President’s Update for March 21, 2014

In this edition...

After Hours Nurse Triage Line Phase II

Phase II of our After Hours Nurse Triage Line will go live in Haines, Klukwan, and Pelican on April 1st.  This is a free resource that allows SEARHC patients to obtain healthcare information and triaging services when the local clinic is not open.

The service is available exclusively to patients of SEARHC and began in Kake, Angoon, Hoonah, and Prince of Wales Island at the end of February, and will come on line in Juneau at the end of April; making reliable health information provided by Registered Nurses just a phone call away and can be accessed easily by calling a toll-free number, (800) 613-0560. While this service is not a substitute for one’s relationship with a regular provider, it is an excellent supplement to that relationship.

For more information you are encouraged to visit www.searhc.org/nurse-line or contact SEARHC’s Health Systems Specialist, Angela Shipley, (907) 785-6536.


Paddle Workshop in Wrangell

On March 15th and 16th, the Wrangell community took its first steps in the process of preparation for the upcoming Paddle to Celebration. Thirty volunteers came together in the Wrangell High School wood shop room to produce 21 red cedar canoe paddles, and as part of the activity, partake in Gatekeeper QPR suicide prevention training.

These paddles will physically transport the Wrangell team to Juneau this June, and will also power the team financially, as each one will be sponsored by community members and organizations. The woodworking effort was effective and efficient producing the paddles ahead of the two-day deadline.

This workshop was also emblematic of the best of inter-organizational cooperation and collaboration. The activity was carried out by SEARHC Traditional Foods Program, SEARHC Suicide Prevention, The One People Canoe Society, Shtax' Heen Khwaan Canoe Family, and Wrangell High School.


Student Health Fair at Mt. Edgecumbe High School

On Saturday, March 15th, the SEARHC/Mt. Edgecumbe High School Student Health Center held a student health fair during Mt. Edgecumbe High School's Saturday School.  Approximately 325 students participated in this event where they learned about nutrition, diabetes, tobacco cessation, immersion suits, bone health, health careers, reproductive health, stress management, bullying, and received fluoride treatments.  SEARHC was well represented with booths from the Health Promotion/ Tobacco, Diabetes, Dental, Pharmacy, and Raven's Way programs. There were also representatives from AMSEA, Planned Parenthood, UAS, UAA's School of Nursing, Sitka Community Hospital, Sitka Youth Leadership Committee and the Mt. Edgecumbe High School counselors.  This is an annual event designed to offer up-to-date health information on topics that are especially relevant to teens, and to expose students to a variety of health careers.

Charles Clement

Just a reminder...


March is National Nutrition Month

Every March, we at SEARHC celebrate National Nutrition Month. The national theme this year is “Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right.” For ideas on how to make your meals tastier and more interesting, we suggest you: 1) check out the displays at ELMC and the Dental Building; 2) visit the “Eat Well” section SEARHC’s online magazine, Healthy Living Southeast for more great ideas; and 3) contact one of SEARHC’s four dietitians. In Juneau, you can contact Susan Hennon at 364-4476 or Aleene Poulsen at 463-4097.  In Sitka, you can contact Kelly Whitcomb at 966-8427 or Jessica Holland at 966-8651. Remember, healthy eating can and should be delicious, too!


Annual Food Drive

SEARHC employees in Juneau are invited to participate in our annual food drive. All proceeds will be donated to the Southeast Alaska Food Bank at the end of the month.  Donation boxes are located in the break rooms on both floors of ELMC, the break room in the Administration Building, and in the lobby of the Dental/WIC/Health Promotion & Behavioral Health Building. Thank you in advance for your generous donations.


ANTHC $5000 Scholarship for the 2014-2015 academic year

Applications are currently being accepted now through June 20, 2014 at 4:30 pm. Awards go towards the academic Fall 2014 – Summer 2015 school year. ANTHC grants these scholarships as an integral part of its long-term strategy to increase Alaska Natives and American Indians in the healthcare field. You may visit the ANTHC website for more information.


March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

Of cancers that affect both men and women; colorectal (colon) cancer is the #2 cause of cancer deaths in the United States. About 51,000 people die from colorectal cancer each year. Screening could have prevented 60% of these deaths. Please talk to your provider about scheduling an appointment to be screened and feel free to contact our dedicated Patient Navigator with the SEARHC Colorectal Cancer Screening Program, Maria at 907-966-8541 or 907-966-2411 ext 8541 to help you through the process.


Pharmacy at Ethel Lund Medical Center opens on weekends

Beginning Saturday, March 1, the pharmacy at the SEARHC Ethel Lund Medical Center in Juneau expanded its hours to include weekends. The ELMC pharmacy hours now mirror the hours the clinic operates and is open from 9:00am – 5:00pm on Saturdays and 12:00pm – 4:00pm on Sundays.


Shingles vaccine available until April 24, 2014

The State of Alaska has provided a one-time allocation of shingles vaccine (Zostavax) to Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital in Sitka and Ethel Lund Medical Center in Juneau. There are several things you should know about the vaccine which we have made available at Healthy Living Southeast, our online lifestyle magazine so please take a look at the information at your earliest convenience.

To get the vaccine you may request a nurse appointment in the MEH Outpatient Department in Sitka at 966-8318 or ELMC in Juneau at 463-6608. If you live in one of the villages and would like shingles vaccine, please contact your local clinic.