Thursday, April 19, 2012

GRMC Foundation Board Welcomes New Members

Grinnell Regional Medical Center’s Foundation Board added two new members, Debby Pohlson and Susan Witt, at its April meeting.
Pohlson completed a 12-year term on the GRMC Board of Directors in January. She works as an assistant at Jensen Optometrists. Pohlson grew up in Grinnell and graduated from Grinnell High School. She attended St. Ambrose College in Davenport, and received her B.A. in psychology.
            Pohlson has a long history of community support and involvement. She follows in the footsteps of her parents, Don and Ethel Howig. She is involved with the local musical group, Shults and Company, and serves on the Grinnell Area Arts Council Board. Pohlson and her husband, Paul, have two adult children, Sarah and Scott, and three grandchildren, Alex, Josie, and Olivia.
Witt is still serving on the GRMC board of directors, currently as the immediate past chair. She’ll do double duty on both boards for one year, until her term on the board of directors ends in 2013. She is a co-owner of Miraco, Corp. Witt, the daughter of the late Paul W. Ahrens and Dr. Peter and Diane Boeke, grew up in Grinnell and graduated from Grinnell High School. She earned a B.A. in English from the University of Iowa and is certified by Roosevelt University in Chicago to be a lawyer’s assistant.
Witt’s long list of community volunteer involvement illustrates her strong support for Grinnell and the surrounding area. She serves as the vice-president of the Ahrens Foundation Board and president of the Ahrens Park Foundation. She’s been a past board member and/or officer with the Grinnell Athletic and Recreation Center, Grinnell Golf and Country Club, Levart Club, and P.E.O. Chapter BM. She is also a life-time member of the GRMC Auxiliary.
Witt and her husband, Michael, returned to Grinnell more than 15 years ago. They have three children: Daniel, Ryan, and Katherine.
“Debby Pohlson and Susan Witt, as former members of the board of directors, add significant strength to the foundation board, a board that already benefits from the advice and support of exceptional community leaders who inspire support for GRMC’s vital mission,” says George Drake, 2012 GRMC foundation board chair.
The 2012 officers serving with Drake are Sally Lang, chair-elect; and Julie Gosselink, secretary/treasurer.
Other foundation board members are: Sig Barber; Orville Bloethe; Warren Bower, MD; Pete Brownell; Jenny Erickson; Jan Hansen; Joanie Heimsoth; Clark Jensen, OD; Carol Jordan; Mark Kennett; Todd C. Linden; Leila Maring; Leonard Seda; Nancy Walters Smith; Sally Smith; Pat Supple; Dave Vander Linden; and Victor Wilson, MD.
The medical center is currently engaged in a handful of fund-raising activities for which the board provides guidance, including the annual fund drive, the golf outing, a community breakfast, and planned giving activities.

