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Substance abuse in older adults

The aging of our population is a hot topic as our profession prepares for future health care needs, says Judi Leibrock, Nebraska Licensee Assistance Program (LAP) Coordinator.  This means we have an aging health care professional population, too.

This article, Nursing Standard of Practice Protocol: Substance Abuse in Older Adults, provides helpful information on substance abuse in the older adult.  This may be of benefit to older health care professionals or those who care for them.

The Nebraska Licensee Assistance Program (LAP) provides variety of alcohol/drug abuse and addiction services for Nebraska health services licensees. More information can be found on their Web site at www.lapne.org.

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Department Showcase December 2010

Nestled in the scenic valleys created by the Republican River, Medicine Creek and the Beaver Creek, you’ll find Tri Valley Health System. From our hospital located in Cambridge to the medical clinics throughout the valleys, and the Assisted Living Facility, you and your family’s quest for healthier, happier lives will draw you here to us.

We just opened our state-of-the-art, 53,000-square-foot new facility on October 11, 2010, which was a very exiting thing to be a part of.  Our patients are so very loyal and they deserve to be taken care of in a beautiful setting with the highest quality care available today.

Our department pretty much does it all.  We do nuclear stress testing five times a month, inpatient care at a 25-bed critical access hospital,  pulmonary function testing, EKGs, holter and event monitoring, cardiac and pulmonary rehab. We also have a very active emergency room with the newest in monitoring and ventilatory devices.

One very unique aspect of our department is that our medical providers have embraced the therapist-driven protocols that I have put before them.  We get to treat each patient individually and focus on what their therapeutic needs are.  Now that is EXCITING stuff!

We staff every newborn delivery whether it is a natural birth or a caesarian delivery.  We perform the APGARs and assessments with the attending medical provider.  We were able to purchase two new Neopuff resuscitation delivery devices with our new infant warmers, and we couldn’t be any more thrilled with them.

Please come visit anytime and see what Tri Valley Health System is all about.

Allison J. Krutsinger BS, RRT

 

 

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Meet Michelle Hruska, NE LAP Counselor

Michelle recently completed her first six months as the LAP Counselor in September 2010.  She is a Licensed Independent Mental Health Practitioner and a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor.  Michelle earned her Bachelor of Arts in Human Services degree from the College of St. Mary in Omaha and her Master of Counseling degree from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Michelle has 10 years of experience in the substance abuse field working with children, adolescents and adults in dual-diagnosis treatment settings ranging from outpatient to residential treatment centers.  She has provided alcohol/drug assessments and alcohol and drug counseling for individuals, families and groups.

According to Michelle, coming to the NE LAP has been a change from her previous position. “I’m used to being the counselor working with clients in long-term treatment to provide the necessary information to establish and maintain a healthy recovery.  In addition, I worked with many families involved in the juvenile justice system that were mandated to attend treatment.  All too often, the last place my clients wanted to be was sitting in the chair across from me.  I tried to make it the best possible experience it could be for them by listening to what they were thinking, how they were feeling and how I could best help them at this time.  I can apply this same approach to working with professionals in the NE LAP.”

“My experience thus far is that many of the professionals feel a great deal of shame for decisions they have made.  They have worked hard in their chosen profession and cannot understand or accept what they have done.  For many, I feel this is a starting point.  When they attend the alcohol/drug assessment, it gives them an opportunity to tell their story.  My hope is that they are able to move away from the guilt, shame and possible denial and gain some understanding and hope for the future.”

“I recently had the pleasure of running into a previous client who was an adolescent when I worked with him.  He thanked me for all the work I did with him and for putting up with him on his bad days.  I reminded him he did all the work, I just supported him when I could and challenged him when he needed it.  I believe I am here to help support the professionals in the NE LAP program and challenge them when they need it so they can move on just as he did.  The greatest feeling I experience as a counselor is when someone says ‘I get it’ and moves forward in their recovery and on with a healthy life.”

“I feel fortunate to have this opportunity to work with the NE LAP.  I feel the program is a stepping stone for professionals that are seeking a better life for themselves and their families through an increased understanding of their addiction and their recovery.”

If you are a licensed health service professional wanting more information about alcohol/drug abuse or addiction treatment or would like to schedule an educational presentation on alcohol/drug addiction and the health service professional, contact the NE LAP at (800) 851-2336 or (402) 354-8055 or visit our Web site at www.lapne.org .

Nebraska LAP September 2010 Newsletter

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Husker Harvest Days 2010 ‘a success’

This year we had another great opportunity to promote COPD awareness and education at Husker Harvest Days, held Sept. 14-16 in Grand Island.  We hosted the DRIVE4COPD campaign in our attempt to contribute towards the AARC’s goal of 500,000 screened in 2010.  We completed 250 screeners and had that many and more opportunities to educate people about lung disease and the role that respiratory therapists have in the diagnosis and treatment of lung diseases.
The NSRC would like to thank the many volunteers who took time out of their busy schedules to make this event a success: Sheri Trindle, Monica Eder, Rachel Stubbs, Stacy Cabela, Sofronia Jackson, Bill Bonner, Megan Mescher, Stacie Hoeman, Paula Hunke-Davis and Jenny Bush. We’d also like to thank Chris Hamilton for encouraging her respiratory students to participate in community education events: Christin Nott, Alicia Peters and Megan Wiseman.

Kathy Geier-Craft
NSRC Public Relations Chair

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PACT 2010 meetings seek support for bills

The Nebraska Society for Respiratory Care representatives at the PACT Meetings on Capitol Hill this year were Darcy O’Brien-Genrich, Omaha, Linda Nelson, Imperial, and Nancy Nathenson, Lincoln.

Their goal was to garner co-sponsorship of S 342 and HR1077 from our state senators Ben Nelson and Mike Johanns and our Congressmen Adrien Smith, Jeff Fortenberry and Lee Terry. Passage of these bills would provide access to respiratory therapy services for the Medicare pulmonary patient outside of the hospital setting in such sites covered under Medicare Part B including rural health clinics, physician offices, skilled nursing facilities, hospices and outpatient departments.

They also requested support for legislation that would authorize the Chronic Disease Division at CDC to establish a permanent COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) program.

The AARC placed a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in a solemn ceremony attended by AARC members from across the nation.

With Senator Johanns.
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