President’s Update for April 12, 2013

In this edition...

SEARHC Welcomes a new COO, Dan Neumeister

I want to take this opportunity to introduce Dan Neumeister who has taken over as the new Chief Operating Officer (COO) on Monday, April 8, 2013. Dan is a Senior Healthcare Executive with a 25+ year record of distinguished service as both CEO and COO. He has a reputation as a trusted leader who develops high-performing teams, while building cultures of collaboration and accountability. Dan has been the principal of Neumeister Healthcare Management Services, an independent consulting firm that provides strategic guidance and an array of management services to mid-size and critical-access hospitals nationwide. He specializes in revitalizing organizations in the areas of financial performance; quality improvements; strategic planning; culture transformations; physician recruitment; collaboration and team building; and regulatory accreditation.  

He recently completed an interim assignment as CEO at Chase Brexton Health Services, a group of five FQHC clinics throughout the greater Baltimore area. From 2009-10 as Hospital Administrator at ANMC significantly improved financial performance, guiding ANMC from $6M loss in FY2008 to a $3M surplus in FY2009. Working with the Medical Staff and employees, ANMC Reversed declines in quality and patient safety within seven months, guiding ANMC to full JCAHO accreditation. He’s been successful in various leadership positions throughout his career including non-profit community based tertiary medical centers, district hospitals, critical access hospitals, and federally qualified health centers and clinics. He was the CEO of Enloe Medical Center for nine years and the COO at Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital for eight years. Dan received his BS in Management from San Diego State University and his MS in Healthcare Administration from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. He’s located in Sitka, so please join us in providing him with a warm welcome.


Gathering Incredible Edibles!

SEARHC POW Health Promotion would like to invite everyone to join them in a spring gathering event to be held on Sat., April 20th at 2pm. Everyone’s to meet at the Alicia Roberts Medical Center conference room (side door) and car pool to a nearby harvesting area. Cyndi Reeves, Alaskan gatherer, will be the guide and some of the edible greens they’re hoping to find are:  fireweed sprouts, marsh marigolds and fiddlehead ferns. Please wear appropriate clothes and boots for the weather. For more information, call June May at 755-4959.


SEARHC Dental

SEARHC Dental brought in a contract Oral Surgeon, Dr Clayton Harper to Sitka. The primary goal was to remove wisdom teeth for Mt Edgecumbe High School students in need of that service. He also provided didactic and hands on training for Dental Residents and staff. Additionally, he did some training and treatment in SEARHC's Juneau Dental Clinic.


The Juneau Police Department

The Juneau Police Department would like Juneau residents, especially parents, to be aware of a newly available designer drug called 25i that is linked to several medical emergencies in Juneau over the last month. Parents should be aware of the drugs appearance. In Juneau the drug has been found to be soaked into blotter paper, possibly perforated in small ‘dosage’ squares. The delivery mechanism looks similar to LSD. The drug can cause violent behavior, disorientation, seizures and death.

JPD has sent a sample of 25i collected in Juneau to the State Crime Lab in Anchorage. Current information from the Crime Lab indicates 25i produces symptoms similar to Ecstasy. This drug can be dangerous at small dosages so anyone finding the drug should use caution when touching it and turn it over to JPD for disposal rather than adding it to the water system or the landfill. There are national reports of death around the country from 25i. In addition, we announced this on the SEARHC Facebook page the other day.


Congratulations to Randy McPherson

Randy McPherson, Human Resources Generalist in Juneau for his recently completed PHR certification.  The designation stands for Professional in Human Resources.  In order to attain this certification one must take a comprehensive exam covering every aspect of Human Resource Management.  This is very difficult to attain and requires extensive study.  Please congratulate Randy when you see him.

Charles Clement

Just a reminder...


Applications are still available for the SEARHC Summer Internship Program

The SEARHC Summer Internship Program provides opportunities for six Native students who are studying at the high school, bachelor’s degree and/or master’s degree/clinical level. The program allows participants to explore career options in health care, and the interns receive valuable on-the-job training in their health care career of interest and a minimal hourly stipend. At the end of the program, interns will receive a performance evaluation with valuable feedback from their mentor(s). Students must be enrolled tribal members or descendants as certified through a Certificate of Indian Blood (CIB) and currently be enrolled full-time in high school, college or vocational school with a minimum GPA of 2.5. To apply, students must complete a SEARHC Summer Internship Application, a SEARHC job application, provide two letters of recommendation (from teachers, counselors, employers, tribal leaders, etc.), a copy of the student’s current resume and a copy of the student’s current college transcripts.

The application deadline is Friday, May 10 (the application must be received or postmarked by this date), and the final selection of interns takes place on May 17. The internship program runs from June through September 2013. Completed applications may be mailed to Jessika Beam (966-8903) at SEARHC, c/o Human Resources Department, 222 Tongass Drive, Sitka, AK 99835. Applications also can be faxed to 966-8527, or scanned and e-mailed to jessika.beam@searhc.org. Because space is limited, interested students should apply early. Application packets are available at Southeast Alaska high school offices, through local tribal organizations or by going to http://searhc.org/students/summer-internships.


SEARHC hosts 24/7 crisis help line, toll-free at 1-877-294-0074:

A personal or family crisis doesn't always happen during clinic hours, so the SEARHC Behavioral Health Division has contracted with a crisis call center to provide help for Southeast Alaska residents when they need it most. The SEARHC Help Line is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and it will be staffed with a team of master's-degree-level mental health therapists who will listen and provide effective, compassionate care. This line provides confidential telephone counseling for people during a time of mental health crisis, and it is not just an answering service. The counselors will assess the situation and provide appropriate intervention using protocols developed with SEARHC Behavioral Health. Follow-up calls from SEARHC Behavioral Health or our partner agencies will be made the next business day. For more information, contact SEARHC Behavioral Health/Suicide Prevention Program Manager Wilbur Brown at 966-8753.


SEARHC provides 24/7 on-call travel coordinators for patients traveling for care:

SEARHC has a 24/7 on-call travel coordinator to assist patients needing after-hours help while traveling for a medical appointment. The on-call staff person helps patients find new connections when a plane is diverted by weather, or assists with late-night housing. For assistance, call 1-800-916-8566 (toll-free in Alaska) or 1-907-966-8345 in Sitka, and then follow the prompts. To help us better help you, please call as soon as you know your travel schedule has been changed. For patients needing assistance from the Community Resources Program (contract health), such as emergency health care while traveling, call 1-866-966-8316 (toll-free).