Health

Wed
24
Feb

VMH staff donates over $14,000 to Foundation’s Annual Appeal Campaign


Staff donation purchases CO2 monitors ... The Veterans Memorial Hospital Staff donated over $14,000 in personal donations in 2020 to the VMH Foundation in order to purchase needed equipment identified by the staff themselves. Pictured above, left to right, are hospital employees Cindy Barness, Housekeeper; Chuck Votsmier, Maintenance and EMT; and Shannen Mezera, Massage Therapist, with the new MAS CO2 Gas Monitors for the ambulance jump kits, which alert EMS staff of high CO2 levels upon entering a residence that may otherwise go unnoticed. Submitted photo.

Donation from VMH staff purchases needed equipment ... Rechargeable Ambulance Flashlights with emergency lighting were also identified as a need by staff and purchased for each ambulance with staff funds. Pictured above, left to right, are Katelyn Ramstad, Registered Health Information Technologist; Chuck Votsmier, Maintenance and EMT; and Dietsy Weymiller, RN. Other items purchased in 2020 with staff donations included a Kubota loader for the maintenance tractor, a microwave for patient families and medication trays for home care patients. The Veterans Memorial Health Care Foundation’s annual direct mail campaign was recently mailed out to area communities served by the hospital to raise funds for the new VMH Medical Clinic. Submitted photo.

The staff of Veterans Memorial Hospital pledged over $14,000 this last year to the VMH Health Care Foundation’s annual appeal campaign. The total raised in personal staff contributions was used to purchase equipment and furnishings identified by the staff that is needed in the hospital. This fund drive is held each fall for all staff at Veterans Memorial Hospital and consistently raises over $12,000 each year.

This past year, many items were purchased through generous monetary donations from hospital staff including medication trays for all Community and Home Care patients, a Kubota loader for the tractor used on campus by the Maintenance Department, a microwave for use by patients’ family members which is located in the Chapel/Meditation Room, rechargeable flashlights for the ambulances and a CO2 gas monitor for the ambulance jump kits.

Wed
24
Feb

February is Heart Month: The seriousness of chest pain

Chest pain is a common presenting complaint in any emergency room, including the emergency room at Veterans Memorial Hospital. There is always the possibility of heart disease in every complaint of chest pain or upper abdominal pain, and it must be taken very seriously.

The common signs and symptoms of an acute myocardial infarction, commonly called a heart attack, are;

1. Chest pain (crushing, squeezing or heaviness).
2. Sudden onset of weakness, nausea, fainting and sweating without an obvious cause.
3. Pain that radiates to the shoulders, neck or arms.

These symptoms occur when the blood flow to a part of the heart is blocked, often by a blood clot. This happens because coronary arteries that supply the heart with blood slowly become clogged from a buildup of cells, fat and cholesterol called plaque.

Wed
24
Feb

Local blood drives now accepting convalescent plasma donations

The next LifeServe Blood Center blood drive will be held Thursday, March 4 from 12-5 p.m. at the First Baptist Church in south Waukon. Blood drives are held every month in Waukon. The LifeServe Blood Center of Iowa supplies Veterans Memorial Hospital with blood and blood products. Many Iowans are encouraged to make donating blood on a regular basis their New Year’s resolution.

The need for blood has not stopped during COVID-19 and is in even higher demand, so the local blood drives continue to be held. LifeServe team members only report to work if they are healthy and only healthy donors are eligible to give blood. Blood drives are essential medical services and not considered mass gatherings. The number of donors is limited to ensure donor separation, and staff has strict cleaning and disinfection schedules. Other measures are also in place to ensure the safety of the blood supply so these lifesaving donations can continue during COVID-19.

Wed
24
Feb

Memorials received by Health Care Foundation

Memorials were recently received by the Veterans Memorial Health Care Foundation in memory of Orin Grangaard by Barb and Mark Howe, Jim and Jennifer Withers, the Thursday Club, Carolyn Thomson and Gene Maurer, Jon and Cathy Buhl, and Norb and Nola Palmer.

Memorials were also received in memory of Dan Buege by George and Helen Beardmore, Chuck and Lois Votsmier, Gordon and Darlene Kaeser, Randy and Patty Nordheim, Patsy Kerndt and Kerndt Brothers Bank.

Memorials were also given in memory of Dale Kiesau by Dave and Laurie Martin and Chuck and Lois Votsmier; in memory of Ron Goeke by Patsy Kerndt and in memory of Russ Roe by Jan Ellingson.

In addition, a donation was received from Robin Sawyer in honor of Wayne and Nona Sawyer.

Wed
17
Feb

Veterans Memorial Hospital still requires face masks for all services


The use of face masks continues at VMH ... Face masks are still a must at Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon when it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19. They are always worn by all staff, such as those pictured above. Veterans Memorial Hospital is still continuing to require the use of masks for all patients and visitors as well, even following the recent updated Governor proclamation. Anyone who is coming to the hospital for any type of service will be asked to continue to wear a mask during their visit. Social distancing and excellent hand hygiene will be continued as well, all in an effort to continue to reduce the spread of COVID-19 on the hospital’s campus and in the area communities served by the hospital. Submitted photo.

Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon is still continuing to require the use of masks, even following the recent updated Governor proclamation. Anyone who is coming to the hospital for any type of service will be asked to continue to wear a mask during their visit. Social distancing and excellent hand hygiene will be continued as well, all in an effort to continue to reduce the spread of COVID-19 on the hospital’s campus and in the area communities served by the hospital.

Veterans Memorial Hospital did recently make an adjustment to its visitor policy, increasing from one visitor per day per inpatient to three visitors per day; however, this adjustment is subject to change at any time. All visitors are asked to check in at the main entrance of the hospital prior to their visit.

Wed
17
Feb

National Cardiac Rehabilitation Week is February 14-20; The importance of cardiac rehabilitation, a service offered at Veterans Memorial Hospital


Cardiac Rehabilitation at Veterans Memorial Hospital ... The heart needs to exercise in order to regain much of its strength following any cardiac event, but patients need close supervision due to the heart’s delicate condition. In Cardiac Rehabilitation, the patient’s heart is continually monitored by a telemetry unit that watches the heart’s activity. Pictured at right is Jim Ranum of Waukon, using the arm pulleys during one of his recent Cardiac Rehabilitation sessions, assisted by Amy Rolfs, RN. The nurses continually supervise each session documenting all activity, doing blood pressure checks, measuring improvement and patient’s response to activity. Without this local Cardiac Rehabilitation program at Veterans Memorial Hospital, many heart patients would need to travel a great distance, three times per week to attend another program, or go without proper rehabilitation. For more information on the Veterans Memorial Hospital Cardiac Rehabilitation Department, call Veterans Memorial Hospital at 563-568-3411. Submitted photo.

Cardiac Rehabilitation helps fight against heart disease ... Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Half a million people die each year due to this disease. Many people develop symptoms of heart disease when they are in their 40s or 50s, interrupting a most productive time of life. Cardiac Rehabilitation is an important tool in the fight against heart disease. Rehabilitation involves monitored exercise, nutritional counseling, emotional support and education about lifestyle changes to reduce risks of heart problems. Pictured in the photo at right is Frank Sivesind of Waukon with Veterans Memorial Hospital Cardiac Rehabilitation Nurse Dietsy Weymiller, RN during one of his recent Cardiac Rehabilitation sessions. Submitted photo.
Wed
17
Feb

Be alert for COVID-19 scammers

The Iowa Healthcare Collaborative alerted Veterans Memorial Hospital of news of COVID-19 scams which they had received from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Scammers are using telemarketing calls, text messages, social media platforms, and door-to-door visits to perpetrate COVID-19-related scams.

Examples shared by the Iowa Healthcare Collaborative included:

Wed
10
Feb

February 14-20 is National Cardiac Rehab Week: Cardiac Rehabilitation at VMH - A highly utilized local service


February 14-20 is National Cardiac Rehab Week ... Veterans Memorial Hospital began its own Cardiac Rehabilitation program nearly three decades ago to help fulfill a need in the community - a need that has been and continues to be well utilized. Pictured from left to right is Cardiac Rehab Nurse Diane Weymiller, RN with Cardiac Rehab patient Ed Stamper of Waukon, who is seated on the NuStep machine in the Cardiac Rehab Department. Submitted photo.

Veterans Memorial Hospital (VMH) in Waukon began its own Cardiac Rehabilitation Department nearly three decades ago to help fulfill a need in the community - a need that has been and continues to be well utilized.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Half a million people die each year due to this disease. Many people develop symptoms of heart disease when they are in their 40s or 50s, interrupting a most productive time of life. Cardiac Rehabilitation is an important tool in the fight against heart disease. Rehabilitation involves monitored exercise, nutritional counseling, emotional support and education about lifestyle changes to reduce risks of heart problems.

Wed
10
Feb

February is Heart Month: The Facts on Heart Health

Over 950,000 Americans die each year from cardiovascular disease. Since February is National Heart Month, Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon provides the following facts and tips on heart health:

Wed
10
Feb

Working through the winter blues

from the American Institute for Cancer Research

Many people feel more anxious and depressed during the winter months. For some people, these mood changes are so severe that they interfere with life activities and enjoyment. Unfortunately, people affected by the syndrome “seasonal affective disorder” (SAD) often don’t realize that it can be treated through several different light and lifestyle approaches.

Symptoms of SAD include sadness and sluggishness, particularly in the afternoon and evening. There may also be increased desire for sleep, increased appetite and carbohydrate cravings - which often lead to weight gain. These symptoms occur in winter and fade in spring and summer. Official diagnosis of the syndrome requires that these changes occur over three or more winters. Researchers believe that changing levels of sunlight affect the body’s production of serotonin, a hormone which seems to promote positive mood.

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