As we “March forward”, and look forward to warmer weather, we at Port Huron Hospital want to remind you that we’re still in the midst of influenza season – and it has been particularly widespread this year. As we fight influenza this year, we look to our community to help stop the spread of infection. We all know about the importance of getting the flu vaccine each year, but another very powerful weapon worth discussion is proper hand hygiene. We also want to get you ready for an annual March activity marking its 25th year at Port Huron Hospital. Our annual Fun and Fitness Festival brings a healthy message to kids in a fun, interactive environment. Plan to join us March 29 for fun with ambulance tours, a “Visit to the Operating Room,” pet therapy, fitness obstacle course and free raffles for a bicycle. It can be our “secret” that kids are learning about health and fitness while they’re having fun! ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
Nationally and locally, hospitals and health systems are concerned about offering the best healthcare possible in the most efficient and effective manner. We know that being efficient and basing our services on benchmark protocols make the most of our resources and, most importantly, save lives. One way of assuring that we are offering the highest quality of care is to seek accreditation and certification for the services we provide. Our recent certification by the Joint Commission as an Advanced Primary Stroke Center is a good example. This certification means Port Huron Hospital has been recognized as having state-of-the-art services, staff, and training for treating stroke patients. Following a rigorous onsite review, the Joint Commission approved our stroke treatment protocols. These include advanced imaging capabilities, 24/7 availability of specialized treatments, and staff with unique education and competencies to care for stroke patients. We’re proud of the accreditations, certifications and quality designations we’ve earned for the high quality of care that we provide throughout the hospital. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
It’s the season for joy, celebration and giving. Last week the Port Huron Hospital Foundation did exactly that with its 25th Annual Festival of Trees. In recognition of the community’s continuing support of the annual fundraiser, the Foundation partnered with the Wirtz Family Foundation and a number of other organizations for an Evening of Giving – a Christmas celebration for deserving families in the community. Thank you to the Wirtz family for funding this very special event. You’ll read about other organizations who were involved in making the evening a success below.
In addition to Festival of Trees, we have another annual tradition that delights everyone who sees it -- Dr. Percy McDonald’s holiday train display. I invite you to take time to visit our main entrance atrium to experience this magical display that takes Dr. McDonald and his elves a full three days to set up. There’s another tradition in the atrium as well -- the Port Huron Hospital Auxiliary’s Tree of Peace. It is decorated with ornaments that have been purchased to honor or remember loved ones. On behalf of all of us at Port Huron Hospital, may you experience all the traditional joys and comforts of holiday celebrations. Thank you for being our cherished community partners. We wish you a Merry Christmas along with peace and good health in the New Year. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
Each year, more than 40,000 visits are made to our Emergency Center. As a fully equipped Emergency Center with state-of-the-art equipment and emergency-certified staff, Port Huron Hospital is the busiest and most experienced in the county. For conditions such as heart attack or stroke, it’s always important to call 911 immediately so emergency responders can start care before you reach the hospital. But, what constitutes a visit to the Emergency Center for illnesses and injuries that are non-life threatening? As your partner in health, we are committed to partnering with our community to provide the best care possible in the best way possible, including sharing guidelines for signs and symptoms of minor emergencies that should be treated promptly so you can recover quickly. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
As the area’s leader in women’s health services, Port Huron Hospital is well known and respected for breast cancer services – from its Breast Imaging Center of Excellence to its treatment programs and support groups. I am proud of the fact that Port Huron Hospital’s Community Cancer Program is the only hospital in Michigan to have earned the Commission on Cancer 2012 Outstanding Achievement Award during the 2012 survey period, and is one of eight hospitals in the country to earn back to back Outstanding Achievement Awards. We have a number of special breast cancer awareness programs taking place in October. Visit our website to learn more about them. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
