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A Message from ACHS’s CEO, Angela Mortoza

As we leave the cold winter behind and roll into spring there are many exciting things happening at Adair County Health System. We continue to grow and look for new ways of providing convenient access of care throughout Adair County.  Recently, we have expanded our specialty clinic services to include Iowa Ortho.  We are excited to welcome, Michael Gainer, M.D., specializing in hand and upper extremity surgery; John Netrour, M.D., hip and knee surgery; and Anthony Stark, D.O., physical medicine and rehabilitation.
 In October, we completed our 3P project that centered on the renovation of our current operating room, admitting/registration area, and ambulance drop off.  Our next steps will include public tours and community meetings to share the plans for the spaces and invite ideas from the public.
Our growth is expanding beyond the bricks of the hospital walls. We are working to improve the overall health and wellness of the community we serve. For the first time in history, our local Board of Health, the ACHS Foundation Board, and ACMH Board of Trustees gathered in the same room and adopted a Community Needs Action Plan. The Plan has the following three goals:
Decrease the cancer and chronic disease rates through an increase in preventative screens.
Increase the number of community members making lifestyle changes to reduce obesity and reduce cancer risks.
Continue to provide high quality services for prevention, early detection, and treatment of health issues throughout Adair County Health System.
There are numerous community partners that are helping us to achieve our goals.
I thank you for your support for the Adair County Health System.  I invite you to explore our website anytime you need additional information regarding the services we provide, and please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have.

Respectfully,
Angela Mortoza CEO
641-743-7234

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What is a Health Coach?

1. A method of guiding people through behavior change.
2. Utilizes a strong compelling vision, goal setting, accountability, and support.
3. Focus is on the client.
4. Coaches help to identify strengths, barriers, strategies, and motivators to aid in behavior change.

Clients decide what they want to work on; coaches guide clients through the coaching process. Coaching focuses on helping clients grow and become experts of their own well being.  Coaching has been around about 20 years.  Coaches have been used in a variety of ways.  The coaches work with People who have chronic illness, to make sure they get the care they need.

It is common for Patients to ask for answers or “Quick fixes”. The Health Coach believes you are the expert on you.  However I can give you evidence that shows what other people have done and what has worked.  Patient outcomes improve when they are an active collaborator in their treatment.  Empowering Patients involves exploring their own ideas about how they can make changes to improve their health and drawing on the patient’s personal knowledge about what has worked in the past. 

The biggest payoff is the creation of healthier communities. 

Credits: David Swieskowski, Kate Hall, Tania Gibbie, Katie Ingle, and Bill Preist.

Denise Nelson, RN
Health Coach, Adair County Health System
641-743-6189 EXT 299

The information provided on the Adair County Health System’s Blog is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. If you have specific needs, please see a professional health care provider.
Any references to products, services, or health care providers on this web site are not a recommendation or endorsement of products, services or providers. Links to other Web sites from this site are provided for convenience and do not constitute or imply endorsement.
Effort is taken to insure accurate information, however we cannot guarantee completeness or timeliness.

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Winter Weather Information You Need to Know

Each year, exposure to cold, vehicle accidents caused by wintery roads, and fires caused by the improper use of heaters injure and kill hundreds of people.  These and other winter weather hazards have a significant threat to human health and safety.  Major winter storms can include high winds, freezing rain or sleet, heavy snowfall, and dangerously cold temperatures. The aftermath of a winter storm can last for days, weeks, or even months.  To know what you should prepared for, it is important to know what different types of advisories, watches and warnings that are issued during winter weather:

Winter Weather Advisory:
Accumulations of snow, freezing rain and/or sleet may cause significant inconveniences and could lead to life-threatening situations.
Winter Storm Watch:
Winter storm conditions are possible in the next 12 to 48 hours.
Winter Storm Warning:
Issued when hazardous weather in the form of heavy snow, heavy freezing rain and/or heavy sleet is occurring or expected to occur within the next 36 hours.
Wind Chill Advisory:
Wind chill values between -20°F and -29°F are expected to occur within the next 36 hours.
Wind Chill Watch:
Wind chill values of -30°F or lower are possible within the next 12 to 48 hours.
Wind Chill Warning:
Wind chill values of -30°F or lower are expected to occur within the next 36 hours.
Freezing Rain Advisory:
Accrual of less than ¼ inch of ice is expected due to freezing rain within the next 36 hours.
Ice Storm Warning:
Accrual of ¼ to one inch or more of ice is expected due to freezing rain within the next 36 hours.

