Every Minnesotan is familiar with piling on coats, hats, mittens and other clothing to stay protected from the elements during the winter months. So far this year HCMC has treated at least 78 patients with complications from hypothermia – literally meaning “low (body) temperature.” No one plans to become hypothermic; car trouble, walking home from a party, or a slip and fall on the ice are just a few ways people inadvertently get over-exposed to the harsh cold.
HCMC nurse returns to active duty; asks fellow officers, colleagues to perform commissioning ceremony in Emergency Department
Melissa Conner, RN, is returning to active military duty and on Tuesday, December 3, 2013, she got an official sendoff from her colleagues in Hennepin County Medical Center’s (HCMC) emergency department.
“Unfortunately for us one of our brightest nurses has decided to follow her dream and return to active duty Air Force in the Nurse Corps,” explains Alvin Sangma, RN, one of the Clinical Care Supervisor in HCMC’s Emergency Department, where Melissa Conner has worked since April. “But we’re awfully proud of her!” Continue reading
Chad Richardson, MD, was recently named Director of Trauma Services at Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC). He has been serving as Assistant Director since 2008 under his predecessor Dr. Arthur Ney, who chose to step down after 24 years as Director of Trauma Services. Dr. Ney, who developed HCMC’s successful trauma program (which achieved the state’s first Level I Trauma verification) remains an active trauma and general surgeon at HCMC.
“Dr. Richardson is well-prepared to lead us in the years ahead,” explains Dr. Mark Odland, Chief of Surgery at HCMC. “He’s an outstanding surgeon who is focused on delivering the best patient care possible for our trauma patients.”
Originally from Anoka, MN, Dr. Richardson graduated from the University of Minnesota Medical School and completed his residency training in surgery at HCMC. He received a fellowship in surgical critical care at HCMC and a fellowship in Renal Transplant at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden.
Hennepin County Medical Center is a comprehensive academic medical center and public teaching hospital with the largest emergency department in the state. HCMC’s was the first hospital in Minnesota to achieve Level I Trauma Verification status, and in 2014 it will mark its 25th year as a Level I Trauma Center. In addition to the 462-bed acute care hospital and primary care and specialty clinics located in downtown Minneapolis, Hennepin offers primary care clinics in Minneapolis and suburban Hennepin County.
Under the Affordable Care Act, all Americans will have access to affordable health insurance options, including low-cost and free plans. A new insurance exchange called MNsure is now up and running for Minnesotans without insurance to shop for and select a health plan. Open enrollment for MNsure continues through March 31, 2014 with coverage starting as soon as January 1, 2014.
This week Hennepin County Medical Center and Hennepin County will co-host a free 3-day enrollment event to assist people with the enrollment process on the MNsure website, www.MNsure.org.
No appointment needed. Patients are invited to come browse the MNsure website to find a health plan that fits your budget and meets their needs. With HCMC’s free in-person assistance, it’s even easier for patients to find, compare, and buy health coverage through MNsure.
“Of course our patients can enroll from the comfort of their own homes,” explains Anthony Yanni, revenue cycle project consultant, who has led the MNsure communications project at HCMC, “but we want them to know that we’re here to help if needed. That’s why we’re offering this opportunity to ask questions and provide hands-on assistance with enrollment.”
HCMC-Hennepin County MNsure Enrollment Event
Wednesday, November 20-Friday, November 22
9 am-12 pm
Medical Library Services
Red Building, Level 2 Skyway
730 S. 8th St.
Minneapolis, MN 55415
Rick Schacht (pronounced “shocked”) got the shock of his life on Thursday, October 3 just as he was beginning his tie-breaking game at the 2013 US OPEN Racquetball Championships in Minneapolis last month.
“I was berating myself because I just couldn’t seem to focus,” he recalls. “I remember being in the service box and feeling lightheaded. I said to myself, ‘Good grief, you let yourself get out of shape, and now you’re going to faint.”
But Schacht didn’t faint, he died. Continue reading
Dr. Marjorie Hogan, pediatrician at Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC), is one of the thousands of members of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) who is concerned about the amount of time kids are spending on the phone, watching TV, and playing video games.
Excessive media use has been associated with obesity, lack of sleep, school problems, aggression and other behavior issues. A recent study shows that the average 8- to 10-year-old spends nearly 8 hours a day with different media, and older children and teens spend more than 11 hours per day. Kids who have a TV in their bedroom spend more time with media. About 75 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds own cell phones, and nearly all teenagers use text messaging.
“This new technology is very interesting and exciting, but it shouldn’t replace healthy activities,” explains Dr. Hogan. “Sleep, for example, is so important to growing children. But many kids are keeping their cell phones next to them while they are in bed so that they don’t miss a text or a Facebook post. These things can wait until morning — after they’ve gotten a good night’s sleep.”
Dr. Hogan was one of the co-authors of the AAP policy entitled “Children, Adolescents and the Media,” which explains the importance of having a healthy “media diet.”
“A healthy approach to children’s media use should both minimize potential health risks and foster appropriate and positive media use—in other words, it should promote a healthy ‘media diet’,” said Dr. Hogan. “Parents, educators and pediatricians should participate in media education, which means teaching children and adolescents how to make good choices in their media consumption.”
While media by itself is not the leading cause of any health problem in the U.S., it can contribute to numerous health risks. At the same time, kids can learn many positive things from pro-social media.
The AAP policy statement offers recommendations for parents:
- Parents can model effective “media diets” to help their children learn to be selective and healthy in what they consume. Take an active role in children’s media education by co-viewing programs with them and discussing values.
- Make a media use plan, including mealtime and bedtime curfews for media devices. Screens should be kept out of kids’ bedrooms.
- Limit entertainment screen time to less than one or two hours per day; in children under 2, discourage screen media exposure.
Dr. Hogan also recommends that parents monitor what their children are communicating on their social media sites. ”And if you have a concern, talk to your child about it and explain what your family’s boundaries — and values — are when it comes to sharing information,” said Dr. Hogan.
More information for parents on creating a family media use plan is available on HealthyChildren.org.
To see Dr. Hogan’s statements on creating a media use plan, go to http://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/aap-press-room-media-center/Pages/Family-Media-Use-Plan.aspx
Glow sticks, bracelets, and necklaces have become part of the Halloween experience. These toys are cheap, portable, and emit a colorful glow making them perfect to increase visibility of children while trick or treating.
A glow stick consists of a small, fragile plastic or glass vial containing a chemical activator housed inside a larger plastic vial containing the dye solution. When the inactivated glow stick is bent, the glass vial breaks allowing the previously separated chemicals to mix. The resulting chemical reaction causes a non-heat generating light emission. While these chemicals are not very poisonous, the chemicals can irritate the skin and eyes. If swallowed, the chemicals can cause a burning feeling.
If a child inadvertently breaks or chews through a glow stick or there are other questions regarding potential poisoning, call the Minnesota Poison Control System at 1-800-222-1222 for treatment recommendations. Information about the Minnesota Poison Control System can be found at www.mnpoison.org.
The Minnesota Poison Control System is a cooperative effort between the Minnesota Department of Health and Hennepin Regional Poison Center. Hennepin Regional Poison Center is designated by the Minnesota Department of Health to provide poison information and consultative services to the entire State of Minnesota.