Blood drive Dec. 28

The American Red Cross will hold a blood drive at the York Street Campus, 7 am - 4:45 pm Monday, Dec. 28, East Pavilion Cafeteria special events area. The last 15 minutes of each hour will be kept open for walk-in donors. To make an appointment, visit www.redcrossblood.org and use YALENHHOSP as the sponsor code, or contact Melanie Champion at Melanie.Champion@ynhh.org.

Reminder about accepting gifts

With the holiday season under way, the Office of Privacy and Corporate Compliance reminds employees that when offered gifts, gift cards or money from patients, visitors or vendors, they should politely decline and refer the person making the offer to the development or foundation office. Perishable gifts such as fruit baskets and cookies are allowed if valued under $50, offered occasionally (quarterly or less) and shared with the employee's department. Questions? Contact the YNHHS Office of Privacy and Corporate Compliance, 203-688-8416 or compliance@ynhh.org.

IRS maximum employees can contribute to the 403(b) plan

For 2016, the Internal Revenue Service has announced that the annual maximum amount employees can contribute to their 403(b) plan, also known as a tax-sheltered annuity, will remain at 2015 levels: employees under age 50, up to $18,000 per year; employees 50 and older, up to $24,000. The hospital matches up to a maximum of 3 percent of the employee's first 5 percent contribution of base pay.

YNHH Cash Account Pension continues to earn 3.8 percent

Each Nov. 30, an employee's Cash Account Pension Plan account balance is updated by an annual pay credit, plus an interest credit, which is entirely funded by Yale New Haven Hospital. The annual interest rate credited as of Nov. 30, 2015, was 3.8 percent. As of Dec. 1, 2015, the interest rate will continue to be 3.8 percent for the coming plan year.

MyChart updates add convenience for patients

All patients who use the MyChart patient portal can now update their medications, allergies and problem lists online, so that physicians and other clinicians who use MyChart can see the updates. In addition, Yale New Haven Health System is piloting new MyChart functionality that will allow patients to start the check-in process for appointments, at their convenience, before coming in for their appointments. The pilot program launched Dec. 7 in many YNHH Old Saybrook Medical Center departments, Northeast Medical Group's Stamford internal medicine practice and Yale Medical Group neurology locations.

Weight-loss program begins in January

YNHH is offering Live Well and Lose It, a group weight-management class for employees and their adult dependents covered under the Yale New Haven Health System benefits plan with no copay or deductible. This six-session program, taught every other week by YNHH registered dietitians, includes a 30-minute lecture on topics such as best food choices, portions, dining out and staying motivated, and confidential weigh-ins and goal-setting assistance. Class schedule: 

York Street Campus:
12:15 pm Tuesdays, Jan. 12 - March 22
7:30 am Wednesdays, Jan 13 - March 23

Saint Raphael Campus:
12:15 pm Thursdays, Jan. 14 - March 24

150 Sargent Drive:

7:30 am Thursdays, Jan. 14 - March 24

Classes are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Contact ellen.liskov@ynhh.org for details. The YNHH Nutrition Clinic also offers individual appointments with a dietitian; call 203-688-2422, (YSC) or 203-789-3266 (SRC).

Smilow earns national quality certification

Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale New Haven and eight of 10 Smilow Cancer Care Centers throughout the state recently received Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI) certification from the American Society of Clinical Oncology's Institute for Quality. The three-year certification for outpatient hematology-oncology practices signifies an exceptional commitment to excellence and ongoing quality improvement. The Smilow leadership team has received certification-pending status on the two most recently acquired care centers, in Trumbull and Fairfield.