Flu shot update

Beginning Monday, October 27, Winona Health will offer flu shots on a walk-in basis Monday through Friday, between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. on the second floor of the clinic at 855 Mankato Avenue in Winona.

Insurance will be filed, or individuals may pay $32 at time of check in. Those under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

Children age 8 and under who did not receive a flu vaccine during last year’s flu season may need a second vaccine 30 days after receiving the first vaccine dose. Please check with your primary healthcare provider if you have questions regarding dosage.

Healthcare providers recommend that all infants over six months, children and adults, including women who are pregnant, get a flu vaccine. Getting vaccinated not only helps protect you from the flu, it helps protect those you come in contact with.

More information about influenza is available on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

To schedule an appointment with a Primary Care provider at Winona Health, call 507.454.3680.

Simple measures can help prevent spread of influenza

 Influenza can range from being an uncomfortable inconvenience to being a severe illness. The healthcare team at Winona Health encourages the following habits to help you prevent getting or spreading colds or flu.

  • Cover you mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing, then throw the tissue away and wash your hands. If a tissue is not available, cough or sneeze into your elbow or upper sleeve rather than into your hands.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water thoroughly after coughing or sneezing, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. If you have young children, start early with teaching them to wash their hands and help them as necessary.
  • Wash your hands after returning home from work, shopping or any public place.
  • Use a sanitizing wipe on items in your car or home that are frequently touched such as cabinet and doorknobs, the refrigerator handle, phones (including cell phones), light switches, remote controls and keyboards.
  • Protect others: Do not visit people in the hospital or living in long-term care residences, and limit visiting other people and places if you are experiencing cold or flu-like symptoms.
  • Take care of yourself: Stay home, drink plenty of fluids and get more rest if you begin experiencing cold or flu symptoms. It’s not just good for you, it’s good for everyone else as well.

When to seek medical attention for a sick child

It’s natural for parents to be concerned when their child is ill, but how do you decide whether you should see your healthcare provider?

Give your child more time for rest when they are sick. If your child’s energy level is down and you think they’ll have a hard time focusing in class, it’s probably best to keep them home to rest and get plenty of fluids.

If your child has a severe sore throat, especially if accompanied by a fever, aches and upset stomach without other typical cold symptoms, call your primary care provider about getting a strep test.

Severe illness may warrant a visit to your primary care provider, the Urgent Care Clinic or the Emergency Department. 

If you have concerns or if something doesn’t seem right, call your primary healthcare provider or bring your child to the Urgent Care Clinic or hospital Emergency Department.

The Centers for Disease Control noted the following pediatric “emergency warning signs” need medical attention:

  • Fast breathing or trouble breathing
  • Bluish skin color
  • Not drinking enough fluids
  • Not waking up or not interacting
  • Being so irritable that the child does not want to be held
  • Flu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough
  • Fever with a rash

If you have concerns or if something doesn’t seem right, call your primary healthcare provider or bring your child to the Urgent Care Clinic or hospital Emergency Department.

Symptoms of a Cold versus Flu





Rare in adults & older children, but can be as high as 102o F in infants and small children

Usually 102o F, but can go up to 104o F and usually lasts 3-4 days



Sudden onset & can be severe

Muscle aches


Usual & often severe

Tiredness & weakness


Can last 2 or more weeks

Extreme exhaustion


Sudden onset & can be severe

Runny nose






Sore throat




Mild, hacking cough

Usual & can become severe




All ages invited to Kairos Alive! Dance Hall

Winona Health invites community members of all ages to a Kairos Alive! Dance Hall, Monday, October 27 from 6:30 to 8 p.m., when the first floor of the clinic at Winona Health, 859 Mankato Avenue, will turn into the Dance Hall with music by Ron’s Old Time Band.

Kairos Alive is an award-winning, intergenerational community program that brings people together and integrates the arts to improve overall wellness.

