RIC-Matters 2015-01-28 - Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

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RIC-Matters 2015-01-28

Quote of the Week

"Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential.”

Winston Churchill

Back Issues

To find previous issues, go to our Index of RIC Matters back issues.


New Executive Chef Cooking Up Exciting Menu Changes

Armando Serrano, RIC’s new Executive Chef, is planning to dish up an array of tasty new items for the Sprout Café, including more healthy choices and specialty-themed foods.

“The focal point is healthier dining,” Serrano says. “We try to cook healthy for the patients, of course, but we are also trying to accommodate those who are coming to the Café.”

Serrano, who has 18 years of experience as a professional chef, including seven in health care, will expand menu choices to reflect the diversity of our patients and employees. “This is a unique facility and we have a lot of diversity and so our menu will try to reflect every region,” he says.

Serrano developed his passion for cooking thanks to his mom. Among the favorites she taught him to make were paella and chicken parmesan. “Both my parents worked full time and my mom used to put all the ingredients in small containers for me,” he says. “And then she would leave instructions.”

The menus will be seasonal, and each month Serrano plans to introduce a seasonal table featuring ingredients that he’ll incorporate into dishes. For example, in February, the seasonal items include dark chocolate and peppers. “Some of our recipes will be made with dark chocolate, like a mole sauce, for example,” he says.

Last week, Serrano offered the editor of RIC Matters a taste of a sweet potato and apple salad tossed in honey mustard dressing. Not only was the salad healthy, but it was delicious. (Photos on left).

Each week, Serrano will present themed daily menus such as “Taco Tuesday” and “Throwback Thursday.” The Café will also offer lunch combos such as a cup of soup and half sandwich. Serrano says the Cafe also is planning a loyalty rewards program for frequent diners.

Serrano says he will continue to buy ingredients from local vendors as much as possible, using fresh produce, cage-free eggs and meats with minimal antibiotics.  “Our main goal is health,” he says.

LIFE Center Shares 2014 Annual Report

As the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago’s LIFE Center celebrates its 11th year of operation, it is with great pride that we share our Fiscal 2014 Annual Report. You will appreciate seeing how the Center has grown; clearly there are so many wonderful achievements. Some of the major highlights featured in the report include:

  • The LIFE Center continues to stand as the largest source of information for people with disabilities in the country. Our collection currently comprises more than 7,000 resources. 
  • LIFE Center web traffic averages 340,661 page views per month with 4,087,933 page views annually. Steady increases have also occurred in unique users, now reflecting 22,952 people each month.  Since its launch in 2003, cumulative page views surpassed 30 million with more than 183 countries accessing the LIFE website. 
  • Total outreach and service efforts represented 19,382 person contacts. This included individualized teaching sessions with patients, families, staff, and visitors, as well as a wide variety of education programs,support groups, special events, and tours with prospective patients and families.
  •  The LIFE Center’s vibrant Peer Mentor Program provided 906 one-on-one visits with patients, families, caregivers, and friends.

Building this powerful resource has relied on the collective talents of many people, and we are grateful for their ongoing contributions to the vital services that we offer.

For a copy of the complete report, please click here.

We look forward to 2015!


Lisa Rosen, Manager, LIFE Center

Chicago Cubs Visit Pediatric Patients at RIC

The Chicago Cubs recently visited RIC during the first stop of their two-day community tour before the 2015 Cubs Convention, bringing smiles to our pediatric patients and their families.

On January 14, Chicago Cubs Board of Directors member Laura Ricketts, new Cubs manager Joe Maddon, mascot Clark the Cub and a group of players conducted a hitting and pitching clinic in the Heyworth Rooms for our pediatric patients, after which they hosted a pizza party for patients and their families.

The Chicago Cubs and their charitable fund, Cubs Care, have granted more than $19 million to Chicago non-profit organizations, including RIC, since 1991. The Cubs Care fund has been a major supporter of RIC’s Caring for Kids program and the Junior Competitive Sports League for many years.

To see a full interview of what Joe Maddon had to say about the Cubs trip to RIC, click here: http://m.cubs.mlb.com/news/article/106454682/cubs-visit-chicago-hospital-as-caravan-begins

For more photos from the Cubs visit, please click the arrows below.








Performance Improvement Seeks Teams for Quality Fest

The Performance Improvement (PI) Department is currently seeking teams throughout the system of care that have used a PI approach (e.g., Plan-Do-Check-Act, Lean) to improve processes within the organization. We want to invite you to participate in Quality Fest 2015, scheduled for Wednesday, April 15.

This year we are urging teams with small incremental improvements to enter and show off your work. Performance improvement is about improving at all levels – large projects and small incremental improvements alike.

As with last year, there are two levels of participation. Projects will be eligible for the Judge’s Pick if they have clear results and have measured outcomes after improvements have been implemented. Projects will be eligible for the People’s choice if they have collected data to support their problem statement. For more information, please click here for the RIC Quality Fest Entry and Judging Criteria.

(Pictured above is last year’s Quality Fest winner Brooke Nack from the team at RIC at Franciscan
St. Anthony Health in Crown Point, Indiana)

If your team is interested in participating, please submit project info via this Survey Monkey form: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/QF2015.

Each submission will be reviewed and a confirmation of acceptance will be sent to the Project Leader.

Please contact Dave Brewington (312-238-6191 or dbrewingto@ric.org) or Tabitha Pearsall (312-238-2904 or tpearsall@ric.org) if you need assistance with a current or planned Performance Improvement project, or have questions about Quality Fest 2015.

