Tuesday, February 28, 2017

EIRMC announces Frist Humanitarian, Excellence in Nursing award winners

Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center has announced its Frist Humanitarian Awards, given annually by each Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) hospital. The award is named after the late Dr. Thomas Frist, Sr., HCA’s founder, and given to an employee, physician and volunteer.

EIRMC also announced its Excellence in Nursing Awards recipient, given in two categories: Professional Mentoring and Compassionate Care.

Frist Humanitarian Award (Physician) – Dr. Andrew Garrity, emergency room physician

Dr. Andrew Garrity
Dr. Andrew Garrity is a board-certified emergency medicine physician, and has been a member of the EIRMC medical staff for 18 years. His nomination spoke of his willingness to serve his patients and highlighted that no task is too simple, even getting blankets or drinks for his patients. In his nomination, several stories were offered to illustrate his compassion and kindness.

“A patient we had seen many times before was getting ready to go to jail after his medical clearance. He was a thin man and one who lives a hard life. The patient was standing with his arms cuffed behind his back, no shirt or shoes and pants falling down. As the scene unfolded, some of the ER staff were wondering what the cops were going to do about his pants. Dr. Garrity just walked up, said ‘Partner let’s do up your belt,’ cinched up his belt and walked away. One of the ER staff grinned and said ‘I want to be just like Dr. Garrity.’”

Another time, an older couple came in to receive care one evening. A diagnosis was given and prescriptions written. Upon discussing the plan of care with the patient and his wife, it was brought to light that they were on a limited income and getting these prescriptions would be a huge burden to the patient. Dr. Garrity handed the chart to the nurse and said ‘Please give them this envelope and do not tell them it was from me.’It was money for them to be able to get their prescriptions filled.”

As a Frist Award winner, EIRMC will make a donation in Garrity’s name to his charity of choice, the Idaho Falls Soup Kitchen.

Frist Humanitarian Award (Employee) – Kirie Brown, R.N., director of education & wellness

Kirie Brown
Kirie Brown serves as the director of education and wellness at EIRMC and was nominated by several staff members in her department. Each nomination was unique, but all mentioned how impressed they have been with her dedication to community and global service.

Brown has traveled several times to third world countries to teach neonatal resuscitation to doctors and nurses. To date, she has been to Nepal, China, Belize, Jordan, and parts Africa to teach people life-saving care methods for their infants right after birth. She often uses her own funds to make these trips possible.

As a Frist Award winner, EIRMC will make a donation in Kirie’s name to her charity of choice, the EIRMC Auxiliary.

Frist Humanitarian Award (Volunteer)– Dan Ashworth

Dan Ashworth
Dan Ashworth has been an EIRMC volunteer for four years and has volunteered over 2,300 hours of his time. A former member of the U.S. Navy, he remains passionate about helping his fellow veterans. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Vietnam Veterans of America and also works with several other organizations including the American Legion, Disabled American Veterans and the Veterans Mobility Corporation (VMC). At the VMC, Dan helps to provide powered wheelchairs to veterans who would otherwise not have access to them.

While volunteering at EIRMC, Ashworth met the family of a veteran who was undergoing a leg amputation. The veteran would need a powered wheelchair after his recovery but had no means to obtain one. He was able to connect the veteran to VMC and he was given the organization’s 71st wheelchair.

A EIRMC, Ashworth volunteers in the Surgical Waiting Room, where he helps keep families informed of what is going on with their loved ones. This is a key role and provides families with much needed comfort during what would otherwise be a stressful time.

As a Frist Award winner, EIRMC will make a donation in Dan’s name to his charity of choice, the Veterans Mobility Corp.

Excellence in Nursing, Professional Mentoring – Kathy Fatkin, Ph.D, AHIP, R.N., Medical Librarian

Kathy Fatkin
Kathy Fatkin has been the medical librarian at EIRMC for 20 years and is a strong advocate for nursing excellence at EIRMC. She is known for encouraging fellow employees to always continue learning and even pursue advanced degrees
and serves as an exceptional mentor to many of our staff.

Her commitment to continual learning and professional growth led her to seek a doctoral degree in library science. She worked full time during the seven years that it took to finish her program. She spends many hours mentoring individuals who are currently working on advanced degrees. She also makes herself available to any nurse or staff member with clinical questions, assisting them with finding answers and providing patients with the best care possible.

