Health

Tue
16
Apr

Medical Laboratory Week is April 14-20: Veterans Memorial Hospital Lab continues to use leading technology to improve patient outcomes


VMH celebrates Medical Laboratory Week April 14-20 ... Medical Laboratory Week is April 14-20. The Veterans Memorial Hospital Lab continues to use leading technology to improve patient outcomes. There are four instruments at VMH that together can identify 53 different organisms and 10 different antibiotic-resistance genes with the most common panel being the new Mini Respiratory Panel which identifies COVID-19, Influenza A and B, RSV and Rhinovirus. Pictured are some of the instruments that perform this molecular testing. The photo above also includes, from left to right, Mary Jo Meyer, MLT; Megan Rathbun, MLT; Erica Mannette, MLS; Beth Fitzpatrick, MT; Karli Rains, Lab Assistant; and Robin Gray, MLS. Pictured below, left to right, is Kelsey Weymiller, MLT; Donna Jean Wood, MLT; Caty Bruening, MLS, Lab Manager; Jenna Collins, MLT, in back; Marie Loven, MLS, in front and Michelle Benda, MLT. Submitted photos.

In the world of Medical Laboratory Science, it doesn’t get more accurate than molecular technology. Recent advances have also made these technologies more efficient and more affordable. At Veterans Memorial Hospital (VMH) Lab, molecular technology is used to identify infections by using DNA and/or RNA extraction.

There are four instruments at VMH that together can identify 53 different organisms and 10 different antibiotic-resistance genes. The most common panel that is performed is the new Mini Respiratory Panel, composed of COVID-19, Influenza A and B, RSV, and Rhinovirus.

Molecular testing not only takes less time than classic testing, but it is also more sensitive because it takes less organism to produce a positive result. These together mean quicker treatments for those with certain infections.

Tue
16
Apr

April is Defeat Diabetes Month and Foot Health Month; Tips on how to “De-Feet” diabetes

Dr. Kristina Thompson
Dr. Kristina Thompson

by Dr. Kristina Thompson, Podiatrist
 
Dr. Kristina Thompson, Podiatrist, provides specialty foot care at Veterans Memorial Hospital. She recommends the following for “de-feeting” diabetes.
• Avoid soaking feet, this causes excessive dryness and can lead to cracks.
• Check feet daily for any new blisters, wounds, etc.  
• Avoid going barefoot, especially if you have neuropathy/diabetic nerve damage.
• Ask your provider about diabetic shoes.
• Work with your providers and/or diabetes educator to keep your glucose within target range.  This decreases risk of complications.
• If you notice a blister or wound, don’t delay treatment.  Get in with a provider with a knowledge on wound care.
• Exercise if you are able.  This increases blood flow circulation.
• Don’t remove callus or corns yourself, see your doctor!

Tue
16
Apr

Diabetes Support Group to meet at Veterans Memorial Hospital

The Veterans Memorial Hospital (VMH) Diabetes Support Group will hold its next meeting Thursday, April 18, at 10 a.m. The meeting will be held at Veterans Memorial Hospital in the Large Conference Room, located on the lower level of the hospital.

Angie Mettille, RN, Certified Diabetes Educator, will discuss the topic of diabetes technology. Most people and patients carry a smartphone now, and there are many apps that are free and easy to download and use that are helpful with activity monitoring, carbohydrate counting or blood sugar tracking.

She will also talk more about continuous glucose monitors and encourages everyone living with diabetes to use one. She states, “As with anything else in the medical world, insurance companies play a big part in making those devices affordable for those wanting to use them, so they are not an option for everyone… yet.”

Tue
16
Apr

Total of 40 youth complete Babysitting Seminar at Veterans Memorial Hospital

Congratulations to the 40 students who completed the recent Veterans Memorial (VMH) Hospital Babysitting classes Friday, March 29. The classes were instructed by Corinne Cook, RN, and consisted of teaching the qualities of being a good babysitter including basic child care, accident prevention, fire prevention, and first aid.

These new babysitters also learned CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) and the Heimlich Maneuver in the case of a choking child. The Waukon Police Department even helped with addressing and teaching about many safety concerns.

Tue
16
Apr

Public Health Month; Help prevent measles

Measles cases are on the rise in many parts of the world. There have been recent cases cited throughout the United States.

“This national increase in measles cases has brought the protection provided by vaccinations back into the spotlight,” said Lisa Moose, RN, Veterans Memorial Hospital (VMH) Community and Home Care/Allamakee County Public Health Director. “It’s always important to keep your vaccinations up-to-date, but during times like this, when we know a virus is circulating in many states, it’s especially critical to check with your health care provider to be sure you and your family’s vaccinations are current.”

