JRMC Seeks Affiliation Agreement to Work with Sanford Health

Jamestown Regional Medical Center will pursue an affiliation agreement with Sanford Health, the JRMC Operating Board decided unanimously last week at a planning retreat.

An affiliation agreement — the lowest level of relationship Sanford offers — would allow JRMC’s local board to retain all its decision-making powers, while also allowing JRMC to offer patients more cancer care options.

“It’s all about bringing services here,” said Connie Krapp, chairman of the JRMC Operating Board.

Should the affiliation agreement be finalized, JRMC will also be able to install and use Epic, an electronic health record system already in use by the Sanford and Essentia clinics in Jamestown.

“I think Sanford wants the relationship because they have a lot of investment in the community with the two clinics,” said Todd Hudspeth, CEO of the medical center. “They want to deliver care as close to the patients’ home as possible.”

Through cooperation with the Sanford Roger Maris Cancer Center, JRMC will be able to expand its chemotherapy offerings, and eventually, radiation therapy may be offered as well.

“Three to five years out, we’ll address that,” Hudspeth said, explaining that adding radiation cancer therapy would require the hospital to invest approximately $5 million in equipment. “The long-term goal is to get that out here, but we’re going to start with medical oncology.”

Currently, very little chemotherapy occurs at JRMC. It is offered in a small space in the emergency department, Hudspeth said.

Chemotherapy is rated at four different levels, based on potential complications and strength, and JRMC offers level 1, and a little bit of level 2. The idea, Hudspeth said, is that JRMC will continue that work but offer additional levels of chemotherapy as time goes on.

In addition, cancer treatment will be moved from the emergency room to a dedicated cancer center in the JRMC’s clinic building.

The medical center has long recognized a need for more local cancer treatment, Krapp said, even before the new hospital was built.

“That’s been on the wish list for several years,” Hudspeth said.

Partnering with Sanford could potentially allow JRMC patients to participate in Sanford clinical trials at JRMC, too.

For the most part, patients who aren’t being treated for cancer likely won’t notice any changes, Hudspeth said.

Utilizing the Epic record-keeping system will mean that the JRMC’s electronic records are totally compatible with those of Sanford and Essentia clinics, both of which use the same system.

While the hospital does already have an electronic records system, it doesn’t really “talk” to the clinics’ system.

Physicians feel that the new system will help improve patient care, Hudspeth said, and it also has the potential to reduce duplicate testing, as patients’ previous lab results will all be easily accessible.

“For quality and safety, it really makes a difference,” Hudspeth said.

Recent information from the hospital’s current system will be migrated into the Epic system.

“It’ll be a lot safer, more efficient for the patient,” Krapp said.

The licensing cost for the new system is extremely high, and installation is estimated to cost approximately $1 million. Much of that — probably 70 to 80 percent — will be reimbursed by the federal government, Hudspeth said.

Under the Affordable Care Act, the hospital would eventually be penalized financially if Epic or a similar system were not installed and utilized, Hudspeth explained.

However, a hospital as small as Jamestown Regional Medical Center would not be able to license itself under Epic, because it’s not big enough, he added.

Currently, Sanford is in the process of installing Epic in all its medical facilities, Hudspeth said. JRMC would likely install it sometime next winter, using its own IT staff and the back-office support of Sanford’s computer centers in Fargo.

Talks about partnering with Sanford or other larger health systems have been going on for a long time, but they intensified after the Affordable Care Act became public, Krapp said.

“We’re seeing tremendous change in healthcare with increasing focus on the cost and efficiency of care,” said Rick Giesel, president of the Sanford Health Network, Fargo. “Closer collaboration and integration lends itself to better align incentives and potentially avoid duplication of services.

“Evaluating a closer affiliation between JRMC and Sanford seeks to address our changing environment so that we can continue to offer the best patient care possible.”

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Heart Health at Any Age

Go Red For Women
More women die of cardiovascular disease than from the next four causes of death combined, including all forms of cancer. But 80 percent of cardiac events in women could be prevented if women made the right choices for their hearts involving diet, exercise and abstinence from smoking. Make it your mission to learn all you can about heart attacks and stroke — don’t become a statistic. CALL 9-1-1

Heart Attack
A heart attack occurs when the blood flow to a part of the heart is blocked, usually by a blood clot. If this clot cuts off the blood flow completely, the part of the heart muscle supplied by that artery begins to die.

Signs of a Heart Attack:

  1. Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest. It lasts more than a few minutes, or goes away and comes back.
  2. Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  3. Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
  4. Other signs such as breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
  5. As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.

If you have any of these signs, don’t wait more than five minutes before calling for help. Call 9-1-1…Get to a hospital right away.

Stroke
Stroke is the No. 3 cause of death in America. It’s also a major cause of severe, long-term disability. Stroke and TIA (transient ischemic attack) happen when a blood vessel feeding the brain gets clogged or bursts. The signs of a TIA are like a stroke, but usually last only a few minutes. If you have any of these signs, don’t wait more than five minutes before calling for help.

Call 9-1-1 to get help fast if you have any of these, but remember that not all of these warning signs occur in every stroke.

Signs of Stroke and TIAs

  1. Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
  2. Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
  3. Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  4. Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  5. Sudden severe headache with no known cause

Also, check the time so you’ll know when the first symptoms appeared. It’s very important to take immediate action. Research from the American Heart Association has shown that if given within three hours of the start of symptoms, a clot-busting drug can reduce long-term disability for the most common type of stroke.

Go Red For Women

In your 20’s http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour20s.aspx

In your 30’s http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour30s.aspx

In your 40’s http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour40s.aspx

In your 50’s http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour50s.aspx

In your 60+ http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour60s.aspx

 

For more information go to http://www.goredforwomen.org/index.aspx

American Heart Association

Jamestown Regional Medical Center now awarded as a Level IV Trauma Center

Jamestown Regional Medical Center has received an official notification that they are now state designated as a Level IV Trauma Center.

The North Dakota Department of Health State Designation has been awarded to the Jamestown Regional Medical Center as a Level IV Trauma Center for January 18, 2012 through January 18, 2015. The State Trauma Committee and the North Dakota Department of Health commend Jamestown Regional Medical Center for their services provided to trauma patients.

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