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This file is provided for reference purposes only. It was current when it was produced, but it is no longer maintained and may now be out of date. Persons with disabilities having difficulty accessing information may contact us for assistance. For reliable, current information on this and other health topics, we recommend consulting the NIH Clinical Center at http://www.cc.nih.gov/.

past issues

 Published monthly for CC employees by Clinical Center Communications

February 1999


New CC south entrance

Human resources

Volunteer's needed

Organ transplant program

CC Roundtable

Special assistant dies

CC volunteer dies

Internet and email usage

Nutrition Department leads efforts

Sen. John Glenn

Quality of worklife

13 West re-opens

News briefs

 

 
Cutting the commemorative ribbon are (from left to right) Dr. David Henderson, CC deputy director for clinical care; Dr. Ruth Kirschstein, NIH deputy director; Dr. Michael Gottesman, deputy director for intramural research; NIH Director Dr. Harold Varmus; and Stephen Ficca, director, Office of Research Services.


Ceremony marks opening of new south entrance

On Monday, January 11 a ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the opening of the new entrance for the Clinical Center.

This south entrance will be in effect until the completion of construction on the Mark O. Hatfield Clinical Research Center (CRC) on the north side of the building projected for 2002.

The ceremony gathered together an array of individuals, including employees, department heads, Board members, architects and construction workers. They all came to commemorate in the words of NIH Director Dr. Harold Varmus, "the pathway."

"I would like to congratulate the people responsible for the architecture and construction," said Dr. Varmus. "After many months of confusion on this side of the building we can now get to work seriously on the CRC of the other side of the building."

Many attendees of the ceremony marveled at the likeness that the new entrance has to the one of several decades ago and were in awe at the grandness of the bright, open space.

Volunteers wearing red "Way to Go" buttons have and will continue to help staff and visitors find their way around the new entrance. Message boards containing up-to-date information on how construction will affect building occupants will continue to be provided throughout the work phases.

Factsheets can also be accessed online at http://www.cc.nih.gov/ccc/waytogo/update1.html.

-by LaTonya Kittles

 

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Human Resources

The Office of Human Resources Management would like to remind CC employees about important benefit concerns. They include:

Post '56 Military Service Deposits
Did you know that if you performed active duty military service after 1956 (after June 30, 1960 in the Commissioned Corps), you may need to pay a deposit (including interest) to DHHS in order to receive retirement credit for the military service (FERS employees) at the time of retirement, or to retain the credit when you reach age 62 and become eligible for Social Security benefits (CSRS employees)? For more details, see your personnel office.

Temporary Continuation of Health Benefits Coverage
Did you know that when your child reaches age 22 (or marries before age 22) he or she is no longer eligible to be covered under your health benefits enrollment? This is true even if your child is still in school. You have 60 days from the date he/she gets married or turns age 22 (whichever occurs first) to notify your personnel office. That office will give you information on how your child may enroll in his/her own right for temporary continuation of coverage (TCC). The enrollment will be for up to 36 months and the child will have to pay the full premium (no government contribution), plus a 2% administrative charge.

TCC enrollments are also available to you should you leave the government (coverage is for up to 18 months) and for a former spouse should you get divorced (coverage is for up to 36 months). See your personnel office for details.

Changes You May Make in Your Health Benefits Enrollment
Outside of the annual open season there are only certain events (such as marriage, birth of a child) which allow you to make a change in your health benefits enrollment. Did you know that you may change your enrollment from family to self-only coverage at any time? This is of particular importance to you when the last member of your family ceases to be eligible for coverage under your plan (for instance, when your youngest child turns age 22 and you are divorced or widowed). See your personnel office for details.

Changes You May Make in Your Life Insurance Coverage
Did you know that you may elect or increase your Option B (additional coverage) if you marry or have a child? You may also elect Option C (family coverage) if one of these events occurs. If you already have Option C coverage and your last family member ceases to be eligible for coverage (youngest child turns age 22, etc.) you should complete a SF 2817 declining Option C coverage. See your personnel office for details.

