New Faces In MCMC PT Department

31 Mar 2021 News

A pair of new faces have joined the staff in Mountrail County Medical Center’s Physical Therapy Department this month. Zachary Mravec and Taylor Augustine, recent graduates from Cleveland State University and an engaged couple, have taken traveling positions that will see them in the facility at least through June with an option to extend.

Mravec is originally from Rocky River, Ohio, having started his career as a licensed massage therapist for seven years. He says that he knew he wanted to be a physical therapist and used the career in massage therapy as a way to pay for the schooling.

Augustine is originally from a small town in Colorado, very similar to Stanley. As an undergrad, she focused on dance and was a professional dancer for ten years in Seattle, Wa. When she went to Cleveland for graduate school, the couple met in the same class.

They have chosen to be in Stanley and North Dakota, saying that it allows them the adventure of travel while working as physical therapists. They have a goal to travel for three years or so. It will enable them to see the country and in the end to better settle down with their finances in place and pay for their upcoming wedding. It also fits into the fact that both say they are a bit of a wanderer, liking to travel and try new things. They also look forward to being together in a setting where they can gain a variety of experience working with outpatient and hospital setting.

Their differences in training and background will also bring new skills to the MCMC Physical Therapy Department, something that department head Heidi Nielsen says she is looking forward to. This will benefit not only patients, but also give Nielsen insight into some specialized areas of physical therapy that she can use well into the future.

Taylor’s focus has been on dance rehabilitation and physical therapy. She has done continuing education and courses that have allowed her to specialize in treatment for performing arts. She is on the registry for doctors for dancers and the only provider currently in the state of North Dakota with that designation.

She also has completed level one of three in another niche specialty for pelvic health. This specialty deals with incontinence, pelvic pain, rehab after birth and pelvic floor issues for both men and women. She says that while physicians may see a patient with a pelvic floor dysfunction, pain or otherwise, not many look for the signs that lead to a different approach. That includes finding that patients with low back pain may actually have a pelvic floor issue.

When it comes to the dance rehab and therapy, she says that she can work with dancers of any age from the young child learning to dance, to the professional dancer, and the aging dancer who still dances recreationally. Well versed in all styles of dance, she says that she can treat all dance styles. That includes helping injured dancers with the rehab necessary to return to dance, as well as helping dancers enhance their performance as they train back to the demands of choreography. For the younger dancers, she says that she can do pointe shoe screenings, as well as helping them with training and safety.

Education, she says, begins with adolescent dancers. She has worked with professional dancers in the past, but her goal is to help young dancers prevent injury with education.

Zach’s background and focus deals with vestibular issues. He spent fifteen weeks in a clinic that focused on those issues including diagnosing and developing a plan of care and aftercare for patients who suffer from those dizziness and vertigo issues. The goal, while seeing a patient in therapy, is to provide them with the information to care for  those issues at home as well.

Beyond that, he says that anything neurological or involving the brain piques his interest. That has included helping patients with concussion issues. He also helps patients return to work and with prework testing. Having worked with workers’ comp patients, he was surprised at how motivated people are to get back to work.

Taylor is involved with the American Physical Therapy Association, a professional network that includes conferences and events to further the education of its members. She has also worked in advocacy, spending time at Capital Hill to address issues.

As a pair, they just became National Park members, starting at Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota with a mission to see most of the national parks.

They are also looking forward to experiencing life in Stanley, getting to know the residents and the community. Taylor says that she enjoys being back in a small town and the community feeling that comes with that. Stanley, they say, feels cozy, welcoming and friendly. For Taylor, she grew up that way and says that it is nice to be back in the circle.

As for the facility, they say that MCMC provides a great working environment. Everyone is approachable and in it for the right reasons, they want to help people. The approach is different than in a large city facility and feels more like why they wanted to work in healthcare.

Zach hopes that eventually they can also start some planning for nursing home residents. With the challenges that COVID has presented to nursing homes, he says they could maybe start with a small balance or dance course or class to increase activity. He would like to take that onto their plates to promote in the facility.

PT Department Head Heidi Nielsen says that she is thankful that the transition went so smoothly as one set of traveling therapists was leaving, this couple was coming in. Although the licensing stalled, it came through at the perfect time.

The skills that both bring to the table are something that Nielsen looks forward to learning more about.

