By Jo McCulty
Ohio State graffiti wall
Cheria Dial, program coordinator for the University Honors & Scholars Center, adds her comments to a graffiti wall at a March 27 open house for The Women's Place. The graffiti wall is functioning as a survey of opinions about the various roles and benefits of The Women's Place at Ohio State. The Women's Place is located in 5046 Smith Lab.
New service improves access to medical care outside Ohio, abroad
Obtaining medical care while traveling outside of Ohio and abroad will soon be easier for Ohio State faculty and staff. Starting May 1, the University will enter into a partnership with GlobalCare, an international firm which provides referrals to medical providers, language interpretation and other services to guide patients through an unfamiliar health care system.
GlobalCare services will be provided free to faculty and staff members and their dependents who are enrolled in a University medical plan and to faculty, staff and student employees not enrolled in a University medical plan but who are traveling on University-sponsored business.
"We are pleased to be able to offer this free service to Ohio State faculty and staff," said Judith V. Kadja, director of benefits and wellness services."GlobalCare will fulfill a valuable need, easing the minds of those who travel for work or personal reasons throughout the United States and abroad."
GlobalCare is not an insurance provider."It is meant to assist the traveler in accessing medical treatment. Eligible expenses incurred will still be insured by the University sponsored health plan in which the faculty or staff member is enrolled," Kadja said.
Outside of Ohio, but within the United States, GlobalCare can provide referrals to more than 650,000 health care providers and more than 5,400 hospital facilitates. Outside the United States, GlobalCare can provide pre-trip consultations and make referrals to carefully screened, English-speaking medical providers in more than 190 countries. It also can provide interpretation of at least 140 languages and dialects in support of medical situations.
The program includes 24-hour access to a registered nurse, who can offer a telephone triage to assess the nature of a medical condition and direct the traveler to medical care he or she believes is appropriate.
If unable to obtain access to medical care due to a required payment, with the proper prior approval from the University, GlobalCare will advance cash funds to the traveler or the medical care provider. Repayment of this advance may come from the faculty or staff member's health insurance.
GlobalCare also can assist and manage air evacuation to the closest appropriate care facility and/or return to the home country when medically necessary. Any direct costs will be administered and paid according to the medical insurance plan's guidelines.
Other services include: Notification of personal contacts in the event of a medical emergency; assistance in arranging for the return of the physical remains to the city of residence in the event of a death away from home; and assistance in obtaining an equivalent prescription if prescription medications are lost or stolen. GlobalCare does not practice medicine or diagnose medical conditions and does not recommend a specific physician, nor does it represent the quality of medical care the traveler will receive.
Ohio State professor embarks on fifth trip to oversee Bosnian electionsBy Amy Murray
An Ohio State professor is on his fifth trip to oversee elections in Bosnia, continuing his crusade for democracy and peace there.
Okey Onyejekwe, director of the Center for African Studies, is part of an international team supervising the April 8 parliamentary elections mandated by the 1995 Dayton Peace Accord. He supervised elections in Bosnia in 1995 and 1998, and twice in 1997.
The U.S. State Department and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the group organizing the elections, selected Onyejekwe for the position. An associate professor of African and African-American studies and associate professor of journalism and communications, he has written position papers for the State Department on U.S. policies in Africa and on the process of democratization.
"Our plans now are to work with the Bosnians. When you have major ethnic conflicts, you need outsiders to nudge the democratic process along. But there is a limit to how much you can get involved," Onyejekwe said."We will continue to work as election observers, but we hope they will need fewer supervisors, which have a more hands-on role."
While Onyejekwe expects to face many of the same obstacles he encountered in earlier supervisory trips -- land mines and a heavily armed citizenry -- he also hopes to find signs that the Bosnians are ready to take charge of the election process and also take the lead in becoming a democratic society.
As an election supervisor, Onyejekwe will work with local elections officials to make sure voting rules are followed, determine voter eligibility, resolve disputes, and oversee accountability and ballot security.
In 1994, Onyejekwe served as a United Nations election observer for South Africa's first multiracial elections.
A native of Nigeria, Onyejekwe says he knows well the kinds of challenges facing Bosnians.
"I know from Nigeria in the late"60s and early"70s, that it takes a lot of outsiders to help make it easier for people to talk to each other," he says."But it is a balancing act. While people appreciate the help, they don't want you to dictate. They want assistance but resent it at the same time."
Physics faculty named as fellowsBy Pam Frost
The American Physical Society and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers have recognized five members of Ohio State's Department of Physics for their contributions to physics research.
Four faculty -- Jason Ho, Robert Perry, Eric Herbst and Alan Van Heuvelen, all professors of physics -- were named fellows in the American Physical Society (APS). Len Brillson, professor of physics and electrical engineering and a scholar at Ohio State's Center for Materials Research, has been recognized as a fellow in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
"These award winners demonstrate the depth of experience in our department," said Will Saam, chair of the Department of Physics, one of the University's eight departments to receive Selective Investment funding."The new fellows of the APS and IEEE are being recognized for significant contributions to their fields of research over the course of their careers."
The American Physical Society elects as fellows"only such members who have contributed to the advancement of physics by independent, original research or who have rendered some other special service to the cause of the sciences." Each year, up to only 0.5 percent of all APS members may be elected fellows.
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers provides recognition to individuals whose"contributions to the art and science of electro- and information technologies worldwide have improved the quality of daily life." In any one year, no more than 0.1 percent of IEEE members may receive this honor.