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Rural Health Leadership Radio™

Over the last ten years, over 100 rural hospitals have closed their doors. Roughly one in three rural hospitals have been identified as “at risk.” If there was ever a need for strong leadership, that time is now. RHLR’s mission is to provide a forum to have conversations with rural health leaders to discuss and share ideas about what is working, what is not working, lessons learned, success stories, strategies, things to avoid and anything else you want to talk and hear about. RHLR provides a voice for rural health. The only investment is your time, and our goal is to make sure you receive a huge return on your investment. For more information, visit www.rhlradio.com or e-mail bill@billauxier.com.
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Now displaying: 2022
Feb 15, 2022

Nurse staffing shortages is a hot topic, not just in rural America, but everywhere, making nurse education ever more important. Educating nurses and preparing them to take care of the members of their community requires educational leadership. Hear how one nurse educator is making a difference in rural Tennessee as we talk about educational challenges and generational differences. We are having that discussion with Dr. Christie Manasco, Assistant Professor at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, College of Nursing.

“A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others.’

~Dr. Christie Manasco

Dr. Christie Manasco is a registered nurse with broad experience and expertise in nursing, education, leadership, and administration. Dr. Manasco is a full-time assistant professor at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, where she teaches in the undergraduate nursing program and is engaged in developing initiatives that promote equity and reduce health disparities for rural and underserved populations. Prior to this appointment, Dr. Manasco served as Assistant Dean of Nursing, Lambuth, where she was responsible for the planning, implementation, and evaluation of an undergraduate nursing program. In this role, she helped develop, grow, and lead the first public baccalaureate nursing program in Jackson, TN.

Additionally, she served as manager for a leading global corporation in the delivery of human patient simulation, learning applications, and training. She began her career in academics at Union University where she served as Assistant Professor/Director of Undergraduate Education for the Center of Excellence in Healthcare. Recently, Dr. Manasco is part of a UTHSC College of Nursing grant team that was awarded a $1.5 million dollar HRSA grant to increase the supply, distribution, and retention of certified Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners who can provide timely, trauma-informed care for all sexual assault survivors in West Tennessee.

Feb 8, 2022

Nurse practitioners can truly make a difference in rural healthcare. When working in rural, you are often on your own, and you never know what healthcare challenges you may face from one day to the next. That is why this conversation today is so important because today we are talking with two nurse leaders who are doing something about helping nurse practitioners grow in confidence to be prepared for whatever walks through their doors.

"We want to make sure they are well prepared for anything that comes into the office."

~Dr. Anne Hirsch

Dr. Anne Hirsch, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at UW School of Nursing, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Child, Family, and Population Health Nursing and is the UW Premera RNHI Project Director. 

A native of Anacortes, WA, Dr. Hirsch is passionate about the health of rural and underserved communities and is dedicated to promoting equitable access to primary care in rural counties of Washington state. Clinically, Dr. Hirsch provides care to homeless families and teens as a Family Nurse Practitioner. She has led statewide innovative programs to improve education access through online programs, co-chaired a design team to formulate a master plan for nursing education in Washington, co-chaired a sub-committee of the Washington Nursing Action Coalition to enact these recommendations, and was recently appointed by Governor Jay Inslee to serve on the coordinating committee to establish core performance measures for healthcare (the only educator or nurse practitioner appointed to this key policy-setting committee).

Through academic leadership roles, she has helped establish a Ph.D. program at Washington State University (WSU) and two Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) programs at WSU and Seattle University. Dr. Hirsch has successfully brought the WSU and Seattle University Colleges of Nursing and the UW School of Nursing through Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accreditation reviews, and currently co-chairs the CCNE Accreditation Review Committee. Dr. Hirsch is a Fellow in the Academy of Nurse Practitioners and a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing.

Dr. Heather Novak, Medical Education Program Director, is a Nurse Practitioner at Valley View Health Center and in charge of the Nurse Practitioner Fellowship Program, New Provider onboarding and orientation, and provides family practice services for all ages.

Heather is originally from Virginia Beach, VA. She then traveled the world as a military spouse and saw the global impacts of different types of healthcare systems and the lack of access to care.

