Grace Health Board of Directors, Executive Management team and Pharmacy staff cut the ribbon to officially mark the grand opening of Grace Health Pharmacy. It is a full-service pharmacy located just inside Entrance B at Grace Health, 181 West Emmett Street, Battle Creek and is open to both patients and the community. Most insurance plans are accepted including Medicaid and Medicare. Grace Health Pharmacy is open Monday – Friday 8:00 am – 7:00 pm. Come meet the staff or call (269) 441-6774.
BATTLE CREEK, MI – In the coming months, Calhoun County will become a fresh training ground for new physicians following approval by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) for a new Family Medicine Residency Program at Bronson Battle Creek.
The Family Medicine Review and Recognition Committee of the ACGME issued the approval for the new program during its most recent meeting, April 26-27. Recruitment of the first class of resident physicians will begin later this year and training of the first class will follow in the summer of 2019.
“This was a pivotal step in our work to enrich this community and improve the quality of life for our patients who call Battle Creek and Calhoun County home,” said Dr. Holli Neiman-Hart, program director for the new Family Medicine residency and an associate professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine (WMed).
The new training program is the result of several years of work and collaboration by WMed, Bronson Healthcare and Grace Health to form a new Family Medicine residency in Battle Creek. The medical school also has a Family Medicine residency in Kalamazoo, which boasts 24 physicians-in-training under the leadership of Dr. Glenn Dregansky.
In Battle Creek, six new physicians will be accepted yearly into the three-year curriculum and once the residency is fully operational 18 Family Medicine residents will be practicing in the community at any given time. The new residents will receive training at Bronson Battle Creek and Grace Health, Battle Creek’s federally qualified family health center, will serve as the residency site for outpatient training.
Dr. Peter Chang, President/CEO of Grace Health, said the new Family Medicine residents will be a welcomed addition to Battle Creek and he looks forward to watching their development as physicians and their work to be creators of positive change in the community.
“Our relationship with the community and our patients is one built on trust,” Dr. Chang said. “Our work as leaders in addressing community health issues is vitally important and will be buoyed by the addition of these new physicians-in-training year after year.”
The new residency training program at Bronson Battle Creek got off the ground in 2016 thanks to startup funding – three $1 million grants – from Bronson Healthcare Group, Bronson Battle Creek Hospital Community Partners and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. In providing money for the new program, the donors cited the unique opportunity to strengthen healthcare services in Calhoun County and build a stronger local economy.
Dr. Lisa Graves, chair of the medical school’s Department of Family and Community Medicine, said approval of the new residency program by the ACGME is an important milestone in expanding graduate medical education at WMed and the institution’s continued mission to train physicians who serve patients and the medical profession with compassion and dignity.
“Growing a pipeline of competent physicians to meet the needs of not only Calhoun County and Southwest Michigan, but the state and the nation, is extremely important,” Dr. Graves said. “This new residency will play a vital role in doing that.”
Dr. Neiman-Hart said the new residency program will provide residents with broad exposure to the many aspects of family medicine so they are well-prepared family doctors at the end of their training. A key focus for Dr. Neiman-Hart as the leader of the new Family Medicine residency will be the retention of residents once their training has concluded.
Jim McKernan, Chief Operating Officer of Bronson Battle Creek, said he looks forward to welcoming the new residents to the Cereal City in the summer of 2019. He said the residency program will help Bronson Battle Creek to better recruit and retain physicians, bring new jobs and investment to the community and provide much-needed relief in the shortage of primary care doctors in Calhoun County.
“This residency approval is another sign of the positive momentum we are seeing in Battle Creek,” McKernan said. “BC Vision has been focused on education, employment, and vitality. Our residency will connect in all three areas, bringing 18 physicians-in-training plus teaching staff to live, learn and work in our community. All three founding partners are committed to assuring that this is a win for Battle Creek and that the residents will be active participants in the life of our community.”
Grace Health (GH) is starting 2018 with a new model of care called Neighborhoods. What does this mean? Patients are choosing a GH Primary Care Provider (PCP) whom they will see for most or all of their visits. Each PCP works with a team of providers and support staff who know the patients and their medical history. Each team makes up a “Neighborhood” and patients are seen in their Grace Health Neighborhood whenever they need healthcare. Each patient’s Neighborhood will follow their health and suggest changes to improve their well-being. Each PCP and care team will regularly screen for health problems that could go unnoticed, preventing serious health concerns later. Regularly visiting your PCP helps you look out for your health and well-being. We want to build strong patient-provider relationships that lead to improved health!
Calhoun County is one of several counties in Michigan being affected by Hepatitis A, a serious liver infection. Symptoms include fever, fatigue, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, pale stools, and jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and/or skin). The disease is spread through contact with infected persons, or use of illegal drugs.
How can you prevent the spread of hepatitis A? If you are at risk, get vaccinated. Talk with your healthcare provider about vaccination. Also, practice good hand hygiene. Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after using the bathroom and before preparing or eating food. Finally, make sure you avoid sharing food, beverages, or other items like toothbrushes with others. We can stop the spread of Hepatitis A in Michigan. Learn more: http://www.michigan.gov/hepatitisaoutbreak
Renee Underwood and Sarah Russell of Chemical Bank present Linda Wetherbee, CPNP and Diane Craig of Grace Health with a check for $3,500 to purchase books for Grace Health’s Reach Out and Read, Early Literacy Program. New, age-appropriate books are given to children 6 months – 5 years of age by the provider during their well child visit. The provider explains to the parent/guardian the importance of reading to/with a child – linking health care to literacy.
