure, Augustas McConnell, Shareen McCoy, Allen McCreary, Clifton L. McDonald Sr., Davis McDougald, Terry McFall, Gerald McKee, George McLauchlan, Mary Ellen McNeal, Justin McNealy, Karen Menendez, John Metcalf, Arnie Metz, Theodore Middleton, Christine Miley, Terri Mizner, Lawrence Mohr, Ivan Molano, Rebecca Moore, Tonnia Mullen, Kelly Mullen, Angela Mund, Steve Naert, Albert Nance, William Neece, David Neff, Melody Nelson, Robert Neuner, Pam Nevill, Don Newburn, Nash Newsome, Shawn Nimons, Thomas Noble, Jackie Nolen, Matthew J. Nutaitis, Jeffery Osmer, Henry Othersen Jr., Kibbie Otruba, Kelly Pate, Steve Paterniti, Roger Peebles Jr., Monica Peeples, Charles Pegram, Robert Peiffer, Ishmael Pendergrass Jr., David Penick, Gregory Perron, Harley Perry, Rosalyn Peterson-

Hale, Pamela Polite, Clayton Polite, Cassandra Poole, Evan Pusillo, Carl Queener, Mansle Raines Jr., Carlos Ramirez, Jon Rampton, Steven Ratliff, James Ravenel, Archie Reid, Rie Reid, William Rentz, Jonn Rhoton, Beth Rhoton, Stacey Ribble, John Richardson, Amanda Ritsema, David Rivers, Tyrone Rivers, Quantella RiversBradley, Jacob Robison, James Roche, Jose Rodriguez, Phyllis Ross, George Rossi, Roger Rowell, Timothy Roylance, John Runyon, Robert Sade, Lynn Sandahl, Robert Sarrica, Stephen Schaer, Christine Schaub, Bradley Schulte, Wade Seigler, John Bayne Selby Jr., Donnalynne Selvyn, Leanne Shattuck, Warren Sholl, Rodney Schlosser, Shenikqua Simmons, Cephus Simmons Sr., Desha Simpson, Julie Singleton, Christine Skope, Sabra Slaughter, DeBorah Smalls-Brown, Bryan Smith, Caroline Smith, John D. Smith Jr., Sally Smith, Shawanda Smith, David Smith, Sanford Solomon, David Soper, Ed Sookikian, William Southgate, Charles Stevens, Robert Stickney, Russell Stillwagon, Shanita Strickland, Elena Sullivan, Chris Summers, Michael Swindle, Jeffrey Taylor, Anthony Thomas, Joseph Thompson Jr., Vernell Threat, Lori Tisdale, Edwin Tufts, Peter Van Dorsten, Mark Van Horn, Karen van Maanen, Michael Vanderhurst, Kenneth Vanek, C. Shaun Wagner, John Walton, Carl Wanamaker, Linda Washington, Marion Watson, Matthew Weas, Edgar Weiss, Thomas Weslager, Scot Wetzig, Olivia Whitehurst, Floyd Whittington, George Whitton Sr., Mark Wilberding, Raymond Williams, Melvin Williams, Kevin Williams, Ruthel Williams, Edward Wilson and Andrew Young.

StudentS Juanetta J. Acevedo, Edward W. Agbevey, Kelly Ameduri, Paul O. Begnoche, Blake W. Bennett, Charles W. Bergman, Daniel L. Brinton, Merritt M. Brockman, Raymond C. Brown, Alexandra D. Butler, Ashley R. Cemper, William D. Cook, Jane R. Cowan, Jennifer A. Creech, Pamela Dean, Daniel Brinton, Naomi B. Griffin, Calvin Grubbs, Steven C. Hayes, Shannon J. Heiling, Todd E. Hixson, Ernest C. Hood, Lamar C. Hood, Jacob T. Hurley, Michael P. Jacobbe, Elizabeth A. Jensen, Roxanne M. Johnson, Walter R. Kirby, Jason A. Kopp, Yianne G. Kritzas, Joshua A. Larsen, Lori A. Lee, Glen N. Lilly, Adam L. Luckey, Trevy Martin, Derek H. Martindale, Steffany M. Mattson, Ashley S. Maybin, Richard McKinney, Lane S. Nelson, John S. Pearson Jr., Michael G. Petrides, Britney M. Rodgers, Kristoffer N. Rodriguez, Kristin L. Sheehan, Bethany L. Shively, Eugene J. Sibal, Rodmond L Singleton, Leonor Spahr, Angela Y. Stanley, Jimmie H. Toler Jr., Tiffany R. Vanmaanen, Michael J. Wagner, James R. Walker, Katherine A. West, Amy B. Wilkerson, Michelle L. Wilkins, James B. Wright Jr.,and Shaquinta D. Wright.

