2012 Fall NewsletterIn This Issue:                    A Word From…                                  Bryan Graven, Executiv...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                          Page 2   ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                            Page 3 ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                                   ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                Page 5             ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                            Page 6 Avoiding the Bac...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                                   ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                   Page 8                          ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                 Page 9            ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                Page 10The CPS Team’s Favorite Horr...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                      Page 11 What ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                               Page 12                                CPS Employee ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                        Page 13  Ha...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                              Page ...
CT Physicians’ Services                                                                                       Page 15     ...
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CPS Fall Newsletter 2012

  1. 1. 2012 Fall NewsletterIn This Issue: A Word From… Bryan Graven, Executive DirectorA Word From the It is clear that times are critical in the medical community. Practices are seeing increasing over-Executive Director P.1 head costs and lower reimbursements. The stakes are higher than ever for medical practices look- ing at forced consolidation to either join hospitals or larger practices to remain in business. De-iPad Tips and Tricks P.2 spite these issues, there is still an overwhelming demand to evolve healthcare through the use of technology.Meaningful Use Stage II Our company was formed nine years ago by several independent practices looking to save money P.3 on technology expenses and offer enterprise-level solutions that these practices independently could not afford. Almost a decade later our primary focus is still the same, although we now sup-Data Warehousing and port over eighty different business and clinical applications versus the six when we first began.Analytics P.4 How have we been able to build a scalable and efficient business model to support over 450 phy- sicians and other medical companies? Our core advantage is that we have the economies of scaleCPS Help Desk Horrors that come with a shared infrastructure, technology platforms and resources that support all of the P.5 products used by our end-user community. The more providers we have, the less expensive it isAvoid the Back-Up to provide the services we offer (visit www.cpsmdit.com for a comprehensive list). We provideApocalypse P.6 small and large practices the quality solutions they require while offering significant cost savings. A great example of using our economies of scale is creating an automated digital environment forWindows is DEAD P.6 the medical community. Healthcare providers have too many systems they need to worry about; CPS is connecting our supported medical community with any outside third-party that our physi-Dress Up Your Photos! P.7 cians need to interact with to treat their patients. Our goal is to have all patient information in one place, which is in the chart of our physicians’ EMR. We already have over thirty differentA Fall Gardening Tale P.8 interfaces with hospitals, labs, radiology, and patient portals that will continue to grow until we are 100% connected to automate the transmission of data from all third-party vendors. This will create an environment offering convenient access to clinical information and better patient care.Cheap Thrillers P.9 By being a comprehensive medical technology company, we have both clinical and business tech- nology experience to navigate through the complex demands of Meaningful Use, ICD-10, ACOs,Horror Movie Match P.10 data warehousing/analytics and enhanced workflows using proven technology as described by the example above.What CPS does on theWeekend P.11 With a significant cost saving, quality service and access to the technology you need, we are here to help your practice. With the continued support of the medical community, we will continue to grow and offerCPS Employee News P.12 solutions that meet your needs now and for the future. If you are a medical practice or healthcare company, pleaseHalloween Fun Facts P.13 call us to schedule an appointment to see how CPS can benefit your organization. We would welcome the oppor-Autumn Word Search P.13 tunity to speak with you.CPS Recipe Corner P.14-15 Bryan Look for us on
  2. 2. CT Physicians’ Services Page 2 iPad Tips and Tricks Nate Sebastiao, Network Engineer With the influx of iPads here are some features that could assist you: Be sure you have Multitasking Gestures on. Settings -> General -> Multitasking Gestures -> Turn this on to utilize the options below!! Five-finger pinch: Here you just “grab” the screen at any point to get back to the Home screen. It is quick, fast and simple. Four-finger swipe up: Want to see the multitasking bar, showing you the most recently used apps? This gesture replaces the double-tap of the Home button. You can pick a different app here or simply swipe four fingers back down to hide the multitasking bar. Four-finger swipe left / right: Thanks to this gesture, I actually don’t use the multitasking bar much, if at all, anymore. By swiping four fingers left or right, the iPad quickly moves you through your running and most recently used apps. I strategically open my most used apps one after an- other, so I can quickly swipe between Mail, Safari, and the Medstrat appfor example.In Pictures/Web browser:Two finger widen: Here you put both fingers together on the screen and separate them. This will make the pic-ture/web browser larger.Two finger pinch: Here you put both fingers wide on the screen and pitch together. This will make the picture/web browser smaller.Some other useful hints:
