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January 15, 2003     Sioux County Index-Reporter
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January 15, 2003
 

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, w ..... ~ ~=, .~7 ~ .~ 7,: ...... : , ~ Page A~ Sioux County Index-Reporter TATEWIDE Wednesday, lanuary 1 #I In An independent, nationwide study has ranked Mercy Medical Center-Sioux City number one in the state of Iowa for heart and stroke care. The ranking also places Mercy in the top five percent of the nation's hospitals for both cardiac and stroke care. HealthGrades, a national health care ratings agency, today announced that its 2003 report also gave Mercy Medical Center five-star ratings for superior clinical care in the areas of coronary artery bypass surgery, inter- ventional cardiac procedures and stroke treatment. "Objective outcome information on hospital care could potentially be life-saving to a consumer," said Sarah Loughran, senior vice president for HealthGrades. "The outstanding ratings for Mercy Medical Center-Sioux City certainly speak for themselves and we congratulate them on such an achievement." Mercy President and CEO Peter Makowski and the 2003 HealthGrades report confirms that Siouxland residents can receive some of the best car- diac and stroke care in the nation at Mercy. "Providing care of the highest quality is our top priority,: said Makowski. "For that reason, we certainly welcome HealthGrades' verifi- cation of world-class care and great clinical outcomes." In preparing its 2003 Hospital Ratings Report, HealthGrades analyzed full set'Ace cardiac programs at more than 1,000 hospitals across the U.S. Ratings are based on the performance of each hospital, with consideration given to complication rates and patient/case volumes. The agency analyzed Medicare Provider Analysis and Review (MEDPAR) data from 1999 to 2001, the most current three-year data set available. A five-star rating indicates superior care, a three-star rating reflects aver- age care and one-star rating denotes poor care. To receive a five-star rating, a hospital must have a score in the top 15 percent of all hospitals performing that procedure or caring for patients with that diagnosis and the difference between actual and predicted per- formance must be statistically significant. In announcing the 2003 ratings, officials at HealthGrades stressed the dramatic difference in patient outcomes between hospitals with five-star ratings and those with one-star ratings. For example, coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) mortality rates for one-star hospitals were 2.7 times higher than for five-star hospitals. At Mercy Heart Center, actual CABG in-hospital mortality averaged 0.86 percent, which is significantly less than the predicted in-hospital mortality rate of 3.73 percent. Similarly, Mercy's actual in-hospital mortality for interventional cardiac procedures averaged just 1.12 percent compared to predicted in-hospital mortality of 2.43 per- cent. Vilsack calls government on federal to meet obligations DES MOINES - Governor promised at 40% levels but Thomas J. Vilsack today urged Congress is currently only provid- leaders in Washington to begin ing less than 17% support. work immediately to spur econom- ItEALTHCARE: To effectively ic growth and fund essential ser- manage the rising cost of Medicaid vices, services, the l i-partisan National Speaking at the State Capitol, Governors Association join Vilsack outlined several priorities. Governor Vilsack in urging "The economy of Iowa and our Congress to enact the Medicaid nation needs an immediate jolt and state relief package. This would Congress and the President need to create a temporary increase in the take action immediately. Decisions federal Medicaid match. in Washington will have a dramatic Iowans should be treated fairly in impact on Iowa, and the values we regards to Medicare reimburse- share. I look forward to working ment. As Iowa makes progress on with our congressional delegation its pending legal action against the to create quality jobs, protect the, funding system, Vilsack urges lead- homeland, improve education and ers in Washington to provide urgent fund healthcare for seniors and per- relief to Iowa seniors. This should sons with disabilities, " Vilack stat- also include a meaningful prescrip- ed tion dt:ug benefit. Vilsack outlined a "Citizens' HOMELAND SECURITY: Checklist" to help track progress on Washington cannot forget their several crucial areas: partnership with states like Iowa in JOBS: Immediate attention must protecting our domestic interests. be paid to several key areas to Iowa is proud of its efforts to pro- strengthen our economy, tect its people from the ravages of Lawmakers should help the unem- terror, but any additional directives ployed by immediately extending must come with adequate Federal unemployment benefits for resources. For example, if small- 26 weeks to those workers who pox vaccinations are ordered, the exhaust or have exhausted their reg- appropriate funding to