Tim Ballard and Healthier You Conference

Want to Meet A Real Hero?

On January 18th, 2020, Bear Lake Memorial Hospital will be hosting “A Healthier You” conference at the middle school. The conference will be from 1:00p.m.-5:00p.m. The keynote speaker for the event will be Tim Ballard, CEO and founder of Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.), a non-profit organization dedicated to rescuing human trafficking victims.

Mr. Ballard is a former CIA and Homeland Security Special Agent who worked on a national and international level to stop human trafficking.  In 2013, Ballard, not wanting to be limited to only rescuing American children, gave up his secure job and pension in order to create his own company which has enabled him to rescue children and victims of human trafficking all over the world. The O.U.R. highly trained team consists of former navy seals, former intelligence agents, and other operatives with special skill sets.   Large supporters of O.U.R. include Glenn Beck, Tony Robbins, and Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburg Stealers NFL team.

In the past 5 years, O.U.R. has rescued over 3000 victims and assisted in the arrests of more than 1500 traffickers around the world. In October 2014, Operation Underground Railroad, in cooperation with the Columbian government, executed the largest-known human trafficking bust to date.

Ballard has bachelor degrees in Spanish and Political Science, as well as a master’s degree in International Politics.  He is an expert in American History and is the author of several books which include: Slave Stealers: True Accounts of Slave Rescues Then and Now;  The Lincoln Hypothesis; The Washington Hypothesis and The American Covenant– a 2 volume set

Movies and documentaries about Tim Ballard and O.U.R. include:

The Abolitionists, *Operation Toussaint, and The Sound of Freedom, a full-length movie to be released in the spring of 2020 starring Jim Caviezel as Tim Ballard. (A special, free showing of Operation Toussaint will be at the Middle school on Monday, January 6th.  Anyone is welcome)

Bear Lake Memorial Health Care conference committee members feel extremely fortunate that Mr. Ballard, a world-class speaker, has consented to come to our valley and be a part of our conference. Tickets for the conference are $10 and are available at the front desk of the hospital or online at Eventbrite.  Conference presentations include:

1p  Power Through Positive Coping-Brad Nelson, LMSW;

2p  Bystander Intervention-Anya Anthony; P.A.

3p  Healing from Trauma-What Works by Shaun Tobler, MSW, LCSW

4p  Tim Ballard, Keynote Speaker (book signing afterwards)

*You may attend any portion of the conference.  The conference is NOT exclusively for women. Seating is not assigned and limited. TICKETS ARE REQUIRED

 

Influenza is Upon Us

National Influenza Week

December 1-7, 2019

Previous flu vaccination coverage data has shown that few people get vaccinated against influenza after the end of November. The Centers for disease control and its partners want to remind people that even though the holiday season has begun, it is not too late to get a flu vaccine.  As long as flu viruses are spreading and causing illness, vaccination should continue throughout flu season in order to protect as many people as possible against flu. While vaccination is recommended before the end of October, getting vaccinated later can still be beneficial during most seasons for people who have put it off. If you have already been sick with the flu, you can still benefit form vaccination since many different flu viruses spread during flu season and most flu vaccine protects against four different flu viruses.

The Burden of Flu

Flu isn’t a “bad cold” and can result in serious health complications, such as pneumonia, bacterial infections, and can lead to hospitalization.  Flu can sometimes even lead to death.

​_Most people who get flu will recover in several days to less than two weeks, but some people

will develop serious flu complications.

​_People at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women,

people with certain chronic health conditions, and people 65 years of age and older.

​_Anyone who gets the flu can pass it to someone at high risk of severe illness, including children

who are too young to get the vaccine, elderly people, and those with certain chronic illness.

Benefits of Flu Vaccination

​_The flu vaccine is estimated to prevent 5.3 million influenza illnesses.

​_A 2018 study showed that from 2012 to 2015, flu vaccination among adults reduced the risk of

being admitted to an intensive care unit with the flu by 82 percent.

_Studies show that when a pregnant woman is vaccinated, her baby is protected for several

months after birth.

​_ Flu vaccination has been shown to reduce severity of illness in people who get vaccinated but

still get sick.

