What was deemed as The Mineral County Stakeholders meeting, a coalition of local and out- of-area professionals came together from various areas of expertise last week, including health, housing, mental health, social services and safety with an effort to develop a co-op of support in meeting the local issues and crisis situations within Mineral County.

By collaborating resources, including the support from outlining communities, it was stated that more can be accomplished in reaching the goals within each county. Solutions can be discussed as suggestions are shared. Receiving answers toward achieving a general improvement facing any rural community includes relying upon an outside network. Resources are limited, so learning how other counties are succeeding within their struggles presented a foundation for everyone present.

“This is all about creating healthy communities. I appreciate the transparency of sharing with others from surrounding rural communities, so we can achieve success together and set realistic goals of our own,” Community Health Nurse Wanda Nixon shared.

This month’s speaker was Blayne Osborn from the Nevada Rural Hospital Partners in Reno and Mount Grant Hospital’s Administrator, Hugh Qualls, sharing an upcoming program involving Community Para-medicine, being initiated within Mineral County. By utilizing a mobile integrated healthcare method, combined with the existing professionals in place, there can be a possible cost saving to the current emergency room experience as a preventative measure is created. This program has proven success in other areas and the effort to address the highest health concerns will include prevention and early oversight.

The idea of providing a community para-medicine, home health access person is that a specific plan of effective help can be achieved, as well as monitoring and educating patients without a hospital intake being necessary in many cases. This position is not an Emergency Tech position, nor will it interfere with an immediate critical care situation, but it does fill the gap in-between. As a wrap-around service, evaluations, assessments, prevention and medication compliance issues can be addressed early. Follow-up care after hospitalization may be part of the program, as well as home safety and general health assistance.

“Our goal is to better our programs and services and Charlie Mann is perfect for this position,” Qualls expressed.

Speaking on behalf of the program, as the newly hired community para-health professional, Mann spoke of his ten-year involvement in Mineral County, working as an Emergency Medical Technician, then his 30-year involvement within community clinical settings.

“I know this community as an EMS bum and frontier Nevada is a unique opportunity to provide this in-home health setting. Washington D.C. doesn’t always understand rural medicine or how spread out we are if a trauma assistance or chronic illness occurs. We have travel limitations and restrictions on what can be done, so this tie-in to care makes sense in our community area,” Mann shared.

As directors shared from their own expertise and addressed a network of issues, a discussion regarding safe, local housing was considered a high concern in Mineral County, as various local professionals weighted in on the topic. The effort of addressing the housing needs of seniors to low-cost housing and basic safety codes and ordinances being properly enforced brought about a discussion that agencies need to come together in a collaboration of concern and resources to correct this county issue.

The Healthy Communities Coalition meets according to scheduling set forth by the counties committee. For further information, contact the CHN, Wanda Nixon at 775-945-3657 or email at wnixon@health.nv.gov.