JCH&L Seeking New CEO

FAIRBURY – Jefferson Community Health & Life CEO Chad Jurgens announced earlier this month he will be pursuing a new job opportunity. JCH&L’s board of directors is beginning the process of seeking a new CEO.

Jurgens, who has been Chief Executive Officer of JCH&L for 6 years and was Chief Financial Officer for 13 years prior, has accepted the position of senior executive of financial services at Beatrice Community Hospital and Health Center. He is expected to begin his new position in November.

“The board accepted his resignation with regret, and has begun the process of finding another excellent leader for the organization,” said Brian Scheele, JCH&L board president.

The board voted at its October meeting to work with a search firm in the recruitment process. An interim CEO is expected to be named.

During Jurgens’ tenure, JCH&L acquired The Fairbury Clinic; opened JCH&L Plymouth Clinic; completed an $8 million renovation project; rebranded the facility to Jefferson Community Health & Life from Jefferson Community Health Center; was named one of the Top 20 Critical Access Hospitals in the nation in 2018; was recognized as one of the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals in nation for five of six years; received 5-Star ratings for Gardenside long-term care; and received the Bronze Commitment to Quality Award for Gardenside long-term care; and received the Spirit Award in 2019 and the Star award in 2015 from the Nebraska Safety Council.

“We appreciate Chad’s leadership, and wish him well in his next endeavor,” Scheele said.

JCH&L is a 17-bed Critical Access Hospital which offers inpatient and outpatient services, 2 family medicine clinics, Burkley Fitness Center, Gardenside long-term care, and Home Health Services. It is governed by an 8-member board, with a physician serving as an ex-officio member of the board. JCH&L has served Jefferson County and the surrounding area since 1963.

JCH&L Offers Next Session of Smart Moves

Lifestyle change program helps participants learn to live healthy

FAIRBURY — The eighth session of a successful lifestyle change program will be offered beginning in February 2020 at Jefferson Community Health & Life in Fairbury. The year-long program is designed for those who are at risk for diabetes and want to change their lifestyle to avoid getting diabetes. A free no-obligation introductory class will be held at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov 19. Anyone who thinks they might be interested in Smart Moves is encouraged to attend this session. To sign up for the introductory class, call Lisa Edeal RD, LMNT, at 402-729-6846.

The full year-long program will begin in February 2020. Classes will meet on Tuesdays at 4 p.m.

Lifestyle coaches who lead the program are JCH&L Dietitian Lisa Edeal RD, LMNT; Bekah Kimberlin, PharmD; and Craig Bontrager, director of JCH&L Burkley Fitness Center.

“This program has been successful in helping participants to make lifestyle changes which positively impact their health,” Edeal said.

JCH&L’s program has received Full Recognition from the Centers For Disease Control (CDC). This designation is reserved for programs that have effectively delivered a quality, evidence-based program that meets all the standards for CDC recognition.

Studies show that diabetes can be prevented. Diabetes risk can be lowered by losing weight, eating healthy, exercising regularly, and taking part in a lifestyle change program, such as Smart Moves. Smart Moves is a program of the National Diabetes Prevention Program. JCH&L is participating with the support of Public Health Solutions District Health Department.

For the first part of the program, participants meet in a small-group setting weekly for one-hour presentations. For the second portion of the program, participants will meet twice a month.

The program provides lifestyle coaching and group support, promotes healthier eating and weight loss, explores ways to be physically active, creates strategies to overcome barriers, and teaches participants how to apply coping skills to stay successful.

The cost of the program is $225 for the full year. This fee includes not only the program, but also a six-month membership to the JCH&L Burkley Fitness Center (a $200 value.) Financial assistance is available for those who meet certain financial eligibility criteria.

Anyone interested in Smart Moves is encouraged to attend the free no-obligation introductory class. Call Lisa Edeal RD, LMNT, at (402) 729-6846 or email lisa.edeal@jchealthandlife.org to register or for more information.

Nebraska Community Bloodbank Visits Nov. 25

FAIRBURY –The next Nebraska Community Bloodbank blood drive will be held on Monday, Nov. 25, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the bloodmobile in the JCH&L parking lot (on the H street side of the building.) All types are needed.

All participants in this drive will have a chance to win a movie ticket package.

Giving blood is giving a gift of life. Nebraska Community Bloodbank is Jefferson Community Health & Life’s bloodbank, and the two organizations partner for blood drives in Fairbury to save lives.

