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Even before hospitals in Ely and Grand Marais stopped delivering babies except in emergency circumstances, use of their facilities for obstetrics was declining. Nonetheless, the loss of the services is dismaying to those it affects the most — women who now have to travel from one hour to 2½ hours or more to give birth in a hospital setting. Those were among the findings of a study presented on Friday at the Annette L. Boman Memorial Medical Student Research Symposium on the Duluth campus of the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Docs paid best in Dakotas You're a beginning doctor, and you want to pay off those massive student loan debts as quickly as possible? Head west — but not too far west. In a report issued last week, Medscape found that the state with the highest average pay for physicians in 2017 is North Dakota ($361,000), followed by South Dakota ($354,000) and then Nebraska ($346,000). It's all about supply and demand, according to Medscape. States with the most acute shortages of doctors offer the best pay.
When people suggest to Kevin Rodlund that his job must be depressing, he disagrees. "It's not sad," Rodlund said. "There's a lot of smiles and jokes up here at Solvay." That would be Solvay Hospice House, a homelike building on wooded property in Duluth Heights where residents may be infants or very old, male or female, rich or poor — but all, at least in the opinion of their doctors, are in the very last stages of life. For the past couple of years, Rodlund has been nurse manager at Solvay, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary.
Author David Kessler will be featured speaker at an April 20 event to mark the 10th anniversary of the Solvay Hospice House and the kickoff of a drive to create a $2 million endowment for the facility's patients. Kessler's first book, "The Needs of the Dying," won praise from Mother Teresa, according to his website, and he co-wrote two book with psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, who pioneered the concept of the five stages of grief.
Walking advocates gather A six-person team from Duluth is in Georgia this week, for pedestrian purposes. Led by Josh Gorham, a St. Louis County public health nurse, the six are attending the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors' 2017 Walkability Action Institute in Decatur, according to a St. Louis County news release. The focus is on improving the transportation system for those who rely on walking to get around, Gorham said in a news release. It noted that:
The temperature on Park Point on Friday afternoon was 41. At the same time in Charleston, S.C., it was 86. "Wonderful," drawled Sandra Troy, when she heard the news. Troy, 75, wearing a jacket over a sweatshirt, was spending her last full day in a room at Bayshore Residence and Rehabilitation Center on Park Point, her home since being transferred from St. Luke's hospital on Feb. 3.
Drug overdoses are contributing to a disturbing increase in premature deaths nationwide, according to an annual county-by-county report released today. Authors of the 2017 County Health Rankings Report, which uses the most recent available data, define a premature death as any death from any cause before the age of 75. The rate consists of the years of potential life lost in a county per 100,000 population. In St. Louis County, for instance, that rate was 6,500 in 2015; in Douglas County it was 6,700. Both are higher than the average for their respective states.
A 'nurse' in your artery Heart failure patients at Essentia Health have a new option for monitoring blood pressure changes. The CardioMEMs sensor was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 2013 and has been implanted in three Essentia patients since January, according to a news release from the health system.
According to the Cystinosis Research Foundation, cystinosis is a metabolic disease in which an amino acid called cystine gets into cells but has no transporter out. The trapped cystine forms crystals that destroy the cells, and that goes on to slowly destroy the body's organs, including kidneys, liver, eyes, muscles and the brain.
Identical twins Jana and Sara Healy share more than petite builds, reddish-blond hair, a love of artistic expression and careers as cooks. The 33-year-old sisters also share an organ-destroying disease that they have in common with only about 500 people in the United States. It's a lonely thing to share.