The best way to prevent measles is to get the measles-mumps-rubella shot (called MMR). The MMR vaccine is very safe and effective. Two doses of MMR vaccine are about 97% effective at preventing measles; one dose is about 93% effective.

Wed
10
Apr

Occupational therapy offered by Veterans Memorial Hospital; Keeping you safe at home


VMH rehabilitation services ... April is National Occupational Therapy Month. Mary Christoffer of Lansing has been utilizing the Veterans Memorial Hospital rehabilitation services of occupational therapy, physical therapy and home health nursing since January, following a fall and hip fracture. She will soon be discharged from these services since she has progressed well and met all of her goals. She is pictured here with Amy Evanson, Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant who travels to homes throughout the area, assisting with occupational therapy services. Submitted photo.

April is National Occupational Therapy Month. Occupational therapists work with patients to help them stay safe in their own home. They also help patients who have been hospitalized return to their homes by inspecting the home and encouraging modifications prior to the patient returning home.      

Mary Christoffer of Lansing has been utilizing the Veterans Memorial Hospital rehabilitation services of occupational therapy, physical therapy and home health nursing since January, following a fall and hip fracture. She will soon be discharged from these services since she has progressed well and met all of her goals.

Wed
10
Apr

Allamakee County Public Health to resume monthly free blood pressure clinic checks in April


Monthly free blood pressure clinics resume in Allamakee County ... Veterans Memorial Hospital Community and Home Care Allamakee Public Health will resume the monthly free blood pressure checks at all Allamakee County libraries beginning this month. Nurses from Allamakee County Public Health will be on-site each month to take and record these complimentary blood pressure readings. See the above monthly schedule for more details. Submitted graphic.

Veterans Memorial Hospital (VMH) Community and Home Care Allamakee Public Health has resumed the free monthly free blood pressure check clinics all around Allamakee County beginning in April. Nurses from Allamakee County Public Health will be on-site to take a blood pressure reading. Blood pressure results will be recorded on a log card given to all visitors to bring back each month so their next results can be logged.

This is the monthly schedule for these free blood pressure clinics which are being held at all city libraries in Allamakee County on the following recurring days:
• Lansing: 1st Monday of the month 9:45-11:45 a.m.
• Postville: 1st Wednesday of the month 9-11 a.m.
• Harpers Ferry: 3rd Wednesday of the month 9-11 a.m.
• New Albin: 4th Monday of the month 2-4 p.m.
• Waterville: 1st Tuesday of the month 2-4 p.m.
• Waukon: 4th Monday of the month 10 a.m.-Noon

Wed
10
Apr

April is Donate Life Month; Register to become a donor

April is Donate Life Month and serves as a reminder to the public to register to be an organ and tissue donor.  According to the Iowa Donor Network, organ and tissue donation is a gift that saves and heals hundreds of thousands of lives each year.  For transplant recipients and patients on the transplant waiting list, the gift of donation offers a second chance at life; a chance to move forward and fulfill the legacy left behind by the gracious donor.

Over 106,000 men and women in the United States are waiting for a life-saving transplant. That includes over 600 Iowans. One donor can save the lives of up to eight people through organ donation and heal and enhance the lives of more than 300 through tissue and eye donation. Every nine minutes another name is added to the national transplant list and 17 people die each day waiting.

Wed
10
Apr

Diabetes Support Group to meet at Veterans Memorial Hospital

The Veterans Memorial Hospital Diabetes Support Group will hold its next meeting Thursday, April 18, at 10 a.m. The meeting will be held at Veterans Memorial Hospital (VMH) in the Large Conference Room, located on the lower level of the hospital.

This diabetes class is open to everyone who has diabetes or who has a friend or loved one who has diabetes.  For more information on the Diabetes Support Group, call  Angie Mettille, RN, at Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon at 563-568-3411.
 

Wed
10
Apr

Fiber facts and recommendations from Veterans Memorial Hospital

by Brandy Strub, MS, RD/LD, Dietitian, Veterans Memorial Hospital

Fiber is a type of carbohydrate found in plant foods that the body can’t digest and comes in two varieties: soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. Most high fiber foods have both, so it is best to just focus on overall fiber intake.

Fiber not only keeps bowel movements regular, which helps prevent against diverticular disease, hemorrhoids, and possibly decreases a person’s risk of colorectal cancer, it also helps:
1. Control blood sugars by slowing down the absorption of sugar and preventing blood sugar spikes
2. Protect heart health by helping lower cholesterol
3. Aid in weight management by making you feel fuller longer
4. Enhance gut health by feeding the good bacteria in your gut which may lead to better mood, less inflammation, healthier skin, etc.

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