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Meet the IT/HealthONE Management Team

HealthONE project directors working on the 7th floor of University Tower, from left, Liz Zibell, Kathy Noel, Carolyn Orrell, and Christopher Carroll. (Photo by Kristin Wallace)

An essential part of HealthONE’s electronic health record (EHR) implementation process, set to go live on April 28, 2018, is the ongoing work of UConn Health IT Department’s two assistant vice presidents and director, and four HealthONE project directors in collaboration with many analysts, architects and engineers.

This management team works closely with the HealthONE leadership team of Denise Purington, BSN, interim CIO; Dr. Dirk Stanley, CMIO; and newly arrived Bryan Kerr, HealthONE’s interim assistant vice president.

The managers oversee the planning, implementation and management process of various information technology needs and HealthONE’s specific EPIC applications.

We would like to introduce you to the IT and HealthONE management team and hear what they think are the ultimate perks and benefits of UConn Health’s upcoming EHR system.

Robert Darby, AVP of IT Strategic Projects and Clinical Systems manages the HealthONE’s team charged with helping to ensure data from existing systems and those systems that are not scheduled to be replaced by EPIC are incorporated into the HealthONE system and available to clinicians and support staff within the HealthONE applications. He also oversees the teams who are developing the necessary operational reports and analytic and business intelligence tools that will be used to manage the business unit, support quality reporting and business and clinical transformation. Some of the tools they use from EPIC include Bridges, Data Courier and Cogito.  In addition to the HealthONE team, Darby manages the Clinical Application Support Team, Project Managers and Clinical Informatics Teams that support all non-HealthONE applications and clinical implementations that play a vital role in the HealthONE implementation project.  Along with over 9 years at UConn Health he has 20 years of health care IT experience in implementation, support, management and integration of clinical systems and environments.
Best perk of HealthONE? Moving from a best of breed (many individual systems) systems approach to a single unified UConn Health enterprise solution.
Number one benefit of HealthONE for UConn Health? Gaining access to information stored within a single database will allow us to act quicker to provider better care to our patients as well as better quality reporting for our patient population and research partners.

Michael Catrini, AVP of Enterprise Technology Systems manages the HealthONE team responsible for connecting our data center to the EPIC data center in Wisconsin. He also manages the team that will ensure the correct HealthONE applications and equipment are installed on thousands of end user devices across the organization. He brings over 20 years of clinical IT experience to the project, including two previous enterprise EHR installations.
Best perk? Reducing the number of applications needed to treat patients.  
Number one benefit? Speed of access to the patient data. The users will be able to quickly reach the correct data at the correct time during patient care.

Carrie Gray, director of Information Security oversees the HealthONE Security Coordinators responsible for building, maintaining and educating users about the security of the HealthONE system. Additionally, she manages the Information Security team responsible for establishing and coordinating the development, management and implementation of information security technologies, policies, standards and procedures for protecting UConn Health’s confidential data and critical systems.
Best perk? The ability to access multiple functions with a single user ID.
Number one benefit? A streamlined approach to granting access to the system based on a user’s responsibilities.

The four HealthONE project directors from left, Carolyn Orrell, Christopher Carroll, Kathy Noel, and Liz Zibell. (Photo by Kristin Wallace)

Liz Zibell, RN, MSN oversees HealthONE’s Clinical applications named ASAP (emergency department), Willow (pharmacy), Stork (obstetrics and labor and delivery) along with the Orders, Clinical Documentation and Infection Control modules and functions. For this role she brings more than 11 years of EHR experience. She has previously managed the clinical informatics teams at UConn Health and served as a clinical transformation specialist for the Cerner Corporation. Her nursing background includes experience in the NICU, pediatrics, home health, and clinical research settings.
Best perk? The strength of the clinical team and their skill sets which will enhance the HealthONE application.
Number one benefit? A safer and more robust data environment for our patients and staff. We will all get there together.