It may officially be summer according to the calendar, but certain activities alert us that fall will be here soon. The Detroit Lions have officially opened practice for the 2013 season and young athletes across the state have begun practice for the athletic programs they’ll be involved in when school starts. To help our local athletes be both successful and safe during these endeavors, Port Huron Hospital Physical Therapy’s certified athletic trainers are taking the field right alongside the athletes at area high schools and at SC4. Athletic programs help our students learn the importance of having healthy bodies and team spirit. I’m proud of our contribution to this process. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
This is the perfect time to be outside enjoying the beautiful Blue Water area. There are family gatherings, picnics, camping, festivals, races, fireworks and many other happy activities. Unfortunately, our enthusiasm can lead to overdoing it and summer-related accidents and injuries. You may not believe this: even though we are always here for you, we’d rather you didn’t have to seek treatment in our Emergency Center. To help you avoid it, we offer some tips on staying safe and healthy. Have a great summer! ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
Each month, it’s my pleasure to share with you some of the healthy activities and events Port Huron Hospital brings to the community. In May, I was honored to share the stage with 57 high-school valedictorians and salutatorians and present them with an award for their distinguished academic achievement. I look forward to the Salute to Youth event each year because in these students, I see a bright, successful future. At Port Huron Hospital, we also see a bright future for the health of the community as we move forward. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
I am honored to report that Port Huron Hospital has earned the very prestigious Outstanding Achievement Award for cancer care. The award, presented by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer, recognizes cancer programs that strive for excellence in providing quality care to cancer patients. Accreditation is given only to facilities that have voluntarily committed to providing the highest level of quality cancer care, the best in cancer diagnosis and treatment, and compliance with established standards. We are particularly proud because Port Huron Hospital is the only hospital in Michigan to have earned this award in 2012. This award reflects our multidisciplinary approach to cancer care which combines medical expertise and state-of-the-art resources with an array of outreach services; many of which are partnerships with our caring community. The blend of expertise and compassion is what has always helped Port Huron Hospital demonstrate such high standards and provide world-class cancer care to oncology patients. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
Like many of you, I’ve been wondering when spring will arrive in the Blue Water area. One thing I’m sure about, once warmer weather is here, we’re going to see more people enjoying our county’s great bike paths and parks. I’m sure I speak for everyone at Port Huron Hospital when I say that I hope every one of these bike riders wears a helmet. Data shows that bike helmets are 85 to 88 percent effective in reducing head and brain injuries. That’s why the Port Huron Hospital Foundation partners with other area organizations to promote and educate about the use of helmets when participating in wheeled sports, particularly bike riding. This annual initiative is an excellent example of many organizations partnering to improve health in the community. Another important partnership improving quality of life in the community is one shared by Port Huron Hospital’s employees. Since 1999, members of the Employees That Care (ETC) donor club have donated more than $500,000 to assist fellow employees and to make improvements in the hospital. I’m very proud of these employees who continuously live our values of compassion, integrity and excellence. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
To make a positive impact on the future health of our community, we reach out to families, and particularly to children. We want children to be health conscious, plus we hope to influence them to become future healthcare professionals. To that end, nearly 25 years ago, Port Huron Hospital introduced the Children’s Fun and Fitness Festival to the community. It’s an example of the dedication of our healthcare professionals, volunteers and community partners who spend many hours making sure kids get a positive message about health and fitness. Since 1989, thousands of area children have participated in this free event. We’ve heard good things from both kids and their parents about the event. I hope you’ll think about joining us this year. It’s a great way to spend time with your children and grandchildren - and even better, the kids have so much fun, they don’t even realize they’re learning! ~Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
we continue our observance of American Heart Month, we believe one of
our most important roles is to partner with the community to lower the
incidence of cardiovascular disease. One way we feel we can do this is
to help you understand the risks of heart disease and to provide you
with the tools and support to make healthy choices. Educating yourself