As a WA rural healthcare provider in Lewis, Pacific and Thurston counties, Heather sees the difficulty her patients have in accessing specialty care due to distance and cost.  Throughout her career in the medical field, she has worked to precept new employees and successfully integrate team philosophies into practice to improve overall outcomes. Heather is a member of AANP, ARNPs United of Washington, NW-Cape, and the American College of Lifestyle Medicine.

Feb 1, 2022

Do you remember what the food was like in your school cafeteria? If was anything like mine, you were willing to do whatever was needed to eat something else or somewhere else. Angela Stoltzenburg, Director of Community Health at Lincoln Memorial Hospital, has done something about that. Through a collaborative effort, school cafeterias now create healthy meals from scratch! Not only are students learning about healthy eating habits, but they also see what healthy eating looks like.

We talk to the kids about ‘go’ food and how they need to eat more ‘gos’ than ‘slows’ and more ‘slows’ than ‘whoas.’

~Angela Stoltzenburg

Angela Stoltzenburg has been serving as the Director of Community Health at Lincoln Memorial Hospital (LMH) since 2012 in Lincoln, Illinois. Lincoln is located in central Illinois. LMH serves Logan County and eastern Mason County with a total population of approximately 32,000. In her current role, she oversees a variety of strategies to improve health outside the walls of the critical access hospital.

Stoltzenburg earned a Bachelors in Health Administration and a Master’s of Business Administration from Eastern Illinois University. Prior to her work at LMH she was the CEO of Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois serving six rural Illinois counties, including Logan, to address the needs of low-income and seniors. She uses her experience of the social determinants of health to guide the work of LMH as they work to improve lives and build stronger communities through better health.

Jan 25, 2022

When you think about rural healthcare, you may not think about Scotland, but Scotland has some very rural areas that deal with similar issues we deal with in rural America. Hear about what they are doing in rural Scotland to deliver health and wellbeing to their residents, by listening to our conversation with Dr. Emma Watson, 2021-22 U.K. Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy and Practice Deputy Medical Director at NHS Highland.

“NHS Highland delivers integrated health and social care, so it is not just about illness.”

~Dr. Emma Watson

Dr. Emma Watson MSc, FRCPath, FRCPEd is a 2020-21 UK Harkness Fellow in Healthcare Policy and Practice. A Consultant Medical Microbiologist by background and a senior clinical systems leader in Scotland, she is an expert in quality improvement and in medical education and workforce planning.

Emma is Deputy Medical Director in NHS Highland which is, geographically, one of the largest and most sparsely populated combined health and social care systems in the UK. She is also a senior medical adviser in the Scottish Government. In both roles, her focus is on developing innovative approaches to ensuring equitable access to high-quality health care services with a sustainable healthcare workforce, particularly in remote and rural areas.

Emma has led a number of major change programs including the development of Scotland’s first graduate entry medical school. Emma previously held a post in the Scottish Government as Clinical Lead for the Scottish Patient Safety Program during which time she ensured quality improvement methodology translated from the development of health policy and strategy through to implementation across the entirety of the Scottish healthcare system.  Scotland was the first country in the world to implement a patient safety program on a whole system basis at the national level. As Director of Medical Education in NHS Highland, she focused on the delivery of high-quality medical education as a tool to increase recruitment and attract young doctors to the region as well as ensuring there is now an established programme to encourage young people from the area to go to medical school. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she led the clinical response in her region and ensured there was a whole system approach to manage the impact of the virus.

Jan 18, 2022

Ted Rogalski considers himself to be in the relationship business. Maximizing outcomes and organizational effectiveness in rural communities with limited resources require a culture of connection, a culture that fosters strong relationships. Hear Ted’s thoughts on this and much more during our conversation with Ted Rogalski, Administrator of Genesis Medical Center in Aledo, IL.

“We must create a culture and work environment that is a draw for caregivers by developing relationships outside the organization.”

~Ted Rogalski

Edward J. (Ted) Rogalski is the Administrator for Genesis Medical Center, Aledo, a 22-bed critical access hospital located in Aledo, Illinois. Rogalski completed his Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration at St. Ambrose University and received his Master's degree in Health Care Administration from the University of Iowa. He is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.

