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Power Outages

power+outage2While the meteorologist can make predictions, we don’t know for sure what Mother Nature may bring.  With that in mind, it is important to understand that a power outage can occur any time or anywhere.  Here are some tips that you can use to prepare for a power outage, as well as what to do during one.




  • Fill plastic containers with water and put them in the refrigerator and freezer to take up empty space.  The chilled water will help the refrigerator or freezer stay cold longer.
  • Medications requiring refrigeration can be kept in a closed refrigerator for several hours, you can verify how long with your practitioner or pharmacist.
  • Remember gas stations rely on electricity to power their pumps, so it is a good idea to keep your car’s tank at least half full.
  • Know how to use the release for your electric garage door opener, and if the door is heavy, you may want help lifting it.
  • Keep a spare key to your home with you if your primary way to get into your house is through the garage.
  • Use flashlights for emergency lighting.  Do not risk a fire by using candles.
  • Keep freezers and refrigerators closed to keep food as fresh as possible.
  • Turn off or disconnect appliances and electronics to prevent damage from power surges when the power does come back on.
  • If you have a generator, be sure it was installed by a qualified electrician and do not run it in the home or garage, or near windows or doors.
  • Keep up-to-date by listening to a battery operated radio.
  • Leave one light on so that you know when the power has returned.
  • Have a telephone that does not require electricity to operate.
  • Do not call 9-1-1 for information; this is only for life-threatening emergencies.
  • If it is cold out, keep warm by putting on layers of warm clothing; consider going somewhere where the heat is working.   If it is warm out, wear light clothing and consider going somewhere where the AC is working to cool off.
  • Do not travel unless it is necessary; remember traffic signals may not be working.

Here are some links to websites with helpful information:

The American Red Cross

No Measles Cases in Shelby County

No Measles Cases in Shelby County

The United States is currently experiencing a large, multi-state outbreak of measles. More than 100 people from 14 states have been confirmed as having measles. As of February 6, 2015, there are no confirmed measles cases in Shelby County or in Iowa.    

“This national measles outbreak has brought the protection provided by vaccinations back into the spotlight,” said Shelby County Public Health Director and Nurse Practitioner Calla Poldberg. “It’s always important to keep your vaccinations up-to-date, but during times like this, when we know a virus is actively circulating, it’s especially important to check with your health care provider to be sure you and your family’s vaccinations are current.” The best way to prevent measles is to get the measles-mumps-rubella shot (known as MMR). Two doses of MMR will provide more than 99 percent of people lifelong protection against measles.

Two doses of MMR are required for elementary and secondary school entry in Iowa. Shelby County school-aged kids are well-vaccinated with over 99.9% of students receiving two doses of MMR vaccine. The first dose of MMR should be given at 12 months of age and the second dose can be administered as soon as 28 days later; however, the second dose is usually administered as part of the kindergarten shots given between 4-6 years of age. Generally, persons who started elementary school in Iowa after 1991 and were up-to-date on all school entry vaccine requirements have received two doses of MMR vaccine.

It is recommended that adults born in 1957 or later receive at least one dose of MMR vaccine, or have a laboratory test proving that they are immune and are protected. It is assumed that persons born in the U.S. prior to 1957 were likely infected with the measles virus and therefore have presumptive immunity. In addition, two doses of MMR is recommended for adults of all ages who work or volunteer in health care facilities, travel internationally, or are students in a post-secondary institution, if they do not have laboratory proof of immunity.

Giving vaccines to those who may have already had measles or may have already received the recommended vaccination is not harmful; it only boosts immunity. Therefore, if someone is unable to verify prior vaccination or history of illness, the easiest, quickest and most appropriate thing to do is to vaccinate the individual.

Measles is contagious to others before symptoms start.  Measles starts with a high fever. Soon after, it causes a cough, runny nose, and red eyes. Three to seven days after the fever, a rash of tiny, red spots breaks out. It usually starts at the head and spreads to the rest of the body. The rash can last for a week, and coughing can last for 10 days.  Complications from measles can be very serious.

You can learn more about measles by calling Shelby County Public Health at 712-755-4422 or your local medical provider or visit


January is Cervical Health Awareness Month, and HCCMS Family Planning wants you to know that there are ways to stop cervical cancer.  HPV (human papillomavirus) is the major cause of cervical and some other cancers. About 79 million Americans currently have HPV, which is sexually transmitted. Most people that have HPV don’t know that they are infected. Each year about 4,000 women die of cervical cancer, which is preventable.