how to avoid heart disease is important and that’s why we have a number of free sources for information. I urge you to make a Heart Health Month resolution – take advantage of resources available to become more knowledgeable about heart disease and to take the steps necessary to maintain your heart health. ~Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
The new year has arrived and in just a few weeks, it will be February --
American Heart Month. We’ll kick off Heart Month with our ninth Annual
Women and Heart: Wine, Cheese and Chocolate, a fun evening that happens
to have a serious message -- heart disease is the number one killer of
women in the United States. It’s important for women to take
charge of their heart health. As American Heart Month approaches, I would like to take a moment to mention a message that all of us Port Huron Hospital hope you will keep in mind. If you or someone you are with is experiencing any of the symptoms of a heart attack, it’s very important to call 911. You need to get to the nearest emergency center. Don’t hesitate and don’t try to drive yourself. The sooner you get medical attention, the less likely you are to suffer permanent heart muscle damage. Remember this statement: Stay Alive -- Don’t Drive. Call 911! ~Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
It is important to us to be able to offer the most sophisticated medical
technology available so patients don’t have to leave our community for
healthcare services. The generous matching gift from the Acheson
Foundation we talk about below doesn’t just benefit Port Huron Hospital,
it benefits our patients and the entire community. Generous donations,
such as this, allow us to purchase the most advanced robotic surgery and
medical imaging in St. Clair and Sanilac counties. On behalf of all of
us at Port Huron Hospital, I would like to thank the Acheson Foundation.
This gift makes a difference in the
health of our community. I would also like to wish you a healthy and safe holiday season. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
Port Huron Hospital opened on November 7, 1882, as the result of the commitment of a group of individuals who created a legacy of partnership and healthcare in the community. You’ve always told us that you want Port Huron Hospital to be your community hospital. That’s why we continue to be an independent hospital and why our strategic decisions are made with input from you. We have always believed our purpose is to be the area’s leader in healing and to be your partner in creating and maintaining a healthy community. As a staple in the community, we look to the past with pride. I feel privileged to be part of the current evolution of Port Huron Hospital and, as we mark 130 years, I would like to recognize all of those people who’ve made this anniversary a reality – our medical staff, our employees, our volunteers and all of you who have shown your belief and confidence in Port Huron Hospital. And I want to assure you that we will continue to shape our future, as we always have, with your vision and support. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
As the area leader in women’s health services, Port Huron Hospital is well known and respected for its breast cancer services – from its Breast Imaging Center of Excellence in Women’s Wellness Place, to its treatment programs and support groups. The hospital has a number of special programs in October, including free mammograms for women who have never had a screening mammogram and have no health insurance or are unable to afford a mammogram. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
Port Huron Hospital’s 130 year history is a good example of what can be accomplished when an organization partners with the community. It’s because of support and leadership from members of the community that Port Huron Hospital remains a true, independent community hospital. And it’s because of local donations to fundraising projects like Investing in Technology of the Future that we remain the area’s leader in healthcare and medical technology. Thank you for your continued support. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
A special way to enhance health in our community is to partner with those who see a need and address it. Jeff and Tracy Willard are such people. Their own grief evolved into Hunter Hospitality House, a respite for families of Port Huron Hospital patients. We sincerely appreciate and support the efforts of Jeff and Tracy and their commitment to making a difference in the community and, particularly, in the lives of family members of our patients. They are true partners in health. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
Over the last few months, our Your Partner in Health report has looked at how Port Huron Hospital, the area’s leader in children’s health services, doesn’t limit itself to supporting just the physical health needs of the children in our community. We are dedicated to supporting our young people in body, mind and spirit and to helping them succeed in the future. That’s why we sponsor programs like the Walk for Summer Reading initiatives in our elementary schools and why we hold our annual Salute to Youth, which honors the best of our area’s graduates. This year we added something new, we helped to sponsor Port Huron’s FIRST Robotics team.
