Grant Provides Dental Equipment Upgrade at Denny Murphy Clinic

Thank you so much to the Arcora Foundation for a grant helping us to purchase some much needed dental equipment! 

Denny Murphy Clinic’s existing dental equipment, some of which has been in service for 20+ years, has been well-maintained to maximize the full life of each piece. However, the equipment is coming to its end of life. Upgrading and modernizing the clinic’s equipment will ensure continuity in access to integrated medical and dental services for the underserved, high-risk patients in Spokane’s downtown core. Moreover, new technologies will greatly improve workflow efficiency.

New cutting-edge equipment will provide for earlier detection of tooth decay and significantly improved patient experience. It will enhance teamwork and make dental care easier for patients, dentists, and hygienists. Accordingly, it also will make it easier to recruit and retain dental staff. Above all, new technologies will greatly improve staff workflow efficiency, meaning more productive patient visits and increased oral health for patients.

Friendly Faces in New Spaces

During COVID-19, a great number of CHAS Health staff found both their workplaces and roles transformed.  With nonessential services suspended and many office visits converted to telephone or virtual visits, the need to check in patients at the front desk diminished and had the potential to compromise patient and staff safety if continued.  Toni Hites from the CHAS Latah Community Health clinic in Moscow, Idaho found herself still greeting patients, but instead of operating from the comfort of the clinic’s front office, she was now something like an extremely friendly healthcare bouncer–posted outside the clinic front door, donned nose to knees in protective gear.

“I have been enjoying my new role as a greeter, because I get to meet all of the dental people. It has been great getting to know my co-workers who I would not usually get to work with this closely. I have also gotten to know my pharmacy co-workers as well.  We have a great team here at Latah CHAS, and they have made this fun even in these difficult times.  I have also gotten to hear from the patients how they appreciate all we do for them, like running in to get their prescriptions for them.”

If you are a CHAS Health patient needing pharmacy services, give as a call at (509) 444-8200 in Washington or (208) 838-8300 in Idaho.

This blog post is part of a special CHAS Health Foundation series for #GivingTuesdayNow. #GivingTuesdayNow is a global day of giving and unity that will take place on May 5, 2020 as an emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19.  #GivingTuesdayNow emphasizes opportunities to give back to communities and causes in safe ways that allow for social connection and kindness even while practicing physical distancing. #GivingTuesdayNow is a global day of giving that focuses on the collective power that individuals, communities and organizations use to celebrate generosity and philanthropy worldwide.

This mission of the CHAS Health Foundation is to create health equity by strategically investing in patients, partners, and communities. The CHAS Health Foundation supports CHAS Health, a non-profit community health center serving over 97,000 patients annually regardless of their insurance status or ability to pay. You can donate to the CHAS Health Foundation at: https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/CHAS

Working the Tent during COVID-19

During the COVID-19 Crisis, many of our employees were moved from working inside their regular clinic location, to helping in our screening tents outside of our primary care clinics.  Here are some comments about tent work from one of our amazing Nurse Practitioners, Todd:

“The patients and families I interacted with [in the tent] were ALL amazing, supportive and understanding of the processes we went through to keep them and their family members safe.  In those moments there was a real sense of community and we are all working together.” 

Todd noted that CHAS support staff were all great; not just the Medical Assistants and other staff screening at the door and running for supplies, but even the facilities employee who got the heat on to make employees more comfortable and who broke down the tent at the end of the day.  

“I feel very fortunate to work for an organization that supports its employees, families and community in a time like this.”

This blog post is part of a special CHAS Health Foundation series for #GivingTuesdayNow. #GivingTuesdayNow is a global day of giving and unity that will take place on May 5, 2020 as an emergency response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19.  #GivingTuesdayNow emphasizes opportunities to give back to communities and causes in safe ways that allow for social connection and kindness even while practicing physical distancing. #GivingTuesdayNow is a global day of giving that focuses on the collective power that individuals, communities and organizations use to celebrate generosity and philanthropy worldwide.