She says that they see quite a few patients with vestibular issues. During her schooling, she says, they got the gist of how to treat those patients, but she did not have the intensive hands on experiences that Zach had in his clinic rotations. She looks forward to refining her techniques and helping patients find the appropriate after and home care, saying that if they can take those skills to home practice the therapists have done their job.

As for Taylor’s pelvic health training, Nielsen says this is something that needs more light shed on it. People have kept their issues quiet and do not like to talk about it. Trained hands and minds can find a way to improve that, saying that “just because it is frequent does not mean it is normal”.

She looks forward to learning from both of them and refining her skills along the way. “It is exciting for me, too,” she said. “Everyone has a different focus and passion. To get to see and learn from that allows others to grown and help patients more”. For MCMC as a rural clinic in a rural community, Nielsen says that “to be able to cover so many more avenues is something you do not typically see in rural care”.

New Provider Starts at MCMC

30 Dec 2020 News

A new Family Nurse Practitioner is starting at Mountrail County Medical Center in Stanley this month, helping to fill a need at the facility.

Jessica Charon, DNP, FNP-C, is originally from Carrington, graduating from Carrington High School. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, graduating in 2014. After working as an RN in Glasgow, MT for three years at a critical access hospital, she moved to Bismarck, where she continued her education and worked as an emergency room nurse at St. Alexius. She graduated in April of this year from the University of Mary with her doctorate of nursing practice (DNP) with a focus on family nurse practitioner (FNP).

Choosing MCMC for the next step in her career, Charon says that she has always loved rural health. Growing up in a small town, she says that practicing in a rural setting allows her to practice medicine in a setting she passionate about. While you see a is little bit of everything, patients also become like family to you. When she graduated, she knew she wanted to stay in North Dakota. Visiting Stanley, she says that she really liked the facility. The flexibility of the position, makes this job a great fit for her family.

Charon started at Mountrail County Medical Center a few weeks ago with her hire date of December 1. She is filling a gap for providers by becoming an exclusive emergency room provider. That means that she will be working eight twenty-four hour days per month. She is currently training with ENP-FNP Rich Laksonen as she prepares to take on her role. She says that with her previous experience she is more comfortable in the role as an emergency provider. She says that she loves coming into work in this setting and the challenge of not knowing what will be coming in the door with each patient. That, she says, keeps you on your toes and makes you learn.

She has signed a three year contract with MCMC and says that she is happy to be there. She points to the working relationships and a great work environment as a breath of fresh air. She credits great upper management on all levels for making that possible. She says that having great management and younger management staff means a more progressive attitude towards health care. Forward thinking and innovative medical care means the facility is doing great things for the community and she looks forward to being part of that.

Signing with MCMC, she says, is giving her the opportunity to fulfill what she sees as her professional long-term goals. She wants to establish a role she can stay in, providing good patient care while becoming more confident in her job. She believes that Stanley is a fantastic place for her to continue her journey. She is looking to certify as an ENP, specializing in emergency care. Following Rich’s training and skills in Stanley is something she believes will allow her to meet those goals.

Her current schedule does not have set days, but rather it is those eight days per month. That could be split over different times throughout the month, depending on facility needs. She says that Rich Laksonen does his days in a stretch, traveling as he does each month. She says that living closer to Stanley allows her to split those days up to meet staffing needs for the facility.

Her husband Benjamin works doing fiber installation and property management in Bismarck. The couple has two children, three year old daughter Kinley and four month old son Lincoln. The couple will continue to live in Bismarck for now. In the off time, the family enjoys traveling, being outdoors, camping and hunting. “We are very excited to have Jessica join our MCMC family. The minute we met her we knew she would be the perfect fit to round out our team of Providers. We now are fully staffed with exceptionally qualified and caring Providers for our patients. And we look forward to working together as a team to position ourself and start implementing our vision that will propel MCMC to the next level,” says Steph Everett, MCMC Administrator/CEO/Foundation Director/PR and Marketing Director.

Why Should You Mask Up?

23 Oct 2020 News

Mountrail County Medical Center released the following information this week.

With the number of COVID-19 cases continuing to rise, not just in our state, but also right here in Mountrail County, many of us are rightfully concerned. Just this week, Mountrail County’s risk designation changed from “moderate” to “high” risk. We have 96 active cases of COVID-19 in our county alone, as of Monday, October 19, 2020. North Dakota and Mountrail County are seeing higher numbers of COVID-19 than at any time during the previous months of the pandemic.

