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VPMA Voice

What in the world is a VPMA?

January will mark the two-year anniversary of establishing the Office of the Vice President for Medical Affairs (VPMA). The position was established to give new life to University of Iowa Health Care–to more fully integrate the UI Carver College of Medicine, UI Hospitals and Clinics, and UI Physicians (the faculty practice plan) into one seamless, efficient organization.

Why do this? The purpose is to direct the collective teaching, research, and clinical resources of Iowa’s premier academic medical center–that’s us!–to greater excellence at every level. This is the meaning behind “One Vision. One Future.”

As the vice president for medical affairs, I want to ensure that we operate in an environment characterized by openness, transparency, and good communication. VPMA Voice is designed to make sure you are “in the loop” regarding our organizational priorities, challenges, and accomplishments.

Many of you participated in recent forums and learned about the budget challenges UI Health Care faces. Although much of the emphasis has been on UI Hospitals and Clinics, I want to make clear that we are addressing this concern as a single, united entity– UI Health Care.

But, for us to be successful, we need your help. We need your good ideas. We need your enthusiasm. We need your willingness to change, to try new things. You can start today by sending your ideas to vpma@uiowa.edu.

Signed, Jean Robillard

This is the first issue of VPMA Voice, a new publication from The Office of the Vice President for Medical Affairs. In the newsletter, Vice President for Medical Affairs Jean Robillard, MD, will share his thoughts on our organizational priorities, challenges, and accomplishments. VPMA Voice will be published weekly, both as an e-mail newsletter delivered directly to your Inbox and as a paper newsletter distributed at most Noon News locations.

Below are some of the questions and answers from recent Open Forums. Check the UI Health Care intranet, The Point, for video recordings of the forums and other questions and answers.

Question: Some of us have positions that are on hold. I would ask you to please make decisions as soon as possible about whether we can fill those lines. It’s very important to morale.

Answer: Every week we are reviewing requests to fill open positions to determine if there are positions that are absolutely critical, especially for frontline care givers. We are authorizing those recruitments. In some cases, we will be making re-assignments to respond to growth in volume. We will hold off hiring positions that are not critical to high quality, safe patient care.

Question: How has/will UI Health Care set priorities for reducing budgets by 5 percent? And are the Hospital and the College both reducing their budgets?

Answer: UI Health Care is evaluating a number of recom-mendations from managers. Our first priority for reducing expenses will be to focus on non-patient care-related expenses and non-labor expenses. Some areas will have less than a 5 percent reduction, while others may have more. Our goal is to achieve an overall savings of 5 percent. Implementation on some of these recommendations will start this week.

Yes, both the Hospital and the College are being asked to reduce expenses by an overall 5 percent.

 

This is a publication of UI Health Care