5.26 | Monday, April 29, 2013
Our problems aren't insurmountable
2013 -- Connectivity, Globalization, Capacity, Service, Outreach; these
are just a few of the many words that can be used to help describe Dr.
Ray Greenberg's vision for the Medical University of South Carolina.
the school's president, Greenberg is charged with not only ensuring that
MUSC remains one of the top research and healthcare facilities in the
country, but he is also tasked with maintaining and growing one of Charleston's
brilliant person by all accounts, Greenberg's vast wealth of knowledge
goes beyond Chemistry and the Sciences, but no matter the subject, he
has a way of clearly articulating his viewpoints and framing them in a
manner that most people can appreciate.
recently took a moment from his jam-packed schedule to chat with Envision
South Carolina's Phil Noble about everything healthcare and the vital
importance of telemedicine to South Carolina's goal of becoming "World
How is MUSC currently operating as a "Globally Connected" University
at this time?
GREENBERG: A key part of our strategic plan at the University is to expand our global outreach. Basically it's recognizing the fact that the world is now a small community and that we have a connectedness to people, and cultures and systems around the world, so we're trying to do that in all aspects of our activity.
For example on the educational front: so many of the pharmaceutical, clinical trials are being offshored to India, and probably soon China and the rest of Asia, yet they don't really have the workforce there that's been trained in the scientific underpinnings of doing good clinical trials research. So we've taken our Master of Science in Clinical Research Degree Program which was only offered on our campus to our own folks to train them, and we're now taking that to India, to Singapore and soon I hope to China, where there will be huge important audiences for us to get that MUSC education out to. At the same time from a research point of view, if you look at partnerships that we can develop in say China, just the sheer numbers of patients that you have with sometimes uncommon conditions, it would be very difficult to study here. It becomes much easier to do it in a country where numbers are not a problem. That's a great opportunity from a research point of view. And then from a service point of view, we have lots of outreach.
a program we have in Africa where as we've partnered with Ghana, Tanzania;
a number of countries where we're trying to build capacity. For years
there have been medical missions where people from the United States have
gone and provided services for some period of time, often a month, then
they've disappeared and all they've sort of done is help a few people.
They haven't created the capacity to change a culture. And I think we're
recognizing today, we should be focused on training the people within
the country to better be able to serve the needs of their population so
that when we're not there the services can be continued.
Many agree that there are long-standing disparities in healthcare in our
State. Some don't believe they can be changed. What can MUSC do to help
address some of these disparities in South Carolina?
GREENBERG: We (South Carolinians) think the problems are so big, they're insurmountable. They've been there for decades, if not centuries; there's no hope of addressing them. I think that's the first myth.
myth is even if they're changeable, one person can't make that much of
a difference. The state created the Endowed Chairs Program almost a decade
ago now and the idea was to recruit into South Carolina some of the best
minds in the country that would help drive our economy forward. One of
the people we ended up attracting to the Medical University of South Carolina
was Dr. Robert Adams. He came to us from Georgia and he's a stroke specialist.
At the time South Carolina had the highest death rate from stroke in the
world; certainly the highest in the United States.
What was this time period?
GREENBERG: Late 90's; early part of this century. What Dr. Adams had done was, he set up a network where the stroke specialist at the academic institution would be available through telemedicine to be connected to rural emergency departments, so that when a patient came in with a stroke they could immediately get connected to the specialist who would then help the local doctor figure out what tests needed to be done and most importantly, get initiated definitive treatment as quickly as possible. A stroke is really a race against time So you want to get that treatment started very quickly at the first place the patient shows up.
This telemedicine network that Dr. Adams basically, singlehandedly assembled in South Carolina has the Medical University at its core, its so-called hub, and its spokes go out to 15 hospitals, particularly smaller rural hospitals in the I-95 corridor This program has been in place now for 4 or 5 years, over 3000 consultations have taken place, over 500 patients have gotten state-of-the-art treatment who wouldn't have gotten it before, and now the death rate from stroke (has decreased). We're still barely in the top 10, but that's a dramatic change in less than a decade from the number 3 cause of death and certainly one of our leading health problems in the state.
is not the answer to all of our problems, but it can be an important connection.
