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"One Book, One Community" to address drug addiction crisis

While opiate addiction is tearing communities apart, the Pickaway County District Public Library is using it as an opportunity to bring the county together. Alongside Berger Health Foundation and the Pickaway Addiction Action Coalition (PAAC), the library is building off last year’s success by continuing the second-annual “One Book, One Community” program.

In this year’s edition of the program, “Dreamland” by Sam Quinones will be the book of discussion. The community will have the opportunity to read the book, which delves into the drug addiction crisis, and then attend panels to further discuss the content. To make sure there would be enough copies for patrons to read, Berger Health Foundation donated 50 additional books to the library.

“Opiate addiction is not only in the big cities – it is everywhere, and in every social class,” said Mollie Hedges, PAAC Secretary. “We need to be conscious that it is spreading rapidly, and it affects all aspects of the community. This discussion will be interesting, informational and a little alarming. It is important, however, for our community to be aware of this epidemic and to have the resources necessary to combat it.”

“Berger Health Foundation has been wonderful to work with as they have invested a lot of time and advertising into ‘One Book, One Community,’” said Michelle Callahan with the Pickaway County Library.

The program s giving participants a near two-month timetable to read the book, with the first panel discussion falling on February 22nd at 6:30 p.m. The panel, titled “When Drug Addiction Knocks on Your Door,” will be held at the in one of the library’s meeting rooms.

Five more panel discussions will follow, with the next one scheduled for Saturday, March 11th, at 10:30 a.m. This panel, as well as the next one on March 22nd at 7 p.m., will discuss the book itself.

The third panel is set for Wednesday, April 5th at 6:30 p.m., and will feature local law enforcement and discussions on ways in which the community and the police can work together to combat the crisis. The fourth panel, set to take place on April 19th at 6:30 p.m., will discuss drug treatment options. The final panel will feature author Sam Quinones, and will take place at Circleville High School Auditorium.

“I was thrilled with the success of last year’s initial One Book, One Community program,” Callahan said. “This year’s book is also important to our community. We encourage people to read the book and then attend one or more of the programs to discuss how we can cope with addiction in our community.”

With such a complex issue, Callahan says she welcomes different perspectives from a wide array of people.

“Awareness and education can improve our community and how deal with this issue. We want people from all walks of life to participate.”

 

Sam Quinones - Journalist and Author

Website:  www.samquinones.com

Blog:  www.samquinones.com/reporters-blog

Instagram:   samquinones7  

Twitter:  @samquinones7

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/samquinones7 

 

 

 

Is it time to update your estate plan?

Take these six steps for a fresh estate plan:

1. Update your estate plan. Through a new will or revocable living trust—or a codicil or amendment modifying your old documents—you can address changes in your life and leave a legacy for the future.

Changes That Trigger an Update

  • Your family. With births, deaths, marriages or divorces, you may want to add or remove beneficiaries or increase or decrease their shares of your estate.
  • Your property. Events such as growth (or decline) in the value of your estate, the acquisition of a new home, or the sale or gift of property may necessitate changes to bequest provisions.
  • Your new location. Your estate plan should be updated if you move to a new state. Different requirements for the execution of a will or trust as well as different state inheritance taxes and probate laws may make revisions necessary. Contact an estate planning attorney in your new state.
  • Your charitable interests. Will your good works continue after your lifetime? Consider including a bequest to Berger Health Foundation by designating a percentage of your estate for our use.

2. Review your choice of executor. Recognizing the intricacies of estate settlement, you may want to consider a professional fiduciary for the role as co-executor to serve with your individual executor. A professional fiduciary is an individual or institution that acts as a representative for the assets of others. A fiduciary's experience in saving taxes and prudently managing investments can be invaluable.

3. Look over the beneficiary designations of your life insurance, retirement plans and IRAs. These should be coordinated with your overall estate plan to make sure your entire estate is left the way you intend. If you want to remember Berger Health System in your plans, retirement assets are the most highly taxed assets to leave to your family, making them excellent charitable gifts to support our mission.

4. Create a durable power of attorney. This authorizes someone you choose—perhaps your spouse or another trusted family member—to handle your financial affairs during your lifetime when you are unable to do so.

5. Execute a power of attorney for health care (part of the Advanced Health Care Directives). This empowers someone you choose to make health care decisions on your behalf if you are unable to make them yourself.