Be prepared for winter weather before it arrives.
• At home, make sure you have an emergency kit with winter items such as snow shovels, sand or rock salt, adequate blankets and clothing, food and water. Make sure you have sufficient heating and install carbon monoxide detectors.

• Be sure to have your vehicle winterized before the winter storm season. If you must travel, have a predetermined route and let someone know when you plan to leave and arrive. Keep the gas tank full, take a charged cell phone and travel in the daylight, if possible.  Keep a disaster supply kit in your vehicle in case you are stranded. 

• Review your family’s emergency plan.  Know where and how to get in contact with each other in case you are separated.  Listen to the radio or watch the local news for weather updates and important alerts.  Make sure all your cell phones or laptops are fully charged.  Bring your pets and animals inside and move livestock to sheltered areas.

• Businesses and employers should also consider winter weather preparedness for a safe and successful operation.  Talk with your employees about winter safety, and discuss emergency and winter weather policies.

• Sign up for the Adair/Guthrie Emergency Notification System

For questions contact Stephanie Claussen, Community Preparedness Coordinator at 641-743-6173 or Amy O’Rourke, Disaster Coordinator with Adair County Health System at 641-743-2123 or Robert Kempf with Adair County Emergency Management at 641-332-3030.

Stay safe and keep warm this season. 

The information provided on the Adair County Health System’s Blog is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. If you have specific needs, please see a professional health care provider.
Any references to products, services, or health care providers on this web site are not a recommendation or endorsement of products, services or providers. Links to other Web sites from this site are provided for convenience and do not constitute or imply endorsement.
Effort is taken to insure accurate information, however we cannot guarantee completeness or timeliness.

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Why Is a Healthy Weight Important

Reaching and maintaining a healthy weight is important for overall health and can help you prevent and control many diseases and conditions. If you are overweight or obese, you are at higher risk of developing serious health problems, including heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, gallstones, breathing problems, and certain cancers. That is why maintaining a healthy weight is so important: It helps you lower your risk for developing these problems, helps you feel good about yourself, and gives you more energy to enjoy life.

What Is Overweight and Obesity?
Overweight is having extra body weight from muscle, bone, fat, and/or water. Obesity is having a high amount of extra body fat. Body mass index (BMI) is a useful measure of overweight and obesity. Talk to your health care provider if you are concerned about your BMI.
What Factors Contribute To a Healthy Weight?
Many factors can contribute to a person’s weight. These factors include environment, family history and genetics, metabolism (the way your body changes food and oxygen into energy), and behavior or habits.

Energy Balance
Energy balance is important for maintaining a healthy weight. The amount of energy or calories you get from food and drinks (energy IN) is balanced with the energy your body uses for things like breathing, digesting, and being physically active (energy OUT):
• The same amount of energy IN and energy OUT over time = weight stays the same (energy balance)
• More energy IN than OUT over time = weight gain
• More energy OUT than IN over time = weight loss
To maintain a healthy weight, your energy IN and OUT don’t have to balance exactly every day. It’s the balance over time that helps you maintain a healthy weight.

You can reach and maintain a healthy weight if you:
• Follow a healthy diet, and if you are overweight or obese, reduce your daily intake by 500 calories for weight loss
• Are physically active
• Limit the time you spend being physically inactive

Summary
Maintaining a healthy weight is an ongoing lifestyle instead of a passing resolution. Our community has many resources, facilities, and individuals to assist you with a life change. Contact your healthcare provider for insight and references for a program best suited for you! Good luck and good health!
Reference: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

By: Lori Schwartz, RN – Adair County Memorial Hospital

The information provided on the Adair County Health System’s Blog is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. If you have specific needs, please see a professional health care provider.
Any references to products, services, or health care providers on this web site are not a recommendation or endorsement of products, services or providers. Links to other Web sites from this site are provided for convenience and do not constitute or imply endorsement.
Effort is taken to insure accurate information, however we cannot guarantee completeness or timeliness.

