Friday, March 14, 2014

GRMC Offers Class to Minimize Falls

A “Matter of Balance: Managing Concerns about Falls” class will be offered in April through Grinnell Regional Public Health. This program is designed to reduce concerns about falling and increase the activity levels of older adults who have concerns about falls.

This program offers ways to improve balance, flexibility, and strength. After the six weekly sessions, participants will learn a combination of techniques to build their strength and confidence. The class will be offered on Wednesdays, from April 2 to May 21, from 9 to 11 a.m. at the Mayflower Community, Montgomery Lounge, 616 Broad St, Grinnell. The program was developed through Boston University with support from the National Institute of Aging.  

“We will teach exercises to participants to improve strength, flexibility, and endurance,” says Patty Hinrichs, RN, director of public health and one of the instructors. “It also focuses on reducing the fear of falling. Participants will learn techniques for what to do if they do happen to fall. They will learn to set realistic goals, make changes to reduce fall risks, and how to view falls as controllable.”

After a fall, many older adults fear going out. This program identifies ways that adults can continue to get out socially and for physical activity in a safe manner.

“We want people safe without having to change their lifestyle or activity level,” Hinrichs says. “What we know about falls is that 30 percent of community dwelling adults fall each year and 20 percent of falls cause physical injury. A large portion of falls are preventable.”

For more information or to register call Grinnell Regional Public Health at 641-236-2385. A $15 fee is assessed.

Nominate an Exceptional Nurse for The DAISY Award

Grinnell Regional Medical Center invites members of the public to nominate an outstanding nurse for The DAISY Award. GRMC will honor all nursing staff during National Hospital Week with The DAISY Award. Nominations are due Friday, April 4.

The award was established by The DAISY Foundation in memory of J. Patrick Barnes, who died at age 33 of an auto-immune disease. DAISY stands for “diseases attacking the immune system.” The DAISY Award recognizes outstanding nurses for their compassion and care.

“At GRMC and our affiliated clinics, we have many DAISY nurses,” says Doris Rindels, GRMC vice-president. “They are the kind of nurse that other nurses want taking care of their mom. They are the nurses that go above-and-beyond for their patients. Their coworkers feel that working with them is a real gift because they care about all aspects of their job and teammates.”

GRMC is participating in this award program with Mercy Health Network of Central Iowa to honor outstanding nurses. All nurses (LPN, RN, and Advance Practice Nurses) who provide direct patient care in any GRMC department or clinic are eligible to be nominated for a DAISY Award.

Nomination forms are available at GRMC nurse’s stations, the nursing administration office, human resources, The Light Center for Public Health, and GRMC clinics in Lynnville, Victor, and Deer Creek Health Center in Toledo.

The Mercy Health Network of Central Iowa will also recognize a DAISY Award registered nurse in June. Those selected from Mercy Health Network of Central Iowa affiliate hospitals, such as GRMC, will be considered to be the DAISY Award recipient at the network level. They will attend a special presentation ceremony in Des Moines and one registered nurse will be chosen to be the DAISY Award recipient for the entire Mercy Health Network of Central Iowa.

GRMC Sees Strong Giving in 2013

Grinnell Regional Medical Center reports that the organization raised nearly $2.5 million in 2013, through gifts to the Moving at the Speed of Life comprehensive campaign, the annual fund drive, memorials, and special events.

“Philanthropy makes so many things possible at GRMC,” says Denise Lamphier, GRMC director of communications and development. “Gifts and grants to GRMC created and improved services, helped to secure new technology, and engaged donors in this great hospital. The level of community support is truly extraordinary and we are very grateful.”

GRMC raised more than $1.93 million in gifts and pledges for the Moving at the Speed of Life comprehensive campaign to:
·      Modernize the emergency department and create an urgent care clinic.
·      Enhance the chemotherapy and infusion services.
·      Purchase state-of-the-art robotic surgery equipment and a new CT scanner.
·      Renovate Postels Community Health Park to accommodate a growing wellness program.
·      Establish an endowment for Grinnell Regional Mental Health Center.
·      Replace equipment for obstetrics and radiology departments, patient rooms, and nutrition services.

The campaign’s goal is to raise funds for $7.5 million in projects. As of February 2014, the campaign has raised more than $2.5 million in pledges, gifts, and reserved funds from the previous capital campaign designated for the Brownell Emergency and Trauma Center.  

In the first year of the campaign, GRMC and its volunteers have focused on raising funds from members of the business community as well as members of the GRMC family.

To date, the business community has contributed $1,734,671 to the campaign effort, with lead gifts from Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company and its employees and foundation, Manatts, Inc., Grinnell College, Lincoln Savings Bank, Poweshiek Mutual Insurance, and others.

Members of the GRMC “family” include employees, medical staff, members of the board of directors, and the foundation board. Together, 96 percent of the GRMC family has made a gift or pledge toward the Moving at the Speed of Life comprehensive campaign for a total of $720,708.