This has many of us anxious and concerned. We are concerned about our own health, the health of our children, our elderly parents and grandparents, our teachers, our healthcare providers, our friends and fellow community members. We worry about our jobs, whether our daycares will get shut down, whether our children will be able to stay in school, whether we will be able to visit our elderly family members. All of these are legitimate concerns.

Unfortunately, as our numbers of COVID-19 rise, these threats to our loved ones, our jobs, our schools, daycares, and communities rise as well. What can we do to help mitigate these risks? The answer is simple… MASKUP Mountrail County.

Coronavirus is spread by respiratory droplets that are expelled into the air when we talk, breathe, cough and sneeze. A mask acts as a simple barrier to help prevent these droplets from traveling into the air and onto the people around us. There is growing evidence from both clinical and laboratory studies that demonstrate that masks reduce the spray of these respiratory droplets when worn over the mouth and nose.

When we combine wearing a mask with other simple but effective infection control measures such as frequent hand washing, avoiding close contact, regularly cleaning and disinfecting, and staying home when we are ill, we have the power to DRASTICALLY reduce the risk of transmission COVID-19 and the subsequent consequences to our community. We want our children in school, we want to be able to continue to go to work, we want our parents and grandparents healthy. We as a community have the power to keep each other safe and healthy. It starts with you. #maskupmountrailcounty.

This article is republished with the gracious consent of the Mountrail County Promoter.

New Doctor To See Patients At MCMC

23 Oct 2020 News

Dr. Tracy Tomjack will start seeing patients at Mountrail County Medical Center in Stanley starting on Thursday, Nov. 5.

Originally from Parshall, Tomjack graduated from Parshall High School in 1999. She attended NDSCS in Wahpeton for one year, studying computer programming and then spent two years at Northwest College in Powell, WY, earning an associate degree in photography. She moved on to an undergraduate program at Minnesota State University in Moorhead in exercise science which is when she started looking into medicine as a career. After attending medical school at Des Moines University in Iowa, she did a general surgery internship with UND for one year and a family medicine residence at Big Stone Gap, VA.

She came back to North Dakota and spent three years in family practice in Hettinger before deciding she wanted to specialize and did a fellowship in primary care sports medicine at Geisinger in Wilkes-Barre and Scranton, Pennsylvania. Following that she returned to North Dakota and took a position with McKenzie County Healthcare System in Watford City.

Her practice is primary care sports medicine, focusing on nonoperative orthopedics. That includes a multitude of services including casting, splinting, arthritis injections, helping patients with back or neck pain, concussion treatment, ligaments and tendons. She says that includes any ache or pain along a muscle, bone or joint area.

Working hand in hand with Dr. Joshi she says that is good for patients. She can help expedite the visits as a patient gets ready for surgery or get them on the surgery schedule if needed, as well as helping with postoperative visits.

She also says that she looks forward to offering advanced technology and newer ways to help patients. In addition to injections including steroids and gels, she says that platelet-rich plasma should be available in the next few months. It takes your own blood and spin it down to isolate the platelets which they then inject into the sore spot – joint, tendon, etc. The platelets release growth factors which can help in the healing and pain process. She also says that using ultrasound guidance for injections allows her to look at the injury and provide better diagnostics and treatment. A DO, she says that she also uses osteopathic manipulative therapy, which is similar to chiropractic therapy. While she likes to specialize in the bones and muscles, she wants to look at all the different ways she can help her patients feel better.

Her schedule has her in Watford City on Mondays and Fridays, Tioga on the fourth Thursday of the month and now will include Stanley on the first Thursday of the month. She hopes to start seeing patients in New Town as well, but says that is still a work in progress. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Tomjack patients will call McKenzie County Healthcare Systems.

Adding Stanley to her schedule, she says, makes sense. With Dr. Joshi already established seeing patients here, they work well together but she has a unique niche to add to treatments. She also says that being closer to home is awesome and she likes being able to offer services to patients closer to home. While they may need to travel for surgery, they can have their follow up appointments at home. Stanley also feels, she says, like a hometown crowd, where she knows the people. She also says that small towns deserve good medical care without having to go to larger cities.