Carolyn Orrell, MBA is responsible for HealthONE’s Access and Revenue Cycle applications which are named Cadence (scheduling), Grand Central (transport, bed planning), Prelude (registration), Resolute HB and PB (hospital billing and professional billing and claims), and HIM/Identity (Health Information Management). She has over 20 years of experience in healthcare IT. She has served in various project management and leadership roles for the implementation of clinical and revenue cycle financial systems and EHRs. In addition, she also attained her Six Sigma Green Belt from the Juran Institute.
Best perk? The new functionality and streamlined processes.
Number one benefit? The EPIC functionality and new third party solutions that will benefit our patients, providers, and staff.

Kathy Noel leads the Ambulatory applications for HealthONE. Her scope of responsibility spans physician office workflows in Ambulatory and Orthopedics, Healthy Planet (population health), MyChart and CareLink (patient and community engagement applications), Canto and Haiku (mobility applications), and Research Studies. She began her IT healthcare journey 28 years ago at the Hospital of St. Raphael, then St. Francis, and arrived nearly 8 years ago at UConn Health as a project manager for the rollout of NextGen. She has managed the development of many clinical applications across the continuum with insight into workflows of many hospital departments.
Best perk? The integration the HealthONE system will provide to connect all the dots between our currently separate systems and the ‘one-stop-shopping’ advantages this gives to our clinicians and our patients.
Number one benefit? HealthONE will provide us with transparency and reporting that has previously been unattainable.

Christopher M. Carroll, MBA, PMP directs HealthONE’s Ancillary applications. He oversees the applications called Beacon (oncology), Beaker (lab), Radiant (radiology and cardiology) and the Optime/Anesthesia (operating rooms and anesthesia) modules for HealthONE. Chris has been with UConn Health’s IT department for the last 7 years. Prior to HealthONE, he was project manager of numerous initiatives including Banner and NextGen. Chris has experience as a consultant, as well as holding various positions across healthcare, insurance, higher education, administrative and financial organizations.
Best perk? The integration of so much clinical information in one place will streamline many workflows.
Number one benefit? It will readily provide patient information to the fingertips of those providing patient care and to those ancillary areas performing tests and procedures.

We encourage you to reach out to any of these leaders with questions or concerns. We also want to thank all the IT and HealthONE team members who are working to deliver the HealthONE system by April 2018 and all those in the organization who have participated in design sessions. Without everyone’s involvement we couldn’t have gotten as far as we have today.

Active Shooter Awareness

UConn Health leadership and staff participated on June 7 in a U.S. Department of Homeland Security FEMA led tabletop drill exercise to further enhance its response to an emergency situation such as an active shooter.

“As a campus we need to make sure we are always as prepared as possible for a natural or man-made disaster such as workplace violence that can occur at any time or anywhere. This is why we drill regularly at UConn Health,” says Bryan Gran, the new emergency management specialist at UConn Health who led the interactive discussion-based exercise.

Institutional representatives hailed from across the departments of fire, police, hospital, facilities, communications, nutrition and emergency departments at UConn Health. In addition, representatives participated from the Connecticut State Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security, the West Hartford Fire Department and seven other institutions from across the country.

“Very few people are trained to know what to do for their personal protection in an active shooter situation,” says Joe Curreri, chief of UConn Health Police. This is why since 2014 UConn Health has made active shooter awareness and education mandatory for all new employees and students during their onboarding orientation.

Curreri added, “Education about active shooters is not designed to alarm employees, but to make them more aware of the possibility of this type of event occurring whether at work or in their day-to-day lives and to make them more aware of their response options should they find themselves in this situation.”

In fact, a study performed by Johns Hopkins Office of Critical Event Preparedness found that there were more than 150 hospital-related shootings nationwide from 2000 to 2011, in more than 40 states, and with more than 235 people killed or injured. Unfortunately, hospital related shootings have been on the rise since the study was completed.

Should you ever find yourself in harm’s way take proactive steps to protect yourself and help save more lives.