cover such ular state unemployment insurance inoculations should be appropriat- benefits and are unable to find jobs. - ed. With the worst revenue growth INFRASTRUCTURE: The in fifty years, states cannot absorb nation must make critical invest- costs on their own. ments in road, water, and air infra- ELECTION REFORM: The structure to get America working. "Help America Vote Act" passed by Specifically, road construction must Congress could cost the state $20 be fully funded by Congress. Iowa million over the next three years has a growing backlog of invest- because they refused to fully fund ment opportunities and would see it. Mandates of the Act call for benefit from any additional funds, voter education, ADA-compliant For example, with a national stim- voting machines and a new voter ulus of $4.25 billion in highway registration system. investment, Iowa could receive an HEATING ASSISTANCE: The additional $50 million. Not only Low Income Home Energy does this create thousands of good Assistance Program (LIHEAP) jobs, but when coupled with invest- should be funded so that no Iowa ments in air and water construction, family isforced to suffer this winter it ensures a strengthened network of with insufficient heat. The Bush commerce. Administration's plan calls for a EDUCATION: If Washington is reduction of $5.2 million in Iowa serious about improving America's assistance this fiscal year. The pro- classrooms, then "No Child Left grams assists thousands of needy Behind" should come with more Iowa families cover their energy than rhetoric. The program should bills. Many families continue to be fully funded with standards and struggle from high cost energy bills assessment tools that are flexible, over the last two years. Special Education funding was I I lll Illl I Upcoming Antique & Collectible Auction Saturday, Jan. 25, 2003 at 10:00 tLm. Location: Hull Community Building, 1135 Main St., Hull, IA Selling will be excellent and quality glassware, pottery, crockery and a fine variety of collectible items. LEE & ELEANOR FEENsTRA, OWNERS 712-439-1343 Sale arranged and conducted by: Krommendyk Auction Co. Auctioneers: Don Krommendyk Brad Krommendyk 712-439-1559 Ten free flowering trees from Arbor Day Foundation Ten free flowering trees will be birds." given to each person who joins The The trees will be shipped post- National Arbor Day Foundation paid at the right time for planting during January. between Feb. 1 and May 31 with The free trees are part of the non- enclosed planting instructions. The profit Foundation's Treesfor six to twelve inch trees are guaran- America campaign, teed to grow or they will be The ten trees are two Whitereplaced free of charge. Flowering Dogwoods, two members also receive a subscrip- Flowering Crabapples, two tion to the Foundation's bimonthly Goldenraintrees, two Washington publication, "Arbor Day", and"The Hawthorns, and two American Tree Book" with information about Redbuds. tree planting and care. "These compact trees were To become a member of the selected for planting in large or foundation and to receive the free small spaces," John Rosenow, the trees or for information contact Ten Foundation's president, said. "They Free Flowering Trees, National will give your home the beauty of Arbor Day Foundation, 100 Arbor lovely pink, white, and yellow Ave., Nebraska City, Nebraska flowersand also provide winter City, Neb. 68410. berries and nesting sites for song- Youth now Leadership Forum DES MOINES6 The Division of Persons with Disabilities, in partnership with the Department of Education/Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services and the Department for the Blind, is currently accepting applica- tions for the Iowa High School Youth Leadership Forum for Students with Disabilities. This successful forum, which takes place in Ames on the ISU campus from July 27th through August 1st, is a unique summer program designed to teach leadership and self-advocacy skills to high school students with disabilities. Each year, students attending the forum say that it has a tremendously positive impact upon their lives. Iowa High School juniors and seniors with any type of disability who are interested in preparing for post secondary education and employment are urged to apply. Applications are onl'me at HYPERLINK "http://www.state.ia.us/dhr/pd" www.state.ia.us/dhr/pd or contact the Division of Persons with Disabilities at 888/219-0471. To learn more about the forum, there will be two opportunities to view an ICN presentation on January 22, 2003. The Iowa Public Television's Iowa Distance Learning Database will sponsor the hour-long sessions at 9:00 am and 11:15 am on that date. To view additional information about the ICN sessions, please visit HYPERLINK "http://www3.ipW.org/iowa__data- base/transitions/" http://www3.iptv.org/iowa_database/transitions/. For more information ask your high school counselor, AEA representa- tive, or contact the Division of Persons with Disabilities at 888-219-0471 Air quality standards premature, says Farm Bureau Efforts to create air quality