Tomjack will also be working closely with the MCMC physical therapy department, saying that the facility and resources available are amazing for a small town. As for the sports side, she says that she looks forward to helping high school athletes get back to playing as soon as they can.

She and her husband, Cameron, are living in Parshall where they are also helping her parents Jan and Greg Boschee on the family farm. Tracy says that she knew she wanted to come back to North Dakota. This is home and she enjoys the rural, country atmosphere. With family here and the farm, they are also able to do some of the farming as well.

Her husband Cameron came from Nebraska with the oil boom as a landman. He lived in Stanley for close to eight years during that time. The couple has been married for about four years. “Partnering again with McKenzie County Healthcare Systems came naturally,” says MCMC CEO Steph Everett.  “We already had the collaboration and strong working ties with them starting with Dan Kelly being my Preceptor to working with them to bring Dr. Joshi to Stanley.  We look forward in future endeavors of working hand and hand with MCHS to ensure the future of Critical Access Hospitals.”

This article is republished with the gracious consent of the Mountrail County Promoter.

MCMC Physical Therapy Offers Innovative Option

8 Oct 2020 News

To celebrate Physical Therapy Month in October, MCMC’s PT department will be running weekly challenges for employees in the facility. Patients, both new and old, will be receiving a gift from the department as well.

Heidi Nielsen, PT, DPT, says that physical therapy at MCMC covers a wide range of services, something important for patients in rural areas. They include orthopedic and neurologic therapies. The combination of the services they offer and the ability to use the aquatic center for therapy is something they feel is a privilege to offer in a small town. Nielsen is also certified in dry needling and

LSVT-BIG for Parkinson’s treatments.

Nielsen says that when Dr. Tomjack starts seeing patients in Stanley in November, they believe they will see even more activity in their department, including sports medicine therapy.

The goal in the department is to open as many doors as they can for patients, helping them find healthy, normal function as they recover or rehab.

Husband and wife Nile and Christine Price have been in the PT department at MCMC since May and are under contract through December 18.  Although COVID has caused some decrease in physical therapy needs, they and Nielsen have kept busy and they expect that to increase. As more facilities have resumed surgeries, things have picked up and they expect it will continue to increase as Dr. Tomjack starts seeing  patients in Stanley.

Nile says that they love talking about the benefits of therapy and are quick to return calls. They believe there is always something they can do to help patients. He encourages patients to call them. They want to be a resource for the entire community and to help as much as they can.

Although most insurances are direct access, they do recommend that patients have a referral first before beginning therapy. That way they eliminate the unknown when it comes to billing and costs.

The department is also excited to have an Andago machine for physical therapy. They are currently only using the equipment for residents in the nursing home because of COVID, but once the restrictions are lifted they will be able to offer it for patients who have movement issue related to stroke, neurological problems, paralysis, spinal cord injuries and Parkinson’s disease to name a few.

This machine provides over ground body weight support and gait training, bridging the gap between treadmill and free walking. It follows the patient’s body, picking up on the movements and the way they move and turn. Therapists have the option to change settings so the machine will pick the pathways so the patient can focus just on their steps.

It adjusts completely to the patient using it. That includes how much body weight support is used with the ultimate goal to have the patient not need to use the weight support.

A state of the art machine, it eliminates the fall risk for patients as they walk. It stops and the harnesses will keep the patient up if they do lose their step. It takes the fear factor out of walking for the patient while also eliminating the burden on the therapist. It allows the patient to feel safe while providing them the opportunity to improve their gait.

It also fits through all standard doors in the facility, so there were no modifications needed to use it in the nursing home. Nielsen says it is very user friendly.

MCMC is the only rural facility to have the Andago and the only nursing home. Nielsen says the next closest machines would be at Craig in Denver or in Kansas. The majority of the machines can be found in large rehab facilities on the east or west coast.

Funding for the equipment came from donations, including a significant donation from one family, and the Mountrail County Health Foundation. Hocoma, the company that manufactures it, sent it in expedited shipping without any additional charge.  Nielsen says the Swedish machine, made in Switzerland, was flown over and arrived in March. When it arrived, it rolled out of the box, with PT only having to attach the handles to prepare for use.