  3. 3. CT Physicians’ Services Page 3 Meaningful Use Stage 2 Cindy Denno, Applications SpecialistThe Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has pub-lished the final rules outlining the requirements for Stage 2of the Meaningful Use incentive program. The rules, part ofa federal incentive program for Medicare and Medicaid phy-sicians to adopt electronic health records, were co-writtenand issued in the Federal Register by the Centers for Medi-care & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the Na-tional Coordinator for Health Information Technology(ONC). Inside Story HeadlineThe big push in the Stage 2 rules is to move beyond datacollection to improving care. The final rule contains 20measures for physicians, of which 17 are core and 3 of 6 aremenu, and 19 measures for hospitals, of which 16 are coreand 3 of 6 are menu.The timing for the start of Stage 2 continues to be 2014 as in the proposed rule. Also retained is the focus on health in-formation exchange and access to health data. The Stage 1 measure for a test of exchange of key clinical information iseliminated for a more robust core objective for transitions of care in Stage 2. And instead of providing patients with an“electronic copy of their health information,” Stage 2 requires “electronic or online access” to their health data.The final rule adds “outpatient lab reporting” as a menu option for hospitals and “recording clinical notes” as a menuobjective for both physicians and hospitals. The final rule also reduces some thresholds for some measures and modifiessome criteria for exclusions based on difficulty. For example, CMS had proposed that providers send a summary of carerecord for more than 65 percent of transitions of care and referrals. The final rule decreases that threshold to 50 per-cent.CMS also finalized two new core objectives from the proposal for physicians to use secure electronic messaging to com-municate relevant health information with patients, and for hospitals to automatically track medications from order toadministration using assistive technologies with an electronic medication administration record.To learn more:Read the final rule - http://www.ofr.gov/OFRUpload/OFRData/2012-21050_PI.pdfRead the ONC Fact Sheet http://www.healthit.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/ONC_FS_EHR_Stage_2_Final_082312.pdfRead Stage 1 vs. Stage 2 Comparison Table for Eligible Professionals - http://www.cms.gov/Regulations-and-Guidance/Legislation/EHRIncentivePrograms/Downloads/Stage1vsStage2CompTablesforEP.pdf Get Your Zombie Apocalypse Preparedness Kit Now!!!!! http://www.cdc.gov/phpr/zombies.htm -Chris Phillips, Project Manager
  4. 4. CT Physicians’ Services Page 4Data Warehousing and Analytics for Physician PracticesChristopher Phillips, Project ManagerTo lower healthcare costs and improve clinical outcomes, decision makers need to possess accurate, timely and comprehensiveinformation about their practice and patient populations. To do this, today’s practices will need to use data captured from clini-cal systems and make the investment of starting an Analytics Program with an optimized data warehouse solution.Analytics allow physicians insight into cost drivers with the ability to measure and even improve clinical outcomes. With ana-lytics, business managers can identify and empirically examine exorbitant spending. Clinical staff can stratify patients by demo-graphics, diagnoses and co-morbid conditions into homogenous cohorts to study care patterns and variances in outcomes. Theseresults can be used prospectively for the evaluation of care options which leads to less medical error and more favorable clinicaland financial outcomes. For these analytics to be statistically measured in a valid manner requires a reliable data warehouse thatcaptures many sources of information to promote the most accurate and complete fact-based reporting available.Today, CPS captures data from Practice Management Systems, Electronic Health Records and from many third-party applica-tions. In the near future, we plan to integrate Health Information Exchange feeds and patient survey data as well. Normativebenchmark data and even retail consumerism transactions may be available; all these sources combine to reveal comprehensivetrends in populations and traits of individual patients creating a powerful data set to conduct analysis.Practices may capitalize upon these sources of information through data warehousing. At CPS, we integrate these disparate datasources into a robust framework, which offers the granularity required to service multiple reporting purposes with the efficiencyto promote timely reporting. Our framework model is flexible enough to allow for future integration of new data sources andpossess an infrastructure that is scalable. Analysts can then access the data warehouse using readily available third party report-ing applications that allow for ad hoc queries and the capability to script canned reports to run on predetermined schedules.Data warehousing and analytics do not come without challenges; challenges that practices can mitigate through documentedbest practices. Acquiring multiple feeds across heterogeneous systems requires significant collaboration, working through legalconsiderations of data ownership, security of access, and proactively developing mechanisms to ensure high quality. Let’s notforget about the maintenance required for databases, user interfaces and corrective action for data quality issues. All of theseitems must be managed as part of a comprehensive Analytics Program. End users must adhere to strict principles of analytics toensure accurate data is being entered into the system, which translates into less errors when reporting. Clinical conditions andother metrics need to be operationally defined and routinely updated as industry guidelines evolve. The use of statistical method-ologies also ensures reporting is validand reliable.Implementing a robust data warehousesolution and employing analytics in aphysicians practice setting may posechallenges yet the outcomes do comewith rewards. Decision makers becomearmed with the information required toimprove clinical outcomes and drivestrategic business objectives. Throughuse of analytics, physicians now haveoptimal information in order to makethe best decisions in an ever changingHealthcare environment.