You might wonder why we would support a team of kids who set out to build a robot. It’s simple. They represent our future. As a hospital, we rely on the expertise of our medical staff, healthcare and technology professionals, business professionals and facility specialists to help us fulfill our long term vision of improving the health of the community. Studies show that programs like FIRST Robotics give kids the opportunity to see how they can be successful in the future and how going to school will help them attain their dreams. These kids are our future…as developers of technology, as innovators and as future contributors to our vision for the future. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
As the area’s leading provider of children’s services, we at Port Huron Hospital take great pride in partnering with others to provide opportunities for kids to learn about healthcare, safety and about staying healthy. I’m proud that the hospital is such a leader in the community.
We’re gearing up for our 23rd annual “Children’s Fun and Fitness Festival.” This happy event gives kids an opportunity to see how they can take charge of their health and fitness – a concept we hope will stay with them throughout their lives. The Festival is a collaboration with our friends and partners in the community. Together, we’ve seen thousands of kids participate through the years. This free event has become such a community tradition that we are now seeing parents who were participants when they were kids! That’s a great feeling. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
Last May I had an opportunity to meet students at Roosevelt Elementary School and to be a part of their enthusiasm for walking and their desire to read. This was due to the impressive “Walk for Summer Reading” program – a creative initiative developed by local endocrinologist and education advocate, Dr. Sushma Reddy. This month I am pleased that Port Huron Hospital is involved in another program that promotes reading and fitness. The Port Huron Hospital Foundation, in partnership with a number of other area community organizations, sponsors Family Read Night at schools in four communities. Family Read Night is a local program based on the National Education Association’s Read Across America, an annual reading motivation and awareness program. The intent is to boost reading excitement and achievement. And for local organizations, it is a great opportunity to promote healthy minds and healthy bodies. Family Read Night is a perfect example of how we can partner with other organizations to affect the health and future of the community.
Port Huron Hospital will also partner with the Alzheimer’s Association of Greater Michigan to present a special program about Alzheimer’s Disease on March 27.
We’ll see the start of spring in the next few weeks. On behalf of Port Huron Hospital, I hope you’ve had a healthy winter and look forward to a healthy spring. ~ Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
In viewing ourselves as a partner in the health of our community, we encourage people to take an active role in their own health and the health of others. And we take our roll as educators in this process very seriously.
Heart disease is a major health problem in the United States, affecting more than four and a half million Americans. It is the leading cause of hospitalization in people older than 65. February is American Heart Month and Port Huron Hospital is proud to partner with the community in raising awareness about heart health.
One of our primary goals is to help people adopt healthy lifestyles so they may avoid heart disease. Equally important,however, is to help those people who do have heart disease or who have loved ones with heart disease live with the reality of the disease. That’s why we have made a commitment to educate as many individuals as we can about how important it is to call 9-1-1 when anyone is experiencing the symptoms of a heart attack. Steve Chandler credits quick actions by those around him when he had a heart attack for his being alive today. I hope you’ll take the time to read his story here.
Port Huron Hospital offers regular CPR classes throughout the year. Some are educational only, others are for accreditation. 55 Plus is conducting an educational session for seniors this Tuesday, Valentine’s Day. It’s an ideal opportunity to learn what to do when faced with some very real life and death situations.
Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to recognize those you love…it’s also a good time to think about your heart and keeping it healthy. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
New Year’s Day marked the beginning of the 130th year that Port Huron
Hospital has been serving the community. All of us at Port Huron
Hospital believe it has been our privilege to have served you for so
many generations. As we look to
2012, we will strive to provide the highest quality healthcare possible and to continue as your partner in health. We also pledge to grow in our role as the area’s leader in healing.
In this month’s Your Partner in Health, Max Amstutz, our hospital
chaplain, talks about how something as simple as a stuffed animal can
help patients and families through stressful moments. Last month we told
you about the Penguin Pond at our annual Festival of Trees and how area
school children raise money for children’s services at Port Huron
Hospital. As part of that program, children raise money to purchase a penguin for the Penguin Pond. After the festival, the penguins are given to children who have to be in or make a trip to the hospital for care around the holidays. Both of these programs prove how important it is to treat the whole person – body, mind and spirit.