Fatkin serves as the executive sponsor of the research arm of the EIRMC Shared Governance Council and utilizes her knowledge to advance nursing practices throughout the hospital. In so doing, she ensures that policies and decisions are in line with best evidence based practices.

As an Excellence in Nursing winner, EIRMC will make a donation in Fatkin’s name to her charity of choice, the National Park Foundation.

Excellence in Nursing, Compassionate Care – Malinda Barker, R.N.

Malinda Barker
Malinda Barker is a clinical supervisor in the EIRMC Post Anesthesia Care Unit in Perioperative Services. Her nominators described her as a selfless and kind person who cares greatly for her co-workers. She has a reputation for bringing in treats and goodies from her garden on holidays, birthdays, and other days, even on days off.

Her nomination called her a “tireless advocate for her patients.” Because of the area she works, Barker’s patients are coming out of anesthesia and not awake during her interactions with them. Rather than let that stop her, she goes out of her way to make sure each patient has the best experience possible and actively looks for ways to improve each patient’s experience. No job is too small, and nothing is too much to ask of her.

As an Excellence in Nursing winner, EIRMC will make a donation in Barker’s name to her charity of choice, City of Refuge.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

"Grid Game" headlines 2017 Engineering Your Future event

The Grid Game got its start as a simulator of the power swing equation created for the Idaho Universities’ Resilient Control Systems class in Fall of 2013.
In recognition of National Engineers Week, Idaho National Laboratory (INL) and the Center for Advanced Energy Studies (CAES) are sponsoring the Engineering Your Future STEM Workshops and GridGame Competition event today from 4-6:45 p.m. at CAES, 995 University Boulevard.

The event is aimed at local high school and college students, and will feature booths, a prize drawing, the GridGame Competition, and several interactive STEM workshops on subjects including wind energy, electric vehicles, mechanical engineering, virtual reality, unmanned aerial systems and INL internship opportunities.

The GridGame is a desktop simulation developed by INL that allows students to experience what it is like to manage a power grid in the face of adverse conditions. During the competition, players will use the digital control panel simulation to try to obtain the most revenue from their microgrid by optimizing the use of resources (e.g., storage, generation, loads) while combating hackers trying to sabotage their control systems. In addition to competing against each other, teams will try to beat a challenge team led by Jackie Flowers, Idaho Falls Power’s head honcho.

The team with the highest score in the competition round will be invited to attend the Eastern Idaho Engineers Week Banquet Friday at the Idaho Falls Shilo Inn.

National Engineers Week takes place each February during the week of Washington’s birthday, Feb. 22.

For more about the grid game, here’s a story that ran in 2015: GRID GAME TEACHES STUDENTS ABOUT ELECTRIC GRID COMPLEXITY, RESILIENCE.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

I.F. building permits applications start accumulating

We know a lot of you check in here to find out what sort of development is going on. With the weather warming up and the snow going away we expect to have more to tell in the coming days.

In the meantime, here is a list of commercial building permits application recorded by the city of Idaho Falls Building Department since the beginning of the year.

COM17-0003: INL Energy Services Lab overhead door removal and infill, 750 University Boulevard
COM17-0004: Sunnyside Place Memory Care Renovation, 3400 South 5th West
COM17-0005: Remodel and wall relocation, 2110 Rollandet Avenue
COM17-0006: Earl Building Iteris Office remodel, 525 North Park Avenue
COM17-0007: Advance Home Care Remodel, 2100 Niagara Street
COM17-0008: EIRMC Imaging Center Remodel, 2860 Channing Way, Unit 123
COM17-0010: TMO L700 Monopole remodel, 325 Briggs Street
COM17-0011: NewU Salon, 1,664 square-foot addition, 2048 E. 17th Street
COM17-0012: Zoo breakroom remodel, 460 Rogers Street
COM17-0014: Dr. Bitter office remodel, 749 Oxford Drive
COM17-0015: Buildout of additional EROB offices, 2525 Fremont Avenue
COM17-0016: B&G Tire remodel to add interior filing room, 265 Northgate Mile
COM17-0018: Parking garage for hospital expansion, 2325 Coronado Street
COM17-0019: HVAC remodel, 2075 North Boulevard

No, we don't know why there are gaps in the numbering. We can ask, if it's important to you.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Java Espress plans March 17 grand opening for Anderson Street shop

Java Espress is planning a March 17 grand opening for its newest shop, at 745 E. Anderson Street, from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m.

