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'Everybody is tired': Haskell Memorial Hospital shares coping with latest COVID-19 surge

HASKELL, TEXAS (KTAB/KRBC) - Despite an uptick in COVID-19 cases and entering the third year of the pandemic, Haskell Memorial Hospital staff are doing their best to overcome ongoing challenges presented by the virus.

Hospital CEO Michelle Stevens confirms there has been an increase in positive cases from tests performed at the hospital recently. However, one of the bigger struggles facing Haskell Memorial is not being overwehelmed with virus patients, but pandemic burnout.

"In a small Hospital like we are, it takes everyone to run the hospital, so here we're all exhausted, but we have a great group of people and they're working hard," said Stevens.

Something that helps ease current strain is remembering past struggles the pandemic dealt the hospital, says Stevens. Last year about this time, she says, rooms were full with COVID-positive patients.

"We don't have nearly as many staff out, we don't have near as many patients in house with COVID," says Stevens. "I think that's due to a number of things: Maybe the virus has changed, maybe mutated, weakened a little bit. I think it's also people getting vaccinated."

Speaking with other rural healthcare providers, the CEO has found much the same as what her staff is experiencing - while things may not be great for now, they once were a lot worse.

Moving forward, Stevens says she and her staff are rolling with the punches, looking toward the tailing of this current virus surge and a day when COVID finally fades into the background.

"I think there is a light at the end of the tunnel and it will get easier, but it will just take time," said Stevens.

According to the Department of State Health Services COVID dashboard, there are an estimated 19 active cases in Haskell County where the hospital is located.

COVID vaccines and booster are currently available at Haskell Memorial by appointment - so are monoclonal antibody infusion treatments for those that meet transfusion criteria. For more information call the hospital's clinic at 1-940-228-0612.


HMH ranked among top ten critical access hospitals in Texas

HASKELL, TEXAS – Haskell Memorial Hospital was recently named a Top Ten Texas CAH Gold Standard Performer. This designation, awarded by national professional services firm CliftonLarsonAllen, LLP, measured four key performance indicators of top-performing critical access hospitals across the country. Haskell Memorial achieved the gold standard on all four indicators – financial strength, community health, patient satisfaction and total cost of care (TCOC).

Through an in-depth analysis of more than 1,200 critical access hospitals nationwide, CLA identified five key themes common to the critical access hospitals that achieved the Gold Standard designation, including:
• great quality delivery and high efficiency with strong ancillary and outpatient revenue that meet the demands of the community
• high community health outcomes and lower total costs of care
• alignment with physicians
• focus on growth
• commitment to improve productivity and reduce costs

“We are honored to be selected as one of the top ten critical access hospitals in Texas based on CLA’s report,” said Michelle Stevens, CEO, Haskell Memorial Hospital. “Thanks to our dedicated staff and providers, we are able to provide outstanding patient care while working to keep healthcare affordable for everyone in the communities we serve. It’s my privilege to work with such an incredible team and I’m proud of the entire organization for achieving this recognition.”

CliftonLarsonAllen identifies the top critical access hospitals as “Gold Standard performers” based on their ability to achieve significantly above average performance on all key areas of focus over a sustained period of time. The most recent report includes results from 2015 through 2019.

Haskell Memorial Hospital is a 25-bed critical access hospital with inpatient and outpatient services including an emergency department, two outpatient clinics, radiology and lab services, respiratory therapy, physical therapy and more. The facility is adding a permanent MRI machine in early 2022 to further its commitment to serving the patients of Haskell County and the surrounding communities.

Haskell Memorial Hospital Welcomes New Physician

Haskell County prepares for community-wide survey efforts

Haskell County, Texas (October 8, 2021) The Haskell County Broadband Committee invites local stakeholders, community residents, and media to attend a special kickoff event on Monday, October 18th to discuss expanding and improving broadband access, adoption, and use throughout the county.

Attendees will learn more about broadband access in Haskell County, the Connected Communities program at Connected Nation Texas (CN Texas), and the project timeline. The meeting will conclude with a Q/A session.

The Broadband Committee, who will work closely with CN Texas, is made up of the following local stakeholders:
• Kenny Thompson: Haskell County Judge
• Bert Alvarez: Mayor, Haskell City Council
• Laura Bowers: Director, Haskell DCOH
• Renee Dudensing: Community Broadband Advocate
• June Ellis: City Manager, City of Haskell
• Jamie Ferguson: Appraiser, Haskell County Appraisal District • Dusty Garison: Editor and Reporter, Haskell Star Newspaper • Lonnie Hise: Superintendent, Haskell CISD
• Christina Isbell: Councilwoman, Haskell City Council
• Mary Belle Olson: COO, Haskell Memorial Hospital
• Tamara Smart: Municipal Judge, Rochester and Rule, Texas

The Broadband Committee is hosting a community kick-off event on Monday, October 18, at 5:30pm, at the Haskell Memorial Hospital Education Building.

"Haskell County is excited to be working with Connected Nation Texas to better understand the broadband landscape of our community. The more we understand the current digital resources of our community, the better we can serve the unique needs of the residents," said Haskell County Judge Kenny Thompson. "I hope everyone takes part in the survey because improving broadband access, adoption, and use is important and your feedback plays a critical role."

