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New, combined employee e-newsletter for UT Health Physicians and Mays Cancer Center launching Sept. 2

More news with less in your inbox! UT Health Physicians and the Mays Cancer Center are consolidating their news into a new, combined employee e-newsletter, called UT Health Connect, launching Sept. 2. UT Health Connect will replace both The UT Healthier Way and Future Focus. 

More news with less in your inbox! UT Health Physicians and the Mays Cancer Center are consolidating their news into a new, combined employee e-newsletter, called UT Health Connect, launching Sept. 2. UT Health Connect will replace both The UT Healthier Way and Future Focus. 


The new newsletter, UT Health Connect, will continue to contain helpful and relevant information for employees in both facets of UT Health San Antonio. No action is required from employees to receive the new newlsetter. 

Questions about COVID-19 testing or vaccines? Bookmark our COVID-19 site and find the answers

Visit our COVID-19 website to find answers about testing, protocols, vaccines, timely updates and more. 

Get your questions answered about the new Comprehensive Leave Program

The new Comprehensive Leave Program begins Sept. 1 and Human Resources is hosting Town Hall sessions with a presentation and Q&A for employees. Find links to attend and more details on the new Comprehensive Leave Program website.

Delta variant facts from UT Health San Antonio experts

As children return to area schools this month, here are some points of interest about the delta variant from experts at UT Health San Antonio.

Free Care.com membership can help employees find quality dependent care

UT Health San Antonio offers free membership in Care.com for benefits-eligible employees who need help finding quality dependent care. 

Donations needed for the SECC virtual silent auction

The virtual silent auction benefitting the State Employee Charitable Campaign (SECC) begins on Sept. 13, 2021, and the deadline to donate items for the auction has been extended. 

Access recorded lectures from CRC Conference

The 2021 Cardio Renal Connections Conference lectures are now available online through Aug. 31. Lectures cover a variety of topics and allow you to obtain CME/CNE credit when you register.

Stars and Shields Awards

Excellence deserves recognition. Nominate your outstanding coworkers for a UT Health Physicians Silver Star Award. 

W-2 forms now available online

Your W-2 forms are now available for viewing and printing. Click on the Paycheck & W-2 link at the top of the My UT Health intranet to login and access your forms. If you didn’t consent to receive your W2 electronically, a paper form has been sent to your current mailing address. Reprints will be available after Feb.14, 2021. 

Missed your vaccine appointment? Here’s how to reschedule

UT Health San Antonio faculty, staff and students can email covid-19@uthscsa.edu to check on vaccine availability and to schedule a future vaccination appointment.

Fashion Fridays all October

UT Health Physicians staff are invited to have some fun with fashion every Friday this month.

With permission from your medical director, UT Health Physicians staff are invited to have some fun with fashion every Friday this October.


Friday, Oct. 16: Spirit & Scrubs

Show your UT Health San Antonio spirit on Orange Out Friday. Wear a spirit week t-shirt with your blue scrub bottoms. Post your pride on social using #UTHealthSAPerformance.


Friday, Oct. 23: Fashion for a Cause

October is breast cancer awareness month. Wear a pink top or breast cancer support shirt with your blue scrub bottoms.


Friday, Oct. 30: Halloween Eve

Wear a pink/breast cancer awareness shirt. Or, wear your work-ready Halloween costume.


Keep these rules in mind:

- Employee ID must be worn

- Employee must be easily identifiable

- Wear approved masks only. Patient-facing staff must wear surgical masks.

- No scary or inappropriate costumes. It must be young-child friendly.


If you have any questions, please speak to your manager. Or, contact Casey Peterson.

Nominate a deserving employee for a Presidential Award
by William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP, President

The nomination process for the 2021 Presidential Excellence Awards is now open with a submission deadline of 5 p.m. CST on Friday, November 20, 2020.

Dear Faculty and Staff,


It’s been a little while since my last update.  That’s good news for it means we’ve had no new crises.  Let me start with a big THANK YOU as we continue to work shoulder-to-shoulder on the challenges imposed by this ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  It’s certainly not over, yet we are beginning to see glimmers of hope on the horizon.  This is all due to your continued dedication to the mission of caring for our patients during these most trying times.  So again, thank you.


