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past issues

Clinical Center News

 Published monthly for CC employees by Clinical Center Communications

August 1999

Gormley named chief

Staff articles noticed

FamilyFriend Program

Swing! Salsa! Merengue!

Nursing news

Pharmacy staff honored

CC factoid

News briefs


 Construction workers building the new CC research facility warm up before their day  

Construction Calisthenics

Building something as large and complex as the new Clinical Research Center can be hard on the body. So, every day before embarking on their long hours of construction activity, workers stretch for 10 minutes to warm up muscles, and listen to a 5-minute safety message.

Chief operating officer appointed

Maureen E. Gormley was recently appointed chief operating officer of the Clinical Center.

"Maureen will serve as my principal advisor on strategic planning, policy development, program formulation, and the overall administrative coordination of the Clinical Center," said CC Director John I. Gallin. Gormley was a special assistant to Dr. Gallin from 1994 to 1997.

Maureen E. Gormley
Gormley joined the Clinical Center Office of the Director in 1987. Over the past 12 years she has held a variety of administrative positions, including oversight of policy and planning functions and coordination of an organizational quality-improvement initiative. Most recently she headed the Office of Administrative Management and Planning. She holds a bachelor's degree in nursing from Boston College and a master's degree in public health from Yale University.
Reflecting on her years here, Gormley said, "The Clinical Center has a special role on the NIH campus, and provides perhaps the biggest connection between NIH and the public. In this regard, we have a big responsibility to uphold.

"One project that I am particularly enthusiastic about is the creation of a new patient hospitality program. We intend to welcome all patients and visitors and treat them like they are guests in our home." (Watch CCNews for details on this new service.)

"We are pursuing many important initiatives in the Clinical Center, all aimed at supporting our threefold mission of quality patient care, excellent clinical research support, and operational efficiency," said Gormley. "My goal as chief operating officer is to constantly foster and implement new ideas that will make us even better."


CC staff articles gain national notice

Several Clinical Center researchers gained national notice last month by publishing thought-provoking papers in two respected medical journals, the "New England Journal of Medicine" (NEJM) and the "Journal of the American Medical Association" (JAMA).

The July 7 JAMA article was written by Diagnostic Radiology Department staffers Dr. Gregory Katzman, Dr. Azar Dagher, and Dr. Nicholas Patronas. The paper, "Incidental Findings on Brain MRI from 1000 Asymptomatic Volunteers," detailed how the researchers studied brain MRI scans from 1000 volunteers who participated in various NIH studies as control subjects between May 1996 and July 1997. All volunteers were deemed healthy and asymptomatic after a medical history and physical examination. While 82 percent of the MRI brain scans were indeed normal, the researchers found that 18 percent (180 scans) showed abnormal results.

Of these, 29 patients were referred for further medical evaluation, and 3 were found to have brain tumors.

"The CC Diagnostic Radiology Department does the imaging for most NIH protocols, including the normal volunteers," said Dr. Dagher. "We saw a unique opportunity to pool a great number of normal-volunteer brain MRI's to study the rate of incidental findings in a normal population."

The Clinical Center's archive of these and other types of scans represents a vast resource for more look-back studies.

"It's conceivable that we could go back through 12 years and maybe get 10,000 normal-volunteer scans," said Dr. Dagher. "That's something no university can claim, unless it pooled resources with several other institutions."

Similar studies had been done elsewhere, but on scans performed on people referred for a clinical concern or symptom. This could increase the likelihood of finding a disease.

"We put less weight on the reported rates in this study, but rather emphasize that the population studied was as close to truly normal as possible, so the findings likely represent true incidental abnormalities," Dr. Dagher explained. "We hope our study will serve as a significant reference for researchers who quote incidences or prevalences of various disease syndromes in normal groups."

The July 15 NEJM editorial, "What's the Price of a Research Subject? Approaches to Payment for Research Participation," is by Neal Dickert and Dr. Christine Grady of the CC Department of Clinical Bioethics.

"Clinical investigators at the CC and elsewhere are struggling with the issue of how and under what circumstances to pay subjects," said Dr. Grady. And some wonder whether research volunteers should be paid at all.

"At the Clinical Center, and elsewhere, healthy volunteers are usually paid. Patient volunteers are increasingly being paid, but not all of them, or always," said Dr. Grady.

