FAQ (help) for the Anesthesiology IntRAnet:

("FAQ" is computer jargon for "Frequently Asked Questions".)

General questions

If the computer asks me to Login, what data do I enter?
Certain sites on the Intranet web (specifically sites that display personal data) require an authenticated user. Most people will use the same username and password they use to access their e-mail, but there are certain differences. Depending on your computer operating system and browser version, you may receive different authentication requests. If you receive a two-field login request as shown on top at the right, enter your domain (stargate, uchausers, uch, etc.) before your username in the "User Name" field. Separate your domain from your username with a backslash.

If you receive a three field login request as shown to the right on the bottom, enter your username, password, and domain in separate text boxes as shown. Note that in every case, each data item (username, password, and domain) must appear exactly once and only once.

I am unable to view certain web pages from home because the system will not allow me to authenticate myself (log on). I can view them without difficulty from my office computer. What is the problem?

The inability to authenticate oneself remotely is almost always caused by your computer, software and/or ISP (Internet Service Provider). Known issues include these:

  • You must be using Microsoft Internet Explorer version 5 or higher. Netscape and older browser versions will not work.
  • Some older versions of AOL will not allow authentication to occur. Upgrade to a new version.
  • Some firewall settings will block the authentication handshaking between your computer and the server. As I learn the particulars of these problems I will add them to this FAQ.
  • Some ISP's will not allow authentication for "security" reasons. ISP's with these limitations are becoming fewer and fewer but some may still exist.
  • There may be some browser settings that block authentication. The default settings usually work but if you have made some changes, check to see that these changes are not the cause of the problem.
  • MAC's do not handle Javascript correctly so some web sites will not work correctly. I have not heard that MAC users have had trouble with authentication.
How can I send a memo to a group of department members without having to enter all their names individually?
Outlook maintains many group mailing lists. The lists for our department include the following:
  • anes.Providers@uchsc.edu -- Includes anesthesia providers at UCH and VAH. This includes members of the "clinFaculty", "Residents", and "CRNAs" lists below plus the pre-anesthesia testing nurses and a few others.
  • anes.clinFaculty@uchsc.edu -- Includes only regular faculty at UCH and VAH who care for who are involved in direct patient care.
  • anes.Faculty@uchsc.edu -- Includes all department faculty (including clinical faculty included in the clinical list above and research faculty included in the research list below) and some of their secretaries and administrators.
  • anes.Residents@uchsc.edu -- Includes all department residents and residency the residency secretary.
  • anes.CRNAs@uchsc.edu -- Department CRNAs.
  • anes.Research@uchsc.edu -- Members of the department's research division.
  • anes.Other@uchsc.edu -- Other department staff members (some are also included in other lists when appropriate). This list does not include faculty, residents or CRNAs.

As with all addresses entered in Outlook, only enough of the address need be entered to make it unique. Outlook will then fill out the address. Thus entering 'anes.clin' is currently enough to obtain the address and send mail to our clinical faculty.

What's the easiest way to access common outside web pages?

Call schedule questions

How do I obtain a copy of the faculty call schedule?
Click on the faculty call schedule link on the department's IntRAnet page or IntRAnet drop down list (shortcut). This page has links to several call schedule related pages. Most importantly, from this page you can specify the start date and length parameters for the faculty call schedule you want from this page. You can also specify whether you want the schedule with names in the left hand column or assignments in the left hand column. Once you specify what you want, clicking the "Submit" button will tell the server to query the call schedule database for the data you want, format it, and send it to your browser.
How do I figure out what the abbreviations on the call schedule mean?

You can see their meanings here, or by clicking the appropriate link on the call schedule parameter specification page (see above).

