Swedish emergency room services to relocate July 14

July 12, 2011

Swedish Medical Center administrators and physicians plan to transfer emergency room services from the standalone facility near Lake Sammamish to Swedish/Issaquah early July 14.

The relocation is poised to unfold in a careful choreography as the initial phase of the hospital opens to patients. Dispatchers plan to direct ambulances to the hospital ER in the Issaquah Highlands starting at midnight.

“We’re doing this transition in the middle of the night because that is our lull point. Typically, the lowest census in any emergency department is that kind of 3-4 a.m. range,” said Dr. John Milne, a Swedish emergency physician and Issaquah resident. “Most sane people are asleep.”

The portion of the hospital for inpatients does not come online until November.

Jeff Griffin, Eastside Fire & Rescue deputy chief of operations, said agency administrators continue to update ambulance crews about the change. EFR emergency crews also toured the Swedish/Issaquah ER to prepare for the transition.

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Childbirth center offers ‘welcoming, homelike atmosphere’

July 5, 2011

Little fingers and little toes will soon be a common sight at Swedish/Issaquah hospital.

The new childbirth center will have eight labor, delivery and recovery rooms, each with its own Jacuzzi and foldout couch for napping partners.

Two operating rooms are available in the labor, delivery and recovery section in case the mother needs a Caesarean section.

Once a baby is born, the mother and infant will be taken across the window-filled hallway to the postpartum unit, where she and her partner will learn about baby behavior, such as feeding cues, and have the opportunity to ask nurses questions about the newest member of the family.

Having a childbirth center is integral to any hospital, according to Penny Simkin, physical therapist, doula, Seattle childbirth educator and author.

“I think that from a business point of view it makes a lot of sense for a hospital to have a birthing center,” Simkin said. “It’s the first association that healthy young people have with a hospital when they’re giving birth, and if it’s a positive experience they’ll go back there in other realms.”

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Buy (nearly) all you need at Goodwill for a year

May 31, 2011

Beautiful Existence, with her son Epic, is trying to buy almost everything she uses from Goodwill for a year. Contributed

A local resident has taken up a unique challenge this year: to shop only at Goodwill for everything she needs — except for things like food, hygiene items and prescriptions.

Beautiful Existence is what she calls herself, a representation of her life and dedication to humanity design, according to her blog. Her motivation for the challenge came from a childhood of shopping at thrift stores and learning to live in an environmentally friendly way. She grew up on a farm in Olympia, where she says her parents taught her the importance of conservation and living frugally.

“I was actually in a thrift store with my mom last year and I thought, ‘OK, all these people do all these challenges. I wonder if I could buy from a thrift store all year?’” she said.

She started her blog and garnered some unexpected media attention, boosting her followers from 75 to 200-plus followers a day, most of whom leave comments on the site thanking her for the inspiration.

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Gold Star

April 19, 2011

Students raise funds for Seattle Children’s

Kim Bussing and Kaileen Dougherty

For the past three years, two Issaquah High School juniors, Kim Bussing and Kaileen Dougherty, have raised funds for Seattle Children’s, collecting about $3,000.

The duo raised money this year by selling concessions at Destination Imagination, an annual education event where children competed in science, drama and other creative contests March 5 at Pacific Cascade Middle School.

This year, the girls raised more than $1,000.

“Both Kaileen and I are very passionate about supporting our community, and both of us had health scares after we were born,” Bussing said. “We want to be able to give back to Seattle Children’s and also be able to help give other children the chances we’ve been able to have.”

Families organize Issaquah run to help boy battling rare disease

April 14, 2011

NEW — 1 p.m. April 14, 2011

Calvin Bertsch

Families in the neighborhoods along the southern shore of Lake Sammamish plan to gather Sunday for the Calvin Bertsch Rainbow Fun Run, to honor the life of a 3-year-old boy bravely battling mitochondrial disease.

The 1.67-mile family run starts at 3 p.m. at Meerwood Park, 4703 192nd Ave. S.E., rain or shine. Organizers recommend donations of $10 per person or $25 per family in order to offset the family’s mounting medical bills.

