Madison Memorial Hospital

“I Give My Short Stay an A+++”

Craig Miller

“I Give My Short Stay an A+++”

Several days into our annual snowmobile trip on March 7th, I was riding my snowmobile with a group of friends near Shotgun in Island Park area. Along the way I climbed and then descended a rather shear hill face apparently with a bit too much speed no realizing the steep downhill angle I had to negotiate. While I remember the ascent up the hill, the next memory I have is of two friends removing my helmet and asking me to lay still. I recall the very concerned face of my friend Janet who is a seasoned snowmobile rider of many years. I’m in my 3rd year of learning to ride.

Obviously, I had sustained a loss of consciousness that lasted around 2 minutes. My snowmobile was on its side next to me. I estimate the height of the hill at 25 feet. While I was with seven other riders, none were in direct observation of my accident. Some saw parts of it but nobody saw the whole event. Due to a lack of memory of the landing, I don’t know exactly what the mechanism of injury was. I suspect I was thrown out and away from the machine landing hard on compact snow. This was essentially a high velocity fall from a height. Examination of my helmet and clothing shows no evidence that I tangled with the machine but it is possible. My friends found me lying like a rag doll on my left side, left arm at an odd angle, moaning incoherently not responding to verbal stimuli. Soon, however, I became aware and oriented. Janet said that my first question was “where is my sled?” I had indeed been knocked out. My vision was full of sparkles for 10 minutes. After 15 minutes, I was able to ride my sled back to the Island Park Lodge where I was staying. My chief complaint was low back and left shoulder pain, which was slowly exacerbating.

I retired from 36 years with the City of Tacoma, Washington Fire Department, including Firefighter Paramedic a bit over a year ago. So after a self-assessment at the lodge I began icing my sore low back and left shoulder, as well as taking 800 mg of Advil every 8 hours. Following a rough night, I asked one of my group if she would drive me to be seen.

Plowing through the options for care at Island Park, I decided to go to Rexburg where there would be a proper emergency department with X-Ray and C.T. capability.

I arrived to find a very modern hospital with what seemed to be a new emergency room. For a 10 year period of my fire service career, I worked part time doing emergency nursing at Tacoma General Hospital E.R., and I transported patients all over the Tacoma/Puyallup/King County area with my Fire Medic Unit, so I know emergency rooms very well.

I wish to commend you on a bright, cheerful, and efficient emergency room. The triage desk person was very friendly and helpful and wasted no time in getting me straight to a treatment room and under care of my nurs Roxy. Roxy was a wonderful, happy, and skilled nurse. She took a detailed history and got the chart right out to the doctor.

Waiting for Dr. Nathan Hancock gave me a bit of time to look over the treatment room from the gurney. I was very impressed by the cleanliness of the room and the caliber of the fixed equipment. You have a very nice facility.

After a few minutes, the doctor came in and gave me an examination. It was focused and thorough. He ordered x-rays of my shoulder and low back. I was also given an injection of Valium 10mg to break muscle spasm as well as a couple narcotic pain pills. This made me very comfortable and controlled my symptoms.

The x-ray department was located next-door to the E.D., as it should be. The staff there, once again were very friendly, caring, efficient and skilled. They took several films of my shoulder and spine.

Dr. Hancock and a radiologist looked at the films and advised me that I had two compression fractures of my spine, specifically Thoracic 12 and Lumbar 2. He then ordered a CAT scan to assess the stability of the fractures and to rule out any others not seen in th x-rays.

Again the C.T. unit was close to the ER and the operator was quick, efficient, wonderful, and caring. A radiologist who I did not meet read the results and passed his assessment to Dr. Hancock. Roxy returned several times to check my pain control, take vitals, and be sure I was doing ok. She is a wonderful skilled nurse who has a ready wit, motherly reassurance and loving touch. You are very lucky to have her. She deserves a raise.

Dr. Hancock returned to tell me the fractures were stable. Then told me he would prescribe a muscle relaxant, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory and narcotic pain medicines. He also advised I follow up with my PMD in a week or so. He laid out a set of restrictions in my activity. He seems very knowledgeable and business-like.

Roxy returned with a disc of my CT and x-rays, and I assume the chart since I live in Seattle/Tacoma area. She also gave me prescriptions with a set of very detailed discharge instructions. I am sorry for the length of this letter, however, I wanted to express my sincere thanks to your staff, and compliment them on their skill, expertise, and over all mastery in the delivery of emergency care. That care provided in a well -quipped, bright, and, clean emergency department.

Snowmobile WreckI give my short stay at Madison Memorial Hospital Emergency an A+++. Please believe me when I say I know emergency rooms and yours is top notch.

