Did you know Essentia Health offers extensive traditional and electronic library services system-wide? Library Services is a division of the Essentia Institute of Rural Health.
“Our goal is to provide health professionals with high quality, fully accessible information to support patient care, learning and research,” says Library Services Manager Liz Sobczak. “Everyone within our health system can access our library services – no matter what their role. And technology is truly helping us meet the needs of our healthcare teams and, by extension, our patients.”
The library supports physicians and staff with the following services:
- Literature Searches: Whether it’s for patient care, a Process Excellence project, or an upcoming presentation, the librarians are happy to complete literature searches for you. To request a literature search, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org describing your topic and the timeframe within which you need the information. Please provide words that you would expect to see in the titles of the articles.
- Document Delivery: The library staff can obtain articles for you from its journal collection and through its extensive interlibrary loan network. Articles can be requested by emailing citations to email@example.com or calling (218) 786-4396.
- E-Library: A robust centralized intranet site provides access to electronic journals and books, databases, information about library services and more. Click here.
- Books: The library has a collection of medical, nursing, and leadership books. Audiobooks to make your commutes more pleasant have also recently been added. The book catalog is linked on the right side of the library’s home page. Click here. We’re happy to send books to your location via the Essentia Health courier. Books that aren’t part of our collection may also be available through our interlibrary loan network.
- CME Opportunities: DVDs from the Friday morning and Friday noon Grand Rounds presentations are held in the library for three years from the date of the presentation. That list can be found in the center of the library’s Intranet site. Click here.
We welcome questions about our resources and services and can be contacted by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (218) 786-4396.
It’s a favorite part of Norbert Knack’s job – facilitating a group discussion with people who are all working to adopt a healthy lifestyle and prevent the development of diabetes. “We try to help them change their lives for the better – not just for the short term, but for the rest of their lives,” he says.
Knack is a lifestyle coach with the Essentia Institute of Rural Health. In this role, he meets regularly with participants in the National Diabetes Prevention Program, a health and wellness program developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Across the system, Essentia offers the program free of charge.
He knows he’s making a healthy difference in the lives of those participating in the four Duluth sessions he facilitates – he sees them lose weight and learn how to live healthier. But now Knack has found a way to spread that influence further: He has become a master trainer, who can now teach others to be lifestyle coaches and start facilitating groups within the National Diabetes Prevention Program.
“We need more lifestyle coaches, especially since 86 million people in the United States now have pre-diabetes,” Knack says.
Knack became a master trainer in March, and hosted his first training session in September. Almost half of the participants were people who had gone through the year-long National Diabetes Prevention Program themselves in Brainerd. They were so impressed by the program, Knack says, they wanted to learn how to start their own groups to spread the benefits of the program to more people in their community. Others at the training hailed from communities across Minnesota.
At Essentia’s Idaho facilities, Laura Hollingshead is also a lifestyle coach with the National Diabetes Prevention Program. She facilitates nine group sessions, and covers hundreds of miles each week in her travels. Just last month, she became a master trainer as well and plans to start training sessions for lifestyle coaches early next year.
“In order to help the rural community that we have, we need more lifestyle coaches,” Hollingshead says. “The program has an impact not only on diabetes prevention, but all chronic diseases.”
Like Hollingshead, Knack also is preparing for training sessions for those interested in becoming lifestyle coaches. The two-day sessions will be offered in early December in Duluth and in mid-January in Fargo. See the box at right for details. Knack says many lifestyle coaches with this program are dietitians, nurses or certified diabetes educators like he is, but it’s not a requirement.
For those who would simply like to participate in the year-long prevention program, more sessions are about to start in the Duluth-Superior area.
“Participants are different people after going through this program,” Knack says. “It’s a wondrous thing to watch people change their lives this way.”
A new gold standard in cancer research is being unveiled across the country this month, and the Essentia Institute of Rural Health is an important part of it. Essentia Health has been selected as one of just 34 community sites nationwide to benefit from more than $93 million in cancer research funding over the next five years.
The funding will come from a new entity – NCORP, the National Cancer Institute’s Community Oncology Research Program. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) consolidated two major research networks to create the new network. The two programs affected are the Community Clinical Oncology Programs (CCOP) and NCI Community Cancer Centers Program (NCCCP). The new network aims to preserve, enhance and improve cancer research in communities across the country.