This mission of the CHAS Health Foundation is to create health equity by strategically investing in patients, partners, and communities. The CHAS Health Foundation supports CHAS Health, a non-profit community health center serving over 97,000 patients annually regardless of their insurance status or ability to pay. You can donate to the CHAS Health Foundation at: https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/CHAS

Resources for Parents At Home During COVID-19

With area schools closing for the next six weeks and more at home time happening for everyone, we wanted to provide some resources for parents and folks who are self-quarantined alike. There are many free resources available right now to learn and also free lunches available to any child 18 years or younger.


A couple of tips before we get into the resources:


Remain calm and reassuring.

Children will react to and follow your verbal and nonverbal reactions.

What you say and do about COVID-19, current prevention efforts, and related events can either increase or decrease your children’s anxiety.

Let your children talk about their feelings and help reframe their concerns into the appropriate perspective.

Make yourself available.

Children may need extra attention from you and may want to talk about their concerns, fears, and questions.

It is important that they know they have someone who will listen to them; make time for them.

Tell them you love them and give them plenty of affection.


Resources

First of all, be sure to check in with your school and school district. They may have excellent resources for what your child is currently learning in class. Your student’s teacher may have plans already prepared to help you navigate this time, be sure to be in contact if possible.

Below are some resources we’ve found that may help you to navigate learning and fun:

Comcast Offers Two Months Free Internet

If you don’t currently have access to internet, Comcast is offering two free months of internet service. https://www.internetessentials.com/covid19#thingstoknow&all_DoIliveinaComcastarea

Storyline Online

Storyline Online, streams videos featuring celebrated actors reading children’s books alongside creatively produced illustrations. Readers include Viola Davis, Chris Pine, Lily Tomlin, Kevin Costner, Annette Bening, James Earl Jones, Betty White and dozens more.

https://www.storylineonline.net/?fbclid=IwAR3xPu5j5B6FheORc5rgO6qts_X43x9-pnYEPD55sULYYUDwqt3_YvW_zkw

Kennedy Center Education Artist-in-Residence at Home

Mo Willems invites YOU into his studio every day for his LUNCH DOODLE. Learners worldwide can draw, doodle and explore new ways of writing by visiting Mo’s studio virtually once a day for the next few weeks. Grab some paper and pencils, pens, or crayons and join Mo to explore ways of writing and making together.  https://www.kennedy-center.org/education/mo-willems/

Explore the National Parks virtually thanks to Google

We went there so you can too. Follow rangers on a journey to places most people never go. Experience the sights, sounds, and adventures of Kenai Fjords, Hawai’i Volcanoes, Carlsbad Caverns, Bryce Canyon, and Dry Tortugas in stunning 360° video. https://techcrunch.com/2016/08/25/google-now-lets-you-explore-u-s-national-parks-via-360-degree-virtual-tours/

Other fun resources:

  • The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden are doing live safaris via Facebook Live at 12pm they highlight one of their amazing animals and include an activity you can do from home. (this is also available afterward on YouTube):
https://www.facebook.com/cincinnatizoo/
  • This iconic museum located in the heart of London allows virtual visitors to tour the Great Court and discover the ancient Rosetta Stone and Egyptian mummies. https://britishmuseum.withgoogle.com/
  • KiwiCo is a STEM kit delivered to your door. However, they just launched a really cool free online resource page to learn at home. Check it out: https://www.kiwico.com/blog/

Other Ideas

Connect with family—right now is a great time to connect with family members near and far.

  • Call/Skype/FaceTime/Zoom with family members
  • Look at photo albums and discuss family heritage
  • Create a family tree
  • Write letters to/create cards for relatives (Perhaps an overdue thank you note for that really nifty gift you received?)