The NEJM editorial outlines three possible methods for paying research participants: a market model, a wage-payment model, and a reimbursement model. The authors advocate the wage-payment model as the most ethical of the three. The wage-payment model operates on the belief that participation in research requires little skill, but does require time, effort, and the tolerance of undesirable or uncomfortable procedures. Research subjects should therefore be compensated for their time and effort. The wage referred to could be the minimum wage or another dollar figure.

"It's a matter of thinking about the activity as a type of 'unskilled labor' and deciding on a per-hour compensation that makes sense for that," said Dr. Grady.

The reimbursement model provides payment simply to cover subjects' expenses, such as travel, and meals. According to the authors, this model precludes profit and actually requires financial sacrifice for most participants.

The market model assumes that money is the major incentive for research participation, and therefore subjects would be attracted by large payments and bonuses for study completion.

"Letting the market determine payment is ethically problematic," said Dr. Grady. "It encourages paying more for increased risk, and could drive out important but less well-funded studies."

Despite the controversial nature of the topic, the authors published their opinion for others to consider.

"Payment is already a part of what's going on," Dr. Grady said. "We asked, How can we approach it in a way that's more standardized and ethically acceptable than some of the current practices?"

The editorial notes that the opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of NIH or the Clinical Center.


Family Friend Program kicks off

To better serve patient needs, the Clinical Center has initiated the Family Friend Program, a pilot program designed to support individuals who would like to participate in clinical trials at NIH, but have difficulty due to the lack of child care resources.

Open to children between the ages of 3 and 7, this service may be utilized by patients enrolled in an NIH clinical trial who need child care during their treatment procedure. Services will be provided during the hours of treatment only with a maximum of 10 children at any one time, and will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis.

Patients are encouraged first to exhaust all outside resources for child care. Advance notice is requested, but in the case of an emergency situation, the program will accept children who have not been previously scheduled, space permitting.

Once a need for the service is established, the principal investigator, research nurse, or other designee will refer the patient to the Social Work Department. An assessment will then be conducted and the case will be referred to the director of Volunteer Services. If appropriate, and space permitting, the child will then be approved to participate in the program. Patients will be required to provide an immunization history for each child at the time of registration.

The CC Family Friend Program is located in the 14th floor playroom and is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Patients will be responsible for providing breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner, and bagged meals are encouraged. The staff will provide the children with nutritious snacks and juices throughout the day.

CC volunteers who have had extensive background checks and department child-care training will staff the program.

For more information on this pilot program, contact the Social Work Department at 6-2381, or visit the Family Friend web site (



 Kevin Fox instructs a student during a swing dance class
Kevin Fox instructs Margaret Sarris, of the Social Work Department, on proper dance technique at one of several classes he teaches through
the NIH R&W Association (left). Kevin Fox's dance classes are well attended (right).

 Kevin Fox instructs a student during a swing dance class

Swing! Salsa! Merengue!

One-two, three-four, five-six...

When Kevin Fox, a former LAN administrator for ISD, utters these commands, he's not using the latest computer jargon but rather calling out dance steps for a dozen or so eager students.

The NIH Recreation and Welfare Association offers a variety of programs and activities for NIH employees, their families, contractors and retirees of NIH, as well as the general public. The newest additions are the dance classes taught by Fox.

"The R&W offers a variety of activities but I didn't see anything about partner dancing. So I called them," said Fox. "They said that they were interested in starting a dance program, so we went ahead and planned a demo class."

The demonstration class, held last fall, received an excellent response. Over 100 interested people attended. Since then, Fox estimates that roughly 100 people have participated in the classes, which are held at the Clinical Center and Rockledge Fitness Center.

"Since Kevin has been a part of our program, we have been able to offer more people the opportunity to exercise and keep active," said Julie Nelson, a fitness director with the R&W. "Dancing is pure enjoyment with the benefit of exercise.

"And everyone loves Kevin. It's been great for the R&W fitness program and has definitely helped the program flourish," she added.

Classes provide an opportunity for exercise and fun during lunchtime or after work. The swing class is offered on Wednesdays from noon to 1 p.m. in the 14th floor gym at the CC and then again at Rockledge Fitness Center from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. The salsa and merengue class is offered on Fridays on the same schedule.

