2020 JCH&L Charity Golf Tournament Cancelled

Jefferson Community Health & Life has cancelled the 2020 charity golf tournament, which had been scheduled for Aug. 7, 2020.

“While there is sadness in cancelling the 24th annual tournament, we feel it is prudent and in the best interest of health and well being of all concerned,” said Lana Likens, JCH&L director of Public Relations.

When JCH&L decided to move ahead with the tournament in late June, new COVID-19 diagnoses in Nebraska were declining, numbers for our immediate area remained very low, Directed Health Measures for the five-county health area were loosening, and JCH&L felt it could plan a COVID-19 friendly and responsible tournament.

By mid- to late-July, outbreaks in the counties surrounding Jefferson County – some linked to golf tournaments – forced JCH&L to reevaluate. News also came out that an outbreak elsewhere in the state had also been linked to a golf tournament. Currently, due to a shortage of reagents, test results are taking longer than normal to be returned.

“Even with the many precautions planned for our tournament, at this time we feel it is in the best interest of the health and well being of tournament participants and community to cancel,” Likens said. “As a community health care provider, we have a tremendous responsibility to keep your community members safe.”

Refunds are available to those who have donated. Those who wish to have refunds should contact Likens at lana.likens@jchealthandlife.org, or calling 402-729-6855.

Electronic Health Record Preregistration Events Planned at JCH&L

As JCH&L transitions to a new Electronic Health Record with Cerner in August, we are seeking to make things flow smoother for patients by offering preregistration events. Patients who participate will help us make sure their basic information, health history, medications, allergies and more are in the Electronic Health Record correctly. This will make their first family medicine appointment, hospital admission or ER admission a much quicker process.

At the preregistration events JCH&L will have treats and give aways, and everyone who participates will receive a coupon for a free small dish of ice cream at Classic Cones. Events are scheduled for 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Aug. 3, Aug. 10 and Aug. 14. To help these events go smoothly, please make an appointment by calling Erin Starr at 402-729-6889. We anticipate it will take no more than an hour—and it will be an hour that is well worth it. Please bring medication bottles, health history, insurance card, allergy information and immunization records.

JCH&L will go live with Cerner on Aug. 17. It will allow JCH&L to have one health record across the campus for all patients, and will enhance our patients’ safety. It will also allow some nice additions such as appointment reminders. A new patient portal will also be a helpful addition, allowing patients to see more of their health record, and provider easier communication with providers.

Call 402-729-6889 to make your appointment today!

JCH&L Gardenside, Cedarwood Delay Visitation

Visits by family members to JCH&L Gardenside and Cedarwood have been delayed from starting by at least one week.

“An increase in cases of COVID-19 in the surrounding counties in our public health district since late last week make us feel we must postpone visits,” said Deb Sutton RN, BS, NHA.  “We know everyone is excited to be able to see family again, but safety must be our first priority.”

JCH&L and Cedarwood work closely with Public Health Solutions district health department, and comply with state and federal guidelines. Moving forward the long-term care and assisted living facilities will review area stats and make decisions on a week-by-week basis, working with the local medical director and the public health department.

Visits had been announced to begin on July 15 after the facilities have been closed to visitors since March 14 because of state and federal guidelines for the COVID-19 pandemic. The Department of Health & Human Services and CDC have provided guidelines that nursing homes and assisted living facilities must follow to reopen to visitors, including strict standards for social distancing and the use of face masks for all visits. Community incidence of the virus must also be taken into consideration.

Anyone with questions about the requirements should contact Sutton at 402-729-6843.

JCH&L Gardenside, Cedarwood Prepare for Visits

JCH&L Gardenside and Cedarwood are preparing for visits from family members beginning July 15. The facilities have been closed to visitors since March 14 because of state and federal guidelines for the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are excited to be able to welcome family members back to visit their loved ones. We appreciate their patience and understanding, as we have very strict guidelines we are required to follow in order to keep our residents and tenants safe,” said Deb Sutton RN, BS, NHA, administrator of JCH&L Gardenside and Cedarwood.

The Department of Health & Human Services and CDC have provided guidelines that nursing homes must follow, including strict standards for social distancing and the use of face masks for all visits.

Gardenside and Cedarwood were able to move to Phase 2 on June 24. Phase 2 allows group activities in groups of 10 or fewer, with facemasks required for all residents attending. Group dining is allowed with two per table, with a plexiglass divider between them.

