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New Exchange Program Helps HMHEB Employees “Walk a Mile” in Each Other’s Shoes
05/16/2007

BEDFORD, Texas – To help foster teamwork and understanding between Harris Methodist H•E•B Hospital's Materials Management department and the hospital's nursing units, the two groups have developed a special exchange program called “Walk a Mile in My Shoes.” The program aims to increase awareness of the pressures faced daily by both groups to help participants build a sense of camaraderie and appreciation to ensure patients get the best care possible.

Each week, an employee from Materials Management, which handles all of the hospital's purchasing and supply needs, works with a nurse or patient care technician (PCT) from one of the nursing floors for one hour. The nurse or PCT learns to juggle the myriad of phone calls, urgent supply requests and reams of paperwork that Materials Management handles every day, while the staff member from Materials accompanies a nurse as he or she talks with patients, takes vital signs and prepares for new patients. With anywhere from five to 30 patients on each unit and 5,000 supply requests filled daily, it can be quite an eye-opening experience for both parties.

“We all have a tendency to see things from our perspective and corner of the world,” said Cathy Lazier, director of Materials Management. “Once we step into someone else's shoes, our understanding improves significantly and we can better appreciate each other's responsibilities and challenges.”

“I enjoyed each and every one of the employees in Materials Management, and I learned some new things. I am thankful that they are there so we have the supplies to do our job and take care of our patients,” said Megan Carlock, PCT, from Tower 3, a medical/surgical unit. “They help out the whole hospital and for that I am thankful to them.”

Since “Walk a Mile” began in September, more than 40 exchanges have been made, and feedback from both sides of the aisle has been overwhelmingly positive. Now, the nursing units are planning to expand the program to include Pharmacy, the Emergency Department and Admissions.

About Harris Methodist H•E•B Hospital
Harris Methodist H•E•B Hospital, an affiliate of Texas Health Resources, is a 284-bed, acute-care facility serving Northeast Tarrant County since 1973. Services provided at Harris Methodist H•E•B Hospital include outpatient surgery, women's services, a level III neonatal intensive care unit, a dedicated oncology care unit, neurosurgery, cardiovascular surgery and a dedicated cardiac care unit, cardiac rehabilitation, physical medicine and rehabilitation, occupational health services, psychiatric and addiction treatment and pediatrics.

About Texas Health Resources
Texas Health Resources is one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health care delivery systems in the United States and the largest in North Texas in terms of patients served. THR controls 13 affiliated hospitals and a medical research organization, and is a corporate member or partner in seven additional hospitals and surgery centers. THR’s family of hospitals includes Harris Methodist Hospitals, Arlington Memorial Hospital and Presbyterian Healthcare System.  For more information about Texas Health Resources, visit http://www.texashealth.org/.

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