December 2021 - The Pulse

The Pulse

In This Edition
Advanced Leadership Academy  Seasonal Affective Disorder Foundation News Welcome to our New Co-Workers
Department Spotlight The Plate Condolences National Health Observances
Did you Know?  Safe Toys & Gift Month

Lynn Riesenberg completes IHA Advanced Leadership Academy 

Iowa Hospital Association launched the Advanced Leadership Academy to support Iowa hospitals as they develop the next generation of leaders. The academy provides a blended approach to learning with six, in-person learning sessions combined with distance education over 12 months. IHA provides organizations with the opportunity to customize the academy to the needs of the participant and hospital. 

Lynn Riesenberg and Scott EllisLynn Riesenberg, Director of Dialysis, RN, BSN, MBA, MA, recently completed the Advanced Leadership Academy program.  This included learning projects and demonstrating a commitment to leadership excellence under the mentorship of Scott Ellis, Vice President of Patient Services.  Besides the projects, students were asked to complete and submit  summaries outlining descriptions, goals, and results of their projects with supplemental materials. 

"This was a great program for leadership development and collaboration with all disciplines within the hospital leadership team. I benefitted from learning from others including CEO’s from across Iowa to help shape the healthcare landscape of tomorrow," said Lynn. "Curriculum based education while collaborating with Iowa Hospital Leaders helps to strategize and migrate through the ever changing healthcare landscape."

The academy’s curriculum includes:

  • Advocacy leadership.
  • Conflict management.
  • Data for decision-making.
  • Health care finance.
  • Lessons about leadership.
  • Medical staff and board relations.

"I'm proud of Lynn and the hard work she put into completing this program," said Scott Ellis, Vice President of Patient Services. "This IHA program has served her well and we look forward to Lynn's future leadership initiatives." 

Participants completed improvement projects in their facilities and presented the results to other facilities at a recent livestream event. A summary of Lynn's project named Nursing Recruitment and Retention: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, can be found here on page 9.

Department SpotlightMSPO-Medical, Surgical, Pediatric, Orthopedic 

Our department has 19 full time, 9 part time, and 22 relief staff. As you can imagine, it's nearly impossible to get them all together for a group photo considering their many differing schedules. 

The biggest challenge faced in our department has been every part of COVID-19 and the pandemic. The toll it takes on nursing staff is physical, mental, and emotional. It’s exhausting, hard work. Having family members upset that they cannot visit loved ones has been hard. Some family members become very angry that their loved one has COVID-19, as they believe it is not real. Staffing the COVID-19 unit has also been difficult as the census is unpredictable. We've been resilient and supportive of each other as best as we can. 

Something not everyone knows about our department is that 19 of our staff members have been at St. Anthony for 14 or more years!! That's what we call job satisfaction!

Our department is most proud of the four nurses (so far) who have been nominated for Daisy Awards. 
From Left: Amanda Grade, Melissa Burgart, Jill Pudenz (with Jill Rath, Director) and Cara Kraus (with Jill Rath).

DaisyDaisy 2Daisy

Collison Retirement

Help Desk

Welcome PolicyStat!PolicyStat

Making St. Anthony policies easier to find and use! 

Wednesday, December 1st, marks the transition for all St. Anthony policies to be available through PolicyStat. You will find the link to PolicyStat in the same location as the previous link to policies and procedures on the St. Anthony intranet.

What to expect:

  • Policies and guidelines are now available in PolicyStat.
  • Users can login to PolicyStat using their St. Anthony login credentials. Click here to login.
  • You will find a desktop icon to PolicyStat on all St. Anthony computers.
  • PolicyStat makes it easy to search for policies and to locate all related documents. Learn more here.

PolicyStat Link:

SADSeasonal Affective Disorder - When is it more than the winter blues?

During the month of December, we focus on Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). According to Health Hub, SAD is a form of depression related to the changing of the seasons. With less daylight and colder temperatures, it's linked to a biochemical imbalance in the brain.

If these activities do not help or your symptoms are getting worse, talk to your health care provider. You can also help by checking in on your family, friends, and coworkers to see how they are doing.  Find out more here.

  • Feeling sad or depressed moods.
  • Loss of interest in activities.
  • Change of appetite.
  • Change of sleeping patterns.
  • Loss of energy or increased fatigue.
  • Difficulty thinking, concentrating, or making decisions.
  • Thoughts of death or suicide.
These activities can make you feel better
  • Doing something you enjoy
  • Going outside in the sunlight
  • Spending time with family and friends
  • Eating healthy and avoiding foods with lots of sugar


Meet your new co-workers who joined us this past month. 

  • Patricia Beck, Respiratory Therapy
  • Camryn Bruch, MSP
  • Ramona Chajon, Nursing Home
  • Justice Gessert, BMU
  • Megan Hanson, Lab
  • Jordan Hepp, Lab
  • Grace Hoffman, Food & Nutrition
  • April Holm, Radiology
  • Avery Lanham, Nursing Home
  • Cameron Watson, Food & Nutrition
  • Julie Nielson, Lab
  • Garrett Smith, Food & Nutrition

The PlateHealthy Eating Tips Over Holidays

Holidays are meant to be a time of enjoyment, but they can also be a time where many of us can lose focus on the importance of good nutrition and exercise. Practice and planning can help you avoid those extra holiday pounds while still fitting in those favorite holiday dishes and treats into a healthful meal plan.