Gardenside and Cedarwood were granted permission to move to Phase 3 as of July 3rd. In order to move to Phase 3, both facilities had to test all staff for COVID-19, with all negative results; have enough personal protective equipment on hand in the event of a case being diagnosed; our hospital must have the capacity to admit any residents who contract COVID-19; we must have adequate staffing and a supervised visitation plan in place; and the public health district we are located in must be in Phase 3 and there cannot be a high number of COVID-19 cases in our county or community. Gardenside and Cedarwood staff were all tested for COVID-19 on June 30, and all test results were negative. Both facilities meet all other requirements.

If at any time a nursing home or assisted living has a positive case of COVID-19 identified with a staff member or a resident/tenant, the facility could be required to move back to Phase 1 immediately, with no visitation.

As the facilities open to visitors:

  1. They are required to have staff available to monitor and supervise all visits, to ensure the guidelines are properly followed at all times
  2. Nursing homes and assisted livings must designate a specific location for visits where staff can monitor that guidelines are followed
  3. All visitors must wear a cloth face mask that fits over their nose and under their chin during the entire visit
  4. All visitors must always maintain social distancing of 6 feet during the visit
  5. All visitors must be screened, including a temperature, before entering the nursing home or assisted living. Anyone with any respiratory symptoms will not be allowed to enter
  6. All visitors must clean their hands with hand sanitizer before entering the nursing home or assisted living
  7. Visiting areas must be disinfected between visits

To meet these requirements, Gardenside and Cedarwood have developed a visitation plan which includes:

  • Family members will be given priority for visits to residents/tenants.
  • All visits must be scheduled in advance with Gardenside or Cedarwood.
  • Visitation times will be limited and will be offered on Wednesday evenings beginning July 15; Saturday afternoons beginning July 18; and Sunday evenings beginning July 19
  • Visitors must check in at the door between Gardenside & Cedarwood (signs will be placed to mark location) 5-10 minutes before their scheduled visit. Park in the West parking lot to access this door. This door is locked, so staff must open the door from inside.
  • Visitors must bring a properly fitting cloth face mask with them
  • No more than 2 visitors for a resident per visit with only 3 residents allowed visitors at a time
  • No children under the age of 14 will be allowed to visit at this time
  • Visitors will have their temperature checked and will be asked screening questions
  • Visitors will sign in before each visit
  • Staff will take the visitor to the designated location and will remind you when we need to end the visit so we can prepare for the next scheduled visitors
  • Visitors are required to keep their mask on at all times and must stay at least 6 feet away from their loved one.

Any visitors who cannot wear a mask will not be allowed entry into Gardenside for the safety of our residents. Any visitors who do not follow these guidelines will be required to leave immediately.

“Please bear with us as we begin this new process for visitation. We will continually reassess our visitation times and locations to try to best meet the needs of our residents and families. We understand that it has been extremely difficult for our residents and their loved ones these past several months. We want to bring everyone back together again, but we must keep the safety of residents our first priority,” Sutton said.

Anyone with questions about the requirements should contact Sutton at 402-729-6843.

JCH&L’s Next Women’s Health Days are July 28 and Aug. 25

Wellness Experience Offers Women a Convenient Way to Take Control of Their Health

Women’s Health Days have returned to Jefferson Community Health & Life. In just about three hours women from Jefferson County and beyond can complete their annual health checks and receive a well-deserved indulgence at the same time. Women’s Health Day is a complete wellness experience designed to make women’s health easy. Jefferson Community Health & Life is now scheduling women for the experience on Tuesdays, July 28, and Aug. 25.

The program is available at the Jefferson Community Health & Life Health Center and Fairbury Clinic on select days every month, and includes:

* Personalized guidance from an on-site Women’s Health Day navigator

* Important health screenings, including fasting lab tests, a screening mammogram and a routine annual exam to assess overall and gynecological health (lab test and mammogram results will be available before participants leave for the day, while Pap test results will be provided later by mail)

* Complimentary breakfast and a relaxing indulgence—such as an express manicure or express pedicure, for example. Offerings may vary.

* Reserved parking

“It’s so important for women to make time for their own health, but we know life sometimes gets in the way,” said Erin Starr, Chief Quality Officer. “That’s why we created Women’s Health Day—to provide a convenient way for women to get their essential health screenings all at once, while also taking time to unwind.”

