Archives for May 2016

Scholarships for high school seniors announced

Winona Health is pleased to announce the 2016 recipients of the Winona Health Scholarship Program for Graduating High School Seniors Seeking a Career in Healthcare. Twelve area students were chosen based on a review of their healthcare career goals, academic excellence and community service experience. Each winner receives a $1000 scholarship for their first year in college that can be renewed up to four years if specific conditions are met. The recipients and career pursuits include:

Cotter High School:

  • Jonah Spiten, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Radiology
  • Morgan Whyte, Carleton College – Biology & Neurology

Winona Senior High School:

  • Tyler Beck, University of Wisconsin, La Crosse – Physician Assistant
  • Ashley Brommerich, Winona State University, Biology-Psychology/premed
  • Madison Duellman, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, Nursing
  • Hayley Gerdes, Southwest Minnesota State University, Optometry
  • Halle Hoeppner, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, Physician Assistant/biology
  • Caitlyn Koscianski, University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, Orthopedics
  • Brenna Meyer, Viterbo University, Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Katie Tschumper, Chippewa Valley Technical College/WSU – Diagnostic Medical Sonography
  • Emma Walsky, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities – Biology/pre-med

Rushford/Peterson Senior High School:

  • Bailey O’Hare, St. Mary’s University. Biology/pre-med

Greg Evans joins Winona Health board of directors

Greg Evans

Greg Evans

“I truly believe that one of the fundamental cornerstones of any strong community is access to a strong primary care healthcare system,” said Greg Evans, who joined the Winona Health board of directors in May.

A Winona native, Evans is Merchants Bank’s President/Chief Banking Officer and is responsible for direct market oversight in Winona and ultimately responsible for operation and performance of 21 locations in 19 communities throughout Merchants’ service area of southeastern Minnesota and west-central Wisconsin.

Evans said he chose to join the Winona Health board because, “Our community is fortunate to have independent Winona Health as a strong and progressive healthcare organization. Community leaders in Winona have demonstrated the importance of this institution in Winona for generations. As someone who grew up in this community and recognizes the importance of Winona Health’s impact on the community’s vitality and wellness, I hope to contribute in a meaningful way to the continued strength and sustainability of Winona Health and its ability to serve the region.”

Evans is a past chair of the Ben & Adith Miller Golf Classic, and he has been active with Winona Health’s Community Engagement Committee for the past year. He also was instrumental in a development effort to raise money for Winona Health’s Pediatrics department as part of Merchants Bank’s Commercial Banker Team participation in Dancing with the Winona Stars in 2015.

He and his wife, Terri, also a Winona native, have two children and four grandchildren.

In addition to Greg Evans, the Winona Health board includes Ken Mogren, chair; Scott Biesanz; Steve Blue; Scott Birdsall, MD; Matthew Broghammer, DO; Sandra Burke; Vicki Decker; Richard Ferris, MD; Toni Highum; Hugh Miller; Daniel Parker, MD; Rachelle Schultz, president/CEO; Kim Schwab; and Mark Wagner.

The Winona Health board is composed of community members elected to serve on the board on a volunteer basis. The board is responsible for establishing Winona Health’s strategic direction; quality and safety; financial oversight; and setting organizational policy. Board members are committed to guiding Winona Health in its mission to improve the health and wellbeing of the greater Winona area community while remaining a strong and independent, not-for-profit community-owned healthcare system.

RSVP for a free, 30-minute Hands Only CPR Workshop

Saturday, June 4, Helen Bagshaw, CCRN, will offer free Hands Only CPR workshops to teach you, your friends and family how to help someone having sudden cardiac arrest.

The workshops will be informative and fun. All ages 12 and older are welcome. Those under age 18 must be accompanied by an adult.

The workshops will be in Winona Health’s B.A. Miller Auditorium on the hospital third floor, 855 Mankato Avenue in Winona, Minn.

“People may be surprised to learn that saving someone’s life doesn’t require mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Hands only CPR is easy to learn, and you never know when you may have the opportunity to save a life,” says Bagshaw, a Winona Health ICU nurse. She also will share information about what to do when someone is choking and how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED).