Important Tips to Remember:

  • Be aware: To help prevent an event’s occurrence, make sure to report any suspicious warning signs of a potential active shooter or violent person to the Police immediately by calling 9-1-1.
  • Know the Emergency Codes: Remember to wear your UConn Health identification card at all times so you can quickly refer to the back of it for any announced emergency hospital codes. A ‘Silver’ alert stands for an active weapon threat.
  • Remember to ‘Run, Hide, Fight’: These three action may make the difference in your survival during an active shooter situation.) Run: Try to escape or evacuate the active shooter’s area if you can to safety. Only you are important so leave any belongings behind. As you run verbally alert others to prevent their harm and call 9-1-1 once you are safe.

2.) Hide: If you can’t escape the active shooter’s area, find a place to hide behind a locked or barricaded door or even behind a large object. Remain quiet and remember to silence your phone.

3.) Fight: As a last resort, if you can’t run or hide, fight with aggression against the active shooter assailant whether alone or as a group.
For more tips on emergency preparedness, visit: https://health.uconn.edu/police/crime-prevention/.


Second Project Search Graduation Slated June 2

Kristin Sadowsky (second from left), an intern with Favarh Project SEARCH, learns administrative support tasks from her mentors Michelle Thompson , Angela Rizzolo and skills trainer Pam Applewhite-Miller. (Photo by R. Wright)

Nine interns with Project SEARCH, an innovative program designed to prepare young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) for careers, not just jobs, will be graduating from the program at a special “bridge ceremony” on Friday, June 2.

Project SEARCH is the most successful youth transition program in the nation at placing young adults with IDD in gainful employment. Connecticut’s only program, a partnership between Favarh – The Arc of the Farmington Valley – and UConn Health, is located at the UConn Health Farmington campus. At the program, young people with IDD are demonstrating that when given the opportunity and proper supports to succeed, they can and do exceed, often beyond our preconceived notions of what is possible.

Vanessa Flenke (center), an intern with Favarh Project SEARCH, learns about delivering excellent patient care at UMG Ophthalmology from her mentors Cheryl Berry and Vivian Holly. (Photo by Ania Scott)

Project SEARCH was founded in 1996 at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. The program is a one-year, unpaid internship program designed for students either in their last year of high school or graduates in their first year out of school.

The largest private employer in Canton with 275 employees, Favarh was founded in 1958 by eight local families who all wanted a better life for their children with intellectual disabilities. Today, Favarh is a local chapter of the Arc, the world’s largest community-based organization for people with intellectual, physical and developmental disabilities. Favarh supports more than 350 children, young adults, adults, seniors and families throughout the Greater Farmington Valley area and beyond.

Media contact:  Bill Neagus,  wneagus@favarh.org

Husky Heroes Raise Funds for Cancer Research and Patient Services


Team UConn Health Husky Heroes has been busy this spring sponsoring and fundraising two important local events: Connecticut Breast Health Initiative’s 2017 Race in the Park on May 13 in New Britain and the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life of Farmington on May 20Donations for both events totaled $6,447 raised by 54 team members made up of survivors, staff, caregivers, families, and friends.

The Race in the Park raised $3,069 to fund important breast cancer research and education projects in the state. Participants stopping at the UConn Health table were introduced to the Beekley Imaging Center, received information about the patient-centered Breast Program at the Carole and Ray Neag Comprehensive Cancer Center, and breast cancer survivors had the opportunity to consider participation in a CT BHI grant funded research project. Team members spent a great deal of time interacting with other participants at the event and one of the highlights was when Julia Tannenbaum, daughter of Dr. Susan Tannenbaum, read her poem “Pink Is More Than A Color” at the Survivor Breakfast.

At Relay for Life, $3,378 was raised which will help the American Cancer Society fund groundbreaking cancer research, crucial patient care services, and prevention and early detection programs. This is the most that the team has ever raised for Relay. The Farmington Valley Relay exceeded their goal in raising almost $480,000. Team members dropped by throughout the day to walk laps, participate in activities, and show their spirit at the UConn tent. Dr. Upendra Hegde gave an inspirational speech at opening ceremonies.