Hocoma is watching MCMC and how they are using this machine in a nursing home, helping keep geriatric patients mobile. Nielsen says that it is helping lessen the burden on therapy and the staff as they help residents be as mobile as they can be for as long as they can be.

At the end of October, MCMC will be participating in a webinar with Hocoma, sharing with other doctors and facilities how the machine is being used in Stanley. Pairing with company therapists, they will be sharing the benefits, including reducing the impact on joints with the weightbearing assistance.

New Faces At Mountrail Bethel Home

8 Oct 2020 News

A new leadership team is taking the reins at Mountrail Bethel Home as a new Director of Nursing and Assistant Director of Nursing started their positions on Monday, Sept. 28. A new MDS Coordinator started on Monday, Sept. 21.

Alyssa Zaun is the new Director of Nursing at Mountrail Bethel Home. As DON her responsibilities will including making sure that everything runs smoothly at the nursing home, while following all rules set by the state and making sure the home is staffed to take care of the residents there.

When asked why she was interested in the  position, she said she knew she wanted to advance her career, and this was an opportunity to do that. It will allow her to move to the management/business side of nursing.

She says that she is excited to learn about this side of nursing. As they start everything new with the new leadership positions, it will be a clean slate as they “introduce a new positive attitude into the nursing home” to make it a happy place for staff and residents.

Originally from Minnesota, she has been in North Dakota for a little over three years. For the past two and half years she has worked in the Emergency Room at MCMC, having worked in Minot for a year and as an LPN and CNA at her hometown Nursing Home. Her degree comes from Moorhead State in Moorhead, MN.

She and her husband Zach live by Van Hook. He works for Petro Hunt. They have a ten month old baby boy and she is stepmother to his two daughters, ages 5 and 8.

Jill Zurawski will be the new Assistant Director of Nursing. As ADON, her job is to support Zaun. That means helping in any way she needs. It also allows Zaun to spread responsibilities so that neither is spread too thin by the job. She will take over scheduling for the CNAs and nursing staff.

A nurse for ten years, she attended school in Minnesota. She moved to North Dakota in 2014 with her husband as he worked in the oil field. They started in Watford City and Dickinson before calling Stanley their home. She has been working in the ER at MCMC and also as an MBH nurse for the last two and a half years. She has been cross-trained between the two facilities, which she says has allowed her to get to know more people.

She says that she enjoyed working at Bethel Home, saying it has such a good crew and relationships with the residents they served. It was nice getting to know people and build those connections. As ADON, she says that she would like to see everything run smoothly enough that when employees go home, they are not stressed or worn out. She says that one goal is to set up systems to make it easier for all the nurses, CNAs and residents.

Jill and her husband Rick have two daughters, ages 24 and 25, that live in different parts of the country.

Carissa Sorenson will be the new MDS Coordinator at Bethel Home. MDS stands for Minimum Data Set, a federal system that sets forth the information on level of care for nursing home residents. The information is entered into the forms and creates a payment model.

Sorenson is originally from Minot, but moved to Berthold after the flood. She has worked at Trinity for 26 years, starting at the old St. Joseph’s hospital. She worked through the buyout and transfer and then went to work at Trinity Nursing Home. She was there for fifteen years, which she says was awesome because she found she loves “old people”.

When asked why she was making the change, she said that things she heard about MBH excited her. The team atmosphere and positive changes were things she wanted to do and be part of. She says that bringing a clean slate to the table with all three positions means they will be building together. Teamwork is important on all levels of nursing and she says it will be nice to be part of building a new team.

She says that she is really excited to be at MBH. After 26 years it can be scary to make the change, but she says that she finds herself weirdly at peace with it and ready to take on the challenge.

Carissa’s husband Travis owns a small construction business. They have a daughter age 17, son age 14 and foster son age 14.

All three of these RNs taking on these leadership positions are cross trained to the floor. That means if they are needed, they can go from the office and be a part of the services needed as fast as possible.

MBH Administrator Steph Everett says that she is excited for the growth and camaraderie in the building. These three new leaders are not afraid of growth and taking things to the next level while thinking outside the box.  She says they will be an amazing addition to the current leadership at MBH, as well as working with the other leadership in the building; LaRae Rudolph, DON at the hospital, Lauren Hysjulien, DON at Rosen Place and Janel Borud, DON at the clinic.

