Community News January 01, 2016

Adena’s Vision Toward Community Health Comes Into Focus in 2015

In 2015, Adena Health System marked its 120th anniversary of caring for the people of Chillicothe, Ross County, and 11 additional counties throughout south central and southern Ohio. Created in 1895, due to a need for community-based health care, Adena took a renewed vision of the original intent of its founders by adopting a new vision statement in 2015; “To be instrumental in the creation of healthy and thriving communities.”

Part of that community-focused vision includes a key health system strategy of Population Health. This strategy involves caring for the patient beyond the office appointment or when they are a patient in the hospital. Population Health includes a variety of functions such as: nurse navigators coordinating care for the patient between all of his/her providers, offering education about living with conditions such as diabetes, and making sure a patient’s regular follow up appointments are made and kept.

“Adena’s key clinical strategy toward population health, and our renewed community focus on issues that impact the health of everyone who lives here is evident in many of the System’s 2015 achievements,” said Adena President and CEO Mark Shuter. “When looking back on the year as a whole, our caregivers have worked hard to bring healthcare and the health-related issues that make a difference in all of our lives, outside the four walls of a clinic or the hospital. This is something that we plan to continue well into the New Year.”

A look back on Adena’s community-focused care and outreach includes an educational program via webinar in January that provided education about prescription drug abuse, aimed at parents. The program created by Adena Pharmacist Richard Ash, through a grant from the Cardinal Health Foundation, helped parents identify prescription drug abuse among their children, and to educate their kids of the dangers of prescription drug abuse. Also in January, Adena Regional Medical Center hosted a Be the Match bone marrow tissue drive, adding nearly 100 potential donors to the national Bone Marrow Registry. The drive was coordinated by the family of Chillicothe-native Dr. Tracy Jalbuena, the eldest daughter of retired Adena Urologist Dr. Jun Jalbuena and his wife Kathy. Tracy is battling multiple myeloma, a cancer of the bone marrow; and is still in need of a bone marrow transplant.

In February, Adena received word that its Diabetes Education Program received accreditation by the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE). A serious health issue for many in our region, diabetes education has become a primary initiative for caregivers at Adena.

“Diabetes education is an important element in the care of all people with this disease,” said Adena’s Vice President of Clinical Integration Bambi Huffman. “We have worked to create a quality program that is making an impact on the lives of our patients. Achieving this accreditation is just one way Adena can demonstrate its dedication to providing quality diabetes care for our patients in the communities we serve.”

Later in the year, Adena held it’s first-ever Diabetes Expo at the PACCAR Medical Education Center. The event drew more than 200 people and provided information, shopping and cooking demonstrations and more. The information provided was so well-received and needed, it will become a regular event, with the next Diabetes Expo planned to be held in Waverly in the coming months.

Employing more than 3,000 caregivers, Adena is Ross County’s largest employer. The Health System generates millions into the region’s tax base, and its employees purchase goods and services from vendors throughout the area. In March, Adena was recognized by Becker’s Healthcare as one of the Top 150 Great Places to Work in Healthcare. Adena’s selection to the list was based on benefit offerings, wellness programs, commitment to diversity and inclusion, professional development opportunities, and for an environment that promotes employee satisfaction and a work-life balance.

“It is an honor to be nationally recognized for our employee programs,” said Adena President and CEO Mark Shuter. “Here at Adena, we firmly believe that in order to provide our patients with the best quality care possible, we must have a satisfied and engaged team of caregivers. By offering the benefits, support and tools needed to help them perform their duties; along with the opportunities for career growth and a work-life balance, we feel that Adena is well-positioned to achieve this goal.”

One month later, Adena was named a Gallup Great Workplace for the second consecutive year. The Gallup organization recognizes its winners as having “the most engaged workforces in the world.” According to Gallup, the recipients average nine engaged employees for every one actively disengaged employee, which is more than five times the rate in the U.S., and more than 16 times the rate for workforces globally.

Making healthcare as convenient as possible is part of creating a health system that always put the needs of our patients first. When patients expressed a desire for rehabilitative care that was closer to home, Adena looked at how to make that possible. The result was the May opening of the Adena Wellness Center West, located inside the former Cinema 6 building on Western Avenue. Now home to part of Adena’s Rehabilitation Services Department and Adena Home Care and Hospice, the facility is now meeting the needs of the more than 60-percent of patients living near the western edge of Ross County.

Recognizing the important role the community has in Adena’s success, the Health System celebrated 2015’s Hospital Week by giving back. In May, Adena President and CEO Mark Shuter spent much of National Hospital Week delivering gift cards valued at $11,805 to area schools and community organizations. The donations were collected by a number of departments within the Health System, and distributed throughout the area as way to thank the community for its support of Adena. 

As a teaching hospital, Adena’s education focus is reinforced in the annual support of the Adena Health Foundation Scholarship Awards. In 2015, $85,400 in scholarships were awarded to 62 students pursuing careers in Healthcare. Since 2002, the Adena Health Foundation has awarded more than a half-million dollars to students living in Adena’s 12-county service area.

“The Adena Health Foundation scholarships are made possible thanks to generous donors who share Adena’s vision to do our best to nurture the talent of future caregivers,” said Adena Health Foundation’s Executive Director Ralph Metzger.

Perhaps Adena’s most visible community-centric initiative was the renovation and opening of downtown Chillicothe’s historic Carlisle Building. After being vacant for more than 11 years, and following 16 months of construction, Adena marked the official opening on Oct. 19. “While Adena holds the lease and is the caretaker of the Carlisle Building, this historic structure belongs to Chillicothe,” said Adena President and CEO Mark Shuter. “With The Chesler Group, and many community and state partners, we have been able to give the building new life, and it is now serving as a catalyst for new investment in our downtown. As a community, we have a lot to celebrate.”

The 32,000 square-foot Carlisle Building met the needs of historic preservationists to save the 125 year old structure, brought new life to the city’s main downtown intersection, and achieved the vision of Adena’s leaders to utilize the building and to provide safe housing for medical students and some physician residents. The building now includes 32 student apartments and nearly 7,000 square feet of first-floor office space for the Adena Health Foundation, other community-facing personnel, and a meeting space.

To wrap up the year, Adena’s caregivers purchased coats for children in the region who were in need. Nearly 1,200 local children were presented to Adena’s annual Coats for Kids drive as being in need of a winter coat this year. Adena caregivers purchase coats, hats and gloves for the children. This winter, every child listed received a brand new coat to keep them warm. There were 120 students at Chillicothe’s Tiffin Elementary School in need of a coat this year, meeting their basic need for warm outerwear. Since it began four years ago, Adena’s caregivers have provided more than 5,000 coats to children in our community through its Coats for Kids program, which is led by a team of nurses and other caregivers.