Participants can preregister, donate at the run or mail tax-deductible donations to IMPACT, c/o Matt Wimmer, 4708 193rd Place S.E., Issaquah, WA 98027. IMPACT is a nonprofit organization.

Calvin arrived Nov. 19, 2007 — almost seven weeks earlier than the expected due date.

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Gold Star

April 5, 2011

Key Club goes extra mile

For her 17th birthday, Issaquah High School Key Club President Kaileen Dougherty celebrated by helping others.

She and more than 100 Key Club members made Valentine’s Day cards for Seattle Children’s and made two banners that read “IHS Key Club Loves You!” that she and student Aaron Tham delivered to Aegis Living and Regency Newcastle.

Key Club members who helped with the project received a piece of homemade birthday cake. Seattle Children’s staff had nothing but positive anecdotes about children in hospital beds thrilled to know that some “high school kid” was thinking about them, Dougherty said.

Gold Star

March 15, 2011

Students collect 7,500 crayons

Cougar Ridge Elementary School students

The students at Cougar Ridge Elementary School have collected 7,500 crayons for the patients at Seattle Children’s.

By working with parent advisers Kavita Hegde and Jennifer Goldberg, students used goal-setting strategies, marking skills and leadership talents to put together the crayon drive. Their business acumen paid off, with the students collecting the 7,500 crayons in less than a month, from Jan. 19 to Feb. 28.

Children’s uses more than 100,000 crayons each year. Efforts like those made by the Cougar Ridge Student Council help the hospital offset the cost of purchasing crayons and allow those funds to be used for more immediate needs, such as uncompensated care.

Raise the Dough for Seattle Children’s

March 8, 2011

Diners looking for a savory or sweet treat can get both and help sick children at the Hope on the Hill guild’s second annual fundraiser in the Issaquah Highlands on March 22.

Mark Mullet’s two franchises — Zeeks Pizza and Ben & Jerry’s — will donate 20 percent of the day’s sales, including take out and delivery, to uncompensated care at Seattle Children’s.

Last year, before Mullet opened Ben & Jerry’s, the fundraiser raised $1,200 for the hospital at Zeeks. This year, the guild has a goal of raising at least $1,500, Hope on the Hill event chair Amy Trenary said.

In 2010, the hospital provided more than $100 million in uncompensated care to families in need.

“We want all kids to be able to have access to the best health care possible, regardless of their family’s ability to pay,” Trenary said.

The guild started in 2009 and has collected money and toys for Seattle Children’s through a variety of ways, including the Tea for Hope auction.

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Leaders of tomorrow are taking charge today

February 22, 2011

You don’t need to look far to see the impact of Issaquah teens’ service projects.

By Iman Baghai

Beaver Lake Middle School’s annual South African Humanitarian Project, a youth-run initiative, raises truckloads of school supplies for African orphanages each year.

Skyline High School’s Katie Mincin recently organized an Invisible Children Awareness Week that earned more than $4,000 in donations for the global nonprofit.

Beat writer Kim Bussing and classmate Kaileen Dougherty, of Issaquah High School, are holding a Destination Imagination event March 5 at the Pacific Cascade Freshmen Campus, where younger kids have the chance to participate in science fair type activities, acting and the arts.

Last year, Bussing and Dougherty raised $900 for Haiti by selling concessions at the event. This year, they plan to donate the earnings to Seattle Children’s.

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Cody Habben finds success on UW line

February 8, 2011

Cody Habben

Football may rank among Cody Habben’s top priorities, but family always comes first.

“That’s one of the things we’re proud of,” Mike Habben said of his son. “Both our boys understand what family means.”

“We’re very close,” Habben added.

The family is so tight-knit, in fact, that when the 6-foot-6, 290-pound offensive tackle for the University of Washington capped off his 2010 season with a Holiday Bowl victory against Nebraska, many of his family members were there to celebrate.

“We had over 20 people fly out from the Midwest to watch the game,” Mike Habben said.

Regardless of continuous family support, getting to a Holiday Bowl during his senior year, which Habben described as an “ultimate high,” was a process.

Along with his older brother Zach, the former all-state lineman at Skyline High School began his involvement with sports at a young age.

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