Election of Living Benefits and Assignment of Life Insurance
Did you know that if you are diagnosed as having a terminal illness you may be eligible to elect living benefits? This would allow you to receive up to the full amount of your basic life insurance coverage while you are still alive instead of payment going to your survivors after your death. You may, instead, assign all of your life insurance coverage to a viatical settlement firm in return for a payment equal to a portion of your coverage (usually 50-80%, depending on life expectancy). That firm would then be paid your life insurance after your death.

You may also assign your life insurance to another person or persons, including an individual, a corporation or an irrevocable trust in order to satisfy the requirements of a court order, upon divorce, for inheritance tax purposes, or to satisfy a debt. See your personnel office for details.

Designations of Beneficiary
Did you know that you may complete a Designation of Beneficiary form for Unpaid Compensation, Life Insurance, Retirement, and the Thrift Savings Plan, if you want the payment upon your death to go to someone other than the person(s) entitled under the normal Order of Precedence? Do you know if your designations are up to date? Did you know that a designation may still be valid, even if your family situation has changed? For instance, if you designated your spouse and you have since gotten divorced, your former spouse is still your beneficiary unless you file a new Designation of Beneficiary, either canceling the previous one or designating someone else.

To reach the Office of Human Resources Management regarding any of these benefit concerns call 6-6924.

-Office of Human Resources Management


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Volunteers Needed

Pelvic pain
Participants are needed for a study to evaluate whether surgery followed by a new medical treatment reduces pain for a longer time than surgery alone. To qualify you must:

-have normal menstrual cycles
-have a three month history of pelvic pain
-have had no recent treatment for endometriosis
-not take any chronic medications, including birth control pills
-not be pregnant or nursing.

If interested, call 2-0851.

Blood study
Male volunteers over 40 years of age and females over 50 years of age are needed for a study to assess the effects of donating blood on prevention of heart disease. Participants should have donated blood no more than once in each of the last five years, and given fewer than 15 units in their lifetime. Blood studies and carotid ultrasound will be done. Two outpatient visits are required. For more information, call Xin Fu at 2-4482.

 

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CC to become site for new solid organ transplant program

The Clinical Center will become the site for an innovative new kidney, pancreas, and islet transplant program designed in conjunction with several major research centers.

"The Clinical Center is fortunate to be a collaborator in this exciting scientific opportunity," said CC Director Dr. John Gallin. "We are working closely with several organizations to provide the necessary resources-including staff, equipment, and space-to fully support this important initiative."

The effort is a collaboration between the CC, the NIDDK, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, the Naval Medical Research Center, and the Diabetes Research Institute of the University of Miami.

Program planners hope this initiative will allow tests of novel therapies that can eliminate the need for immunosuppressive drugs, which are taken by patients to keep their bodies from rejecting new transplanted organs, such as kidneys.

Patients with Type 1 diabetes could also potentially benefit from the new program. In these patients, insulin-producing cell clusters called islets have been destroyed. In the past, islet transplants often didn't work because anti-rejection therapies failed. This new program could offer new treatment options to benefit these patients.

A new Navy-NIDDK Transplantation and Autoimmunity Research Branch will develop the actual clinical protocols involved with the program. It is anticipated that research advances from this branch will translate into pilot clinical trials.

The CC will be the site for these phase one and phase two trials, which test the safety and effectiveness of a treatment in small numbers of people. If successful, the findings uncovered here could provide the basis for larger studies that could be conducted around the country.

The program is expected to begin this summer.

 

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CC Roundtable continues

The premiere of CC Roundtable, "What's New in the Imaging Sciences," was broadcast live from the CC on Jan. 15. In the spotlight (from left) were Dr. Brad Wood, CC Diagnostic Radiology; Dr. Andrew Arai, NHLBI; CC Director Dr. John Gallin; Dr. R. Nick Bryan, CC Diagnostic Radiology; and Dr. Ronald Summers, CC Diagnostic Radiology. On February 19, Dr. Henry Masur, chief of the CC Critical Care Medicine Department, will lead "Cutting-Edge Issues in Antiretroviral Therapy." The programs are broadcast live over the GE TiP-TV Healthcare Network and CenterNet-The Academic Health Center Network. NIH staff can view the programs through simulcast in Lipsett Amphitheater at noon. CME credit is available and everyone is welcome to attend. For more information call 6-2563.