  5. 5. CT Physicians’ Services Page 5 “Terror at the Support Center” Richard Charron, Customer Support Analyst Do not fear talking to the CPS help desk! As our customers use more diversified technologies, they can take comfort in knowing they are not alone in their endeavors. Because we support over eighty (80) applications with a very diverse client base, the CPS Support Center would like to offer as much assistance as efficiently as possible. To do so, the Support Center will ask essential questions to troubleshoot and route the ticket. Our goal is to offer our clients one phone number/e-mail address/fax contact for information technology support; to be successful at doing so, it is of the utmost importance that an effective exchange of information is com-pleted upon that initial contact. The more data we capture through that critical first communication, themore accelerated the process will be to resolve the issue.To our horror, we have been contacted from frustrated parties offering little detail, even the identity of thecaller. Although we understand the last thing anyone calling in crisis wants to hear a slew of questions,they are imperative to the troubleshooting process. The following YouTube clip has actually happened tosupport desks everywhere, including at CPS: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-W5XXnEXuWM.To effectively tend to the caller’s matter, the Support Center needs:1. The customer’s full name, geographic location (including suite number, if applicable), and organization2. A phone number that will actually be answered by someone; if calling before or after work hours (orduring lunch for those offices that do so entirely), please do not give a number that goes to an answeringservice3. When possible, have the person experiencing the condition call or be available directly to assist us4. Know what application (Allscripts, Microsoft Office, e–mail, etc.) or activity is being problematic, howlong the condition has existed, and whether anyone else is experiencing the same situation5. If any error messages are encountered, please make a note of the exact verbiage — these are very helpfultroubleshooting specific conditions. If screenshots are available depicting the situation, they can be e-mailed to us or given to the technician when he or she arrivesPlease do not be offended if the Support Center asks “routine” questions or for a few rudimentary trouble-shooting actions. Questions concentrating on commonly overlooked issues (e.g., “is the power strip on?”)can save customers and field technicians precious hours and restore functionality very quickly. Many is-sues can be resolved by the agent answering the call or another CPS staff member in our office via remoteassistance.CPS knows everyone is very busy – Providers, MAs, Managers, PSRs, Surgical Schedulers. The CustomerSupport Team’s goal is to keep everyone working quickly and efficiently, but it cannot be accomplishedwithout your help.
