Author: Virginia Gay Hospital

Party in Pink 5k: Don’t miss out on the fun!

  Have you registered for the 5th Annual Party in Pink? The event takes place Friday, June 23 at Riverside Park. The evening begins at 5:30 p.m. with a Kids Fun Run, followed by the 5K and 1 mile walk/run at 6:00 p.m. Entertainment, food and fireworks complete the evening activities. Registration is available online only this year at bit.ly/partyinpink2017.  To receive a t-shirt, registration must be made on or before June 11, although registration is open until race time. Proceeds from Party in Pink goes to Gifts of Hope at VGH. Gifts of Hope is a fund created to provide free mammograms and diagnostic services to those who need financial assistance. It will pay for a clinic visit, testing, and diagnostic testing to determine next steps and future treatments. Funds are meant for those who have no insurance, have health insurance with high deductibles or those policies that don’t cover these services. No application is necessary.  Simply talk to your health care...

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Stressed Brains Can’t Learn: “Paper Tigers” documentary on trauma-informed education to screen at Vinton-Shellsburg High School

Several area organizations have teamed together to host a screening of Paper Tigers, a film that captures the pain, danger, beauty and hopes of struggling teens — and the teachers armed with new science and fresh approaches that are changing lives for the better. The public is invited to a free screening of this documentary film at 5:30 pm on Thursday, May 4 at Vinton-Shellsburg High School Auditorium (210 W 21st St, Vinton). Paper Tigers follows a year in the life of an alternative high school in Walla Walla, WA, that has radically changed its approach to disciplining its students, and in the process has become a promising model for how to break the cycles of poverty, violence and disease that affect families. Paper Tigers is an unrated documentary that deals with Adverse Childhood Experiences. There is the use of profanity during some scenes and the overall content can be difficult to watch for some individuals. This screening is brought to the community courtesy of 1st Five, Benton Iowa Decat, Above the Influence, Families, Inc., Benton County Public Health, HACAP, Better Tomorrows, Mental Health/Disability Services of the East Central Region, Vinton-Shellsburg Community School District and Virginia Gay Hospital, Clinics, Home Health, Nursing & Rehab. Funding for 1st Five and this screening of Paper Tigers provided through the Iowa Department of Public Health. For more information on Paper Tigers and...

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Bidding to begin soon for Third Annual Purse-A-Palooza

Find everything from purses to beach bags stuffed with all kinds of surprises at the third annual Vinton Family Medical Clinic’s Purse-A-Palooza! Bidding in this silent auction starts 7 a.m. on Monday, April 24th and continues through 5 p.m. Friday, May 5th. All items have been generously donated by the clinic staff with proceeds going to support improved equipment, special programs, and facilities through the Virginia Gay Hospital Health Care Foundation’s annual campaign. To learn more about the Virginia Gay Health Care Foundation visit...

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Easter Basket Fundraiser underway at Virginia Gay Hospital Business Office

The Virginia Gay Hospital Business Office is holding an Easter Basket fundraiser today, April 11 from 9 am till supplies last. They have done a tremendous job of creating a wide variety of Easter baskets filled with treats and gifts of all different sizes available for purchase with proceeds going towards the Virginia Gay Hospital Health Care Foundation’s Annual Campaign: Tree of Lights. Prices start at just $2 and vary depending on the size of the basket or gift. This is the perfect time to stop in, do a little Easter shopping and support a great organization. Members of the business office staff include: (front row starting on the left), Jenn Rake, Kelsey Reuter, Sue Hunt, Brie McKenna, (top row left to right), Tara Berry, Dee Halstead and Taylor Frank. For additional information about Virginia Gay Hospital, the Virginia Gay Hospital Health Care Foundation and the Tree of Lights Annual Campaign, visit...

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Why you should be “Brown Bagging It” to all of your clinic appointments?

Let’s start with the meaning of “brown bagging it.” It’s the practice of gathering up all of your medicines including any supplements and over-the-counter products you take on a regular basis, placing them in a brown bag and taking them with you for review by your healthcare provider at your appointment. It’s important for you to bring: All prescription medicines All over-the-counter medicines All vitamins, supplements, and herbal medicines All topicals, liquids, injectibles, and inhalants, as well as pills Why? Because your health might just depend on it. If your healthcare provider prescribes medication but is unaware of other drugs or products you’re taking, there is a risk of those medicines interacting in a way that is harmful to your health. And just writing them down in list form isn’t enough. There are so many medications with similar names that they are easy to get confused. Even a small mistake on your dosage could have serious consequences. The “brown bagging it” practice also allows you a chance to review not only what you take for medicine, but also how you take it to make sure that you are taking it as directed. For additional information about Virginia Gay Hospital and its primary health care clinics located in Atkins, Urbana, Van Horne and Vinton, visit...