“No matter how you feel when you arrive, you will feel better before you leave,” said Emilie Volkman, a master social worker with Winona Health. “A Dance Hall event is an opportunity to come together to enjoy live music and each other’s company. Those who come may participate as much or as little as they like.”

Whether you used to like to dance, still like to dance, or just wish to observe and enjoy the music, you’ll be glad you came. People of all ages and abilities are encouraged to attend. This program is for everyone and anyone who wants to listen to music, laugh and feel better.

Watch a video of a previous Dance Hall, or to learn more about Kairos Alive! Click here or call Emilie Volkman 507.453.3770.




Holiday Happiness starts Nov. 5!

The Winona Health Auxiliary’s annual Holiday Happiness will be November 5 through 8 on the Winona Health campus, 855 Mankato Avenue in Winona.

The B.A. Miller Auditorium on the hospital’s third floor will be transformed into a winter wonderland featuring gifts, decorations, clothing, gourmet foods and bakery treats. HealingScapes™ canvas prints will also be available for purchase.

Holiday Happiness hours:

  • Wednesday, November 5: preview and opening 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, November 6: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Friday, November 7: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Saturday, November 8: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Proceeds from Holiday Happiness go toward healthcare scholarships and enhancing the healing environment of the Winona Health Behavioral Health Inpatient Unit.

Holiday Happiness is a festive way to begin holiday shopping while supporting local healthcare.

For more information, contact the Winona Health Volunteer Office at 507.474.3328.


Welcome Nicole Beatty, MD!

Nicole Beatty, MD

Nicole Beatty, MD

Anesthesiologist Nicole Beatty, MD, has joined the Winona Health medical staff. She joins anesthesiologists Nicole Varela, MD, Amarjit Virdi, MD, and Ruth Moes, MD, along with seven certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) working with the surgeons and staff in Winona Health’s Surgery Department.

Dr. Beatty said she chose Winona Health for “Lots of reasons. I’ve observed the admirable collaboration at Winona Health, and I’ve also been impressed with its systematic efforts to improve quality which has made it recognized as a center of excellence. I’m proud to be joining this forward-thinking team and hope to contribute in a positive way.”

Dr. Beatty received her Doctor of Medicine degree from Mayo Medical School in Rochester, Minn., completed an internship in the Department of Internal Medicine at the Mayo School of Graduate Medical Education where she also completed her residency in Anesthesiology. She is a member of the American Society of Anesthesiologists, the Minnesota Society of Anesthesiologists and the Minnesota Medical Association.

Prior to earning her medical degree, Dr. Beatty was a Physician Assistant, caring for patients in the Emergency Department at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis and St. Mary’s Hospital Emergency Department in Rochester, Minn.

Dr. Beatty and her husband have three young children. She enjoys spending time with family and friends, boating and running.

For information about healthcare providers and services available at Winona Health, click on Find a Provider or call 507.454.3650.



Ebola preparedness

In light of the Ebola virus being confirmed in one patient in the United States, Winona Health administrators and medical leaders would like to update the community on Ebola preparedness and protocols in place or in progress to deal with the potential for Ebola in our community.

“Public Health systems in place the United States give us the greatest opportunities for isolation and containment to limit the spread of Ebola,” said Brett Whyte, MD, chief of Emergency and Urgent Care Services at Winona Health. “There has only been one case diagnosed in the US, and there is heightened awareness about what to be on the alert for. All healthcare professionals are committed to keeping their communities safe.”

Local preparedness for the Ebola virus:

• Winona Health has a very good infection control infrastructure already in place.

• Winona Health rigorously follows the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines and daily monitors the updates on Ebola protocols and procedures.

• Standard protocols are already in place for many aspects of infectious disease including isolation requirements and personal protective equipment (PPE).

• Winona Health has adequate PPE in all clinical areas. All clinical staff are scheduled to go through mandatory refresher training on proper use of PPE.

• Winona Health is requiring mandatory education on Ebola and infectious disease for all clinical care staff including providers and all lab personnel.