As we prepare for this next phase of this pandemic, school/university re-openings and high-volume rapid turnaround COVID tests are taking center stage.  Here are a few important updates:


A Note on Predicting the Next COVID Surge

Sg2 was quite helpful in predicting the last surge.  However, there are two new variables which impact this model (or any model for that matter) – uncertainties related to seroprevalence and the impact of school openings.


Nevertheless, Sg2 predicts if current mitigation levels of masking, distancing, and testing are maintained we can anticipate a steady rate of COVID hospitalizations during and after schools reopen this Fall.  However, during this time frame the citywide COVID census is not predicted to pose high stress levels on our health care system compared to the last surge.  This projection will be closely monitored and modified as more information becomes available.


What About the Flu?

The impact of influenza this winter is not clear, so we will be watching it closely.  We do anticipate some individuals will get co-infected with both COVID and influenza, in which case they will be at high risk for poor outcomes including death.  We strongly encourage everyone get a flu shot this Fall.  Information on vaccine administration at UTHP sites and Wellness 360 will be made available soon.  In the event you become ill, you should immediately contact your supervisor, stay home, call your PCP, and promptly obtain flu and COVID testing.  Again, we encourage everyone to maintain masking, distancing, and handwashing since these measures also reduce the likelihood of getting the flu (although they are not a substitute for getting the flu shot).


A Few Important Notes on COVID Testing


1. Reporting of Ambulatory Results

a. For tests ordered from UT Epic.  In order to improve turnaround times, COVID test results are now auto-released through MyChart at 24 hours (rather than manual release).  Likewise, UT lab personal are no longer calling positive results to ordering providers.  This will give the lab more time to focus on test throughput and turnaround times.


b. For tests ordered from UHS Epic or through the Standing Delegated Nursing Order at the Pavilion.  Results are routed to your UHS Epic in-basket.  Pre-procedure + COVID results will continue to be called to the ordering proceduralists.  If you are experiencing something different, please let me know.


2. If you work in the PCC, Geriatrics Clinic, or Mays Cancer Center (locations where frequent COVID testing is performed), COVID tests not only populate the ordering provider’s in-basket, but now also a clinic-specific COVID in-basket.  This gives on-call providers easy access to results afterhours.


3. Repeat COVID Testing is not indicated for Follow Up of Positive Pre-Procedure Tests.  Instead, we endorse a symptom-based strategy for moving forward with rescheduling the procedure (see first attachment for updated UT Health guidance).  This is consistent with the CDC guidelines and UHS Policy (see attachments two and three which have also recently been updated, OR click this link to access UHS COVID Clearinghouse).  Also, if a patient had a + COVID test done at an outside facility, it would be helpful for the patient to bring the official copy of the result so it can be uploaded into our EMR.  If we have such documentation, we will not require re-testing which the patient will appreciate.  One can only stand having a swab stuck up his or her nose so many times.


A Note on Clinic Costs and Scanning Notes 

Remember, clinics are charged a few cents for every page sent for scanning.  One way to keep clinic costs down is by minimizing scans.  Instead of sending the full hospitalization record for scanning (which may include blank pages, demographics, etc), consider just scanning the most relevant reports.  That’s not just good for business during these hard times, but it also prevents chart bloat which thereby allows important information to be found more readily.  Another option is for the clinic to do its own scanning.  Please speak to your Practice Manager for more details.  Sorry to end with something so mundane.


Please contact me for any questions.


Thank you for all you do.



Bob Leverence, MD, FACP

Chief Medical Officer

Kayaking through COVID

Facilities management executive director, Raymundo Rivera, shares how the limitations of COVID-19 brought an opportunity for him to get closer to his family.

2021 Best S.A. Doctors and Dentists - Deadline is Nov. 30

Scene in S.A. magazine will soon publish its "S.A. Physicians, Surgeons & Dentists: Best of 2021" section, and it's fitting that UT Health San Antonio have a solid representation in the issue. All providers are encouraged to nominate their peer physicians, surgeons and dentists to be listed. 

Dedicated to our health care heroes

Messages of encouragement and support for our staff and providers are constantly posted on our Impact site. Read the notes or write one of your own!

San Antonio’s first double lung transplant for COVID-19

UT Health Physicians' Dr. Edward Sako and Dr. Deborah Levine talk to the Express-News about performing our city's first double lung transplant on a patient who suffered permanent lung damage from COVID-19.

