Leahy initiative

ZACH DYER
STAFF WRITER

The University’s Leahy Center has set itself up with another lofty goal for this semester: to get 1,888 volunteer hours. This is the second time that the center has attempted such a goal; in the fall semester the volunteers of the center collectively worked for 1,961 hours and six minutes, surpassing their original goal of 1,888 hours. University graduate student David Linares, who is also president of the center’s advisory board, is confident that the volunteers will be able to pull through and meet this goal again this semester.
“I expect all student volunteers to contribute as they have done in the past. Typically the numbers of service hours recorded in the spring are lower than in the fall,” Linhares said. “Knowing that, though, it should be more of a reason to volunteer knowing that we will be beating this spring trend. I’m optimistic that all volunteers, including myself, will be able to accomplish the challenge and the 1,888 goal once again.”
Linhares gives credit for last semester’s success to the students.
“They support the vision; there’s that commonality in thinking, that we are all here striving for the same goal of being an instrumental part of an organization that is dedicated to helping [the underserved] achieve, improve and maintain a quality of life that is consistent with optimal health and wellness,” Linhares said.
Over intersession, the clinical branch of the Leahy Center began to firm up its newest project: starting an Electronic Medical Record (EMR). There were multiple projects taking place that all centered around the implementation of this EMR and Linhares along with fellow Students Hayden Strickland, David Linhares, Robert Sawyer and Kendrick Monestime are the principle organizers of the project. Mr. Joseph Fisne is the MHA Faculty IT mentor and has devoted his time to ensuring the success of this project.
Joseph Fisne has worked with the clinic to mentor the administrators and students with the implementation of the EMR. With his help, the committee has been working diligently to form steering and operating committees.
Center Director Andrea Mantione MSN, CRNP felt it important to begin this project with a mission statement.
“As operations committee we came up with a mission statement and vision statements. These will guide us through the process when combined with the procedure already developed,” Mantione said.
The purpose of the EMR project, according to the mission statement is “to improve the overall clinical and administrative efficiency while maintaining high quality healthcare, and assuring the privacy and security of our community patients.”
The EMR team hopes “to become a model for efficiency and sustainability within the free medical clinic systems” while simultaneously “[empowering] health professions students by interprofessional education,” according to their vision statement.
“Because the mission of the Leahy Center is twofold, to educate University of Scranton students in their profession and in service while also serving the community, the EMR project is a student project to teach them,” Mantione said.
Through the implementation of an EMR, the clinic hopes to be held to the same standard as other healthcare practices. It will enable the doctors to have a more encompassing view of the patient, while not taking away from the quality of care that these patients will be receiving. So as to not subtract from the interaction between the patient and the doctor, Sawyer developed a curriculum where students have been in class, working to become experts at being scribes.  They have been learning medical terminology and the intricacies within EMR in order to become proficient in it. Sawyer has used his past experience as a scribe to write policy and procedures for the scribes to follow, ensuring a high level of quality in all that the center does. The students Sawyer trains will be in the room with the doctor taking notes on a computer directly into the Electronic Medical Record, so the medical provider is not encumbered by having to take an accurate log of the vist.  It enables the provider’s attention to be one hundred percent on the patient.
The clinic is very excited about the implementation of the EMR, which tentatively scheduled for a kick-off in June.  This will work to improve the clinic’s patient safety, reduce medical errors, and improve the overall medical organization efficiently.  Bringing this new initiative to the Leahy Community Health and Family Center shows their devotion to the Jesuit ideals, specifically Magis. In accordance with this Jesuit ideal, the members of the center will go above and beyond to serve the Scranton community in as many ways as they can.
The Leahy Center has many more projects on the horizon, and with these projects the goal of 1,888 hours of service should not be hard to attain.

Contact the writer:
zach.dyer@scranton.edu

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