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Galveston County Health District - Providing Credible Service since 1971

 

9850-A Emmett F. Lowry Expy, Suite A108, Texas City Texas 77591 - Phone - 409-938-7221

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Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 939
La Marque, TX 77568
The Executive
Report
Phone: 409-938-2401
Fax:
409-938-2243
 
The Executive Report is a monthly summary of key activities and significant happenings in the Health District overall.  This summary of activities and/or happenings may involve: one of many different public health programs, the Galveston Area Ambulance Authority (GAAA), the 4C's federally-funded community health clinics (CHC's), and/or collaborate efforts among community health partners. 

If you have any questions or comments, please contact:
Pisa Lewis
, Executive Assistant,
at 409 938-2401, by email:plewis@gchd.org; or
Kurt Koopmann
, Public Information Officer,
at 409-938-2211, by email:kkoopman@gchd.org.

August 27 , 2003

Archives


   Kids Health Fest
   Progress On Strategic Health Plan

Health District in the News  
  Vaccines Cornerstone of Good Health
  Back-to-school Immunization
   Kids Health Fest
  Galveston County Beach Watch

District Executes Contracts
  Pollution Control
   STD-HIV
   HIV Services
   Immunization
   TB
   Hictchcock and Texas City ISD's
   GAAA-ARMS

Other Operational Items
   Inclement Weather
   Employee Group Health Insurance
   Grant received from Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX)

4C’s Clinic Updates
  Responses to JCAHO recommendations
   Increasing access to the 4C's Clinics
  District staff tour Strawberry Clinic
   Fiscal management initiatives
   Discussions with UTMB about availability of eye examinations
   GCHD Access Program submitted renewal grant proposal to HRSA