To make an appointment, call Jean Smith at JCH&L at 402-729-6851, the Nebraska Community Bloodbank at 1-877-486-9414 or visit NCBB.org and use sponsor code JCHC.

With iDonate you can save time by completing your health history on line ahead of your bloodmobile visit. To get started, visit NCBB.org/iDonate

Big Blue Test Coming to Burkley Fitness Center

Learn how exercise affects your blood sugar

FAIRBURY – How does exercise affect your blood sugar? Find out on Nov. 15 with the Big Blue Test at Jefferson Community Health & Life Burkley Fitness Center.

JCH&L Diabetes Educator Bekah Kimberlin, PharmD, will be at the fitness center on Nov. 15 from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m., 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. to take blood sugars pre- and post-exercise. Between blood sugar checks, participants are encouraged to exercise for 14-30 minutes, doing the workout of their choice, or a suggested workout.

“Exercise is one of the many factors which affect your blood sugar. This is an opportunity to see how exercise affects yours – with no cost and no obligation,” said Kimberlin.

It is not necessary to be a fitness center member to participate – just check in with the front desk when you arrive and tell them you would like a complimentary pass to participate in the Big Blue Test.

Diabetes risk tests are available all month at JCH&L Burkley Fitness Center.

“Knowing your risk for diabetes is important. We want those who are at risk to know there are ways to prevent diabetes,” Kimberlin said.

November is National Diabetes Month, and it’s a great time to learn more about diabetes. JCH&L offers diabetes self-management classes for those who have been diagnosed with diabetes, and Smart Moves lifestyle change program for those who have pre-diabetes or are at risk for pre-diabetes. For more information, contact Kimberlin at 402-729-3351.

Alzheimer’s Caregivers Support Group to Meet Oct. 28

The Alzheimer’s Caregivers Support Group will meet on Monday, Oct. 28, at 6:30 p.m. in Jefferson Community Health & Life’s Small Conference Room.

The program will be videos exploring “Alzheimer’s Disease: How to Create a Financial Plan of Attack,” by the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute.

Easiest access will be by parking in the H Street parking and entering through the JCH&L Main Entrance. Follow the lobby signage to “Hospital.” The meeting rooms will be to the left. The Small Conference Room is the second door.

The Alzheimer’s Caregiver’s Support Group is a program of the Alzheimer’s Association which typically meets on the fourth Monday of each month at 6:30 p.m. at Jefferson Community Health & Life. It is designed for those who are caregivers and family members of those who have Alzheimer’s Disease or other dementias.

The group is designed to provide an opportunity anyone interested to share their experiences with Alzheimer’s Disease. There is no cost, and no pre-registration.

For more information, contact Lana Likens at Jefferson Community Health & Life at 402-729-6855

Jefferson Community Health & Life Receives Safety Award

Each year during the Nebraska Safety Council Conference and Trade Show, the work of organizations that have made a difference in workplace safety, is recognized by the Nebraska Safety Council.

The Workplace Safety Award Program is designed for Nebraska Safety Council member companies that encourage and promote the prevention of occupational injuries and illness in their workplaces and have achieved superior results in the success of their safety programs. Applications are peer-reviewed by industry professionals in a volunteer committee that evaluates various aspects of their programs.

Jefferson Community Health & Life was awarded the Spirit Award for its safety achievements during an Awards Luncheon which was held on October 16, 2019, at the Holthus Convention Center in York, Nebraska. Attending to receive the award for JCH&L were safety committee members: Patrick Hoins; Jasmine Schwisow; Tricia Forney; Julie Dux; Diane Wellsandt; Katie Schoenrock; Sara Nickel; and Sarah Bauer.

The Nebraska Safety Council is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. Our mission is to provide leadership and resources to promote a safe and healthy environment in our workplace and community.

The Council is a nonprofit organization and can be contacted at 402-483-2511 or on the web at www.nesafetycouncil.org.

Gardenside, Cedarwood Welcome Trick or Treaters

Trick or treaters will be welcomed at Jefferson Community Health & Life Gardenside, 2200 H St., and Cedarwood assisted living, 828 22nd St., from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 31.

“Gardenside residents and Cedarwood tenants enjoy handing out treats and seeing the young trick or treaters in their costumes,” said Deb Sutton RN, administrator at Gardenside and Cedarwood. “Welcoming trick or treaters is a tradition that our residents and tenants look forward to.”

