Archives for July 2011

Welcome Emily Tracey, PA-C to Rushford and Winona Clinics

Emily Tracey, PA-C

Emily Tracey, a certified physician assistant (PA-C), has joined Winona Health’s Family Practice Department and will see patients of all ages at both Rushford and Winona Clinics beginning mid-August.

“We’re excited to have a new healthcare provider with hours dedicated to two of the communities we serve,” said Marti Bollman, administrative leader for Primary Care Clinics. “Emily will be a welcome addition to our team both in Rushford and in Winona.”

Emily is certified by the National Commission on the Certification of Physician Assistants. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Physician Assistant Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Madison, Wis. Prior to joining Winona Health, she was caring for patients at Aurora HealthCare Greater Green Bay Community Clinics in Shawano, Bonduel, Seymour and Pulaski, Wis.

“I’m looking forward to building relationships with patients in Rushford and Winona,” said Emily. “I prefer working in a smaller, personalized setting where you really get to know your patients and their families. I enjoy working with and supporting individuals in their efforts to improve or maintain their health.”

Emily is a fellow of the American Academy of Physician Assistants. She has been active in service projects including providing care at the Rock River Free Clinic in Jefferson, Wis. and at Heartland Hospice in De Pere, Wis. She also was involved in the Zambia Project in which she worked in schools in Zambia and helped plan and implement programs to raise funds to support schools providing education to orphans and vulnerable children.

To schedule an appointment with Emily at Rushford Clinic, call 507.864.7726. For an appointment with Emily at Winona Clinic, call 507.454.3680.

Step into Summer 2010

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Winona Health Auxiliary to host books and gifts fundraiser

Winona Health Auxiliary will be hosting a new book fair through Books Are Fun, Wednesday, July 27 and Thursday, July 28 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. in the Winona Clinic lobby at Winona Health, 859 Mankato Avenue, Winona.

The sale features a wide variety of high quality new books and products that inform, enrich, entertain, and inspire people of all ages. The Books Are Fun product selection includes New York Times bestsellers; children’s storybooks, classics and educational books; stationery and gift items; and general interest books such as cooking, sports, gardening, reference and multicultural titles. These reasonably priced books are great for summer reading and make great gifts.

All proceed from the event will go towards Auxiliary projects including the purchase of a new colonscope and gastroscope in addition to healthcare professional scholarships. For more information, please contact the Winona Health Volunteer Office at 507.474.3328.

Winona Health to welcome several new healthcare providers

Winona Health has recruited several new healthcare providers who will be joining the Winona community over the next several months.

“There is a nation-wide demand for healthcare providers and we are extremely fortunate to attract these excellent professionals to our area,” said Rachelle Schultz, Winona Health president/CEO. “It speaks volumes about what the Winona community has to offer.”

Schultz notes that recruitment efforts are ongoing. To date, the following providers are joining Winona Health:


  • Judith McElhiney, MD, Hospitalist
  • Mary Peterson, NP, Internal Medicine, Palliative Care and Hospice


  • Nicole Varela, MD, Anesthesiologist
  • Sarah Lallaman, DO, Pediatrician


  • Sandhya Behera, MD, Family Practice


  • Heather Repinski, NP, Family Practice
  • Katie Frie, NP, Internal Medicine and nursing home care
  • Mary Klonecki, NP, Family Practice
  • Carol Powell, MD, Psychiatry and Sleep Medicine

In addition, Emily Tracey, PA, will be joining the Family Practice Department and will see patients in Rushford and Winona. Emily’s start date has not been finalized, but it is anticipated to be sometime in August.

Recruitment efforts continue to bring more primary care providers to the Winona area. Additional providers are scheduled for on-site interviews and tours of the Winona community. Schultz notes that the recruitment cycle for primary care providers may now range from one year to two years or longer.

To schedule an appointment with a healthcare provider in Winona, call 507.454.3680. To learn more about Winona Health explore our website. Be among the first to learn of news and events at Winona Health by joining us on Facebook.

Winona Community Health Clinic to be open Monday, August 1

The Winona Community Health Clinic will be open from 11 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Monday, August 1. The clinic is located on the second floor of the Parkview Office Building on the Winona Health campus, 855 Mankato Avenue in Winona. Services are offered on a walk-in basis, no appointment is necessary.

The goal of the Winona Community Health Clinic is to provide early prevention screenings and education to help individuals avoid more significant health risks and problems. Services are available to those who are uninsured who do not have the financial means to pay for healthcare services.

The Winona Community Health Clinic, a collaboration between Winona Health, Winona County Public Health and Winona State University, is open one day every three months and is free to qualified individuals ages two and up. The next clinic date will be in November.

