Category Archives: Impact

Open House to review Health Services Plan on October 22

Community Health Open House to review HCMC’s Health Services Plan and Community Needs Assessment

How does Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) address the health care needs of its community? The results of a new community health needs assessment and information about the programs and partnerships created to address those needs will be available for review at a Community Health Open House on Tuesday, October 22 from 4:30 to 6:30 PM at Whittier Clinic, 2810 Nicollet Ave. in Minneapolis.

2013 invite for blog 72

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Program trains paramedics for work with law enforcement

Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC), in partnership with the Meeker County Sheriff’s Office, recently formed the Community Service Officer-Paramedic (CSO-P) program, an all-volunteer program that trains experienced, certified paramedics to be non-sworn law enforcement Community Service Officers.  The Community Service Officer-Paramedic program will complement the current Emergency Medical Services (EMS) available to citizens of Meeker County. Continue reading

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HCMC NETWORK FEATURE: Medical training for law enforcement

This gallery contains 40 photos.

A motor vehicle collision (MVC) on a snowy rural highway or a remote farm accident.  A hostile scene, unsafe for ambulance personnel to enter.  A violent and out-of-control individual who may be sick, intoxicated, or in autistic crisis.  A call … Continue reading

Sim Center revolutionizes medical education

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Join us for an Open House from 2-4 PM on Monday, January 7

Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC), already a nationally recognized teaching hospital, is opening a brand new, state-of-the art medical simulation facility. The Interdisciplinary Simulation and Education Center (“Sim Center”), opening January 7, 2013, will support education programs that train more than 20,000 caregivers each year.

Located in the lower level of the state’s first Level I Trauma Center, the 10,000 square foot  Sim Center area provides a safe environment for health care professionals to practice real-life medical situations and procedures in rooms with the equipment found in operating rooms, emergency departments or other treatment areas – including the electronic health record. Continue reading

HCMC NETWORK FEATURE: New Center for Hyperbaric Medicine

A new era has begun with the opening of the Center for Hyperbaric Medicine at HCMC (Photo 1).  From early plans and funding applications, through installation of a multiplace hyperbaric chamber and construction of a brand new hyperbaric medicine suite, a dedicated and multifaceted team on two continents has worked to make this state-of-the-art facility a reality.

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HCMC was the first and, from 1964 to 2008, the only provider of hyperbaric oxygen therapy to Minnesota and the region.  HCMC remains the only facility that provides emergency hyperbaric oxygen treatments 24/7 for critical patients with carbon monoxide poisoning, life- and limb-threatening infections, decompression sickness, and arterial gas embolism while also providing evidence-based care for non-emergency patients with radiation injury, non-healing wounds from diabetes, and other conditions (Photos 2 and 3). Hyperbaric medicine treatments at HCMC have increased annually as hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been shown effective for a growing number of chronic medical conditions.  A total of 3335 hyperbaric treatments were administered in 2011, including 135 emergency treatments and 3200 scheduled (non-emergent) treatments. Continue reading

HCMC NETWORK FEATURE: Innovative HCMC/Ridgewater program trains paramedics for rural and metro Minnesota

Where do paramedic students get to train in the busiest Emergency Department in Minnesota, in a nationally renowned Burn Center, in Level I Trauma Center operating rooms, and diverse clinical departments in both metro and greater Minnesota medical centers (Photos 1-3)?  Where do they train with experienced paramedics in both rural and metro ambulance services (Photo 4)?  And where are didactic and skills training supplemented by simulation training and field training in vehicle extrication and rappelling (Photos 5- 8)?  HCMC Emergency and Critical Care Education has partnered with Ridgewater College, with campuses in Willmar and Hutchinson, to create a one-of-a-kind paramedic program that offers the best of rural and metro Minnesota settings for pre-hospital and hospital-based clinical training, as well as comprehensive classroom and skills training.   With its 5th class recently graduated, the HCMC/Ridgewater paramedic program has a unique history of innovation and collaboration, high graduation rates, national board pass rates and employment rates, and a reputation for excellence.  To date, the program has graduated nearly 140 paramedics who have gone on to work with rural, urban and suburban ambulance services across Minnesota, from Hibbing to Mankato, Willmar and Hutchinson to Redwing, as well as the metro area.

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In the fall of 2005, metro and rural ambulance services in greater Minnesota needed paramedics and high-quality local training programs.  Bev Hartzburg (Willmar Ambulance Service and Ridgewater College), Mike Boehme (Dean of Instruction, Ridgewater College), Charlie Moen (Director of EMS Education, HCMC), and Brian Mahoney (Medical Director, Hennepin EMS) set about to develop an accredited paramedic program that would draw on unique facilities and expert personnel at HCMC and Ridgewater College and build a collaborative program that would equip students for paramedicine practice in both rural and urban Minnesota.   The innovative program was launched in March 2007, graduating its first class of 28 paramedics in 2008.

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HCMC’s Center for Hyperbaric Medicine opens in June

HCMC will open the new Center for Hyperbaric Medicine, which includes a 60-ton hyperbaric chamber, on hospital’s main campus in downtown Minneapolis in mid-June. The 48-foot long chamber, which arrived in sections last November, replaces the current 49-year-old hyperbaric chamber located two blocks away.

HCMC will continue to have the only multi-chamber hyperbaric oxygen facility in the region that’s used for 24/7 emergency treatment of critically ill patients: usually victims of carbon monoxide exposure or life-threatening infections, but also cerebral gas embolism and decompression sickness (“the bends”).

“This new facility is one of the most thoughtfully designed multiplace chamber ensembles in the world for delivering critical care,” says Dr. Cheryl Adkinson, Medical Director of the Center for Hyperbaric Medicine. “From monitoring to communication, environmental control, and gas delivery systems – the arrangement and the individual capabilities of the three connecting chambers will provide maximum flexibility to simultaneously manage multiple combinations of critically ill and stable, scheduled patients.”

In addition to being a life-saving emergency treatment for some conditions, hyperbaric oxygen therapy is also used to treat radiation injuries, diabetic ulcers, and other chronic wounds.

“As our population ages and becomes more obese,  more and more people are suffering from diabetes and chronic diabetic foot ulcers” explains Dr. Adkinson. “Diabetes damages blood vessels, leading to low tissue oxygen levels and poor healing; however, by delivering high levels of oxygen to tissues of the body, many of these wounds can heal, preventing the painful and life-changing complications of amputation.”

The $10.9 million project was paid for by a combination of county, state, federal and hospital funding sources.  It included construction of a 10,278-square foot addition to the hospital’s main campus on 7th Street in Minneapolis. Patients from Minnesota, North and South Dakota, Western Wisconsin and the Canadian border are referred to HCMC for hyperbaric oxygen treatment. The facility has three multiple-person chambers as well as a single monoplace chamber.

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HCMC is a leader in trauma and critical care medicine. The Level I Adult Trauma Center and Level I Pediatric Trauma Center opened a completely renovated Burn Center last fall, one of only two critical care burn centers in Minnesota verified by the American Burn Association (ABA) and the American College of Surgeons (ACS).  Over the past five years, all adult intensive care units have been relocated and renovated within the downtown facility and this year the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit will be renovated.

More information about the construction of the new hyperbaric chamber facility