February 25, 2019

Your name, title and department. How long have you worked here?
Valerie Rippey, RN, BSN; Inpatient staff nurse, Post Anesthesia Care Unit at Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus. I have been a part of this unit for four years but part of Texas Children’s for 10 years.

Tell us how you found out you won a super star award.
I was told to attend a staff meeting during the day that was imperative to changes on our unit. When I arrived I sat in the meeting as my assistant director and manager were going over the Texas Children’s Hospital Core Values and expectations on our unit (not out of the ordinary). There was a power point presentation that went along with the meeting and then our manager asked us about anyone we would select that role models the Texas Children’s values and what it means. Before I knew it I looked up as she was saying that we have someone on our unit who exemplifies these values and staff has taken note of it and they are a “super star” on and off the unit. She changed slides and when I looked, it took me a second to realize the picture was of me!

What does it mean to be recognized for the hard work you do? How has the organization helped you achieve your personal and professional goals?
Receiving the super star award was by far the biggest surprise in my professional career. I had no idea I was receiving this award nor did I expect it. It was a great feeling knowing that those around me have noticed my extra efforts to help create a stronger team dynamic in perioperative services. My unit has undergone many changes in the last couple of years and I decided recently to become more involved and be a part of the change. My leadership has been very supportive in allowing me to be able to branch out into different roles such as charge nurse, preceptor, and retention chair for perioperative services. They have provided the flexibility in my schedule to attend hospital-wide meetings, classes and always remain an accessible and valuable resource for me. Through these roles I have been able to build relationships with my peers as well as the entire multidisciplinary team.

What do you think makes someone at Texas Children’s a super star?
There are so many super stars at Texas Children’s. I feel that no matter where you go or which campus you step in, everyone goes out of their way to make you feel welcomed. A Texas Children’s super star is someone who goes out of their way to go above and beyond to take care of our patients, families and each other on a daily basis.

What is your motivation for going above and beyond every day at work?
Each and every day I am constantly motivated by children and their families. Over the last 10 years at Texas Children’s I have been fortunate to meet some of the most resilient little humans I have ever seen in my life. The fact that I can make a difference in a child and family’s life that will last a lifetime is what keeps me pushing to be better. I believe in the mission and core values of Texas Children’s and strive to embrace them daily.

What is the best thing about working at Texas Children’s?
The best thing about Texas Children’s is the magic. The magic that happens within the walls and outside as well. If you take a step back and just watch… you’ll see it. It’s every time providers and patients hug as if they are family. It’s in every little step that is taken and created to provide each and every child the very best care. It is the genuine love, support, care and compassion that is shown through all who wear a badge with the infamous red logo. It is the pride that comes shines out of me when someone asks where I work and I reply “Texas Children’s Hospital.” This is the place where truly amazing people make magical things happen every day. We ARE Texas Children’s Hospital.

What does it mean to you that everyone at Texas Children’s is considered a leader? What is your leadership definition?
The thing about Texas Children’s is that leadership comes in all shapes and forms. It does not matter what your job description is or what letters come after your name. Leadership is a characteristic that Texas Children’s recognizes throughout the entire organization. To me leadership has nothing to do with the position or title you are holding but everything to do with your influence on others. Leadership is building relationships and giving respect before the expectation of gaining it. I feel a true leader not only adds value and success to their team but strives to build other leaders.

Anything else you want to share?
The only reason I am able to do the things I have set out to do on my unit is because I have an amazing team around me that supports, encourages, and comes together like no other department I have worked in. The staff in perioperative services at West Campus are the true super stars day in and out. I am just the lucky one who brought the attention to it. They are my family away from home and I couldn’t be more grateful to be surrounded by such an amazing team.

February 11, 2019

On February 4, The Woodlands Recognition and Rewards Committee proudly presented the winners for the second quarter Woodlands Shining Star award to the very deserving winners, Karen Cortez-Calbang and Dr. Brent Schackett.

The employee-recognition award was launched after the opening of Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands in April 2017 and honors those who go above and beyond to provide exceptional care to our patients, families and staff in The Woodlands.