The three also share that excitement about the friendship in the facility, where they are not just co-workers but also friends that have each other’s backs and share a passion that has them there for the right reasons. They look forward to growing in their positions and making MBH that much better, saying the residents will thrive because of it.

Hearing Dynamics Will Start in Stanley

29 Sep 2020 News

For patients with hearing aid needs or services in the Stanley area, a new service will be available starting on October 6. Hearing Dynamics, formerly The Hearing Aid Co. of Minot, will be utilizing space at the Mountrail County Medical Center Clinic.

Owner Lisa Risovi brings the ability to test hearing in Stanley. She sells Audibel, a Starkey family, hearing device. She can also repair and clean all brands of hearing aids. She says that she is proud to be selling the Audibel brand hearing aids, a USA made product manufactured in Minneapolis, MN.

Born and raised in rural North Dakota, Risovi started working in the hearing aid business with Arlynn Hefta at The Hearing Aid Company from 2013 to 2016. While he continues to own the location in Devils Lake, he offered her the Minot business. With twenty years of other business experience in customer service, she was excited to take on this new venture. Since taking on the business, she has been looking forward to not only serving customers in Minot, but also expanding that business to rural areas.

The Minot office is located in the Renaissance Center. By also expanding to other communities, she says she believes she can reach people in need in not only Stanley but also the surrounding areas. Risovi says that as a company, they have territories. Her territory is from Rugby to the Montana border and north to the Canadian border.

When asked how she connected with Stanley and MCMC, she says that she is friends with Doctors Joshi and Brewster. In conversations, they discussed the opportunity of adding to the services offered to Stanley area patients. She reached out to MCMC and is now renting space as an independent office in the clinic. She will handle her own billings and insurance if applicable, although most insurances do not cover hearing aids.

She will be in Stanley at the clinic two Tuesdays each month, with October 6 and 27 set for dates next month. She takes patients by appointment only. You can call 701-839-8964 to schedule an appointment.

“Hearing services is something we have been trying to get back into our clinic for quite a while,” says Steph Everett MCMC CEO.  “With the rapport already built with Doctors Joshi and Brewster, we are confident that Lisa will be the perfect fit for our patients and the residents of Mountrail County and we look forward to a long lasting relationship.”

This article is republished with the gracious consent of the Mountrail County Promoter.

Ruland Honored As PA of the Year

27 Aug 2020 News , ,

Mountrail County Medical Center’s Abbey Ruland was named the PA of the Year by the North Dakota Academy of Physician Assistants last week. The award was scheduled to be presented at the organization’s Spring Conference but was cancelled due to the pandemic. It was rescheduled for the Fall meeting, but that too has been cancelled.

Cheryl Ulven of Ray, who served on the board as the head of the scholarship and legislative committees, was in Stanley on Wednesday, Aug. 19 to present the award. Abbey serves on the board as a Public Relations person and had volunteered at their last meeting to help judge the three candidates nominated for the award, unaware she herself was one of the nominees.

Nominations are made by a PA’s peers, physicians, clinic staff or hospital staff. The nominations are then reviewed and voted on by the six officers, eleven committee chairs and three national delegates of the NDAPA Board.

To be nominated, they must be a Physician Assistant who works or resides in North Dakota. The nominator may feel the PA deserves recognition because they provide excellent patient care, are well respected by the medical community as well as patients, and/or are considered to be an asset to the community and the PA profession. They might be someone who has been involved in medical education, dedicated to improving public health by involvement in community education in addition to patient education. They may be involved in humanitarian projects, giving of themselves in service to others above and beyond their normal daily responsibilities.

A nearly unanimous selection by the board, Ruland checks all those boxes based on the letter of nomination by Mountrail County Medical Center CEO Steph Everett.

Abbey started with MCMC in 2013. In 2018 she took a hiatus serving the residents of New Town at the Trinity Clinic. Ulven says that Abbey was her replacement in New Town. MCMC set out  to get Ruland back on staff. The letter says that without her, “the void created in our team without her devoted and kindhearted nature was palatable”. With a provider not fulfilling their contract, they reached out and were lucky enough to get her back in the fall of 2019.

She hit the ground running on her return, stepping back in with her patients, sitting as an active member of the medical staff council, taking Emergency Department call, and filling in for Dr. Longmuir in reviewing and accepting patients for the Swing Bed and Nursing Home program. The letter says, “Abbey is always willing to go the extra mile to make sure our patients are getting excellent community based care”.