• Screening for infectious disease, like Ebola, is underway at Winona Health. Patients are being asked 1) have you or anyone you have come in contact with been out of the country in the past 21 days, and 2) do you have infectious symptoms or have you been in contact with anyone who has infectious symptoms. If either response is positive, the patient will undergo more rigorous screening. Winona Health clinical care teams have been informed about CDC protocols including 1) screening and identification of patients; 2) Isolation procedures and 3) early recognition of and risk factors for Ebola. Ongoing education and communication to our healthcare professionals will be deployed as new information emerges on the infection control practices around Ebola.

• Good hygiene is essential with this situation as with any others. And, as usual, everyone is urged to take proper hand washing procedures and get a flu shot.

• We should remember that, right now, there is only one case identified in the US – Dallas, Texas – and every healthcare organization has learned from the communication failure that occurred there.

If community members are interested in more information about the Ebola virus, comprehensive information is available on the Centers for Disease Control website: www.cdc.gov.


Breakfast with the Experts for Employers, HR and Safety Professionals

Winona Health invites employers, business owners, human resources and safety professionals to RSVP for Breakfast with the Experts: Continuous Systems Improvement (CSI) and Lean Principles.

The program is Wednesday, October 22, from 7:30 to 9 a.m. in Winona Health’s B. A. Miller Auditorium, third floor of the hospital, 855 Mankato Avenue in Winona.

Linda Wadewitz, director of Continuous Systems Improvement at Winona Health, will share information about one of the foundational concepts of the lean quality improvement methodology: PDCA. The PDCA (plan, do, check, act) cycle is a four-step model for developing, implementing and monitoring change. Learn how this circular process leads to continuous improvement through the careful monitoring and measurement of change.

A complimentary breakfast is included. There is no charge for the program; however, for planning purposes, reservations are required. RSVP by Monday, October 20 online here, or call 507.457.4161.

Breakfast with the Experts is an educational program provided quarterly by Winona Health to help area employers stay current on trends and issues related to employee safety, health and wellness.


Free Diabetes Expo: It’s a Family Affair, Sat. Oct. 25

Informative. Fun. Free!
Winona Area Diabetes Expo: It’s a Family Affair.
Get motivated to start improving your health and feeling great.

The Winona Area Diabetes Expo: It’s a Family Affair, is a free event hosted by Winona Health Diabetes and Nutrition Education staff and area Lions Clubs to help individuals with diabetes, or at risk for developing diabetes, live longer, healthier lives.

The event will be Saturday, October 25, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the clinic at Winona Health, 859 Mankato Avenue, Winona, Minn. Attendees are welcome to attend any or all of the free programs and activities.

Programs and activities include:

8:30 a.m.: Doors open, visit exhibits and free blood pressure and glucose screening. Gift bags will be given to attendees while supplies last.

9:00 a.m.: “Living Well With Diabetes” by Paula Philipps, RN, and Cassie Boddy, MSW, LGSW, from Winona Health’s Community Care Network

9:30-10:30 a.m.: Panel of Experts: Internist, Daniel Parker, MD; Pediatrician, Sarah Lallaman, DO; Obstetrician/Gynecologist and women’s health specialist, Melissa Richards, MD; and Ann Heesacker, RN, MSN, CDE.

11:00-11:30 a.m.: Cooking Demo # 1

11:30 a.m. -12:00 p.m.: Recipe Renovation by Heidi Ferris, RD, CDE

12:00-12:30 p.m.: Cooking Demo # 2

In addition, free Blood Pressure and Glucose screening all morning.

“The occurrence of diabetes is increasing at an alarming rate in this country and world-wide,” said Sue Haug, a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator with Winona Health. “The line-up of programs and presenters for this year’s free event is geared toward increasing awareness of diabetes and diabetes risks through one’s entire life.”