The Catalyst, November 9, 2012 7

meet Julio

Ocular trauma surgeon translates expertise beyond battlefield By Cindy ABole Public Relations

Julio Chalela, M.D. Department Neurosciences How long at MUSC 7 1/2 years How are you changing what’s possible at MUSC By implementing a multidisciplinary process for rounding in the ICU centered around the critical care nurse Military rank Major. Brigade Surgeon 415th Chemical Brigade, Greenville. Where are you currently stationed Camp Bondsteel, Kosovo. I will return in January. First thing you’ll do when you return Hug my wife, Susan, and son, Nico! How does being in the military help in your MUSC career The Army fosters leadership skills that are useful in any job, it also promotes resilience, physical fitness, sense of duty and loyalty. Just like caring for patients is a privilege, so is wearing the U.S. Army uniform. Last book read “No Easy Day,” by Mark Owen. It’s the story of the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden.

Three months ago, ophthalmologist Andrew Eiseman’s days were full and his weeks were long while working as an oculoplastic surgeon. He performed complex eye reconstruction procedures for injured soldiers evacuated from battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan. He also provided sight-saving consults to medical teams in field hospitals and remote facilities thousands of miles away using the most modern telemedicine techniques to support telesurgery and other technologies. For 15 years, Eiseman was chief of the ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery services at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., providing care to soldiers Marines, sailors and airman. For his final year, he was the chief of the newly formed ophthalmology service at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., after Walter Reed and Bethesda Naval Hospital combined facilities in 2011. Today, Eiseman has learned to translate his knowledge and trauma care experience to improving the eye health of his civilian patients at Storm Eye Institute (SEI). A decorated career military man, Eiseman retired from the U.S. Army as a colonel in October after 26 26 years of active duty service and became an associate professor of ophthalmology at MUSC in September. For Eiseman, his retirement and move to South Carolina is a homecoming of sorts. Earlier in his career, Eiseman and his family were stationed in Augusta, Ga. and enjoyed their time in the South. When he began planning for the second stage of his career, Eiseman considered the challenge of establishing a private specialty practice, but saw the opportunities at MUSC and SEI. “I’m very proud to be here and to have the chance to share my expertise with patients and staff at Storm Eye. I feel comfortable taking care of patients from throughout the state for ocular trauma care due to injury but also provide other reconstructive and cosmetic surgeries as well,” said Eiseman, who is a 1986 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy in West Point. He went on to earn his medical degree in the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in 1990 and later completed a fellowship in ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery at the Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia. At Walter Reed, Eiseman was prepared to conduct the most complex repairs and ophthalmologic reconstructions that would often involve the collaboration of neurosurgeons, otolaryngologists and other specialists. At SEI, he may not treat patients for

Storm Eye Institute’s Dr. Andrew Eiseman is an oculoplastic surgeon who will help expand MUSC’s Ocular Surgical Service. injuries from bomb blasts, but he is prepared to care for patients suffering from other trauma that affects the eye. In addition to trauma, Eiseman can provide people with eyelid repairs after tumor removal, brow and lid

