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CenterView: March 02, 2015

CenterView is published every other week, and is the internal publication of the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC). Content features news of interest for and about Medical Center faculty, staff, and students. Content may be reprinted with appropriate credit.

Ideas for stories are welcome and may be submitted by email to Bruce Coleman.


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Candace Cole (left), a reporter with WJTV in Jackson, discusses plans for UMMC's future with Dr. LouAnn Woodward, the Medical Center's new vice chancellor for health affairs and dean of the School of Medicine.
Candace Cole (left), a reporter with WJTV in Jackson, discusses plans for UMMC's future with Dr. LouAnn Woodward, the Medical Center's new vice chancellor for health affairs and dean of the School of Medicine.

Woodward, in driver’s seat, plans to step on the gas

After some seven months of searching and weighing the prospects, the university has chosen Dr. LouAnn Woodward as the Medical Center’s new vice chancellor for health affairs and dean of the School of Medicine. The Mississippi native has been part of UMMC for at least a quarter century, first as a medical student and now as its leader.

Hospital expansion will 'transform' health care for Mississippi's children

Children’s of Mississippi is planning a “transformational” expansion project that includes extensive renovations to Batson Children’s Hospital and a new building next door. Administrators say the project will make room for growing numbers of patients and subspecialty services and will likely include pediatric-dedicated space for imaging, a neonatal intensive care unit, children’s heart services, clinic space and a new lobby area.

Class Act: Standardized patients sharpen students’ clinical skills

Known as “patient actors,” “medical actors,” “simulated patients,” or “standardized patients (SPs),” they have a unique dramatic role: to portray someone with a medical problem – for students, not the stage. UMMC employs about 70 SPs, whose training gives aspiring, and sometimes practicing, health-care providers more tools to reach their ultimate goal: helping patients who aren’t acting.

Turning up the volume: Patient numbers reaching all-time highs

Whether they’re being admitted or they're having outpatient treatment, adult patients are filling UMMC’s hospitals and clinics to capacity. Ditto for steadily increasing volume in the ED and every patient-care setting. It’s a nice problem to have, but it brings staffing, equipment and capacity issues that strain the system. The challenge is to work with available resources, yet still deliver quality care.

Dr. Charles O’Mara: Relationship-builder on, off campus

In his role as associate vice chancellor for clinical affairs, Dr. Charles O’Mara focuses on key areas including strategic planning, relationships with hospitals in the community, external collaborations to advance health care, and ensuring efficiency in UMMC’s operations and facilities management. The Jackson native brings a wealth of experience to the post.

CDDR-sponsored study hints at future treatment for autism spectrum disorders

A team of Mississippi and California researchers have managed to prove something scientists have hoped to be true about the brain.