During his 24 years with Genesis Health System, Rogalski has held a number of leadership positions. Over the past ten years, he has directed operations in Aledo, IL where he joined the organization under a management agreement with Mercer County Hospital (now Genesis Medical Center, Aledo). During his tenure, Rogalski led a $1.6 million dollar turn-around effort and successfully guided the organization through affiliation and ultimately acquisition.

On February 1, 2013, Mercer County Hospital, Medical Associates Clinic (a six provider RHC) and Mercer County Nursing Home (92 bed LTC) joined Genesis Health System. The Hospital immediately embarked on an extensive $12 million renovation plan. Prior to joining Genesis, Rogalski worked for Mercy Hospital, Iowa City, IA; Abbott Northwestern Hospital, Minneapolis, MN; and started his healthcare career at St. Luke’s Hospital, Davenport, IA.

Rogalski currently serves as Chair-Elect for the Illinois Hospital Association Board of Trustees and Treasurer for the Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network. He has also served as the Chair for the Small and Rural Hospital Committee of the Illinois Hospital Association and has been an active community volunteer and serves or has served on the boards of the American Hospital Association - Regional Policy Board, Vera French Mental Health Center, St. Ambrose University PA Program, Mercer County Better Together, Mercer County YMCA, St. Paul the Apostle School, Assumption High School Century Club, and Friendship Manor. Rogalski and his wife, Lisa, have five adult married children and one grandson.

Jan 11, 2022

Burnett Medical Center set some pretty high goals for wellness visits, complete physicals, annual wellness visits, and welcome-to-Medicare visits. They also initiated a tier management program to follow up with patients to make sure they are doing well. We’re talking about this and more with Tamra White, Burnett Medical Center’s Medical Practice Administrator and Compliance Officer.

“As much as we like to think we’re pretty good at what we do, there’s always room for improvement.”

~Tamra White

Tamra White joined Burnett Medical Center in 2001. Burnett Medical Center is a 17-bed Critical Access Hospital, Rural Health Clinic, and 50-bed nursing home in Tamra’s hometown of Grantsburg, Wisconsin. Throughout that time, Tamra has held various positions including medical transcriptionist, medical staff coordinator, HIM Director, and Compliance Officer. During those years she assisted with two EMR implementations, revenue cycle improvement, and planning for a $15 million building project.

Since 2017 Tamra has served as the Medical Practice Administrator and Compliance Officer in addition to implementing an Emergency Preparedness program. In December 2018 Tamra was asked to co-lead the organization when the hospital’s CEO had an unexpected three-month medical leave.
Tamra is currently finishing her bachelor’s degree in healthcare management through Regent University. After that, she plans to obtain a master’s degree in healthcare administration. Tamra also holds a degree in health information management from Rasmussen College.

Tamra’s mission is to serve her community, friends, and family in humility and love while ensuring they have close-to-home access to high-quality healthcare. Her professional interests involve strategic planning, medical staff relations, compliance, and regulatory issues, and goal cycles and action plans. Tamra’s personal interests include spending time with her husband and two daughters, reading, church activities, and Bible study small groups.

Jan 4, 2022

Rural Medical Centers has clinics located in mountains where there is no internet or cell service, and in the middle of a tomato field. As you might imagine, they have a few challenges providing healthcare services. I invite you to listen to a very interesting conversation with Jessica Zimmerman and Alexis Andino who are both with Rural Medical Centers in East Tennessee.

“We have a clinic in the mountains where there is no cell or internet service, so the way we access and treat people there is different.”

~Jessica Zimmerman

Jessica Zimmerman is a native of Lima, OH, and is married to Javier. They have one son, Ethan. Jessica is currently transitioning from her role as Corporate Compliance Manager with Rural Medical Services, Inc. to a position working with Auxiliary Services offered through her organization which is a FQHC located in East Tennessee. Jessica is bilingual and uses that ability to not only help her fulfill duties at work but also as a volunteer English teacher for adults one night a week.

Alexis Andino is originally from Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Central America. He is married to Edith, and they have 3 married young adult children, who give them the joy of enjoying 6 grandchildren with one more on the way. Alexis is a bilingual Agricultural Engineer, with a diploma in Church-based community Facilitation, who worked for several years as a church-based community project facilitator for Christian Service Organizations in Honduras, Central America.

Alexis works as a Community Outreach and Transportation worker for Rural Medical Services, Inc.

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