With the cancellation of playdates, birthday parties, and other activities, your calendar is likely wide open. Which allows for some fun family activities to take place, here are some suggestions for fun things you can do with your family:

  • Play card and board games
  • Make art or do crafts together
  • Cook and bake together—talk about math as you prepare the recipe
  • Build forts, design a marble run, or other fun STEM project
  • Sort through bookshelves, revisit favorite titles and make a pile to donate
  • Change family picture frames and revisit memories as you change photos
  • Make a photo book together
  • Make up a play
  • Sing, play recorder or other instruments
  • Have a dance party, do fitness activities together, and play in the yard as a family

Read Trusted Sources:

Seek accurate information and limit exposure to social media and news reports that provide no new information or inaccurate information. Here are some reliable sources of information:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

https://srhd.org/news/2020/learn-more-about-coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19


Free Lunches in the Inland Northwest During COVID-19

A number of school districts in our area will be distributing free lunches throughout this time. Check out the list below for resources in your area (please visit each website to confirm availability):


Spokane Public Schools:

Spokane schools will begin distributing grab-and-go breakfast and lunch meals every weekday at schools beginning Thursday, March 19 from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. These meals are offered to any child 18 years or younger. To see where these meals are being handed out, click here.

Central Valley School District:

The Central Valley School District has 11 designated locations for meal pickup, beginning Tuesday, March 17. These meals are open to any student – even those not registered in the CVSD. However, parents and/or guardians must bring the children with them during pickup to receive those meals. To see a full list of those pickup locations, click here.

East Valley School District:

The East Valley School District is still determining how it will support students and their families during the closure. At this time, no meal pickup plans have been put into place. To read a letter from Superintendent Kelly Shea discussing the district’s plans, click here.

West Valley School District:

West Valley schools will provide breakfast and lunch meals to students in the district beginning Tuesday, March 17. All of the district’s elementary schools, Centennial Middle School, and West Valley High School will distribute meals between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. More information is available here.

Mead School District:

Meal service for Mead schools will begin Monday, March 23. Meals will be delivered to various hubs throughout the school district, but those locations have not yet been determined. You can read more information on the district’s response here.

Deer Park School District:

Breakfast and lunch grab-and-go meals will be offered to students in the Deer Park School District beginning Thursday, March 19. Distribution will take place between 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. at Deer Park Elementary, Deer Park Middle, and Deer Park Home Link (beginning Monday, March 23). Students needing meals are asked to fill out a form to the district is prepared with enough meals ahead of time. A link to that sign-up sheet and more information is available here.

Cheney School District:

Breakfast and lunch meals will be distributed beginning Wednesday, March 18 between 9 – 10:30 a.m. No specific pickup location or times have been determined yet. You can read more from the district here.

Medical Lake School District:

Meal pickup plans have not been finalized by the district. The Medical Lake School District will have an update by Thursday, March 19, with how it’ll proceed with services like meal distribution. You can read the latest from Superintendent Timothy Ames here.

Pullman School District:

Each school in the Pullman School district will be open for meal pickup beginning Wednesday, March 18, between 7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. The district will also send vans out into the community to deliver meals to designated locations for those who cannot get to the schools. The breakfast and lunch meals will be grab-and-go style and free to any student. Families are free to pick those meals up at any school in the district. To see more information on those distribution locations and times, click here.

Moses Lake School District:

The district said food service plans are in progress to have a neighborhood meal program for breakfast and lunch, but no further specifics have been shared. Read more here.

Coeur d’Alene School District:

Breakfast and lunch meal pickup will begin Wednesday, March 18, at several different schools throughout the district between 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. You can find those specific locations here.

Moscow School District:

Students in the Moscow School District are on spring break from March 16 – 20. However, the schools will be closed through April 6. In a letter to district families, Superintendent Gregory Bailey says the district is working to make lunch available to students once spring break is over. More information is expected closer to the end of spring break. You can read Bailey’s letter here.

Additionally, the Mad Greek restaurant is offering free lunches for kids for the next three weeks. Those lunch meals include a slice of pizza or a cup of soup. Meal pickup is available from 2 – 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday. More information is available here.