All 16-oz. drinks will be free that day, including all specialty coffees, chai and flavored sodas. All Javaccinos, Real Fresh fruit smoothies, protein shakes and energy drinks will be 25 percent off.

This is the company’s eighth location. Based in Idaho Falls since 1993, Java Espress is locally owned and operated.

They are introducing a new line of flavored sodas with Nugget ice, and high energy and protein drinks.

The new Anderson location will be open 4:45 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, and 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday.

“I think this NEW Idaho Falls store will be an absolute home run,” said owner and CEO Shane Murphy. “With a location near the Idaho National Laboratory community, our amazing baristas and delicious products, how could it not be? Our team is energized and ready to continue setting the standard for quick service of gourmet beverages.”

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

NanoSteel closes on new equity investment

It’s a long way from the Snake River to Motor City, but NanoSteel, a company with its roots in Idaho National Laboratory and its R&D department still in Idaho Falls, announced Feb. 13 it has closed on a new round of equity investment led by GM Ventures.

Proceeds from the investment round will be used for the commercialization of NanoSteel’s advanced high strength steel (AHSS) for automotive applications. The financing includes new investments from Lear Corp., a leading automotive seating systems and electrical systems supplier, and SPDG, the leading car importer in Belgium and owner of Belron, the global leader in vehicle glass repair and replacement.

NanoSteel’s corporate headquarters are in Providence, R.I., but the company spun out of INL in 2002. It was founded by Dan Branagan, an INL researcher who led a team in the mid-1990s in the development of Super Hard Steel. When he left the INL, Branagan, now NanoSteel’s chief technical officer, took processes and patents he developed at the lab and spun them out for licensing to industry. The company’s products are used in oil and gas, mining, power generation, and cement and concrete, and it develops metal powders for 3D printers. He was recognized the 2002 Forbes Special Anniversary Big  Ideas Issue as “one of the important innovators of our time, one of 15 people who will reinvent the future,” and was selected by Massachusetts Institute of Technology as one of the top 100 “brilliant young innovators” in the world whose work will have “a deep impact on how we live, work, and think in the century to come.”

But Branagan said in 2016 that lightweight steel was always his ultimate goal. In 2012, General Motors Ventures LLC bought a stake in the company. "Over the next several years, light-weighting of vehicles will be a major focus area to improve fuel economy," said Jon Lauckner, GM's chief technology officer, vice president of Global R&D and president of GM Ventures. "NanoSteel's nano-structured alloys offer unique material characteristics that are not available today, making them a potential game-changer."

Commercial scale qualification of Advanced High Strength Steel began in North America in 2016. AHSS features a combination of very high strength with the enhanced formability normally found only in low-strength mild steels. The blend of properties provides designers the ability to optimize part geometries resulting in thinner, lighter components.  Additionally, it allows part producers to avoid costly production processes, such as stamping shapes at high temperature (hot stamping), when forming the new designs.

Through the transaction announced Feb. 13, Lear Corp. becomes the first automotive Tier 1 supplier to license NanoSteel’s products. “After initial testing of NanoSteel’s AHSS, we are optimistic about its potential to contribute lighter materials for our vehicle seating structures,” said CEO and President Matthew J. Simoncini, in a press release. “Helping our customers meet their fuel economy targets is a clear priority for Lear, and we are enthusiastic supporters of new lighter-weight solutions that would allow us to use our current manufacturing infrastructure.”

Olivier PĂ©rier, CEO of SPDG, called NanoSteel “a compelling opportunity that targets two of our core investment theses, disruptive mobility solutions and environmental sustainability. We believe NanoSteel is positioned for significant growth,” he said.

NanoSteel president and CEO David Paratore said the latest investment brings the company to an inflection point, “where our focus has shifted from technology development to product deployment with our steel partners and automotive customers. Our relationships with Fortune 500-level partners have been a major factor in our accomplishments thus far and will be key to our success moving forward,” he said.