KIDS Health Fest Tops August Activities
  A Kids Health Fest, held 8/4 thru 8/15, resulted in over 948 of persons getting vaccinated with over 2,480 of vaccine doses. The success of this back-to-school initiative was in part due to the many fun activities for the kids, included face painting, coloring and essay contests, videos, puppet shows and visits from the tooth fairy, Mr. Owl and the clown. A host of volunteers from the health district (20), Mainland Medical Center (4), AHEC (3), and the community were instrumental in making the activities available. In addition, generous donations from local businesses, Mainland Medical Center and Health District employees were used as prizes for the contest and incentives for children getting immunized. Children received pencils and stickers donated by Wal-Mart in Kemah, 500 food coupons donated by Chik-fil-A in Clear Lake Shores, 150 lunch kits donated by Mainland Medical Center, and 180 tooth brushes donated by the tooth fairy of AHEC. Evaluations completed by the parents showed that 96% ranked the service as excellent and good. For additional information, please contact Shirley Carr, RN, Director of Community Health Nursing, at scarr@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2457.
Progress On Strategic Health Plan
  This month, health district staff has continued to work on various aspects of the strategic health planning process. The public health planner is working to finalize draft goals and objectives as a result of feedback at an Immunization Summit held on July 15th. This month, Dr. Guidry and Charles Kelly, Senior Health Coordinator, continued to meet with city officials in the district, namely with officials in La Marque, Kemah, Hitchcock, Santa Fe, Galveston, and Tiki Island. After completing scheduled meetings through the first of September, Dr. Guidry will outline a summary of city perspectives and future opportunities as a result of these meetings. On September 11, 2003, the Health District will obtain feedback regarding its priority to address environmental health issues at an Environmental Health Summit. Participants in the summit will be comprised of invited attendees that represent diverse community and regulatory perspectives. The final Governing Board plan to increase access to the 4C's Clinic will be incorporated into the Galveston County Health Plan to be presented to both health boards for adoption in the Fall. For additional information please contact Brian Rutherford, Health Planner, at brutherford@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2275.
Health District in the News
On July 31, 2003,the Galveston County Daily News published a guest column by John Zendt, Chairman of the United Board of Health. The column, " Vaccines Cornerstone of Good Health" encouraged parents to take advantage of the Kids Health Fest conducted by the District in an effort to stress the importance of getting children immunized according to schedule.
On August 1, 2003, the Galveston County Daily News published an editorial promoting the District's annual back-to-school immunization effort. In the editorial, parents were encouraged to bring their children in early for necessary immunizations.
On August 7, 2003, local print media published stories on the kick off of Kids Health Fest at the Galveston County Health District. The Galveston County Daily News and the Texas City Sun both included photographs and information for the public on the importance of keeping children adequately immunized.
On August 14, 2003, Ronnie Schultz, Director of Pollution Control was interviewed by Janice Williamson with KHOU Channel 11. The interview took place on the beach in Galveston and centered on a recently released report by the Natural Resources Defense Council concerning beach closures due to pollution. Schultz discussed the local program known as Galveston County Beach Watch and the fact that the program will be expanded in the coming year in an effort to protect those citizens visiting county beaches.
District Executes Contracts
The Health District executed the Pollution Control contract with TCEQ for Air Monitoring ($108,000) for a two year period, which includes the Biowatch program. The Pollution Control - General Land Office (GLO) contract was amended to extend the existing contract period through August 2003.For additional information contact Ronnie Schultz, Pollution Control Director, at rschultz@gchd.org or call (409) 938-2314
Contracts with TDH, include: STD-HIV, for renewal of an existing contract in the amount of $6,311 for part of salary/benefits and some travel for one employee. Also, the HIV - Surveillance renewal of existing contract, $36,063 for salary/benefits and travel. These amounts are unchanged from the FY03 funding. For additional information contact Jim Hilton, at jhilton@gchd.org or call (409) 765-2528.
A renewal of an existing contract with TDH for HIV Services in the amount of $106,591 to contract with outside agencies for services to persons living with AIDS. For additional information, please contact Anne McMorris at amcmorris@gchd.org, or call (409) 765-2514.
A three (3) month extension of an existing contract with TDH Immunization in the amount of $43,761 was signed with a new start date of January 1, 2004. Also the grant to renew this existing contract for the period January 1, 2004 to December 31, 2004, in the amount of $217,073 to administer and promote immunizations in Galveston County was signed.
TDH - TB, renewal of an existing contract for Directly Observed Therapy (DOT) activities for $36,760, a cut of about $7,000. Also this contract funds a state paid position in the amount of $42,448, the incumbent is retiring and the funds will be cut 35% when transferred to local dollars. For additional information please contract Shirley Carr at scarr@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2457.
Contracts with Hitchcock and Texas City ISD's, to provide physicals for children in the Head Start Program. For additional information contact Susan Studebaker at sstudebaker@gchd.org, or call (409) 949-3406.
GAAA-ARMS, a Collection Fee Contract, to turn over return mail and 91-180 day old bills for collection. For additional information contract Kathy Barroso at kbarroso@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2257.
Other Operational Items
The Executive Team and District Management Team have approved the following policy in the last month: Inclement Weather, which sets expectations of employees and supervisors in the event of an emergency. The Health District has a legislative mandate to provide for the public's health in emergency situations. As adopted by both Health Boards, Human Resource policies will be approved by the Executive Director and brought to the Boards on an annual basis. For additional information, please contact Kathrine Hall, Human Resources Director, at khall@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2230.
Employee Group Health Insurance premiums increased by 40% effective August 1, 2003. Due to the increase in cost, participating employees will now be asked to contribute $75 each month toward the cost of Health insurance effective October 1, 2003. The District is currently in the process of exploring other Health Insurance Plans and/or options and will update as information becomes available. Also, effective October 1st, the Health District will no longer supplement the cost of employee Dental insurance; however, employees will be able to purchase Dental insurance through the 125 Plan. For additional information contract Kathy Barroso at kbarroso@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2457.
Through a grant from the Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX), the Health District has an opportunity to purchase equipment to enhance its ability to respond to a public health threat. $30,000 has been earmarked for public health from a total of $202,539 awarded to the Galveston County Office of Emergency Management for first responders. The Health District has proposed using this money to purchase a vehicle to transport personnel and equipment, a mobile radio to enable communication to GCHD staff and first responder agencies, and a power inverter to operate electrical equipment from the vehicle. Other departments receiving funds under this grant include the Sheriff's Department, EMS Departments, and the Emergency Management Office. A workshop was held with Commissioners' Court on August 25th to discuss the grant. The Commissioners' Court must provide its approval prior to the purchase of the equipment. The Emergency Management Office has until October 3rd to submit the equipment list through an on-line process. For additional information, contact Brian Rutherford, Health Planner, at brutherford@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2275.
4C’s Clinic Updates
Responses to JCAHO recommendations for improving the clinic were submitted to JCAHO on August 8. A tracking tool established by the Clinic Leadership Team documents the Clinics' progress in implementing the recommendations. For more information, please contact Pam Jahnke, Quality Management Director, at pjahnke@gchd.org, or call (409) 949-3406.
The Executive and Clinic Leadership Teams have made progress in crafting a draft plan to present to the Governing Board with the goals of increasing access to the 4C's Clinics and operating the clinics at full capacity. A progress report on the draft plan and objectives will be presented to the Governing Board at its August meeting and will be finalized as part of the Galveston County Health Plan targeted for completion in October 2003. For more information, please contact Susan Studebaker, Clinical Services Director, at sstudebaker@gchd.org, or call (409) 949-3406.
As part of developing a plan to increase access, district staff toured the Strawberry Clinic in Pasadena to identify best practices in clinic flow. The Strawberry Clinic recently underwent clinic re-engineering, which resulted in improved access to care, patient satisfaction, and improved use of physician time in seeing patients. In addition, employees in the 4C's have brainstormed ways to improve the 4C's Clinics at a clinic in-service. Feedback and lessons-learned have been incorporated, where possible, into planning efforts. For additional information, please call Umair Shah, MD, MPH, Chief Medical Officer, at ushah@gchd.org, or call (409) 949-3406.
As part of on-going fiscal management initiatives, a memo was sent to physicians and dentists employed in the 4C's Clinics outlining the Health District's policy, commitments and management review of continuing education and book requests. The Health District will maintain a commitment to making available job-related CME and books in a cost effective manner. For additional information, please contact Mark Guidry, MD, MPH, Chief Executive Officer, at mguidry@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2401.
The Health District has engaged in discussions with UTMB about the availability of certain eye examinations for 4C's patients. The Clinic Leadership Team is researching current recommendations, screening methods that may occur in a primary care practice, and plan to develop clinical screening guidelines for detecting visual impairment among diabetics and other patients. Once the assessment is completed, the Health District will be in a better position to determine the number and types of patients that may need referral for more extensive eye examinations and will make future recommendations to the Governing Board. For more information, please contact Jay Holland, Chief Operating Officer, at jholland@gchd.org, or call (409) 938-2260
The Galveston County Health Access Program through the UTMB's Office of Community Outreach has submitted its renewal grant proposal to HRSA for the third (and final) year of funding. This proposal includes $96,000 to the Galveston County Health District to provide case management services. Goals for this project include the improvement of effectiveness, efficiency, and quality of care as well as cost savings for the patient population and the system. For additional information, please contact Susan Studebaker, Clinical Services Director, at sstudebaker@gchd.org, or call (409) 949-3406.