February is National Heart Month, a good time to think about your heart health and to remember that if you think you may be having a heart attack, don’t hesitate to go to the nearest Emergency Center. Don’t try to drive yourself or ask someone else to take you. Call 911! It could make the difference between you living and dying.
On behalf of all of us at Port Huron Hospital, I extend our very best to you in 2012 and wish you health and happiness in the New Year. As we look forward to another year of service, we are honored to be your partner in health. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
I’m always amazed at the giving spirit in our community and among our employees, volunteers and medical staff.
Year after year we have a tradition in our main entrance atrium that delights everyone who sees it. It is wonderful to see the joy that Dr. Percy McDonald’s holiday train display brings to so many. I invite you to take time to visit our Main Entrance Atrium to see this magical display. There’s is also another tradition in the atrium -- the Port Huron Hospital Auxiliary’s Tree of Peace. It is decorated with ornaments that have been purchased to honor or remember loved ones.
This past weekend the Port Huron Hospital Foundation presented its annual Festival of Trees. The festival is brought together by volunteers. It is a huge feat. I’d like to extend my thanks to all of the volunteers who made this year a reality. A tradition at the festival for several years now is the Penguin Pond. This special fundraising program is a means for school children to raise money for bringing joy to children in the hospital around the holidays in the form of stuffed Penguins. I can’t say enough good about the school children from both St. Clair and Sanilac counties who raised money for 100 penguins.
On behalf of all of us at Port Huron Hospital, may you experience all the traditional joys and comforts that holiday celebrations bring. I thank all of you for being our cherished partners in the community and wish you peace and good health in the New Year. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
2011 - November is the traditional American month for giving thanks.
The holiday season is quickly approaching. Thanksgiving is just a couple
weeks from now. John F. Kennedy once said, “As we express our gratitude,
we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter
words, but to live by them.” This report gives information about giving
the gift of life by donating blood. I can’t help but think that giving
the gift of life is the essence of what Kennedy meant when he said “live
I do believe that donating blood is the epitome of giving back. Port Huron Hospital holds four blood drives a year -- one in each of the seasons. In fact, we just had one a week or so ago. And we traditionally have one immediately following the Christmas and New Year holidays – a time when typically the biggest shortages of blood occur. I urge you to think about giving the gift of life this holiday season, whether at Port Huron Hospital or at another American Red Cross blood drive site. Where you give doesn’t matter. That you give is all that counts. On behalf of all of us at Port Huron Hospital, I thank you for your continued support and sincerely hope you have many blessings during this season of thankfulness. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
October 2011 - This Port Huron Hospital 2011 Community Report is a look back at the past year and the many ways Port Huron Hospital is committed to our community. Each month we publish a report designed to keep you informed about our plans, our accomplishments and the partnerships we have in the community. As a non-profit hospital, Port Huron Hospital is committed to giving back to the community. These community benefit activities take on a number of forms – from educational programs to free or low cost health screenings to charity care. They are all part of our commitment to being a leader in healing, a partner in health and to making a difference in the health of our communities. They are part of an overall goal – that when you think about your health, you think of us as your hospital. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
September 2011 - We call this monthly community report Your Partner in Health, and it couldn’t be more aptly named as we focus on Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Our efforts in the battle against breast cancer would not be complete or in many cases -- possible -- without the support and partnership of our generous and caring community. One effort leads to another…and another…and so forth. I must have seen hundreds of women with streaks of pink in their hair last year. It’s amazing to me how this simple show of support has taken hold throughout the region and how it has inspired others to get involved with their own fundraisers. Northgate Ford is a perfect example. All funds raised go into the Donna Niester Breast Cancer Fund. This fund allows us to provide a number of free baseline mammograms and annual screening mammograms to women with no health insurance. All of us at Port Huron Hospital are proud of Women’s Wellness Place and its distinction as an American College of Radiology Breast Cancer Center of Excellence. This designation means we provide the highest quality of mammography and have passed rigorous scrutiny in professional standards. It also means we have shown a commitment to prevention of breast cancer and to the highest quality treatment. As a healthcare provider in this community since the 1880s, we’re very grateful that our neighbors and friends have so much confidence in us that they are willing to help us provide greater access to our services. It’s truly a partnership in health. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
