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WelcomeNIH Director Dr. Harold Varmus (left) welcomed the new Clinical Center Board of Governors, who met for the first time on Oct. 21. "Clinical research is in a period of unusual turmoil and excitement," he said, "and we are making a variety of efforts to try to be sure that the NIH, as an institution dedicated to the improvement of health, is well positioned to take advantage of what science is producing, despite the challenges that result from the change in the way health care is being financed." With him are board chair John Finan, president and chief executive officer of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System in Baton Rouge, and Dr. John Gallin, CC director.
CC News: November 1996
In this issue
Shalala announces new board with CC governance mandate
Board endorses Clinical Center funding plan
Chairman looks at new board's mission
FY97 budget includes funds for new CRC
Projects take a toll on parking
Shalala announces new board with CC governance mandateThe new Clinical Center Board of Governors, assembled to oversee management of the hospital, met here for the first time on Oct. 21.
HHS Secretary Shalala tapped physicians, scientists, and health-care managers from some of the nation's top hospitals and from across the NIH to serve on the newly appointed board.
John J. Finan, Jr., president and chief executive officer of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System in Baton Rouge, will chair the 17-member group.
"The Clinical Center at NIH is the country's premier medical research facility," said Secretary Shalala. "The board's experience and expertise will enhance the hospital's ability to support research that stands to enhance the lives and health of each American."
"The National Institutes of Health depends on the Clinical Center to
provide an efficient, responsive environment for its conduct of clinical
research," added Dr. Harold Varmus, NIH director.
Changing how the 43-year-old, Clinical Center is governed topped the list of improvements for the hospital suggested by a team of reviewers appointed by Secretary Shalala in 1995.
She named Dr. Helen Smits, former deputy administrator of the Health Care Financing Administration, to chair the team that scrutinized how the Clinical Center carries out its business. Dr. Smits serves on the new board.
A major recommendation in the team's report, released in January, included a blueprint for the newly named Board of Governors to draw on the expertise of leaders from outside organizations and from inside NIH.
"The board's role is to bring added value to the great work already being done at NIH and at the Clinical Center," explained Finan, who was a member of that original evaluation team. "The board members have a depth and breadth of experience that will strengthen the systems and processes of the hospital and, ultimately, the ability to support scientific research."
Named to the board from outside the NIH are: Dr. J. Claude Bennett, president of the University of Alabama at Birmingham; William B. Kerr, chief executive officer of the Medical Center at the University of California-San Francisco; Dr. Stephen C. Schimpff, executive vice president of the University of Maryland Medical Center, Baltimore; Dr. Helen L. Smits, president and medical director of HealthRight, Inc., Meriden, Conn.; and Ellen M. Zane, network president of Partners in HealthCare System, Inc., Boston.
Finan, Kerr and Dr. Schimpff had served as external consultants to the Options Team.
Appointed to the board from NIH are: Dr. Patricia A. Grady, NINR director; Dr. Jeffrey M. Hoeg, chief of the cell biology section of the Molecular Diseases Branch, NHLBI; Dr. Carl Kupfer, NEI director; Dr. Griffin P. Rodgers, chief of the molecular hematology section, Laboratory of Chemical Biology, and Dr. Allen M. Spiegel, scientific director, NIDDK; Dr. Susan Swedo, acting scientific director, NIMH; and Dr. Robert Wittes, director of NCI's Division of Cancer Treatment, Diagnosis, and Centers.
Drs. Grady, Hoeg, and Rodgers had been members of the Options Team.
Four positions on the board remain to be filled.
"We are privileged to have such a distinguished group of advisors to help us chart the future course of change necessary for the Clinical Center to continue its tradition as a center of excellence in clinical research," said Dr. John I. Gallin, CC director.
He and Dr. Lynnette K. Nieman, chairman of the Medical Executive Committee, will serve as ex officio members of the board. (by Sara Byars)
Dr. John Gallin, CC director (right), offered external board members a tour of the Clinical Center before the group met for their first session last month.