During hours of operation, the Winona Community Health Clinic can be reached at 507.457.8585.

Those who have questions may call Winona Health at 507.454.3650.

Winona Health again earns Quality Respiratory Care Recognition

Winona Health has again earned Quality Respiratory Care Recognition (QRCR). Fewer than 15% of the 5,000 hospitals in the U.S. have been named a Quality Respiratory Care hospital, and Winona Health has achieved this recognition annually since 2003.

Hospitals earning the QRCR designation ensure patient safety by adhering to a strict set of criteria governing their respiratory care services. To qualify for the recognition, hospitals must meet strict criteria including the following conditions:

  • Respiratory therapists are available 24 hours.
  • A doctor of medicine or osteopathy is designated as medical director of respiratory care services.
  • All respiratory therapists employed by the hospital to deliver bedside respiratory care services are either legally recognized by the state as competent to provide respiratory care services or hold the CRT or RRT credential.

Respiratory therapists are specially trained healthcare professionals who work under physician’s orders to provide a wide range of breathing treatments and other services to people with asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis, lung cancer and other lung or lung-related conditions. They are key members of lifesaving response teams charged with handling medical emergencies.

Winona Health respiratory care providers are: David Beck, Tony Butterfield, Robert Elam, Kenneth Fordahl, Gary Haggerty, Kelly Haines, Tony Hibbard, Penny Kessler, Aleisha Leger, Kim McGuire, David Oliver, Carolyn Standlee-Hanson and Alberta Stetter.

The QRCR program was started by the American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC) in 2003. The program intends to help patients and families make informed decisions about the quality of the respiratory care services available in hospitals.

For more information about Winona Health, visit online at, join Winona Health on Facebook or follow Winona Health on Twitter.

Winona Health Foundation Ben & Adith Miller Classic set for Monday, August 8, welcomes golf pro Blair O’Neal

Golf pro Blair O'Neal, winner of the Golf Channel's 2010 Big Break competition, will be the golf pro at this year's Ben & Adith Miller Golf Classic at the Cedar Valley Golf Course on Monday, August 8, with a special exhibition open to the public at 10 a.m.

Winona Health Foundation’s event benefits local Patient Care Fund

The Ben & Adith Miller Golf Classic, Winona Health Foundation’s premier fundraising event benefiting the Ben & Adith Miller Patient Care Fund, will be Monday, August 8, at Cedar Valley Golf Course.

In addition to the 18-hole Main Event, the full day of activities includes a public golf exhibition, a 9-hole Youth Tournament for golfers ages 10 to 18 in the morning, and the Green Monster Challenge, a 9-hole scramble during the afternoon.

This year’s event features golf pro Blair O’Neal sponsored by Wells Fargo. O’Neal was winner of the Golf Channel’s 2010 Big Break competition and was one of the longest hitters in college golf-NCAA Long Drive Champion two out of three years. She turned pro in 2004 and is a member of the LPGA (Ladies Professional Golf Association) Futures Tour. She will give an exhibition open to the public at 10 a.m. and entertain event participants later in the day.

The Main Event begins at 11 a.m. with registration and an outdoor lunch from the grill. The shotgun start is at noon, and the format is a four-person scramble. There will be hole prizes and competition prizes, followed by a reception and exhibition by O’Neal and awards banquet at Cedar Valley Restaurant. Participation in the main event is through a hole sponsorship only, which is $2,500 and includes the above, plus refreshments on the course, participation gift, and photo of your foursome.

The Green Monster Challenge begins at 12:15 with registration and a light lunch at Cedar Valley Restaurant. After lunch, participants will head out on carts for a 1:30 shotgun start on Cedar Valley’s Green Monster. The format is a four-person scramble with hole prizes and competition prizes. Registration is $100 per person and includes lunch, refreshments on the course, a participation gift and a photo of your foursome. Hole sponsorships are available for $500 and include registration for four.

The Youth Tournament begins at 7 a.m. with registration and continental breakfast. The Youth Tournament, open to boys and girls ages 11 through 18, features a four-person scramble with prizes. Registration is $10 per person. Young golfers can register in teams or as individuals to be assigned to a foursome.

Registration for the Youth Tournament and the Green Monster Challenge is open through Friday, July 29. Both the Youth Tournament and the Green Monster Challenge are presented by Merchants Bank.

In 2010 the event raised a record $180,000 for the Foundation’s Ben & Adith Miller Patient Care Fund. The Patient Care Fund helps individuals and families pay for medical expenses.