“This is really extraordinary,” says Nicholas Kuiper, DO, general surgeon and one of four co-chairs for the Moving at the Speed of Life campaign. “People are eager to participate in this campaign and we are excited to move into the next phase of raising funds for these important projects.”

Internal Efforts Earn National Recognition
GRMC learned in early February that the internal campaign, called Kuiper’s Challenge, won a national Fundraising Star award from FundRaising Success honoring some of the fundraising industry's best and brightest. Nicholas Kuiper, MD, surgeon with Surgical Associates, and Denise Lamphier and Laura Lof, from the GRMC office of communications and development, were nominated for their team effort to create a culture of philanthropy at GRMC during difficult times.

In all, 67 percent of staff made an outright gift or pledge. When counting the honorariums, GRMC reached a 90 percent participation rate, improved staff morale, and helped GRMC staff find the joy in giving.

“The employee commitment to the campaign is so critical as we begin to roll out to the public,” says Dan Agnew, GRMC’s capital campaign so-chair. “In addition to the extraordinary skill Dr. Kuiper demonstrates during surgery and the level of care he gives to his surgical patients, he is an unselfish and innovative fund raiser on behalf of GRMC. Dr. Kuiper’s enthusiasm makes it a joy working with him on the hospital campaign.”

Annual Fund and Other Giving
Another important component of support for the medical center is annual support. In 2013, GRMC donors contributed $156,553 to the annual fund drive for ongoing special projects such as the Grinnell Regional Community Care Clinic, bike helmets for area third graders, the GRMC Babies Room and many other annual operating needs.

“Gifts to the annual fund drive play a crucial role in GRMC’s ability to provide patient care that is recognized nationally for safety and quality,” Lamphier says. “GRMC’s investment into patient safety and quality has been recognized by the Leapfrog Group, now for the third year, naming GRMC a Top Hospital.

In addition to fund-raising activities, GRMC also supports its operating budget through grants. In 2013, GRMC received $113,000 for the immunization program at Grinnell Regional Public Health, bike helmets, infusion recliners for the new GRMC Auxiliary Chemotherapy and Infusion Suite, home visits for families with newborns, and infant massage classes to name a few.

"GRMC makes such a huge impact on our community and the entire region," said board chair Bill Menner. “The exceptional quality of the healthcare GRMC provides is recognized nationwide -- often times concurrently with major urban hospitals. And it would not be possible without the strong support of the many donors from throughout our region.  From the annual fund drive to Moving at the Speed of Life, the generosity of many makes GRMC a very special rural health center."

For additional information about supporting GRMC, contact Lamphier at 641-236-2589 or

Twins Delivered at GRMC

Weather conditions changed plans for the Graham family and GRMC’s obstetrical team delivered a set of twins. Lauren Graham, MD, and Andrew Graham, PhD, stayed in Grinnell and had their twins delivered by the GRMC medical team of Monica Brito, MD; Alex Anderson, CRNA; Laura Ferguson, MD; Ryan Dahlby Albright, MD; and the obstetrical staff of Kintzinger Women’s Health Center.

Though GRMC does not typically deliver twins due to higher risks for the babies and often a need for neonatal intensive care, the weather changed plans. Brito has delivered many sets of twins in her previous positions. Family care physicians Dahlby Albright and Ferguson, who both have delivered many babies at GRMC, provided care for the twins as they arrived. This team successfully welcomed Noah James and Benjamin Daniel Graham.

“It was truly amazing and I am so thankful for the care I received,” says Lauren Graham, MD, Grinnell Regional Internal Medicine physician. “Andrew and I had an excellent experience.”

Pre-diabetes and Diabetes Education Classes Offered

Grinnell Regional Medical Center’s Nutrition Therapy department will offer two different educational classes on diabetes and eating. These are free and open the public.

Area residents are invited to join a GRMC registered dietitian for a two-hour general program to learn more about eating when you have pre-diabetes or diabetes. The group education class will cover the food and blood sugar connection, how to use carbohydrates to control the blood sugar, meal planning with carbohydrate choices and how to read food labels.

Classes to be offered are:
“Diabetes and Your Diet” – Monday, March 17, and April 21, 5:30-7:30 p.m., East Tomasek. Reservations required by noon on March 14 for the March 17 class, and April 18 for the April 21 class.
“Pre-Diabetes and Your Diet” – Monday, April 28, 5:30-7:30 p.m. East Tomasek. Reservations required by noon on Friday, April 25.

“This is an interactive class that’s open to anyone, not just people who are new to diabetes or pre-diabetes,” explains Elaine Hammes, MS, RDN, LD, GRMC dietitian. “We invite individuals with diabetes or pre-diabetes, people who have family members with diabetes, and anyone who wants to learn more about how to live well with pre-diabetes and diabetes. Individuals who just want a review of using the diet to better control their blood glucose level are welcome as well.”

Reservations are required so the instructor brings enough materials. Please call GRMC at 641-236-2412, and leave your name and phone number if voice mail is received.