May 12, 2020 Department of Pediatrics Newsletter
COVID-19 Heroes Special EditionMay 12, 2020
Dear Faculty and Friends,
During this unprecedented time, it is important that we recognize the amazing efforts of so many of our faculty, trainees and staff. As we’ve confronted this pandemic, all of you have made countless acts of volunteerism and sacrifice – THANK YOU. I am proud of the way our Department and our colleagues at Children’s Hospital Colorado and across the Anschutz Medical Campus have rallied to support each other.
Here are the people, as recognized by their peers, who are going above and beyond in their efforts to combat the pandemic and continue to foster our unrivaled culture of collaboration. Here are this week’s “Coronavirus Heroes.”
Antonia Chiesa, MD (Associate Professor, Section of Child Abuse and Neglect), Kempe Center Staff, and the Kempe Child Protection Team
Nominated by Kathryn Wells, MD
Why Antonia, Kempe Center Staff, and the Kempe Child Protection Team?
Dr. Antonia Chiesa put to use her incredible leadership skills (bolstered by her experience in the first cohort of CHCO's Physician Leadership Program) to convert the first-ever designated provider training for the Child Abuse Response and Evaluation (CARE) Network to a virtual experience on May 3-4, 2020. This project is a new state-funded initiative to create a network of healthcare providers around Colorado dedicated to serving children impacted by child maltreatment. The Kempe Center was designated the Resource Center under a contract with the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment, serving to recruit, train, and mentor participants. While originally scheduled to be held in person, COVID-19 forced the training into a rigorous virtual experience comprised of facilitated case-based learning delivered utilizing Zoom. The training was a huge success with 46 registered participants due to the tremendous support of Kempe Center staff as well as the facilitation and training expertise of the Kempe Child Protection Team.
Department of Pediatrics Administrative Team
Nominated by Andy Sirotnak, MD
Why the DOP Administrative Team?
I want to recognize and send a shoutout, howl-out, and big virtual hug to all on our administrative team: our DFA, business managers, HR, payroll, grants, contracts, business development, finance, Office of Academic and Faculty affairs, webmaster, special project managers, staff assistants – everyone.
The people supporting our Department are truly incredible and are often not seen by the faculty at large and as spread out as we are. During this intense time, they have continued their hard work on our behalf with dedication and tenacity. Thank you all so much!
Derrek Massanari, MD, MPH (Senior Instructor and Director of Urgent Care, Section of Emergency Medicine)
Nominated by Mark Roback, MD
As director of the pediatrician group, Derrek has gone "above and beyond" in his efforts to guide our pediatrician emergency providers during this unique time. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in significant changes in our staffing and scheduling. In collaboration with our schedulers, Derrek has worked tirelessly to equitably redistribute shifts and modify schedules. He is always available for questions and remains a strong advocate for his group as we navigate the ever-evolving waters of this pandemic.
Janette Prokop, DNP, CPNP-AC, FNP-BC (Senior Instructor and Director of Advanced Practice Providers, Section of Emergency Medicine)
Nominated by Mark Roback, MD
As Director of the APP group, Janette has worked tirelessly to advocate for the providers in her group in the face of significant COVID-19 pandemic-related challenges. Her efforts to work with our schedulers to ensure that our APPs have access to as many clinical hours as possible and to protect our high-risk providers is greatly appreciated. She is to be commended for always "going the extra mile" for the APPs by answering their questions and guiding them through the many changes that have resulted from to these unique times.
Robin Deterding, MD (Professor and Head, Section of Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine; Director, Breathing Institute)
Nominated by Mark Brown, MD, and Stan Szefler, MD
Dr. Deterding very quickly recognized the multiple challenges COVID-19 would place on the section and immediately organized teams with specific charges that resulted in a comprehensive, coordinated effort to keep all team members safe – especially those at high risk – while enabling a nimble response that significantly reduced impacts to the clinical and research missions. She also took steps to foster team cohesion and well-being, initiating weekly virtual town halls and mobilizing the mental-health professionals within the team to create virtual coffee breaks, virtual happy hours, and other team-building/maintaining measures. She has consistently been transparent about the financial impacts of COVID-19, doing so only based on solid information and avoiding unnecessary team anxiety from incomplete or inaccurate information. Her leadership throughout this crisis has been exemplary.
Wesley Gallegos, PA (Instructor, Section of General Pediatrics)
Nominated by Maya Bunik, MD, MSPH; Christina Suh, MD; Daniel Nicklas, MD; and Maureen Lenssen, PNP
Wesley has been one of the strongest members of our front-line team in this pandemic. He joined our faculty last October as an Advanced Practice Provider when we had just moved to the Health Pavilion. He jumps in to help with everything, he has always been flexible and reliable, and does this all with a great attitude. He has a positive, calm approach, and he has embraced car screening, secondary triage and telehealth. It seems like he has been part of our team for so much longer than six months. Wesley is always kind and caring in this stressful time with every member of the team.
Congratulations to all these individuals for their outstanding contributions. Thanks as well to the nominators for sharing these stories and for your important role in helping recognize and support this work.
Please continue to share your recommendations for next week’s “Coronavirus Heroes” by submitting a web-based nomination form. (Note: Nominations are processed at 8 a.m. on Fridays, so submissions sent in after that time will be in next week’s edition.)
For these and other exciting Department of Pediatrics news stories, please visit our Pediatrics News web page.
Stephen R. Daniels, MD, PhD
Professor and Chair
Department of Pediatrics | University of Colorado School of Medicine
Pediatrician-in-Chief | Children’s Hospital Colorado