As we roll into 2014, this is a good time to take a look back and tell you why we feel very good about how well MPTF served the industry and fulfilled our goal of “taking care of our own” in 2013. We are very proud of the level of community engagement and support we received in meeting the many challenges we faced in 2013, which itself is one of our measures of success, and I will detail some more of that in this blog.
In May, we convened a Healthcare Summit, with first-rate subject matter experts from around the US discussing issues like patient centered care, value over volume, and the new financial landscape of healthcare. Among those in attendance (we had over 150 in the audience for the one-day event) were many members of the boards of the industry’s pension and health plans. As indicated by participant surveys, the event was a big success and we plan for another one in 2014 –more focused this time on engaging our industry members in their personal healthcare and wellness.
One of the principal “learnings” MPTF took away from the 2013 Healthcare Summit was that it will become increasingly difficult for relatively small, unaffiliated (with a major hospital) primary care practices like MPTF’s to survive in an increasingly complex and administratively dense healthcare world. We saw it coming ourselves, but the Summit only validated our thinking. So by the time October rolled around, we were ready to announce a combination of MPTF’s health care system with UCLA Health System that will bring exciting benefits to all of our stakeholders: the patient-doctor relationship will be preserved as our doctors will stay with us and become part of the UCLA Faculty Practice Group; our non-physician clinic workers will continue in their roles; health centers will remain exclusive to industry members; the MPTF name will remain a primary brand; and our industry members will have unprecedented access to a UCLA health system that US News and World Report calls “Best in the West.” By mid 2014, we will have fully completed our integration with UCLA and will be ready for its launch. MPTF remains absolutely committed to engaging our industry’s members in keeping themselves healthy – now with the support of a powerful and sophisticated healthcare leader in our camp.
This role of “convener” of industry members around key topics impacting their lives continued in October when we held our first Women’s Conference, with 150 industry members meeting up for a day to engage with some amazing keynote speakers, network, and join in panels with experts on subject matters ranging from caregiving for parents, second careers and reinvention, trusts and estates, philanthropy, health and wellness issues, and so on. Our participants spoke to us afterwards: Another incredible success! We will be launching an MPTF-sponsored blog in the next month or two to keep this powerful dialogue going and are planning for a second Women’s Conference in the fall of 2014. Stay tuned!
We entered 2013 without a collective bargaining agreement with our SEIU-UHW workers – nurses, dietary staff, environmental services, administrative support. In March, things got heated and there was the threat of a strike. Cooler heads prevailed, negotiations continued through the end of the year, and before 2013 was out the door, over 80% of the bargaining unit ratified a new 3-year deal that fits the economic contours of our organization and our workers. There’s something to be said for labor peace.
Our campus volunteers logged over 35,000 hours in 2013 (I know, extraordinary!) and our community volunteers, an ever-expanding program, contributed another 2,600 hours as Phone Buddies, Shopping Buddies, Pool and Exercise Buddies, Home Safety workers, Palliative Care support, Community Council members, drivers, and Computer Tutors. This frontal attack by the volunteers on reducing social isolation and increasing social engagement for our industry seniors is absolutely wonderful. And when you hear some of the stories of how in many cases they are the sole individual involved in the lives of some of our industry members, it will bring tears to your eyes.
In October, our Channel 22 “creativity-doesn’t-end-when-you’re- 65” media program was recognized by the Eisner Foundation with the Eisner Prize for Multi-Generational Excellence for bringing together multiple generations, especially industry seniors with high school and college age students, in support of the media production activities on our campus in Woodland Hills. On any given day, we have a trailer full of high school and college-age students working with industry retirees living on and off campus to create interesting new content. We were thrilled to be recognized at the top of a handful of truly impressive nationwide organizations bringing about positive and lasting changes in their community. With the Eisner Prize came a grant of $150,000 that will go toward expanding the activities of the MPTF Media Center on campus and in the community.
By the end of 2013, we crossed the threshold of $300 million toward our MPTF Campaign goal of $350 million. Through a combination of legacy gifts that will sustain MPTF for the next 90 years and current gifts that will enable us to sustain and in some cases grow our programs and develop new services to address the causes we are committed to supporting, we feel very proud to be the recipient of such incredible generosity from our entertainment industry community. And we feel equally humbled in the knowledge that we have so much to achieve each and every day as stewards of an organization that was started 92 years ago by industry visionaries who understood that taking care of our own is the most important contribution any of us can make to show business.
There is more, and over the course of 2014 I will get to it. In closing, I of course want to thank all of you who read and sometimes comment on this blog for your support, and most important, all of the MPTF team, our full staff of over 700 associates, who drive this organization to new levels of excellence and achievement every year. They are the heart-and-soul of MPTF, they are the individuals whose praise is sung in letter after letter that I receive from grateful industry members, they are the individuals taking care of our industry’s most frail and vulnerable seniors at 3 a.m. on a holiday weekend or sitting by the side of the bed and bringing comfort to an industry family as one of our own expires. Bless them all for their incredible labors of love.