Keeping Patients Safe During COVID-19, with Dr. Terri Ashmeade

The COVID-19 pandemic is having a lasting impact on the way we live, work and interact. USF Health closely follows the evolving CDC guidelines for COVID-19 to keep patients and staff safe in our clinics. Listen to Terri Ashmeade, MD, chief quality officer at USF Health and Morsani College of Medicine pediatrics professor, discuss patient safety in the clinics.

Video by Allison Long




USF Health-TGH first in Florida using new organ transplant technology designed to save more lives

January 24, 2020

Cardiothoracic surgeon Dr. John Dunning and team performed the transplantation of  donor lung kept “breathing” in human-like conditions

For all the advances in organ transplantation, most organs are still transferred from donor to recipient in a cooler packed with ice. The clock begins ticking as soon as the donor organ is recovered – and in the case of a heart or lung, for instance, a transplant is usually no longer viable after four to six hours.

Now, the USF Health Heart and Lung Transplant Program at Tampa General Hospital (TGH) has become the first in the state to use or formally study the sophisticated organ transplant system designed to keep donor lungs and hearts healthier longer and increase the number of transplants.  TGH is also assessing the Organ Care System (OCS™ ), manufactured by medical device company TransMedics Inc., for use in extending the life of donor livers.


Video footage courtesy of TransMedics, Inc.


On the Horizon: Donation After Cardiac Death (DCD)

While advancements in technology like TransMedics Inc.’s Organ Care System extends the viability of organs, the problem remains that there are just not enough organ donors to help everyone. In the United States, deceased organ donors need to be declared brain dead before organ procurement. In other countries, such as the United Kingdom and Australia, there are well developed programs for donation after cardiac death (DCD). USF Health’s Cardiothoracic Surgeon, John Dunning, MD, believes that DCD is on the horizon for the US and it would increase the number of available donations.






Advancements In Internal Medicine, with Dr. John T. Sinnott

July 01, 2019

“There’s so much to be excited about. I wish I were 50 years younger,” says John T. Sinnott, chairman of USF Health’s Department of Internal Medicine. One of the advancements in internal medicine that Dr. Sinnott discusses is the sequencing of the human genome. According to the National Human Genome Research Institute, “a genome is an organism’s complete set of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), a chemical compound that contains the genetic instructions needed to develop and direct the activities of every organism.” The NHGRI describes the success of a complete sequence of the human genome as being similar to, “having all the pages of a manual needed to make the human body. The challenge to researchers and scientists now is to determine how to read the contents of all these pages and then understand how the parts work together and to discover the genetic basis for health and the pathology of human disease.” Understanding an individual’s genome means being able to figure out what health risks a person has and will greatly improve preventive medicine.



Physician Burnout, with Dr. John T. Sinnott

May 21, 2019

Burnout has been defined as a long-term, unresolvable job stress that leads to exhaustion and feeling overwhelmed, cynical, detached from the job, and lacking a sense of personal accomplishment. According to Medscape’s 2019 survey of more than 15,000 physicians in over 29 specialties, 44% of physicians reported feeling burned out; 11% were colloquially depressed and 4% were clinically depressed.  Among the most burned out specialties were critical care (48%) and neurology (48%), closely followed by family medicine (47%), ob/gyn (46%), and internal medicine (46%). At USF Health, to balance out what may feel like repetitive, meaningless activity, physicians are encouraged to do research, teach, or consult. “There’s a huge array of techniques that we use to avoid burnout,” says John T. Sinnott, chairman of USF Health’s Department of Internal Medicine. “We encourage international travel with our doctors; we encourage volunteer work. Burnout is a dangerous problem and we pay attention to it.”




Multidisciplinary Care is a Part of Treating Sudden Cardiac Arrest, with Dr. Bibhu Mohanty

November 28, 2018

When a person goes into sudden cardiac arrest, a multidisciplinary team steps in to save their life. Starting with the bystander who calls emergency medical services and ending with the intensive care unit team who monitors the patient, there is teamwork every step of the way. Being treated at an academic medical center enables multidisciplinary and interprofessional care to happen immediately and efficiently.






Teamwork is a Part of the Education at USF Health, with Dr. Terri Ashmeade

July 13, 2018

Doctors, nurses, pharmacists each go through different medical training programs to get their license, but in the real world, they still have to work together. “Both patient safety and quality improvement require us to work in teams,” says Terri Ashmeade, MD, division chief and professor of pediatrics at the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. “If we can get our students to start learning together and training together, developing these communication skills together from the beginning, we’ll be way ahead of the curve in terms of patient safety and the training of patient safety that we provide for our students across USF Health.”



USF Health Encourages Teamwork, with Dr. Thomas Rutherford

March 12, 2018

An academic institution, such as USF Health, has the advantage of being a place where teamwork is not only encouraged, but thrives. One benefit of teamwork in health care is, “no matter what one person knows, somebody always can look at the situation from a different point of view and it opens up a whole new world,” says Thomas Rutherford, PhD, MD, professor and division director of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. New perspectives introduced through teamwork can lead to new discoveries and better ways to deliver care.



How USF Health Leads the Way in Team-Based Care, with Dr. Edmund Funai

September 14, 2017

USF Health has long embraced interdisciplinary care and training. With its combination of colleges and schools, encompassing medicine, nursing, public health, pharmacy and physical therapy, USF Health’sinterventional approach to treatment is strengthened by its dynamic ability to also focus on population health, wellness and harnessing data to answer complex questions. Dr. Funai says USF Health has the opportunity to grow the whole health care team that works together to benefit the patient, “because that’s where the focus always needs to be.”




Outstanding Experience for our Patients with Dr. Edmund Funai

August 7, 2017

A large portion of health care value is embedded in the patient experience. Dr. Funai says each person who interacts with patients becomes part of the overall experience of care. USF Health encourages all health care professionals, at every touch point, to make warm and human connections with patients.




Improving Customer Service in Health Care with Dr. Edmund Funai

July 17, 2017

Successful business models could help improve patient satisfaction in health care. Dr. Funai says that the health care field needs to learn from other industries to improve themselves and their customers’ expectations. Companies like Disney and Ritz Carlton maximize customer experience, and health care can certainly use a similar approach to advance their overall tactics to improve patient satisfaction.




Current health care challenges with Jay Wolfson, DrPH, JD

June 15, 2017

Jay Wolfson, DrPH, JD, discusses the current health care challenges. Dr. Wolfson suggests that having access to services, beyond bearing a health insurance card, doesn’t ensure patients the affordability of care or services. The current system of care regards the health of patients into segmented areas, which are referred to specialized practitioners. Many times, these specialists will only have an incomplete picture of their patients’ conditions. Patients are often referred to more specialists, who will only examine a specified area of the their health. This compartmentalized manner of care is costly.

That’s why information sharing is critical. The integration of health services promotes better health outcomes that benefit the patients. We need accurate information from patients and specialists across network providers and areas of practice to share electronic records, known as big data.

Implemented changes to health care systems have shifted focus into outcomes rather than the fee-for-service billing systems. The challenge moving forward is using the big data to help create population-based preventative measures for better outcomes.


USF Health: To envision and implement the future of health.

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