A renewed Greene County Health System…Part 2

By Mynecia D. Steele

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Greene County Residential Care Center residents socialize as they enjoy a balanced meal prepared by the cafeteria staff.

The Greene County Health System (GCHS) believes in reaching out to the community, says CEO, Elmore Patterson. “We are encouraging people to come to the Greene County Health System through campaigns, billboards, posters and our website,” Patterson stated.
GCHS hosts free semi-annual health fairs. These fairs are held with the intention of educating the public on health information, benefits and services that are available to them. These events are open to all, Greene County and surrounding communities alike.

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Monthly health screenings are also provided throughout the county along with diabetes classes. Many Greene County residents suffer with high blood pressure and diabetes.
Town Hall meetings are held on a quarterly bases sponsored by the Greene County Health System. These meetings allow the community to voice their opinions and bring any concerns or thoughts to the attention of the GCHS.
Patterson shared that the Greene County Health System also started the “I am Greene because . . .” campaign to give the community a chance to show their support for the health system.  One poster features Thom Smith, who says, “I am Greene because GCH saved me from a massive stroke.”
Last year, the GCHS hosted A Day of Service in Branch Heights. As a result of this service project, every child in the Branch Heights community received eye checks and general physicals before the start of the school term.
GCHS also provides meals to the elderly every November.
The Greene County Health System hopes to make its mark on Greene County.  It strives to continue working with the community and informing them about health care and health disparities affecting African Americans in most rural areas.
GCHS provides the only hospital in Greene County, therefore, it becomes the safety net hospital, said Patterson. This means that the GCHS must provide care for people who have no money, or limited resources.  Many Greene County citizens do not have healthcare. The GCHS must provide for them with no profit in return.
“The county’s health status is lacking because the state of Alabama did not expand Medicaid,” Patterson said. “We care for about 1.2 million dollars of uncompensated healthcare.  The community must work together to help with those uncompensated people,” said Patterson.
He expressed appreciation to Greenetrack, Inc. and the sheriff’s department for the help they have provided recently.
The Greene County Health System is directing more people into its primary care. By visiting a primary care center, patients have the opportunity to build a relationship with a care provider whom they can follow up with regularly.
Patients who visit primary care are also more likely to take their medication, and less likely to come into the emergency room for non-emergency services.
The Greene County Health System plans to expand by setting up a primary care clinic in Boligee.
Many people don’t realize that the Greene County Hospital is the closest emergency room in the West corridor of Alabama on I-20, which leads into Mississippi.  Therefore, the Greene County Health System cares for many motor vehicle accident victims.
If outside people are willing to put their lives in the hands of the Greene County Health System, GCHS team hopes that the citizens of Greene County will also give them a chance.
“The only way you’re going to know if its good or bad, is trying it.” Patterson said. “Trying it for yourself; not going off of a rumor. We have to get past that.  GCHS is ours. We should use the facilities and support them as well,” he emphasized.

GCHS Chapter of National Honor Society inducts 14 students

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The Eunice R. Outland Chapter of the National Honor Society of Greene County High School inducted 14 students at its ceremony held Friday, March 11, 2016 in the GCHS gymnasium. The 2015-2016 Inductees included Yasmeen Amerson, Delorine Brown, Zakia Coleman, Tukiya Cunningham, Keyonna Dixon, Sabrina French, Jameria Hood, Victoria Hood, Leterria Hutton, Anthony McGee, Lauren Smith, Christopher Stepney, Kwanza Watkins and Jasmine Williams.
GCHS Principal Gary Rice opened the program and invited Interim Superintendent Dr. James H. Carter to bring greetings.
Ollivara Hutton, current President of the GCHS Chapter of NHS, served as Mistress of Ceremony.  Other program participants included Greene County High School choir and band and Posting of Colors by the JROTC.  Amber French gave the mediation and the welcome and history of NHS were presented by Amber Woods and Michael Winn respectively.  Tyra Hutton and Destini Jackson gave the history of the chapter’s name.  N’Khala Richardson presented the student speakers.  Words of Encouragement were shared by Ashley Taylor, Denzel Davis, and Chelsey Davis. Lighting of the Candles representing the Principles of the NHS were presented as follows:  Lauren Smith, Knowledge of Honor; Christopher Stepney, Character; Delorine Brown, Scholarship; Zakia Coleman, Leadership; and Tukiya Cunningham, Service.  Mr. Alphonzo Morton, III led the inductees in the recitation of the pledge.
School Board President, Mr. Leo Branch, gave congratulatory comments before the close of the program.
Current officers of the GCHS Chapter of NHS are: President, Ollivara Hutton; Vice President, Ashley Taylor; Secretary, Tyra Hutton; Treasurer, Denzel Davis; Parliamentarian Michael Winn; and Historian, Destini Jackson. Other members include Nnambi Coleman, Chelsey Davis, Brittany Deloatch, Amber French, Raven Gilliam, Sara Hawkins, Jeremy Mobley, N’khala Richardson and Amber Woods.
The Faculty Council include Lillian Lewis, Advisor; Alphonzo Morton, III, Co-Advisor; Ruby Bell, Halven Carodine, Angela Harkness, Tonia Sparks and Tamika Thompson.

GCHS Greene Team honors volunteers at luncheon

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The Greene Team, local volunteers who devote time and treasure to the Greene County Health System, recognized their members’ contributions at an Annual Volunteers Luncheon held Tuesday, May 31, 2016 at Ruby’s in Eutaw. The luncheon featured presentations on Domestic Violence Awareness by Sheriff Jonathan Benison and Deputy Sheriff Lt. Jeremy Rancher.
The Greene Team was organized in 2010 and currently has 39 active members who contributed 2,766.5 volunteer hours to the GCHS from October 2015 to date.In addition to serving as receptionists and advocates for positive community relations, the Greene Team also raises funds for special projects to benefit the Greene County Health Systems, including purchasing visitors’ sleeping cots and TV’s for hospital rooms, personal items for residents of the nursing home and more. The Greene Team volunteers are local individuals, mainly retirees, who choose to give more to their community through the GCHS.
Mrs. Jeanetta Hall serves as president and Mrs. Melruth Carter as secretary. Mrs. Geraldine Walton was mistress of ceremony at the luncheon