Hennepin Healthcare in the News
View recent medical stories from local and national media featuring experts from Hennepin Healthcare.

Hennepin County Medical Center set to get a $140M face lift
Star Tribune, 12/23/22
The Hennepin County Medical Center campus in downtown Minneapolis is getting a makeover that will take about eight years and renovate about three of its 10 blocks, county officials announced this week.

Minnesota workers brave cold, blizzard conditions
Star Tribune, 12/23/22
Hennepin Healthcare workers continued to serve patients at clinics and the hospital. Since Sunday, the emergency department had treated 45 patients with “cold weather exposure concerns, including frostbite and hypothermia,” spokeswoman Christine Hill said.

Flu hospitalizations decline in Minnesota, but COVID-19 persists
Star Tribune, 12/22/22
“It’s not unprecedented to have two separate increases,” said Peter Bodurtha, a data scientist at Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute, a partner in the consortium. “It really depends on what happens the rest of the year. But being this far ahead of the curve this early, with this much of the season left, that’s not a good position to be in.”

Grandfather offers warning after suffering frostbite: “I had made a mistake”
WCCO 4, 12/22/22
Dr. Tom Masters says frostbite can settle in quickly during extreme cold. “Our bodies are really good about telling us if something’s going wrong, so when it starts to hurt that’s when you should start to raise your antenna,” Masters said.

Firefighters spread holiday cheer
WCCO 4, 12/22/22
There was a very special delivery Thursday at Hennepin HealthCare’s burn center. Firefighters stopped by the spread some holiday cheer to patients spending their Christmas there.

St. Anthony: Medical professions in Minnesota need more people of color in their ranks
Star Tribune, 12/22/22

Dr. Brandi Gorden Klukas and nurse Tykia Hess overcame tremendous obstacles to become medical professionals. And the medical community needs more people like them.

“Patients are more likely to have a trusted relationship with a provider when they deal with someone who looks like them,” said Tonya Jackman Hampton, human resources chief at Hennepin Healthcare. “We try to build everyone’s cultural competency. To relate to individuals, provider or patient, and to be open and respectful. And remain humble in the journey.”

Doctors urge precautions in bitter cold: “You can lose fingertips. You can lose toes – or worse.”
CCX Media, 12/22/22
“The wind chill right now is horrible. So, you can get frostbite within five minutes,” said Hennepin Healthcare emergency room physician Dr. Thomas Masters. Dr. Masters says several people were admitted over the last couple weeks because of frostbite.

Blizzard prep: 5 tips to stay warm, be smart as weather worsens
MPR, 12/21/22
“Windchill impacts our ability to withstand frostbite. So the more severe the wind chill, the more likely you are to get frostbite. And then, if your clothes get damp, your socks or your gloves get damp, that also lowers your ability to avoid frostbite,” Dr. Thomas Masters said. “It can happen in a matter of minutes, depending on the conditions and the amount of exposed skin that one has.”

Hennepin County Medical Center plans major hospital overhaul
Axios Twin Cities, 12/21/22
“When we build the new inpatient tower, [we will have] the ability to take down some of those (old) buildings, repurpose (them) and really re-energize that side of Minneapolis,” said Hennepin Healthcare CEO Jennifer DeCubellis.

Frostbite patient tells how the cold landed him in the Hennepin Healthcare Burn Unit
Star Tribune, 12/20/22
Hennepin Healthcare officials are expecting to see more frostbite cases this week — they have had 13 already — as temperatures sink below zero and windchill values, or what air feels like to exposed skin, drop dangerously low. Dr. Jim Miner, chair of emergency medicine at the downtown hospital, said to wear lots of layers and cover the head, ears, fingers and toes — the parts of the body that can freeze quickly.

Research: Black, Hispanic and Asian Minnesotans under 65 more likely to be vaccinated against COVID-19 — and more likely to die of it
MinnPost, 12/19/22
“We were seeing large populations of people of color in our ICUs (Intensive Care Units), having the harder time with COVID,” said Nneka Sederstrom, the chief health equity officer for Hennepin Healthcare.

Hennepin Healthcare’s pediatric mobile unit brings care directly to families
KSTP 5, 12/19/22
“There was a decline in the rate of childhood immunizations, unfortunately, and when our patients are not protected then our community is not protected,” Amy Green, a nurse practitioner with Hennepin Healthcare, said.

As some hospitals roll out MyChart charges, MN hospitals appear to hold back
KARE 11, 12/19/22
“We at Hennepin do not charge for messages that are direct communications between the patients and the providers,” Hennepin Healthcare physician and chief health information officer Dr. Deepti Pandita said. “What we do charge for is certain visit types that could be sort of administered through the patient portal called E-visits.”

Minnesota opioid treatment clinics overwhelmed as needs rise, staffs shrink
MPR, 12/19/22
“On a typical day, a counselor will interact with a nurse, a supervisor, a doctor, they’ll collect urine toxicology multiple times and send it to the lab.  [If] their patient needs to go to the primary care clinic … they’re coordinating primary care follow up,” said Dr. Charles Reznikoff, addiction medicine physician at Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis. “It’s very interdisciplinary.”

What rising COVID-19, flu and RSV infections mean for students this winter
The Minnesota Daily, 12/12/22
There is currently a higher volume of serious RSV infections than in recent years, said Stacene Maroushek, a pediatrician at Hennepin County Health Center in Minneapolis and assistant professor in the University’s Department of Pediatrics.

MDH, Hennepin Healthcare launch first-of-its-kind pain treatment map
KSTP 5, 12/9/22
“This is critical that people have this knowledge,” said Dr. Arti Prasad, the director of NO PAIN MN (Non-Opioid Pain Alleviation Information Network) and Hennepin Healthcare chief strategic development officer.

It took two years to create the map. Dr. Prasad worked with Hennepin Healthcare Chiropractor Dr. Rick Printon. He collaborates with physical therapists and acupuncturists to help patients with chronic pain.

“It’s really a combination of care,” said Dr. Printon, NO PAIN MN Co-director. “We’re the non-medication option and we can put one, two, three, four different therapies with the patients to help them reduce their pain.”

“Tripledemic” causes Hennepin Healthcare to expand hours
CCX Media, 12/8/22
“We definitely have a backlog certainly in our emergency room,” said Natalie Ikeman, physician assistant with Hennepin Healthcare. “That’s why the clinics have opened extra visits for patients to be able to be seen, especially these pediatric patients since that is such a high-risk population.”

Numerous respiratory viruses are keeping the pressure on Minnesota hospitals
Star Tribune, 12/8/22
People who are sick can reduce viral spread by staying home and particularly avoiding the very old and the very young, said Dr. Ashley Strobel, an emergency medicine physician at Hennepin Healthcare who specializes in pediatrics.