UT Health stands out on Scene in S.A.’s list of ‘Best Doctors 2021’

UT Health San Antonio has the best doctors in the city, according to Scene In S.A., the city’s premier magazine. With specialties ranging from pediatrics to plastic surgery, we represented a third of the best doctors on this year’s list. 

More than 80 UT Health physicians recognized as Texas Super Doctors

A total of 88 UT Health physicians have been named Texas Super Doctors by Texas Monthly magazine for their high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. 

Go Red! National Wear Red Day is February 5

Join us in support of American Heart Month by wearing a red shirt with scrub bottoms on National Wear Red Day: Friday, Feb. 5, to bring awareness to heart disease as a leading cause of death for Americans, especially women.

Download the flyer with guidelines here. 


Join us in support of American Heart Month by wearing a red shirt with scrub bottoms on National Wear Red Day: Friday, Feb. 5, to bring awareness to heart disease as a leading cause of death for Americans, especially women.


Guidelines for red shirts are as follows:

  • No large brand names or logos allowed.
  • No obscene words, gestures or symbols allowed.
  • If an employee’s shirt is deemed inappropriate for the workplace, they will be sent home to change and vacation leave will be used to make up their time.

Employees are also encouraged to share photos in the their red shirts on social media by tagging @UTHealthSAphysicians on Facebook and using #WearRedDay #GoRedforWomen.

Masking, good hand hygiene and physical distancing required to stop the spread

Even though COVID-19 vaccines are here and the majority of our campus community has been vaccinated, the fight is not over.

COVID vaccine appointments available for patients 65 or older

Current UT Health San Antonio patients who are 65 years old or older can now schedule their COVID-19 vaccine appointment using MyChart.

Take a virtual tour of the new Barshop Institute

Take a virtual tour of the Sam and Ann Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies, hear about some of the important research being performed in the laboratories in this nationally renowned center and learn about the legacy of the Barshop family on advancing care for Texans.

President's message regarding state mask mandate and occupancy limits
by William L. Henrich, MD, MACP, President and Professor of Medicine

Our fight against COVID-19 at UT Health San Antonio will remain consistent. As essential workers who serve patients every day – many of whom are among the sickest in our community – we must always prioritize safety.

Dear Faculty, Staff, Students and Residents:


Yesterday afternoon we learned Texas will be lifting its state mask mandate as well as lifting business occupancy limits effective March 10.


Organizations, retailers, restaurants, sporting organizations, churches and schools are now interpreting what this means for their respective populations and how they will handle for their employees as well as their patrons. Approaches will vary and will differ city to city, place to place.


Our fight against COVID-19 at UT Health San Antonio will remain consistent. As essential workers who serve patients every day – many of whom are among the sickest in our community – we must always prioritize safety. We will continue with our current safety protocols and require masks on campus for employees, students and visitors. We will continue to require temperature screenings upon entry to campus buildings and maintain our disinfection protocols.


We serve as the region’s expert and advocate in how prevention strategies (masking, handwashing, personal distancing) have been most effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19. The pandemic is far from over and we should not let our guard down now. As a health institution that exists to care for and protect the health of our community, and train the next generation of health care workers, it is our responsibility to take actions that we know through science help reduce the spread of this disease.  


Spring break arrives next week and likely will include travel for an unvaccinated population. Easter is right around the corner, so please remain vigilant about personal prevention measures. We do not want a repeat of last year’s activities that amplified transmission. We must do everything we can to limit a resurgence of this virus that has killed more than 43,000 people in Texas so far.


UT Health San Antonio continues our vital work of vaccinating thousands of San Antonians each week to try to attain herd immunity levels: so far, we have given over 61,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine that are safe, effective and working. We are developing a mobile health unit to serve our hardest-to-reach community members. Experts at our university are studying viral variants and the rising prevalence of some strains. Infectious disease teams are rapidly preparing to study sequencing with detailed epidemiological analysis to investigate associated SARS-CoV-2 infections and inform infection control measures, as well as continually evaluate the immunity of COVID-19 and how long it may last.


Our faculty members continue to serve on citywide committees that advise city and county officials and will continue serving in those roles.


Let’s continue to do all we can together to defeat COVID-19. Encourage everyone to get a vaccine when able, wear your mask, maintain hand hygiene and keep a safe personal distance.


