Grand Forks Public Health Department

Thursday, October 15, 2009


The meeting was called to order at approximately 12:15 p.m. by Don Shields.

Those Members Present: Don Shields, Bobby Vogel, Dawne Barwin, Kate Kenna, Gretchen Graf, Lee Lipp, Julie Anderson, Jody Thompson, Keith Berger, Jon Green, and Mary Amundson. Others present: Keith Westerfield (Public Health).


1. Review and Approval of Minutes of July 16, 2009 Meeting:
Minutes were reviewed and approved with no changes.

2. Grand Forks “Detox” Community Facility Initiative Update – Kate Kenna, Northeast Human Service Center (NEHSC).

- Last meeting was called by the Mayor’s office and Public Health, and there was more interest from the parties involved this time around. Kate felt it was moving forward. It seems to be within $100,000 of a solution.

- There doesn’t seem to be as much community resistance as there was few years ago when this project first got started.

- Fargo’s Detox Center has had 300 cases a month (double last previous year). Approximately 600 social detox cases a year would be expected (with some more than once) in Grand Forks.

- The different types of possible funding were discussed.

- Julie A. thanked Kate for taking on this task, and keeping at it.


1. Influenza A H1N1 “Swine Flu” Update: Don S. provided an update of H1N1 and handed out copies of slides on information on the H1N1 Influenza.

- H1N1 Influenza – 85% of the people in ND who contract H1N1 are under 29 years of age; and 71% are under 20 years of age. Only 5% of the people who contract H1N1 are over 50 years of age. It is a disease impacting our young.

- Jody T. said that Central had 109 students out, also Red River was hit with a high number of students out. There seems to be a spike of sick students 3-4 days after an event (such as Homecoming). Possibly looking into ‘Social Distancing’ until early December when school kids vaccinations can be completed.

- Once vaccine arrives, we would have clinics at the schools; with all staff and nurses from Public Health helping, and also Altru nurses and UND student nurses.

- Public Health’s allocation of the H1N1 vaccine had arrived last Friday, however it was only ten doses (for approximately 8,000 students) due to limited amount currently produced by the manufacturer. Public Health is looking at mid-November before having enough vaccine to vaccinate school kids, with January-February 2010 as having vaccine available to the general public.

- Manufacturers stopped shipping of the seasonal flu vaccines to concentrate their efforts on shipping the H1N1 vaccine in mid-September.

- As of October 15th, 41 out of 50 states report widespread outbreaks of the H1N1 Influenza (including North Dakota).

- Altru’s ER and Urgent Care unit has been seeing so many H1N1 and seasonal Influenza cases, that they will be opening a ‘Flu Clinic’ (to treat just patients with flu symptoms, and keep them separated from rest of the emergency cases).

Mayor’s Health and Human Services Grand Forks Cabinet Minutes
October 15, 2009
Page 2


Jon G. – Community agencies need to use care in referring sick individuals to the Third Street Clinic. The Third Street Clinic does not have a physician. They coordinate care, and people needing emergency care should go directly to Altru’s Emergency Department.

Mary A. – Partnering with the Health Education Center, that does a fabulous job of getting kids interested
in health careers, from kindergarten up to graduate program. UND’s School of Medicine and Health Sciences Center for Rural Health has an advisory board that represents the entire state. Next year,
they hope to have their next regional center up and running somewhere in the northwest or southwest section of the state. The grant for ‘Student/resident Experiences and Rotations in Community Health’ (SEARCH) program, is specific to the National Health Service Corps, and helps students learn to work
together as a team.

Lee L. – There will be an announcement concerning Developmental Homes next Friday.

Julie A. – The College of Nursing was celebrating 100 years of Nursing on the UND campus this year, with a Centennial Gala event on October 2 at the Alerus Center. Twenty years the ‘Recruitment/retention of American Indians into Nursing’ (RAIN) program has been at the UND College of Nursing, and their numbers are very high--90% of Indian students go back into their tribal areas. Also twenty years of Nursing Anesthesia program, the only school in the state with this program, with their nurses providing 90% of the anesthesia given in the state. Enrollment at the College of Nursing continues to increase.

Dawne B. – The New American Services (NAS) resettled 95 people in the community this fiscal year
(1 October, 2008 – 30 September 2009), an all-time high. Don S. mentioned that Public Health had received a grant for helping refugees to be vaccinated. Jody T. stated that the Grand Forks school system is diversified, with about 200 refugee students from 8-10 different countries (some parents came north for jobs). They are welcomed, but it does put stress on the school system.

Kate K. – Northeast Human Services held a stakeholders meeting on October 14, 2009, with about 80 people present- consumers and agencies. The information obtained is used by Northeast and the Department of Human Services to develop our strategic plan.

Gretchen G. – Children that go to foster parents usually don’t get to take anything with them, so they are in need of clothes, shoes, coats, school supplies, etc. Each church could do one item of need for foster children.

Don S. - The North Dakota Department of Health has activated a toll-free public health hotline for people to call if they have questions about influenza. The number to call is 866.207.2880. The hotline is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

V. ADJOURNMENT: The meeting adjourned at 1:05 p.m.

VI. NEXT MEETING: Thursday, January 15, 2010
12:00 noon – 1:30 p.m.
(lunch will be provided by Altru Health System)
Altru Hospital (Lower Level, Multi-Media/Board Room)

- H1N1 Influenza “Swine Flu” slides