Internal Medicine recognized in four UIP Clinical Award categories

Since expanding in 2011 to cover the entire Carver College of Medicine, the University of Iowa Physicians (UIP) Clinical Awards has honored providers in six categories. This year, just as we did last year, the Department of Internal Medicine is proud of our recognition in four of those categories.

Earlier this week at a special ceremony held online and in the UI Urmila Sahai Auditorium, Doug Van Daele, MD, Executive Director of the UIP; Brooks Jackson, MD, MBA, Dean of the Carver College of Medicine and Vice President of Medical Affairs of University of Iowa Health Care, and Rachel Maassen, MD, MBA, Medical Chief of Staff, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, were on hand to recognize this year’s winners.

Patient Satisfaction and Service Excellence Award—Andrew Bryant, MD

This award is given to an individual or team in recognition of outstanding patient satisfaction. Metrics can include the Press Ganey Satisfaction Score, most improved score, or other patient feedback.

Dr. Bryant led a group of hospitalist physicians and advanced practice providers in the quick development of a Home Treatment Team (HTT) for patients with COVID-19 at high risk of severe disease. Algorithms, treatment plans and care scalation protocols were implemented in record time and improved continually through the pandemic. He developed relationships and collaborations with the ILI (influenza-like illness) Clinic and worked on monitoring the outcomes of this program. The outcomes of COVID-19 patients followed by the home treatment team were dramatically better than the national and regional averages, despite being high risk patients.

[More: Read our interviews with Bryant, Bradley Manning, MD, and Jeydith Guiterrez, MD, on the hospitalists’ response to COVID-19.]

Excellence in Quality Award—Kenneth Nepple, MD, and Caryn Berkowitz, MD

This award is given to an individual or team in recognition of outstanding quality of care provided to patients. Recipients will have demonstrated excellence in reportable measures of quality, benchmarked patient outcomes, or improvements in internally measured outcomes.

The work of Dr. Nepple and Dr. Berkowitz has improved the identification and management of malnutrition at UIHC and nationally. Their work has demonstrated a substantial benefit for patients, providers, and institution. For hospital inpatients, identification of medical comorbidities is an important measure of severity of illness and impacts both hospital reimbursement and risk adjustment for quality measures. Dr. Nepple and team initially used Vizient data to confirm that malnutrition (MN) was being under-diagnosed at academic medical centers. As a result, the UIHC MN identification workflow was re-designed to leverage informatics for better documentation. Dr. Berkowitz subsequently developed a multidisciplinary Advanced Nutrition inpatient consult service to help manage patients with malnutrition to directly improve patient outcomes.

Excellence in Our Workplace Award—Kevin Doerschug, MD

This award is given to a medical director whose leadership and innovation demonstrably improves the “practice life” and satisfaction of providers in the delivery of clinical care.

In his role as Medical Director of the MICU, Dr. Doerschug showed outstanding leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic. His actions represent the essence of what the “Excellence in our Workplace” award should acknowledge. While the pandemic response stressed many aspects of UI Health Care, these challenges reached their apex in the MICU. For more than a year, Dr. Doerschug stayed attuned to the working of the unit, but also to the well-being of the staff. He was keenly aware of the anxiety among caregivers; the tensions of working masked and shielded; the pressures related to sickness and cross-coverage; the trauma of caring for ill colleagues and family members; and the grief of dealing with preventable death. Kevin’s impact was felt by the nursing staff, advanced practice providers, respiratory therapists, physician trainees, and his faculty colleagues.

Best Consulting Provider Award—Dilek Ince, MD

This award is given to an individual in recognition of his or her outstanding consulting or specialized services to the inpatient and ambulatory surgery patients of UI Health Care.

Dr. Ince is very thorough and has expansive knowledge related to infectious diseases, particularly with immunocompromised patients. She is prompt and collegial. Many are comforted knowing she is on-board with extremely ill patients. In addition to her expertise, she contributed extensively during the COVID pandemic. [Read from April 2020: Ince leads Remdesivir clinical trial at UI Health Care.]

Quotes from her nomination:

“Dr. Ince is always willing to educate when consulted and never speaks down to anyone.”

“With the higher census of COVID during the pandemic, I remember calling on Dr. Ince for recommendations. And every time, whether it was early evening or late at night, she was extremely helpful.”

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