Minnesota pharmacies see children’s medication shortage during early flu surge
KSTP 5, 12/8/22
“It’s a very early start to our respiratory viral season, particularly for influenza. It’s come much earlier than we expected,” said Dr. Leslie King-Schultz, a pediatrician at Hennepin Healthcare’s Brooklyn Park clinic.

MMA, healthcare systems offer advice to families before holiday season
MMA News, 12/1/22
On November 21, the MMA and several Minnesota healthcare systems held a press conference in downtown Minneapolis to sound the alarm ahead of the holiday season, to raise awareness about the spike in cases of Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and other respiratory illnesses.

Fentanyl exposures in children spike, public health official sounds alarm: “Lock up your drugs”
FOX 9, 11/29/22
“We now regularly see cases of toddlers or small children reversed with Narcan after they’ve been poisoned. And that is something that I used to not see in my practice,” Dr. Jon Cole told FOX 9.

New approaches to managing diabetes
MPR, 11/30/22
Dr. Iesha A. Galloway-Gilliam is an internal medicine physician and obesity medicine director of the Comprehensive Weight

Health officials: RSV, flu cases spike ahead of holidays
CCX Media, 11/22/22
“We’re all working extra hours and pulling extra shifts trying to help out. But we’re still having difficulty overcoming the patient volumes,” explained Dr. Ashley Strobel, Emergency Pediatrician at Hennepin Healthcare.

Healthcare system stresses as sicknesses rise throughout Minnesota
FOX 9, 11/21/22
“The advice is, you know, preventive – washing your hands, wearing your mask, staying at home when you’re sick,” said Dr. Stacene Maroushek, with Hennepin Healthcare pediatric infectious disease.

“RSV affects those who are less than two years old the most, but we also have all the other viruses,” said Dr. Ashley Strobel, FACEP, FAAP, emergency physician, with Hennepin Healthcare. “I’ve seen Rhino and Enterovirus 17, influenza viruses – these viruses do not need a name; they are virus.”

As respiratory viruses spike, health care systems ask Minnesotans to reduce strain on providers
MPR, 11/21/22
“Please have mercy on us,” said Dr. Ashley Strobel, emergency physician at Hennepin Healthcare. “We are working very hard and doing our absolute best. We are parents just like you. We are Minnesotans just like you and we want to take care of you.”

Minnesota medical community addresses spike in child respiratory illnesses ahead of holiday season 
WCCO 4, 11/21/22
“Please have mercy on us. We are working very hard and doing our very best. We are parents too, just like you,” said Ashley Strobel, with Hennepin Healthcare.

Minnesota healthcare systems sounding the alarm on RSV
KARE 11, 11/21/22
“In my 25 years of being a pediatrician, I’ve never seen anything like this,” said pediatric infectious disease specialist Stacene Maroushek, MD with Hennepin Healthcare, in a statement. “I have seen families who just aren’t getting a break. They have one viral illness after another. And now there’s the secondary effect of ear infections and pneumonia that are prompting amoxicillin shortages.”

Health officials offer advice, urge precautions during holidays as viral illnesses rise
KSTP 5, 11/21/22
“We want to help everyone out, we want to have space to help everyone out and please have mercy on us, we are working very hard and doing our absolute best, we are parents just like you, we are Minnesotans just like you and we want to take care of you,” Dr. Ashley Strobel, an emergency and pediatric physician at Hennepin Healthcare, said.

Clogged hospitals prompt warnings from Minnesota doctors
Star Tribune, 11/21/22
The doctors walked a fine line in their messaging Monday, not wanting to discourage parents from bringing in children needing hospital-level care.

Parents should probably consult with their local pediatricians first, said Dr. Ashley Strobel, an emergency physician at Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis, which hosted the news conference.

But she said parents should bring in children who are dehydrated (often exhibited by dry diapers), have fevers above 100.4 degrees for five or more days or are struggling to breathe so much that their ribs can be seen as they inhale or “their nostrils are flaring out and in, kind of like that bull that you see on cartoons, back in the day of Looney Tunes.”

Amoxicillin shortage impacting parents of sick kids
KARE 11, 11/18/22
“Bacterial infections — like an ear infection, strep throat, pneumonia — can pop up while a child is dealing with a virus like RSV or influenza,” Hennepin Healthcare pediatric infectious disease specialist Dr. Stacene Maroushek explained.

Viruses suppressed during COVID-19 pandemic now prevalent among children
CCX Media, 11/14/22
“Every three to four weeks we’re seeing these kids get a new infection, especially those that are in school and in daycare,” said Dr. Stacene Maroushek, a pediatric infectious disease specialist from Hennepin Healthcare. “And of course they infect their parents, parents have to miss work, kids are missing school, the parents are really worried like ‘they’ve been sick all the time,’ so they’re coming into the doctor a little more often as well. And it’s just a bad post-Covid resurgence of virus.”

Plea from a trauma nurse: Stay away from me.
Star Tribune, 11/13/22
We want every biker in a helmet, every child in a car seat/booster, every passenger in every vehicle wearing a seat belt. Every time. Kelly Maynard is a pediatric nurse at Hennepin County Medical Center and a part-time copy editor at the Star Tribune.

Long wait times at hospitals, clinics and emergency rooms during spike of flu and RSV cases
KARE 11, 11/10/22
“There’s an overwhelming demand to get seen,” Hennepin Healthcare Pediatrician Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian said.

Assaults against staff surge at Minnesota hospitals: “It seems like it’s inevitable”
Star Tribune, 11/8/22
The intolerance of the COVID-19 era has made visitors and relatives more likely to make threats, but physical conflicts mostly involve confused or upset patients, said Josh Gramling, HCMC’s director of occupational health and wellness.

Special session needed on care gap
Star Tribune, 11/5/22
Hennepin Healthcare’s Jennifer DeCubellis is worried about capacity, too, though her metro medical center generally has adults waiting for placement. “We’ve got an alarming problem. It’s not just a kid’s issue. It’s adults as well,” she said.

An endless cycle of grief: Surge in shootings taking toll on ER staff in Minneapolis
KSTP 5, 11/2/22
“Vulnerability in healthcare is a pretty precious commodity,” said Dr. Mitch Radin, a Clinical Psychologist at Hennepin Healthcare Medical Center (HCMC) in downtown Minneapolis.

A study published in the Journal of Emergency Medicine in 2021 found that because of the trauma doctors treat “shift after shift,” many of them “become unable to recognize when they themselves are injured and suffer, specifically as it pertains to moral injury.”

The researchers found that it’s a form of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Dr. Tom Klemond, Vice President of Medical Affairs at HCMC, describes it as a crescendo effect.

“Repeated exposure to the wrong thing happening changes us over time,” he said. “Doctors who have been five or 10 years in practice dealing with these events repeatedly, repeatedly. It causes us damage and makes us hard. It makes us callous and distant. It has effects on our health and our emotional well-being.”