stan- within two miles of the IBP, Inc. dards for Iowa are rushed and pre- livestock processing plant in mature, saidlowa Farm Bureau Dakota City that demonstrated no President Craig Lang in written statistically significant health comments to the Iowa Department effects from hydrogen sulfide expo- of Natural Resources. sures. Standards for hydrogen sulfide *A December 2002 Academy of and ammonia in areas around live- Science report advised that "avail- stock confinemen units are to be able estimates of emission factors, implemented under state law by rates and concentrations are suffi- December 2004 if field studies indi- ciently uncertain and provide a poor cate a problem exists. The Iowa basis for regulating or managing air DNR, however, is proposing strict emissions from animal feeding standards before studies are corn- operations." pleted. The standards would impact "If this is not a politically driven not only agriculture, but business, issue, but one of medical concern, industry and municipalities, available science should be uti- "Despite the claim of completing lized to make this rule justifiable a field study, the DNR's study in the and credible," Lang said. summer of 2001 was unable to find In addition, the Iowa Farm Bureau the levels commonly known to has joined with eight other Iowa cause a verifiable adverse health farm groups questioning state pro- effect," Lang said. "Additionally, cedures being used to create air the data being compiled at the quality standards. The groups Clarion and Williams, Iowa sites maintain that the Iowa DNR does provide further evidence that air not have legal authority to create quality standards are unnecessary." rules without proper field studieson The Farm Bureau leader asked the the quality of air near confinement DNR to proceed cautiously and to livestock facilities gather and weigh scientific data, Last year, the Iowa Legislature adding that air quality rules should approved major legislation impos- not be used to discourage agricul- hag additional regulations on the tural production in Iowa. livestock industry. Part of the legis- Several studies in the United lation requires the state to create air States supporta cautionaryquality standards to protect human approach, he said. health, but only after field studies The studies and federal standards are conducted. The DNR is propos- also suggest that Iowa's proposed ing rules before field studies are standards are inappropriate. They completed. include: The coalition also expressed con- *ATSDR (Agency for Toxic cern that the air quality rules stray Substance Disease Registry) haz- significantly from a joint Iowa ardous substances standards report State University-Unive ity of Iowa that 30 parts per billion (ppb) and report. 300 ppb are the minimal risk levels University scientists recommend- for hydrogen sulfide and ammonia, ed that a violation occur after eight respectively. "The Iowa DNR is occurrences above set standards. proposing levels of 15 ppb and 150 The DNR is proposing a "cumula- ppb. five" standard for air quality that *An ATSDR-funded a health counts violations of standards from study around a 96,000-head swine all sources. This could put an oper- finishing operation in Missouri that ation in violation even though it found no adverse health effects may not have caused the air quality from ammonia, problem all the time. *Another ATSDR study of people See Our Auction Calendar at ) www.lyon-siouxpress.com We list all auctions advertised in the Lyon County Reporter, West Lyon Herald, Sioux County Index and those placed in the Northwest Iowa Peach through Lyon-Sioux Press. To place your auction with us call 1-800-621-0801 m ...... The President, Governors, and and Whereas, January is 'National area hospitals. "When Mayors in many local communities Volunteer Blood Donor Month.'need blood transfusions it are declaring January as Volunteer .Therefore, as Mayor, I hereby pro- times in a life-threatening Blood Donor Month. Mayoral claim the month of January as tion," says Jan Twait. proclamations are recognizing the 'Volunteer Blood Donor Month' for Mayors in many area importance of blood in saving lives our community and urge all citizens proclaiming January as and it also encourages local citizens to pay tribute those who donate for Blood Donor Month, to donate blood, others in need; I urge all citizens, pie will respond now and This annual month-long obser- businesses, & organizations to form ular basis throughout vance provides the Siouxland blood donor groups.' Those interested in Community Blood Bank an oppor- "We need a lot of blood on a reg- blood should call the tunity to pay tribute to past and pre- ular basis to treat patients in our Community Blood Bank at sent blood donors, and to extend an community, and we hope Volunteer 25224208 or 800-798,4208, invitation to donate blood to those Blood Donor Month will put into the blood bank websitt healthy, eligible individuals who perspective just how much we rely www.siou have previously never given the gift on our blood donors," said Janette