 

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CC special assistant for biostatistics dies

Dr. David W. Alling, 80, a special assistant for biostatistics at the Clinical Center, died on January 20 of respiratory failure. Dr. Alling was a pioneer in the application of statistical methods to biomedical research.

Dr. Alling was born in Rochester, N.Y., and earned his medical degree from the University of Rochester. He did an internship in internal medicine at Arnot-Ogden Hospital in Elmira, N.Y., and was a resident in pulmonary diseases at Biggs Memorial Hospital in Ithaca, N.Y.

After earning his doctorate in statistics at Cornell University in 1959, Dr. Alling joined the NCI as a medical officer. In 1960, he accepted the same position with the NIAID, and in 1964 was appointed the Institute's research mathematical statistician. In 1971 he became special assistant for biometry.

In his work at NIH, Dr. Alling assisted researchers in specifically defining the population sample needed to show efficacy of a particular therapeutic agent, in developing clinical protocols, in randomizing the drug treatment, and in expert statistical analysis of the data. He made numerous contributions to scientific journals on mathematical and statistical theory, and trained upcoming physicians in statistics and methodology. Dr. Alling received the Public Health Service Superior Service Award in 1981 and the Public Health Service Special Recognition Award in 1989.

Since 1996, the Clinical Center was fortunate to have Dr. Alling as a special assistant for biostatistics. He was a valued collaborator and dear friend to many.

-by Sue Kendall

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CC volunteer dies after years of service to the NIH community

Mary Maze, 69, former CC employee and Red Cross volunteer, died Dec. 23. She had asthma.

Maze came to the CC in 1985 as an employee development specialist and retired in 1992. After leaving NIH she volunteered at the CC with both the Blood Bank and the Red Cross desk.

"Most people knew her as a really fine humanitarian who always had a mission," said Andrea Rander, director of volunteer services. "She was a valuable part of my life and to others in the hospital and her death is an enormous loss to us all."

Maze was a Massachusetts native who graduated in 1950 from Newton College of the Sacred Heart in Newton, Mass. She received a master's degree in education from the State Teachers College in Boston and in 1983 completed a two-year education for parish service program at Trinity College in Washington.

She is survived by her husband, Chester, of Bethesda; a son, Charles, of San Diego; two daughters, Marianne Maze Bullen of Gaithersburg, and Elizabeth Maze, of Alexandria; and three grandchildren.

 

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Internet and e-mail use in the CC

CC employees are reminded that internet access and e-mail are provided in the CC for government use in support of the NIH mission. You can review the official NIH internet policy at http://irm.cit.nih.gov/policy/email.html.

In addition, the e-mail services provided by the Information Systems Department are not secure and should not be used to transmit confidential or sensitive information (i.e., identified patient data).

If you have any questions about appropriate use, call your ISD user support representative.

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Nutrition Department leads e-mail access efforts

    During the grand opening celebration for the Nutrition Department Computer Learning Center, students and mentors alike gathered to celebrate. They included (front row from left) Stacy Mason, Mary Buzzanell, Stacy Bates, India Payne, Jacinta Mason, and Department Chief Alberta Bourn. Andre Williams is pictured in the back. Not shown is mentor Patty Coffman.


Everyday as many people enter the "information superhighway," there are probably just as many who opt to take a back road. Not in the CC Nutrition Department, where employees are learning about computers through a pilot initiative aimed at providing e-mail access to all interested employees.

"One of our organizational goals is to meet quality-of-worklife standards regarding e-mail access set forth by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Dr. Donna Shalala," said Walter Jones, deputy director for management and operations. "This pilot program in nutrition will become an example that other departments throughout the hospital can follow to help provide complete e-mail access to their employees."

