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Old 09-14-2018, 04:10 PM
Newton Daily News Newton Daily News is offline
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Default A year-in-review

From updating its mission statement and adding two new board members to moving locations and adding services, the Jasper County Health Department had a busy year. Administrator Becky Pryor shared the department’s Fiscal Year 2018 annual report to the Jasper County Board of Health at its monthly meeting Thursday.

“We had some changes throughout the year,” Pryor said. “I feel really good about our staff right now. We have cross-training between the three nurses and we can pretty much cross train to do anything. It is getting to the point where we aren’t all new, we are getting more seasoned with our position.”

To start, Pryor went over the department’s budget which came in $110,725 under the projected total. By division, public health was responsible for $385,487, home care came in at $508,966 and environment health used $163,789.

Among the goals the board and department set, Pryor reported all programs now have electronic records and Quick Books has been implemented for department accounting. Completed but continually ongoing goals include JCHD moved to its new location at 116 W. Fourth St. S. and train and cross train the new nurses and office staff. JCHD also had four students intern throughout the year contributing 435 hours of work.

In June, the board of health celebrated 50 years in Jasper County with an open house. Pryor said they had also updated the history of the board and the department to be used moving forward.

Two new members joined the board including Jasper County Supervisor Joe Brock and Dr. Andrew Cope. They replace Dr. Stephanie Bantell who moved and Jackie Sparks who retired.

Protecting and improving the health of Jasper County was set as the new mission statement for the county while the vision statement works toward having healthy resident and communities in Jasper County.

For public health, coordinator Kristina Winfield worked on gaining a presence on social media and in the newspaper through daily posts and articles. She also moved forward with grant opportunities including walkability, First Books and Decategorization and participated in multiple health fairs and training sessions.

“We were really shocked. When we started looking at the reach we had (on social media) it was 2.8 million times people were reached throughout the year,” Pryor said.

Home Care maintained a steady workload of about 102 clients on average. In total, the aides served 143 unduplicated clients for 7,665 hours and 4,898 visits. With the retirement or departure of several aides, three new aides were hired throughout the year.

“Everyone is trained and up and going,” Pryor said.

Kevin Luetters, environmental health director, had another busy year with 197 septic evaluations and inspections and 52 plugged water wells. He also completed 17 water tests, inspected 13 pools and spas and 11 each tanning and tattoo establishments.

“He is really running all over the county a lot of the time to try to get it all done,” Pryor said.

Pryor said overall she feels good about where the department started and where it is at now.

“You never know what we are going to be doing,” Pryor said. “Not only is our staff wonderful but our community partners … everyone just says yes around us a lot. It is really encouraging.”

Contact Jamee A. Pierson at 641-792-3121 ext. 6534 or

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