Board endorses Clinical Center funding plan
The Clinical Center's newly constituted Board of Governors addressed some historic and thorny hospital budget issues during their first meeting on Oct. 21.
Dr. John Gallin, CC director, presented and the board endorsed a budget assessment plan designed to give the Clinical Center a stable, three-year foundation of funding based on how much clinical research each institute typically conducts and the institutes' plans for future programs. The plan addresses a major recommendation from last year's Options Team that the CC has its own budget that is no less stable than the rest of the NIH intramural programs.
Under the plan, 80 percent of each institute's intramural clinical research budget will be earmarked for the hospital's fixed costs, such as nursing staff, pharmacy services, and supplies. The Board of Governors and the NIH director will review this assessment annually. Twenty percent will be applied to variable costs-money needed to pay for special aspects of specific protocols, for example. This portion of the assessment will be adjusted each year, based on the institutes' plans and prior year's use.
Institutes may appeal the assessments directly to the NIH director or the board, an option Dr. Gallin termed "essential."
Having an envelope of funding to work with will help the Clinical Center develop ways to carry out its business more efficiently, Dr. Gallin said. Those savings will go into a common pool and may be reinvested in clinical research initiatives the following year. If an institute cancels a projected program, it has first crack at applying the already-committed money to its other programs. If they don't do that, the money will go into a common pool that the other institutes may compete for.
"The institute directors agreed in October that we would have a three-year trial of this proposal, which began in FY96," Dr. Gallin said.
"The process will make the institutes' assessments more predictable because they will know what they're going to be committed to well in advance. The proposal will be evaluated after the three-year pilot."
Dr. Harold Varmus, NIH director, underscored the importance of fiscal responsibility in the conduct of clinical research in his welcoming remarks to the board.
"Clinical research is in a period of unusual turmoil and excitement,"
he said, "and we are making a variety of efforts to try to be sure
that the NIH, as an institution dedicated to the improvement of health,
is well positioned to take advantage of what science is producing, despite
the challenges that result from the change in the way health care is being
financed. We've reached a time in the study of human biology when the fruits
of molecular biology, genetics, cell biology, and other disciplines have
the potential for making a tremendous impact upon prevention and treatment
of disease. At the same time we have revolutionary changes in the provision
of health care, which is changing the way medicine is practiced [and] the
way it's financed." (by Sara Byars)
John J. Finan, Jr., (seated left) presided over the Board of Governor's first meeting here last month. With him is Dr. John Gallin, CC director.
Chairman looks at new board's mission
John J. Finan, Jr., president and chief executive officer of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System in Baton Rouge, La., has been named chairman of the Clinical Center's Board of Governors made up of physicians, scientists, and managers from some of the nation's top hospitals and from across the NIH.
Finan had chaired the committee of external experts that worked hand-in-hand with last year's Options Team assembled by HHS Secretary Shalala.
The group's mission? To find ways to improve efficiency at the CC without compromising the quality of patient care and clinical research.
Before taking his current position last July, Finan was senior executive officer for alternate site services of the BJC Health System in St. Louis. There he was responsible for system-wide program development and operations relating to ambulatory care; senior service, including home health, hospice, and long-term care; occupational medicine; ground and air transportation; community health; and physician services.
He was president and senior executive officer of the health system's Barnes Hospital from 1992-1996. The 1,208-bed hospital serves as the major teaching affiliate for the Washington University School of Medicine. Finan joined Barnes as a vice president in 1984 and later served as chief operating officer.
Finan holds a B.S. in economics from Louisiana State University at New Orleans and an M.B.A. from Loyola University of the South. He is a fellow in the American College of Health Care Executives and serves as preceptor for a number of health-care executive graduate programs, with a faculty appointment at Washington University School of Medicine health administration program.
Before the board convened for their first meeting on Oct. 21, Finan spoke to CCNews about the group's work ahead.