For more information about the Ben & Adith Miller Classic or the Patient Care Fund, visit or contact the Winona Health Foundation at 507.474.3328 or

Pillow cleaning fundraiser at Lake Winona Manor Thursday, July 14

The Lake Winona Manor Resident Council is sponsoring its annual Pillow Cleaning Service Thursday, July 14, from 7:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. Proceeds from this fundraiser are used by the Lake Winona Manor Resident Council.

Kraft Pillow Services’ mobile unit will be at Lake Winona Manor to clean and renovate your pillows, including replacing the ticking, so they’ll look and feel like new again.

Drop off pillows at the lakeside entrance to Lake Winona Manor, 865 Mankato Avenue, on the Winona Health campus, between 7:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Thursday, July 14, and your pillows will be renovated and back on your bed the same day.

All types of pillows can be cleaned including foam, Dacron and feather pillows. The service includes removing, disinfecting and deodorizing the pillow’s stuffing and placing it into new ticking. You also can have feather beds made into pillows.

For more information about the pillow cleaning service, contact Kraft Pillow Service at 712.378.2918 or e-mail

For information about Lake Winona Manor, visit or call 507.457.4366.

Winona Health Recognized for Performance Excellence

The Minnesota Council for Quality announces recipients of 2010 Minnesota Quality Award

The Minnesota Council for Quality recently honored Winona Health as one of two 2010 Quality Award recipients. The Quality Award recognizes Minnesota’s leading organizations that are systematically improving results. The award is based on the Malcolm Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence and is the culmination of a rigorous evaluation of an organization’s management system. Evaluation criteria includes leadership, strategic planning, customer-focused processes, measurement systems, workforce processes, and operations.

“The Baldrige framework and the Minnesota Quality Award have helped us continually evaluate our performance from a systemic or holistic perspective,” says Rachelle Schultz, CEO of Winona Health. “We believe that our clinical outcomes are very good, but we found that a framework like Baldrige along with other quality tools help us to improve other aspects of our system – things like our workforce, our leadership, our planning, and our use of data.  Achieving high performance outcomes requires managing the whole system, and this process is the best at helping us to do that.”

The other organization receiving the 2010 Award was Memorial Blood Centers (St. Paul). The organizations were recognized on May 18 in a celebration at the Landmark Center in St. Paul, attended by nearly 350 Minnesota leaders.

Brian Lassiter, president of the Minnesota Council for Quality said, “These organizations have committed leaders, visions for the future, and a sharp focus on their customers and stakeholders. Their efforts are improving productivity, competitiveness, and outcomes of Minnesota organizations.”

There are four award categories – commitment, advancement, achievement and excellence – to honor the appropriate stage of their improvement journey. Winona Health received an achievement award. Since 1991, 116 Minnesota organizations have received recognition.

Winona Health Supports Time Out for Every Patient, Every Time

Patients in Winona can be assured their healthcare providers take every precaution to ensure safe surgical procedures and safety for every patient.

Prior to the start of every surgical procedure, the Winona Health surgical team, including an anesthesiologist and surgeon, pause to confirm that the patient, the surgical site, and the procedure are all correct. The pause is called “Time Out.”

“Even though we haven’t had a wrong-site surgical error here at Winona Health, we continue to adopt research-based best practices to help ensure that it never happens,” said Heather Matejka, director of Surgical Services at Winona  Health. “Winona Health implemented this time out process more than 10 years ago, and we go through this safety check for every patient, every time.”

A recent report by The Joint Commission indicates errors such as wrong patient, wrong surgery site and wrong procedure were the third most frequent sentinel event in 2010.  The Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) launched National Time Out Day in 2004 to support the protocol and build greater awareness among surgical team members. Its goal is to prevent errors by ensuring all physicians, nurses, and surgical technologists pause before all invasive procedures so they can communicate as a group and confirm key information about the patient and procedure.

As further evidence of Winona Health’s exceptional safety procedures, the Surgery Department recently earned a Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA) Patient Safety Excellence Award for implementing documented best practices around both the counting of and accounting for all items used during invasive procedures. The recommended actions are compiled in the SAFE ACCOUNT Roadmap to Preventing Retained Objects in the O.R. The MHA Patient Safety Excellence Award is given to facilities that have achieved implementation of more than 90 percent of the recommended actions.

“The entire Surgery Department staff is involved in implementing the best practice guidelines,” said Matejka. “Patient safety is our highest priority, and each surgical case requires constant, diligent focus on every detail of a procedure. Our staff has an excellent process in place to ensure safety.”

The Time Out campaign is led by the Minnesota Safe Surgery Coalition. Founding partners of the coalition are: the MHA, the Minnesota Department of Health, the Minnesota Medical Association, the Minnesota Medical Group Management Association and the MMIC Group, formerly the Minnesota Medical Insurance Exchange.

For more information about Winona Health, visit the Quality and Safety page of our website.