"These dance classes are a good mid-day break," said Margaret Sarris, who enjoys the classes. "They give me energy to get through the rest of the day."

During the summer months, the classes are offered on a 4-week basis to help accommodate busy schedules. The R&W handles the registration process, including collecting fees.

Popularity and interest determine the style of dance Fox teaches, and since he is familiar with everything from ballroom to two-step, he is eager to teach different styles depending on people's interest.

"Swing, salsa, and merengue are some of the hotter club dances out now. There are probably a dozen Latin clubs in D.C. alone," he said. "Swing has also enjoyed a real resurgence - everything from the retro-culture and clubs to upbeat swing and big-band music have made comebacks. Also, a lot of recent movies have featured either swing or Latin dancing."

Dance has always been a part of Fox's life. His mother was a dance instructor when he was young and he also studied music performance in college. As an adult, he has been the owner and director of a dance studio, as well as a devoted dance teacher.

"Dancing is a way for me to still be involved with music," said Fox. "I needed to find another teaching venue because it's really something I enjoy doing. Dance was definitely something that I wanted to keep a part of my life."

Fox describes the ability to dance as a tool for self-confidence and social interaction, "whether it's going to a wedding and knowing you don't have to sit out and just watch, or going out to dance for a few hours rather than sit at home and watch a movie," he said.

"I think people primarily take the classes because they hope it's going to be fun, and I think it meets that expectation," he said. "It's easy to continue doing [a physical activity] when you enjoy it."

Fox encourages men as well as women to try one of the classes and learn to dance. According to him, it can be slightly tougher for men to learn how to dance because of the footwork and learning to lead, which can feel like being behind the wheel and not knowing how to drive.
"Sometimes the guys are more hesitant. A few were apprehensive at first, but by the second class,they were fine," said Fox.

Dennis Askwith, a program analyst at NHLBI, is one of the men enrolled in Fox's classes.

"I get a lot of good exercise, and it's a nice break from the stress of the work day," he said.

Anita Honeycutt, who is retired from the CC after working as a nurse here for 18 years, enjoys the benefits of the class.

"Kevin is one of the best dance teachers. He has a way of conveying the new movements that enhances the dance experience," she said. "The classes make me feel good, increase my self-confidence, and help me stay on my diet. I use them as exercise and to relieve stress."

For more information about the dance classes or other R&W programs, call 6-8746, pick up a copy of the R&W newsletter, or visit their website at

-by Bonnie Flock


Nursing news

Neuroscience nurse interns graduate

Neuroscience nurse interns graduate

Certificates of completion were awarded recently to the two nurses comprising the 11th class of the Neuroscience Nurse Internship Program (front row, from left), Sharon Saul, R.N., and Marie Moran, R.N. In the back row (left to right) are Neuroscience Leadership Team members Susan Squires, R.N., Carol Romano, R.N., Ph.D., Audrey Penn, M.D., Beth Price, R.N., Mark Hallett, M.D., and Claudia Briguglio, R.N.

Knebel elected to Academy

The Nursing Department's Ann Knebel, R.N., DNSc., was recently nominated for fellowship in the American Academy of Nursing (FAAN). Knebel was selected by her peers based on her contributions to the profession of nursing that were above and beyond her job description.

Knebel, who has worked at the CC for 8 years, coordinates a research training program for nurse-scientists that has become a standard for the nursing community. She is also a member of the Respiratory Nursing Society and has prepared publications and presentations regarding weaning patients from mechanical ventilation and management of the symptoms of shortness of breath.

"I'm honored to have been selected," Knebel said. "The members of the Academy are people I have always respected and admired for their contributions to nursing."

­by K.C. Gardner

Nurse managers appointed

Sue Johnson, R.N., B.S.N., is the new nurse manager of the Surgical Oncology/Urology Program of Care. Johnson joined the CC Nursing Department in 1979, working on the 10D Medical Intensive Care Unit. She later served as nurse manager on 10D, 11E, 9W, and the 9W day hospital. She holds a bachelor of science degree in nursing from Graceland College, and is currently pursuing a master's degree in business administration at the University of Maryland.