Fundamentally telemedicine removes geography as a barrier to getting the
best care possible. It should never matter today whether you live in Charleston,
Kingstree, Moncks Corner, or Lake City, you should have access to the
best specialists that are available. Technology can bridge the geography
and that I believe is a huge promise particularly to the rural parts of
How far are we from being at the maximum of providing that telemedicine
We are a far ways away from being at the maximum
The positive spin
on this is that I've had conversations with some of our legislative leaders
and I think for the first time they will help appropriate money that will
help expand the telemedicine effort in this state. Just as other states
inspiring, heroic story of William Pinckney
Beaufort County native, who would have turned 98 on this past Saturday,
is such a hero that the U.S. Navy named a destroyer after him, the USS
26, 1942, during the Battle of Santa Cruz, Pinckney was a Navy cook on
the USS Enterprise when two Japanese bombs hit the ship. Pinckney, born
in 1915 in the Dale community, was knocked unconscious when a five-inch
shell exploded in the magazine he was manning. Four sailors died. When
he came to, fire raged through the smoke-filled magazine. As he was trying
to find a way out, he came upon gunner's mate James Bagwell, who outweighed
Pinckney by 20 pounds and was too weak to climb through an escape hatch,
according to a Navy report.
Pinckney picked up Bagwell to get through the hatch. On the way, an electrical
cable touched Pinckney, knocking him unconscious. When he came to again,
he got Bagwell up a ladder and to safety. Then "ignoring the burns
that had taken the skin off his hands, right leg and back," Pinckney
went back into the magazine to see if anyone else was alive. Minutes later,
he returned, collapsed and got treatment.
modestly said he "did help a little here and there ... When the first
guy seemed to be surviving pretty good, I went below to see if I could
help someone else but they were all killed and I couldn't help anyone."
treated for shrapnel wounds and third-degree burns, received a Purple
Heart and the Navy Cross -- the service's second highest award for extraordinary
heroism. After the war, he and his wife, Beaufort County native Henrietta,
eventually moved to Brooklyn, N.Y. where Pinckney served as a cook in
the Merchant Marine for 26 years. Then the couple returned home to Beaufort.
Pinckney died in 1976 of spinal cancer and is buried in Beaufort National
Cemetery. Mrs. Pinckney still lives in Beaufort, the Navy says.
about his time in the Navy, Pinckney would "often tear up, saying
only that he was 'proud to serve.'" And that's the motto of the destroyer
that was named for him when commissioned in 2004.
of the Navy Ray Mabus last week told Statehouse Report that all
sailors and Marines are heroic because they risk their lives to protect
those men and women confront incredibly difficult and dangerous situations
and, without regard for personal safety, act to save lives, we call them
heroes," Mabus said. "'Hero' is a label we use to help us understand
how someone like Navy Cook First Class William Pinckney could act so selflessly
in the face of mortal danger.
Secretary, I have had the profound honor to award many of these heroes
with medals, some posthumously. Not one medal recipient, family member
or comrade in arms accepted that label. It isn't false modesty. It is
simply the shared belief that they were just doing their job."
Pinckney's story stirred Beaufort Mayor Billy Keyserling.
should all sing out loud as this is an inspiration for this and future
generations -- how a man of modest means follows his moral compass to
do the right thing for someone in dire need, risking his life to save
are so many young men who waste their lives listlessly on street corners
in baggy pants or thinking that brandishing a firearm gives them an identity
when Pinckney's star should be shining more brightly than a rock star
or athlete or drug pusher."
like William Pinckney and all of the people who rushed to help victims
of the recent Boston Marathon bombings motivate us to do better -- to
be more selfless, more compassionate, more helpful and less partisan,
less demanding, less irritable.
our state legislators could learn a little something from Beaufort County's
inspirational cook. We need them to do what needs to be done to help lift
South Carolina out of the country's basement so we can all shine.
Got a gripe? Got some praise?
Florence Crittenton Programs of South Carolina
The public spiritedness of our underwriters allows us to bring Charleston Currents to you at no cost. This week, we welcome our nonprofit partner for the coming year, the Florence Crittenton Programs of South Carolina. The organization, which got its start in Charleston in 1897, provides young, at-risk pregnant and parenting women with comprehensive services to help them become self-sufficient and responsible mothers. Its residential program is for pregnant girls and young women from 10 to 21 from anywhere in South Carolina. Its family development program provides home-based support services to at-risk, low-income single parents with children ages 5 and under throughout the Tri-County area. To learn more, visit online at www.FlorenceCrittentonSC.org. To see its wish list, click here.
not to be critical about lots of tax policies
APRIL 29, 2013 -- Tax filing time has come (and gone for most of us) and it is hard not to be critical of it all. Take our own state. Did you know that...