How do I request vacation days, non-clinical days, and/or specific days (not) to be on call?
On the call schedule index page is a link called "Submit request". This will take you to the schedule request page. Your username should be displayed. Show all will display four months of requests starting on the specified Start Date. Add or Delete will perform the corresponding action for the call specified for the inclusive date range specified (but for only a maximum of 9 days at a time). Check the right hand column to see if your request was accepted or if you were wait listed for the request. Currently only 3 people can request to be away on any given day (although that limit may change). To delete requests you need to confirm the deletion before it actually is entered into the database. Note that the request database is separate from the actual call schedule database.
Technical information
In administrative mode the username can be set and the limits imposed on the maximum number of individuals who can be away at the same time can be overridden. Admin mode is automatic for specified individuals and is indicated by the words "admin mode" in red type at the end of the first sentence of the left hand column. Override mode can be entered by administrative personnel by adding "?Admin=override" at the end of the URL.
How can I export my call schedule to my Outlook calendar and/or my Palm Pilot?
On the call schedule index page is a link called "Export schedule" (shortcut). This will prompt you for a date range to export. The program will already know whose schedule to export by knowing who is logged on. Next it will ask you for a file name into which to put the exported data. I recommend using the default file name and putting the file on your desktop. You will receive instructions on how to then import the file into Outlook. Once the file is imported, synchronizing your Palm Pilot with Outlook will transfer your schedule data to your Palm Pilot. The schedule information will be date stamped but not time stamped and will appear at the top of the entries for whatever date you're looking at.
Technical information
The appropriate information is extracted from the call schedule database, converted to a .csv file with the appropriate parameter labels so Outlook knows were to put it, and the file is then downloaded to the user's computer. Note that only individuals included in the Faculty table in the WebParms.mdb database on Mustang can perform this function because this is how the logon username is converted to a Physician Scheduler faculty abbreviation.
How can I get a summary of how many calls (or other assignments) I've had this year?
On the call schedule index page is a link called "Summary data" (shortcut). From this page, specify the dates and assignments for which you want a summary and click Submit.
How can I check how many vacation days I have left?
On the call schedule index page is a link called "Off-time balance" (shortcut). Displayed will be your vacation, sick and education balances computed in the following way: Starting with your balance on the "Balance confirmed through" date (which is your payroll balance on that day confirmed with Gary Wylie), vacation taken through today (according to the call schedule database) is subtracted. You can change the date through which your vacation is subtracted. You may choose in add days that you might reasonably expect to earn through the "earned through" date by checking the box.
Technical information
Regular faculty members will see only their own balances using this site. Administrators (as defined in the program by a simple list) can see the balances for everyone. Starting balances are contained in the OffTimeData table in the WebParms.mdb database on Mustang. Dates defining the relevant period for the summary data are contained in the Dates table of the same database file.
How do I notify you of call schedule trades so the master schedule can be updated?
On the IntRAnet page in the column of links on the left side of the page under "Faculty" is a link labeled "Call schedule changes." Clicking that link will produce a form for reporting call schedule trades. Submitting the form will send an e-mail to Phyllis so she can enter your changes in the official call schedule database.
How is the call schedule reconciled?
Many times people's actual daily assignments are different than specified on the call schedule: Individuals may be "bumped" from the OR, assigned to the VA or Fitzsimmons when the call schedule states they are in the UCH OR, or someone may be asked to work when the call schedule lists them as out of the OR. To keep the call schedule and actual work assignments in sync it is necessary to reconcile the call schedule. Accomplishing this means that, in theory, a support staff person must check to see who actually is working in the OR on a daily basis and appropriately correct the data on the call schedule.
Technical information
A three step process breaks this task up into separate, manageable parts. First, someone has to confirm actual work assignments on a daily basis. This information is entered into a database using a program that displays the existing (or updated) daily assignments, allows changed assignments to be easily entered, and saves the result. This program is designed so that a person with no knowledge of how Physician Scheduler (our commercial call scheduling program) works can enter the assignment changes. Similarly, this individual does not need to have Physician Scheduler installed on his or her computer.  At some later time, another program compares the assignment update information with the formal scheduling database flagging differences. Finally, at a convenient time these differences need to be manually changed in the official schedule by an individual with Physician Scheduler privileges.

