December 1, 2016

Cook Hospital & Care Center is the new assumed name for Cook Hospital

The Cook-Orr Healthcare District board, at their regular meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 22, at 6 p.m. in the hospital board room, were informed that the hospital has a new name. Administrator Teresa Debevec told the board that the new assumed name is Cook Hospital & Care Center and that it has been registered with the Secretary of State.
Debevec reported that the MQSA Mammography inspection was done on Nov. 14 and no deficiencies were noted.
Debevec also reported that the hospital has received the SHIP grant for the Telemedicine software for cardiology and has submitted a pre-application for the Capital Improvement Grant for a little over $100,000 for a new chemistry analyzer in the laboratory. The hospital will know in December if it is in the second round.
Debevec noted that the hospital has received the IRRRB grant for the construction.
Election results were canvassed, with Shirley Sanborn winning in Crane Lake Township, Tifany Briggs in Angora, Eric Pederson in Cook, Barbara Johnson in Orr, Margie Hyppa in Owens, Kathy Weiand in Portage, and Jolene Blake in Willow Valley.
For the month of October the hospital had operating revenues of $1,071,723 against a budget of $997,217 for a loss of $33,041 compared to a budgeted loss of $100,521. Year-to-date revenue was $10,784,986 against a budget of $10,618,332 for a year-to-date loss of $274,787 against a budgeted loss of $315,777. With non-operating income added in, the hospital had a profit of $80,614 against a budgeted profit of $5,402. The year-to-date profit was $840,757 against a budget of $743,468.
The board approved the hospital's budget for 2017. It called for gross revenues of $18,784,962 bringing a net profit of $397,978.

Virgie Hegg Hospice Lights of Love tree-lighting is this Friday

This Friday will be a great time to get outdoors and enjoy this fantastic weather. It is also the day that the lighting of the Virgie Hegg Hospice Lights of Love tree will take place by the Cook Library. The lighting ceremony will take place at 5 p.m. There will be refreshments in the library and time to greet your neighbors and friends with a Merry Christmas.
Youngsters will want to be there as Santa Claus is rumored to be making a stop at the Comet Theater following the lighting of the Lights of Love.
There will also be a lot of caroling going on. You will really get into the Christmas Spirit.
The Virgie Hegg Hospice Partners Inc. do a fantastic job. They truly deserve your support.

Orr Snow City Christmas Festival is Saturday, Santa Claus will be there

If you have never been to an Orr Snow City Christmas Festival, you don't know what you are missing. This annual event is taking place this Saturday, starting with a pancake breakfast from 7 to 10 a.m. in the American Legion building. It will be followed by a craft fair and you won't believe the items for sale. Lunch will be served in the Legion from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
The big event that makes this Festival so special is the parade that goes behind the businesses. Entrants will line up at Wally's Auto, with the parade starting at 1 p.m. Bring your cameras for this.
There is also a Medallion Hunt going on. It started on Monday with clues posted at the Post Office and on the Orr Area Chamber of Commerce Facebook page.
A special part of the whole event is the Lights of Love lighting ceremony at 5:30 p.m. at Carefree Living. Refresh-ments will be served.
Yes, that big, roly-poly man in red with his white beard and hair, along with his wife, Mrs. Claus, will be there following the parade so the youngsters can come and tell him what they want for Christmas.
Merry Christmas and see you in Orr.

Board approves funding for Probation Officer for Mental Health Court

The St. Louis County Board has approved funding for Arrowhead Regional Corrections (ARC) to support a full-time probation officer dedicated to working with participants in the Mental Health Court program. The board authorized spending $150,000 for a two-year pilot program.
St. Louis County Mental Health Court serves offenders who have been diagnosed with serious and persistent mental illness and who have volunteered to participate in the program. It's designed to reduce recidivism and offer lower cost alternatives to incarceration and hospitalization for the offender, while promoting self-sufficiency and assisting with mental health, chemical use problems and basic living needs.
The specialty court has operated in Duluth since 2010, and during that time, an ARC probation officer has juggled working with the Mental Health Court participants along with other clients on probation. By dedicating a probation officer solely for the program, partic-ipants will be more closely monitored and assessed, leading to better success, such as fewer days in jail, new arrests, violations of probation, emergency room admissions, mental health hospitali-zations and detox admissions. Other benefits are expected to include securing safety housing, increasing compliance with psychotropic medication plan, reducing the use of alcohol and mood altering substances not prescribed by a physician, and increasing compliance with mental health and/or chemical dependency treatment directives.
Currently, the Mental Health Court serves an average of 55-60 participants each year. A full-time probation officer dedicated to MHC should increase the number of participants served by at least 20 percent.
Mental Health Court is a partnership involving the Courts, Arrowhead Regional Corrections, the Public Defender, County Attorney, and other agencies that specialize in mental health and chemical dependency issues.
The County Board voted 5 to 2 in favor of funding the pilot program. Commissioners Rukavina and Dahlberg opposed it.


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