How is anyone to know all the various details of both our local and national code, much less keep up the annual changes? I dislike encouraging folks to go to sharp, knowledgeable tax preparers, but it is clear that we all pay a price for trying to do our own returns. Yikes!
Also of note:
program to probe history of Gaillard graves
Historical and archaeological experts will offer an update on efforts to figure out the identity of the people in 37 graves recently discovered at the Gaillard Center construction site in downtown Charleston.
Nic Butler, a public historian who manages the Charleston County Public
Library's Charleston archives, will give an overview of the site's history
during a 6 p.m. May 1 presentation at the main library about the graves.
Brockington and Associates Senior Archaeologist Dr. Eric Poplin will discuss
the continuing efforts to excavate and analyze these long-forgotten remains.
a trench at the Gaillard Center construction site in February, workers
exposed a long-lost graveyard with the graves of 37 adults, teenagers
and children believed to have lived between 1690 and 1750. The City of
Charleston authorized the removal and re-interment of graves to an appropriate
location that has yet to be determined.
Initial examination of the graves indicates that the site was an active burial site for several years, and not created for a sudden purpose, such as a mass illness. The remains, buried on their backs and facing east in the accepted Christian position, were recovered with coins meant to cover eyes per burial tradition, buttons and pieces of broken ceramics. The minimal coffin materials found indicate that the individuals came from the lower rungs of society.
the May 1 presentation, Butler and Poplin will discuss updated excavation
findings, analysis expectations and plans for future study.
Local groups win grants, more
local organizations have won grants recently that will help them further
Something new to do: Wadmalaw tour of attractions
A new all-inclusive
$46 excursion package will allow locals and visitors to spend a day visiting
three top attractions on Wadmalaw Island: Firefly Distillery, Irvin~House
Vineyards and the Charleston Tea Plantation.
April 30 and every Tuesday and Thursday thereafter, you can enjoy "Island
Sip and See," a stress-free ride out to Wadmalaw via the Lowcountry
Loop Trolley with the opportunity to spend time at all three destinations
for an excursion on the island they will never forget.
in "Island Sip and See" excursion package is: a factory and
trolley tour at America's only working tea garden, the Charleston
Tea Plantation, as well as all the hot or iced tea you can want and
a catered lunch by Johns Island's hidden gem, The Stono Café. Guests
will then explore beautiful Irvin~House
Vineyards and enjoy a tasting of all five of their wine varietals
with a complimentary souvenir wine glass. Lastly, guests will enjoy true
Southern spirits at the Firefly
Distillery, where they can taste six of the latest distilled spirits
and be treated with a souvenir shot glass. Once the day is complete, guests
can hop back on the trolley and relax for a quick ride back to the Holy
The air-conditioned Lowcountry Loop Trolley will pick up guests at the Charleston Visitors Center on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9:30 a.m., as well as from surrounding area hotels by reservation only. Seating is limited and reservations are strongly encouraged. Please plan on a full day, as the tour will last roughly about five and a half hours. Tickets are online here. More info: call 843-654-5199.
Casting call for "The Biggest Loser' is May 4
Charleston is one of 11 cities across the nation where the NBC hit series "The Biggest Loser" will have casting calls.
The show, looking for contestants for its 15th season, seeks people who have at least 80 pounds to lose, according to a press release.
"Casting producers are looking for charismatic individuals who have the desire to change their lives for every and vie for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to lose weight and compete for a grand prize of $250,000."
call will be 10 a.m. May 4 at the Music Farm, 32 Ann Street, Charleston.
Candidates must be at least 18 and can start lining up at 7 a.m. Learn
more online at: www.thebiggestlosercasting.com
Along the coasts of Florida, Alabama, Georgia, and the Carolinas, tabby was introduced by the Spanish in the seventeenth century as a low-cost and accessible building material. It was manufactured following methods long practiced throughout southern Spain by mixing various compounds including earth, limestone, and clay with lime and then pounding or pouring the resultant mix between boards positioned to define the required building shape. Once the cast was set, the form work was dismantled, repositioned, and refilled with the mix at successively higher building levels.