What do you see as the board's primary mission in the long term?
What is first on the board's agenda?
The Options Team has performed a thorough review of the organization and there are specific objectives and action plans contained in the Options Team report. All of this provides an inventory of information to quickly learn the Clinical Center's organization, mission, the challenges, and the opportunities.
What do you see as the board's biggest challenge?
What will the board's combination of experience and expertise bring to
the Clinical Center?
FY97 budget includes funds for new CRC
The Option Team's report also recommended a new facility for the hospital and research laboratories. The centerpiece of NIH's 1997 budget is the $90 million down payment on a Clinical Research Center (CRC), which according to the new budget law, will bear the name Mark O. Hatfield Clinical Research Center, in honor of the retiring Republican Senator from Oregon who has chaired the Senate Appropriations Committee and has been a medical research supporter in the Senate since 1967.
CRC construction carries a $310 million price tag, with funding phases spread
over several years, and is slated to begin in this fiscal year. The current
budget signed into law by President Clinton contains precise language allowing
NIH to contract for the full scope of the new project even though future
year appropriations will be needed to complete funding.
Projects take a toll on parking
Some say an NIH parking sticker is a license to hunt, a parking spot, that is. Brace yourself. The hunt will soon present a greater challenge, as parking spaces join the endangered species list.
Repairs to the CC garage, expansion of the underground utility tunnel system, construction for a new clinical research facility, and a new fire station will cost almost 1,300 parking spaces over the next several years. Some of those parking spaces will be gone forever.
Here's the math, according to the NIH Transportation Management Plan. There are 9,000 spaces on campus for 15,800 employees. That's about half a parking space for each employee. Well, for each .57 employee, to be precise. And that exceeds the maximum allowable parking ratio for federal installations, which is exactly half a space per person. That puts us over the limit by about 1,100 spaces. The National Capital Planning Commission and the Montgomery County Planning Board have repeatedly asked that NIH reduce its parking "excess" to conform with federally mandated limits. The commitment to reduce excess parking was incorporated into the NIH Master Plan as a condition of approval by the reviewing agencies.
When building projects begin, expect construction workers to snap up the nearby spaces such as those along Cedar Lane.
"When all the construction is under way, if will be extremely difficult to find parking on campus after 7:30 a.m.," predicts Stella Serras-Fiotes, master planner in the DES facilities planning and programming branch. "That's why we're working hard to let employees know about alternate parking and transportation plans."
Here's what is in the works and what the parking toll will be:
There are alternatives, parking officials note. Parking lots 41A, B, and C and temporary lot T1 at the south end of the campus are rarely full and regular campus shuttle service is provided.
The NIH Office of Research Resources leases 130 parking spaces in Garage
57 in Bethesda and up to 150 NIH cars can park at Mid-Pike Plaza on Rockville
Pike at Montrose Road. You can shuttle to those lots, too. Another 150 spaces
at the Shady Grove Station and 25 at the New Carrollton station are earmarked
for NIHers who can park free and ride Metro.
Dr. David Stroncek has been named chief of the laboratory services section in the Transfusion Medicine Department. Dr. Stroncek, whose research interests include granulocyte serology, granulocyte transfusion, and preparation of components for stem-cell therapy, had been medical director for the blood bank at the University of Minnesota Hospital and Clinic in Minneapolis. He also served as medical director for the American Red Cross, St. Paul Regional Blood Services, and as associate professor of medicine and pathology at the University of Minnesota.
Dr. Christine Grady, assistant director for clinical science and acting chief of the clinical therapeutics lab, NINR, has been named nurse consultant for the CC Department for Clinical Bioethics. She will also serve as the department's acting chief, according to Dr. John Gallin, CC director.Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, an oncologist from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute at Harvard, has been named director of that department and will move into the position full-time in 1997. Dr. Grady, whose doctorate is in philosophy and bioethics, is a clinical scholar at the Center for Clinical Bioethics at Georgetown University Medical Center and co-director of an interdisciplinary bioethics course for medical and nursing students.