What is RSV? What should parents be looking for? 
WCCO 4, 10/28/22
“It’s respiratory syncytial virus,” said Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian, a pediatrician with Hennepin Healthcare. “It affects our lungs, it affects our respiratory system and is descriptive of the way that the virus attacks the lungs. It melds cells together and that’s something you call a syncytia.”

After surviving rare cancer and horrific crash, Minneapolis woman returns to thank caregivers
MPR News, 10/25/22
When physical therapist Megan Meyer first met Magnuson after the crash, the young woman was “walking a walker, she had a knee brace on her left knee and her walking pattern was, like, really unstable.”

Meyer recalled Monday that Magnuson initially was limited to yes/no responses.

“Maybe they were accurate. Maybe they weren’t accurate,” she recalled.

“Now, she has really progressed. She [doesn’t] need a walker anymore, really built up her leg strength, especially on that left side from her fractures, and then started walking independently,” Meyer said.

Minneapolis woman who survived horrific car crash meets with crew who saved her life
FOX 9, 10/24/22
“So seeing all of Anya’s hard work and her passion to truly get better,” said physical therapist Megan Meyer. “That’s the thing is, Anya … her personality and her drive and her determination and her ability to just say, ‘I’m going to make improvements, I’m going to live on my own.'”

RSV is filling up Minnesota hospitals, “adding up to sort of a perfect storm”
KSTP 5, 10/21/22
“I think it’s just all adding up to be sort of a perfect storm for the number of RSV kids in the hospital,” declares Dr. Stacene Maroushek, a Hennepin Healthcare pediatrician who sees about 20 patients a day.

Doctors warn parents about RSV, respiratory viruses spreading earlier than usual in children
FOX 9, 10/13/22
“We’ve seen a lot of kids with runny nose, coughs, colds. A lot of respiratory illnesses have been emerging, and they’ve been emerging early in the season,” said Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian, a pediatrician with Hennepin Healthcare.

Health concerns from popular “One Chip Challenge” prompt warnings
KSTP 5, 10/10/22
“Just because something is available, doesn’t make it safe,” said Dr. Travis Olives, an emergency physician and poison expert at Hennepin Healthcare.

Flu season could be “challenging and difficult”
CCX Media, 10/5/22
“There are some reasons to think that we may have a difficult or more challenging flu season this year, and one of them is that, all of the things that have protected us the past two years are gone,” said Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn, an internist and pediatrician at Hennepin Healthcare.

Retired NFL player Ben Utecht and a doctor weigh in on Tua Tagovailoa’s injury
KARE 11, 9/30/22
“You have to protect that brain and the brain is more important than the game in the end,” Hennepin County Medical Center’s Dr. Ashley Bjorklund said. 

Phillip Brooks is an equity advocate
American Healthcare Leader, 9/26/22
“People don’t understand how many social services are available to them. It is up to us to identify and refer eligible patients.” – Phillip Brooks, Hennepin Healthcare

New and improved COVID boosters arriving in Twin Cities
KSTP-5, 9/19/22
Dr. David Hilden with Hennepin Healthcare and host of the “Healthy Matters” podcast says he is recommending the shot to most patients over the age of 12 if it’s been two months since completing the original vaccination series.

Area health expert sounds off on potential end of COVID-19 pandemic
KSTP-5, 9/19/22
“The long-term effects of COVID are still very real, and so it’s really important that people recognize this is not the common cold,” said Hannah Lichtsinn, a physician with Hennepin Healthcare. 

What you need to know about the updated bivalent boosters
KARE 11, 9/5/22
In terms of eligibility, Hennepin Healthcare internist and pediatrician Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn said the window is wide open.

“A whole lot of people are eligible,” she said. “Also anybody who is eligible for a booster anyways and hasn’t had one is eligible for this. Also if you’re up to date on boosters and it’s been at least two months since your last one, also eligible. That goes for anybody 12 years old or older.”

COVID-19 vaccination rate among young children is low
CCX Media, 9/1/22
Hennepin Healthcare pediatrician Dr. Leslie King-Schultz says while children are as likely to get COVID-19 as adults, kids are less likely to become severely ill. But there are still fatality risks.

“There’s an estimate about one child is dying every day of COVID around the country,” said King-Schultz.

A night in Minneapolis
Star Tribune, 8/28/22
At HCMC’s trauma center, health care assistant Becca Wangen finishes with one patient when the arrival of another is announced. She slumps against the wall, clutching her head, before rushing back inside the stabilization room.

“I’m by myself because we’re short-staffed,” she says.

What parents can do to help with back to school anxiety 
KARE 11, 8/22/22
Hennepin Healthcare Pediatrician Hannah Lichtsinn says a lot of that anxiety comes from the fact that kids have very little, if any, control over their lives.

Interns reflect on 6 weeks at Hennepin Healthcare
KSTP 5, 8/19/22
An eye-opening experience for teenagers in the Twin Cities is coming to a close.  Twenty interns spent six weeks shadowing workers, nurses and doctors with Hennepin Healthcare. They learned about x-rays, emergency medicine, dermatology and much more.

“It’s a good opportunity to know what’s in the hospital — what a day in the doctor’s life is,” said Albert Omboga. “This has been the most life-changing academic or enriching thing I’ve done in my whole life,” said Stella Wright.

Mental health program looks to address “tough it out” culture among medical residents
MinnPost, 8/15/22
Before RISE was launched in 2019, Dr. Katie Thorsness said, “I saw a lot of physicians, oftentimes too late. For various reasons they were worried about seeking treatment. As a psychiatrist I could hear how much they were suffering in silence.”

Expert: Flu season could arrive earlier this year, be tougher on kids
WCCO 4, 8/9/22

Dr. Stacene Maroushek of Hennepin Healthcare says it is expected to be extra tough on kids.

“There’s just data now coming out of the southern hemisphere. They have a peak that’s about two months before most of their normal peak,” Maroushek said. “And so if we translated that to the United States and to Minnesota, what that would mean instead of having maybe peak flu season in January/February, you might be looking at October/November.”

How much water should we be drinking each day? 
WCCO 4, 8/2/22
“There’s not even an exact amount, although a good place to start is that old myth of eight cups a day,” said Dr. David Hilden, internal medicine at Hennepin Healthcare.

What is monkey pox and how does it spread? Local doctor weighs in
CCX Media, 7/29/22
Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn with Hennepin Healthcare says it’s important to know the symptoms of Monkey pox, which has been declared a global health emergency.

After witnessing “horrific” crash, surgeon rushes to help driver pinned behind semi
WCCO 4, 7/29/22

It was supposed to be a day for Dr. Ryan Fey to relax. The Hennepin Healthcare trauma surgeon got out of the operating room early on July 20, so he drove out west of the Twin Cities to his farmland. He planned to check on his bees.