Anita Marban recently joined the CC as the nurse manager for the Neurology Program of Care. She earned her bachelor of science degree in nursing at the University of Florida. She comes to the CC from the V.A. Medical Center in Miami, Fl., and brings 9 years of management experience in the critical care environment.

Hallett honored by nurses

On behalf of the Neuroscience Program of Care nursing staff, Beth Price, R.N., presents a plaque to Dr. Mark Hallett, NINDS clinical director, to commemorate his role as the "founding father" of the Neuroscience Nurse Internship Program. The plaque honored his "vision, inspiration, and unwavering support of the advancement of neuroscience nursing education" and stated that his contributions to the program "have made a profound difference in the lives of our patients and in the careers of our nurses."

 Dr. Mark Hallett honored by nursing staff


Pharmacy staff receive honors in their fields

Barry Goldspiel

Dr. Barry Goldspiel, oncology clinical pharmacy specialist, was recently honored as a distinguished alumnus at the commencement ceremonies for the Arnold and Marie Schwartz College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences of Long Island University.

The College bestowed Dr. Goldspiel with this honor due to his contributions to the advancement of oncology pharmacy practice. He was lauded as an example of a new breed of pharmacist to emerge from the college with a focus on providing pharmaceutical care in specialty practices.

Michelle Eby

Dr. Michelle Eby of the Pharmacy Department recently earned her non-traditional Doctor of Pharmacy and was awarded the Gold Medal of Excellence in her graduating class from the University of Maryland.

Eby, who began working at the CC 10 years ago as a staff pharmacist, worked with pediatric HIV and oncology patients.

She was inspired to go back to school when she discovered the impact pharmacists had in patient care.

"I realized that just by focusing on drug therapy we can enhance therapeutic outcomes and quality of life," said Eby.

The encouragement and guidance of the Pharmacy Department helped her balance working full time with enhancing her career and education.

"They played a very supportive role," Eby said. "I feel I've worked very hard and I feel rewarded."

The Gold Medal of Excellence is the highest academic award the University of Maryland gives. The award cited Eby's excellence in all areas.

-by K.C. Gardner


CC factoid

Did you ever wonder how many patients the Clinical Center cares for in a year? Here are some statistics, courtesy of the Office of Financial Resources Management:

During fiscal year 1998, the Clinical Center had:

  • 70,044 outpatient visits
  • 49,786 inpatient days
  • 6,250 inpatient admissions
  • 9,982 new patient admissions

The number of individual patients, inpatient or outpatient, seen at the CC during fiscal year 1998 was 16,629.


News briefs

Attention off-campus employees

Where can you go between on-campus meetings when there isn't time to shuttle back to the office? The NIH Quality of Work Life Committee invites you to explore the On-Campus Work Center.

Located in Bldg. 31, next to the cafeteria (Rm. 1A1E09), the Center is available to all who need a short-term office. The only requirement is that Center users sign in.

The Center is equipped with a fax/copier machine, six telephones, five workstations, two Macintoshes, three personal computers, and two stations to accommodate individual notebook computers.

Applications available for use include Corel Word Perfect, Microsoft Office Suite, Netscape for Internet/web access, and electronic mail (for those IC's that provide web access to e-mail).

Hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The Committee is exploring the expansion of hours.

For more information about the On-Campus Work Center, visit the web site (
ohrm/qwl/workctr.htm), call 5-1619, or stop by and check it out.


Deputy appointed

David Delgado has been appointed deputy chief of the Office of Facilities Management (OFM).

Delgado joins the CC after working at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. He is a registered professional engineer, who holds a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering and a master's degree in business administration from the University of Texas.

He will provide managerial and engineering support for OFM as it continues to oversee numerous construction projects, including the new Clinical Research Center.
Blood conference

The Clinical Center Department of Transfusion Medicine will host its 18th Annual Symposium on Immunohematology and Blood Transfusion, Sept. 23, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., in Masur Auditorium. Topics include safety of the blood supply, cell processing, and components and processes. There is no registration fee, but advance registration is required by Sept. 3. Register on line at, or call Karen Cipolone at 6-8335 for details.