Getting vaccinated yourself may also protect people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, like babies and young children, older people, and people with certain chronic health conditions.

Diabetes Prevention-5 Tips for Taking Control

 

 

Changing your lifestyle could be a big step toward diabetes prevention-and it’s never too late to start.  Consider these tips:

 

When it comes to type 2 diabetes, (the most common type), prevention is the key.

Diabetes prevention is as basic as eating more healthfully, moving more, and losing a few extra pounds.  It’s never too late to start!  Making a few simple changes in your lifestyle now may help avoid serious health consequences in the future.

Exercise can help you lose weight, lower your blood sugar, and boost your sensitivity to insulin.

Research shows that aerobic exercise and resistance training can help control diabetes. The best benefits come from a program that includes both.

Fiber can help you reduce your risk of diabetes by improving your blood sugar control, lower your risk of heart disease, and promote healthy weight by making you feel full.

It’s not clear why, but studies show that whole grains may reduce your risk of diabetes and help maintain blood sugar levels. Try to make at least half your grains whole grains.

The American Diabetes Association recommends blood glucose screening if:

  • You are over 45
  • You are overweight and have additional risk factors, such as a family history
  • You lead an inactive lifestyle.

Breast Cancer Awareness

healthcare and medicine concept – girl hands holding pink breast cancer awareness ribbon

It’s no secret that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month.  Though we may get tired of seeing breast cancer information all over social media, in magazines, on the internet, etc., being informed and having regular mammograms are the best keys to helping women detect breast cancer early.  Other than skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer among American women.  

What are the symptoms? 

There are different symptoms of breast cancer, and some people have no symptoms at all.   Symptoms can include: 

Any change in the size or the shape of the breast. 

Pain in any area of the breast. 

Nipple discharge other than breast milk (including blood). 

A new lump in the breast or underarm.                                                                                          

How can I lower my risk? 

Risk factors you cannot change include: 

Getting older- the risk increases with age 

Reproductive history- early menstrual periods, menopause after 55 

Having dense breasts-women with dense breasts are higher risk 

Personal or family history (either mother or father’s side) of breast or ovarian cancer     

Risk Factors You Can Change: 

Not being physically active 

Being overweight or obese after menopause 

Taking hormones (those that contain both estrogen and progesterone) taken during menopause when taken for more than 5 years. 

Reproductive history- Having the first pregnancy after 30, not breastfeeding, and never having a full-term pregnancy. 

Drinking alcohol 

 

Please make your mammogram appointment today by calling 208-847-1630.

Vaccines Save Lives 

It’s hard to fully appreciate how vaccines have changed the world of modern medicine. The fact is, vaccines have helped save millions and millions of lives. On a global scale, health organizations work diligently to distribute vaccines to poorer countries. Thanks to increased access to the measles vaccine internationally, the annual death toll from this disease fell from almost 600,000 in 2000 to just 122,000 in 2012.
However, vaccine-preventable diseases, such as measles, mumps, and whooping cough, are still a threat. They continue to infect U.S. children, resulting in hospitalizations and deaths every year. Outbreaks of preventable diseases occur when many parents decide not to vaccinate their children. In the year 2000, the endemic spread of measles was considered to be eliminated in the United States but is now on the rise. If children are not vaccinated, they can spread disease to other children who are too young to be vaccinated or to people with weakened immune systems, such as transplant recipients and people with cancer. When we vaccinate children, we not only protect other children, but family members, friends, and grandparents.
Immunizations are not just for children. Protection from some childhood vaccines can wear off over time. You may be at risk because of your age, health, or lifestyle. All adults need immunizations to help prevent them from getting and spreading serious diseases. For instance, all adults need a seasonal flu vaccine every year. A study done by the CDC showed that the influenza vaccine saved 40,000 lives from flu-related deaths during the nine-year period from 2005-2014. Every adult should get the Tdap vaccine once if they did not receive it as an adolescent to protect against pertussis (whooping cough), and then a tetanus/diptheria booster shot every 10 years. You should talk with your doctor if you feel you should be exempt from these vaccinations.
A recurrence in the rise of outbreaks of infectious diseases in the U.S., such as measles, can be traced to those traveling to the U.S. from other countries, but the CDC feels the real culprit is misinformation about vaccines. Anti-vaxxers take advantage of social media and the internet to stoke public resistance to vaccines. The World Health organization named vaccine hesitancy among the top 10 threats to global health in 2019. To help spread this message and to counter misinformation, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine created a website (see below) displaying overwhelming evidence that vaccines are safe. The American Medical Association sent a letter to top executives at Amazon, Facebook, Google, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube urging them to do more to stem the proliferation of health-related misinformation.
For credible information about the safety of vaccines, talk to your doctor or visit:
www.cdc.gov  or sites.nationalacademies.org/BasedOnScience/vaccines-are-safe/

