President’s Update for July 24, 2010

In this edition...

Ethel Lund Medical Center becomes first U.S. health facility to launch ALERT® Clinic: We took a major step forward in our systems transformation project on July 14 when the SEARHC Ethel Lund Medical Center (ELMC) became the first health facility in the country to go live with the ALERT® Clinic electronic health record. This software program operates in seven other countries in Europe, Asia and South America, where it is known as ALERT® Private Practice. ALERT® Clinic has many upgrades over ALERT® Private Practice made in conjunction with SEARHC staff. The launch will take about five weeks to complete as our staff becomes more familiar with the features, such as imaging and lab order entry. ELMC is our first facility to make a full upgrade to an electronic health record for all patient encounters, and once this launch is complete we will start rolling ALERT® out to our other facilities one or two at a time. We hope to have ALERT® live at all of our facilities by October 2011. Joint Commission postpones survey to consider systemwide accreditation: On July 14, a survey crew from The Joint Commission arrived at the Ethel Lund Medical Center (ELMC) for its unannounced accreditation survey done every three years. The surveyors postponed the survey recognizing for the first time in the more than two decades that ELMC is part of SEARHC, an organization that includes a hospital and many clinics across the region, and is not a single entity. The Joint Commission extended our current accreditation while it determines if a systemwide accreditation is required. SEARHC currently has three major accreditation organizations review our facilities and programs — The Joint Commission for ELMC and S’áxt’ Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital, AAAHC (Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care) for some of our smaller clinics and CARF (Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) for some of our behavioral health and substance abuse treatment programs. In recent years, we reviewed finding a single accreditation agency for all of SEARHC’s facilities and programs as one complete system. This decision may be resolved if The Joint Commission requires a system accreditation. We will keep you updated on the review. New radiologist joins hospital medical staff: Dr. Paul Peters joined the medical staff at S’áxt’ Hít Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital as a radiologist. Dr. Peters comes to Sitka from Casper, Wyoming. In addition to his 23 years as a radiologist with Casper Medical Imaging/Wyoming Medical Center, Dr. Peters spent three years as a U.S. Air Force radiologist at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois. The American Board of Radiology certifies him and he earned a medical degree from the University of Nebraska in Omaha. Jeff Chelmo, PA-C, joins medical staff at Trudy Wolfe Medical Center in Hoonah: The Trudy Wolfe Medical Center in Hoonah recently hired Jeffery Chelmo as a physician assistant. Jeff comes to SEARHC after 11 years as a physician assistant in Montana and 2.5 years as an emergency room and coronary ICU nurse in South Dakota. Before that, Jeff spent 10 years in South Dakota as a dentist, but after a hand injury was retrained as a nurse and physician assistant. Jeff has a special interest in rural health care, and he and his wife, Jenni, have been trauma medical director and trauma medical coordinator for a small rural hospital in Montana. Jeff completed his physician assistant studies at the University of South Dakota, earned a B.S. in nursing from Creighton University and his DDS from the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Dentistry. Sitka Farmers Market opens third season on July 17: The Sitka Local Foods Network hosted its first Sitka Farmers Market of the summer on Saturday, July 17, at Sitka’s ANB Hall. The SEARHC Health Promotion and Diabetes programs are among the groups that help sponsor the Sitka Local Foods Network, which started the farmers market after the 2008 Sitka Health Summit as a way to help Sitka residents gain access to healthy local food. The Sitka Farmers Market has four more dates this season — from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 31, Aug. 14, Aug. 28 and Sept. 11. The markets feature fresh locally grown produce, locally harvested fish, home baked goods, locally made arts and crafts, and music. For more information about the Sitka Local Foods Network and Sitka Farmers Market, go to http://www.sitkalocalfoodsnetwork.org/. SEARHC Injury Prevention Team hosts July 19-20 conference in Sitka: The SEARHC Injury Prevention Team hosted a day-and-a-half-long conference Monday and Tuesday called “Preventing Injuries in Your Community: A Planned Approach.” The conference had 16 participants from five communities (Angoon, Kake, Petersburg, Wrangell and Sitka) who learned a mix of theory and hands-on training to help them reduce the rate and severity of injuries in their communities. Some of the topics of the conference included how to prevent injuries from falls, dog bites, motor vehicle crashes, drowning, bike wrecks, domestic violence, suicide and other issues. Three Alicia Roberts Medical Center staff pass their EMT 3 exam: Congratulations to George Nickerson, Laura Wilson and Minnie Ellison, who recently passed their emergency medical technician (EMT) 3 exams and now are certified at this higher level. Hydaburg’s Anna Frisby starts training as physician assistant: In preparation for her training as a physician assistant, longtime Hydaburg community health practitioner (CHP) Anna Frisby in July started a six-week anatomy and physiology class at the University of Washington’s MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies program. Following the class, which is given in Seattle, she will return to Hydaburg until her PA training starts this fall at the Anchorage satellite campus of the UW program. Anna received the 2009 “Health Aide of the Year” award from the directors of the Alaska Community Health Aide Program, and she has been a community health aide/practitioner for 15 1/2 years at the SEARHC Hydaburg Health Center. New Alaska Native hold music for people calling SEARHC: This week, we replaced our call-waiting music with music from Dog Point Fish Camp and Roby Littlefield. This new hold music went live in Juneau on Wednesday and it was supposed to be live for Sitka and our other communities on Thursday or Friday. The hold music features Tlingít lullabies and storytelling from various clans. ‘Then and now: Traditional and modern foods and activities’ offered in Hydaburg: The Alicia Roberts Medical Center's diabetes program will team up with the tobacco cessation program to provide a modified “Then and now: Traditional and modern foods and activities” presentation at the Hydaburg Culture Camp. Julie Sturtevant, diabetes case manager, “is excited to offer this lesson from the diabetes education in tribal school curriculum.” The Hydaburg Culture Camp is scheduled for July 26-28. SEARHC Health Promotion offers free health screenings in Sitka and Haines: The SEARHC Health Promotion program will offer free health screenings for adults (ages 18 or older) on July 29-31 in Sitka and on Sept. 1-2 in Haines. The first two days (July 29-30) of the screenings in Sitka take place from 8 a.m. to 4:40 p.m. at the Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital Litehouse Cafeteria conference rooms, with the third day (July 31) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Sitka Fire hall as part of the Sitka Volunteer Fire Department’s Super Saturday. The health screenings in Haines are from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2:30-6 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday (Sept. 1-2) at the Chilkat Center for the Arts, located on the grounds for Fort William H. Seward. Participants are encouraged to call early to schedule 20-minute appointment, though walk-in patients will be seen when there are gaps in the schedule. The screenings feature a simple blood test that gives people their non-fasting glucose, total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) and blood pressure results. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Renae Mathson in Sitka at 966-8797 or Mandy Ramsey in Haines at 766-6317. SEARHC Materiel Management adopts inventory system: In an effort to save money, resources and manpower, SEARHC Materiel Management has adopted the Lawson Mobile Supply Chain Management (MSCM) inventory control system. This system uses handheld devices and bar codes to simplify ordering and inventory control, and that will provide SEARHC with a tremendous amount of savings in supplies and manpower. Many health organizations have issues keeping critical supplies in stock without running out of certain key items or ordering too many of other items. This system will allow Materiel Management to better control inventory. Regards, Roald