  6. 6. CT Physicians’ Services Page 6 Avoiding the Backup Apocalypse Chris Van Scoy, Server EngineerHave you checked on your backups lately? This is a greatquestion that home users often neglect. Many users today havethe ability to back up their home systems in a variety of waysbut often do not. If users back up their systems they oftendon’t check to verify the backups are working properly. If youare reading this now and thinking “wow, I haven’t backed upmy system in a while” or “I haven’t ever checked to see if mybackups are good,” you should be afraid. Much like the guywho is unprepared for the zombie apocalypse you are nowunprepared for a home computer disaster.Some things you can do to ensure your data is protected are use a backup service such as Carbonite or Mozy. Theseservices allow you to back your files up to the cloud for a monthly fee. This is a great solution because not only does itback up your data it also gives you offsite protection and the ability to access your data remotely. The second way toprotect your data is to use a backup program to mirror data to an external hard drive. This will give you structuredbackups on a drive other than your PC or Mac (using Time Machine) that you can use to restore your system if itshould fail. Some products you could use are Acronis (third-party) and Windows backup (built-in). The final way toback up your system is just copy your files to an external drive. This doesn’t give you the same capabilities as usingsoftware but it will at least save your data should your hard drive crash (and they all do at some point).Like any good preparation for a zombie apocalypse, plans must be tested and drilled; so should your backup strategies.No matter what service you use you should at least once every couple of months test and see if you can restore a file toa folder on your local computer. You also should check your backup jobs to make sure they are running correctly on aweekly basis. All of these steps will help protect your machine and prepare you for catastrophe. Windows XP is Dead Bill Hall, Customer Support Specialist Back in 2001 Microsoft released Windows XP. Normally software vendors will support their products for 10 years. Typically that’s 5 years of main- stream support and 5 years of extended support. In the case of Windows XP Microsoft actually provided 6½ years of mainstream support and will provide extended support until April of 2014. Microsoft ended sales of Win- dows XP in June 2008 and Windows 7 was released 3 years ago this month. Windows XP certainly had a good run and it is still on over 50% of the world’s PCs. But with Windows 8 on the horizon, and Windows 7 having achieved full market acceptance. XP is riding into the sunset just like a cow- boy at the end of an old Western. At CPS we have one more roadblock to get through before we can deploy Windows 7: Internet Explorer 8 (default web browser in Windows 7). Inorder for our clients to use IE 8 we need to wait for the next Allscripts upgrade which will also upgrade the IDX Framework fromversion 4 (incompatible with IE 8) to version 5 (supported). We are working with Allscripts and hope to have it on the schedulevery soon.
  7. 7. CT Physicians’ Services Page 7 Dress Up Those Photos without Paying for PhotoShop Lee Seidman, Manager, Technical Services and Customer Support Computer users are usually familiar with the commercially-available prod- ucts (after all, those companies have the funds to ensure advertising guaran- tees recognition). Some offerings even have become so popular that the brand has penetrated the American lexicon (e.g., Kleenex is a brand of tissue, not the tissue itself; Photoshop is an Adobe product commonly referenced with a neologistic predicate, like “someone photoshopped that picture!” instead of stating “someone digitally retouched that picture!”). However, there are a variety of open source (also known as “freeware”) options that Inside Story Headline present similar capabilities without compromising one’s budget (Photoshop retails for approximately $699, but has started offering subscriptions for as little as $19.99 per month to appeal to smaller wallets). With respect to digital photo retouching, a few top-notch software packages are Paint.net,GIMP (or GIMPShop for those who want the Photoshop interface), and for those who prefer cloud-based applications(meaning there is nothing to actually install locally), there is Pixlr Editor.Paint.net is a good starting place for those who have started dabbling in photo editing and retouching, but want to go beyondthe canned Microsoft Paint’s capabilities without getting overly complex. It can be downloaded from www.getpaint.net andoffers a considerable online community for support and tutorials. One of the best features of the application is that it is veryeasy to undo an action that produced undesired consequences without starting over again. Presently, Paint.net is available onlyfor the Windows platform, so any Mac OS X users will need to look elsewhere.For the Photoshop diehards (or those who are looking for more powerful graphic editing capabilities), the GNU Image Ma-nipulation Program (GIMP for short) is the closest thing to Photoshop a consumer can get. It is not biased towards the Mi-crosoft platform and works with Mac OS X and various types of Linux distributions as well. Some of the professional-levelenhancements offered with GIMP include fixing perspective distortion, adding the ability to add colors to black and whitephotos as a channel mix (for example, choosing to just add blue eyes to a black and white face), object warping, and extensivelayer and clone features. There is an expansive online manual and a multitude of tutorials available, but one may be betterserved just playing around within the application. GIMP can be downloaded from www.gimp.org; GIMPshop is available viawww.gimpshop.com.Pixlr Editor (pixlr.com/editor) offers features not available in the installable products, such as being able to open images di-rectly from web pages (you just have to provide the URL to the image), social networking sites like Facebook, online photolibraries (think Flickr), or one’s own computer. The site uses Adobe Flash to function and can have issues with very large im-age files, but considering it not only is completely free and re-quires no installation, it offers another tool requiring only anInternet connection (broadband highly recommended) whoseadvantages outweigh any detriments.Free tools historically compare rather unfavorably to the com-mercial offerings (Adobe Photoshop, Corel’s Paintshop Pro,etc.), but with the strong talent of developers committed to opensource projects, that is no longer the case. The freeware solu-tions have really become a primary focus, especially for thosehobbyists who are looking to explore and expand their talentswithout committing anything more than time to learn and play.