August 2011 - One of the descriptions that we use when promoting our services to the community is “Port Huron Hospital -- Your health. Your hospital.” As a hospital, we are dedicated to the care and healing of our patients. But we are also committed to caring for the caregivers in our community; helping those individuals who spend much of their lives caring for loved ones with health issues. We have a variety of support groups for individuals dealing with illness, but one of our groups, the Alzheimer’s Support Group, is committed solely to the well being of caregivers -- individuals who are caring for loved ones with Alzheimer’s disease. The Alzheimer’s Support Group is coordinated by Port Huron Hospital 55 Plus in association with the Detroit Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. We can’t help but view the members of this support group as true partners in providing care in our community. I’m proud that we are able to provide comfort and support to people who face the uncertainty of Alzheimer’s Disease with compassion and courage.– Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
July 2011 - Recently I had an opportunity to meet two groups of students at Roosevelt Elementary School, to be a part of their enthusiasm for walking and their desire to read. This was due to the impressive “Walk for Summer Reading” program – a creative initiative developed by local endocrinologist and education advocate, Dr. Sushma Reddy. This important program combines fitness and reading to create greater academic and life success among elementary aged students in our county. I am pleased to say Port Huron Hospital is the Roosevelt Elementary School sponsor of this important program and I was honored to present a check to Principal Terry Stoneburner for the purchase of books for deserving kids. As I walked first with first graders and then with second graders, I was impressed with the enthusiasm and appreciation the “Little Reds” showed for fitness and reading. “Walk for Summer Reading” is a perfect example of how we can partner with other organizations to affect the health and future of the community. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
June 2011 -
Each month in Your Partner in Health, we focus on various ways we
partner with the community to make a difference in the health of the
community. This month’s topics are good examples of our ongoing
partnership. One of the ways we try to help area residents stay healthy
is to provide community education on important health topics. What could
be more important than providing you with information that could save
your life if you find yourself experiencing the symptoms of a heart
attack? Knowing that you are having a heart attack isn’t always clear.
If you had mild pressure in your chest and felt like you might have
indigestion, common symptoms of a heart attack, would you call for an
ambulance? Many of us might decide we should be checked out but will
drive ourselves or have someone drive us to the hospital. I hope after
reading the article below you will always
call 911 if you think you are having a heart attack. It could save your life or a loved one’s life.More than 20 years ago, Port Huron Hospital made a commitment to the community to provide a local source of health information…from providing information about physicians in the area to giving callers access to a registered nurse to provide guidance when they have symptom based questions. This local service is HealthAccess. Recently a caller took the time to recognize one of our registered nurses for, in his words, saving his life. This month’s stories are just two examples of our dedication to you and how we strive to maintain a
healthy community. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
May 2011 -
Spring’s warmer weather can be a catalyst for increasing our outdoor
activities. For many of us that means healthy
activities like bike riding and walking. As your partner in health, there are some things that all of us at Port Huron Hospital can’t begin to stress enough at this time of year, as well as advocate all year round. One is that when you or your children are participating in wheeled sports, helmets save lives. Another is that exercise, especially walking, is a key component in maintaining a healthy body, mind and spirit. For years now, we’ve partnered with a group of dedicated volunteers from organizations throughout St. Clair and Sanilac counties to promote helmet safety. This simple, yet vital, piece of equipment saves lives. Please take time to read what Emergency Medicine specialist Dr. Warren Entwistle of Port Huron Hospital’s Emergency Center says about his own personal passion for safety helmets. You don’t need a helmet to walk for your health…but you do need healthy feet. With as much as we use them each day, there is no doubt that the health of our feet impacts our activity, our balance, and our independence. Port Huron Hospital’s 55 Plus offers free foot screenings by Podiatrist Dr. Anthony Bianchi for those of you who have concerns about your feet. On behalf of Port Huron Hospital, I encourage you to get out and safely enjoy our beautiful Bluewater area this spring. We’re here to support you in any way we can. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