With respect and appreciation,


William L. Henrich, MD, MACP

President and Professor of Medicine

How to respond to questions about the Johnson & Johnson vaccine suspension

Stay informed and use this guide to help answer questions you may receive about the April 13 Johnson and Johnson vaccine suspension. 

On April 13, 2021, the FDA and CDC recommended a pause in administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, sometimes referred to as the J&J or JNJ single-dose vaccine, following six reports (out of 6.8 million doses) of a very rare, but potentially dangerous, blood clotting problem. UT Health San Antonio has suspended use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine as of April 13, 2021.


Please use these talking points if you receive questions about the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine:


If you receive a question from a news reporter or any type of media:

  • Provide them with UT Health San Antonio’s media team’s phone number: 210-567-2579.

If you receive a question about the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine from a patient or general public:


As of April 13, 2021 UT Health San Antonio is following the FDA and CDC recommendation to suspend the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.



  • The CDC and FDA are investigating reports of rare, but potentially dangerous, blood clots that may have been related to the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Additional details:

  • None of the cases of blood clots reported at this time have occurred in Texas, where more than 500,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been administered.
  • A total of 6.8 million doses given, the rare reports of blood clots have been by six women between the ages of 18 to 48 years old. The clots occurred six to 13 days after vaccination.

What should people who received the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine do?

  • Know that this type of clotting problem has a specific therapy when identified early.
  • Those who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine less than two weeks ago should watch for easy bruising, gum bleeding, nose bleeds, swelling in your arms or legs, or tiny blood spots under the skin in areas away from the injection site. If you/they have one of those symptoms, you/they should see their doctor.
  • More serious vaccine adverse reactions include shortness of breath, chest pain, persistent severe abdominal pain, persistent headache or blurred vision. If you/they have any of these symptoms, you/they should go to the closest emergency department.

Which COVID-19 vaccine does UT Health San Antonio provide?

  • UT Health San Antonio is a vaccination hub providing the two-dose Pfizer vaccine. Our primary care locations may also offer the two-dose Moderna vaccine to eligible current patients during their appointment.

Where can I learn more?

  • You can learn more on our website: UTHealthCare.org/COVID
UT Health to build major outpatient facility, expanding leading-edge care

UT Health San Antonio is set to build a major community outpatient center on the Park West Campus of The University of Texas at San Antonio.

Learn about COVID-19 fog and more health topics in new webcast series

UT Health Physicians presents the HealthyU Webcast Series where our medical specialists are taking your questions and sharing their expertise on today’s most-discussed health topics. Tune in for a webcast on June 3 to learn about “long COVID” from Dr. Monica Verduzco-Gutierrez.

Ask the doctor: Should my children get the COVID-19 vaccine?

Dr. Robert Leverence, chief medical officer for UT Health Physicians, was a live guest on News 4 and explained what people should know about vaccinating adolescents. 

UT Health San Antonio to provide student health services at UTSA

UT Health San Antonio is expanding its recently

announced partnership with UTSA to include an integrated college health plan for students aligned with current national

best practices.

Beware of ransomware attacks

You may have heard in recent weeks about an increase in a type of cybercrime known as a ransomware attack. Each of you is an ally in safeguarding

against these types of attacks by adhering to these best practices.

Fiesta is back, buy your UT Health San Antonio Fiesta medals

Fiesta 2021 is taking place June 17-27. You can buy your 2020 and 2021 UT Health San Antonio Fiesta medals starting June 1 for $10 each. Cash is only accepted.

Infectious disease specialist hopeful a ‘targeted’ approach will help get more people vaccinated against COVID-19

Dr. Ruth Berggren spoke to

KSAT 12 audiences in a Q&A saying that she is hopeful that a more targeted approach will

help get people vaccinated against COVID-19.

UT Health San Antonio Multispecialty and Research Hospital Leadership Announcements

The new Multispecialty and Research Hospital is expected to be operational by mid-2024.

To correlate with the facility build, a new organizational structure is also being established.

Construction has begun on the new UT Health San Antonio Multispecialty and Research Hospital, which is expected to be operational by mid-2024. To correlate with the facility build, a new organizational structure is also being established to support best practices in leadership, hospital management, innovation and collaboration. Planning continues to move forward as we put into place the structures, processes and teams focusing on quality, safety, efficiency and standardization, patient care services and patient engagement that are coordinated across the continuum of services.


