Saint Alphonsus Medical Center - Ontario

351 S.W. 9th Street
Ontario, Oregon 97914
Phone: (541)881-7000
Toll Free: 1-877-225-4762



Everyone has heard the news and discussions about the H1N1 virus that is becoming more and more prevalent. However, although there are some concerns for individuals with pre-existing medical conditions such as pregnancy, asthma, diabetes, heart or lung disease, or other conditions that weaken the immune system, most individuals will recover from the flu with some common sense home treatment and rest. We therefore advise that before you rush into the doctor’s office or Emergency Room and wait needlessly in a crowded waiting room, you may want to utilize the “FLU ELEVATOR” at to do a self-evaluation, gain valuable information, and make informed decisions that will help you and your family make solid health decisions during this unusual flu season.

Symptoms of the H1N1 “swine” flu include fever, body aches, nausea, runny nose, vomiting, diarrhea, chills and coughing. If you are experiencing mild symptoms, you should stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them. Influenza is thought to spread mainly through the coughing or sneezing of infected people.
Holy Rosary Medical Center encourages everyone to use soap and water or a waterless hand hygiene solution to wash hands frequently; keep hands away from nose, eyes and mouth; and cough away from others and into a disposable tissue. If you cough or sneeze into your hands, make sure to wash them.

According to the Center for Disease Control, it isn’t necessary or feasible to test every person with influenza-like illness for H1N1 (formerly called the swine flu). Most people recover from the flu without needing medical treatment.
People with flu-like symptoms who are not at high risk for influenza complications do NOT need to be seen by a doctor and do NOT need to be tested for H1N1. Doctors may decide to test specific individuals based on their evaluation of that person’s particular illness.

At Holy Rosary Medical Center, we are following recommendations from the CDC and the Health Department regarding testing and treatment for influenza. Treatment for influenza is recommended only for patients who fall into the “high-risk” category. Those high-risk groups are:

  • People hospitalized with confirmed, probable or suspected H1N1 flu.
  • Children younger than 5 years old.
  • Adults 65 years of age and older.
  • Persons with the following conditions:
  • Chronic pulmonary, cardiovascular, renal, hepatic, hematological, neurologic, neuromuscular, or metabolic disorders
  • Immunosuppression, including that caused by medication or HIV
  • Pregnant women
  • Residents of nursing homes and other chronic care facilities.

We are happy to evaluate you for other illnesses and to recommend treatment for your symptoms if Tylenol, Motrin and over-the-counter remedies are not working.

Most people recover from the flu without needing medical treatment. You’ll feel sick for 7-10 days. Please stay home—you’ll feel better and you won’t infect your friends, co-workers or fellow students. During that time, you should get plenty of rest and drink lots of clear fluids (water, broth, sports drinks, electrolyte beverages for infants) to keep from becoming dehydrated. Be sure to cover coughs and sneezes.

As indicated on the CDC website, “you should take medications as needed for fever and pain. These include acetaminophen (Tylenol®) and ibuprofen (Advil®, Motrin®, Nuprin®), and cough medicine. Carefully follow the dosing instructions on the labels. These medicines do not need to be taken regularly if your symptoms improve.”

Additionally, the Center for Disease Control instructs:

  • You should not give aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) or products containing aspirin (e.g. Pepto Bismol®) to children younger than 19 years of age.
  • You should not give children younger than 4 years of age any over-the-counter cold medications without first speaking with a health care provider.”
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then dispose of the tissue immediately in the trash, or cough and sneeze into the crook of your elbow.
  • Throw away tissues and disposable items used by the sick person in the trash. Wash your hands after touching used tissues and similar waste.
  • Have everyone in the household wash hands often with soap and water, particularly after coughing and sneezing, or use alcohol-based sanitizing cleaners.
  • If you are sick and sharing a common space in your home, wear a facemask to help prevent spreading the virus to others.
  • Keep sick children under care at home when you go to the store or out in the public
  • And finally, now more than ever, it is very important to eat a balanced diet and get plenty of sleep.

For additional information about the H1N1 Flu virus pertinent to our area,
please visit the Malheur County Health Department website at:

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Holy Rosary Medical Center’s top goal is to keep our patients safe as they receive care, which is why we are excited to be part of a new Hand Hygiene Campaign. In collaboration with the Oregon Medical Association and Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems, Holy Rosary is involving our patients and their families to help us reach our goal of proper hand hygiene 100 percent of the time. We invite patients to ask staff members and physicians if they have washed or sanitized their hands. Our hospital is proud to be a place where patients are welcomed and encouraged to be involved in their care.