See TrAumA on page 10

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Employee named state’s first RWJ Foundation winner By Ashley BArker Public Relations


n January, Debbie Bryant, DNP, R.N., didn’t think she had even a small chance at winning the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Community Health Leaders Award. She was nominated by Leonard David, DDS, chair of Hollings Cancer Center disparities board, and went on with her everyday life as the assistant director of cancer prevention, control and outreach at the cancer center. In March she was asked to fill out a more complete application. In early June, she was informed that she advanced to round three of the process and officials from the foundation would be making a site visit to MUSC in late June. That’s when the award suddenly became attainable. One Friday in August, while Bryant was sitting at her desk on the phone, an email popped up on the screen. The simple word “congratulations” said it all. “I was like, ‘Oh my God, I won!’” she said. “A few people heard me screaming, and they came down. It was pretty phenomenal.” She was one of 10 leaders to receive the Robert Wood Johnson award, which includes a $105,000 grant to support a defined project at MUSC that Bryant comes up with and a $20,000 grant for her to use for

Dr. Debbie Bryant, R.N., bottom row, far left, was one of 10 leaders to receive the 2012 Robert Wood Johnson award. She met the other nine winners at an awards ceremony in San Antonio. Bryant is the first South Carolinian to receive the award. personal development. The award has “recognized leaders who work in their neighborhoods and communities to address some of the nation’s most intractable health care problems” since 1993, according to the foundation’s website.

Bryant, the first South Carolinian to receive the award, was honored for several outreach services that she helped establish for the Lowcountry’s poor

See Winner on page 10

The CATAlysT, November 9, 2012 9

Captain earned dolphins insignia before joining MUSC By Gerry le Public Relations


etired U.S. Navy Supply Corps Capt. Robert H. Peiffer, administrative manager in the MUSC Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, followed the traditional military way of life. He grew up in a military household — his father served in the Army for most of his childhood — and knew there was never a question that he’d follow in his father’s footsteps. Initially, Peiffer joined the Navy in 1965 because, he said, it offered the best college program. His intention was to go to college on a Navy scholarship, graduate and serve his four-year commitment before becoming a foreign service officer with the State Department. At the time, he would have preferred to go to Harvard or Yale, but the Navy chose Miami University in Ohio. “It was one of the best things that could have happened to me,” said Peiffer. “My experience at Miami University was absolutely superb.”

At the end of his four-year service, rather than go into the foreign service, he opted to stay in the Navy. Peiffer retired in 1991, after 26 years in the service. “I realized it wasn’t a bad career choice,” he said. During his time in the Navy, Peiffer traveled to the ends of the earth. He worked in various submarines on the West Coast. He also spent four years in Hawaii and two years in the Philippines before arriving in Charleston. While in the service, Peiffer said that one of his proudest moments was getting through the rigorous training to be qualified in submarine work. That is where he earned his submarine warfare insignia, known as dolphins. Subsequently, he transferred to the Navy Supply Corps where he was involved in handling finances and purchasing and advanced to the rank of captain. In his final Navy assignment, he was named commanding officer of the Naval Supply Center in Charleston. What he misses most about military life is all of the sightseeing, he said.

Bob Peiffer, right, who joined MUSC in 1998, with Nancy White and Anthony Scott. To watch the video, visit “I worked with wonderful people in the Navy,” said Peiffer. “But I also work with wonderful people here at MUSC. I ended up exactly where I was supposed to.” Peiffer lives in Charleston with his wife of 20 years. For this Veterans Day, Peiffer hopes that citizens will

give military officials the gratitude they deserve. “Veterans Day is an opportunity to tell our veterans we appreciate what they’re doing. My son-in-law just got back from a tour in Afghanistan. I know I wouldn’t trade places with them, so I appreciate what they’re doing.”

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Air ForCe Continued from Page One

TrAumA Continued from Page Seven lifts, wrinkle reduction using Botox and chemical peels. “SEI provides a full spectrum of ophthalmic plastic surgery from reconstruction and cosmetic needs. Our Ocular Surgical Service is prepared to care for patients and their needs throughout the span of their lifetime,” Eiseman said. Although Eiseman was never deployed to the war front, his ocular surgical knowledge and trauma experience were best served closer to home. According to Eiseman, about 85 percent of all injured soldiers stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan are medically evacuated to Walter Reed hospital. The military’s evacuation chain for injured soldiers triaged them first for emergency surgery in Iraq or Afghanistan before being transported to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany. Next, patients would be sent for further medical treatment at either Walter Reed or Brooke Army Medical Center in Houston, Texas. According to Eiseman, the percentage of ocular injuries sustained by U.S. soldiers in combat has risen sharply compared to total war injuries.