I hope you will pass my sincere gratitude on to the staff of you E.R. They did a great job, and are true professionals in every right.

Warmest Regards,
Craig Sig



Craig Miller
Firefighter Paramedic Supervisor, City of Tacoma Fire Department-Retired
Lakewood, WA 98498

Prepared by Lucas Handy                                    .facebookpinterestlinkedinmail

Get What You Need with One Call

New Scheduling Department

We are excited to open our new Centralized Scheduling Department. This new department will result in a faster, and more accurate admissions/scheduling process. Needed information on behalf of our patients and physicians will be collected beforehand. Then preregistration, authorizations, and insurance verification & benefits will be available and provided to the patient upon arrival. Patients may come directly to the express desk in admissions, reducing wait times, and provide more information. We hope that this new service will help you receive any information that you’d like, and assist you in getting to your appointment in less time.

The Scheduling Department

Monday – Friday 7:30 am – 6:00 pm. Phone: (208) 359-9800 Fax: (208) 359-6543

Before calling please have the following information ready:
– Name
– Date of Birth
– Phone Number
– Insurance
– Authorization
– Procedure and Procedure Code
– Diagnosis and Diagnosis Code
– Physician Name
– Lab Work (if needed)
– Modality Information


Daughter Named After Delivery Nurse Arleigh

Daughter Named After Delivery Nurse Arleigh

  • Summer Russell-Elrod


    My name is Summer Elrod and I delivered a baby girl in your hospital on January 18th, 2014. I was just completing my journal of our birth experience and wanted to share it with you. We were so fortunate to have Nurse Arleigh at our greatest time of need. Here is a copy of my journal entry for you to share with her. She was the greatest blessing in our time of need and I am so thankful for her.
    • My very first night with our new “Baby Girl Elrod” was somewhat of a blur. I was recovering from the events of the day, still in the recovery room, no husband, no family, just me, the nurse, and “Baby Girl Elrod” who we thought would be named Adler Gayle.

      With the hemorrhaging that took place I was left flat on my back, covered in orange juice puke, and unable to move. I was exhausted, on yucky morphine, and tired. Our new baby “Adler” was in our lives and we were so thankful for her to arrive safe and healthy. I felt Heavenly Father speaking to me throughout the pregnancy, be thankful for a healthy and safe baby. I thought our baby would be in trouble- but no! It was me!

      ArlieAt 5pm our nurse Toni introduced us to Arleigh. When I learned her name I told her that we considered naming our baby girl Arlie. We had selected Adler, Arlie, or Abbey for our baby girl before arriving at the hospital. We had decided that day upon Adler, and told her so. She said she’d never met another Arleigh.

      Arleigh looked like one of my BYU-I students. So warm and kind. She immediately brought a peace to our room that was needed. Mike’s mom Lori had arrived in town to help us welcome our new baby with a nasty cold/flu. It was so scary. The hospital would not allow anyone under the age of 18 or anyone with flu-like symptoms in. So, upon hearing that news she left town and we were left with Paxton and Tilly at home with my husband and me recovering in the hospital alone.

      “Adler” and I had no choice but to rely upon our nurse for help. I was a mother for the third time, in bad shape, and unable to just be a mother to our new baby. I couldn’t move, I couldn’t hold, I couldn’t feed, and I couldn’t reach my new baby. I needed care, and Arleigh was there for us. She was magic. She swept in and out of our room with ease. She was family, she was our healing and helping angel.

      I wanted so badly to move. I wanted to sit up in my hospital bed so I could be a mother to my new baby. It wasn’t possible, and I think I might has asked Arleigh each time she stepped into the room if I could. Without being stern or annoyed she gently let this morphine crazed mother know it wouldn’t be possible until the doctor cleared it. I also need care. My tummy needed massaging, my scar needed to be checked. She was kind, she was careful.

      I wanted so badly to hold my new baby. I had just spent the last 4 months crocheting hats and blankets for our little girl and I want to outfit her up! I couldn’t even reach my new baby let alone dress her. Arleigh stepped in to help. She found the items in my bag, dressed the baby, held her so I could see her, took a few pictures, and repeated that until all my items were tried on and found to be either too big or too small!

      I wanted so badly to feed my baby. I’m not a super milk producer. I like to get started right away to see if magically my milk will come in. Lying flat on your back, unable to move side to side makes nursing hard. How was I to begin if I could not see my baby’s mouth? I was frustrated and Arleigh saved me. With such amazing ease she took hold of the baby and my breast and got us to latch! I could nurse my baby! Now, that process was not easy and required lots of repetition. But we did it. I felt good about my efforts, and Arleigh did that for us.