  8. 8. CT Physicians’ Services Page 8 A Fall Garden Tale Cindy Denno, Applications Specialist It’s that time of year when gardening is winding down until next spring. In my garden the lettuce, cucumbers and squash are no more. The tomatoes too are coming to an end, and over in the flower garden, the blooms of Coreopsis and Bee Balm have been replaced by Sedum and Chrysanthe- mums. Even as this is a bit disheartening, fall remains my favorite season. Just the thought of autumn conjures images of mums, pumpkins, apples, cider and bales of hay.Over the years I have had little problem growing Mums in my flower gardens. No special fussing has ever been required.I’ve simply planted as seedlings, fertilized, watered and beautiful Mums havesprouted. In our last home we had several apple trees (which I dearly miss)from which I garnered my own small supply of fresh apples! Pumpkins how-ever are another story. I have always gone by the logic “if it doesn’t grow, don’tfret or stress, simply move on to something that will”. Unfortunately I cannotseem to apply my own logic to growing pumpkins! For years I had images ofhaving my own small pumpkin patch. There is an aesthetically pleasing qualityin gazing on plump pumpkins nestled in their patch. Vision in mind, I went outand planted pumpkins – it was going to be awesome! Well, the vines grew likecrazy meandering way outside the confines of their garden and were abundantwith flowers. Even so that first patch produced only two small pumpkins. Notexactly the result I anticipated but I was not deterred and decreed the next yearwould be better! I read up on pumpkins, planting tips, growing techniques,fertilizers – you name it I read it! Then the next year came and in my smallpatch…..one lone pumpkin grew……which my son inadvertently ran over withthe lawn mower! This season, though sorely tempted, my ego was a bit bruisedso I took a break from my attempts at pumpkin nirvana! I opted instead to try a couple other vegetables I had not previ-ously tackled – happily the results were good! Moral to this story is that every gardener will inevitably experience their own share of setbacks and disappointments but don’t let one, or even several, failed attempts destroy your love of gardening! I may never grow that perfect patch of pumpkins but then again…..there’s always next year! “Eye of newt, and toe of frog, Wool of bat, and tongue of dog, Adders fork, and blind-worms sting, Lizards leg, and howlets wing,-- For a charm of powerful trouble, Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.” -Macbeth IV 14-15
  9. 9. CT Physicians’ Services Page 9 Cheap Thrill-ers! Gabraelle Washburn, Procurement Specialist Wanting to dress up for Halloween, but experiencing a tighter budget this year? FEAR not! Being frivolous with creativity does not have to mean break- ing the bank. Using the internet is a quick and easy way to get the creative juices flow- ing. Simply type “Halloween Costume” into any search engine, and costumes from adult to children to pet will cover the screen like a SEVERED ARTERY covers the floor with BLOOD. The majority of these websites sell premade costumes, and are a great way to see the finish product which will aide in the decision making process. Other sites, such as Pinterest.com, can also be a fun and helpful tool in getting ideas of what to be, and how to do. Once the character for the costume has been picked, now comes the real stress. To buy a premade costume or to make one? Insert blood curdling SCREAM here! Unless, it is a last minute purchase, buying a good, premade costume can get a bit pricy. Not to mention the risk of running into someone else with the same exact costume. Oh, the HORROR that would be! Livin- gonadime.com posted an article listing twenty tips for making Halloween cos- tumes for the kids using items from around the house. The moral of the story is recycle old clothes, accessories, car parts, and cardboard boxes, and with alittle glue and stitching here, and a little paint and marker there, POOF, Little Red Riding Hood is now the reflection in