Army Col. Andrew Eiseman with wife Amy, and daughter 2nd Lt. Allison. The Eisemans also have a son, Mark. During the Gulf War, ocular injuries accounted for 13 percent of total injuries compared to Vietnam (7 percent) and World War II (2 percent). In addition to providing ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery and treatment of complex orbital diseases, Eiseman will continue his research interests in lacrimal drainage system abnormalities, ocular trauma and telemedicine evaluation of eyelid lesions. He also is primary instructor of SEI’s ophthalmology residents in oculoplastics and orbital disease management.

Winner Continued from Page Eight population since joining Hollings Cancer Center in 2005. They include a voucher system that helps uninsured patients afford follow-up cancer care, a cancer mobile screening unit that provides care in areas with limited access, and a lay-navigators program that connects trained professionals from a similar background to patients for peer counseling. “For me, my work was really about access to care,” she said. “At the end of the road, we’re trying to ensure that

Hooks led the coordination, logistics and repackaging of several C-17 Globemaster cargo planes, which were scheduled to carry food, supplies, emergency equipment and additional people to Afghanistan. “The project we focused on could accurately measure space within a plane and reconfigure a plan that would logistically work,” she said. She continued to use the Lean Six Sigma strategies throughout her work as superintendent of the 305th Medical Group and 87th Medical Group. At MUSC, Hooks trains and guides managers to understand and benefit from the Lean Six Sigma methodology in both the hospital and university departments. Her six-member team is able to visit a location and evaluate the work, methods and processes to make areas more efficient. “We strive to help people realize that some change is good,” she said. Chris Rees, director of Quality and Patient Safety for the medical center, is proud to have Hooks on his team. “Jennifer’s presence and work is helping to push some important concepts across MUSC. Her knowledge,

cancer is diagnosed and treated early.” On Oct. 17, Bryant was invited to San Antonio for a ceremony to meet her fellow 2012 winners and an annual conference of more than 200 other Robert Wood Johnson awardees from the past. “I felt very special. It was a phenomenal experience, really, truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” she said. Back at MUSC now, Bryant is working on a concept for the award-funded project and continuing to find ways to do what the foundation emphasizes. “When you’re here every day, you’re just doing your work. You’re just trying to make the ball move. You

training and understanding of key process-improvement concepts is an important part of our goals to meet the clinical enterprise’s health strategic plans. She’s a natural leader who’s approachable, communicative, and dependable and a stabilizing force in an area that affects change,” Rees said. When asked what she misses most about military life, Hooks is quick to share her answers. “Travel and how many lives I’ve been able to touch, especially in humanitarian assignments,” she said. Hooks was involved in many missions, from providing support to accommodate Haitian evacuees following the 2010 earthquake to supporting community projects in Anchorage, Alaska. She coordinated medical screenings and provided legal, housing and employment assistance to veterans. Those projects results in Hooks being named 3dWing and Team Elmendorf 2003 Senior NCO of the Year at Elmendorf AFB. She also assisted in the 9/11 investigation identifying Pentagon crash victims using forensic dentistry. Hooks and her husband, Rod, a disabled Air Force veteran, strive to maintain a grounded family life for their children, Jazmin and Jalen.

work hard to get it pushed in one direction or the other,” she said. “But you don’t really feel extraordinary. I didn’t know that anyone would feel that I was that great. It’s not that folks don’t tell you that you’re doing a great job here. I’m just one of many doing what needs to be done.” A reception will be held at the Hollings Cancer Center Nov. 19 to celebrate Bryant’s award with the MUSC family. For information about the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Community Health Leaders Award, visit

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annual dental day recognized

The James B. Edwards College of Dental Medicine hosted Dental Day Nov. 2 for prospective students. More than 100 students and their college advisors participated in the event. Third- and fourth-year dental students served on a panel to answer questions and talk about dental school life. Left photo: Participants heard from MUSC leadership and dental faculty including CDM diversity director Dr. Gwendolyn Brown, left, who met with students and hosted the program. Students heard presentations from dental faculty, curriculum, the application process, and toured the clinics and lab areas.

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