Published in February 1999 issue of The Mercury

Top teachers, researchers get awards

by Jerry Harben

Three outstanding AMEDD members were recognized with annual awards Nov. 30 during the Medical Command Preceptors' Conference.

COL William Cahill, chief of staff for Madigan Army Medical Center and the Northwest Regional Medical Command, received the Dean Toland Award as Preceptor of the Year. MAJ Larry Fulton, a resident at Fort Polk, La., MEDDAC in the Army-Baylor Graduate Program in Medical Administration, received the Boone Powell Award for Excellence in Student Research. Dr. A. David Mangelsdorff, a professor at the AMEDD Center and School, received the Researcher of the Year Award for the Baylor faculty member who produced the highest quality research and publications during the year.

"A preceptor is a formal part of the graduate health-care administration program at Baylor. We mentor, guide, direct, influence, teach and advise students in the second year of the program," Cahill said. "We ensure the student learns during that year, and is exposed to as much of the health-care environment as possible, and meets the academic requirements of Baylor for a Master's degree."

"The key is to lead by example," he continued. "We want the residents to see the front office in action, and see different problems and solutions. Since most of the students are admin, we ensure a strong clinical lash-up. We find sponsors who will provide high-quality experience in the private sector, because whatever is going on in the nation is going to land on our doorstep, too. (At Madigan) we also send them to Canada to see a national health-care system at work."

Cahill, who is retiring this month after 30 years of service, is the consultant for health-care administration to The Surgeon General.

Fulton's strategic analysis of reengineering Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital was selected as the best graduate management project of the year. Projects are graded by faculty based on six criteria: scholarship, accuracy, analytical ability, thoroughness, erudition, intellectual quality and professionalism.

Fulton's project included an outpatient model to determine the efficiency of the organization's business processes, a web site, a system for scheduling appointments through the Internet, a patient-advocate computer program for tracking patient complaints and compliments, a program for tracking morning-report data, and a program for managing the health readiness of units on Fort Polk.

Mangelsdorff had a busy year in which he published professional articles; served as an editor and reviewer for three publications; organized a special issue on cohesion for Military Psychology; organized workshops and symposia; consulted with the U.S. Embassy in Suriname on traumatic-stress disorders, use of the Internet and telecommunications capabilities; and represented the United States on international research study groups and cooperative programs with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and The Technical Cooperation Program.