Jeremy Viles, DNP, MBA, RN, NE-BC, will serve as Assistant Vice President for Hospital Planning effective this month. With his appointment to this new role, Dr. Viles will coordinate the development and execution of the hospital project. He will have responsibility for leading infrastructure development to meet the programmatic goals of the hospital including design and operational planning. This position will report to Andrea Marks, Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, and is also accountable to a newly established hospital operating board. Dr. Viles will coordinate and facilitate the use of consultants to ensure compliance with Joint Commission requirements for accreditation, as well as collaborate with a cross-functional institutional leadership team to support the strategy and tactics for unifying and integrating hospital operations and support functions.


Dr. Viles has served as Chief Nursing Officer of the Mays Cancer Center and Assistant Dean of Clinical Practice in the School of Nursing since 2018. Prior to joining UT Health San Antonio, Dr. Viles served as the executive director for projects and operations for global clinical programs at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. He also brings critical inpatient operational experience, serving as a clinical administrative director for multiple hospital service lines and specialties with MD Anderson, HCA and Methodist Hospital in Houston. A new nursing leader will be hired for the Mays Cancer Center to replace Dr. Viles, who will continue to support the cancer center during this transition. Dr. Viles has made invaluable contributions to our organization in a short amount of time and we look forward to counting on his expertise and counsel as we boldly move ahead.


Korn Ferry, a global organizational consulting firm, has been retained to lead the search for the hospital’s Chief Executive Officer. With expertise in academic and health care talent acquisition, Korn Ferry will launch the national search in the next few weeks focusing on the experience and skill set to continuously improve quality and efficiency of health care delivery, provide better patient care, align with partners to expand services along the continuum of care, and drive value through service, productivity and strong financial management. The hospital CEO will guide the UT Health San Antonio Multispecialty and Research Hospital through its next phase of growth as our organization continues its ambitious journey of excellence and our commitment to serve the unique health care needs of our diverse population.  A search committee will be named and the search will be led by Carlos Rosende, M.D., F.A.C.S., who serves in the roles of the Executive Vice Dean for Clinical Affairs at the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine and the Executive Director, UT Health Physicians.


Developments with the UT Health San Antonio Multispecialty and Research Hospital will be provided in our routine communications and can also be found at https://uthealthsahospital.org/.

You're invited: UT Health Physicians COVID Town Hall

Plan to join the next virtual UT Health Physicians COVID Town Hall on Wednesday, June 30, at 5:15 p.m., where leadership will provide updates, discuss current challenges and answer questions.  

The COVID-19 pandemic has lessened in strength but the work of health care providers is not over.  With only half of the population vaccinated, it is likely that we will see future surges. 


Please plan to join the next virtual UT Health Physicians COVID Town Hall on Wednesday, June 30, at 5:15 p.m., where leadership will provide updates, discuss current challenges and answer questions. The link and agenda are below.


Click on this link to join the Town Hall:  UTHP COVID Town Hall (June 30, 2021)


Town Hall Agenda:

  1. Intro: Dr. Bob Leverence
  2. Update on the COVID-19 Pandemic and vaccination efforts – it’s not over yet: Dr. Bob Leverence
  3. Update on Variants: Dr. Jason Bowling
  4. Update on Vaccine Safety: Dr. Jason Bowling
  5. What we can do to address vaccine hesitancy: Dr. Ruth Berggren
  6. Considerations related to mandating COVID-19 vaccinations: Dr. Jason Morrow
  7. What might the “new normal” look like: Dr. Jason Bowling
  8. Special concerns for immunocompromised individuals after vaccination: Dr. Ruth Berggren
  9. Q&A: Moderator, Dr. Bob Leverence
Virtual T1 to T4 in 3 (Minutes) Challenge

Staff is invited to attend a virtual challenge that highlights multidisciplinary UT Health San Antonio translational science research projects. Presenters share their research in three minutes utilizing language and concepts that are easy to understand – with one slide.

Annual Benefits Enrollment is open through July 31

Annual Benefits Enrollment is open through July 31. You can change your benefit choices and request or change coverage for dependents for the next plan year, which starts Sept. 1. 2021.

Partnership allows employees to support veterans through mentorship program

UT Health San Antonio employees now have the opportunity to support veterans and the Armed Forces through a partnership with American Corporate Partners.