She has spearheaded the Quality Improvement process in the Rural Health Clinic. She oversees documentation of care for one doctor, two nurse practitioners and two physicians assistants.

The nationwide opioid epidemic is apparent in our local area, including with patients in and around New Town and the TAT reservation. Although the reservation has built up their capability to treat drug and alcohol use disorders with inpatient treatment centers, there was still a large portion of the population that was not able to get treatment or did not know how to seek treatment appropriately. Seeing this gap in care, Ruland undertook the additional responsibility by completing training to offer Medication Assisted Therapy through the clinic. This is the only PCP driven MAT program within 100 miles.

“Abbey is always willing to go above and beyond the call of duty to serve her patients,” stated Rich  Laksonen, FNP, ENP in the letter. “She’s a pleasure to work with, always willing to lend an ear or a helping hand. Her work ethic, and knowledge of the latest in evidence based care ensure that her patients receive compassionate care close to home, be it through the rural health clinic or emergency department.”

CAH Director and former ER Nurse LaRae Rudolph had this to say. “Abbey has a wide knowledge base and a positive energy and drive in healthcare always going above and beyond using both an individual and/or team effort approach to deliver optimal patient care to whomever is in need.”

Everett said this at the end of the nomination letter. “The bottom line is that Abbey is an esteemed member of our MCMC family and the compassionate community based care we provide here in Stanley is a result of Abbey’s hard work.”

The mission of NDAPA is to promote quality, cost-effective, accessible health care to enhance the health and well-being of the people of North Dakota and to promote the professional and personal development of Physician Assistants.

This article is republished with the gracious consent of the Mountrail County Promoter.

COVID-19 Update July 20th, 2020

20 Jul 2020 News

Through routine testing for our employees, MCHC has identified a staff member who has tested positive for COVID-19.

This case is not related to travel or a known positive contact and the employee is currently quarantined at home per ND Department of Health guidelines. This case correlates with an increase in community spread of COVID-19 in Stanley and Mountrail County. We as a Health Center are advising the residents of Mountrail County to follow the CDC guidelines for COVID-19 now more than ever.

We continue to practice strict infection control measures within MBH and MCMC. Our infection control team has performed the necessary contact tracing in house and families have been notified accordingly. We have instituted immediate repeat testing later this week of MBH, Rosen Place and Centennial residents as well as testing of our entire staff to screen for any additional positive cases.

Given the dynamic nature of COVID-19 and with regard to the nationwide plans to re-open/restart, the face to face visitation inside our nursing home and assisted living are on hold again at this time. We will visit these restrictions on a daily basis and will keep family members posted.

Any questions can be answered by calling:

Tanya Giese, RN – MBH DON – 701– 628-2424—Ext. 105

Amy Littlecreek, LPN – MCHC Infection Control – 701-628-2424—Ext. 104

If you feel you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or would like to be tested please call the Reiarson Rural Health clinic at: 701-628-2505.

July MBH/MCMC Board Meeting Agenda Available

17 Jul 2020 News



Executive Conference Room

Thursday, July 23, 2020

7:00 a.m.

  1. Call to Order – 7:00 a.m.
  • Changes to Agenda
  • Approval of June 25, 2020 Board Meeting Minutes

4.   Visitors/Guests

5.    Financialsattached

6.   Administrator’s Report

7.   Medical Staff

  • Chief of Staff comments

8.   Foundation Report

       9.   Old Business

  • MBH —  Phase III status
  • MBH/MCMC – Strategic Planning
  • MCMC – OR Expansion

      10.   New Business

  • MBH/MCMC – Approve Policy and Procedures Manuals:  None

      11.    Executive Session

MBH/MCMC – Quality:  Tanya Giese, MBH DON. Executive session to discuss patient care and quality issues. The discussion will include references to patient health information that is private and confidential under state and federal law including but not limited to: N.D.C.C. § 23-01.3-01, N.D.C.C. § 23-34-02, N.D.C.C. § 44-04-19.2 and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

We’re closed to the Public.  To call into the meeting please follow:

Call 1-605-472-5291
Access Code:  889325#

Next Board Meeting Date:   Thursday, August 27, 2020, 7:00 am

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