Hospital Corner – November, 2018

Hospital Corner – November, 2018

The holidays are upon us—ready or not.  In a blur, Halloween blends into Thanksgiving, which steps aside for Christmas. Rest assured Auld Lang Syne will be on the radio soon! One day we have candy-collecting school children parading in costume for our SNF residents; the next, turkey and cornucopia decorations adorn offices and hallways; then without warning, twinkling lights and snowmen appear.  One sure sign of the season is the presence of Toys For Tots bins in the Clinic and main entrance to hospital.  Mt. Grant is honored to work with the local U.S. Marine Corps Reserve representative on this annual toy drive to ensure all local children receive a gift this Christmas.  Stop by either location to drop off your new, unwrapped donation.

Speaking of Halloween, mark your calendars for October 31, 2019 (some say the hospital has the best employee costume contest in town).  From the frightening to the comical to the just plain weird, our creative employees put their best into disguises each year.  Another joy to behold: SNF resident smiles as they give away candy to kids and help us judge the costume contest.  Join us for the fun next fall.

Hawthorne’s community holiday parade is December 7; Mt. Grant employees are busy planning for this year’s float. Our crèche-on-wheels, donkeys and cows included, was a hit last year. Added bonus for 2018: we will be serving hot nacho bowls afterwards, a welcome treat on what is sure to be a frosty night.

On average each year, more than 11,000 patient visits are scheduled in our Clinic.  Given that large number and our few providers, it is critical that appointments are kept.  A “No Show” means someone else missed out on an appointment they could have had at that time. Worse, it may be days or even another week before an appointment is available.  Call your provider’s office ASAP if unable to make appointment.   

Joanie Gazaway’s piano continues to delight residents and Mt. Grant employees.  A local church group (I call them the Presbyterian ladies) visited recently for an afternoon of music and singing.  Several residents joined in and all present were feted with inspirational tunes. 

Want to bring joy to a senior in long-term care? During my brief tenure here, I’ve learned the little things can make someone’s day so much better.  Visits by family or friends, a few minutes of conversation at mealtimes, trips around town—these and other simple efforts make a difference.  A Friday tradition continues: our new van ventures out after lunch, taking along residents for an hour or so of local sightseeing.  First stop: Mr. Beane’s for a mocha, milkshake or exotic tea to be savored as we meander.  Though Hawthorne is a small town, there is much to see, much to remember; memories long forgotten are often shared, which prompts others to recall similar moments in their lives.

Mt. Grant General is on a mission to do more to promote healthy lifestyles; while treating the sick and injured is a priority of course, we also want to help local communities live healthier, more active lives.  It is never too late to stop smoking (as some of our staff have discovered).  Concerned about your weight?  We now have a dietician on staff who works with patients in need of healthy eating guidance.  Need some cardio? The hospital recently sponsored its second 5K race of the year, Run For Your Lungs (actually, more of a walk for most but still a great way to get outside and exercise).  Look for another this spring; all are welcome to join in. 

Stay healthy (and get your flu shot).

Hugh Qualls, Administrator