6. Sign a living will (part of the Advanced Health Care Directives). This tells people what life-sustaining medical treatment you want to receive, if any, if you become terminally ill and can no longer communicate your own decisions.

If you have questions about creating or updating your estate plans, contact your estate planning attorney. If you'd like to include Berger Health Foundation in your estate plans, contact Larry Halm today at 740.420.8209 or larry.halm@bergerhealth.com to learn which gifts are best for your particular situation.

Berger Hospital recognized as Emergency Center of Excellence

CIRCLEVILLE — Berger Hospital has been verified as an Emergency Center of Excellence by Emergency Excellence, an organization specializing in emergency department (ED) benchmarking. This is the third time Berger Hospital has accomplished this achievement, putting it into a very elite group of high-performing emergency departments.

"We are honored to be recognized as an Emergency Center of Excellence," stated Tim Colburn, president and CEO of Berger Health System. "Our emergency department and hospital staff work very well together as a team to provide high quality patient-centered care."

Berger Hospital qualified for the Emergency Center of Excellence designation by having superior results of over 100 key performance indicators linked to seven Pillars of Excellence (Safety, Satisfaction, Space, Staff, Support, Systems, and Solvency). Emergency Excellence collects benchmark data and surveys physicians, nurses, hospital staff, medical staff, and administrators. The Emergency Center of Excellence award is verified after an on-site assessment.

Berger Hospital sees over 28,000 patients a year in its emergency department. Due to its streamlined processes, on average, patients see a physician within 19 minutes of arrival. "Berger Hospital's emergency department offers a truly outstanding experience for their patients," said Dr. Mark Reiter, CEO of Emergency Excellence. "Physician-nurse relationships are great, which translates into excellent patient care. Patients move through the ED efficiently with minimal waiting time."

"Our success is very dependent on the extremely talented, caring individuals that care for our patients, as well as the dedicated staff and administration that support our ED team. We appreciate the community's support in trusting us with their care," added Colburn.

Emergency Excellence developed the award in response to the 2006 Institute of Medicine's call for emergency department improvement and to motivate emergency care providers to achieve a higher standard of quality.

Berger Health System earns 'A' grade for patient safety

CIRCLEVILLE — The independent hospital watchdog, The Leapfrog Group, released report cards for hospitals nationwide on the subject of patient safety. The grading scales of A, B, C, D and F were calculated on ratings for hospital errors, injuries, accidents and infections during patients' hospital stays. Berger Health System earned the top grade of an "A" in this elite national ratings program.

The Hospital Safety Score is the gold standard rating for patient safety. The Hospital Safety Score is free to the public and designed to give consumers information they can use to protect themselves and their families when facing a hospital stay.

"This is a prestigious honor we share with our medical staff and all of our employees at Berger Health System. The national award recognizes Berger Health System's excellence, safety initiatives and the board's continuous efforts to enhance patient care," said Tim Colburn, president and chief executive officer.

Leapfrog's Blue Ribbon Expert Panel developed the Hospital Safety Score using 28 measures of publicly available hospital safety data to assess a hospital's overall capacity to keep patients safe from preventable harm. "Berger Health System's A grade is a powerful reminder of its commitment to putting patient safety above all else, and we are pleased to recognize the persistent efforts of your clinicians and staff to protect your patients," said Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group, which administers the Hospital Safety Score.

More than 2,500 U.S. general hospitals were assigned scores in October 2015, with 773 hospitals receiving an A grade. The Hospital Safety Score is fully transparent, offering a full analysis of the data and methodology used in determining grades on the website.

To see Berger Health System's full score, and to access consumer-friendly tips for patients and loved ones visiting the hospital, visit www.hospitalsafetyscore.org or follow The Hospital Safety Score on Twitter or Facebook. Consumers can also download the free Hospital Safety Score mobile app for Apple and Android devices.

About The Leapfrog Group

Founded in 2000 by large employers and other purchasers, The Leapfrog Group is a national nonprofit organization driving a movement for giant leaps forward in the quality and safety of American health care. The flagship Leapfrog Hospital Survey collects and transparently reports hospital performance, empowering purchasers to find the highest-value care and giving consumers the lifesaving information they need to make informed decisions. Hospital Safety Score, Leapfrog's other main initiative, assigns letter grades to hospitals based on their record of patient safety, helping consumers protect themselves and their families from errors, injuries, accidents, and infections.

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