May 6, 2014
Sandi Sands received the award from Carol Santalucia and Jason Wolf of the Beryle Institute.

Sandi Sands, senior family advocate, Family Advocacy and Spiritual Care, received the Ruth Ravich award for her leadership and mentoring capabilities locally, regionally and nationally regarding advocacy. Sandi’s philosophy regarding advocacy has always been about placing an attitude of teamwork into the fabric of everything she does for the patient. She has never been about boasting about what she does simply because her area of strength is in taking care of others, especially individuals desiring to embark upon a career in advocacy and become caregivers that ultimately impact care teams! Sandi is a behind the scenes whirlwind who gets it done!

Ruth Ravich was the founder and first president of the former Society for Healthcare Consumer Advocacy (SCHA). Ms. Ravich organized the Patient Representative Department at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, was the author of numerous healthcare consumer articles, and lectured on patient advocacy both in the United States and abroad.

In 1991, the SHCA Board of Directors established the Ruth Ravich Founders’ Award, sponsored by rL Solutions, to recognize an individual whose work supported the vision of the Society – to bring the patients’ needs to the center of healthcare. The first award was presented in 1991 to Ruth Ravich, the Society’s first president, and for whom the award is named.

Sands received this award while at the Beryle Institute Patient Experience Conference (as SCHA no longer exists) for her willingness to step in and serve in the patient advocacy community of the Beryl Institute.



April 29, 2014


After announcing the new quarterly, “Best of the West” recognition program, West Campus leaders received numerous nominations for worthy employees. The “Best of the West” program was designed specifically to recognize and honor those individuals at West Campus who excel in exhibiting the characteristics outlined in the Texas Children’s Hospital Guiding Principles.

Ruth Avila, a patient interpreter liaison, has been selected as the first ever “Best of the West” recipient. Ruth joined Texas Children’s in 2003, and she has been a part of the West Campus team since its inception. Ruth’s nomination describes her work as a volunteer co-facilitator for a support group of Spanish speaking families whose children are being cared for in the Hematology & Oncology Center at West Campus. She is described as always having a positive attitude that is contagious to those around her. Her nomination also describes her empathy and cultural sensitivity for our patients and their families. Below are some words shared about Ruth:

“Ruth is the perfect person to obtain the first “Best of the West” award as she is one of the first employees at West Campus and is known for her compassion and professional approach. She transferred to West Campus from the Main Campus and continues to maintain excellent relationships with Language Services at Main Campus which supports seamless care for our patients. Last year, Ruth completed oral and written examinations and achieved certification as a national medical interpreter, ahead of many of her peers. Ruth is an expert in all aspects of her profession including interpreting, translation of written documents, telephonic and video procedures. Ruth often tells me she loves her job and it certainly shows!”

Congratulations to Ruth. Take time to nominate the next Best of the West employee(This link will only open internally)

April 22, 2014


The Spring 2014 graduates of the Texas Children’s Hospital Lean Six Sigma Green Belt program received their certifications at a ceremony on March 31. Since February 2009, the Department of Business Process Transformation has trained more than 150 employees including physicians, directors, managers and other informal leaders including front line staff members on the Lean Six Sigma process improvement methodology. More than 80 percent of the candidates trained in the program went on to complete the requirements for certification, with more students approaching their project close dates this summer.

The Texas Children’s certification recognizes candidates who provide statistically significant evidence that their process improvement project resulted in positive outcomes in quality, cost or cycle time metrics. Certified Green Belts at Texas Children’s include representation from inpatient/outpatient areas, ancillary departments, Texas Children’s Health Plan (TCHP), Texas Children’s Pediatrics, Baylor and Texas Children’s Physician Service Organization (TCPSO). The certification ceremonies are held annually each spring.

The Department of Business Process Transformation offers Lean Belt Training (a prerequisite for Green Belt) now available for enrollment through the Learning Academy.

Dr. Huda Zoghbi, director of the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute (NRI), will receive the 2014 March of Dimes Prize in Developmental biology at a ceremony held in Vancouver on May 5. The award, given annually, honors investigators whose research has profoundly advanced the science that underlies the understanding of birth defects.

Zoghbi’s best known for her pioneering work on Rett syndrome, a cause she first became passionate about after encountering children with the disease during her residency. She’s since been tireless in her efforts to find the genetic cause of the syndrome. In 1999, she was successful in identifying the Rett gene, providing a definitive genetic diagnoses for the condition and allowing a biological understanding and search for treatment.

“Dr. Zoghbi’s contributions to our understanding of several entirely different neurological disorders, including her finding of the genetic basis of Rett syndrome, have opened new areas of research,” says Dr. Joe Leigh Simpson, senior vice president for Research and Global Programs at the March of Dimes. “Her work influences the entire field of autism and other neuropsychiatric disorders.”

Rett syndrome is a genetic neurological disease that affects young girls who are born with the disease and develop normally for one to two years until they show progressive loss of motor skills, speech and cognitive abilities. Males with the condition usually die in infancy.

Zoghbi will deliver the 19th annual March of Dimes Lecture titled “Rett Syndrome and MECP2 Disorders: From the Clinic to Genes and Neurobiology,” during the Pediatric Academy Societies annual meeting. She will receive the March of Dimes Prize in Developmental Biology in a special award ceremony held during the meeting. Given annually, the March of Dimes Foundation created the prize in 1995 as a tribute to Dr. Jonas Salk, a pioneer in the development of the polio vaccine.
The March of Dimes Foundation is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health.

March 25, 2014


Dr. Michael Speer, Neonatology faculty (center), congratulates Drs. Athis Arunachalam and Jonathan Davies, third-year fellows, the 18th annual Arnold J. Rudolph Memorial Grand Rounds award recipients. The award recognizes third-year fellows in neonatal-perinatal medicine for outstanding teaching, patient care, scientific inquiry and professional integrity.

February 25, 2014

21914BrunoChumitazi150The Clinical Research Center presented the Clinical Research Award for fourth quarter 2013 to Dr. Bruno Chumpitazi, assistant professor, Department of Pediatrics-Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Baylor College of Medicine.

The 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.

Dr. Chumpitazi’s research activities in the CRC focus in treatment and outcome evaluation of techniques to diagnose and treat gastrointestinal motility disorders in children.

Congratulations to Dr. Chumpitazi.

February 18, 2014


On February 7, West Campus was awarded the top honor at the Houston West Chamber of Commerce’s 16th Annual Economic Development Summit and Star Awards. Michelle Riley-Brown, president of West Campus, accepted the 2014 Pillar Award which recognizes a business or organization that consistently and tirelessly supports the business community, exemplifies the determined spirit of the Houston West Chamber and promotes a superior quality of life in our community.

“I was truly honored and humbled to receive the highest award on behalf of Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus,” said Riley-Brown. “We have grown tremendously since we opened our doors three years ago, and we look forward to continuing to treat children and families in the West Houston community.”

The Pillar Award is voted on by the Star Award Events Committee. West Campus also served as a sponsor of the event.

Watch a video about West Campus.