September 11, 2017

It’s hard to believe that less than a week ago Hurricane Harvey slammed into the Greater Houston area dumping foot after foot of rain into our communities’ streets, homes and businesses. Since then, people across the region – including many employees at Texas Children’s – have been working around the clock to try and put their lives back together again.

Many of those directly affected by the storm are looking for help, and many of those who were spared by the storm’s wrath are more than willing to lend a helping hand. As you move forward with your recovery efforts, please remember there are guidelines Texas Children’s employees must follow when seeking and receiving aid.

One most important guideline to note pertains to the use of the Texas Children’s name and/or logo. Using the organization’s name and/or logo is not allowed when soliciting funds or other types of help unless the request is done in an official capacity. Therefore, individual employees should not mention Texas Children’s or their employment with the organization when seeking aid whether it be via an email to colleagues, a GoFundMe page, an Amazon Wish List or a post on social media.

Additional guidelines about giving and accepting gifts in your role at Texas Children’s can be found here.

“We understand that many of our employees are suffering due to the storm and are in need of help, however it is important that everyone follows our policy to not use the Texas Children’s name or logo in any way other than in an official capacity,” said Director of Risk Management Melissa Murrah. “There are many other ways to seek help and offer aid, such as donating to our Employee Financial Assistance Fund.”

Many Hurricane Harvey relief opportunities can be found here and include ways to donate money to employees affected by the storm, how to apply for employee assistance funds and an Employee Resource Network developed to help employees with needs related to Hurricane Harvey and connect with employees who would like to volunteer their services of a resource.

If you have a question about giving or receiving gifts pertaining to the storm, please contact Compliance and Privacy (ext. 4-2085 or compliance@texaschildrens.org).

March 7, 2017

Texas Children’s is committed to the health and well-being of our patients, their families and our employees. This is why all patient care providers and other employees whose duties are listed below are required to have their routine tuberculosis (TB) skin test. Testing will begin Tuesday, March 7 (click on the flier for larger view of all dates, times, and locations).

Employees who are unable to be tested on any of these dates may make appointments by calling Employee Health at ext. 4-2150.

Which Texas Children’s employees are required to receive a TB skin test?

  • Employees who work in a hospital setting
  • Employees who work in a non-hospital setting but have possible patient contact
  • Employees who have face-to-face contact with suspected or confirmed TB patients or have the potential of exposure through shared air space with infectious patients
  • Employees with a negative TB skin test history and have not received a TB skin test in 2017

Employees with a known positive TB skin test will NOT receive a TB skin test. They will receive an email with instructions to complete a questionnaire through the Employee Health & Wellness Portal. Employees located off-site will receive separate instructions from their leader at a later date.

The current risk assessment provided by the Texas Children’s Infection Control Committee states that routine skin testing will occur every two years. For more information, please see sections 8 and 9 of the Tuberculosis Exposure Control Plan Procedure or visit the Employee Health Services page on Connect.

Thank you in advance for your support in helping safeguard the well-being of our patients, their families, and our employees.

February 28, 2017

At Texas Children’s, we are a community that cares for our patients, their families and each other, so as we get ready to celebrate National Nutrition Month® in March, it is important to remember that healthy eating is always in season.

To celebrate this year’s theme, Put Your Best Fork Forward, the Food and Nutrition Services department, in partnership with Employee Health and Well-Being, is sponsoring several events throughout the month of March. Whether you are planning meals to prepare at home or making selections when eating out, Put Your Best Fork Forward to help find your healthy eating choices. Throughout March, there will be several events and resources offered across the organization:

Celebrating National Nutrition Month Event

This event will teach you how to incorporate healthy fats into your diet, show you which foods have the most protein, provide healthy eating strategies, and much more. Our Texas Children’s health coach and registered dietitians will be present to answer your nutrition questions. We hope to see you there!

Thursday, March 16
11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
West Campus, DOTS Kitchen corridor

Wednesday, March 22
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Main Campus, The Auxiliary Bridge

Well-Being Wednesdays
Join our Fresh Bistro chefs every Wednesday to enjoy a healthy meal while our registered dietitians and Well-Being Team provide nutritional facts and creative cooking tips.