theCRACKED mirror at nearly no cost.Going for something with slightly more GORE than Little Red Riding Hood? How about aDEAD bride? Still easy and inexpensive. Take a trip to the local Salvation Army store to find aused gown and veil. Stores like Michael’s Arts & Crafts and Joann Fabrics are great places to pur-chase flowers and red spray paint, and these stores always have sales and coupons available yeararound. Want to take it a step further? Spirit Halloween stores open in almost every town thistime of year, or check them out online and sign up for sale notifications via e-mail. Use these elec-tronic discounts to purchase the grossest SCAR and fake BLOOD the store has to offer.This DEAD bride is surely a contest winner, and she did not have to ROB A GRAVE. MUHA-HAHAHAHAHA! Have a happy, safe, and bloody Halloween! Scary Fact Gabraelle Washburn Diagnosis: TechnophobiaSymptoms: Fear or dislike of advanced technology or complex devices, especially computers First Known Case/Use: 1965 (According to www.merriam-webster.com) Cure: Unknown (insert sinister laugh here…muh-hahahaha)
  10. 10. CT Physicians’ Services Page 10The CPS Team’s Favorite Horror Movies! House on Haunted Hill (1999) - Mari The Fall of the House of Usher (1960) - Bob Jaws (1975) - Gabraelle The Mist (2007) - Nate Dawn of the Dead (1978) - Chris P. Shawn of the Dead (2006) - Chris V. Any Lifetime movie based on a true story where it always ends badly for the husband.—Lee The Exorcist (1973) Sinister (2012) - Kam When iPads Attack (2012) - Moiz The Shining (1980) - Joel Black Sheep (2006) - CPS Ghost The Sixth Sense (1999) - Cindy The Blair Witch Project (1999) - Mike Puppetmaster (1985) - Bryan Interview with a Vampire (1994) The movie theater prices scare me - Dick away.—Bill Manhunter (1986) - Wayne Attack of the Killer Tomatoes (1973) - Alyssa
  11. 11. CT Physicians’ Services Page 11 What CPS Does on the Weekend Mari Bogli, Executive and Technology Assistant Connecticut Physicians’ Services and members from Connecticut Multispecialty Group and Hart- ford Specialists participated in the 12th Annual Riverfront Dragon Boat and Asian Festival on Sat- urday August 18, 2012. The festival featured Asian music, dance, cultural activities, food, beverages and the Dragon Boat races at Hartford’s Mortensen Riverfront Plaza. Sixty-nine teams brought more than 1,800 paddlers to race on the Con- necticut River. A dragon boat team consists of 20 paddlers, a drummer who sets cadence for the team, and a steersperson. The CPS team proudly took fourth place in the Community Team Category after win- ning one of our races and doing quite well in the other two heats. Dragon boating is a 2,000 year-old Chinese tradition that is growing in popularity throughout America and other parts of the world. The Riverfront Dragon Races were sanctioned by the East- ern Regional Dragon Boat Association, giving teams with the highest points in their divisions the opportunity to repre- sent the USA’s Eastern Region at the regional championships. Way to go Techno Dragons!
  12. 12. CT Physicians’ Services Page 12 CPS Employee News! Congratulations to Nathan and Catherine Sebastiao! Married on June 9, 2012CPS welcomes Chris Phillips as our newProject Manager. Chris has over 15 years experi-ence in the healthcare industry with a diversebackground in healthcare. His previous experi-ences include IS Business Consulting, ProjectManagement, Account Management and Sales En-gineering. He has extensive experience on thehealthcare informatics side with reporting andbuilding healthcare data warehouses. Over the last5 years, Chris served as a Healthcare Informaticsexpert at Cigna, where he implemented & oversawthe Cigna corporate reporting program HEDIS(Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set).Additional talents include Six Sigma, quality man-agement, process improvement and operations.Chris is also a U.S. Army Veteran, who served inOperation Desert Storm. During his personal time,he frequently participates in shooting competitionsand enjoys the company of his fiancé Nancy.