Here are a few good reasons to sign up:

  • 89% of cardiac arrests happen at home.
  • ‘Hands Only CPR’ can double or triple a victim’s chance of survival.
  • Each year, sudden cardiac arrest causes more deaths than lung cancer, breast cancer and AIDS combined.
The 30-minute workshops are fun, educational and you could make a difference for someone you love. Space is limited so registration is required either online or by calling 507.457.4161.

Register online for one of these Saturday, June 4 workshops:

8:30 a.m. Click here to register online.

9:15 a.m. Click here to register online.

10 a.m. Click here to register online.

10:45 a.m. Click here to register online.

11:30 a.m. Click here to register online.

Health Talk: Children with Sensory Conditions

Free Health Talk, Thursday, June 16, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m.

Sensory Integration is the ability to process information from the world around us. In typical development, this happens without having to think about it, but some children have difficulty. This can lead to a variety of challenging behaviors from intense negative reactions to certain things such as sensitivity to loud noises or needing to continuously move. What’s “normal,” and what may indicate a need for help?

Occupational Therapists Kyann Brown and Emily Breunig will share information about how sensory processing can affect a child’s behavior and how it may be addressed at a Free Health Talk: Is this “normal?” Children with Sensory Conditions, Thursday, June 16, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. in the B. A. Miller Auditorium at Winona Health, 855 Mankato Avenue in Winona.

RSVP is requested by Tuesday, June 14. To RSVP for this Health Talk and to learn more about Spirit of Women at Winona Health including the many free benefits, click below or call 507.457.4161.

Learn about Spirit RSVP for this Health Talk




Generosity in action: Winona Health Volunteers Carol Hill Scholarship recipients announced

This year’s scholarships total $20,000

The 2016-2017 Winona Health Volunteers Carol Hill Scholarship committee has awarded $20,000 in scholarships to nine students, all of whom have been accepted into an accredited healthcare program.

Carol Hill Scholarship funds are raised through the generous support of Volunteer events including the Birthday Ball, $5 Jewelry & Accessories Sale, Fantasy of Trees, Basket Bonanza and Holiday Happiness, along with sales from the Glady D. Miller Gift Shop. Since the Winona Health Volunteers awarded its first nursing scholarship in 1962, more than $600,000 has been awarded to area students as they study to become caregivers.

The Winona Health Volunteers are pleased to help these students as they begin their education in healthcare or as they work toward completing their healthcare program.

Congratulations to the 2016-2017 Winona Health Volunteers Carol Hill Scholarship recipients:

Krystin Anderson, Winona State University, Winona, Minn.

Shawn Carlson, Winona State University, Winona, Minn.

Lauren Flanagan, Chamberlain College of Nursing, Downers Grove, Ill.

Halle Haedtke, Luther College, Decorah, Iowa

Nicole Haedtke, Winona State University, Winona, Minn.

Anna Hudson, University of Wisconsin, La Crosse, Wis.

Lisa McCabe-Evans, Winona State University, Winona, Minn.

Michelle Steinfeldt, Viterbo University, La Crosse, Wis.

Anna Suhr, University of Wisconsin, La Crosse, Wis.

This scholarship is named for Carol Hill, retired director of Winona Health Volunteer Services, in honor of her long-standing service.

The scholarship committee members are: Kris Cichon, RN, BSN, Winona Health director of Inpatient Services; Janet Thewis, Minnesota State College Southeast Technical Nursing Department; Jessica Muras, RN, Winona Health Lake Winona Manor; Maureen Gerson, Winona State University Nursing Department; and Kris Walters, Winona Health Volunteer Services.

Anyone wishing more information about becoming a Winona Health Volunteer can contact Winona Health’s Volunteer Services office at 507.474.3328.


Volunteers raising funds for dialysis chairs

The Winona Health Volunteers are raising funds to make life a little more comfortable for people who need dialysis. Learn more about why they chose to do this and how their generosity makes a difference.

Watch the video

Thank you for supporting the Winona Health Volunteers’ activities and events (including shopping at the Glady D. Miller Gift Shop)!

Learn more about Winona Health Volunteers and volunteer opportunities here.