Cortez-Calbang is a registered nurse that has been part of Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) since The Woodlands campus opened.

“Her spirit is indefinable,” staff nurse and co-worker, Nhi Hoang said. “Karen is a natural born leader.”

Through her devotion of always putting her patients and team members first, Cortez-Calbang has earned great admiration and respect from patients, families, and her team. According to Hoang, regardless of the situation she is always calm and collected which is a great comfort to her patients.

“She inspires everyone she meets,” Hoang said. “She makes me and others want to be better nurses every day as we see her kindheartedness as a charge nurse.”

Schackett is an anesthesiologist who was nominated for constantly putting the patient first and providing high quality care. His focus on the patient and doing what is right helps to ensure the patient and family have a good experience every single time.

“He is warm, authentic, and selfless,” certified registered nurse anesthetists and co-worker, Meghan Duggan said. “He collaborates with every team member to make the day enjoyable.”

A huge congratulations and thank you to Cortez-Calbang and Schackett for being the Shining Star and going above and beyond for our patients, families, and co-workers.

The Clinical Research Center/Research Resources Office presented the Clinical Research Award for First Quarter 2019 to Ruth Eser-Jose, research coordinator with the Immunology, Allergy, Rheumatology and Retrovirology (IARR) Department.

This award was established by the Clinical Research Center in collaboration with the Research Resources Office to recognize and honor individual contributions to protecting the best interest of the research subjects and compliance with applicable rules and regulations.

Eser-Jose first joined Texas Children’s Hospital in 2005 and worked in the General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) as a staff nurse. She later transitioned in 2015 to her current role with IARR. Her research activities in the CRC focus on coordination and management of research participants in the Pediatric HIV/AIDS Cohort Study (PHACS) and International Maternal Pediatric Adolescent AIDS Clinical Trials Network (IMPAACT) Cohort HIV studies.

January 28, 2019

Your name, title and department. How long have you worked here?
My name is Deborah Bozek, Renal/Pheresis Nurse in the Renal/Pheresis Department. I have worked here almost two years.

Tell us how you found out you won a super star award.
We were gathered around the nurses’ station for a huddle. Everyone was there including the managers, director and assistant director. When someone said I had gotten a super star award, I was in a kind of shock. It was surreal.

What does it mean to be recognized for the hard work you do? How has the organization helped you achieve your personal and professional goals?
It is very humbling to be recognized because I feel like everyone in my department is a super star and comes to work and gives 110 percent every day. I work with an amazing group of professionals. Achieving my goals is a work in progress. Even though I have been a nurse for 25 years, I still have so many things I want to learn. There are many learning opportunities in my unit.

What do you think makes someone at Texas Children’s a super star?
A commitment to excellence in patient care and going that extra mile to help your coworkers.

What is your motivation for going above and beyond every day at work?
Every child deserves the best chance we can give them.

What is the best thing about working at Texas Children’s?
My amazing coworkers, their dedication, their knowledge, their generous spirits.

What does it mean to you that everyone at Texas Children’s is considered a leader? What is your leadership definition?
A leader is someone who can recognize the strengths of other people, then have the ability to channel that particular strength into furthering the mission of Texas Children’s.

Anything else you want to share?
I want to say thank you to my manager Julie Palmer for nominating me for this award. I want to thank my husband for being so supportive of me throughout my career.

January 15, 2019

Texas Children’s Cancer Center recently honored Senior Project Manager Robin Raesz-Martinez with the Bravo Award for her work with the KidsCanSeq Project, which investigates how tumor genetics may help inform treatment decisions and the impact of genetic findings on cancer surveillance, genetic testing and health care utilization.

The Bravo Awards are a new quarterly award aimed at recognizing members of the Cancer Center who go above and beyond to ensure our patients and families receive the best possible care.

Raesz-Martinez’s nominees praised her tireless work with our patients, her role in managing the KidsCanSeq project, as well as her teaching, not only Cancer Center staff, but staff across the state who are collaborating with Texas Children’s on this project.

