John Schultz Interview on WOAY
WOAY interviewd New River Health's new CEO, John Schultz.
School Health Forms are Now Available Online
Need an immnunization consent form for your school based health center? Forms are now online for your convenience. Check out our School Health Page.
New River Health and Congressman Rahall Honor Helen Powell
New River Health Association honored our long time board member and women's health advocate Helen Powell in a ceremony Tuesday October 18th in the new conference room at the Robinson Annex. Dave Sotak started out the ceremony introducing Congressman Rahall who spoke enthusiastically about the work of community health centers like New River Health that serve 1 in 5 West Virginians. The Congressman spoke about the recent American Recovery and Reinvestment Act projects that have improved facilities At New River Health while at the same time providing 6.5 new full time jobs here. He then went on to warmly praise the work of Helen Powell, friend, advocate, community member and board member of New River Health for more than 28 years. A stone dedicating her service has been placed in front of the women's health center in Whipple. Ms. Powell was deeply moved.
New River Health Association Gains National Quality Recognition
New River Health Association has achieved the National Committee for Quality Assurance’s highest level of recognition as a Patient-Centered Medical Home for five of its primary care sites.
NCQA informed New River Health last week that its Scarbro, Whipple, Gulf Family Practice, Lisa Elliott Center and North Fayette clinics had each received Level 3 Recognition.
“This is a terrific honor and one that we’re very proud to share with our clinical and support staff, our patients and our communities,” said CEO Dave Sotak. “It shows that the community health center model of high-quality, affordable and accessible primary care really does work.”
Patient-Centered Medical Homes employ evidence-based processes that emphasize long-term relationships in which patients and, when appropriate, their families take an active role in their own care.
“The idea is to promote an ongoing partnership between our patients and their personal clinicians, so that we can meet all of their health care needs and coordinate treatment with other medical providers, if that becomes necessary,” Sotak explained.
The three NCQA Recognition levels allow practices with a range of capabilities and sophistication to meet the organization’s standards. Level 3 is the highest awarded.
NCQA standards include six “must-pass” elements that are considered essential to the patient-centered medical home, and are required for practices at all recognition levels. These elements include: access during office hours; use of data for population management; care management; support of the patient self-care process; the ability to track referrals and follow-up care; and, the implementation of continuous quality improvement.
New River Health is a private, nonprofit organization that has provided quality primary patient care in Fayette and Raleigh counties for 30 years. It is a member of the West Virginia Primary Care Association, which comprises 30 community health centers and 160 locations, serving one in five Mountain State residents.
September is Recovery Month
National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month (Recovery Month) is celebrated each September in communities across the country to help people recognize that substance use disorders are treatable and recovery is possible. Treatment and other recovery support programs are as effective as treatment for other chronic conditions such as diabetes or heart disease—yet nationally, only 10% of Americans who need treatment for substance use disorders actually receive it, according to the 2008 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Recovery Month encourages people affected by addiction to seek treatment and recovery services so they can reclaim healthy lives in their local community.
New River Health Association partners with many local organizations to identify substance abuse (SA) problems early and refer to services as necessary. Primary care providers include questions about substance use in a complete health history. We participate in an early screening and brief intervention program (SBIRT) with the local community mental health center (FMRS Health Systems, www.fmrs.org) by locating their clinician in several of our sites. NR patients are often referred to FMRS for SA intensive out-patient or residential treatment. We also have our own mental health team to assist primary care providers with assessment and collaborative treatment. The MH team is actively involved in the NR Chronic Pain-Interdisciplinary Team (CP-IDT) to help providers help patients follow the protocol for best practices when using prescribed opiate medications. NR providers refer patients to local Alcoholics Anonymous (www.aawv.org) and Narcotics Anonymous (mrscna.org) meetings and meeting schedules are freely available and distributed. In fact, a Friday noon AA meeting takes place in our administrative building, the Robinson Annex, each week. NR also partners with the Fayette County Commission by providing a certified addictions counselor for group treatment at the Fayette County Day Report Center which is an alternative to incarceration for non-violent offenders who maintain sobriety.
Recovery Month is sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (www.samhsa.gov) Center for Substance Abuse within the US Department of Health and Human Services. This year marks the 21st annual celebration of Recovery Month, which honors people in recovery from substance use disorders as well as those who provide treatment and recovery services, and promotes the need for treatment access and long-term recovery.