  • Wednesday, March 8 – Taco Salad Bar with Chef Joseph
  • Wednesday, March 15 – Vietnamese Pho Station with Chef Kenya
  • Wednesday, March 22 – Gyro Station with Chef Dee
  • Wednesday, March 29 – Taco Salad Bar with Chef Lyle

Pavilion for Women, Fresh Bistro
11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Healthy Plentiful Bowl Promotion at Fresh Bistro

Starting Monday, March 6, through Friday, March 31, if you purchase a minimum of five healthy plentiful bowls from the Wild Greens Salad Station, you will receive one at no cost. To learn more about the promotion, visit the Fresh Bistro at the Pavilion for Women.

Skinny Latte Challenge and Breakfast Meal Samples

Can you taste the difference between a regular latte and a skinny latte? Our registered dietitians will provide these latte options to see if you can tell difference. Enter for a chance to win a $50 gift card from Snap Kitchen.

Thursday, March 9
8 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Clinical Care Center Food Court and West Campus DOTS Kitchen corridor

Friday, March 24
8 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Meyer Building lobby
*Healthy breakfast samples will be provided!

Weekly Nutrition Tips

We are excited to announce that beginning March 1, you can receive year-round weekly nutrition and well-being tips by texting WellBeing to 882-02 (message and data rates may apply).

Check out the Texas Children’s Blog and Voice of Nursing Blog during the month of March for weekly tips about healthy eating and proper nutrition.

Resources to Support Your Nutrition

The Employee Health and Well-Being Team provides a variety of nutrition resources:
Snap Kitchen – 10 percent off purchases in store
Weight Watchers – 50 percent subsidy on membership
Health Coaching Program – no cost for Texas Children’s employees
Nutrition Consulting – no cost for Texas Children’s employees

#NationalNutritionMonth, #TexasChildrens

Use these hashtags and share pictures of your healthy meals, at work, home or while dining out, throughout the month of March. You can also submit your healthy meal photos to culture@texaschildrens.org to join our photo gallery on Connect.

For more information about proper nutrition and National Nutrition Month events at Texas Children’s, please visit the Well-being website on Connect or email wellbeing@texaschildrens.org.

As part of our commitment to our employees’ health and well-being, Texas Children’s is excited to announce the opening of an Employee Medical Clinic at West Campus.

When will clinical services be available?

Beginning Wednesday, March 1, employees at West Campus, as well as in nearby Texas Children’s Pediatrics practices, can access clinical services on the first and third Wednesday of each month. To provide convenient access, the medical clinic will share office space with the Employee Health Clinic located on the second floor of West Campus. Hours of operations will be from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. While scheduled appointments are preferred, walk-in patients will be worked into the schedule based on availability.

What services can I receive?

Dr. Irene M. Lomeda, from our clinic in the Texas Medical Center, will be the physician on-site. In addition to primary and urgent care services, the following services will also be offered:

  • Annual physicals/well-woman/well-men exams
  • Rapid strep, flu, glucose, urinalysis, and pregnancy testing
  • Chronic disease management for conditions such as diabetes and heart disease
  • Phone consultations (for established patients) for treatment of non-emergency medical issues
  • Vaccinations (meningococcal, papilloma virus, pneumococcal and shingles)
  • Travel medicine (limited)
  • Health Coaching program

Employees enrolled in Texas Children’s medical insurance plans will have a $10 co-pay per visit. Your privacy is of the utmost importance to us; your information will be secure via confidential electronic medical records, which is hosted externally.

To learn more about the services offered at the new Employee Medical Clinic at West Campus, please click here.

January 24, 2017

12517retirement640As we welcome 2017, take this opportunity to include retirement planning among your New Year’s resolutions.

To help you in your retirement planning process, Human Resources is excited to announce three new educational tools on our benefits website to help you achieve your New Year’s resolution to plan for the right retirement.

Our new interactive retirement modules streamline the retirement planning process into three different career/life stages with tips and tools best suited for your needs. Valuable information on Texas Children’s retirement benefits, including the 403(b) Savings Plan and a Pension Plan, are available in addition to various resources that aid in retirement planning and saving.

Take advantage of tools such as:

  • Retirement calculator for projected cost of living
  • Money management tips
  • Overview of various financial considerations during different life stages

As you commit to your New Year’s resolutions, make the commitment to plan the right retirement strategy today!

Throughout the year, we will continue to announce additional retirement resources such as Fidelity one-on-one consultations and workshops, so stay tuned!