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Free Kites for Kids at the Health & Wellness Fair

April is National Child Abuse Awareness Month, a time to recognize the role each of us plays in the lives of children and youth and to raise awareness about child abuse by engaging the community in developing ways to help prevent the abuse and neglect of children. As part of the Benton County Community Health & Wellness Fair event on Saturday, April 1, Benton County Decat/Flourishing Families CPPC and Better Tomorrows will be providing a Kites for Kids event to kick off National Child Abuse Prevention Month. The groups strive to provide opportunities for positive parent-child interactions in a community-based environment and raise awareness about local resources that can help struggling parents Children attending the event will receive free kites to fly to symbolize hope, a happy childhood and a chance to soar, things that many local children do not experience. According to recent statistics, 8,295 Iowa children were abused in 2014, which is 22 to 23 per day. Prevent Child Abuse Iowa statistics show there were 48 reports of child abuse in Benton County. “This is the first year Benton County Decat/Flourishing Families CPPC and Better Tomorrows has hosted this event,” Heidi Schminke (Co-Director) said. “We are excited to offer it as part of the Health Fair and plan to offer other prevention activities during the month of April that will also support family engagement activities. In many...

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Health and Wellness Fair set for Saturday, April 1

Health is Cool! Don’t be Fooled! Virginia Gay Hospital is encouraging all Benton County residents to attend the Third Annual Benton County Community Health & Wellness Fair scheduled for Saturday, April 1 from 8 am to Noon. The event begins at the Vinton Skate & Activity Center, 1703 C Ave in Vinton with additional activities planned at the parking lot of the Vinton-Shellsburg Middle School. This is a free event open to all ages. Plans include over 30 displays covering a variety of health and wellness topics as well as activities for individuals and families. New this year will be the addition of activities like a human foosball tournament with teams of six (ages 10 and over) competing for bragging rights as Benton County’s First Human Foosball Champs and free kites for kids provided by Benton Iowa Decat & Better Tomorrows. Additional highlights include a limited supply of free weather radios and emergency backpacks for fair attendees generously supplied by the Vinton Fareway and the Disaster Recovery Coalition. Britley Ritz, from KCRG will be broadcasting the weather live from 8-9 am and the Vinton Police Department’s K-9 office, Gino will be on hand from 10-11 am. For complete event details, just visit the fair’s website at www.bentoncohealthfair.com Another important feature that morning will be the free health screenings. There will be healthy child screenings (development, hearing & dental), depression screenings...

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Virginia Gay Nursing and Rehab Receives 11 Customer Care Awards

Jessica Henkle, RN-BC, and director of Virginia Gay Hospital’s Nursing and Rehab unit, has announced that Virginia Gay Nursing and Rehab has received quality awards from an independent survey company in 11 categories of care. The award categories earned by the Virginia Gay staff this year include: Admission Process, Cleanliness, Communication from Facility, Individual Needs, Laundry Service, Nursing Care, Overall Customer Experience, Overall Satisfaction, Recommend to Others, Response to Problems, and Safety and Security. “There were 14 Iowa care facilities receiving awards from Pinnacle Surveys,” explains Jess, “and only one other facility received awards in 11 categories. The average number of awards received by a facility was four.” Pinnacle is an independent company conducting surveys of VGH Nursing and Rehab patients and their loved ones. The surveys are anonymous and are conducted over the phone by trained Pinnacle staff members. Pinnacle conducts over 150,000 phone surveys each year and works with more than 2,300 care providers in all 50 US states, Canada and Puerto Rico.   “Delivering high-quality customer experience in a skilled nursing facility is uniquely challenging,” says Jess. “Implementing new procedures, changes in staff members and scheduling, and doctors making changes to treatment plans can immediately change the care someone receives. That’s why we pay close attention to our Pinnacle survey results as they come in each month, along with the annual awards.” Pinnacle samples and delivers...