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Metabolic Syndrome

Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of conditions- Increased blood pressure, a high blood sugar level, excess body fat around the waist and abnormal cholesterol levels-that occur together, increasing your risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes.
Having just one of these conditions doesn’t mean you have metabolic syndrome. However, any of these conditions increase your risk of serious disease. If more than one of these conditions occur in combination, your risk is even greater.
Getting more physical activity, losing weight and quitting smoking help reduce blood pressure and improve cholesterol and blood sugar levels.  These changes are key to decreasing your risk for chronic long term illness.
1. Exercise  Doctors recommend getting 30 or more minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as a brisk walking, every day.
2. Lose weight  Losing as little as 5 to 10 percent of your body weight can reduce insulin levels and blood pressure and decrease your risk of diabetes.
3. Eat healthy  The dietary approaches to stop high blood pressure (DASH) diet and the Mediterranean diet, like many healthy-eating plans, limit unhealthy fats and emphasize fruits, vegetables, fish, and whole grains.  Both of these dietary approaches have been found to off health benefits- in addition to weight loss.  Do you know all the ingredients in the things you eat? Read the labels on all foods you buy.  A  Few things you want to avoid: Parabens, Hydrolyzed vegetable protein. For people who have components of metabolic syndrome, ask your doctor for guidance before starting a new eating plan.
4. Stop smoking  Smoking cigarettes increases insulin resistance and worsens the health consequences of metabolic syndrome. Talk to your doctor if you need help kicking the cigarette habit.
Credits: Mayo Clinic
Denise Nelson, RN
Adair County Health System
641-743-6189  ext: 299

The information provided on the Adair County Health System’s Blog is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. If you have specific needs, please see a professional health care provider.
Any references to products, services, or health care providers on this web site are not a recommendation or endorsement of products, services or providers. Links to other Web sites from this site are provided for convenience and do not constitute or imply endorsement.
Effort is taken to insure accurate information, however we cannot guarantee completeness or timeliness.

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WHY SHOULD DIABETES BE TREATED?

Over time high blood sugars cause damage to large and small blood vessels.  This damage increases the risk of problems with the heart, eyes, kidneys, feet, and legs.  High blood sugars also damage nerves throughout the body.  The purpose of treating diabetes is to keep the blood sugar as close to normal as possible.  When the blood sugar is kept close to normal you can prevent these problems.  A normal blood sugar is fasting under 100 and random (non fasting anytime of the day is under 140). 
People with diabetes are 10 times more likely to have a lower limb amputated than those without diabetes.  Diabetes can cause or contribute to a number of eye diseases, from retinal bleeding and swelling to cataracts and glaucoma.
Patients with leg pain should report it to their Physicians.  People with risk factors such as Hypertension or Diabetes should take care of the medical conditions that may lead to or complicate vascular disease.
Over time, diabetes, if not managed effectively, can increase the risk of complications such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, bacterial and fungal infections as well as damage to nerves, kidneys, and eyes.  For all people who are diabetic yearly eye and dental exams are a must.  Diabetics also need to follow up with their doctor as per his or her directions.

Credits
McGregor Lott, MD
Nosheen Azam, MD
Mayo Clinic

Denise Nelson, RN  641-743-6189 ext 299
Health Coach
Adair County Health System

The information provided on the Adair County Health System’s Blog is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. If you have specific needs, please see a professional health care provider.
Any references to products, services, or health care providers on this web site are not a recommendation or endorsement of products, services or providers. Links to other Web sites from this site are provided for convenience and do not constitute or imply endorsement.
Effort is taken to insure accurate information, however we cannot guarantee completeness or timeliness.

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CHF (Congestive Heart Failure)

Heart failure also known as congestive heart failure occurs when your heart muscle doesn’t pump blood as well as it should.  Conditions such as narrowed arteries in your heart (coronary artery disease) or  high blood pressure untreated over a period of time gradually leave your heart to weak or stiff to fill and pump well or as normal.
Signs of CHF Shortness of breath, Fatigue and weakness, Swelling of your legs or feet, Rapid or irregular heartbeat, Reduced ability to exercise, persistent cough or wheezing, increased need to urinate at night, swelling of your abdomen, sudden weight gain for no reason no change in diet habits, Lack of appetite and nausea, elevated blood pressure, and even chest pain.
When to see a doctor
See your doctor if you think you might be experiencing signs or symptoms of heart failure. Seek emergency treatment if you experience any of the following:
Chest Pain
Fainting or severe weakness
Rapid or irregular heartbeat associated with Shortness of breath, chest pain or fainting.
Sudden, severe shortness of breath and coughing up pink, foamy mucus.
Although these signs and symptoms may be due to heart failure, there are many other possible causes, including other life threatening heart and lung conditions.  Don’t try to diagnose yourself Call 911 for immediate help.  Emergency Department health care provider will try to stabilize your condition and determine if your symptoms are due to heart failure of something else.
When should you call EMS or 911:
When you think someone’s life is threatened.  When someone faints or collapses.  When someone has persistent chest pains of difficulty breathing.   When someone is badly injured.  When in doubt.