Plastic surgery special available through July 9

Summer is here! Don’t miss your chance to take advantage of our limited-time plastic surgery special. Our plastic surgeons will tailor each procedure to the needs and desires of their clients.

UT Health San Antonio explains how to avoid heat-related injuries

Dr. Katherine Bartush with UT Health Physicians Sports Medicine was interviewed by News 4 San Antonio to raise awareness about ways to avoid heat injury this summer while doing outside activities.

Secure email service will change this summer

Protecting information transmitted via email is vital to the digital security of UT Health San Antonio. The secure email service will be changing this summer as we continue to migrate back-end email services to the Office 365 platform. 

Next on HealthyU: What's that growing on my skin?

Sign up and share the next HealthyU webcast to submit your questions and enter to win a UT Health swag bag.

Will facemasks return to San Antonio because of the new coronavirus delta variant?

Chief medical officer for UT Health Physicians, Dr. Robert Leverence, talks about what the new coronavirus delta variant means for the San Antonio community.

First-in-city proton therapy center to provide alternative to radiation treatment for cancer

UT Health San Antonio and Proton International LLC are partnering to build a proton therapy center to provide an advanced alternative to conventional radiation treatment for cancer.

Team describes science-based hiccups intervention

Researchers from UT Health San Antonio and colleagues worldwide describe a new science-based intervention for hiccups in a research letter published June 18 in the journal JAMA Network Open.

Take the Wellness 360 survey and enter to win a swag bag

Wellness 360 is asking for your feedback with this 3-5 minute survey which will help inform how to better care for everyone at UT Health San Antonio.

Mays Cancer Center selected as founding partner of oncology clinical trial diversity alliance

On June 23, the Mays Cancer Center was announced as a founding partner of the Advancing Inclusive Research® Site Alliance. 

Project YES offers free, confidential, online mental health resources to teens

Teens across San Antonio and South Texas can improve their mental health while helping others through an online program offered through UT Teen Health, an adolescent health and wellness program at UT Health San Antonio.

Take the UT Health San Antonio Campus Climate Survey

Don't forget to complete the Campus Climate Survey! Each respondent can make a difference in building an

inclusive and welcoming work environment on our campus,

so please take the survey today.

Holiday schedule standardized starting this year

Starting fiscal year 2022, UT Health San Antonio is implementing a standardized holiday schedule to include the same holidays each year.

Save the date: Heart Rhythm Focus Virtual Symposium

Register now for a free Heart Rhythm Focus Virtual Symposium on June 12 that will focus on contemporary state-of-the-art management of heart rhythm disorders and cardiac devices with the latest updates in electrophysiology. 

Cadence & referral updates for UT Health Physicians

Take a look at changes and new Cadence features currently in production. The purpose of these changes is

to prevent loss of revenue, for manager tracking and for staff referral WQ tracking. 

Download this PowerPoint to see changes and new Cadence features currently in production. 


A summary of changes are as follows:

  • To prevent loss of revenue, the ability of staff to continue past prompts notifying them that the referral was past the authorization date, or the number of referral has been exhausted, has been eliminated.
  • To prevent loss of revenue, visit type instructions for telephone calls have been implemented for staff to review payors, as some payors will no longer paying for telephone calls.
  • For manager tracking, referral columns of days in WQ have been added to provide an at-the-glance view of how long referrals have been in the WQ. 
  • For staff referral WQ tracking, deferred referral reasons have been added to more accurately describe why referrals were deferred.

Do you have questions, issues, or other suggestions for improvements? Please provide feedback to the Cadence team.

Fiscal year 2021 performance review process opens June 1
by Human Resources

The fiscal year 2021

performance review process will

launch June 1 to evaluate staff employees' performance. This process is designed to provide flexibility, while still recognizing meaningful contributions and accomplishments.  

The fiscal year 2021 performance review process will launch June 1, 2021 to evaluate staff* employees' performance. The performance review process is designed to provide flexibility during these unprecedented times, while still recognizing meaningful contributions and accomplishments.  


Simplified performance review process this year 
Performance reviews will recognize our workforce’s agility, innovation and collaboration during the year. A simplified rating system will allow managers to give one overall performance rating and encourage discussions around our successes, challenges, and development.   


UT Health Performs opens June 1 to complete performance reviews  
This year, the performance review process will be completed using UT Health Performs, our new goal and performance management system. Visit the Goal and Performance Management website to learn more. 