Surgeon saves utility worker impaled in crash
FOX 9, 7/20/22
A level one trauma surgeon was in the right place at the right time after he was behind a man who crashed into the back of a truck carrying utility poles.

“It was pretty obvious it was bad. Once I saw him crash, I ran up to the truck,” said Dr. Ryan Fey.

President Biden testing positive for COVID has sparked questions and misinformation online
KARE 11, 7/21/22
“The COVID vaccines like any other vaccine don’t prevent infection 100% of the time. What they’re really designed to do specifically with these COVID vaccines is prevent a severe and big illness,” Hennepin Healthcare Internal Medicine Clinic Director Dr. Kate Hust says.

Baby bust followed pandemic’s onset in Minnesota

Star Tribune, 7/19/22
Mothers are more confident at this point in the pandemic, but early on some were asking for long-term contraception before they left the hospital with their newborns, said Fernanda Honebrink, a nurse-midwife with Hennepin Healthcare. “Everybody was afraid about what was going to happen to them.”

Heatwaves becoming more intense: “This is not your parents’ or grandparents’ weather”
WCCO 4, 7/19/22
“Really what’s hard on our body is the change in temp,” said Dr. James Miner, Chair of Emergency Medicine at Hennepin Healthcare. He has seen dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke show up locally this summer.

Hemp-derived THC in food and drink: Doctor answers the top 4 questions
WCCO 4, 7/19/22
We took those questions to Dr. Gavin Bart, the Addiction Medicine Division Director at Hennepin Healthcare. Dr. Bart says people will feel the effects.

“It depends on your level of tolerance. Go slowly and wait until you know how it’s going to affect you,” Bart said.

Twin Cities hospital making commitment to furthering diversity
FOX 9, 7/15/22
“We need to be a part of the change that needs to take place,” Anthony Campisi, manager of talent acquisition at Hennepin Healthcare told FOX 9. Campisi says that right now, diversity is a priority. “We’re at 34% diversity within the organization right now, but we know that’s not enough. So we’re trying to be creative and do whatever we can to get people interested in careers in health care.”

Marion Barber III’s death serving as a reminder as temperatures rise
KARE 11, 7/12/22
Officials say he had a known history of exercising in sauna-like conditions, something HCMC’s Dr. James Miner says is very concerning. 

“Professional athletes have specific regimens that have gotten them to the elite level that they’re at, that I can’t comment on, but for most of us it’s really not a good idea,” said Dr. Miner, HCMC’s Chair of Emergency Medicine, and Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Minnesota Medical School.

Addressing Community Gun Violence: Women in Healthcare Leadership
HealthLeaders Podcast, 7/5/22
HealthLeaders strategy editor, Melanie Blackman, interviews Meghan Walsh, MD, MPH, FACP, chief academic officer for Hennepin Healthcare, a level I trauma center in downtown Minneapolis. She talks about the tough topic of gun violence, the importance of community, and shares leadership insights and advice.

Heat waves can kill. Know how to keep babies, adults and older people safe when temperatures spike
Inforum, 7/1/22
“As it gets worse and worse, you end up getting a little confused, not thinking quite straight and you can get very, very sick,” said Dr. James Miner, head of Emergency Medicine at Hennepin County Medical Center and a professor at the University of Minnesota Medical School. “We’ve actually seen people die from getting too hot.”

Mall of America’s vaccine clinic offering COVID shots to children opens Wednesday
KARE 11, 6/21/22
Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn interviewed.

Temps soar near triple digits across much of Minnesota with more to come
Star Tribune, 6/19/22
Christine Hill, a spokeswoman for HCMC in Minneapolis, said late Sunday afternoon that the hospital had treated a couple of patients with heat-related illnesses.

People must drink plenty of fluids, stay indoors when possible and be cognizant of the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke, said Dr. Andrew Laudenbach, an emergency physician at HCMC. He urged people without access to air conditioning to find places to cool down and to check on relatives and the elderly, particularly those who live alone.

Study: Homeless and incarcerated Minnesotans struggled to get COVID-19 vaccines
Star Tribune, 6/19/22
“This [study] shows we still have a ways to go in terms of moving the needle, especially for populations that are the most unstable,” said Dr. Katherine Diaz Vickery, a family medicine doctor and executive director of Hennepin County’s Health Care for the Homeless program, and one of the study’s primary authors. “People experiencing homelessness and people in jail need access to trusted health care providers who can offer them support, choices and time to decide what vaccines are best to protect them from the severe consequences of COVID-19.”

The study’s authors — including researchers at the University of Minnesota, Hennepin Healthcare and several of the state’s largest private health systems — stopped short of making policy recommendations.

Hennepin Healthcare CEO on gun violence public health crisis
FOX 9, 6/12/22
This week, in the wake of recent mass shootings, leaders from Minnesota hospitals and health systems came together to declare gun violence a public health crisis. Sunday morning, we heard from Hennepin Healthcare CEO Jennifer DeCubellis on the declaration.

What happened to those 2020 pay cuts? Final CEO pay numbers mixed in Minnesota
Star Tribune, 6/11/22
At Hennepin Healthcare, Jennifer DeCubellis was the only CEO on the Star Tribune list who was both new to the job in 2020 and received only partial-year pay since she started in mid-February. The executive team took voluntary pay cuts due to the pandemic, the health system said in a statement, including a 20% reduction in pay for DeCubellis.

Minnesota’s largest hospitals saw revenue rebound in 2021 — but uncertainty remains
Star Tribune, 6/11/22
Hennepin Healthcare, which operates HCMC in Minneapolis, fell below the Star Tribune median last year with an operating margin of 2.2%. Patient volumes in most areas have not returned to pre-COVID levels, so the medical center has been forced to cut costs, said Derrick Hollings, the chief financial officer.

“We’re still not back to what I would consider to be our normal trend line,” he said.

It’s garage sale shopping season: Here are some shopping tips for parents
KARE 11, 6/9/22
Julie Philbrook, a trauma prevention specialist with Hennepin Healthcare, gives the do’s and don’ts of garage sale shopping for your little kids.

Biden administration outlines COVID vaccine strategy for children under 5
KARE 11, 6/9/22
“We want to make sure that the process is as safe as possible,” said Dr. Leslie King-Schultz of Hennepin Healthcare. 

Homeless and incarcerated people in Minnesota struggled to access Covid vaccines
STAT News, 6/8/22
“There’s a lot of different health outcomes — Covid-19 vaccination being near the top of our attention these days — where there’s room for improvement,” said Katherine Diaz Vickery, a family care doctor with the Health, Homelessness, and Criminal Justice Lab at the Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute and one of the study’s lead authors.