GRMC Golf Tournament Set for Friday, June 8

Grinnell Regional Medical Center will hold its 23rd annual golf tournament on Friday, June 8, joining the Grinnell Games for the first time. Organizers say the most noticeable changes will be more prizes and more fun.
“The golf tournament is an important friend raiser for GRMC,” says Jeanette Budding, GRMC’s assistant director of communications and development. “This year we have partnered with the Grinnell Area Chamber of Commerce and merged our golf outings. By doing so, we’re excited to offer a bigger first place prize.” 
The tournament will be held at Grinnell Golf and Country Club, with tee off times of 7:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
“We’ve had a tremendous response so far to the golf outing. Golf spaces are filling very fast so interested golfers may log onto the Grinnell Games website to register,” Budding says. “In fact, the afternoon golf period is already completely full.”
The format is a four-player, best shot tournament, with a $1,000 first-place prize for the winning team. Other chances to win prizes include a $500 hole-in-one prize on holes 9 and 11, pin contests at each hole and “Beat the Pro” on hole number 2, where golfers win a prize if they can beat golf pro Mitch Burr as Burr uses the golfer’s club. A special recognition award will be given to the Poweshiek County team with the lowest score, as local teams compete for bragging rights.
“Our golf tournament is always such fun for participants, whether they are serious golfers or just want to get out and have a great time,” Budding says. “By combining the Chamber of Commerce golf outing with our event, we’ve reduced local competition for dates to have events and we strengthen the community ties. Revenues from the event will be shared with both the chamber and GRMC.”  
Entry fee for the tournament is $85 per person and cart rental is $30. Teams for four with a cart may register for $400. Registration deadline is June 1. The rain date for the tourney is set for Friday, June 15.
“Our sponsors have been wonderful as we continue this longstanding tradition in Grinnell.  I want to thank them for their support of the medical center and the Grinnell chamber of commerce,” Budding says.
Eagle Sponsors are: Associated Computer Systems, Ltd., Bernie Lowe & Associates, Grinnell College, Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Co., Grinnell State Bank, and Jeld-Wen Windows & Doors.
Birdie Sponsors are: Great Western Bank, Manatt's Inc., Mercy Health Network, Pigott, Inc., and Wes Finch Auto Plaza.
19th Hole Sponsors are: Ahrens Park Foundation, Electronic Engineering, Family Dentistry, Health Enterprises of Iowa, Pagliai's Pizza, Priority Plastics, Ramsey-Weeks, Inc., Schoon Construction, Inc., Steel Erectors of Iowa, LLC, and Kevin White.
Pin/Hole Sponsors are: ASI Signage Innovations, Bernie Lowe and Associates, Grinnell Golf and Country Club, HyVee, KJWW Engineering Consultants, Michael’s, The Straub Corporation, and University of Iowa Community Credit Union.
Flight sponsors are: Bill's Jewelry Shop, Brookwood Inc., Casey's General Store, Julin Printing Co., Lincoln Savings Bank, Patriot Bank, Poweshiek Publications, Premier Printing, SpaceLabs Anesthesia, and Total Choice Shipping. A few more flight sponsors are needed for the event.
Raffle prize donations have been provided by Alliant Energy, Arnold Motor Supply, Brown’s Shoe Fit, Casa Margarita, Cory Hall Photography, Flowers on Fourth, Grinnell Sporting Goods/Rees Vinyl Signs & Designs, Grinnell State Bank, Montgomery Sandwich Shop, Pepper Tree at the Depot, SpaceLab Anesthesia, and University of Iowa Community Credit Union. Donations are still being accepted. Signage is provided by Rees Vinyl Signs & Designs.
Last year, the tournament helped GRMC raise nearly $12,000 to use toward the purchase of a new anesthesia machine. This year, GRMC’s portion of the funds raised will go toward the hospital’s Buy-a-Bed campaign. GRMC’s goal is to raise $253,000 this year for 23 new hospital beds. A gift of $10,000 or more creates an opportunity for donors to have an engraved plaque on the bed to commemorate the gift.
For more information, visit or contact Budding at

Enso Quartet Performs at GRMC SE*ED Program

With a 2010 Grammy nomination for “Best Chamber Music Performance,” the Enso Quartet has quickly become one of the country’s most exciting young ensembles. They are coming to Grinnell on Monday, April 30, through the Iowa Arts and Healthcare Project – A Journey through Iowa.” This is an initiative of the University of Iowa Hancher Auditorium.
            The Enso Quartet will be featured at the Grinnell Regional Medical Center’s SE*ED program on Monday, April 30, beginning at 10 a.m. in the Drake Community Library. Please note, seating will be limited and guests are encouraged to come early.
            From Grinnell, the quartet will tour hospitals around the state during the week of April 30, ending with their Hancher performance at Zion Lutheran Church in Iowa City on Friday, May 4.
In order to accommodate this extraordinary opportunity, Frank Heath and Betty Moffett have rescheduled their program, The Monroe Hotel, to Monday, June 11.
All of the GRMC SE*ED programs are free and open to the public. No reservations are required. Parking is available at the Drake Community Library, along Park Street, on Fifth Avenue, and in the First Presbyterian Church parking lot. Seniors needing transportation may call GRMC’s Office of Communications and Development at 641-236-2954 the Thursday before the program.
If you are a person with a disability who requires special assistance,
please call 641-236-2954. For more information about upcoming speakers please check GRMC’s website at or call 641-236-2954.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Physicians to Make Omelets @ GRMC Community Breakfast

Enjoy a “fresh approach to breakfast” on Saturday, May 5, when Grinnell Regional Medical Center will host a community-wide breakfast and health fair. This breakfast will feature made-to-order omelets, sausage, fresh fruit bar, mini-pastries, and beverages. The health fair will include health booths, balloon hats and animals for children, and drawings for prizes. Bring your camera and take a photo of the GRMC bears with your children.