If you have questions, talk to your supervisor or email AskHR@uthscsa.edu


*Faculty with A&P appointments should work with their department or respective Dean’s Office regarding the process and expectations for performance reviews.

Stars & Shields Spotlight: John Hilgers

John Hilgers is a Facilities Maintenance Worker who has been with UT Health San Antonio for 11 years. In this spotlight feature, read more about a day in the work life of this Gold Shield Award recipient, as well as his background and future aspirations.

Prior to moving to San Antonio, John Hilgers held a career in printing and publishing in Madison, Wisconsin for more than 30 years. Eleven years ago, he shifted his career path and joined the UT Health San Antonio team.


A handyman and an exceptional worker, John Hilgers has gone from a temporary, part-time position in the Information Management and Services Department to a full-time employee of the Facilities Management Department since joining UT Health. Throughout his tenure, Hilgers has been chosen for three different service awards, including the prestigious Gold Shield Award in 2019—a testament to his hard work and dedication.


“Originally, I took a temporary position helping in the Information Management and Services Department which required me to set up workstations for the Medical Arts & Research Center (MARC) through the IMS Service Desk,” Hilgers said. “When a position in the Facilities Management Department opened up, I applied for it and was hired. I've always been handy at fixing things and it was a good fit for me.”


As a facilities maintenance worker, Hilgers addresses a wide range of needs for UT Health Physicians, which he says is exciting and unpredictable. Most recently, he has been delivering COVID-19 vaccines and personal protective equipment as part of UT Health San Antonio’s effort to vaccinate the public and ultimately overcome the pandemic.


“Working to support health care during COVID-19 has been a challenge because of the high volume of deliveries and urgent needs, but the people I work with make my job easier,” Hilgers said. “My boss, Walter Stone, is also a great guy to work for.”


When Hilgers is not supporting the effort to vaccinate the public, he enjoys home improvement projects, woodworking and riding his Harley Davidson. He’s also a lover of rock and roll and a family man who says that if he had a million dollars, he would use it to “do anything I could to make my family happy.”


Looking back, he says the only piece of advice he would give himself at 15 years old is to “pay better attention in math class,” and looking forward, he will be retiring in May 2022 after a fulfilling and diverse career.


UT Health Physicians' Stars and Shields Awards recognize the practices, providers, clinical teams and staff who consistently go above and beyond to live out our promise to provide every patient with an exceptional patient experience. To recognize a UT Health Physicians coworker for their outstanding work in providing excellent, patient-centered care, nominate them to receive a Silver Star award at www.uthealthcare.org/stars.

COVID-19 Vaccines Available - Walk-in or schedule online

Do your part to stop the spread of COVID-19. Walk-in or schedule your vaccine appointment online.

Plastic surgery makeover special now available

Just in time for spring, take advantage of our plastic surgery makeover special! Our plastic surgeons will tailor each procedure to the needs and desires of their clients.

Spring into action: tips to safely avoid and heal sports injuries

Longer days and warmer weather are ahead, and the spring sports season has started. Dr. Jeff Svec, who specializes in both sports medicine and family medicine, offers tips to avoid and care for injuries so you can play it safe this season.

Celebrating our winter storm heroes

In the midst of a year battling the COVID-19 pandemic, San Antonio and Texas went through a week of subzero wind chill resulting in no water, no power and no heat. And, as has become the norm, our UT Health San Antonio community mobilized on a heroic scale.

Know a winter storm hero? Nominate them for a Silver Star Award

Did you catch a UT Health Star in action during the recent winter storm? If so, submit a nomination here. Nominations are due March 15 and will be celebrated in April. Any nominations received after this deadline will be celebrated the following quarter. 

Go Green for March 17

You're in luck! UT Health Physicians employees are invited to celebrate St. Patrick's Day by wearing a green shirt with blue scrub bottoms on Wednesday, March 17. Certain guidelines apply and participation is optional. 

UT Health Physicians employees are invited to celebrate St. Patrick's Day by wearing a green shirt with blue scrub bottoms on Wednesday, March 17. 


Please take note of the following participation guidelines:

  • No large brand names or logos allowed.
  • No obscene words, gestures or symbols allowed.
  • If an employee's shirt is deemed inappropriate for the workplace, they will be sent home to change and vacation leave will be used to make up their time.

View and download the flyer here. 