How bad is the EMS staffing and diversity shortage, and how does Hennepin EMS want to solve it?
MinnPost, 6/8/22
Sam Erickson, a paramedic, said that staffing shortages and a higher volume of calls led to paramedics and EMTs working around 10 to 12 hours of overtime each week. Because of that, EMS professionals have experienced more mental health struggles, according to Daniel Sebo, the deputy chief of staff at Hennepin EMS. 

Chronic stress is burning out more parents
MPR, 6/8/22
The pandemic stretched many parents to their limits. Two-thirds of working parents are showing signs of exhaustion and chronic stress, according to a report released in May from researchers at Ohio State University. Katie Thorsness is a perinatal psychiatrist with Hennepin Healthcare’s Mother-Baby Program and the Redleaf Center for Family Healing who was interviewed by Angela Davis for this episode.

State health care systems declare gun violence a public health emergency
KARE 11, 6/8/22
“What we are seeing is alarming numbers in healthcare, in particular, across our local community, state and nation, that shows trauma levels going up year over year,” said Jennifer DeCubellis, CEO of Hennepin Healthcare. “At Hennepin Healthcare, as both a level one trauma center for adults and pediatrics, we have seen over a 50% increase in the past two years, in penetrating trauma which includes gunshot wounds, stabbings, self-inflicted, but it’s an alarming trend, and it’s not a blip in time, it really is a trend.”

Ten Minnesota hospital systems denounce gun violence as public health crisis, call for solutions
Star Tribune, 6/8/22
Hennepin Healthcare, which operates one of three urban trauma centers in the Twin Cities, has tracked a 50% increase since 2020 in penetrating trauma injuries that include gunshot wounds. Responses have included a Next Step outreach program to try to prevent violent injuries from prompting retaliatory assaults, but chief executive Jennifer DeCubellis said more preventive solutions are needed.

“As health systems we’re in the business of saving lives and this is a place where we’re seeing the numbers increase and we’re alarmed and we can make a difference,” she said.

Local health care systems declare gun violence a “health crisis”
FOX 9, 6/8/22
“As healers, whose job it is, whose business it is to create an environment where we’re saving lives – it felt like we could no longer stay silent,” Jennifer DeCubellis, Hennepin Healthcare CEO, told FOX 9.

Boy’s bright shoes aid his underwater rescue after boat is struck by barge near Red Wing
Star Tribune, 6/6/22
Dr. Ashley Bjorklund, an HCMC pediatric intensive care doctor, said that “time alone does not give him a prognosis” for survival or being spared serious injury.

“We always give kids a fighting chance when we can,” said Bjorklund, who emphasized that preventive steps such as wearing a life jacket — as all four children were — and supervising children are vital to prevent life-threatening incidents on the water. “Young brains do much better and can overcome things that an older brain can’t do.”

One corrective for healthcare inequities: more Black women in health careers
Minnesota Spokesman Recorder, 6/2/22
Elizabeth Alabi knew from a young age that she wanted to help people when she grew up.  Now, as a leading doctor, she wants to see more Black girls seriously consider choosing the healthcare profession as a career.

Alabi, an obstetrics and gynecology specialist, was among 50 medical volunteers who took part in the day-long “Black Women with Stethoscopes” events last month for young Black girls, sponsored by Hennepin Health Care. [See “Talent Garden grows local youth into healthcare workers,” MSR May 12] The Brooklyn Park native has been with the organization since 2016.

She recalled among the many questions from the girls at the April 30 event being asked  how long she had to go to school to be a doctor and how long her work hours are. “You do spend a lot of time in the hospital,” the doctor acknowledged.

More importantly, Alabi proudly pointed out, “I really wanted to serve the patient population, to love our patients. They’re very diverse. I’m happy that I’m here.”

COVID-19 hasn’t knocked down St. Anthony firefighter’s ambitions
Star Tribune, 5/29/22
“He was frankly lucky that his body responded the way it did,” said Dr. Matthew Prekker, an HCMC critical care specialist.

COVID-19 wave appears to be in retreat as trends improve in Minnesota
Star Tribune, 5/27/22
High levels of immunity as a result of vaccinations or coronavirus infections this winter are reducing the severity of illness this spring, said Dr. Matthew Prekker, a critical care medicine specialist with Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis.

“The baseline risk in the population for getting so, so sick — that was there before we had widely-accepted vaccines — is much lower now,” he said. “We’re also dealing with less virulent but very transmissible COVID strains … Fortunately, we’re not seeing critical illness nearly as much as we were last year.”

As weather warms up, reminders for staying safe in the water
FOX 9, 5/26/22
If you do suspect someone of having a spinal injury, “Roll them over like a log so that their nose stays is in line with their belly button and support them in the water until rescue can come,” said Trauma Prevention Specialist Julie Philbrook, RN.

In Minneapolis, a mobile van rolls out with health care outreach to kids
Star Tribune, 5/20/22
“When the pandemic began, clinics had limited access, and families were anxious and reluctant about in-person visits,” said Dr. Dawn Martin, a Hennepin Healthcare pediatrician. “So many of the families we work with already had barriers related to transportation, work schedules and childcare, and that situation became even more severe as things were shutting down.”

“I give big kudos to our outreach nurse and our community partners — health advocates, school nurses, public health nurses and community health workers,” Sheyanga Beecher said. “They help in identifying students, contacting families, answering questions and just generally serving as that ‘trusted face in a trusted space.'”

Maple Grove family desperately seeks baby formula
CCX Media, 5/19/22
“We’re hearing a lot of nervous folks, nervous parents who are just seeking advice on what to do next,” said Hennepin Healthcare Pediatrician Krishnan Subrahmanian. 

Photos: Introducing youth to healthcare
SunPost, 5/19/22
Hennepin Healthcare recently hosted a “Health in the Park” event at its Brooklyn Park clinic and pharmacy at 7650 Zane Ave. N. The event was part of Hennepin Healthcare’s Talent Garden, a series of initiatives to introduce youth and young adults to jobs in healthcare. Pictured are Hennepin County EMS members Kirstin Moore and John Sylvester, who are providing local youth with a 25-minute tour of an ambulance.

COVID treatment will soon cost you
FOX 9, 5/18/22
“People in the past were able to come in for treatment of COVID symptoms without a copay and that is now changing,” said Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn with Hennepin Healthcare.

Pediatrician offers last-resort options for those searching for baby formula
WCCO 4, 5/16/22
“We do know this is affecting people not evenly. not equitably,” Hennepin Healthcare pediatrician and American Academy of Pediatrics spokesperson Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn said.

Hennepin Healthcare program aims to get more kids of color interested in medical careers
KSTP 5, 5/15/22
Dr. Nneka Sederstrom, chief health equity officer at Hennepin Healthcare, said her goal is to address the lack of diversity in hospital staff.

“They don’t know that they can do this, the world doesn’t tell them that they can,” Sederstrom said. “You can’t do what you can’t see.”