“This community breakfast and health fair welcomes the public to walk into our facility, become familiar with us, learn about the services available, and enjoy a great breakfast,” says Denise Lamphier, director of communications and development for GRMC. “This year, the community has two opportunities to enjoy a meal and support local nonprofit programs on Saturday, May 5. We hope everyone will come out for breakfast at GRMC and then enjoy an evening at the Iowa Transportation Museum for the Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation Charity Car Raffle and Silent Auction.”
The GRMC community breakfast and health fair will run from 7 to 10 a.m. Breakfast will be served in the hospital cafeteria and booths will be in the Tomasek Conference Room and near the cafeteria of the hospital. GRMC again has partnered with the Iowa Egg Council for this event, which will provide the omelet making equipment, tools, and training. GRMC administrators, staff, and physicians will be the omelet makers for the morning.
Proceeds from the free-will donation breakfast will go toward the 2012 Annual Fund Drive to fund new beds for patients. A new bed will be on display during the breakfast so guests may see the unit and a demonstration of patient benefits. This fund drive will use a bear bedtime story theme. Standup cutouts of two bears will be available for photos with children as well as balloon animals and hats.
Come help kick-off National Hospital Week, May 6 to 12, at your community hospital. For more information, call GRMC at 641-236-2590.

Welcome Reception for Jessie Collum, ARNP

The public is invited to a welcome reception for Jessie Collum, ARNP, at Deer Creek Family Care, a clinic of Grinnell Regional Medical Center.  The primary care clinic is located in Deer Creek Health Center, 401 First Ave., Toledo.
Collum joins Sherry Parks, PA-C; Michelle Rebelsky, MD, FAAFP; and David Cranston, MD, at Deer Creek Family Care.
“An informal reception allows area residents to meet Jessie in a causal manner. Once people get to know her, they’ll love her,” says Sheryl Rutledge, GRMC Rural Clinic director. “We want everyone to stop by and meet Jessie. Then if they need medical attention, they can be comfortable with her.”
Prior to earning her advanced nurse practitioner degree, Collum worked nine years in the cardiovascular intensive care unit at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics as a registered nurse. Her work in an intensive care unit provided a springboard to becoming an ARNP.
During the reception community members may also help support GRMC during its annual fund drive letter sign event. Individuals may add personalized notes to the annual fund drive appeal letters. Please RSVP to Jan Veach, if you plan to help sign letters.
Refreshments – light sandwiches, fruit, and cookies – will be served. Guests may also enter a drawing for a free $25 gas card.
To schedule an appointment with a provider at Deer Creek Family Care, please call 641-484-2602. 

GRMC Joins National Hospital Donor Registration Campaign

Campaign strives to add 300,000 organ donor registrations in the United States.
Grinnell Regional Medical Center has joined the Hospital Donor Registration Campaign as a Hospital Partner. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, the campaign brings together national partners, local and regional organ, eye, and tissue donation organizations, and hospitals throughout the nation to educate employees and hospital communities on the importance of organ, eye, and tissue donation. The goal of the campaign is to register 300,000 new registered organ donors by April 30, 2012.
GRMC has partnered with the Iowa Hospital Association and the Iowa Donor Network to bring the Hospital Donor Registration Campaign to Iowa.
Suzanne Conrad, CEO at Iowa Donor Network, said, “We have enjoyed a close relationship with Iowa’s hospitals in identifying potential donors.  We are pleased that GRMC is taking additional steps to educate and increase donor registrations in their service area.”
The need is real. Each day, 78 Americans receive life-saving organ transplants and thousands more benefit from cornea and tissue transplants. These extraordinary gifts have been generously donated by ordinary people of all ages and backgrounds who took just a few minutes in a busy day to indicate their decisions to become organ and tissue donors. But broader awareness of the need for organ, eye, and tissue donation is crucial. There are more than 111,000 people awaiting an organ transplant in the United States and each week, more than 100 people on the national transplant waiting list die because no organ is available.
In Iowa, there are more than 600 people waiting for an organ transplant.
Here are some facts about organ, tissue, and eye donation:
• One organ donor can save as many as eight lives and improve many more