  13. 13. CT Physicians’ Services Page 13 Halloween Fun Facts Nathan Sebastiao, Network Engineer 1. Because the movie Halloween (1978) was on such a tight budget, they had to use the cheapest mask they could find for the character Michael Meyers, which turned out to be a William Shatner Star Trek mask. 2. The first Jack O’Lanterns were made from turnips 3. Halloween is the second highest grossing commercial holiday after Christmas. 4. The word “witch” comes from the Old English word wicce, meaning “wise woman”. 5. Samhainophobia is the fear of Halloween 6. The owl is a popular Halloween image. In Medieval Europe owls were thought to be witches, and to hear an owls call meant someone was about to die. 7. If a person wears his clothes inside out and walks backwards on Halloween, they will see a witch at midnight. 8. Dressing up as ghouls and other spooks originated from ancient Celtic tradition where townspeople would disguise themselves as demons and spirits to escape the view of the REAL spirits wandering the streets during Samhain. 9. Halloween is thought to have originated around 4,000 BCE, which means it has been around for over 6,000 years. 10. Halloween celebrations in Hong Kong are known as Yue Lan or the “Festival of the Hungry Ghosts”, during which fires are lit and food or gifts are offered to placate ghosts seeking revenge. AUTUMN WORD SEARCH Jhomar Fernandez, Intern Autumn Leaves Branches Forest Breeze Maple Chili Maze Cinnamon Oak Corn Orange Crunching Red Fall Raking Path September Smoke Woods Yellow Fire Apple
  14. 14. CT Physicians’ Services Page 14Witches Fingers The Ghost of CPSIngredients:1 cup sugar1 cup butter, softened1 egg1 tsp almond extract1 tsp vanilla extract1 2/3 cup flour1 tsp salt3/4 cup whole raw almondsDirections:Combine sugar, egg, butter, almond extract and vanilla in bowl. Mix inflour and salt. Cover and refrigerate dough for 30 minutes or until firm.Tips: to shape cookies, only use a small portion of the dough at a time,keep rest chilled. Score the top of the cookie with a knife to look like knuckles. Press an imprint into the top of thecookie and press in an almond to form the finger nail.Place on a cookie sheet lightly coated with no-stick cooking spray and bake at 325 degrees for 20-25 minutes, or until thecookies are a very light golden brown. Let cool completely and serve to your most picky zombies.Vampire Kiss Martini Cindy Denno Lost Soul Sippers Cindy Denno Ingredients: Pulp Free Orange Juice Black Vodka Sharpen Pitted Cheries Cream Cheese or Frosting your Directions fangs! Fill a glass halfway with orange juice. Pour black vodka over the back of a spoon so it gently runs down the inside rim of the glass instead of plunging into the juice and mixing right away. For the eyes use pitted cherries stuffed with cream cheese or frosting (red cherries make extra creepy ghouls!) Cut up one cherry and use the pieces Ingredients: as pupils (or you can use sprinkles for 1 part raspberry liqueur, such as Chambord varied colors). Pierce the completed 1 part vodka, such as Absolut eyes with a toothpick and place on 1 part Champagne, such as Korbel the rim of the glass. wax teeth, candy corn, licorice, and/or blood orange slice, for garnish Directions: I’m watching you! 1. Layer raspberry liqueur, vodka, and Champagne in a fluted or martini glass. BOO!!! 2. Garnish with wax teeth, candy corn, lico- rice, and/or blood orange slice.
  15. 15. CT Physicians’ Services Page 15 Candy Corn Cupcakes Mari Bogli For all you candy corn haters out there this recipe embraces the look of candy but uses a regular white/yellow cake recipe! Ingredients: 1 package white/yellow cake mix 1 cup water 1/3 cup vegetable oil 3 eggs red food coloring yellow food coloring 2 cups prepared white frosting candy corn, sprinkles Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake cups with paper liners. 2. Make cake mix following directions on box and split batter in half 3. Color half yellow with yellow food coloring 4. Color half orange combining yellow and red food coloring 5. Bake according to directions on box 6. After cool top with frosting, sprinkles and candy corn! Candy Corn Chocolate Bark Mari Bogli Ingredients: CPS 2 cups dark/semi/or milk chocolate chips WARNING! Recipe Corner 1 cup white chocolate chips 1 cup candy corn VERY SWEET vegetable shortening AND HIGHLY ADDICTIVE! Directions: 1. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil 2. In separate containers, melt the chocolate in the microwave on high, in 5 second bursts with 1 tsp of vegetable shortening each for 1 minute, whip to remove lumps. 3. Stir 1/2 cup candy corn into dark melted chocolate and pour into pan, use a spatula to spread evenly, does not have to cover entire pan 4. Spoon small amounts of the white chocolate over the dark chocolate layer, use a toothpick or knife to swirl the 2 chocolates together 5. Sprinkle the remaining candy corn on the mixture and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes to harden, break and enjoy! Editors: Bryan Graven, Lee Seidman, Alyssa Lynch Newsletter Design and Layout: Mari Bogli www.mariskarp.com