Tips for preventing falls

Bethany Corliss da Rocha, MD

Bethany Corliss da Rocha, MD, Trauma Co-director


During May, which is National Trauma Awareness Month, Winona Health is offering tips on fall prevention.

Millions of people are affected by falls every year, and they are the leading cause of traumatic injury for older Americans. Among older adults nationwide, one in five falls results in a serious injury, like broken bones or head trauma.

The American Trauma Society reports that every 13 seconds, an older adult is treated in an emergency department because of a fall, which amounts to 2.5 million injuries a year. As the population ages, the financial toll of such falls is expected to increase, and may reach $67.7 billion by 2020—and the personal toll these injuries may take on individuals and families is immeasurable.

“Falling shouldn’t be considered a normal part of aging,” says Bethany Corliss da Rocha, MD, trauma co-director at Winona Health. “Muscle weakness, vision problems, low blood pressure upon standing, foot problems, slowing reflexes, and even some medications can increase the likelihood of a fall, but there are other causes that are more easily managed. Controlling some of these risk factors reduces a person’s risk for falling.”

Falls can occur anywhere, but about sixty percent happen at home, usually while a person is doing normal daily activities. The National Institutes of Health recommends tips for “fall-proofing” your home to minimize risks.

  • Remove anything that could cause you to trip while walking. Clutter, pet bowls, loose rugs, small pieces of furniture and electrical cords can all be tripping hazards.
  • Arrange furniture in such a way that you have clear space in which to walk. Remove loose items from stairs, hallways and pathways.
  • Make sure that rugs are secured to the floor and the stairs. Remove throw rugs, or attach them securely to the floor with double sided tape
  • Clean up wet spills immediately, and avoid walking on wet floors.
  • Put non-slip strips or a rubber mat in the bathtub or shower. Attach secure, properly placed grab bars in the bathroom to aid in getting in and out of the tub or shower.
  • Spread salt or sand on icy or snowy outdoor surfaces. Wear boots with good traction if you must go out when it snows, or try to stay indoors until conditions improve.
  • Make sure rooms, entrances, walkways and stairways are well-lit. Use the highest wattage light bulbs your fixtures will allow. Light switches at both the top and bottom of stairs can be helpful.
  • Use handrails on stairs. If you must carry something on the stairs, use one hand to hold the item and one on the railing. Be sure you can see where your feet are stepping.
  • Place night lights in the bathroom, hall, bedroom and kitchen. Have a lamp within reach of your bed, as well as a flashlight in case the power goes out.
  • Rearrange the items you use most frequently so they are within easy reach. Avoid standing on chairs or step stools to reach everyday items.

Winona Health offers “A Matter of Balance,” a free four-week class that focuses on fall prevention. The next class will take place on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from July 12 to August 3. Class size is limited. To register, click here, or call call 507.453.3741.

Falls are also a leading cause of non-fatal injury in children younger than age 14. Infants and toddlers are at increased risk for falling from windows, stairs and furniture, and older children are at risk for falling from playground equipment and recreational equipment including bikes and skateboards. Parents and guardians are encouraged to assess areas for risk and to ensure children are wearing helmets and other recommended safety gear.

Register for A Matter of Balance



Thank you Volunteers!

Jenny Kahl and Mary Brenno

Jenny Kahl and Mary Brenno

Winona Health honored the Winona Heath Volunteers at the annual Volunteer Appreciation banquet on Friday, April 22. Nearly 160 people attended.

Volunteer of the Year awards were presented to Bonnie Kelly, Julieanne Schwemer and Marlene Mulrooney, for their dedication to and passion for making a difference to the community through volunteering at Winona Health.

The Legacy Award was presented to Kim Schwab, Winona Health Volunteers president, for her

Kim Schwab, Marlene Mulrooney, Julianne Schwemer and Bonnie Kelly

Kim Schwab, Marlene Mulrooney, Julianne Schwemer and Bonnie Kelly

superior leadership and exuberant commitment to the mission. In addition, 64 volunteers earned service awards. The service awards recognize volunteers for reaching milestones in the total number of hours they have given to Winona Health, ranging from 100 to 11,000 hours. Jenny Kahl and Mary Brenno were recognized for 11,000 hours of service.

