In the News
NMC ending addiction recovery program, Howard Center
expanding locally
St. Albans Messenger

Northwestern Medical Center (NMC) is shuttering its addiction recovery program, Northwestern Partners in Hope and Recovery (NPHR), at the end of July.

“This is part of our sustainability plan, and it’s another difficult part of that plan,” said Jonathan Billings, NMC’s vice president of community relations.

The program was operating at a loss. Closing it “represents a half million in financial relief,” said Billings.

The decision is “part of NMC refocusing on being a small community hospital,” he added.

Howard Center to Expand its Substance Use and Recovery Services
Vermont Business Magazine

Howard Center will expand its substance use and recovery services in northwestern Vermont by offering a new medication-assisted treatment (MAT) Spoke serving Franklin and Grand Isle counties at 172 Fairfield Street in St Albans. Partners in Hope and Recovery at Northwestern Medical Center (NMC), a long-time partner and provider, is transitioning from offering medication assisted-treatment in the county.

Jonathan Billings, Vice President of Community Relations at Northwestern Medical Center says, “we have worked closely in partnership with Howard Center for many years, and we are confident in their ability to provide exceptional care and treatment for the community. Both of our organizations are committed to ensuring a smooth transition for patients.”

Southwestern Vermont Health Care Launches Virtual Urgent Care
Vermont Business Magazine

Southwestern Vermont Health Care has launched a virtual urgent care platform called CAREqd to improve access to medical care.

In medical terminology, "qd" is shorthand for "every day." Through CAREqd the community can receive urgent care at any time of day, every day. CAREqd can be accessed through a live, secure video connection on its website or a mobile app for smartphones.

"Our mission of exceptional care drives us to provide our community with increased access and convenience," said Dr. Trey Dobson, the medical center’s chief medical officer. "The CAREqd virtual urgent care platform is a way to extend the use of technology to make high-quality care even easier for patients."

The CAREqd platform provides patients access to urgent care around the clock every day of the year, including weekends and holidays. Patients can access urgent care from anywhere by phone or from an internet-enabled device, whether they are at home, at work or traveling. The mobile app makes it quick and easy to access a provider from a smartphone or tablet.
Kindness Cards at NMC: A Deliberate Act
Saint Albans Messenger

While many staggered as the COVID-19 pandemic spread worldwide, one young girl found a way to display community support through kind words and colorful deeds.

With the closing of local schools in March, Heather Blackburn of St. Albans Town, prompted her three children to hand-write letters to help keep them occupied.

“The kids usually write letters during the summer, to their cousins or a friend,” she says. “This time Roxy (age seven) decided to write to strangers.”

Maxine Linehan to Debut Original Song for SVHC Charity Event
Vermont Business Magazine

The Southwestern Vermont Health Care (SVHC) Foundation has announced that world-renowned vocalist Maxine Linehan will debut an original song, entitled “Stronger Together,” by the singer and her husband, songwriter, and producer Andrew Koss, at the Spirit of the Summer Gala, a virtual charity event, scheduled for 6 p.m. Friday, July 17. The song is inspired by Southwestern Vermont Health Care’s clinical teams and all responders to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This is a tremendous gift from these two exceptionally talented musicians,” said Leslie Keefe, vice president for Corporate Development at SVHC. “So much about this year’s event is different than those in years past. Especially, with this addition to the program, we anticipate that this event will be as engaging as ever.”

After Covid-19 Outbreaks, Vermont's Elder Care Facilities Seek a New Normal
VT Digger

Dick Dodge used to go nearly every day to Berlin Health & Rehab to tuck his wife into bed.

At 3 p.m., the 77-year-old Worcester resident would arrive at the nursing home, where his wife Irene, who suffers from dementia, has lived for the past four and a half years. The couple ate dinner together in the cafeteria. Afterwards, Dick would help Irene get ready for bed, and slip out of the room as she was drifting off to sleep around 8 p.m.

That routine ended on March 12, when Covid arrived in Vermont, and the facility shut its doors to visitors. By March 17, when Gov. Phil Scott's executive order went into effect, all of the state’s 177 assisted living facilities, nursing homes and residential care facilities were officially closed.

PMC Auxiliary Donates $50,000 to Porter
The Sun

The Porter Medical Center Auxiliary voted to donate $50,000 to the UVMHN Porter Medical Center as an unrestricted contribution to assist Porter during this unprecedented and challenging time, as the organization continues to transition to reestablishing elective services and procedures under strict protocols.

“We are deeply grateful to our Porter Auxiliary for this significant donation and their willingness to allow us to use it where most needed as we work to reopen services and address the financial challenges that were directly related to the COVID-19 pandemic”, said Porter Interim President/COO Tom Thompson.

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