Consider these tips during the holidays:

  • Don't skip meals, especially before a holiday party. You will be less tempted to overeat if you have already eaten a small meal or snack. Never go “starving”.
  • Look before you eat. Check out the whole buffet and decide what you really want, what you will sample, and what you will skip before you fill your plate.
  • Allow yourself one trip through the buffet, and then move to another room to eat and visit with friends and family.
  • Don’t count on others to bring the healthy foods. Bring the fruit or veggie platter yourself so you know there will be something healthy to eat.
  • Fill up on low calorie fruits and vegetables, and stick with only one dessert serving.
  • Eat slowly and savor every bite. Remember, the holidays are about being with family and friends, the good food is just a perk.
  • Watch your beverage choices: hot chocolate, apple cider, and eggnog calories can add up quickly.
  • Before you go back for a second serving, wait 10 minutes to see if you really are still hungry.
  • Before you become full, take a break and save room for a smaller portion of your favorite dessert. If you do overeat, go lighter on the next meal or make sure you compensate with extra exercise.
  • Have a plan for holiday treats and leftovers. Give away home baked goods to neighbors, friends, or others in need.
  • Taste test foods before adding extra salt. Most foods already have plenty of salt.
  • Get some physical activity after dinner, like a game of basketball or football or simply taking a walk. Don’t let the cold weather get in the way of your exercise plan!
  • Don’t wait until the holidays are over and the weight is already on to set the goal of healthy eating. It is much easier to keep the weight off, than to take it off after it is already on!

Holiday eatingCheck out these tips for hosting healthy holiday parties. 

Health Observances

 CondolencesOur condolences for your loss this past month

  • Shawna Bradley (Nursing Home) for the loss of her grandmother.
  • Karol Dammann (Mental Health) for the loss of her father.
  • Sandy Cayler (Mental Health) for the loss of her brother in law.
  • Dr. McAuliff (Clinic) for the loss of his sister in law.
  • Megan Swanson (Nursing Home) for the loss of her grandmother.
  • Julie Shirbroun (Pharmacy) for the loss of her father.
  • Kenzie Wittrock (Rehab Services) for the loss of her grandfather.
  • Journey Stork (Hospice) for the loss of her grandfather in law.

A Child is Born

CareersLet's add to our team and refer our friends to job listings.

St. Anthony is one of the largest employers in the Carroll area with more than 700 skilled and dedicated staff. YOU can help add to our team by forwarding the careers link to others who may be a good fit. Thank you!

View Job Openings

Happy Birthday

Best wishes to our co-workers who celebrate their special day this month. Click here for the full list. 

St. Anthony Foundation News

Because of your generous donations, this year’s employee campaign, Saving Lives, is HALF WAY to our goal! We hope to raise enough to purchase 2 LUCAS devices to be used in cardiac arrest situations to provide a better outcome for our patients. As of November 30th, 120 employees have given just over $20,000! Additionally, our employees have given over $4,800 towards our SOS fund and more than $3,000 to Hospice. Did you know if each employee gave $56 or $2.14 per pay period, we could fund both LUCAS devices? If you haven’t returned your form, it’s not too late. Information can be found on our website at or call or stop in the Foundation offices on the 4th floor of the surgery center. Prize drawings will be held by the middle of December so get your donation in soon to be entered!

Saving Lives

December is Safe Toys and Gifts Month (Naturally)toys

December is Safe Toys and Gifts Month, the biggest gift-giving month in the world. It's imperative that we keep "safety" on the brain as we shop for our little loved ones.

Safety Guidelines When Giving:

  • Inspect all toys before purchasing.
  • Choose toys that may appeal to different senses when purchasing for a child with special needs.
  • Check the age to make sure the toy selected is appropriate.
  • Keep kids safe from lead in toys.
  • Do not give toys with small parts to young children.
  • Do not give toys with ropes, cords, or heating elements to young children.
  • Do not give crayons and markers unless they are labeled "nontoxic".

Check out more safety tips at Child & Family Services "December is National Safe Toys and Gifts Month".

Did You KnowWhat is the difference between total bed count, staffed bed count, and average daily census?

The total bed count should be reported as the hospital’s total bed capacity, as authorized by the hospital’s certificate of need (CON). This number may exceed the number of beds physically located at the hospital.

The staffed bed count is the number of beds currently available to treat patients, given the normal number of staff members on duty. The staffed bed count may not be the same number as the total bed count, as hospitals often only utilize a fraction of the beds authorized by their CON.

The staffed bed count should include beds with a staff member available to provide care to the patient, on an average day. The staffed bed count should only include the number of beds with a staff member available without resorting to bringing in additional staff members.

The average daily census is the total number of patients at the hospital, on an average day. The number does not include any patients who live in a hospital owned long-term care facility.

Check out these other fast facts about US hospitals.


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In addition,  HealthView is published quarterly with various educational and informational topics. 

Laughter is the best medicine      Doctor, I feel funny! 

Then I said

If you have items to submit for The PULSE, please contact Ali Bauer, Paula Lambertz, or Stacey Vonnahme. Thank you.
Published on the First Friday of each month