Faculty Senate Executive Committee Meeting




July 1, 2003



Present:††††††††† President Carol Garrison; Dr. Patsy Greenup; Dr. Timothy Heaven; Dr. Mark Lockhart; Kirsten Nelson; Dr. Linda Reed; Dr. John Smith


Absent:†††††††††† Dr. Theodore Benditt; Dr. Eli Capilouto; Dr. Charles Falany; Dr. Beverly Mulvihill; Dr. Pamela Murray; Dr. Gary Sapp; Dr. Joseph Telfair; Dr. John Wittig


Guests:†††††††††† Reba Belcher, Dr. Susan McWilliams




Tax Reform

A committee has been formed to organize UABís effort in support of the tax reform movement; however, no activities will be initiated until the formal legal opinion has been garnered.Dr. John Smith and Dr. Timothy Heaven provided summary of recent meetings held in Montgomery in support and/or opposition of tax reform.It was noted that Derrick Green, President of the Undergraduate Student Government Association, recommended creating an alliance of all the local universities to support the tax reform movement, as well as sponsoring voter registration drives and rallies.



UAB Strategic Plan Update

The mission/vision statements and 2008 goals have been finalized.Dr. John Lyons is working with the Deans to complete the intermediate goals which will be refined over the next 3-4 months.Final revisions have been made to the Provost, Sr. VP for Medicine and Dean of the School of Medicine and VP for Research job descriptions which incorporate feedback from the clinical chairs.††



Feedback from Administration about Senate Recommendations

The Faculty Senate Executive Committee and Faculty Senate meetings provide excellent forums for open discussions of topics/issues that need to be addressed or require approval by the administration.It was recommended that FSEC members schedule meetings with individual administrators to ascertain the status of any recommendation sent forth or to develop a specific tracking mechanism.FSEC members will develop a diagram to aid in the tracking of recommendations.










OB/Gyn Service Proposal & Faculty Concerns

Dr. John Hauth, chair of the Department of OB/Gyn, made a presentation to the Fringe Benefits Committee (FBC) to close the OB/Gyn network for the VivaUAB plan.If the issue of exclusivity was not approved, he recommended an increase in the deductible to $1,000 for VivaUAB patients going outside the panel for deliveries.Some concerns noted were:

  • Proximity-Some VivaUAB participants live in outlying areas (e.g., Jasper); therefore, it would not be convenient for them to use only UAB facilities.
  • Historically, the Department of OB/Gyn has experienced difficulty with faculty retention and recruitment.

Since many females consider their OB/Gyn to be their primary care physician, a discussion ensued that encompassed all female issues including mammograms.Although the time varies, the wait times for appointments are usually between 8-11 months for screening mammograms.It was noted that diagnostic or emergent situations receive high priority and good response for immediate appointments.


It was noted that the VivaUAB plan is closed panel for all other services.Dr. Garrison requested that the FBC create a rate analysis that compares only OB/Gyn costs in closed versus open panel plans.The FBC will meet in mid-July and submit a recommendation to Dr. Garrison for consideration shortly thereafter.


Benefits Office Hotline Problems

The Faculty Senate requested an enhancement to the FlexCard which would provide immediate balance information to participants.At present, there are three ways for the participants to access their balance:

  • Quarterly statements are issued in the 3rd and 4th quarter denoting transaction/balance information.
  • A statement is issued after each paper claim.
  • Participants can access their account information via the website using the Sykes Health Plan Services (SHPS) link [www.shps.net].

The FlexCard/Benefits Hotline issue will be added to the July 8th Faculty Senate agenda.Dr. Susan McWilliams will attend to address this issue.Other discussion included frequent changes in Caremarkís formulary.Also, the FSEC members complimented Reba Belcher on the Ombudsman system that was implemented.










Annual Evaluation Survey-Update on Senate Project

The Faculty Senate asked the Deans what kind of evaluation mechanism is used in their schools including post-tenure review.Some of the long-term goals of this inquiry were to ensure there was some mechanism within the schools and to strengthen the Faculty Handbook verbiage with regard to this matter.

It is imperative that a comprehensive review system exists that is supportive in nature as well as is maintained/conducted by the faculty.The Faculty Senate has set a goal to establish an annual evaluation system.


Campus Planning for Enhanced Instructional Space

At the June Board of Trustees meeting, Dr. Smith noted two items listed in the budget:a new facility for the School of Social and Behavorial Sciences and replacement of the chemistry/biology labs.Both of these issues have been on UABís list to address but the issue of funding these projects was difficult.In reviewing the campus goals, it is imperative to review the quality of facilities as well.Dr. Garrison requested that this issue be placed on the next Faculty Senate agenda.