April 2011 - During this second week of April, you are probably wondering if winter is finally over. I think we are all ready for warmer weather and the flowers of spring. This edition of Your Partner in Health focuses on two vastly different ways that Port Huron Hospital shows its commitment to the health of the community. One provides you with an opportunity to meet members of our medical staff and to learn about health issues. The other is an example of our charitable efforts. Since 1985, Port Huron Hospital 55 Plus has provided incentives and discounts to its membership and educational programs for members of the community, whether they are 55 Plus members or not. For the past 10 years or more, it has sponsored Lunch With the Doctor. Physicians on the hospital’s medical staff donate their time and expertise to present educational luncheon programs on various health topics. Not only does this present an educational opportunity, but it gives those attending a chance to talk with the doctor and ask questions. The economy has hit our community especially hard and more people than ever are finding themselves in a position where they can’t afford healthcare and necessary medications to be well. Last year, Port Huron Hospital provided more than $5.2 million in charity care to members of the community. A portion of these funds helped individuals obtain medications they were unable to afford. As the area’s leader in healing and partner in health, I’m proud of our commitment to the community. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
March 2011 - As the area’s leading provider of health information, we at Port Huron Hospital take great pride in partnering with others to provide services that are essential to the community. I’m proud of the two programs discussed here and the experiences and information they provide. There are 57 million people in the United States who have pre-diabetes. Recent research has shown that some long-term damage to the body, especially the heart and circulatory system, may already be occurring during pre-diabetes. In Michigan, there are more than 3 million adults with pre-diabetes and over 107,000 children with the condition. The American Diabetes Association estimates 44 million Americans will be diagnosed with diabetes in the next 15 years. With these numbers, it’s important for individuals to have access to information that is reliable. The pre-diabetes program, presented in partnership with the YMCA of the Blue Water Area, provides tools for taking charge and preventing diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may be prevented - when a conscious approach is taken. We’re gearing up for our 22nd annual “Children’s Fun and Fitness Festival.” This happy event gives kids an opportunity to see how they can take charge of their health and fitness – a concept we hope will stay with them through their life. The “festival” is a collaboration with our friends and partners in the community. Together, we’ve seen thousands of kids participate through the years. This free event has become such a community tradition, that we are now seeing parents who were participants when they were kids! – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
- When we view ourselves as a partner in the health of our community, we
think beyond our role as a provider. We encourage people to take an
active role in their own health and the health of others. We see this as
empowering the community through education. Heart failure is a major
health problem in the United States, affecting about 4.6 million
Americans. It is the leading cause of hospitalization in people older
than 65. As we observe American Heart Month, we’re proud to present an
educational program designed to teach people how to take charge and live
life to the fullest after a diagnosis of heart failure -- Heart Failure
101. Speaking of heart health, we’re taking CPR basics along with other
first aid and health messages to area children. These educational
programs are designed to empower children with the knowledge they need
to remain calm and provide help during a medical emergency. To empower
yourself when it comes to health, consider participating in one of our
educational programs. They are listed in the Events and Programs section of our website. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