BLMH is Top 20 in the Nation

Bear Lake Memorial Hospital Named as 2019 Top 100 Critical Access Hospital

 Bear Lake Memorial Hospital in Montpelier, ID scored in the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals (CAH) in the United States by iVantage Health Analytics and The Chartis Center for Rural Health. This recognition is regarded as one of the industry’s most significant designations of performance excellence. Bear Lake Memorial is one of over 1300 Critical Access Hospitals surveyed nationally. This is the third year in a row the hospital has received this recognition additionally in 2018 they ranked as a Top 20 CAH by the National Rural Health Association.

 

“In an era of increased complexity and uncertainty, Top 100 hospitals have established themselves as a bellwether for rural provider performance,” said Michael Topchik, National Leader of The Chartis Center for Rural Health. “Top 100 status is a real indicator of how proactive these hospitals are when it comes to pushing for performance improvement in areas such as quality, outcomes, patient safety, market share and finance.”

 

Measurements like these reinforce Bear Lake Memorial’s high standards of quality healthcare and their vision of being most caring to the visitors and residents of the Bear Lake Valley and surrounding areas.

 

 

Summer Safety 101

Bear Lake winters can be long and hard.  The excitement of spring and summer brings with it a desire to get out of the house and be more active.  By following a few main safety tips, summer can be an enjoyable, safe time.

Stay Hydrated.

The standard recommendation is to drink 6-8 glasses of water a day.  If you spend a fair amount of time in the sun, you may want to drink even more to avoid dehydration.  Don’t just depend on your body to tell you when you’re thirsty because as you age, you become less aware of your thirst.  Be proactive in staying hydrated. Sodas, coffee, and especially alcohol won’t work as good alternatives for hydration.  Water, sports drinks, and juice are the best.

Don’t Stay Out for Too Long.

If you are in extreme heat, you should keep your plans for outdoor activities reasonably short. Do not spend all day in the sun. After a couple of hours, plan to take a break.  You don’t always feel the effects of the sun in the exact moment, but it can build to something dangerous if you aren’t careful how much time you spend outside on hot days.

Keep Sunscreen Where It’s Readily Accessible So That You Will Remember to Use It.

If you carry a bag or purse, keep your sunscreen in it at all times.  If you don’t, stick your sunscreen in your care or anywhere else you can think of where you will be likely to have it when you need it.  You will need to reapply if you get wet,

sweat, or stay outdoors for a reasonable amount of time.

Check the Side Effects of Your Prescriptions.

Some medications make people more sensitive to the sun.  Make sure you know if your prescriptions mean you need to take extra precautions.  Some common prescriptions you will need to be aware of that can increase sun sensitivity are: Antibiotics such as Doxycycline, Tetracycline, and Ciprofloxacin; Antidepressants such as Doxepin and other tricyclics: Antihistamines; some blood pressure drugs such as Hydrochlorothiazide, Aldactazide, and Diltiazem; many cholesterol drugs, diuretics, chemotherapy drugs, and NSAIDS such as ibuprofen. (This is not a comprehensive list.  Check with your doctor about your medications.)

Use Air Conditioning If You Have It

Making sure you are comfortable in your home is worth the price of air conditioning. If you don’t have it, the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program may help if the cost is prohibitive.