“NCORP is really the continuation of a prior program,” explains Dr. Bret Friday, an EIRH researcher and hematologist/oncologist at the Essentia Health Cancer Center in Duluth. “For Essentia to be one of 34 community sites throughout the country to be chosen is very prestigious.”
For our Cancer Center patients, this development means they’ll be able to join research studies while receiving care in their own communities. That allows them to stay close to family, friends, support systems and their local physicians. It means patients across Essentia will have access to state-of-the-art therapies that are typically only available at large universities or metropolitan areas.
More than 70 sites and health systems nationwide took part in a competitive grant process for $93 million. In Minnesota, Essentia was the only organization north of the Twin Cities chosen. Our Cancer Centers in Brainerd, Duluth and Fargo, as well as other system-wide sites that provide cancer care, will benefit from the NCORP funding and the subsequent cancer research. Within Essentia, approximately $3.6 million will be earmarked for cancer research over the next five years.
The overall goal of NCORP is to support cancer clinical trials that study prevention, screening, treatment and imaging. Research has shown that patients receive the highest quality cancer care when participating in clinical trials.
“We’re committed to providing quality cancer research – the best way to treat our cancer patients,” Dr. Friday says. “Through this funding, we’ll be able to do research projects quickly and throughout the communities we serve. We want new approaches to cancer treatment in community settings, like ours.”
Essentia Health has a historic commitment to cancer research. Our clinical trials program launched more than 35 years ago – in 1977. That commitment grew as our health system joined CCOP in 1983. The Essentia Institute of Rural Health supports our clinical research trials. On average, between 75 and 100 cancer trials are being conducted across our health system each year.
“This is extremely exciting for Essentia and the patients we serve,” Dr. Friday says. “It allows us to give our patients the ability to participate in groundbreaking clinical trials close to home. I’m a firm believer that we’ve been so successful because we’ve been doing this extremely well for more than 30 years – thanks to an amazing care team of nurses, pharmacists, researchers and countless others.”...
Essentia Health provided more than 400,000 hours of clinical education to students during the past fiscal year. It didn’t happen by magic.
Hundreds of physicians, pharmacists, advanced practice professionals, therapists, nurses and other care team members from across our health system volunteer their time as teachers and coaches to health care’s next generation.
“Providing clinical site experiences for student education is a solid investment in our future workforce – a workforce we need in order to make a healthy difference in people’s lives for years to come,” says Kate Dean, director of Health Science and Graduate Medical Education at the Essentia Institute of Rural Health.
“Nelson Mandela said it well: ‘Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world,’ ” says Central Region President Adam Rees.
This year, the Central Region’s Family Medicine Department is making a huge commitment, hosting a third-year medical student for nine months as part of the Rural Physician Apprentice Program (RPAP) through the University of Minnesota School of Medicine. Physicians and staff in our East and West Regions also are making a difference to students. Here, we highlight some educational leaders:
In Fargo, Occupational Therapist Megan Kiefer coordinates OT students from three programs. At the West Fargo Clinic, Family Nurse Practitioner Dawn McKinnon facilitates the teaching of nurse practitioner students.
Ashland Clinic Family Nurse Practitioner Michaelene Jansen is willing to host students virtually any day she is working. It’s a commitment shared by many others, including Detroit Lakes Obstetrician/Gynecologist Dr. James Christensen, who sets up clinical rotations in obstetrics/gynecology for medical and advanced practice students.
In the East Region, Duluth Hospitalist Dr. Greg Mason coordinates the scheduling of many medical students and family medicine residents through pediatrics. Three Duluth physical therapists – Lance Swanson, Pam Forsythe and Leigh Burt – were recognized by an academic partner as providing great clinical opportunities and effective feedback to PT students. At St. Mary’s Medical Center, Surgery Physician Assistants Tony Valentine and Katie Sorensen and Nurse Practitioner Dana Cope-Rubik team up with surgical residents as well PA and NP students for valuable training.
A huge thank you goes to the following clinical education specialists, who help coordinate learning experiences for students across the Essentia Health system: Bonnie Garding, Corie Cloutier, Christie Erickson, Brenda Iallonardo, Christina Marshall, and Trish Wetzel.
To all of the Essentia physicians and staff members who share their knowledge and time with students, Dean expresses her appreciation and thanks.