Submitted by Gail Kinsey, MA,LPC
Gulf Pharmacy Now Open
New River health opened a new pharmacy location at 302 W. Main Street in downtown Sophia. Currently the Gulf Family Practice Pharmacy is open only to New River Health patients. It is open Monday - Friday from 8-5. Call with any questions 304 683 3809
New River Health Remembers and Thanks Roy "Shorty" Withrow
Tribute to Roy "Shorty" by Dan Doyle, MD
Shorty Withrow was one of the first people to greet us when Linda and I first visited Oak Hill in April 1977. We met at the Summerlee UMWA Union Hall on a Sunday afternoon. Other people attending the meeting were Paul Lively, Edith Dempsey, Alice Hymon, and Sparky Holmes. Craig Robinson, who was then working as a clinic organizer for the UMWA, brought Linda and me to the meeting.
The meeting went well. We were able to talk with each other and discovered that we had a lot of common goals for health care. Linda and I liked the area. Withinn the next few weeks, New River Health Association offered to hire Craig and me as a leadership team of administrator and medical director. We accepted and the work began.
...At that point NRHA had no building, no money and no staff. We started from scratch. We had counted on a retainer arrangement with the UMWA funds which had helped start other coalfield clinics. But in November a 110 day coal strike started and a long cold winter began for many coal mining families in West Virginia. When it ended there was no more UMWA Funds retainer. So we turned to other sources of funding including the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and the Fayette County Commission.
During that winter we kept working. The Withrow home on the back alley in Scarbro was the unofficial headquarters for New River Health. Sis always had on a pot of coffee and something to eat. The board would meet in the game room over the garage. Shorty was a one-man building committee. During the strike, on the coldest of days, he was down working in the old warehouse building along the creek, turning that space into a clinic with three exam rooms, a small lab area, reception area, and waiting room. Shorty also recruited Alice Hymon and Kenny Dangerfield from Wingrove to come on to the board...
Shorty and Sparky Holmes went to the New River Coal Company in Mount Hope and got them to donate the old Wingrove Slate Dump site for us to build a larger, modern clinic. Many locations were considered for the clinic, but Shorty really wanted it to be in his town of Scarbro. And he won out.
Craig and I thought we needed an architect to design the first temporary clinic and then the new larger one down the road. Shorty couldn't see why. He had built lots of things without architects; it was simple. Seemed like a waste of money to him. But he bent and gracefully went along with this new idea nd lots of other ones as time went by...
No one was prouder than Shorty when we opened the first clinic in that red warehouse building on June 8, 1978 and when Governor Jay Rockefeller helped us dedicate the new Scarbro Clinic on April 18, 1980...
Shorty continued to serve on the Board of New River Health for 32 years. During those years, he was amazed and proud to see his project flourish and meet important community needs. Amazed to see us go from one site to more than twenty. Amazed to see our staff grow to more than 100 employees...He and the other board members never lost their nerve, continuing to pick good leaders and make good decisions. Shorty chaired the building committee through all those new buidlings and growth projects.
Roy Shorty Withrow was many things to many people. But to me he was a friend and teacher. I am grateful for his trust and partnership over the years as we shared the adventure of buidling and expanding a community health center open to all, regardless of ability to pay. Shorty, we have already been missing you; but we will never forget you.
May is Asthma and Allergy Month
Asthma and Allergies are conditions that affect people of all cultures, all walks of life, and all ages. Certain times of the year can be worse than others and various substances, called allergens can trigger symptoms or make them worse.
Some common allergens include pollen, animal dander, house dust, feathers and various foods. Some studies have indicated that one in every six Americans is hypersensitive to one or more allergens.
Asthma is a respiratory disorder characterized by recurring episodes of shortness of breath, wheezing on breathing in or out, that is caused by constriction of the bronchi, coughing, and thick mucoid secretions. These episodes may be caused by inhalation of allergens or pollutants, infection, cold air, vigourous exercise, or emotional stress.
There are several effective treatments for both conditions, talk to your NRHA provider to find out more about available testing and treatment.
Mt. Hope Dental Clinic is Open!
Our dental clinic in Mt. Hope opened April 6th. The location is equipped with x-ray capabilities and full-service dental care. The dentist is available every Tuesday, all day. Call for an appointment 304 574 2076
January is Cervical Cancer Screening Month
Start screening with pap tests at age 21 or 3 years after becoming sexually active.Continue screening every 1-2 years under age 30 and every 2-3 years over the age of 30 once there have been 3 consecutive normal tests
Stop screening at age 65-70 if regular screening tests have been normal
No screening is needed if there has been a hysterectomy for benign reasons
If hysterectomy for dysplasia screening can be stopped after 3 annual normal tests
Services are available through the Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening and Family Planning Programs for those who qualify
Prevention—3 doses of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine (Gardasil) is recommended for girls age 9-26 to prevent the most common cause of cervical cancer