Minnesota hospitals feel the strain as national supply of CT scan dye tightens
MPR, 5/12/22
“We use it like water. It’s just, it’s there, we use it all the time,” said Dr. Gopal Punjabi, department chair of radiology at Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis. “Our current supply is about four weeks’ worth. I think in about two or three weeks we’ll have to start making some hard decisions if we don’t locate more contrast.”

Baby formula shortage: Experts say don’t dilute or DIY
KARE 11, 5/11/22
While lawmakers attempt to identify quicker solutions, parents are still scrambling. Some are even floating the idea of making their own formulas, which is something both the FDA and Dr. Krishan Subrahmanian are warning against.

“And don’t water down trying to make it last,” he added. “I know both those things can be very tempting, they can also be very dangerous.”

Black Women with Stethoscopes
Medical Alley, 4/30/22
On Saturday, April 30th, 2022, Hennepin Healthcare hosted its “Black Women with Stethoscopes” event to give nearly 100 girls of color an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in a number of different areas of healthcare. Also helping support the event were Medical Alley Association members 3M, Starkey, and Ecolab.

Minnesota joins growing number of states investigating cases of severe hepatitis among children
KSTP 5, 4/29/22
“The reason the alerts are being put out, the Health Alert Network in Wisconsin and in Minnesota and across the country, is there’s a little bit of a delay between the vomiting diarrhea and hepatitis that’s developing,” said Dr. Stacene Maroushek, a Hennepin Healthcare pediatric infectious disease specialist. “They want to make sure that everybody has this on their radar and we’re really looking at cases of hepatitis not as something else but possibly related to the adenovirus, as well as looking at other causes.”

Hennepin Healthcare works to inspire Black youth to become doctors
FOX 9, 4/28/22
“The most important reason why we’re focusing on children at a young age is that we have to provide opportunities for our young Black and Brown kids to see themselves in the field of medicine,” says Dr. Nneka Sederstrom, the chief health equity officer at Hennepin Healthcare.

Parents express relief wait is at an end for pediatric COVID vaccine
WCCO 4, 4/28/22
“Omicron is different than Delta and the original forms of COVID, when the vaccine was initially tested for adults,” Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn, a pediatrician at Hennepin Healthcare and a spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics, said. “When we look at efficacy for adults and older kids against Omicron, this vaccine at the lower dose for younger kids is just as effective.”

With COVID now common in kids, even routine childhood vaccinations remain behind schedule
KARE 11, 4/27/22
“COVID is out there,” said Sheyanga Beecher, a nurse practitioner for Hennepin Healthcare. “It’s a part of our every day, but at the same time, these numbers tell me, because it is out there, we need to rethink what normal is.”

For Beecher, who is also program director for Hennepin Healthcare’s Pediatric Mobile Health Unit, that means rethinking mobile options to take wellness checks and immunizations on the road to better reach kids.

“This unit serves kids from newborn all the way through teenager and young adult,” Beecher said.

The idea for the mobile unit began early in the pandemic. Many parents were skipping well-child visits due to COVID concerns, which led to a different kind of concern for Dr. Dawn Martin.

“We saw rates of childhood vaccinations declining and we didn’t want to a see whooping cough or a measles outbreak in the setting of a pandemic,” said Martin, Medical director for the mobile unit. “So we knew we had to get vaccinations out in the community and meet our patients where they were.”

Infant formula shortage leads to empty shelves, stressed families
KSTP 5, 4/12/22
“It’s stressful,” said Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian, a pediatrician at Hennepin Healthcare.

Dr. Subrahmanian says he has heard from several families, all saying the same thing. “They say, ‘I’ve been to five or six stores, and I’m seeing empty shelves.’ And there is a little bit of panic going on,” he said.

“It’s just been a struggle”: Baby formula shortage affecting Twin Cities parents
WCCO 4, 4/11/22
“We’ve had a double whammy,” said Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian, a pediatrician with Hennepin Healthcare.  Subrahmanian says parents who are struggling to find formula can buy online or try looking in smaller stores and drug stores. They can ask a friend or family member if they have unused formula of their brand choice.

Next Step program at Hennepin Healthcare aims to make streets safer
Fox 9, 4/10/22
Kentral Galloway, director of the Next Step program at Hennepin Healthcare, and his team provides immediate hospital bedside support to young shooting victims and their families in an effort to interrupt the cycle of community violence.

Baby formula shortages causing concerns for some local hospitals and families
KARE 11, 4/10/22
Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian is a pediatrician at Hennepin Healthcare, and also one of many parents affected by baby formula shortages this year.

“We have a 6-year old, a 4-year old and a 1-year old, a baby who just turned 1,” he said. “We’re hearing a lot of concerned parents, worried parents.”

April is National Minority Health Month
FOX 9, 4/3/22
Hennepin Healthcare family nurse practitioner Bolo Diallo-Young joins FOX 9 Morning News to talk about efforts to reduce health disparities among communities of color, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Teacher at “death’s door” gets second chance at life thanks to new ultrasound technology
KARE 11, 3/31/22
“I think it’s the future of EMS that we have this on every single ambulance,” said Hennepin EMS paramedic Seth Bravinder, who discovered Bowler’s clot. “His right ventricle was way larger than it should have been.”

KARE 11 and Hy-Vee team up to surprise 4,000 healthcare workers
KARE 11, 3/30/22
“Seeing people rally alongside them is inspirational,” said CEO Jennifer DeCubellis. “Right now they have a small chance to breathe, but what happens when you have a chance to breathe is you realize what you’ve been through. Seeing gratitude from the community, seeing people rally alongside them is absolutely inspirational.”

“This little token of thanks is really appreciated from everyone,” agreed Alicia Bravo, RN.

Common cold transmission rising as pandemic restrictions ease
WCCO Radio, 3/24/22
“The ironic thing about the pandemic of the past couple years is that many people felt really pretty good. They didn’t get a single illness,” Dr. David Hilden said.

Purpose and meaning essential to creating joy in healthcare workplaces
Healthleaders, 3/23/22

Healthcare worker burnout was a top concern for health systems, hospitals, and physician practices before the coronavirus pandemic, and it has reached crisis proportions during the public health emergency. Burnout continues to play a leading role in the widespread healthcare workforce shortages.

Elizabeth Goelz, MD, is an internal medicine physician and associate director of the Hennepin Healthcare Institute for Professional Worklife in Minneapolis.

Are you sneezing more this week? Snow mold could be the culprit
WCCO 4, 3/18/22
The melting snow is behind sneeze attacks and other symptoms connected to allergies.

“It’s a very unpleasant thing to go through. It feels very bad, it ruins your quality of life,” Hennepin Healthcare allergist Dr. Joshua Dorn said.