Grace Health’s Reach Out and Read, Early Literacy Program started in 2004. Through the generosity of organizations like Chemical Bank, Grace Health has provided over 51,700 books to children since the start of the program. Chemical Bank stated, “We hope our donation will help children develop a greater appreciation for reading, while at the same time help to improve literacy among the younger population.”
Grace Health staff raised funds to help those who have been affected by the recent hurricanes. A group of staff members (Jennifer Colberg, Melanie Gardner, Lori Wesner, and Lynne Olmstead) came up with a plan for various events staff could participate in to raise money for hurricane relief. Throughout the entire month of October staff had the opportunity to purchase raffle tickets at a chance to win 1 of 6 gift baskets. Staff paid to wear jeans on Jean Day, Friday, October 20. Not only did staff contribute financially to the cause, but they also put their baking skills to the test and made several homemade items for the Bake Sale on October 27. For every $1,000 raised, a raffle ticket was drawn giving a staff member 8-hours of PTO. All funds raised will be given to Samaritan Purse for Hurricane Relief 2017.
Grace Health thanks the following community organizations for donating gift cards and/or items for the gift baskets: Finley’s, Fitness Loft, Keyes Auto Body, Minges Creek Salon & Spa, Taqueria San Francisco, Goodrich West Columbia 7 Theaters, Wirtz Family Popcorn, NCG Cinema, Barista Blues, Culvers, Fun 4 Us, Steak and Shake, Taco Bell, FYE, Sweetwaters’ Donuts, Continental Pastries & Deli, Biggby Coffee, and Lux. Through the kindness of these organizations and all of the efforts from Grace Health staff a total of $5,798.50 was raised. A big THANK YOU to all who helped!
Although National Midwifery Week is October 1 – 7, 2017, Grace Health is recognizing its nine Certified Nurse Midwives during the month of October. What is a nurse midwife? Some people may think midwives only assist during labor; however, they can do much more. Grace Health’s Certified Nurse Midwives, provide health care to women which means they perform physical exams, prescribe medications, order laboratory tests, provide prenatal care, gynecological care, labor and birth care, and provide education and counseling for women of all ages. They specialize in knowing the difference between normal changes that occur and symptoms that require extra attention. Evidence-based medical care is used when there is a specific concern for the health of mom or baby. Grace Health’s Certified Nurse Midwives work with women during pregnancy and respect the goals and choices of each woman and family.
Grace Health asked some of its patients what they thought of their Midwife. This is what a few of them had to say:
“I had the same midwife through my whole pregnancy. She is amazing. When I was in labor, she was there for me. She jumped in when I was having back labor pains and showed my boyfriend how to push my hips together to relief the back pain. She stayed by my side.” – Kaleana Kidder
“My midwife helped us so much during our labor experience, she not only made me feel as comfortable as possible, she also was there for Julian and had him involved (his main worry was being left out). I first met my midwife during the CenteringPregnancy they offer at Grace Health which I highly recommend. She was able to be there for my entire pregnancy and deliver my baby. We were able to build a special bond which made my experience so much easier. She coached me through the entire 7 hours without pain medication and she knew exactly what she was doing. I’m so thankful for my midwife, I couldn’t have done it without her. To anyone who is considering a midwife I promise you won’t regret it”. – Denise Carpenter
“I saw a midwife for my prenatal care. My midwife helped guide my decision for delivery planning and supported my choices. During labor, my midwife was extremely reassuring in an emergency situation with having to have a C-section”. – Lindsay Wriston
If you have questions about certified nurse midwives or would like to schedule an appointment, call Grace Health at 269-441-3443
In January 2017, Grace Health started a Mom and Baby Tobacco Free Program. This is a smoking cessation program targeted at pregnant women to improve pregnancy health and birth outcomes by helping women quit smoking during pregnancy. Women who quit smoking are less likely to have a premature and low-birth weight baby. Staying smoke-free after the baby is born extends a positive health outcome for women and their families.
To participate in the Mom and Baby Tobacco Free Program, patients must commit to quit smoking during pregnancy. Grace Health providers and staff meet with them regularly to discuss their progress and provide the support they need. We often recommend resources such as Michigan Quit Line, Bronson Battle Creek Fresh Start program and Maternal Infant Health Program. Program participants who are successful in quitting smoking throughout pregnancy receive free diapers and a gift card.
Robin Cooper and Sarah Furdero recently graduated from Grace Health’s Mom and Baby Tobacco Free Program. Robin said, “I am thankful for the program and smoking is really important to stop when your pregnant.” Although Sarah tried to quit smoking before, her baby gave her a good reason to quit – “I tried to quit several times but when I got pregnant the decision was to quit something bad for something good.”
To learn more about Grace Health and the services provided visit their website at www.gracehealthmi.org
Grace Health recommends that children have a yearly physical exam which is an important step in helping to keep your child healthy. To encourage parents to bring their children in for a well-child exam, children brought in during the months of July and August had their name put in a drawing for a chance to win a new bike and helmet. Congratulations to our winners: Avril Elliott, La’ Montiana Walker, Lamar Burton, and James Yeomans. Grace Health would like to thank Meridian, UnitedHealthcare Community Plan, and Priority Health for donating a total of 4 bikes and 4 helmets for the drawing.