      I wanted so badly to reach my baby. She was in her new little hospital crib and I was far away on my hospital bed. With the touch of a button Arleigh was there to bring my new baby to me so I could simply hold her. She just nuzzled in right under my arm like a little football player where her and I would rest until I would almost fall asleep. Arleigh would come get her and take her until I could really get some rest. It’s hard to see your baby out of your room. But I could not have been more comfortable with Arleigh taking my baby.

      We made it through our first night together. Not only did we make it, but we were happy and rested. The next day when my husband arrived he said hello to our new baby Adler. I kept saying hello and asking for our new baby…ARLIE? What? We had decided on naming our baby Adler, but I couldn’t call her that anymore. She needed to be Arlie. She was destined to be. Nurse Arleigh saved us at my lowest point, and wouldn’t our little girl be so blessed to know she was named after the nurse who so beautifully helped welcome her into this world? I think so.

      We never had Arleigh as our nurse for the remainder of our stay, but she did return to our room to say hello and we did get to introduce the new baby girl Arlie Gayle Elrod. Our family will forever love and be thankful for Nurse Arleigh.


Dave’s 25 Years of Progress

Dave’s 25 Years of Progress

Recently Dave Anderson celebrated 25 consecutive years as a pharmacist at Madison Memorial Hospital. Dave has almost worked here 28 years starting in the spring of ’86’ as a student. He left for a short time for schooling, and came back full time in February of ’89’. When he started, pharmacy was the youngest department in the hospital. Dave stayed because he believed the pharmacy department was always able to share a common vision of how things could work, and everyone has been motivated to make things work better. They have a high standard which has led to their success. Common goals, common objectives, and hard work keep them together in reaching lofty heights. Dave has also reached his own excellent personal health goals through cycling. He even has his own Rexburg Cycling Blog.

When he began there were very few computers in our hospital and everything was done by hand. In ’91’ over quite a few objections, they utilized the first clinical


system for pharmacy. Pharmacy has always been looking for areas to improve. Later they procured Omnicell, fully automated dispensing machines, which provide more accurate accounting, tracking, and record keeping while almost eliminating the margin of error in medicine treatment. It has certainly paid for itself. However to get this equipment, pharmacy had to apply for grants. While applying for grants, Madison Memorial Hospital soon realized that matching funds were a large part of acquiring a grant, thus the formation of Madison Memorial Hospital Foundation in 2002. When he began, pharmacy had a staff of five and has only doubled while the number of patients they care for, and the department’s total workload is more than four times greater. Dave feels that you can reject change, progress, and technology, but it will be to your detriment. If there is a better way to do things we persistently work to make it happen.

Dave has had the privilege of spearheading several pharmacy projects. One of his favorites still helps our babies in intensive care with a device, TPN automixer, that is used to prepare IV feeding solutions for NICU babies, helping us care for our babies with greater precision. The pharmacy has always been progressive and accepting of positive change. Thank you Dave and the pharmacy for helping our hospital better care for our patients with the best devices. May your next 25 years here be more progressive than your first.

Prepared by Lucas Handy




Joan & Dean Retire

Joan & Dean Retire

After 27.5 good years of working at Madison Memorial Hospital Joan has done her fair share of cooking, but loves the chance she has to meet new people. She claims it has been a good job. Her favorite thing about her job is not doing dishes, but she enjoys making cookies and baking. The Paragon tries to cater to everyone’s needs, both physical and emotional. She says that she has been able to help folks in the community with a listening ear. There is an environment here where people can share their feelings with people who care and understand. They are not too busy to care for one another, both patient and colleague alike. If anyone has a problem we will listen and understand.

Joan Roses
Joan would like to recognize a colleague and dear friend that recently passed away. They started working in The Paragon together about the same time. With tears in her eyes, Joan expressed her admiration for Pat. She is a kind and compassionate person who never says anything negative about anyone. Besides being positive, her actions are also sweet to everyone. Joan has been in the workforce since she was 15 years old. She felt that working at the hospital was like working together in a caring family.

Her next step is to buy a house with a big yard, and plant an endless garden of flowers… peonies, roses, lilacs, and sunflowers to start. She loves flowers. She will stay busy tending her garden with her grandchildren. Her mother loved flowers, and her grandma enjoyed snow flakes. Now when snow flakes fall on her cheeks it reminds her and her cousins of grandma’s kisses. Like snowflakes, may flowers remind your grandkids of you as rose bushes do for me as I remember my grandma Dorothy.

As a hospital team, we’d like to thank Joan, Dean, and all of our employees who compassionately serve with one another to help our community. May your golden years blossom and be blessed with joy and caring!

Prepared by Lucas Handy



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