Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Schedule Doctor Appointments Without Picking Up a Phone

The world is changing and so is patients' expectations!

MedStar Medical Group recently partnered with, a free, web-based appointment scheduling tool. The goal is to provide patients with faster, easier access to doctors’ schedules and appointments. It allows patients to:

·         Find local doctors who take their insurance;
·         See their real-time availability, and;
·         Book appointments online.
·         Use the ZocDoc tool from your smart phone

You can use this tool to assist patients in scheduling doctor appointments or to set appointments for yourself or a loved one. Search for a doctor by:

·         Location
·         Specialty
·         Gender
·         Languages spoken

ZocDoc provides verified patient reviews, pictures of the doctor and/or office setting, and professional statements from the doctors themselves. Patients can complete their medical forms on ZocDoc prior to their visit to reduce in-office wait time. All these steps help alleviate stress and anxiety that can be associated with a doctor visit.

For more information or to see for yourself how it works, visit  

Thursday, September 11, 2014

ALS Ice Bucket Challenge--still going strong!

This month's FOCUS message with the link to my ice bucket challenge video has inspired many of you to send nice emails and videos of yourselves doing the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. We've enjoyed seeing your personal videos and encourage you to share them below with the MHRI family!

To start, we have one from our friends at MHRI's Office of Contracts Management nominating lots of other folks at MHRI. Don't forget...Once you are challenged you have 24 hours to do the challenge or donate! 

See their video here ( and post yours in the comments section below! 


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Get Involved and Make a Difference

On May 9th, several districts of the U.S. Postal Service conducted a food drive whereby people left a can or box of food at their mailbox.  That weekend, an army of volunteers came out to collect, transport, sort, and pack this food and then stock the shelves of food banks across the country.  Thousands of tons of food were collected in that single day; millions of meals were provided over the subsequent months, and not a penny was paid.
I had the pleasure of contributing to this experience as a volunteer doing some of that sorting, packing and stocking.  I did it with my family and some of my son’s friends from school at a food bank that was two miles from my house, which I never even knew existed.  I learned about a sector of my community that lives on the edge, is thankful for just one meal a day and worries about food for their children tomorrow. I also learned how much more we can do together, as a community, than any one of us can do alone.  While I gave just a few hours of my time that day, I got back an experience and new understanding that will last me a lifetime.
As we all get 'back to school' and into our family routines, it is a great time to think about 'giving back.'
I am proud that many of our MHRI  colleagues are leading the way by organizing volunteer teams for spirited activities and fun runs to raise money for medical research.  Here are a few - consider signing up for at least one this fall and bring your friends and family along! 

-Sprint Four The Cure

September 20, Potomac Parkway, Washington, DC
The Four Seasons Hotel’s 34th Annual Sprint Four the Cure is taking place this September 20, 2014! The 5k run/walk raises money to support cancer research at the Washington cancer Institute at MedStar Washington   Hospital Center

-American Diabetes Association: Step-out: Walk to Stop Diabetes

October 18, National Harbor
Join the MedStar Diabetes Institute Team and your MedStar colleague walkers from MWHC, MGUH and MHRI. Teams come in all sizes.This year we hope to field a large team to wave the MedStar flag on behalf of our patients living with diabetes. Whether you gather your friends, family, patients or coworkers you can team up with us to Stop Diabetes! and go to the MedStar Team Walk Center

-Super H 5K Run, Walk & Wheel

September 21, Tysons Sport & Health, McLean, VA
Participation supports the MedStar NRH Adaptive Sports Programs which helps children and adults with physical disabilities to pursue healthy, active lifestyles through recreational and competitive sports.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

MHRI Burn and Surgical Research Lab Receives Donation from Montgomery County Fire Fighters

On Thursday, August 21, 2014, the Montgomery County Career Fire Fighters (MCCFF) visited the George Hyman Research Building at MedStar WHC to present a check to the Burn and Surgical Research Lab.  The check came from the proceeds from the MCCFF 41st Annual Golf Tournament, which was held June 2, 2014 at the Rattlewood Golf Course in Mt. Airy, MD. 

Many sponsors, charitable donors, and golfers supported this event, which in turn, allowed the MCCFF Golf Committee to support the Burn Lab with the money raised.  They have been long time supporters of the Burn Center at MWHC and the Burn and Surgical Research Program.

After the check presentation, Dr. Jeffrey Shupp conducted a tour of the Firefighters' Burn and Surgical Research Laboratory (FBSRL) in the Hyman Research Building (see pictures) and a brief reception held to thank the MCCFF for their generous donation and continued support of our research program.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Walking Meeting

Its a beautiful day today.  For many in DC and across Maryland it is the first day of school and it brought back childhood memories (growing up in the northeast) where the first day of school was often (at least in my mind) a clear blue day, 75 degrees and low humidity.

Well, today I had a day packed with back-to-back meetings at UTC in my office..... so what a wonderful surprise when Dr Aroda said 'come on, I want to show you something.'  She brought me to the 3rd floor where there is a terrace that surrounds the building and we had a 'walking meeting.'  It was great!  I logged over 4000 steps and we walked almost 2 miles - oh yes, and it was a very productive meeting too!

Thanks Vanita for getting me out of the office!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Presidential Medicine

Sometimes I hear about cool stuff our investigators are doing and am appreciative when I can share them with you.

Recently,  Munish Goyal MD, FACEP, the Research Director of Emergency Intensive Care in the Department of Emergency Medicine at MedStar Washington Hospital Center (MWHC), Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at the Georgetown University School of Medicine and an active MHRI investigator, shared his 'experience' with me.

Munish recently was part of a presidential detail (in the white polo shirt) accompanying President Bill Clinton on a humanitarian visit to Central America and Haiti. He served as the president's traveling physician, which is a common practice.  While (thankfully) his services were not needed, he was able to apply his expertise in emergency medicine to prepare for a type of healthcare delivery most of us don't get to even think about.