Did you know?
In 2016, Texas Children’s contributed $18.6 million to match your 403(b) Savings Plan investments and $22 million for approximately 9,000 participants in our Pension Plan. Also, Texas Children’s matches 50 percent on the first 6 percent of your pre-tax contributions per pay period. To learn more about your retirement benefits, click here.

12517MLKholiday640In an email announcement Monday morning, Texas Children’s President and CEO Mark Wallace shared exciting news: beginning in 2018, Texas Children’s will observe Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day as an organizational holiday.

This holiday is a new holiday and will be added to all of the holidays employees currently enjoy as a benefit of working at Texas Children’s – employees will not lose My Day or any other holiday. Here is Mr. Wallace’s announcement in its entirety:

Dear Texas Children’s Family,

I am very pleased to share something with you that I have been considering for quite some time now. Beginning in 2018, Texas Children’s will observe Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day as an organizational holiday.

I often think about the beliefs and work of Dr. King and how closely aligned they are with the mission of Texas Children’s. Our organization is one that, since its inception nearly 63 years ago, has prided itself in the rich diversity of our culture and the families we serve. We, like Dr. King, embrace inclusiveness and greatly appreciate working in an organization that values all ideas and aspirations, working together for the greater good. Simply put, this is right for our organization. In addition, this makes sense for us operationally, as our partners at Baylor College of Medicine observe the MLK Day holiday.

While you likely understand the sentiment, you might naturally wonder, “Why now?” I want you to understand that while the announcement is occurring today, this has long been on my heart and mind. In fact, we were considering adding MLK Day as an organizational holiday many years ago. However, we also had to consider whether we would subsequently add other observations. Ultimately, we determined that providing employees with the My Day PTO day would allow all to observe MLK Day or, alternately, another special day that may be personally important to them. I sincerely believe that was a good thing for our employees, but I admit to you that I think so many years have passed that the impetus for My Day has been lost.

I also admit to you that the nation’s racial climate in recent years stirs me. America has always been considered a melting pot, but we are now growing increasingly more diverse at a much more rapid pace than most people have ever experienced. We, as a nation, are learning how to redefine our country, but not without growing pains. Yet, in the midst of this, I see how we at Texas Children’s use our differences to make us better. The brilliant tapestry of our cultures, religions, races and genders is woven perfectly with our collective talents, gifts and aspirations. This is beautiful, and it is worth celebrating on the day that salutes the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

I hope you will join me in my excitement and look forward to enjoying this special day of reflection for years to come.

Regards,

Mark

December 6, 2016

12616retirementbenefits250At Texas Children’s, our employees lead tirelessly every day in service to our patients and our organization. As part of our commitment to your financial well-being, our comprehensive Total Rewards program includes two retirement plans to help you save for your future.

Texas Children’s Pension Plan
We are excited to announce that on approximately Friday, December 9, Texas Children’s will post your 2016 Pension Plan deposit into your account. To see how much your pension plan has grown, log into your account at ibenefitcenter.com. For new users, you can register by clicking on “Get Started” to enter the last four digits of your social security number and your date of birth. On the website, you will also find useful tools to help you view your balance, estimate your future pension plan balance and verify/update your beneficiary information.

This pension plan is designed to provide a foundation for your retirement and is fully funded by Texas Children’s. You are automatically enrolled in the plan on April 1 or October 1 once you reach 21 years of age and have worked 1,000 hours or more during the 12 consecutive months after your initial date of hire.

To learn more about the pension plan, click here to view the summary plan description or call the Texas Children’s Pension Plan Support Team at 800-752-8230 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday central time.

Texas Children’s 403(b) Savings Plan
The 403(b) savings plan provides matching contributions (free money) from Texas Children’s! Texas Children’s matches 50 percent on the first 6 percent of your pre-tax contributions per pay period, to a maximum of $8,100 for 2017, and then you choose how to invest those funds. The more you save, the more Texas Children’s contributes. If you are not already enrolled in the 403(b) savings plan or not contributing at least 6 percent, you should consider doing so now.

You can enroll anytime by contacting Fidelity at 800-343-0860 between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m., Monday through Friday central time or online at fidelity.com/atwork. If you are registering online for the first time, please click on “Register” in the login area to enter the last 4 digits of your social security number and your date of birth. Don’t miss out on this valuable match!