All trick or treaters must be accompanied by adults. Trick or treaters may enter the main entrance of Jefferson Community Health & Life Gardenside (the covered walkway by the circle drive accessed from H Street) or the main entrance of Cedarwood (accessed from 22nd Street.)

For more information, contact Gardenside at (402) 729-5220 or Cedarwood at (402) 729-6100.

JCH&L Therapy Staff Earn Certification in Women’s Health

Women have unique health needs – and well-trained physical and occupational therapists can be a great resource to help them. JCH&L Sports Medicine and Rehab Services staff earned a certification in Women’s Health in September.

“We learned techniques and interventions to help women reclaim active, satisfying, pain-free lives,” said Amy Martin MPT, director of JCH&L Sports Medicine and Rehab Services. “We are excited to be able to provide treatment for some of the specialized health needs of women.”

Strategies, interventions and techniques include methods to assist with:

  • Reducing pelvic pain and managing pelvic floor dysfunction
  • Resolving bladder hyperactivity and incontinence
  • Reducing low back pain related to pelvic floor dysfunction
  • Rebuilding core muscles and stability after childbirth
  • Reducing pain, swelling, range of motion, fatigue and functional impairment in patients undergoing treatment for breast cancer
  • Controlling swelling, decreasing fluid buildup and preventing infection in patients with lymphedema
  • Reducing pain and improving strength, flexibility, and stamina in patients with fibromyalgia
  • Decreasing bone loss, protecting the spine, reducing fall risk and increasing mobility in patients with osteoporosis

“These issues are some of the most common issues that women of various ages face,” Martin said. “We encourage women who may be experiencing any of these common health issues to talk to us or their family medicine physician about how therapy might be able to help them.”

Receiving the Certificate in Women’s Health were:
Amy Martin, MPT, director;
Callie Engler, PT, DPT;
Nichole Thorp, PT, DPT;
Cassidy Bentley, MOT, OTR/L

Amy Martin, MPT Nichole Thorp, PT, DPT

New Therapist Joins JCH&L Sports Medicine and Rehab Services

Cassidy Bentley MOT, OTR/L is new Occupational Therapist

New Occupational Therapist Cassidy Bentley is excited to start her career at Jefferson Community Health & Life Sports Medicine and Rehab Services.

Cassidy is a Bruning native, so she is familiar with the area. She graduated with her bachelor’s degree in exercise science and a minor in health science from the University of Nebraska-Kearney in 2017. She graduated with her Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy from Nebraska Methodist College in 2019. She received news she passed her boards on Sept. 18.

Occupational therapy is the profession that helps people of all ages do they things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of daily activities (occupations.) Occupational therapy practitioners enable people of all ages to live life to its fullest by helping them promote health and prevent – or live better with – injury, illness or disability.

Common occupational therapy interventions include helping children with disabilities participate fully in school and social situations, helping people recovering from injury to regain skills, and providing support for older adults experiencing physical and cognitive changes. Occupational therapists have a holistic perspective, in which the focus is on adapting the environment or task to fit the person.

She is educated in women’s health, and is a member of the American Occupational Therapy Association.

Mobile Screening Services to be Offered at JCH&L

Mobile Screening Services from Bryan Health will be offered at Jefferson Community Health & Life on Oct. 24 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. The screenings are available on a private-pay basis only.

Several types of screening are available. Atrial fibrillation screening is available for all ages. Atrial fibrillation is the most common heart arrhythmia, affecting 2.7 million Americans. The cost of this screening is $10.

The other three screenings available are available to those who are 65 or older, or age 55 with certain personal risk factors or family history. Please discuss your eligibility with the scheduler when you call to make an appointment. Screenings available based on age or risk include:

  • Peripheral Arterial Disease screening – A painless, non-invasive test called the anklebrachial index (Abi) compares the blood pressure in the ankles to the blood pressure in the arms to determine how well the blood is flowing. Cost– $20.
  • Abdonimal Aortic Ultrasound screening – This painless, non-invasive screening detects the presence of an aneurysm in the abdominal aorta (four hour fast required.) Cost – $40.
  • Carotid Artery Ultrasound screening – This painless, non-invasive screening detects plaque deposits in the carotid arteries. These plaque deposits are a leading risk factor for stroke. Cost – $40.

Appointments for any of the screenings maybe made by calling JCH&L Outpatient Services at 402-729-6851.