All major insurance plans are accepted for screening and exams (coverage is subject to individual policy terms). JCH&L Fairbury Clinic accepts new patients.

Appointments for the Women’s Health Day experience start as early as 6:30 a.m. To schedule, call 402.729.6841.

JCH&L Burkley Fitness Center Expands Hours

JCH&L Burkley Fitness Center expanded its hours on Monday, July 6. The center is now open Monday through Friday from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

A number of COVID-19 restrictions remain in place.

  • The number of users in the facility at one time is limited. The number of users in the weight room, pool and hot tub at one time also remain limited. Pool and hot tub use by appointment.
  • Users enter through an alternate entrance (through the basketball court.)
  • All facility users are screened.
  • Basketball court remains closed to activities.
  • No group fitness classes.
  • No access for members or guests to the health center from the fitness center.

“We are happy to be able to expand our hours, and thank our members for their patience throughout this pandemic,” said Craig Bontrager, Burkley Fitness Center director. “We are following the guidelines set out by the governor, and are working hard to keep our members and staff safe.”

Members are encouraged to watch JCH&L’s Facebook, Twitter and website for updates.

Golf Tournament to Benefit Jefferson Community Health & Life

A charity golf tournament to benefit Jefferson Community Health & Life has been set for Friday, Aug. 7, at the Fairbury Country Club.

A few changes are being made this year to be in compliance with county Directed Health Measures, state guidelines, and CDC recommendations. This year’s tournament will be a two-person scramble. The 18-hole tournament will feature cash prizes along with pin prizes and will begin with an 8:45 a.m. shotgun start.

The entry fee is $200 per team. The field is limited to a maximum of 27 teams. The entry fee includes grab-and-go breakfast and coffee beginning at 7:30 a.m., boxed lunch, gifts for all golfers, mulligans and chances at pin prizes.

Hole sponsorships are also available. Sponsorship is $475 and entitles the sponsor to recognition at the hole sponsored and on the tournament program, and one team entry.

A raffle will also be available for those who choose to donate.

Tournament proceeds are not designated to specific projects, and have been used for a variety of projects at Jefferson Community Health & Life over the years. One large project made possible by unrestricted funds was funding $200,000 (about half the cost) of a new X-ray machine which is safer, faster, more efficient and more comfortable for patients.

Jefferson Community Health & Life, named a Top 20 Critical Access Hospital for Quality by Chartis Center for Rural Health in 2020, operates a 17-bed, acute-care Critical Access Hospital in Fairbury, Neb., offering inpatient and outpatient services, including surgery, therapy, screenings, and emergency services. Jefferson Community Health & Life offers additional health and life services, including Fairbury and Plymouth clinics (primary and family care), Burkley Fitness Center, Gardenside (long-term care), and Home Health services. In addition, Jefferson Community Health & Life supports numerous education programs and support groups.

Entry forms are available by contacting Lana Likens, director of public relations, at 402-729-6855, or email lana.likens@jchealthandlife.org.

JCH&L Partners with the State of Nebraska to Expand Testing

Leveraging TestNebraska’s infrastructure, Nebraska is scaling widespread COVID-19 testing

FAIRBURY, NEToday, we are announcing a partnership with the State of Nebraska to provide free COVID-19 testing to eligible residents. Residents of Nebraska can take an online assessment through the TestNebraska portal, and if eligible receive a free test from our hospital.

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Nebraskans have been asking for more widespread access to testing. The State’s partnership with Nomi Health provides our hospital with access to a pre-existing supply chain of testing that works, project management, and clinical expertise in collaboration with our hospital staff to get the job done. Our hospital and public health systems across the state needed immediate access to scarce resources, high-quality testing equipment, an efficient process, which this partnership delivers.

“Jefferson Community Health & Life is pleased to partner with the state to make free COVID-19 testing available for those who are eligible through Test Nebraska,” said Burke Kline, DHA, JCH&L CEO.

Test Nebraska will be held at JCH&L on Tuesdays from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. beginning Tuesday, July 7. Appointments are required through TestNebraska.com. Those who have appointments are asked to drive up at the main entrance (circle drive.) Please don’t arrive more than 5 minutes before your appointment time, and stay in your car with the windows up until you reach the sampling area and are given instructions.