Prowers County Commissioners Work Session March 19, 2024


Pete Hernandez, Director of the Prowers County Consolidated Return Mail Center and Overflow Processing Center in Granada, updated the Commissioners on the new shift work at the centers.  Employees are working 4 or 5 day per week shifts to enable the departments to be open their contracted 7 am – 6 pm hours and he reports employees seem happy with the available shift hours.

Brooke Matthew, CSU Extension SE Region Director and Prowers County Agronomist Michaela Mattes spoke about programs the county offers, including workshops on raised garden beds & pesticide recertification classes.  Ms. Matthew talked about an upcoming Family Day in May where kids will cook for their families as part of the Hope Center’s cooking class plan.  She also reported that recent Holiday Camps in Lamar and Holly had a large number of attendees for both locations, where the kids learned about all that 4-H has to offer while cooking, making crafts, sewing, learning about robotics, and more.  There is an upcoming Ag Fest on April 21 at the LCC gymnasium, which approximately 200 fifth-grade students from 9 area schools will attend.

Greg Ausmus from the Lamar Ministerial Alliance gave an update on the program and its finances.  A discussion among the Board consisted of how to get word out to the public of the importance of the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle donations and how 90% of what they get donated to them goes to worthy programs, such as the Ministerial Alliance so that it can continue its good work for our community.  Donations to the Alliance are always welcome and much needed.

Dr. Claire Reed, High Plains Community Health Center CMO told the commissioners about their Behavioral Health program and how rapidly it has expanded.  The program does assessments on persons who may be suicidal as well as many who are just overwhelmed in their lives currently.  The facility has hired a 24-hour answering service that can be reached by calling the main number after hours. Patients will be able to schedule appointments, request prescription refills, and speak with triage nurses.  The facility is working to acquire more providers.

Karen Bryant, CEO of Prowers Medical Center announced that the hospital now has 2 full-time general surgeons on staff, on a rotating schedule of two weeks on and two weeks off.  They are Jeff Johnson, MD and Ernest Steinle, MD.  The hospital’s Sterile Processing remodel is beginning and will be performed in 4 stages.  It will be an 8-month project and they are hoping to be able to keep the OR open during the process.  She also told the Board that the hospital’s Orthopedics department has been “growing like crazy” and that Dr. Ryan Carr, Orthopedic Surgeon, is adding his hours of availability and would like to be able to be available every Monday of each month very soon.

By Barbara Crimond

Filed Under: CountyFeaturedHealth


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