If you cannot attend the kickoff meeting, the Haskell County Broadband Committee is asking residents and organizations to take 10 minutes to fill out this short survey. Simply choose the survey category or categories that represent you or your organization. https://myconnectedcommunity.org/haskell-county/

The goal of the survey is to identify unique challenges and opportunities for expanding high-speed internet in Haskell County so that every family, business, and community organization can access the critical resources needed to be connected. Haskell County will work with CN Texas to help close the Digital Divide within the community. The project will have no cost to the county thanks to the Priddy Foundation, headquartered in Wichita Falls. Haskell County is one of seven communities in the region to receive funding for this type of broadband initiative.

A Technology Action Plan will be developed for the county by leveraging Connected Community Engagement Program and will be important to include as much information as possible so that no area is left out of this plan.

The Connected Program has been used in nearly 650 communities across the country to develop county or regional Technology Action Plans that have both short term and long-term broadband solutions.

For more information or if you have questions, email info@connectednation.org or head to connectednation.org/texas.

# # #

About Connected Nation Texas: CN Texas is the statewide subsidiary of the national nonprofit Connected Nation. Our mission is to improve lives by providing innovative solutions that expand access to and increase the adoption and use of broadband (high speed internet) and its related technologies for all people. Everyone belongs in a Connected Nation.

Connected Nation works with consumers, local community leaders, states, technology providers, and foundations to develop and implement technology expansion programs with core competencies centered on a mission to improve digital inclusion for people and places previously underserved or overlooked. For more information, please visit: connectednation.org and follow Connected Nation on Facebook and Twitter.

About the Priddy Foundation: The mission of the Priddy Foundation is dedicated to the support of programs in human services, education, the arts, and health, which offer significant potential for individual development and community improvement throughout Northern Texas and Southern Oklahoma. More information can be found at: https://priddyfdn.org/

Haskell Memorial Hospital Welcomes New Physician


Haskell Memorial Hospital is excited to welcome Jordan Earle, FNP-C, as the new HMH Clinic nurse practitioner. Jordan will be shadowing Dr. Rose and Jeanne Cason, FNP-C for two weeks to learn the EMR system and clinic routines, then she will begin seeing patients Tuesday through Friday.

Jordan earned her Diploma in Nursing from Covenant School of Nursing in Lubbock, Texas. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Texas Tech University Health Science Center with her Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Jordan was in the top ten percent of her class when she earned her Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner from Texas Tech University Health Science Center in May 2021.

She is a certified cosmetic injector with Botox, dermal fillers and sclerotherapy.

Jordan began her medical career as a Certified Nurse Aide at the Kent County Nursing Home. She later worked as a CICU/Telemetry RN at Hendrick Medical Center in Abilene. Most recently, Jordan was a charge nurse at Knox County Hospital where she oversaw the emergency department and inpatient unit, supervised nursing staff, and worked as the primary intake nurse in the ED.

A native of Jayton, Jordan and her husband, Daniel, live in Knox City with their four-year-old son, Emmett. They enjoy riding horses, taking care of their animals and traveling to new places.

Jordan is dedicated to improving patient outcomes using evidence-based practice through health assessments and compassion for every patient. We look forward to welcoming her as part of the HMH family!

Haskell Memorial Hospital Welcomes New Physician

Haskell Memorial Hospital Welcomes New Physician

John Rose, D.O., R.Ph., to begin seeing patients Tuesday, Sept. 8

HASKELL, TEXAS -- Haskell Memorial Hospital is pleased to welcome John Rose, D.O., R. Ph., as a family practice physician and OB/GYN. With more than 25 years of experience in medicine, Dr. Rose specializes in family practice, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, and is a licensed pharmacist.

Dr. Rose earned his Doctor of Osteopathy from Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine in Fort Worth, Texas, and received his Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy from Southwestern Oklahoma State University School of Pharmacy in Weatherford, OK.

“I am excited to join HMH as a family practice provider,” said Rose. “I look forward to serving Haskell and the surrounding communities not only as a family practice provider, but by providing OB/GYN services and pediatrics to families in the area.”

Dr. Rose joins the hospital from Concord Medical Group. He was previously employed with Seymour Rural Health Clinic and multiple private practice clinics in Texas and Oklahoma where he where he served as a family practice provider and OB/GYN. As a provider at Haskell Memorial, Dr. Rose will see patients in the hospital clinic and emergency room as well as patients who are admitted to the hospital.

“On behalf of Haskell Memorial Hospital and its board of directors, I welcome Dr. Rose to the hospital and to the area, said Chris Strickland, HMH CEO. “Dr. Rose’s experience in rural healthcare will be a valuable asset to the organization, and his expertise in various types of medicine will allow the hospital to expand its clinic services and offer important healthcare close to home.”

In addition to practicing medicine, Dr. Rose has extensive teaching experience. He was a clinical trainer for various programs during his tenure with Seymour Rural Health Clinic, and was a volunteer faculty member with the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Family Medicine Residency and the Saint Anthony Family Practice Residency, both in Oklahoma City.

“Dr. Rose’s teaching experience will help HMH attract students from all aspects of healthcare,” said Strickland. “I look forward to working with him as we expand our services and become more competitive in obtaining high-quality healthcare providers.”

A native of Farwell, Texas, Dr. Rose and his wife, Linda, have four children, Michael, Matthew, Meaghan and Melissa. In his free time, Dr. Rose enjoys genealogy research and is a registrar for the Sons of the American Revolution.

Dr. Rose will begin seeing patients in the HMH Clinic on Tuesday, September 8. To schedule an appointment for healthcare services or for a free introductory meeting, please call the clinic at 940-864-8513.

Haskell Memorial Hospital Welcomes New Physician

Haskell Memorial Hospital 2020 Community Health Needs Assessment

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