New Patio Opens at Munson Road

An ice cream social and ribbon-cutting unveiling the new patio area outside the cafeteria at Munson Road was held Monday. The Campus Planning, Design and Construction folks tell us the building won architectural awards when it was first built and the decks were an integral part of the design. But after 50 years of use, the decks had maintenance and water leakage issues. The walk out areas on all levels were eliminated except the cafeteria level. The new patio is slightly larger than the original and has seating for 60 people.  It was also raised 7 inches to the cafeteria floor level making it more accessible from both the cafeteria and the lobby. The patio layout pays tribute to the original roof ponds and the sleek stainless steel cable rail system was chosen to complement the buildings lines and is maintenance free. Low maintenance plantings are also included in the design.

2017 Health, Safety and Environmental Fair Photos

Football was the theme of this year’s Health, Safety and Environmental Fair held in the Food Court April 7. Many UConn Health departments took part offering giveaways and games. Some of the highlights included visits from Miss Connecticut, Miss Chrysanthemum, the UConn husky dog Jonathan XIV and the UConn Husky mascot.  View the photo gallery to see if you recognize anyone you know.

It’s National Doctors’ Day!

We want to give a heartfelt “thank you” on this National Doctors’ Day to all of our approximately 400 doctors who have dedicated their life’s work to caring for others. In honor of the day, clinicians were invited to share in refreshments and UConn John Dempsey Hospital CEO Anne Diamond and other hospital administrators were on hand to say a personal thank you and give out special mementos.

The first Doctors’ Day observance was held on March 30, 1933, by the Barrow County Alliance in Winder, Georgia. The Alliance picked that day because it was the anniversary of the first administration of anesthesia by Georgia native Dr. Crawford W. Long in 1842. The first observance included the mailing of cards to physicians and their wives, flowers placed on graves of deceased doctors – including Dr. Long, and a formal dinner.

You may have noticed some of our doctors wearing red carnations today. Through the years, the red carnation has been used as the symbol of Doctors’ Day. Because of the flower’s spicy fragrance, it was often used in seasoning dishes “to preserve the body, both in mind and spirit.”

Congress designated March 30, 1991, as National Doctors’ Day. The enactment of this resolution enables the citizens of the United States to publicly show appreciation for the role of physicians in caring for the sick, advancing medical knowledge, and promoting good health.

Roberta Luby to Retire in May

After fourteen years with UConn Health, assistant vice president for HealthONE Roberta Luby, will retire on May 1. (Photo by Frank Barton)

After fourteen years with UConn Health, assistant vice president for HealthONE Roberta Luby, will retire on May 1. (Photo by Frank Barton)

After fourteen years with UConn Health, in Strategic Projects, Clinical Systems and currently as assistant vice president for HealthONE, Roberta Luby will retire on May 1.

“By far, HealthONE – replacing our existing aging clinical infrastructure – is the most interesting and challenging thing I have done here,” said Roberta. “From first presentation in 2012, to RFP in June of 2015, to where we are today – about a year from go-live – it’s been a ride I will never forget.”

“Roberta is a proven leader who knows how to get things done,” said Carolle Andrews, chief administrative officer. “We will miss her smile, her steady hand, and the wealth of experience she brought to critical organizational projects.”

Senior leadership is working to develop an interim plan and more details will be forthcoming in the next few weeks, according to Denise Purington, interim chief information officer.

“HealthOne is a massive undertaking with ramifications across the organization,” said Dr. Andy Agwunobi, “we really appreciate Roberta’s role in getting us well down the road toward a high quality implementation by April of next year.”

“We have an extremely talented and committed HealthONE team in place, poised to achieve a wonderful transformation. I look forward to seeing the results after go-live and the impact it will have on all parts of the organization,” Roberta concluded.

The Pulse Marks One Year Anniversary

A night view of University Tower at UConn John Dempsey Hospital (Janine Gelineau/UConn Health) Commercial Shoot, March 9-10, 2016 Health, Safety and Environment Fair 2016 UConn Health building An email inbox Womens Center Sees First Patients WE-BELIEVE-IN-POSSIBLE New Academic Rotunda Building 20, constructed in 1990 for extra office space at UConn Health, in the process of being demolished. (Photo by Janine Gelineau)
Hard to believe, but it’s been a year since we posted our first issue of The Pulse. We told you then that our goal was to highlight what really makes UConn Health tick and we’ve done our best to do that each and every week. A whole lot has happened here since we posted Issue 1 so we wanted to take a few moments to stroll down memory lane and present you with a visual reminder of some of the major milestones.