Lewiston School District:

Meal pickup will be available from March 16 – 20 at Jenifer Jr. High and Sacajawea Jr. High for any Lewiston School District students and members of their household 18 years and younger from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. Family members older than 18 will be able to purchase meals from the schools. More information is available here.

5 Things You Can Do To Prepare for Bloomsday 2020!

Bloomsday 2020 is quickly approaching and on May 3rd 2020, nearly 50,000 people will take the streets of Spokane to run, jog, or walk their way through 7.5 miles.

The question though, what can I be doing now to get prepared for Bloomsday? Just like any race, training for Bloomsday takes dedication and hard work, we put together a list of 5 things you can do to get prepped for the big race.

Bloomsday
  • Get started on a running or walking program

There are endless options out there to improve your endurance when preparing for a long-distance run or walk, so find one that best caters to your needs and goals. Interval training is a great way to get your heart rate up and give your body the boost it needs to keep running during steady periods of time. If you plan on walking, it’s a good idea to get into a weekly or even daily walking routine to prepare your muscles and joints for the 7.5-mile trek through Spokane streets—it’s also a great excuse to do some sightseeing as the weather begins to warm up!

  • Join a team or get a partner

Exercising with other people can often be a lot more fun than just going by yourself. When we have a reliable teammate or partner to push us, we tend to reach past our own expectations and reach our goals efficiently. Find someone who is going to give you that push you need and you may just build a lifelong love for exercise.

  • Increase your water intake

It is recommended that the average person drinks between 5-8 eight-ounce glasses of water a day. When preparing for the big race, it’s important to consistently drink water throughout the day and get in the habit of drinking water BEFORE you are even thirsty. Though Bloomsday doesn’t take place during a hot month, 7.5 miles often takes a lot of sweat—refuel and recharge.

  • Visit your physician

Though Bloomsday participants run and walk at all levels, it’s a good idea to visit your health care provider before starting a training program to make sure your health is not at risk. They can also let you know if your finish time goal is reasonable and give you tips for proper training.

  • Start stretching regularly

It is always good to stretch before and after doing any strenuous physical activity, but daily stretching is great at increasing flexibility to prevent future injury. If you don’t have much experience with stretching, taking up a Yoga class or even finding a TV program that teaches stretching, Yoga or Pilates at home could be beneficial to your Bloomsday experience.

Most importantly, have fun! Bloomsday 2020 is a great way to connect with family, friends, and community – all while enjoying some exercise. We hope to see you out there this year. For more information on Bloomsday 2020, check out https://www.bloomsdayrun.org/ .

Top 5 Things You Need to Know About Coronavirus | COVID-19

CHAS Health is dedicated to the health and wellness of the communities we serve. Recent global events have raised questions about the coronavirus (COVID-19) and how to stay healthy. Below are answers to frequently asked questions. If you still have concerns for your health related to the coronavirus, please call us for more information at 509.444.8200 or 208.848.8300.

1. What is coronavirus aka COVID-19?

COVID-19 is the official name of the disease that is causing this 2019 coronavirus outbreak, first discovered in Wuhan China. The virus likely originated in animals and spread to humans. There are many types of human coronaviruses, including some that cause mild, cold-like illnesses. Some coronaviruses can cause illnesses in certain types of animals, such as cattle, camels and bats. This was the case with SARS and MERS. In rare cases, animal coronavirus cases can spread to humans.

2. How is the virus spread?

The way this virus is spread is not yet fully understood. However, based on other coronaviruses, it may spread between people by coughing and sneezing into the air, close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands, touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes before washing your hands, and rarely through stool contamination with the virus present.

3. What are the symptoms of COVID-19 infection?

Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Other symptoms can include runny nose, headache, and sore throat, and rarely digestive problems such as diarrhea or stomachache.

4. How can I protect myself from getting the virus?

The most important thing you should do is clean your hands frequently, especially before touching your face or eating. When you wash your hands, use soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available. Avoid close contact with people who are sick, and cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw tissue away and wash your hands. Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces. Stay home and away from others if you are feeling ill.