2019 Top 100 Critical Access Hospital

Bear Lake Memorial Hospital in Montpelier, ID scored in the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals (CAH) in the United States by iVantage Health Analytics and The Chartis Center for Rural Health. This recognition is regarded as one of the industry’s most significant designations of performance excellence. Bear Lake Memorial is one of over 1300 Critical Access Hospitals surveyed nationally. This is the third year in a row the hospital has received this recognition additionally in 2018 they ranked as a Top 20 CAH by the National Rural Health Association.

“In an era of increased complexity and uncertainty, Top 100 hospitals have established themselves as a bellwether for rural provider performance,” said Michael Topchik, National Leader of The Chartis Center for Rural Health. “Top 100 status is a real indicator of how proactive these hospitals are when it comes to pushing for performance improvement in areas such as quality, outcomes, patient safety, market share and finance.”

Measurements like these reinforce Bear Lake Memorial’s high standards of quality healthcare and their vision of being most caring to the visitors and residents of the Bear Lake Valley and surrounding areas.

The Schmidts’ – Leaving a Legacy

The Schmidt’s love Bear Lake and have spent summers on the shores since they were first married. Liz was diagnosed with a kidney disease and while visiting Bear Lake they travelled to Logan 3x a week for dialysis, consuming much of their energy and vacation time.

The Schmidt’s approached BLMH’s Administrator at the time, Rod Jacobson, about what it would take to establish the life-saving treatment at the smaller county-owned facility. After doing some research, Rod learned a new Dialysis Center would cost in excess of $500,000, an amount way beyond the Hospital’s ability to finance. When Ted and Liz have told the bad news their response was “could you do it if money was not the issue?”.  After careful consideration and in light of the fact that several other Bear Lake residents were travelling long distances for dialysis, the Hospital Board of Trustees authorized the endeavor.

Within a year, Bear Lake Memorial Hospital had a fully functioning Dialysis Center and Liz Schmidt received her summer dialysis treatments at BLMH for several years. Since the beginning of the Dialysis Center literally, hundreds of patients have had their lifesaving treatments performed counting up to over 130,000 hours in the last 13 years. Even after Liz’s passing, Ted continues to share their story and show support to this community. All of this made possible in one of the smallest and most caring dialysis center in the country… at the Bear Lake Memorial’s Dialysis Center, Ted and Liz Schmidt made it a reality.

Want to share your story with us? Please call 208-847-0963 or email Julie.Nelson@blmhospital.com

Award Winning Home Health in Patient Satisfaction

Bear Lake Memorial Hospital’s Home Health earns 2018 SHPBestTM “Premier Performer” Patient Satisfaction Award 

 Montpelier, IDBear Lake Memorial Hospital’s Home Health has been recognized by Strategic Healthcare Programs (SHP) as a “Premier Performer” for achieving an overall patient satisfaction score that ranked in the top 5% of all eligible SHP clients for the 2018 calendar year.

The annual SHPBest™ award program was created to acknowledge home health agencies that consistently provide high-quality service to their patients. The 2018 award recipients were determined by reviewing and ranking the overall satisfaction score for more than 2,500 home health providers. With the largest HHCAHPS benchmark in the nation, SHP is in a unique position to identify and recognize organizations that have made patient satisfaction a priority and have been rewarded for their efforts with high marks on the HHCAHPS survey.

“SHP is proud to present the SHPBest awards to our top-performing customers. We commend these organizations for their continuous focus on delivering the highest quality of care to their patients”, said Rob Paulsson, President of SHP.

Strategic Healthcare Programs (SHP) is a leader in data analytics and benchmarking that drive daily clinical and operational decisions. Our solutions bring real-time data to post-acute providers, hospitals, and ACOs to better coordinate quality care and improve patient outcomes. Since 1996, SHP has helped more than 7,000 organizations nationwide raise the bar for healthcare performance.

 “Our home health team is dedicated to providing the best environment for employees and patients to promote healing at home,” says Home Health Director Shauna Dawes, “and this recognition validates the level of care and compassion we offer.  Our team couldn’t be more proud to represent Bear Lake Memorial Hospital in leading satisfaction through Home Health services.”

Read more about the SHPBest awards program, including methodology and award recipient lists at https://www.shpdata.com/home-health/shpbest-hhcahps.

 

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