We caught up with CEO Ed Jimenez and asked him several questions for this edition of News+Notes. See how to submit your question at the bottom of the page!
How have our pediatric services and children’s hospital improved over the years?
If you turn back the clock a little more than half a decade, the identity of the children’s hospital was hard to find. Over the last six or seven years it’s become a space that is immediately recognizable as a children’s hospital. We have a grand entrance and design features that are welcoming and meaningful. We have a pediatric emergency room with family-friendly features. And our pediatric care teams have great reputations that attract patients from all over. We’ve also been able to expand or renovate spaces to grow programs.
A good example is in hematology/oncology — if you saw Units 41 and 42 a decade ago, you know how much they’ve improved. Five years ago, for inpatients, the UF Health Congenital Heart Center was virtual in nature, with patients receiving care in various areas of the hospital. Now those inpatients receive care in one place in the Pediatric Cardiac ICU. These renovations and expansions allow our faculty and staff to take their programs to the next level.
We continue to hear about mass casualty events in the news, are we prepared for this?
The Level 1 trauma centers in our country are prepared for the unexpected and we’re no exception. We’ve handled our share of these types of events — the multivehicle accident in January 2012 caused by smoke on Interstate 75 was an example that gained national attention. These kinds of incidents themselves are ugly, but invariably you hear about the heroism that occurs among the first responders and caregivers. People who work in these settings aren’t surprised by these feats. Our emergency response leaders continue to assess and test our systems with drill exercises so we stay prepared. If another incident happens, we’ll be ready, figure out how to get through it and perform really well.
Why do you think our employee engagement scores keep improving?
I don’t focus much on our score and that may surprise people. I’m more interested in how many people take the annual UF Health Shands Employee Engagement Survey — and this year we again exceeded 80 percent participation. Think about how many surveys you get a week, whether it’s after you get an oil change or shop at a store. When I get these emails, I usually press delete. Yet, the vast majority of our employees take our survey. I think so many people take it because they aren’t afraid to speak their minds, and they know we’re going to listen and do something with the data. They know it’s confidential and they can share freely to help us improve the workplace. These open lines of communication make us a stronger organization and, I believe, lead to higher engagement scores.
WANT TO SUBMIT A QUESTION?
Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll consider it for an upcoming edition.