5. I think I’m experiencing symptoms of coronavirus, what do I do?

If you have traveled from a high-risk area (currently identified by the CDC as China, Japan, South Korea, Italy and Iran) or you have symptoms of fever, cough, or shortness of breath and feel you may have been exposed to this virus:

• Do not go to Urgent Care or the Emergency Room

• Call you doctor if you’re experiencing symptoms

• Washington CHAS Health Patients: 509.444.8200

• Idaho CHAS Health Patients: 208.848.8300


Learn more FAQs about coronavirus (COVID-19) at https://chas.org/health-alerts

NOW OPEN! John R. Rogers High School Clinic

Healthcare can be complex, especially in today’s busy world. Many provider hours are limited to the school day, and offices may be located far from the school. That means students have to take time away from school and possibly find a ride, making it difficult to get the care they need while maintaining academics.

School-based health centers (SBHC) tackle that problem directly by adding an on campus clinic, making getting the care you need as simple as walking to the other side of the building.

Why school-based health centers?

Essentially, school-based health centers is an extension of your neighborhood health clinic in the school.

Healthy students are better learners. When students don’t feel well, it’s much harder to learn and pay attention in class. Not to mention days where students may be too ill to come to class at all, making it harder to catch up on materials.

School-based health centers aim to tackle this by offering an easy–to-access clinic where students don’t have to take time off to be seen by a provider.


According to data from the School-Based Health Alliance, school-based health centers:

  • Help students do better in school
  • Increase high school graduation rates
  • Decrease school discipline cases

How is a SBHC different from the school nurse’s office?

A SBHC is a fully-licensed primary care facility, providing a range of physical and mental health services, with limited dental services.  SBHC’s and school nurses work closely together, with school nurses able to refer students to the SBHC to resolve student health problems.

What services will CHAS Health at John R. Rogers -based health centeroffer?

This new clinic will be for students and school staff only, and will provide the following services:

• Primary medical care

• Answers to your health questions and concerns

• Treatment of common injuries and illnesses (allergies, rashes, sore throat, etc.)

• Counseling (help with emotional and social issues)

• Sports physicals

• Vaccinations, including flu shots

• Reproductive health services

• and much more

CHAS Health at John R. Rogers High School be staffed by Jeff Hayward, Family Practice Physician Assistant; Kristie Stolgitis, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner; Michelle Timmerman, Behavioral Health Proivder; Kelsey Kienbaum, Medical Assistant.  Johnnie Beans serves as the School Outreach Specialist, and is actively engaged in connecting with the students and staff.


Hours of operation will be Monday – Friday 7:30 am to 4:00 pm with both scheduled appointments and same day walk-in appointments available. 


School-based health centers often are operated as a partnership between the school and a community health organization, such as a community health center, hospital, or local health department. The specific services provided by school-based health centers vary based on community needs and resources as determined through collaborations between the community, the school district and the health care providers.

CHAS Health at John R. Rogers High School is made possible thanks to funding from Kaiser Permanente, in partnership with Spokane Public Schools.

For a more in-depth look at studies on school-based health centers:  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3770486/

Southgate Clinic Now Open!

CHAS Health has opened new clinic on Spokane’s upper South Hill to provide comprehensive healthcare services for patients of all ages. The new CHAS Health Southgate Clinic, located at 5620 S. Regal St., Suite 11, offers medical, behavioral health, and pharmacy services under one roof, with a team experienced in family medicine, pediatrics, and women’s healthcare.

 

Pediatric services include acute care, well child exams, immunizations, and sports physicals for children under 18. Women’s health includes annual gynecological exams, pap smears, family planning, birth control, and menopause management. Our midwives and providers also offer complete pregnancy care. Pharmacists work side by side with the providers to assist with medication management. The collaborative approach provides coordinated care for our patients.

 

Patients can schedule an appointment by calling 509.444.8200.