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Repealing an Iowa law could negatively impact rural Iowans’ access to health care

Iowa has one of the highest quality, lowest cost health care systems in the United States. And at the heart of that system are 118 community hospitals that stand ready, every day and every night, to serve everyone, regardless of their ability to pay. A move is underway in Des Moines to change an Iowa law, the Certificate Of Need legislation, that we think might threaten rural health care. The law, enacted in 1977, was designed to avoid duplication of medical services to keep costs down for patients. In Iowa this law, requiring approval of new facilities costing $1.5 Million or more, has worked very well. Critics of the law are now saying it “stifles competition” and eliminating the law would lead to private investment in new medical facilities providing more choices, and therefore, lower costs. We think those critics fail to understand the realities of living in rural Iowa. What’s most important for rural communities isn’t the opportunity to go shopping for doctors or surgeries like critics imagine, it is an emergency department close-by and staffed to respond when needed. What’s important is a relationship with a primary care provider and access to the technology needed to provide for your health. What’s at stake is the future of rural Iowa and the health of rural Iowans. The new facilities built without oversight won’t be located in small towns....

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More time for patients, less time for computers is the goal for Augmedix at the Vinton Family Medical Clinic

Even though you know distracted driving isn’t safe, you’ve probably driven down the road looking for something on the seat next to you, or worse yet, looked at your phone when you should have been looking at the road. Your health care provider is required to record the results of your visits in an electronic health record (EHR) and that has created doctors and other health care providers who sometimes seem more concerned with the computer than they are with you. Health care providers and patients are both frustrated with the situation. Starting soon, Virginia Gay’s Vinton Family Medical Clinic will use new technology to improve accuracy and eliminate distractions. Called Augmedix, the system allows assistants in a remote location to have all the information they need to make the notes and check all the boxes required for each visit. Your health care provider is still responsible for the accuracy of the information and is required to review and approve each record before it becomes permanent, but instead of trying to capture information during your visit or from memory afterward, everything is done by a highly trained technician. Click here to see a short video about Augmedix on the Virginia Gay Hospital website. Patients can request that the glasses transmitting the information be turned off and the assistants be excluded from highly sensitive parts of their visit, or they...

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Virginia Gay’s family medical clinics welcome two new health care providers

Two new health care providers have started seeing patients at Virginia Gay’s family medical clinics. At present the two new providers will be helping in Vinton and the other Virginia Gay clinics in Atkins, Van Horne, and Urbana. Ben Nigg, PA-C, grew up in Solon, Iowa, so the small town of Vinton doesn’t require much of an adjustment. Ben was a member of the most recent class of PA students to graduate from the nationally recognized program at the University of Iowa.  Abby Stermer, PA-C, is originally from Colorado Springs and was featured in last fall’s issue of Virginia Gay’s “Thrive” magazine when she was here as a student intern. Both are recent graduates of the Physician Assistant program at the University of Iowa. “We’re very pleased to have Abby and Ben join us to see patients in the clinics,” says Mike Riege, Virginia Gay Hospital Administrator, “with their help we will be making some strides toward reducing the time it takes for patients to get an appointment.” To learn more about Abby and Ben, visit the new Virginia Gay Hospital website.       http://virginiagayhospital.org/uncategorized/virginia-gays-family-medical-clinics-welcome-two-new-providers/...

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Lymphedma symptoms and treatment

This article was contributed by Molly Gardeman, COTA/L, CLT,  an occupational therapist with Virginia Gay Hospitals and Clinics. In this article she shares information about lymphedema, the buildup of lymph fluid creating problems with swelling, most often in the arms or legs. The lymphatic system is your body’s drainage network consisting of lymph vessels. Lymph vessels help regulate fluid levels and provide protection against infection.  The lymph vessels do their work by pushing excess fluid, or “lymph,” through filters throughout your body called “lymph nodes.” Lymph nodes remove bacteria and other debris from the lymph fluid before draining into your bloodstream.  “Lymphedema” is the buildup of abnormally thick lymph fluid creating swelling most often in one or both the arms or legs.  This condition typically develops when lymph nodes or lymph vessels have been damaged, removed, are impaired or even missing resulting in the blockage or interruption in the flow of the lymph. There are two types of lymphedema – primary or secondary.  Primary lymphedema is a rare, inherited condition which causes problems with the development of lymph vessels throughout your body.  Examples of primary lymphedema include congenital lymphedema (Milroy’s Disease), early-onset lymphedema (Meige’s Disease), or late-onset lymphedema.  Secondary lymphedema is caused by damage to your lymph nodes or lymph vessels. The damage can  be the result of infection, injury or trauma, scar tissue formation, surgery, cancer or radiation...

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