January 2011 - New Year’s Day marked the beginning of the 129th year that Port Huron Hospital has been serving the community. All of us at Port Huron Hospital believe it has been our privilege to have served you for so many generations. As we look to 2011, we will strive to provide the highest quality healthcare possible and to continue as your partner in health. We also pledge to grow in our role as the area’s leader in healing. In this issue, we look at some recent efforts that our hospital family has made to support one another and to support our mission. The incredible Employees That Care effort is a true testament of the supportive and “can do” environment we’re so proud of. We also look at how we have partnered with the community to provide free and low cost screenings – over 300 in just the last few months. Taking advantage of this vital service could provide life-saving information for you to share with your physician. On behalf of all of us at Port Huron Hospital, I extend our very best to you in 2011 and wish you health and happiness in the New Year. As we look forward to another year of service, we are honored to be your partner in health. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
December 2010 - It’s the season for joy, celebration and giving. I’m amazed at the giving spirit of our employees, volunteers and medical staff. Year after year we have extraordinary employees who truly are “angels” for making the holidays special for others. It’s a tradition for many of them. Also a tradition for us is the joy that Dr. Percy McDonald’s holiday train display brings to so many. I invite you to take time to visit our Main Entrance Atrium to see this magical display. There’s another tradition in the atrium -- the Port Huron Hospital Auxiliary’s Tree of Peace. It is decorated with ornaments that have been purchased to honor or remember loved ones. On behalf of all of us at Port Huron Hospital, may you experience all the traditional joys and comforts that holiday celebrations bring. I thank you for being our cherished partner in the community and wish you peace and good health in the New Year. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
- This month’s stories all involve sharing – which is so appropriate
during this season of Thanksgiving. When you read about our “Harvest
Gathering” you’ll see how Port Huron Hospital employees and our friends
in the medical community rallied to provide more than three tons of food
to local people in need. If you think hunger isn’t an issue today,
consider these statistics from the Michigan Food Bank Council: In
Michigan, 12 percent of households are struggling to put food on the
table and nearly one out of six children is at risk of hunger. With the
sober realities of hunger, I’m proud that Port Huron Hospital has
consistently been one of the top five hospital providers of food in the
state. You’ll also see how many of our employees continue to share by
donating needed holiday turkeys to local charities. It isn’t just our
employees who are generous. A long time board member, Donna Niester,
has found a way to channel her passion for helping those dealing with breast cancer. The Port Huron Hospital Foundation Donna Niester Breast Cancer Fund started as a charity effort among friends and has grown to become an indispensable financial support for breast cancer services at Port Huron Hospital. In keeping with the warm spirit of our employees and friends, all of us at Port Huron Hospital wish you a healthy and happy Thanksgiving. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
September 2010 - As the CEO at Port Huron Hospital, I am very proud of the hospital’s reputation of leadership in women’s health. Women’s Wellness Place has received national recognition from The American College of Radiology as the only “Breast Imaging Center of Excellence” in a five-county area. As you might imagine, Breast Cancer Awareness Month is very important to all of us at the hospital. It’s an excellent time to talk about preventive care and the availability of our continuum of women’s services. services such as the “Look Good, Feel Better” program - helping women with cancer heal by boosting their self image and confidence. We have many friends in the community who support our efforts. Friends like the Kearns family - who turned grief into a triumphant annual fundraiser that benefits hundreds of women with cancer. And our friends at Salon PiZazz! – where stylists donate their talent and enthusiasm to get our community “in the pink” with “Let’s Wear Pink Hair”. We support many programs for breast cancer survivors and their families. Plus, we offer free mammograms during October for women who don’t have health insurance or have never had a mammogram before. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer
August 2010 - There’s an old English proverb, “If the mountain won’t come to Mohammed, then Mohammed must go to the mountain.” Well, that’s just what we do for our upcoming annual men’s health event – Keep Your Motor Runnin’. Because we know it can be difficult to convince men to see their doctor for vital screenings, we’re bringing the screenings to a familiar setting – Moran Automotive in Fort Gratiot. I hope you’ll enjoy reading how we’ve partnered with our friends at Moran Automotive to provide a few hours of cars, food, screenings and humor for the men in the community. While this event is designed to be relaxing and fun, we can’t underestimate its importance. Of the 120 men who attended last year, 86 participated in the screenings. We recommended that 38 of those screened see a physician because of abnormal results. – Thomas DeFauw, President and Chief Executive Officer