Dr. Larry Green, Pharmacy Department deputy chief, has accepted
a position as manager of professional services with the Amgen Corporation
in Thousand Oaks, Calif. He'll be working with their clinical grants team
to develop phase IV clinical research studies in hematology and oncology.
Dr. Green had been at the Clinical Center for six years. Before accepting
his post here, he was at Johns Hopkins Hospital.
Puff the Tragic Dragon and Harriett Healthy Heart had starring roles in a skit for children presented during National Respiratory Care Week in October by respiratory therapists from the Critical Care Medicine Department's critical care therapy section. In addition to performances at the NIH child care center (above), the troupe appeared at Seven Locks and Wood Acres Elementary Schools. They offered a light-hearted and creative look at the consequences of unhealthy health habits.
CC patient Brian Scholl and Molly, a Caring Canine who visits regularly as part of the National Capital Therapy Dogs, Inc., get ready for a film crew from PBS's acclaimed Nature series. Molly and her pal Scooter, both King Charles spaniels, will be featured in a show slated to air in March.
Representatives from the design team for the new Clinical Research Center will be back at the CC Nov. 12-22 to continue interviews with department members, patients, and patient families about what they'll need in the new facility and features they'd like incorporated. At a meeting in the Department of Transfusion Medicine, led by Dr. Harvey Klein (at the table's head), department chief, were (from right) Vinod Misra, the Burlington Group, Inc.; David Esch, assistant project manager for Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership, the project's design firm; and NBBJ hospital architects Stewart Charles and James Brinkley.
Project affects cafeteria hours
The second-floor cafeteria is closed so that the CC Nutrition Department can use the kitchen while their own is undergoing repairs.
During the project, hours for the cafeteria on B1 will be 6 a.m.- 11 p.m. on weekends. It will close at 11 p.m. on weekdays.
Date for town meeting changed
The date for the Clinical Center's town meeting has been changed to Dec. 3. It will be conducted from 1-2 p.m. in Masur Auditorium.
Study needs volunteers over 18
NIDDK seeks individuals 18 years and older with sickle cell disease. The treatment studies will include administration of medication, which may prevent red-blood cells from sickling and reduce other complications from the disease. For more information, call Beth Link at 402-3087.
Bazaar, auction benefit CC patients
The Friends of the Clinical Center's fifth annual holiday bazaar is set for Dec. 5 in the VIC. Stop by between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. for jewelry, crafts, wreaths, toys, quilts, music boxes and other items. The event benefits the Friends of the Clinical Center.
Clinical Pathology's annual holiday auction, which is a benefit for the Patient Emergency Fund and FOCC, will be Dec. 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., in room 2C310. To donate baked goods, crafts. or household items, call Norma Ruschell or Khanh Nghiem at 496-4473.
Call the education and training section at 496-1618 for details on these and other classes:
CFC campaign continues in Nov.
The Clinical Center's Combined Federal Campaign-CFC-continues this month. Departmental key workers are available to answer questions about participating in this year's campaign.
"Our Clinical Center co-workers have taken to heart the campaign's slogan, 'Help Hope Take Shape,'" notes Warren Moyer, assistant campaign coordinator.
"Participation has been phenomenal, reflecting that CC staff recognize the need to support the noteworthy charities participating in the CFC."
New lab raised
Workers are wrapping up construction of the new, 3,000-square-foot Cell Processing Lab. The facility is result of a cooperative research and development agreement-CRADA-
between the CC Department of Transfusion Medicine and Baxter Healthcare Corporation. Last January, contractors literally raised the roof over transfusion medicine and the operating rooms to accommodate a third floor to house the lab. Expected to be up and running early next year, the lab will be used to modify and treat cells for CC patients.
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Warren Grant Magnuson Clinical Center (CC)
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
Last modified 11/21/96