Safe Medication Disposal Collection Set

Does your medicine cabinet have expired, unused, or unwanted medications? You now have an opportunity to properly dispose of those prescription or over-the-counter medications. In a true community partnership, Grinnell Regional Medical Center and the Grinnell Police Department will participate in the National Take Back Initiative on Saturday, April 28. Anyone may bring in medications for safe, proper disposal between 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Spring Street side of the Grinnell Public Safety Building, 1020 Spring St.  
This national initiative provides an easy way to clean out medications not needed or wanted in a home. There is no cost for disposal.
“This partnership between the police department and GRMC provides a simple process to safely dispose of any medication,” explains Corey Wilson, GRMC pharmacist. “From the medical center’s perspective, this program removes the potential for expired and inappropriate medications to be consumed in a home. It’s good for patient safety and it’s good for the environment.”
The medications that are brought in during this one-day national blitz will be incinerated. This is considered the safest manner to dispose of medications. In October 2011, the Department of Justice reported that 188.5 tons of unwanted or expired medications were disposed.
“We will have curb-side drop off so an individual may simply drive up and hand the unwanted medications in for disposal,” explains Dave Menninga, detective with Mid-Iowa Drug Task Force. “There’s no reporting, no inventory taken. It’s anonymous. We are providing the opportunity for anyone to remove unwanted medications from the home.”
GRMC will have two pharmacists available at the collection as well as Officer Menninga. This program is free.

Why Recycling Matters in Grinnell Upcoming Topic for GRMC SE*ED Program

As the City of Grinnell converts from curbside sorting to the new single-stream method of recycling, many residents may be curious just how the new system works and why the City decided to make the change.
Jordan Scheibel, environmental program coordinator with Imagine Grinnell, will be the featured speaker at the Monday, April 23, Grinnell Regional Medical Center SE*ED program. The program begins at 10 a.m. at the Drake Community Library.
The SE*ED programs are free and open to the public. No reservations are required and refreshments are available. Please know that seating is limited to the first 100 people.
            The switch to single-stream recycling also offers an opportunity to consider how the larger recycling system actually works and why community participation matters. Scheibel will help demystify single-stream recycling and highlight the importance of recycling in our lives.
            There has been a change of schedule for April 30. The SE*ED program will welcome the internationally-known Enso Quartet. The string quartet is coming to Iowa as a part of the University of Iowa Hancher Entertainment Series. They will tour hospitals around the state during the week of April 30, ending with their Hancher performance at Zion Lutheran Church in Iowa City on May 4. There will be limited seating for this extraordinary performance from one of the world’s renowned string quartets at the April 30 SE*ED program.
            The previously scheduled program, “The Monroe Hotel” with Betty Moffett and Frank Heath, will now be held on Monday, June 11.  

