Hunger starts as health center CEO

The Jefferson County Health Center will undergo a changing of the guard this week when current CEO Deb Cardin hands over the reins to her successor Bryan Hunger. Although Hunger stepped into the role April 18, he will officially take over Cardin’s responsibilities Friday. Hunger, whose most recent role was the chief provider services officer for the Regional Medical Center in Manchester, said he’s impressed with the health center. “There’s already a really strong foundation for success here. We already have a good medical staff and great leadership,” he said, adding that his goal would be to maintain the course the facility is on. “We just want to stay on top of current trends — health care is constantly changing. We need to be ready to adapt, and stay on top of legislative changes,” he said.

Bryan HungerHunger grew up in the rural southeast Iowa town of Mt. Union and graduated from Winfield-Mt. Union High School. “I played basketball in high school and I competed in Fairfield against Maharishi School,” he said. After graduating, Hunger went on a two-year church mission trip to Sacramento, California. “That was a real eye-opener for me,” he said. “I realized that there were a lot of people out there in need of help. It gave me a nice perspective on doing more than focusing on myself.” After his time in California, Hunger attended Southeastern Community College in West Burlington for one year before transferring to Brigham Young University-Idaho. “I loved it; it was a great experience. I met my wife, Angela, there,” he said of Brigham Young University. He graduated from the university with a bachelor’s degree in economics. However, it was during his time at Southeastern that he realized he had a passion for working in the health care field. “I spent some time volunteering at Great River Medical Center — it was right across the street from the college,” Hunger said. “I got to see different areas of the hospital — its whole mission is to help people.” Though Hunger learned he had a passion for helping others, he also discovered that it wouldn’t be by the bedside. “I figured out that I’m not a science person,” he said laughing. “I’m a business person. I wanted to be involved but medicine wasn’t for me. I knew administration was for me.” Hunger graduated from Ohio University in 2007 with a master’s degree in health administration.

With Angela being from Texas originally, the couple moved to Galveston, where Hunger worked as a practice manager for The University of Texas Medical Branch. “I managed three family practices within a correctional facility,” Hunger said. After about a year in Texas, Hunger moved his family a little closer to where he grew up. Hunger’s most recent role was at Regional Medical Center in Manchester, Iowa, as chief provider services officer. “Angela has always liked a small-town atmosphere,” he said, adding that Iowa was a great place to raise their five children. The Hunger family lived in Manchester for seven years. Hunger said his children would attend schools within the Fairfield Community School District. “The older ones will miss their friends,” he said. “But they love the idea of being near their grandparents, who live in Washington.”

Deb CardinHunger, who was initially selected by the health center’s search committee and then later by the board, was Cardin’s first choice as a successor. “He was mentored by a CEO I admired the most in my career,” Cardin said. “[Hunger’s] brother is a CEO at the Washington County Hospitals and Clinics. I respect him. I thought they would be able to bring in collaborative efforts.” Cardin, who has been a nurse for 40 years and with the health center since 1999, said she has “mixed feelings” about retiring. She said she will miss checking on the patients every morning. “We’ve developed a culture here. People here are here for the right reasons. It doesn’t matter whether it’s nursing, dietary, maintenance or housekeeping, they know as a team how to deliver quality and compassionate care — I will miss that the most,” she said. “It’s really been an honor and a privilege to lead this organization.” Now, Cardin said that she and her husband, Mike, a permanent substitute for Cardinal Community School District, and their dog Bogy, a therapy dog at the school, plan to move to Pella to their new home on Red Rock Lake. “The kids were in tears,” she said of Mike and Bogy’s exit from Cardinal. “It was a really emotional day for them.” The couple plans to spend time with their grandchildren during retirement. Hunger, whose time at the health center is just beginning, is ready for the challenge.

Jefferson County Health Center Announces new CEO

The Board of Trustees of Jefferson County Health Center announced today the appointment of Bryan T. Hunger as new Chief Executive Officer effective April 18, 2016. Mr. Hunger brings more than 9 years of health care experience to this role.

“The JCHC Board of Trustees is confident that Bryan Hunger is the right leader to continue to meet the needs of our patients and the communities we serve.” says board president Renee Rebling. “We welcome Mr. Hunger and his family to JCHC and to Fairfield”.

Bryan HungerMr. Hunger graduated from Brigham Young University-Idaho with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and went on to earn his Masters in Health Administration from Ohio University in 2007. Mr. Hunger earned the Certified Medical Practice Executive (CMPE) board certification in medical practice management in 2014. His most recent role was at Regional Medical Center in Manchester, Iowa as Chief Provider Services Officer.

“It is very important to me to have a smooth transition in the leadership and I will continue to serve in my role until the end of April to ensure that Jefferson County Health Center is best positioned for future success”, says Deb Cardin retiring CEO. I believe that Bryan Hunger is very capable and ready to lead JCHC into the future and to the next level of success.”

"I'm honored, and I'm grateful to the JCHC board for the opportunity to lead this exceptional , dedicated and talented staff of professionals," said Mr. Hunger. "This is a terrific opportunity that any leader would welcome.”

Jefferson County Health Center earns AAAASF accreditation for patient safety

American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities (AAAASF)

Completed thorough review process

CHICAGO, IL — Jefferson County Health Center, Fairfield, Iowa has demonstrated its commitment to patient safety by gaining accreditation from the American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities (AAAASF). AAAASF just celebrated its 35th year of promoting the highest quality patient safety in the ambulatory surgery setting (office-based or outpatient), as well as rehabilitation and outpatient therapy agencies and rural health clinics. AAAASF requires 100 percent compliance with all accreditation standards and does not offer partial accreditation. If a facility fails to meet any standard, it must correct the deficiency or risk denial or loss of accreditation.