Cervical cancer can be prevented by early detection with regular screenings called Pap tests, and follow-up care if needed. HCCMS Family Planning encourages women to start getting regular Pap tests at age 21.

Gardasil is a vaccine that prevents cervical and some other cancers. It is given in three doses to both males and females starting as early as age 11. Women can get Gardasil vaccine until they are 27 years old and men can get it if they are under 22.

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, you may be able to get a Pap test and Gardasil vaccine at no cost to you. Check with your insurance company.  Uninsured women 40-

64 may be able to qualify for free Paps and exams through enrollment in the “Care for Yourself” program.

Call Rachel Birks RN at 755-4312 for more information on cervical cancer, the Gardasil vaccine or the Care for Yourself program.

For more information, contact Calla Poldberg ARNP @ 755-4423

Make “Resolve to be Ready” part of your 2015 New Year’s Resolutions.


The “Resolve to be Ready” campaign was developed by the federal Department of Homeland Security, which is partnering with FEMA’s Citizen Corps Program to encourage individuals, families, businesses, and other organizations to get a kit, make a plan, and be informed.  There are many things that you can do before disaster strikes.  Here are some resources:





Register to volunteer with i-SERV at

Build a Disaster Kit:

Here’s a fun video:

Download Preparedness Apps:

Widespread Influenza Levels in Iowa

After weeks of low to moderate influenza levels in Iowa, the Iowa Department of Public Health reports statewide surveillance indicates flu activity is increasing. The flu season typically peaks in February and can last as late as May. The most current surveillance shows cases of influenza have been confirmed by the State Hygienic Lab in every region of the state and the geographic reach of influenza is now categorized as ‘widespread,’ the highest level. In the last reporting week, the Iowa Influenza Surveillance Network indicated 130 influenza-related hospitalizations, mostly among those aged 64 or greater. Several flu outbreaks have been reported in long-term care facilities, especially in central and western Iowa. The most common flu virus circulating is the influenza A (H3N2) strain, although four different strains have been identified. In years when A (H3N2) viruses dominate, the flu season tends to be more severe with more hospitalizations and deaths. Based upon CDC’s national estimates, an average of 300,000 Iowans get the flu every year and together, flu and its complication of pneumonia cause an average of 1,000 deaths yearly in Iowa. Officials say the flu vaccine is the best defense against getting influenza; however, because some of the A (H3N2) viruses may only be partially covered in the vaccine, it’s even more important to take personal actions to help prevent the spread of illness. Remember the 3-Cs: Cover your coughs and sneezes; Clean your hands frequently; and Contain germs by staying home when ill. Anti-viral medications are an important second line of defense to treat the flu in persons at highest risk of developing more severe illness. Anti-viral medications can make flu illness shorter and reduce the risk of ending up in the hospital or dying from influenza. Antivirals work best if started within 48 hours or sooner of when flu symptoms begin. The flu is a respiratory illness caused by viruses. The flu comes on suddenly and symptoms may include fever, headache, tiredness, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, and body aches. Illness typically lasts two to seven days. Influenza may cause severe illness or even death in people such as the very young or very old, or those who have underlying health conditions. (The “stomach bug” which causes diarrhea and vomiting is not caused by the influenza virus but usually by norovirus; thus, the flu vaccine will not protect you against this illness.) Influenza is not a ‘reportable disease’ in Iowa, which means doctors are not required to notify IDPH each time a patient tests positive for influenza; however, IDPH conducts year-round influenza surveillance through the Iowa Influenza Surveillance Network. This surveillance indicates what types of influenza viruses are circulating and how widespread influenza illness is.


Marketing 001Diagnostic Imaging, formerly known as Radiology, has an advanced ultrasound unit which includes state of the art technology with the ability to perform arterial renal, liver, and extremities. The machine provides improved image quality and in most cases a quicker exam. We are proud to offer this exam option in our facility while providing high quality customer service to our community.





The Diagnostic Imaging department is staffed 7:00am-7:00pm Monday-Friday to perform a wide range of studies that include:

Ultrasounds | Computed Tomography Scans (CT) | Diagnostic X-ray | Digital Mammography | Biopsies | Bone Densitometry

Radiologic technologists, ultrasonographers, and a receptionist are available during this time. An on-call x-ray technologist is available from 7pm to 7am Monday-Friday and weekend hours for emergency testing and inpatient care.

Mobile services that come to Myrtue Medical Center for the convenience of our patients include:

•      Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI-3 days a week)
•      Nuclear medicine
•      Stereotactic breast biopsy
•      PET/CT

Committed to you ….Committed to our Community…..Committed to Healthcare

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