Friday, April 6, 2012

County Health Ranking Improves in 2012

Poweshiek County ranked as the 20th healthiest county out of 99 counties in Iowa, according to a nationwide report released by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute.
“Poweshiek County improved in the overall health ranking, up from 23rd in 2011. This year’s ranking recognizes our successes as well as identifies opportunities for improvement in the health of our county’s residents,” said Patty Hinrichs, Grinnell Regional Public Health director.
The County Health Ranking has two components:
1) overall health outcomes (such as premature death rates, low birthweights, and poor health days); and
2) health factors, such as
            health behaviors (obesity, smoking, activity, alcohol consumption, teen pregnancy),              clinical care (uninsured, primary care physicians per population, diabetic screening, mammography screening),
social and economic factors (high school graduation, unemployment, children in poverty, violent crime rate), and
physical environment (air pollution-ozone days, access to recreational facilities, limited access to healthy foods, and fast food restaurants per population).
In the 2012 report, Poweshiek County made a significant increase in the health factors by ranking 25th compared to 39th in the 2011 report.
 “While we know these rankings are only a snapshot in time and not a complete picture of Poweshiek County’s health, we take them seriously,” Hinrichs says. “We’ll use the rankings in conjunction with other community health assessment and planning efforts to find the best ways to build on our successes and address our challenges. In particular, Poweshiek County Public Health received a County Transformation Grant to address specific health risks and behaviors present in the county. The two areas of greatest concern are adult obesity and lack of physical activity. The transformation grant addresses these as well as a higher than average incidence of colon cancer.”
The County Ranking Report identified several improvements overall:
                        2012                            2011
Health Outcomes        20                                23
Health Factors            25                                39
Measures with positive improvements in 2012 were:
• A decrease in the number of adults smoking – 18 percent in the 2012 report compared to 21 percent in the 2011 report.
• A decrease in the number of preventable hospital stays per 1,000 Medicare enrollees – the 2012 report indicates 62 versus 77 in the 2011 report.
• A decrease in the number of uninsured residents – 9 percent in 2012 compared to 12 percent in 2011.
• An increase in the number of individuals receiving diabetes screening – 87 percent in 2012 compared to 80 percent in 2011.
Areas that had a negative change in the 2012 report were:
• An increase in adult obesity to 31 percent of residents, up from 29 percent in 2011.
• An increase in the number of sexually transmitted diseases.
“Our county excelled in the clinical care factors; for example mammogram screenings, diabetic screenings, and preventable hospital stays. In the 2012 report, the county ranked 10th up from 14th in 2011. This is a direct correlation to the quality and breadth of services affiliated with Grinnell Regional Medical Center and programs with public health,” Hinrichs says.
The County Health Rankings were compiled by taking into account a range of health factors, including healthy behaviors, clinical care, social and economic factors, and physical environment. The County Health Rankings were developed through a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
For more information about the County Health Rankings, visit For information about public health in Poweshiek County, visit or call 641-236-2385.

Straws of Steel Project is Upcoming Topic for GRMC SE*ED Program

Grinnell College student, Ashraya Dixit will implement an international peace project this summer in Nepal to include a straw bale construction project. Dixit will present, “Straws of Steel,” at the Monday, April 16, Grinnell Regional Medical Center SE*ED program. The program begins at 10 a.m. at the Drake Community Library.
The SE*ED programs are free and open to the public. No reservations are required and refreshments are available. Please know that seating is limited to the first 100 people.
Dixit, a first-year student from Kathmandu, Nepal, will work this summer to pilot a straw bale construction project in Kapilbastu, Nepal, an area frequently hit by flash floods and earthquakes. The Straws of Steel project includes a workshop to introduce community members to the low cost, energy-efficient building technique, actual construction of straw bale houses, and documentation of the construction process in the disaster-prone area.
For this project, Dixit has earned a Davis Project for Peace award of $10,000.
            Other programs on the April schedule include Jordan Scheibel of Imagine Grinnell to discuss Grinnell’s new single-stream recycling program on April 23 and “The Monroe Hotel” with Betty Moffett and Frank Heath on April 30.   
Parking is available at the Drake Community Library, along Park Street, on Fifth Avenue, and in the First Presbyterian Church parking lot.
Seniors needing transportation may call GRMC’s Office of Communications and Development at 641-236-2954 the Thursday before the program.
If you are a person with a disability who requires special assistance,
please call 641-236-2954. For more information about upcoming speakers please check GRMC’s website at or call 641-236-2954.

GRMC Auxiliary to Host Spring Luncheon

The Grinnell Regional Medical Center Auxiliary invites the public to its annual spring luncheon, scheduled for Wednesday, April 25. The gathering will begin at noon in the Buckley Dining Room, Mayflower Community, Grinnell.
“Our spring luncheon is the time when we introduce the auxiliary’s healthcare scholarship recipients and we recognize volunteers for their hours of service to GRMC,” says Carol Jordan, GRMC Auxiliary spring luncheon committee chair.
“The auxiliary continually works to find new ways to support the health of the community and GRMC,” says Kerri Olson, GRMC volunteer coordinator. “Through thousands of hours of service, the GRMC Auxiliary is a full partner in healthcare at GRMC.”
Overall, the auxiliary presents the annual Women’s Health Focus and Baby Fair, supports the Stork’s Nest, provides healthcare scholarships, and has pledged to purchase a bed for GRMC’s new buy-a-bed campaign. Overall, the GRMC Auxiliary works as a positive influence on the patient experience at GRMC through their support services role.
Luncheon tickets are available for $8 at The Glass Gift Box located in the GRMC lobby. Membership forms are also available in The Glass Gift Box. For more information about the luncheon or volunteer opportunities at GRMC, call 641-236-2588.