Congratulations!

January 14, 2019

Emergency medical service professionals from across Texas recently gathered in Fort Worth for the 2018 Texas EMS Conference and Texas EMS Awards ceremony, where representatives from Texas Children’s trauma center accepted this year’s Trauma Center Award – the state EMS and Trauma system’s top honor for trauma facilities.

“This really is a big deal for Texas Children’s,” said Texas Children’s Associate Surgeon-in-Chief Dr. David Wesson. “The award signals that we’re among the best trauma centers in the state, adult or pediatric, and it represents a team effort by all of the Texas Children’s Trauma Team – doctors, nurses, data specialists, prevention experts, social workers and so many others, and our leaders, Dr. Bindi Naik-Mathuria and Christi Reeves.”

The Texas EMS Awards, sponsored by the Texas Department of State Health Services, honor individuals and organizations that exemplify the best that state EMS and Trauma have to offer. The Trauma Center Award is presented each year to one facility in the state that has demonstrated leadership and high standards in implementing injury prevention programs and in providing trauma patient care both to citizens and visitors of Texas. Most notably, the winning trauma center is selected from among both adult and pediatric trauma facilities by members of the Texas EMS community.

“These pre-hospital providers have a unique perspective on the quality of care delivered at trauma centers across the state,” said Wesson. “They want the best care for the patients they rescue in the field. So we should be very proud to have been recognized.”

The full continuum of trauma care

Texas Children’s Level I trauma center provides comprehensive, around-the-clock evaluation and treatment for the most severely injured patients that come to the hospital. Considering there are more than 1,000 annual trauma admissions at our Texas Medical Center campus, teamwork is absolutely essential for the rapid and decisive action needed to treat traumatic injuries. The multidisciplinary team includes pediatric surgeons and surgical subspecialists, emergency medicine physicians, critical care physicians, anesthesiologists, nurses, child life specialists, social workers, rehabilitation specialists, physical, occupational and respiratory therapists, and other support staff – all working together effectively and efficiently when every second matters.

In addition to the world-class clinical care we provide in our trauma center, we also work with state and regional organizations to provide educational opportunities for pre-hospital providers, nurses, community groups and other hospitals. Furthermore, we have teams specially dedicated to public health and injury prevention and to the prevention and management of child abuse and neglect.

Learn more about Texas Children’s trauma center.

December 4, 2018

Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus has received the prestigious Leapfrog 2018 Top Children’s Hospital award by The Leapfrog Group for the fifth year in a row. The award recognizes achievements in patient safety and quality and is widely acknowledged as one of the most competitive and exclusive honors an American hospital can receive.

“We are honored to receive the Leapfrog 2018 Top Children’s Hospital award again this year,” vice president of Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, Ivett Shah said. “This award recognizes our team of physicians, nurses and employees who work tirelessly to provide the highest-quality of care, in the safest environment, for our patients. We are proud to have our work recognized by the Leapfrog Group and we will continue to provide exemplary care for our community.”

Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus received a Top Children’s Hospital distinction and was recognized nationally alongside 35 Top General Hospitals, 17 Top Rural Hospitals, 53 Top Teaching Hospitals and only 13 other Top Children’s Hospitals.

“Being acknowledged as a Top Hospital is an incredible feat achieved by less than six percent of eligible hospitals nationwide,” president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group, Leah Binder said. “With this honor, Texas Children’s Hospital has established its commitment to safer and higher quality care. Providing this level of care to patients in Houston requires motivation and drive from every team member. I congratulate the board, staff and clinicians, whose efforts made this honor possible.”

The Leapfrog Group is an organization that provides the only national, public comparison of hospitals across safety, quality and efficiency dimensions. Performance across many areas of hospital care is considered in establishing the qualifications for the award, including infection rates, maternity care, and the hospital’s capacity to prevent medication errors.

To see the full list of institutions honored as 2018 Top Hospitals, visit www.leapfroggroup.org/tophospitals.