Revenue Cycle Management Outsourcing: Training must be top of mind
Relias, 3/15/22
“When you outsource in the revenue cycle, you are looking for a partnership. I tell people all the time: An outsource partner is an extension of your business office,” said Phillip E. Brooks, vice president of revenue cycle at Minneapolis-based Hennepin Healthcare.

Catalyst Initiative creates sustainable systems change by giving communities what they say they need
Sahan Journal, 3/14/22
Arti Prasad, MD, chief of internal medicine at Hennepin Healthcare, is leading two projects that received funding through the MN DOH to promote non-narcotic pain management throughout the state.

Does Minneapolis need a place where users can inject drugs while supervised? One neighborhood is studying the idea. 
Star Tribune, 3/9/22
“We have pretty conclusive evidence from international models, and the results are very compelling,” said Dr. Gavin Bart, director of Addiction Medicine at Hennepin Healthcare.

Minnesota’s “frozen woman” alive and well decades later
FOX 9, 3/2/22

Dr. David Plummer says when people suffer from extreme hypothermia the cold temperature slows down their blood flow and metabolism, reducing their body’s need for oxygen.

He says he’s handled up to 30 cases similar to Vig’s over the last few years with an ECMO machine that pumps a person’s blood through a heater to warm their organs from the inside. More often than not, they do recover.

“It’s like hibernation. There are species that have perfected that, but we’re not one of them,” said Plummer, an emergency room physician at HCMC.

What are the health benefits of coffee? 
WCCO 4, 2/21/22
“I think done in certain quantities, it’s not as harmful as you think it is,” said Dr. Woubeshet Ayenew, a cardiologist at Hennepin Healthcare who also enjoys a couple cups himself. “I do not want three [cups] to be the floor but rather the ceiling people are thinking about. So a maximum of about three cups of coffee is what I get out of [the study].”

More Twin Cities schools are dropping mask mandates, but some question whether now is the right time
WCCO 4, 2/16/22
“Right now is not the time,” said Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn, an internist and pediatrician at Hennepin Healthcare. “The American Academy of Pediatrics and the CDC both recommend universal masking for students and staff at schools and have made no recommendation to stop it.”

Doctors “cautiously optimistic” about declining MN COVID-19 cases
KSTP 5, 2/16/22
“Our inpatient hospitalizations are down almost half of what they were last week,” said Dr. Deepti Pandita, Hennepin Healthcare’s chief health information officer. “Our pediatric hospitalizations are down, which is good news. And in clinic, we are seeing less and less patients acutely sick with COVID.”

Hospital-based prevention program helping to curb “epidemic” of gun violence
WCCO 4, 2/16/22
“Once people show up and their friends show up, they are ready to go back out there and retaliate,” Galloway said. “So our job is to calm down and try to get them to understand that, hey, your life is valued, so let’s not go back out there and do something to derail that.” – Kentral Galloway, Next Step Program Director. 

Despite plans, precautions, COVID-19 nearly broke Minnesota hospitals. Why?
MPR, 2/16/22
“We were in crisis for different reasons at different points throughout the pandemic,” said Dr. John Hick, an emergency room physician who regularly advised the Walz administration on hospital crisis planning.

Be Well with TCL: Broken Hearts
KSTP 5, 2/14/22
You’ve probably heard the saying that someone died from a broken heart.  Is that true?  Can that really happen?  Dr. David Hilden from Hennepin Healthcare says yes, but it is rare.

Minneapolis, St. Paul lift COVID vaccine/test requirements for restaurants, bars, event spaces
WCCO 4, 2/10/22
“I think it might be a little premature given where we are with the hospital. We’re still at numbers that were reflective at our peak a year ago,” said Hennepin Healthcare pediatrician Dr. Stacene Maroushek. She also said while capacity is better compared to last month, inpatient care remains stressed. They do anticipate hospitalizations should improve as cases keep falling.

COVID restrictions ease in Twin Cities as infections trend down
KARE 11, 2/10/22
“Yes, people absolutely should still be masking when they’re inside,” said Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn, a pediatrician and internal medicine doctor with Hennepin Healthcare. She went on to say, “Even though we’re past the peak of the omicron wave, we’re still seeing really high rates of infection.”

Are Pfizer’s COVID pills going to highest-risk patients? Inside the U.S. rollout
NBC News, 2/5/22
“If you just take the FDA at face value, you’re giving Paxlovid to an awful lot of people who will not benefit,” Dr. John Hick, an emergency physician at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, said.

Minnesota COVID-19 cases set monthly record in January
Star Tribune, 2/1/22
For now, all the leading indicators for pandemic activity in Minnesota — whether it’s COVID cases, the statewide positivity rate or patients in hospitals and intensive care — are trending favorably, said Dr. Dan Hoody, the interim chief medical officer at Hennepin Healthcare.

Hospitals aren’t out of the woods, Hoody said, because staff outages remain higher than they were in previous surges. Even so, he said it was “reassuring to think that in the coming weeks — with both the downstream impact on acute care from all these favorable leading indicators coming to fruition, as well as more staff coming back into the ranks — that we should expect patient flow and acute care access to continue to improve.”

COVID cases in kids are dropping; doctors feel hopeful
KARE 11, 1/26/22
“I’m actually quite hopeful because it seems like, at least anecdotally in our clinic, and some of our numbers, we’ve turned the corner,” said Dr. Stacene Marouschek, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at Hennepin Healthcare.

Here’s your cold weather survival guide
Star Tribune, 1/25/22
Hearty Minnesotans may simply want to shrug the arctic chill, but don’t underestimate the challenges and dangers that negative temperatures bring, said Dr. Thomas Masters, a physician in Hennepin County Medical Center’s department of emergency medicine.

“Cold does not care how strong you are,” he said.

Minnesota schools adjust as temperatures drop to dangerous lows
FOX 9, 1/24/22
The bitter cold changes things for doctors at Hennepin Healthcare too, “I know we’re going to be busy, I know we’re going to be seeing a lot more cases of frostbite than we would normally be, so we’re prepared for it.” Dr. Thomas Masters said on Monday.

“I am seeing a lot of people with permanent disabilities.”
Sahan Journal, 1/24/22
“I am seeing a lot of people with permanent disabilities. They’re not the same people they were before they had COVID,” says Kenyatta Carroll, RN.

Sick with COVID: “I couldn’t break the fever. I thought I was going to lose my life.” 
Sahan Journal, 1/24/22
“After my bout with COVID, I became a vaccine advocate. I started talking to the world about it, encouraging people to get vaccinated.” – Michelle Davenport, 55, registered nurse, professional development specialist, Hennepin County Medical Center.

Minneapolis Team says bittersweet farewell to Hennepin Medical Center
DVIDS, 1/22/22
One of the team members, U.S. Air Force Capt. Jenna Mason, a registered nurse with the 633d Medical Group out of Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, said that though she’s happy to be headed home for a while, she’s also sad to say goodbye to the hospital where she’s worked to save countless lives.