To earn its accreditation, Jefferson County Health Center passed inspection on hundreds of important criteria concerning patient safety. AAAASF facility inspectors are board certified medical specialists trained to perform a thorough and complete facility inspection. AAAASF facility inspectors follow a regimented procedure to inspect an outpatient surgery facility in the following categories:

  • General Environment
  • Operating Room Environment, Policy and Procedures
  • Recovery Room Environment, Policy and Procedures
  • General Safety in the Facility
  • Blood and Medications
  • Medical Records
  • Quality Assessment and Quality Improvement
  • Personnel
  • Anesthesia

About the AAAASF

The American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities, Inc. (AAAASF) was established in 1980 to standardize and improve the quality of medical and surgical care in outpatient facilities and assure the public that patient safety is top priority in an accredited facility. More than 2,300 outpatient facilities are accredited by AAAASF, one of the largest not-for-profit accrediting organizations in the United States. Surgeons, legislators, state and national health agencies and patients acknowledge that AAAASF sets the "gold standard" for quality patient care.

AAAASF programs include surgical, procedural, oral maxillofacial, international surgical and dental. AAAASF is also deemed by Medicare to accredit ambulatory surgery centers, rehabilitation and outpatient therapy agencies and rural health clinics.

For more information, visit American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities, Inc.

JCHC Walk-In Clinic

“This is a great opportunity and a way that we could offer care and services — especially to [patients] after hours and on the weekends,” said Ryan Ford, Jefferson County Health Center’s director of clinics about the health center’s new walk-in clinic.

Annalisa Morgan, ARNP and Brenda Halls, ARNP The clinic, which Ford said came to fruition through the collaborative efforts of health center administrative staff and physicians, will offer quality care and quick access for those experiencing minor illnesses and injuries who don’t want to wait to see their primary care provider. With each appointment lasting around 15 minutes, Ford said the walk-in clinic would provide access to quality and quick care. “If you don’t want to wait for your primary care provider, or you come down with a cold or flu, bad bug bite, or any other kind of minor illness, we want to offer quick access, so that you are not having to wait on an appointment,” Ford said. Those experiencing an emergency would need to go to the emergency room.

The clinic has two exam rooms, and will be managed by two advanced registered nurse practitioners, both of whom currently practice at the health center’s JCHC Clinics. “We’re very excited about providing this service to the community,” said Annalisa Morgan, ARNP who will co-manage the clinic. “She’s one of our own,” Ford said of Morgan who has been working with the health center since 2011. Morgan holds a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from the University of Iowa and a Master of Science in nursing from Clarke University in Dubuque. Brenda Halls has been an ARNP for 10 years. She has worked with the health center for more than five years. Halls earned both her BSN and MSN from Graceland University. Halls said the clinic would offer more flexibility for patients and for the health center, and that children won’t always have to miss school when they need to be seen.

The clinic will be open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday - Friday • 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Noon to 6 p.m. Sundays.

Hospital CEO Deb Cardin said it’s not just about the convenience the new clinic would provide, but it’s also about continuity of care. “We know about the convenience,” Cardin said. “But we don’t want to jeopardize continuity of care. So when patients visit the walk-in clinic, their records are readily available so that [providers] can see their records.” Cardin said the health center would “piggy-back” off the University of Iowa’s medical records system called Epic — an electronic health records software. The walk-in clinic would have access to patient records who have received care at other area facilities, if their records were housed in Epic. Ford said the health center would begin utilizing the Epic system April 23. “Roughly 60 percent of records nationwide are under Epic,” Ford said, adding that the software would allow the health center far greater access to patient records. Ford said even those who might not be from Iowa, whose records are housed in Epic would be able to access their own basic records if they needed to be seen at the walk-in clinic in Fairfield. “Within Epic you have what’s called “my chart,” you wouldn’t be able to pull all of your medical records up, but a patient could go on their smart phone and pull up a partial record that would include allergies, medication, a problem list — that’s pretty much what it would be for continuity of care documents.” However, anyone who is a patient of local clinics, such as Medical Arts would automatically receive continuity of care at the walk-in clinic. Cardin said X-rays and labs would be available to patients seen at the walk-in clinic.

Although the clinic will be open and taking patients at its temporary location adjacent to the Rehabilitation Services Department Monday, it will eventually be housed in the health center’s new addition. “Construction will break ground in the spring on the new addition,” Ford said, adding that in addition to the walk-in clinic, the new addition would house the magnetic resonance imaging center, the sleep lab and a specialty clinic. Patients will have access to the walk-in clinic’s temporary location from an outside door south of the health center’s main entrance and north of the McCreery Cancer Center’s outside entrance.

For more information, contact the health center at 641-472-4111.

JCHC MEDICAL ARTS CLINIC welcomes Dr. James Trent, MD Family Practice & Dermatology

Dr. Trent obtained his undergraduate degree at Brigham Young University in Utah. He received his medical degree from St. Matthew’s University School of Medicine, Grand Cayman, in 2005, then completed a three-year Family Practice residency at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

Dr. James Trent, MDDr. Trent worked in Family Practice in Wyoming, and offered dermatology services in Florida and Nevada. He will offer skin cancer treatment, general dermatology and cosmetic dermatology (fillers and botox) at JCHC Medical Arts Clinic.

Dr. Trent married wife Lisa in 1995 and the couple has eight children. He enjoys working in rural and small town envirornments and looks forward to serving the Fairfield community.

For more information about Dr. Trent or to schedule an appointment, please call the JCHC Medical Arts Clinic at 641-472-4156.

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Fairfield, Iowa 52556
(641) 472-4111


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