Tabby in North America is distinguished by the use of oyster shell aggregates and lime derived by burning shells. As with the earlier manufacture along the Mediterranean, the lime and the aggregate were mixed with sand and water and tamped into reusable wooden forms, usually made of horizontal tongue-and-groove timbers. The French Duc de La Rochefoucauld-Liancourt provides a late eighteenth-century observation of the casting process he saw in Beaufort County: "Mortar is poured into frames the length and thickness of the wall to be constructed. These forms have no bottoms but their sides are joined at certain intervals at top and bottom by pieces of wood. The mortar is pounded in with force and when brim full left for two or three days."
Although no tabby structure securely dated before 1730 survives above ground in South Carolina or Georgia, it is clear that tabby played an important role in shelter and defenses for early Europeans. Other durable building materials, such as brick and stone, were not easily available, especially in the Sea Islands, which lacked outcrops of clay and rock.
Recent research indicates that tabby manufacture was understood around Charleston before 1726, but it did not appear in Beaufort County until construction began in 1731 at Fort Frederick on the Beaufort River. Eventually it became ubiquitous to Beaufort County, where it was used in fortifications, houses, stores, and a variety of outbuildings. It is now represented by a handful of structures in the city of Beaufort (including the Barnwell-Gough House, Tabby Manse, and the Saltus House) and on Spring, St. Helena, Callawassie and Hilton Head Islands.
Naming that bird
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Five things to know about Cinco de Mayo
Rain also causes rainbows
"And when it rains on your parade, look up rather than down. Without the rain, there would be no rainbow."
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IN THE WEEK AHEAD
Reasonfest: 7 p.m., May 2, Gage Hall, 4 Archdale Street, Charleston. The Secular Humanists of the Lowcountry will mark the National Day of Reason and raise funds for a local homeless shelter at this event, which will feature comic Jennifer Bianchi and poet/songwriter Jim Lundy. More.
(NEW) North Charleston Arts Festival: May 3-11, various locations around North Charleston, including the Charleston Area Convention Center Complex and the North Charleston Performing Arts Center. The nine-day festival will feature many free events including storytelling, music, dance and more. Full schedule is online here: NorthCharlestonArtsFest.com
Splish, splash: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays starting May 4. Charleston County's three water parks open on weekends only on May 4 with full-time summer operation starting May 27 until mid-August. More.
CONTINUING AND IN THE WEEKS AHEAD
Golftoberfest: 11 a.m. May 7, Wild Dunes Resort, Isle of Palms. The Charleston RiverDogs will hold its 8th annual charity golf tournament inspired by Germany's Oktoberfest. Each hole will be named after an authentic Oktoberfest beer tent and include German-themed fun. Learn more: RileyParkEvents.com
Industry Day: 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., May 9, Charleston Area Convention Center, North Charleston. The Charleston Post of the Society of American Military Engineers will hold its annual industry day with speakers and networking opportunities. Register here. Contact: Melvin Williams.
(NEW) 43rd Greek Festival: May 10-12, Greek Orthodox Church, 30 Race Street, Charleston. You'll have a ball eating Greek food and pastries and drinking Greek wine. There's dancing, tours and lots of cultural events. Cost is $5 for adults, $3 for seniors and students, free for kids 12 and under. More: CharlestonGreekFestival.com
Color in Freedom Experience: Through May 20, Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture. This interactive exhibit involving the Underground Railway experience offers 49 works by artist Joseph Holston. More.
(NEW) Run to Remember: 6:30 p.m., May 23, Mount Pleasant Pier, Mount Pleasant. The Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission offers the inaugural evening run as a way to kick off Memorial Day celebrations. Online registration is open through May 22 at www.ccprc.com.
(NEW) Great watercolors: May 24 to Sept 15, Gibbes Museum of Art, Charleston. In conjunction with Spoleto Festival USA, the Gibbes will present watercolors created in Charleston in the early 1990s by celebrated contemporary artists Stephen Mueller and Carl Palazzolo, who will give an opening day gallery talk at 2:30 p.m. at the museum. Art is from the collection David and Carol Rawle. More: GibbesMuseum.org
Images due by June 6. Magnolia Plantation and Gardens is holding
its annual photo contest for photos taken at the attraction between March
1 and May 31. Entry is $25. To enter and look at rules, visit the Lowcountry
Bird walks: 8:30 a.m. to noon, every Wednesday and Saturday. This is the time of year that a great variety of migrating birds fly through the Lowcountry so what better time to take part in one of the regular early morning bird walks at Caw Caw Interpretive Center in Ravenel. Pre-registration is suggested. Cost is $5. Walks also are conducted on James Island and Folly Beach.Learn more online.
Noble: Envision SC