Community

Fri
08
Mar

Local ThedaCare named a top critical access hospital


Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Julie Chikowski, left, vice president of ThedaCare critical access hospitals, looks over some results with Kim Rank, center, a registered nurse for the medical and surgery departments, and Paula Allen, a quality coordinator for ThedaCare. ThedaCare Medical Center-Shawano was recently named one of the top 100 critical access hospitals in the country.

More than three years after opening its new hospital facility, ThedaCare Medical Center-Shawano has been named one of the top 100 critical access hospitals in the country by the Chartis Center for Rural Health.

It was an honor that came as a pleasant surprise to Julie Chikowski, ThedaCare’s vice president for critical access hospitals, but it’s an honor she expects her 278 employees to maintain year after year. There are 1,348 critical access hospitals in the United States, so being in the top 100 puts the local medical centers is quite the feather in ThedaCare’s cap.

Chartis uses a 100-point system to look at a number of different aspects of hospitals — market shares for inpatients and outpatients, financial stability and value in quality, outcomes, patient perspective, cost and charge — and comes up with a quality rating. ThedaCare-Shawano received a 96.9 overall rating.

“We’re very, very excited about that. It’s huge,” Chikowski said.

Fri
08
Mar

North Star casino to sponsor tall ship

The Barque Picton Castle will join the fleet of ships at Nicolet Bank Tall Ships festival this summer in Wisconsin. It is a three-masted tall ship based in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, and is best known for its adventurous sail training voyages around the world.

The Tall Ships festival will start with a Parade of Sail in Green Bay from July 26-28, followed by a sail through Sturgeon Bay on July 29 and a sail past Algoma on July 30. The World’s Largest Rubber Duck will join the festival’s nine historic vessels — including the Picton Castle, which is being sponsored by North Star Mohican Casino Resort.

The festival, which will take place at Leicht Memorial Park in Green Bay, will also feature food and beverage vendors, a marketplace, children’s area, live entertainment and fireworks.

Tickets for general admission, all events and excursions will go on sale March 15 at tallshipswisconsin.com.

Fri
08
Mar

Livestock owners must register location by July 31

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, in partnership with the Wisconsin Livestock Identification Consortium, is reminding anyone who owns livestock to register the location where animals are kept. This is referred to as premises registration.

Whether you have one animal or thousands, and regardless if your facility is required to be licensed, state law requires any location that keeps livestock to be registered with DATCP. There is no cost to register, and the information you provide is confidential. The department uses the information to rapidly respond to animal disease outbreaks in order to protect animal health, the food supply, public safety and Wisconsin’s agriculture economy.

Thu
07
Mar

Proposal would change rules for veterans’ care

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is proposing new guidelines for veterans’ community care, and public input is being sought.

The proposal would change access standards in drive time and wait time for veterans seeking health care services, whether within the VA or with community providers. If veterans do not live near a full-service VA facility, for example, or are being asked to wait several weeks for an appointment, the proposal would help determine when those veterans could seek care with a different provider.

“Our medical services must meet our veterans’ needs,” said Robert Wilkie, VA secretary, in a statement earlier this year. “With VA’s new access standards, the future of the VA health care system will lie in the hands of veterans, exactly where it should be.”

Thu
07
Mar

Physicians encourage colon cancer screening

Cancer of the colon or rectum is the third-most common cancer in the U.S. and the second-leading cause of cancer deaths for men and women, according to the Centers for Disease Control. It is also one of the most preventable and treatable forms of cancer, if caught early.

“Regular screenings are the key to catching colorectal cancer early,” said Dr. Michael Williams, of ThedaCare.

In honor of March being National Colorectal Cancer Awareness month, the public is invited to an informational session Thursday in the Wolf River Room at ThedaCare Physicians-Shawano, 100 County Road B. “Cookies and Colons” will start at 5 p.m. Williams and fellow family medicine physician Dr. Benjamin Schlais will present information about colon cancer and colonoscopies, and staff from ThedaCare Medical Center-Shawano’s Surgery Center will also be on hand to answer questions.