Colleen Renier, a biostatistician at the Essentia Institute of Rural Health, has been honored by the American Public Health Association/Applied Public Health Statistics with a 2014 Achievement Award in Industry. Renier, who also serves as acting Scientific Review Board Chair at EIRH, is being recognized for outstanding contributions in the field of public health statistics.
“All successful research is a team effort and I have been both blessed and honored to work with excellent investigators and staff from here, the University of Minnesota Medical School in Duluth and the University of Minnesota Division of Environmental Health Sciences,” Renier says. “The American Public Health Association has more than 25,000 members representing many areas of expertise, including Applied Public Health Statistics (APHS), and quite honestly it never entered my mind that either I or my work would be singled out for this national honor.”
Renier, a long-time member of APHS, says Essentia Health has always focused on the health of the public. “We’ve continued to make health information available on a national level. Through the years, I’ve evaluated and presented our work with primarily rural populations to a national audience,” Renier says. Data has ranged from the predicted length of patient stays in Urgent Care to home visits in a rural setting.
Renier will receive the award during a APHA conference Nov. 18th in New Orleans....
The statistics are sobering. Each year across the country, 1 in 3 adults over the age of 65 falls. With each fall comes the risk of life-threatening complications. And every 29 minutes, an older adult dies from a fall.
Although Essentia Health has focused on reducing and preventing falls among older adults in the communities we serve, those efforts are being elevated to a new level. Essentia has been chosen as one of 10 healthcare organizations across the nation to participate in a $30 million research study on fall prevention by the National Institutes of Health.
“This is the nation’s largest and most intensive study of how to best prevent injuries from falling among older adults,” explains Essentia Institute of Rural Health Senior Research Scientist Stephen Waring, DVM, PhD
. He's the study’s principal investigator within Essentia. More than 100 researchers are involved nationwide. The trial will be led by Dr. Shalender Bhasin of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School; Dr. Thomas Gill of the Yale School of Medicine; and Dr. David Reuben of the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California-Los Angeles.
Among the other health systems involved in the clinical trial are Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore, Md., New York’s Mount Sinai Health System, the University of Texas Medical Branch and California’s HealthCare Partners. The 10 sites were selected to represent a mix of rural and urban settings with varied ethnic communities and models of care.
The five-year clinical trial will recruit 80 primary-care practices and 6,000 patients ages 75 and older. Within Essentia, Dr. Waring estimates 75 patients will be enrolled at each of eight clinical practices. Four practices will be in the randomly selected control group, where patients will receive care as usual, and four practices will be in the randomly selected treatment group, where patient care will be guided by systematic strategies to reduce falls.
The first year will focus on determining many details of the study, Dr. Waring says. For example, many aspects of the fall prevention intervention will be tested on small numbers of people during this trial phase. If strategies prove successful, the study will proceed, being conducted over four years.
“The goal of this research is to develop a system for clinicians whereby the implementation of evidence-based fall prevention strategies are effective and efficient. It sounds simple, but it’s challenging to put all the pieces together,” says Essentia Elder Care Nurse Practitioner Siobhan McMahon, PhD, GNP-BC
. She is serving as Essentia's co-principal investigator. “There are several risk factors related to falls, such as changes in balance, gait and leg strength, medication side-effects, environmental hazards and changes unique to each individual.”
“The problems we face are complex and therefore require thoughtful and complex solutions,” says NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins. “I’m hopeful this initiative will greatly improve the lives of those most at risk for falls.”
Who is involved?
The National Institutes of Health and the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) are teaming up on the falls prevention project. The $30 million award was made by the National Institute on Aging (NIA), which is part of the NIH. Essentia is among the 10 sites chosen by the NIH. Fourteen other sites – NIA-funded Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Centers – also will participate in the study.
Medical Director of Population Care Management Dr. Mike Van Scoy
will serve as the Essentia group’s clinical adviser and EIRH Research Scientist Cathy McCarty, PhD
, will serve as co-investigator.
To learn more
Want more information on Essentia’s participation in the NIH study? Contact:
EIRH Senior Research Scientist Stephen Waring at Stephen.Waring@EIRH.org
or (218) 786-1280
Elder Care Nurse Practitioner Siobhan McMahon at Siobhan.McMahon@EssentiaHealth.org
or (218) 290-3422...
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