Hosts needed

The Volunteer Office seeks Bldg.10 labs to host eight Madeira School Senior Co-Curriculum students on Wednesdays from Sept. 22, 1999, to May 18, 2000. Program objectives are to enable students to explore a possible career or college major, to make a substantial contribution to the Washington community, to increase understanding of the requirements for success in the workplace, and gain substantive knowledge in a field of interest, according to the school. Students are transported by van to NIH from the McLean, Va., school. If your lab is interested in hosting a student, contact Andrea Rander
at 6-1807.


Cancer conference

Register now for the NCI All Ireland Cancer Conference, Oct. 3­6 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Speakers include NIH Director Dr. Harold Varmus, NCI Director Dr. Richard Klausner, and Chief of NCI Surgery Branch Dr. Steven Rosenburg. Visit or call 1-888-624-1937 and ask for the NCI All Ireland Cancer Conference for details and registration information.


Volunteers sought

Volunteers are needed for these and other studies. Call the Patient Recruitment and Public Liaison Office at 1-800-411-1222 for details.

Allergic Asthma. NIAID doctors seek people ages 12­85 who have asthma symptoms at least 3 times a week (wheezing, chest tightness, cough, night asthma) for a research study of a new investigational asthma medication. Compensation provided.

Reproduction. NICHD scientists seek healthy women to take part in a research study of normal female reproduction. You may be eligible to take part if you are under 35, use no birth control pills or other hormones, have normal menstrual cycles, and have no history of fibroids, infertility, or endometriosis. The research team will explain all study details, risks, and potential benefits. Requires two short visits. Compensation provided.


Classes offered

Call the Education and Training Section of OHRM at 6-1618 to register for the following courses offered in August:

Child Care Options: An Educated Decision, Aug. 11, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Child Care Consultants, Inc., will discuss available options, what to look for in a licensed and unlicensed facility, how to interview and what to expect in a provider, and legal issues related to care and screening.

Personal Financial Management, Aug. 26, from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Frederic Petze, personal financial manager, presents a basic vocabulary of financial terms and principles, how to check your Social Security benefits, how to develp a financial management plan, how to accumulate wealth by having two savings programs, how to manage credit, what a credit report is, and how to fix a credit problem.


Register now

The Principles of Clinical Pharmacology Course begins Sept. 2. The course will be held Thursdays from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. in Lipsett Amphitheater, and runs through April 27, 2000. Registration is free and open to all interested persons. For more information, consult the course web site (


Revised web site

The answer to your personnel question may be just a click away at

The Clinical Center's Office of Human Resources Management (OHRM) has redesigned its web site. Visit this site as a first stop for information on CC employment, benefits, pay, training, performance management, awards, employee relations, labor relations, and many other topics. OHRM is committed to bringing CC employees, supervisors, and administrative staff the most up-to-date human resources information available on the web.

Your feedback is important. If you have comments about the site or can't find what you're looking for, please send e-mail to:


Slogan contest

The annual contest is on to find the perfect slogan for Fire Prevention Week. The winning slogan and the author's name will appear on next year's official NIH Fire Prevention Week posters. Here are the rules:

  • Enter as often as you like.
  • Slogans should directly pertain to the objectives of fire prevention, and not exceed one sentence in length.
  • Slogans should be legibly printed or typed on one side of 8 1/2" x 11" white paper, and ranked in your order of preference.
  • Entries should be original, creative, and unpublished at the time of submission.
  • All entries will be examined by the contest judges, and their decision is final.
  • Employees of the Emergency Management Branch, Division of Public Safety, and their immediate family members are not eligible.
  • A prize will be awarded for the best qualifying slogan, on the basis of originality, inventiveness, and creativity.
  • Deadline to enter is Sept. 30.
  • Submit entries to: Fire Prevention Section (Attn.: J.P. McCabe), Bldg. 15G, Rm. 2, 5202 West Cedar Lane, MSC 2660, Bethesda, MD 20892-2660; Fax: 2-2059. For more information, call 6-0487.


Editor: Sue Kendall

Guest Writers: Bonnie Flock and K.C. Gardner

Clinical Center News, 6100 Executive Blvd., Suite 3C01, MSC 7511, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892-7511. Tel: 301-496-2563. Fax: 301-402-2984. Published monthly for CC employees by the Office of Clinical Center Communications, Colleen Henrichsen, chief. News, article ideas, calendar events, letters, and photographs are welcome. Deadline for submissions is the second Monday of each month.
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