Risk factors for diabetes include:

• Abnormal glucose laboratory results

• Diabetes in pregnancy or giving birth to a baby weighing more than 9 pounds

• Family history of diabetes

• Excess body weight (especially around the waist)

• Low HDL cholesterol and/or high triglycerides

• High blood pressure

• Low activity level

• Poor nutrition

The event is free and no registration is required. For more information, contact Sue Haug, RD, LD, CDE, at 507.457.4521 or email shaug@winonahealth.org.




Welcome Charlotte Clark, MD

Charlotte Clark, MD

Charlotte Clark, MD

Charlotte Clark, MD, joined the Winona Health medical staff and serves as a Hospice physician.

“I chose Winona Health for this unique opportunity to focus on the important work of hospice.” said Dr. Clark. “It’s rewarding to be able to get to know people in their own environment and to learn what really matters to them. It’s a wonderful opportunity to make a difference in their lives and the lives of those who love them.”

Dr. Clark noted that many people think that hospice care is only for people when they are in their last few DAYS of life. “In reality,” said Dr. Clark. “We can do the most good when we have many MONTHS to work with patients and their families, supporting, teaching about what to expect and how to care for a person who wants to stay at home.”

Hospice provides an array of services to increase comfort such as home nurse visits, music therapy, physical therapy, nondenominational chaplain visits, assistance from social workers, home health aides, and volunteer visitors, all covered under Medicare if a person is eligible.

Prior to joining Winona Health, Dr. Clark served as an independent contractor for a life insurance paramedic services company. Her medical experience also include caring for patients as a Family Practice physician and serving as the medical director of a nursing home. She received her medical degree from the University of Wisconsin- Madison and completed her residency at University of Missouri Hospital and Clinics in Columbia, Missouri.

Winona Health Hospice Services cares for people in their homes within a 35 mile radius of Winona in Minnesota and Wisconsin. For information about hospice, call 507.4457.4468.

For information about healthcare providers at Winona Health, including a directory with photos available for download, visit winonahealth.org and click Find a Provider.




Erin Hanson, CNP, Urgent Care

Hanson_small_CMYKErin Hanson recently earned certification as a family nurse practitioner (CNP) and will transfer from the Intensive Care Unit at Winona Health to Urgent Care at 420 E. Sarnia Street in Winona.

Hanson’s professional experience includes caring for cardiothoracic surgery and transplant patients at University of Madison Hospital and Clinics, followed by seven years caring for patients in Winona Health’s Intensive Care Unit.

“Before joining Winona Health, I worked in a large tertiary hospital. When my husband and I moved back to this area from Madison, I also checked out Rochester and La Crosse,” said Hanson. “I chose Winona Health because of the interpersonal relationships and how that benefits patients. It’s a very supportive community and there are good resources available for people in this area.”

In addition to certification as a nurse practitioner, Hanson also has a doctorate of nursing practice from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, and a bachelor of science in nursing from Winona State University. She is a member of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.

Winona Health’s Urgent Care Clinic is open Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. To check current Urgent Care wait times, click here.

For more information about healthcare providers at Winona Health, click here. Winona Health is also on Facebook at Twitter.




Free Depression Screening, Thurs., Oct. 9

Winona Health is offering free walk-in depression screening on National Depression Screening Day, Thursday, October 9, 2014, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Screening will be on the second floor of the Winona Health clinic, 859 Mankato Avenue in Winona, Minn.

One out of every five adults may experience depression at some point in their lives. Depression is treatable and help is available at Winona Health.

Common symptoms of depression may include any of the following:

• A persistent feeling of sadness

• Loss of pleasure in usually enjoyable activities

• A feeling of hopelessness, helplessness and worthlessness

• Changes in sleep patterns and appetite

• Loss of energy

• Restlessness

• Thoughts of death or suicide

No appointment is necessary for this free screening. The screening process will take approximately 30 minutes. Those who have questions about depression screening can call Winona Health Psychiatric & Counseling Services at 507.454.2606.