OR schedule questions

How can I get a copy of tomorrow's OR schedule?
Click on the link to the 'OR Schedule' on the IntRAnet page or the IntRAnet drop-down list. You will get a copy of the schedule and a table call personnel and other assignments (e.g. VA, relief, reading day, etc.). You will need to enter your system (STARGATE or another domain server) credentials. If three fields are available, enter your username, password, and domain in the appropriate boxes. If only two fields are available (it will depend on your computer configuration which you receive), enter your domain and username in the username box separated by a back slash like this: domain\username. You must be a member of the OR schedule security group to access the schedule. See Bob Phelps if you need access and don't already have it. All anesthesia faculty and residents automatically have access.
Technical information
The OR schedule is manually transferred from SurgiServer to the web daily by UCH IS personnel using a DOS script I wrote for this purpose. Even this method can be unreliable at times because of the limitations of SurgiServer. The call information is added to the schedule using a combination of database lookup and manual entries. http://hschealth.uchsc.edu/anes/SchedDatabase/CallParams.asp looks up available on-line information and allows additoinal information to be added daily. Phyllis Tuller usually performs this task. This additional information table will only be displayed if its date matches the date of the call schedule. Both the above activities usually occur between 12:00 and 15:00 each work day.

Questions about department specific documents

Is there a quick reference list of common phone numbers?
Yes. On the department's IntRAnet page hover the mouse cursor over the top link labeled "Important Phone Numbers" in the left hand column of quick links. A list of important, commonly used phone numbers will pop out. For phone and beeper numbers of individuals see the next question.
Is there an on-line department directory?
Yes. There is a link to the directory on the IntRAnet pop-down menu and in the list of short-cuts in the left hand column of the IntRAnet home page. You can look-up several subsets of anesthesia personnel from the directory page. Beeper and office phone numbers are available to everyone. To view someone's home phone number requires that you be a member of a valid anesthesia STARGATE user group .
Can I review faculty meeting minutes on the web?
Yes. There is a link to the minutes index page in the list of short-cuts in the left hand column of the IntRAnet home page. You must be a member of an authorized anesthesia STARGATE user group and be inside the HSC/UCH firewall to view them.
Are the department's policies and procedures available on the web?
Yes. There is a link to the policy and procedures index page in the list of short-cuts in the left hand column of the IntRAnet home page. You must be a member of an authorized anesthesia STARGATE user group and be inside the HSC/UCH firewall to view them.

Questions about billable hours

►How can I view my billable hours on the web?
The Department's Incentive Plan is now based on "billable hours". Billable hours represent the number of hours one spends taking care of one or more patients with a few modifications related to time of day, call, and other factors. Faculty members can view their cases and corresponding billable hours for up to a month at a time here. It's also possible to compare one's hours to other's hours using day links on the billable hours web page. Also included in the system is a program that calculates billable hours for all individuals over longer time periods (see Bob Phelps for more information).

Miscellaneous questions

What is this "YellowCard" stuff?
"YellowCard" is a prototype system for submitting OR scheduling information over the Internet. Using the system, a form is displayed on the computer that looks similar to the physical yellow cards previously used to schedule all OR cases. The scheduler can fill out the card, click a "Submit" button and a copy of the information is stored in a database and e-mailed to the OR scheduling office. Over 10,000 cards have been submitted. This system will soon be phased out as the Hospital develops a more general and more complete system of scheduling that includes the OR as well as other hospital services.
What is the web security demonstration?

Questions specific to Bob Phelps' involvement

What programs were written and are maintained by Bob Phelps?

Bob has written and maintains most of the programs in the IntRAnet section of the anesthesiology web site. This includes the following:

What parts of the anesthesiology web site are not maintained by Bob? Who maintains them?

Kevin Kammerzell of the K2 Design Group designed and maintains most sections of our web site except for the intranet section. This includes the following sections:

  • Patient Care
  • Research
  • Education (except CRASH)
  • Residency
  • WARC
  • General
  • Conference calendar (in the Intranet and Education pages)

Bob and Kevin have coordinating the linking of the intranet section to the rest of the web site.

Phyllis Tuller does our CRASH web pages and Annamaria Malara does our staff pages.

What other applications and services does Bob maintain for the department?