For more information about the Winona Health Volunteers, including descriptions of volunteer opportunities, click here.


Introducing: Live Well, Eat Well!

Live Well Winona and Winona Health launch Live Well, Eat Well program
Blooming Grounds first area restaurant to offer Live Well, Eat Well options

Live Well Winona, Winona Health and select area restaurants will make it easier for people to choose healthy food while dining out.

The new Live Well, Eat Well program is a collaborative effort to help area restaurants revise menu favorites. The foods will meet specific health criteria by cutting the amount of fat, sugar and calories—but not the appeal.

Live Well, Eat Well partners are committed to sharing the ingredients and nutritional information, so diners can make an informed choice,” says Winona Health dietitian Anna Hudson. “That’s how we make the healthy choice the easy choice.”

The first restaurant to implement the Live Well, Eat Well program is Blooming Grounds, a local coffee house and eatery with locations downtown and in the Winona Mall. Blooming Grounds will introduce their Live Well, Eat Well menu on Saturday, May 14 to coincide with Winona’s Play Streets and Touch a Truck event sponsored by Winona Health Healthy Kids, Live Well Winona and Winona Main Street. All Eat Well, Live Well menu options will be $1 off Saturday and Sunday, May 14 and 15.

“We decided to be a Live Well, Eat Well partner because this is another way we can give customers what they want,” says Amy Jo Marks, Blooming Grounds owner. “I think there is a shift with people wanting to know more about what they’re eating. We want to be transparent with nutrition information to help people make healthier choices.”

The details:

Live Well, Eat Well options focus on healthy ingredients, delicious food and satisfying portions. Menu items are reviewed by a Winona Health dietitian. The Live Well, Eat Well logo next to menu items ensures that the selection meets the following criteria:

  • 600 calories or fewer
  • 35 percent or fewer calories from fat (or fewer than 15 grams of fat)
  • 10 percent or fewer calories from saturated fat
  • 100 mg or less cholesterol
  • 800 mg or less of sodium
  • 3 g or more of fiber

“If it’s not delicious, people won’t order it,” adds Marks. “So our customers can be sure that menu items are staff tested and approved.”

Janneke Sobeck, Live Well Winona community wellness director, is looking forward to helping other area restaurants become Live Well, Eat Well partners. “Working with Winona Health’s nutrition experts, we make it as easy as possible to learn how to alter entrees to maintain the flavor while meeting the health criteria. Or, we can also offer options for new entrees to give customers more choices.”

Live Well, Eat Well restaurants will display the Live Well, Eat Well logo and indicate which of their menu items fit the specific nutrition criteria.

Look for the Live Well, Eat Well logo in participating restaurants. For more information about Live Well, Eat Well or about becoming a Live Well, Eat Well partner:

Live Well, Eat Well




Free help with Healthcare Directives

Do your loved ones know what you want?

Winona Health Volunteers offer free Healthcare Directives program Monday, May 16

Winona Health Volunteers invite community members to a free informational program about Healthcare Directives (also called Advance Directives) on Monday, May 16, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Parkview Conference Room on the hospital first floor at Winona Health, 855 Mankato Avenue in Winona.

The program provides information about the benefits of having a Healthcare Directive. A properly completed Healthcare Directive is a legal document, but completing a directive does not require a lawyer. The primary purpose of a Healthcare Directive is to allow individuals to stay in control of their care, even if they lose the ability to communicate. Winona Health Volunteers certified to facilitate this program will provide the authorized forms. Sessions cover Healthcare Directives for residents of Minnesota and Wisconsin.

A follow-up session will be held Monday, June 6, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the same location for those who have attended a Healthcare Directives Informational Session but have questions or would like assistance in completing their directive or to have a facilitator review their directive.

There is no cost to complete a Healthcare Directive and the program is open to all. No advanced registration is required. Everyone age 18 and older is encouraged to complete a Healthcare Directive.

Our certified Healthcare Directive volunteers are also available to give presentations to community groups. For more information, call the Winona Health Volunteer Services office at 507.474.3328.