Sat
02
Mar

Will March’s early roar mean spring is soon at hand?

It’s March today, and woe is me, is that snow I see? I was not looking for that lion, but let it roar, because that means, according to lore, that it will go out like a gentle lamb.

January ended in a deep freeze, and I was looking forward to the shorter month of February, ready to fall in love by the 14th, with the longer days and warmer temperatures. So far, the only thing short is the sunshine and warmth. We certainly have had no shortage of snow.

Snowmobilers might be enjoying it, I, personally, enjoy the pretty scenery it presents, but there is not much else to recommend, except it’s not ice. That ice is not nice. It formed on parking lots, driveways and roadways last weekend and has turned all surfaces into skating rinks. With the cooler temperatures, it will take some time and warm sun to make it safe to walk on. I will admit, the longer days are nice, and the sun, when it shines, has some warmth.

Sat
02
Mar

Story of Shawano’s history interwoven in newspapers

Through the years, several newspapers served our area. One of the first papers was the Venture. Its primary purpose was to publish the delinquent tax lists. After a few years, John Wiley, the county treasurer, turned the lists over to two of his friends who started the Journal. Without access to the lists, the Venture closed.

The Shawano Journal began publication in 1859. Over the years, it was sold several times. In 1912, Milton Stanley, a former school superintendent of Oconto, purchased it. Mr. Stanley was known for his frank and colorful editorials. The Journal supported the interests of the Republican Party. The Shawano Journal published its final issue on Aug. 30, 1951.

Sat
02
Mar

Determination vital in dealing with stubborn Black Angus

Determination: Resolve. Willpower. Grit. Fortitude.

Determination is a frame of mind that takes over, blocking out all other daunting factors. When I see that in my husband’s eye and it’s between him and an ornery bull, guess which one wins?

Because we have decided to downsize our herd of Black Angus, we’ve been culling every now and then, when we have the opportunity and some help on the farm. We reached out to a strong young man, 20-something, who trucks. He has a sturdy, dual-wheeled trailer and a cocky, sure manner around animals. He actually scares me with his bravado but bravado is what it takes; that and the ability to, quick as a deer, hop a fence when the need arises.

Sat
02
Mar

NOT GUIDANCE COUNSELORS


Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Olga Brener Intermediate School counselors Kyle Vanden Hinden and Rhonda Uelmer received the Program of Progress, the highest award offered by the Wisconsin School Counselors Association, for their work in dealing with students’ academic, social, emotional and career needs. The pair will be formally making a report to the Shawano School Board on Monday.

Rhonda Uelmer and Kyle Vanden Heiden spend their days tending to the academic, social, emotional and career needs of more than 500 students at Olga Brener Intermediate School.

Just don’t call them guidance counselors. Uelmer considers that a term best left in the 1990s with the Macarena.

Olga Brener has something new to boast about after an announcement that its counselors have received a prestigious award. Uelmer and Vander Heiden received the Program of Promise award from the Wisconsin School Counselor Association during a Feb. 7 conference in Madison. Program of Promise is WSCA’s highest honor.

“Some of our purpose is the same as the high school. We have the same standards and the same guidelines as the high school,” Uelmer said. “Ours just looks a little different. Something that’s social/emotional for a third grader is not the same as it is for someone who is in high school.”

Fri
01
Mar

Hmong American is focus of Wisconsin Biographies story

The first Hmong American elected to public office in Wisconsin is the subject of a new, online Wisconsin Biographies story being shared with schoolchildren across the state. “Joe Bee Xiong: War to Peace” documents the life of a former child soldier and first-generation Hmong refugee, who later made his home in Eau Claire.

“In September 2017, we surveyed educators from the Eau Claire Area School District and learned that there was a need for more digital learning resources that helped students learn about the Hmong,” said Becky Marburger, education producer for Wisconsin Public Television Education, which produced the biography.

Marburger added that while talking with state educators, historians and experts in Hmong culture, “Joe Bee Xiong’s name was regularly brought up as someone whom we should feature in the Wisconsin Biographies’ story.”

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