Next Drawing for Rotary House of Dreams Charity Raffle on Feb. 6

The second installment of the Rotary House of Dreams Charity Raffle, benefitting RIC, will occur on Friday, February 6. Two cars and a motorcycle (or the cash equivalents) will be awarded to lucky winners next month, along with numerous other prizes.

Tickets purchased prior to the 6th will be eligible for the remaining four raffles, including prizes of vehicles, boats and trips, along with the grand prize drawing in May…for a house or of $1 million cash.  Odds of winning a prize are 1 in 15. For information on how to participate, call 800-500-7545, or go online to www.ricraffle.org. Be sure to mention RIC when you purchase, which will result in more funds coming to us.  Some employees are putting together group purchases of tickets, a great way to spread the cost and share the reward.

Healthy Eating During the Super Bowl

Tips from Kelly Niemaszyk, MS, MPH, RD, LDN, Clinical Dietitian:

At Super Bowl parties it is often hard to make healthy choices for food. The choices we’re presented with? Wings, pizza, chips and dip, nachos, and other tasty but not-so-healthy options. This year, if you’re attending or hosting a Super Bowl party, here are some tips:

  • Eat a healthy snack with protein and fiber ahead of time to help you stay full so you’re not as tempted to fill up on “junk food.”
  • Focus on the game instead of the food!
  • Plan out what you want to put on your plate and sit down to eat it – don’t just stand by the buffet and graze.
  • Offer to bring a healthy dish to share.

Click here for a great chili recipe that would be a welcome addition to any Super Bowl spread. It’s made with sweet potatoes and other healthy vegetables, and is packed with flavor.


RIC Insider


Esprit! Award Nomination Deadline This Friday

We want to remind you that thanks to the Prince Family Esprit! Program, there is an easy and fun way to recognize your RIC colleagues. It’s the Esprit! Award Peer Recognition Program and you can recognize your colleagues for exemplary effort using handwritten “You Made My Day!” Thank-You notes.

On every floor and in every department, “Thank-You” notes are readily available. Once you have written a “Thank You” note, please make a copy before giving it to the person you wish to recognize. After you have given your colleague the note, submit the copy to Stephanie Adams in the Human Resources Department.

The deadline for nominations for the next Esprit! Award Winner is this Friday, January 30. Why not write a note today about a colleague who went above and beyond? If you have any questions regarding the Esprit! Award Peer Recognition Program, or need any materials, please contact Stephanie Adams in the Human Resources Department at 8-6291 or sadams@ric.org.

Last Call for Employee Holiday Gift on Friday

If you have not yet received your RIC holiday gift, please pick it up no later than this Friday,
January 30.
Bring your green ticket to the HR Liaison Office in Room 1635
of the hospital (Monday through Friday from 7:30 am to 4:30 pm) or the HR
Office in Suite 1031 of the Onterie Building (Monday through Friday from 8:30
am to 4:30 pm.)

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Poster Giveaway

Posters of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. that were displayed on each floor of the Superior and Onterie locations are still available. If you’re interested, please send an email to Mary Devine or call her at ext. 8-6290.

Family & Friends Basic Life Saving Training on February 25

The Prince Family Esprit! Program is pleased to offer, as part of the Mind component of the program, Family & Friends Basic Life Saving training through the American Heart Association. The Friends & Family course teaches the lifesaving skills of adult and child CPR, AED use, and relief from choking.  It is open to any RIC staff member who is interested in learning basic life saving principles. If your job requires CPR or BLS certification, this class will not meet those requirements.

The Family & Friends Basic Life Saving session will be held at the flagship in Room 1659 on Wednesday, February 25th from 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Registration in advance is required through the Learning Management System (LMS), found on RIC Connect. Click on the “Learning Management System” link. Your LMS user name and password are first name.last name and welcome. Once you are logged in to the LMS main page, click on Course Catalog > CPR/Medical Emergency Classes > Family & Friends.

If you have questions regarding Family & Friends training or registration, please contact Stephanie Adams at sadams@ric.org or 312-238-6291.

Updated Payroll Information

The following are payroll information updates for 2015:

The Illinois Income Tax rate has decreased from 5 percent to 3.75 percent. If you have questions, please consult with a tax advisor to determine if modifications are needed on your Form IL-W4 (Employees’ Withholding Allowance Certification).

For mileage expenses incurred beginning on January 1, 2015, the business standard mileage rate is .575 cents per mile for business miles driven. Click here to access the updated form.

Please log into the ADP portal for updates on W-2s and other payroll matters. If you do not yet have access to the ADP system, click here for information about signing up.

Commuter Flexible Spending Account Change

If you participate in our Commuter Flexible Spending Account, please be aware that this benefit will change in spring 2015. The Commuter Flexible Spending Account (FSA) will change from a one month to a two month pre-fund process, beginning with the April 2015 payroll deduction which will fund June 2015 transit/parking passes. There will be a one month ramp up period associated with this change, meaning transit/parking orders for May 2015 will not be funded by April 2015 payroll deductions. Please note that this benefit is not applicable to RIC parking facilities, which are already deducted from payroll on a pre-tax basis. For additional information and to learn how you can prepare for this change, please refer to the 2015 Commuter FSA change planning document by clicking here.

If you have any questions, please contact Gabriel Vergara, Payroll Manager, at gvergara@ric.org.

RIC Matters Submission Deadline

The deadline to submit articles and announcements for RIC Matters is Monday at noon if you want them published in the following Wednesday’s newsletter. If you plan to submit photos, please make sure that patients and non-employees sign photo release forms. Please remember if your articles are time sensitive to submit them as early as possible to: RICMatters@ric.org. Thanks!

Superior Street Sprout Café Menu

Please click here to access the Superior Street Sprout Café menu.