Credits Mayo Clinic Staff

Denise Nelson, RN
Health Coach, Adair County Health System
641-743-6189 Ext 299

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Prenatal Vitamins – Are they right for you?

People are tempted to take prenatal vitamins because of unproven claims that they make your hair thicker and nails stronger.
They are not suitable if you are not pregnant and not planning to become pregnant.  Prenatal vitamins are made specifically for women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant, and women who are breast-feeding.
Folic acid  Women who are trying to get pregnant or are pregnant need 600mcg (micrograms) through diet and supplements.  Healthy adults need only 400mcg, while uncommon getting to much folic acid can mask the symptoms of B-12 deficiency and delay diagnosis and treatment.
Iron While pregnant it is recommended women take 27mg (milligrams) a day.  Women between the ages of 19 and 50 who aren’t pregnant need only 18mg a day, and women over age 51 and all adult males need 8mg a day. Getting to much iron can be toxic because it can build up in your body, causing constipation, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and in very bad cases, possibly death.
Calcium Pregnant adult women and healthy men and women ages 19-50 all need 1,000mg a day.  Men and Women age 51 and older need 1,200mg a day.  Because prenatal vitamins are intended to supplement calcium you get in your diet, they generally contain only 200 to 300mg of calcium.  Prenatal vitamins do not meet your calcium needs; you likely won’t get enough calcium and raising your risk of osteoporosis and other health problems.
It is better to take a multivitamin made for your age or talk to your family Doctor should you take or do you need a supplement?
Credits: Mayo Clinic

Denise Nelson, RN
Health Coach
Adair County Health System
641-743-6189 ext. 299

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Flu Vaccine Time!

By Cassie Rasmussen, DO

It’s that time of year again! Time to receive your influenza vaccination or “flu shot”. Influenza is a highly contagious virus that spreads around the country usually between October and May. Symptoms of the flu come on suddenly and consist of fevers, chills, sore throat, muscle aches, fatigue, cough, headache and nasal congestion. One of the top ways to prevent contracting influenza is by receiving your yearly vaccination. 
Flu viruses are frequently changing. Each year’s influenza vaccine protects against the 3 or 4 most common flu viruses expected for the year.  Children six months through eight years of age should receive two doses of the vaccine, at least one month apart, the first year they get vaccinated. All other people only need to receive one dose each year. A “high dose” influenza vaccine is available for people 65 years of age and older.
There are three types of influenza vaccine available. Firstly is the inactivated flu vaccine, which is the “flu shot”. This contains an inactivated flu vaccine therefore does not contact any live influenza virus.  A common misconception about the flu shot is that people get “the flu” from the flu shot however with an inactivated virus, getting the flu from this vaccine is not possible.  A different, live, weakened, influenza vaccine is sprayed into the nostrils. This second vaccine may be given to people 2 through 49 years of age, whom are not pregnant.  A third type of vaccine is available to those who have an egg allergy.
Each year thousands of people in the United States die from the flu and many more are hospitalized. Therefore it is important to receive your yearly influenza vaccination to protect yourself and loved ones.  The flu vaccine is the best protection that we have from contracting the flu and its complications. So please get yourself vaccinated against influenza this season. Vaccines are now available. Also while you are receiving your flu shot, ask if you are eligible for pneumovax.

The information provided on the Adair County Health System’s Blog is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. If you have specific needs, please see a professional health care provider.
Any references to products, services, or health care providers on this web site are not a recommendation or endorsement of products, services or providers. Links to other Web sites from this site are provided for convenience and do not constitute or imply endorsement.
Effort is taken to insure accurate information, however we cannot guarantee completeness or timeliness.

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Is It Depression?

All of us feel blue, sad, hopeless, or listless at times.  When these feelings become a major aspect of our lives, and consume our thinking and behavior, help is needed.

Depression is a very common mental health disorder, affecting all age groups and genders.  Willpower alone will neither prevent depression, nor will it “cure” depression.
Causes of depression range from low levels of brain chemicals, poor coping skills, overwhelming life situations, substance abuse, chronic pain, to possibly an inherited predisposition to the disease.
A healthy life style can build a foundation for mental health.  Measures like healthy nutrition, adequate sleep and rest combined with exercise can help ward off depression.
Speak with your healthcare provider if you persistently feel down or are poorly functioning.  Some physical causes can mimic the symptoms of depression.  Together with your healthcare provider you can decide on the best treatment options to once again return you to your best level of functioning and a feeling of satisfaction with life.

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