Your COVID-19 vaccine questions answered with Dr. Amelie Ramirez

Many people within the community are still hesitant to receive the vaccine, with concerns about safety and efficacy. Hear from our experts why getting the vaccine is not only safe, but also the best way to protect yourself and the people you love.

Precautions still urged for the vaccinated

With the COVID-19 vaccine now widely distributed throughout campus and beginning to circulate throughout the community, questions remain regarding best safety precautions and practices for vaccinated individuals.

The best COVID-19 control measure is to stay home if you are sick

Updated information on COVID-19 testing and control in the setting of high-risk exposures can be found on our COVID-19 site.

UT Health cardiothoracic surgeon elected to leadership position of prestigious organization

John Calhoon, MD, professor and cardiothoracic surgeon at UT Health was recently named first vice president and president-elect of The Society of Thoracic Surgeons.

Surgeon reflects on courage displayed during a pandemic

A year of courageous acts inspired Dharam Kaushik, MD, urologic cancer surgeon at UT Health San Antonio to publish an essay about what the word courage means to him. The essay, titled “Broken Tumor, Intact Courage,” was published Feb. 3 in the American Journal of Kidney Diseases. 

Return to work policy for COVID-19 exposure and infection

All UT Health San Antonio employees who have had a positive COVID-19 test will be required to have a physical examination by a Wellness 360 healthcare provider or their primary healthcare provider before returning to work.

Praise report: Applauding your work to provide COVID-19 vaccines

Patients are sending your practice leaders kudos on your work in creating a seamless vaccine experience.

"Sending you congratulations on your Saturday scheduled COVID injections for your patients. My husband and I were totally pleased and amazed with how the entire process was handled. Your staff was completely professional and organized. Our entire time from start to finish was 20 minutes, including our 15 minute observation time. Y'all rocked it!"



Just wanted to thank you for getting me my COVID vaccine shot today!  Also, I don't know who was responsible for organizing the MARC today for all of us getting our shots but he/she/they are to be congratulated!  It was a super good job of organizing EVERYTHING!  No waiting, nurses helping all along the way, everything going so smoothly.  A great job!"

-UT Health patient 


"Kathy and I were able to get our first COVID vaccines today. Just wanted to commend the organization and well-planned procedure. It could not have gone better."



"Jan and I received our COVID shots yesterday, and I will report that it was the best run operation I have ever experienced. We arrived a half hour early because we thought the garage would be a disaster, the lines would be long and wait times would be frustrating. I could not have been more wrong. The staff was efficient, friendly, courteous and kind--though their feet HAD to hurt and the scope of the effort seemed overwhelming. I am beyond impressed. Kudos to the planning, staffing and execution of this daunting task. The MARC needs to explain to the feds how to run a perfect campaign."



"I had my first COVID vaccine Saturday and I have to commend your team for an amazingly efficient operation. I walked in and out in less than 5 minutes, then just had to wait 15 minutes to monitor for side effects. For a task the scope of this endeavor, it’s a comfort to know the professionalism behind the planning and execution of this vital community undertaking. Congratulations to all involved."

-UT Health patient


"We have been absolutely enthralled with the unbelievable experience(s) we have encountered at the Shavano Clinic. First was our PCR test scheduling back in Oct./Nov. with super special handling and then when we returned from the Maldives just a few days ago and had another PCR test with results that evening and a vaccination the next day! The customer service, attention to detail and follow up (she called to see how we were feeling after the shot and how my foot—small problem—was doing) is over the top! Please, please, please give Maria a great big pat on the back and recognition for being simply the best!! You have an outstanding team and should be very proud of them."

-Peter & Susanne

Top U.S. cancer centers call for action to get cancer-preventing HPV vaccination back on track

The Mays Cancer Center has partnered with 71 other organizations to urge the

nation’s health care systems, physicians, parents and children, and young adults to get the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination back on track. 

New employees can schedule to receive COVID-19 vaccine

New employees are eligible to schedule a COVID-19 vaccination appointment through a secure online portal as soon as they have a valid UT Health San Antonio user ID and password.

Announcement about delta variant and masks

UT Health San Antonio is closely monitoring the recent increase in community prevalence and transmission of the COVID-19 virus. Given the marked increase in community prevalence and spread, it is prudent that we increase our preventive protocols so that we can continue to keep on-campus transmission rates low.