The Nutrition Department pilot is entirely voluntary for employees. Mentors in the department provide several training sessions to employees on components of the computer, accessing e-mail, word processing, and other pertinent areas.

"The training affects approximately 50 employees in the department who do not use computers in their day-to-day duties," said Alberta Bourn, department chief. "We have found that many people are excited to have the opportunity to learn about computers and we in turn are excited that we are able to provide this resource."

The department's dream became reality when they turned their small conference room into the "Computer Learning Center," and were donated computers to provide this service to staff who truly appreciate the opportunity to keep up with technology.

"I am fortunate to be able to use these computers because I can find out information more quickly," said Preston Parker, cook. "These skills will also help me in my future."

Mentors such as Jacinta Mason donate their time to teach co-workers who don't work on computers everyday. "It's a really good program because it helps with the morale and self-esteem of the workers," said Mason. "It also takes a lot of pressure off the department because if people are able to access e-mail on their own it will save time, paper, and resources."

For more information on the CC Nutrition e-mail pilot, contact Alberta Bourn at 6-4981.

Mentors in the program provide training to staff on e-mail and other computer programs. Shown is mentor India Payne and trainee Eddie Shadding.    

-by LaTonya Kittles

 

 

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Sen. John Glenn and space shuttle astronauts visit the CC

    Senator Glenn made history in 1962 as the first American to orbit the earth, and again last year when at 77 he became the oldest person ever to participate in space flight. Joining him in greeting attendees is Dr. Donna Shalala, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.

Senator John Glenn and the Space Shuttle Discovery astronauts visited the CC last month to discuss their most recent mission. The NIH and NASA are collaborating on a wide range of research areas, including investigations devoted to understanding issues including sleep behavior and maintenance of muscle mass and strength.

   

 

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Improve your quality of worklife

 The CC Quality of Worklife Council encourages employees to take advantage of career management counseling sessions at the NIH Work and Family Life Center. These sessions will help assist employees to more effectively direct their careers. To schedule a confidential, one-hour appointment, call 5-1619.

If you have any suggestions for the CC Quality of Worklife Council, just drop them in the Employee Suggestion Box located in the hallway of the B1 level cafeteria. Watch the CC News for more information on the Council's activities.

 

 

 

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13 West re-opens for patients

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held last month to re-open the 13 West patient care unit, which had been closed for a year for renovations. New to the unit are three isolation rooms, larger playrooms for the children, and better accommodations for parents to relax and sleep in the rooms. "We are very happy to be on this bright and cheerful unit," said Barbara Corey, nurse manager. Among participants in the ceremony were CC Director Dr. John Gallin, and a host of clinical staff and patients.

 

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News briefs

CC Roundtable

"Cutting-Edge Issues in Antiretroviral Therapy" is the subject of the Feb. 19 CC Roundtable planned for noon in Lipsett Amphitheater. CC Director Dr. John Gallin, and panel leader Henry Masur, chief of the Critical Care Medicine Department, will lead the live broadcast. Speakers include NIAID's Dr. Judith Falloon and Dr. David Henderson, CC deputy director for clinical care.

 

Another open season

The Federal Employees Group Life Insurance open season will run from April 24 through June 30, 1999. For more information, including plan brochures, contact human resources at 6-6924.

 

Seminar announced

If you are caring for an aging relative and would like to share with other caregivers, the Work and Family Life Center will be hosting a brown bag luncheon just for you. The Eldercare Discussion Groups will be held on Feb. 3 and 17 from noon to 1 p.m. in Building 31, room B2B57. For more information, call 6-3164.

 

Statements coming

Due to the overwhelming responses received from CC employees, the Office of Human Resources Management will again this year provide the Personalized Statement of Benefits. Enclosed with the benefits statement will be a customer satisfaction survey designed to obtain feedback, ideas, and comments on the services provided by the office. Watch for your annual Personal Statement of Benefits and the customer satisfaction survey this month. If you have questions or comments, call Sharon Reed at 6-6924.

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

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