Phishing Tips: Beware of Email Links and Attachments

Recently, some Connecticut state employees responded to a well-crafted “phishing” email directing them to click on a link to what appeared to be the CORE-CT website in order to retrieve their W-2.  This was a fake website, and the employees who followed the link and entered user ID and password unwittingly gave the perpetrators access to their CORE-CT login credentials and all of the personal information contained there, such as Social Security number, home address, birth date, etc.

Armed with this information cybercriminals can file a phony income tax return in your name, open credit card accounts and attempt to steal funds in your bank accounts or retirement savings accounts.

Here are some tips to protect yourself from phishing:

How to Spot a Phishing Email

Phishing is a deceptive attempt to pose as a reputable entity or person in electronic communications, such as email, IM or social networking.

Unofficial “From” Address.  Look for a sender’s email address that is slightly different (but similar to) an official email address.  The most recent phishing attack came from an e-mail address that read: donotreply@ct.gov <ssellick@tbaytel.net>.  The second part of the email address shows that it came from outside the system.

Urgent Call for Action. Cyber criminals include urgent “calls to action” in emails to get you to react immediately. Be wary of emails containing phrases like “your account will be closed,” “your account has been compromised,” or “urgent action required.” The cybercriminal is taking advantage of your concern to trick you into providing confidential information immediately.

Generic Greetings. Cyber criminals send thousands of phishing emails at a time. They may have your email address, but they seldom have your name. Be skeptical of an email sent with generic greetings, such as “Dear Customer” or “Dear Member.” The most recent attack targeted our state’s Enterprise Resource Planning system Core-CT.

Link to a Fake Website. To trick you into disclosing your user name and password, cyber criminals often include a link to a fake web site that looks like (sometimes exactly like) the sign-in page of a legitimate web site. Just because a site includes a company’s logo or looks like the real page doesn’t mean it is! Logos and web site layouts are easy to copy. You can detect a fraud by using your mouse to “hover” over the link with your cursor.  This will reveal the website to which you are being directed (and it may not be the one you expected). The best practice is to refrain from CLICKING ANY LINKS IN EMAIL.  Navigate to the site by your normal means.

Legitimate Links Mixed with Fake Links. Cyber criminals sometimes include authentic links in their spoof pages, such as to the genuine privacy policy and terms of service pages for the site they’re mimicking. These authentic links are mixed in with links to a fake phishing web site in order to make the spoof site appear more realistic.

Other Characteristics of Phishing Emails:

  • Spelling errors, poor grammar, or inferior graphics.
  • Requests for personal information such as your password, Social Security number, or bank account or credit card number. Legitimate companies will never ask you to verify or provide confidential information through an unsolicited email.
  • Attachments (which might contain viruses or keystroke loggers, which record what you type).

What to Do if You Are a Victim of a Phishing Email.

If you have clicked on a suspicious email link and feel your personal identifiable information may have been compromised, here are a few steps you can take to protect yourself.

  • Change your passwords for all employer software systems, and all personal bank, retirement and financial accounts.
  • If you have not already done so, register your financial and banking accounts for online access only and choose challenging security questions with answers that only you would know.
  • Regularly review your bank, credit card, retirement and financial account(s) for any unauthorized activity.
  • Regularly review your credit report for any unauthorized activity. Under federal law, you are entitled to one free copy every 12 months.  You may obtain a copy by calling 877-322-8228 or online at annualcreditreport.com;
  • Learn more; by visiting the Federal Trade Commission’s website at ftc.gov/credit.

 The Department of Administrative Services will be introducing a new Cyber Security Awareness training program soon.  It will include further information on how to use email safely.  If you are suspicious about any email that you receive, contact the IT Help Center at x4400 or via email: helpdesk@uchc.edu