When will it be over? 
Star Tribune, 1/22/22
“We will see more Greek letters,” said Dr. David Hilden at a Twin Cities forum on Tuesday. Hilden, Hennepin Healthcare’s vice president of medical affairs, was referring to the nomenclature in use to designate emerging variants of concern.

Doctors are seeing more frostbite cases this year due to extreme cold
KARE 11, 1/21/22
“Thirteen individuals are admitted right now for frostbite,” Hennepin Healthcare physician Dr. Thomas Masters says. When you combine alcohol and below zero temps, he says even something as simple as walking a few blocks without hats or gloves can be enough for frostbite to set in.

When death is coming, difficult choices are required
Star Tribune, 1/19/22
John Hick, Michele LeClaire and Heidi Erickson are emergency and critical care physicians at Hennepin County Medical Center.

Updated guidelines for quarantining COVID-exposed kids puts some parents in tough spot
WCCO 4, 1/18/22
Hennepin Healthcare pediatrician and infectious disease expert Dr. Stacene Maroushek says hospitalizations are up among young children but overall Omicron has been milder compared to Delta in kids.

“Most kids are going to be doing okay,” Maroushek said. “The reason we have so many more hospitalizations is the sheer number of people getting infected.”

For coronavirus testing, the nose may not always be the best
1/15/22, Heromag.net (originally in New York Times)
“There was initial concern that saliva was not the gold standard sample, that it was not the most sensitive sample,” said Glen Hansen of the Laboratory of Clinical Microbiology and Molecular Diagnostics at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minnesota.

Federal, state agencies work to ramp up COVID test availability as demand grows
KSTP 5, 1/15/22
“In the first two weeks, this first part of the month of January, our testing demand has doubled compared to the same time period in the first part of December,” said Dr. Kate Hust, the medical director for Hennepin Healthcare’s internal medicine clinic.

Doctors discuss natural immunity, post-COVID activities
Fox 9, 1/13/22
“If you vaccinated, and you are also boosted, and you got a breakthrough infection, you are about the safest person there is,” said ⁦⁦Dr. David Hilden, an internal medicine physician at Hennepin Healthcare and host of the new HealthyMatters podcast.

Why some doctors are focusing more on hospitalization rates and other data than case numbers during omicron
KARE 11, 1/13/22
It paints a picture, but probably not the whole picture,” said Dr. Deepti Pandita, who is the Chief Health Information Officer at Hennepin Healthcare.

Hospitals, emergency rooms in need of relief as omicron variant surges
KARE 11, 1/12/22
Dr. James Miner, chief of emergency medicine at Hennepin Healthcare, says hospitals are busier than they’ve ever been.

Good Question: What are the health benefits of fresh air?
WCCO 4, 1/11/22
“What we find is that when we’re outside, when we’re interacting, when we’re taking deep breaths outside, playing, we’re breathing a lot more. We’re taking bigger breaths,” said Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian, a pediatrician with Hennepin Healthcare.

Minnesota hospitals, Red Cross ask for blood donations amid national supply “crisis”
WCCO 4, 1/11/22
Dr. Jed Gorlin, who is both the transfusion service medical director at Hennepin County Medical Center and medical director at Memorial Blood Center, said nobody has been denied a needed blood transfusion at a hospital that Memorial serves.

MDH: At-home COVID tests not included in state data
KSTP-5, 1/10/22
Dr. David Hilden, an internal medicine physician at Hennepin Healthcare who treats COVID-19 patients, suggested looking at other metrics as well, including hospitalizations and deaths.

He said we have to wait and see how the spread of the omicron variant will play out in Minnesota.

“We know the omicron variant is very transmissible. In other words, it’s just highly contagious. I think it’s very likely the official test results will skyrocket up in the next few weeks. We know that because it is so contagious. And even though it’s less severe, so many people are going to have it that it is likely hospitalizations are going to go up and deaths are going to go up,” Hilden said.

Local nurses help new parents and babies stay heart-to-heart in the hospital
KARE 11, 1/10/22
“We would love to have parents here all the time with their babies and bonding with them and enjoying them. But, with COVID, too, having other things on the outside world happening, it’s not always possible, explained Nicole Kunstleben, a NICU nurse.

Parents struggling to keep kids from cabin fever amid COVID and extreme cold
Hennepin Healthcare Pediatrician Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn says right now she tells families three things. First, you can still go outside if you’re dressed properly.
Second, if you do visit places indoors with a lot of people, she recommends a quality, well-fitted mask for your kids, like a KF94 or KN95. Third, stay home if anyone in your family is sick.

As new state sites open, experts explain why it’s urgent to expand COVID testing options
KSTP 5, 1/8/22
“It’s really important that people are able to test for COVID as soon as possible, as easily as possible,” says Dr. Hannah Lichtsinn, a pediatric physician with Hennepin Healthcare. “With omicron spreading through the Twin Cities, so many people are getting exposed, or developing some symptoms from COVID.”

Minnesota boy’s COVID-19 journey reflects rare but rising omicron risk
Star Tribune, 1/8/22
“This was the first one we’ve had here that knew from the news what it meant to be sick [with COVID-19] and going on a ventilator,” said Dr. Ashley Bjorklund, an HCMC pediatric intensive care specialist. “He knew what that meant, and he was really scared.”

Even amid overwhelmed hospitals and omicron surge, health care leaders offer cautious optimism
KARE 11, 1/7/22
“It’s much more likely than previous variants to have an end point,” said Dr. James Miner, chief of emergency medicine at Hennepin Healthcare.

Good Question: Do diets really work? 
WCCO 4, 1/6/22
“It’s physiological, it’s not because of some lack of willpower,” says Dr. Iesha Galloway-Gilliam, co-director of Hennepin Healthcare’s Comprehensive Weight Management Center. “That’s why it’s so difficult to maintain these dietary patterns.”

As COVID strains emergency rooms, health officials urge extra precautions during cold weather
KARE 11, 1/3/22
While Dr. James Miner says that’s not an overwhelming amount, he does expect it to get worse as more frigid temperatures are on the way later in January.

How old is too old to shovel snow? Doctors weigh in.
WCCO 4, 1/4/22
Dr. Michelle Carlson says the number isn’t what’s important, what’s more important is how a person feels.

From upbeat to unsure: Vaccine pioneers reflect on pandemic’s rollercoaster year in Minnesota
Star Tribune, 1/3/22
Health care workers are resilient, said Nick Hetchler, a medical interpreter who was one of the first five vaccinated during a ceremony at Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis.

In late 2020, the vaccine brightened otherwise dark days as Minnesota was just beginning to come out of its biggest COVID-19 surge thus far, recalled Dr. Shirlee Xie, another of the first five recipients at Hennepin Healthcare.