The facts about hand hygiene:

Hand washing or sanitizing may seem like an easy thing to do. Unfortunately, national research shows that hospital staff washes or sanitizes their hands only half of the time they should. When hands do not receive appropriate sanitation both patients and staff are at risk for infections. Many of these infections are serious and can lead to illnesses or even death. Proper hand washing or sanitizing is one of the best ways to prevent infections.

Steps Holy Rosary Medical Center is taking
to ensure proper hand hygiene

  • Soaps are enhanced with lotions to help alleviate drying and cracking from excessive washing.
  • Alcohol based hand rubs are located in every patient care area.
  • Waiting rooms, the cafeteria, and high traffic areas have readily accessible sanitizers for visitors, physicians, and employees.
  • The amount of soap and sanitizers used will be monitored to measure compliance with the campaign.
  • Signs to remind visitors, physicians, and staff to wash or use sanitizer are posted throughout the medical center.

Patients will be involved:
Our hospital is proud to be a place where patients are welcomed and encouraged to be involved in their care. The key to our new campaign is involving patients in their care. We encourage patients to ask every staff member or visitor who comes into contact with them, "Did you wash or sanitize your hands?" This may be in the patient room or anywhere else in the hospital where the patient is receiving treatment.

We have brochures entitled Help Us Help You for our patients and/or their families. The brochure explains the program and reinforces that we really do want our patients asking their healthcare workers if they have washed their hands.

If you would like a copy of this brochure, please contac Our ultimate goal is to heal our patients and aid them in getting better as soon as possible. We expect patients to ask so we can work as a team to provide the best healthcare possible.

On October 13, 2006, Holy Rosary Medical Center received notification from the American Diabetes Association that it had received an Education Recognition Award for it's Diabetes Self-Management Program (Living With Diabetes).  An honor that no other hospital between Boise and Portland, OR has received.icsInternet/AmericanDiabetesLg.png" width="568" height="140">

On October 13, 2006, Holy Rosary Medical Center received notification from the American Diabetes Association that it had received an Education Recognition Award for it's Diabetes Self-Management Program (Living With Diabetes).  An honor that no other hospital between Boise and Portland, OR has received.

In their communication about this award it was stated:

"The American Diabetes Association is pleased to award Education Recognition to your program.  Adherence to the National Standards has undoubtedly improved the education provided to people with diabetes.  We are confident that those you serve appreciate your effort, committment, and success in providing quality diabetes education."

Did You Know. . . .Living with Diabetes is an educational program that Holy Rosary Medical Center’s dietary department offers to inform, recently diagnosed and long standing, diabetics about how to control the disease and stay healthy. The diabetic education program offers patients a community based support system through fellow diabetics and Holy Rosary Medical Center staff. The class is taught by a licensed, registered dietician and a registered nurse specializing in diabetic education. The course covers topics such as: blood glucose monitoring, meal planning, medications, monitoring blood sugars, complications, stress management, and exercise regime.

Diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is needed to convert sugar, starches and other food into energy needed for daily life. The cause of diabetes continues to be a mystery, although both genetics and environmental factors such as obesity and lack of exercise appear to play roles.

There are 20.8 million children and adults in the United States, or 7% of the population, who have diabetes. While an estimated 14.6 million have been diagnosed with diabetes, unfortunately, 6.2 million people (or nearly one-third) are unaware that they have the disease.

Holy Rosary Medical Center wishes to specifically acknowledge the hard work and efforts by our dedicated staff of professionals who made this accomplishment possible:

  • Reta Sutton, RN, CDE, Program Coordinator
  • Deb Hampton, Registered Dietitian
  • Tiffany Scott, Registered Dietitian

If you would like information about the Diabetes Self-Management program offered at Holy Rosary Medical Center, please contact any of the individuals listed below.

  • Reta Sutton, RN, CDE, Program Coordinator  (541) 881-7402
  • Deb Hampton, Registered Dietitian  (541) 881-7480

Holy Rosary Medical Center Recognizes National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Ontario, Oregon – October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM). Since the program began in 1985, mammography rates have more than doubled for women age 50 and older and breast cancer deaths have declined.

This is exciting progress, but thee are still women who do not take advantage of early detection at all and others who do not get screening mammograms and clinical breast exams at regular intervals.

  • Women age 65 and older are less likely to get mammograms than younger women, even though breast cancer increases with age.
  • Hispanic women have fewer mammograms than Caucasian women and African American women.
  • Women below poverty level are less likely than women at high incomes to have had a mammogram within the past two years.
  • Mammography use has increased for all groups except American Indians and Alaska Natives.

    “If all women age 40 and older took advantage of early detection methods – mammography plus clinical breast exam – breast cancer death rates would drop much further, up to 30 percent,” says Linda Scott, Director of Diagnostic Imaging.

    “The key to mammography screening is that it be done routinely – once is not enough.”

Holy Rosary Medical Center’s Rama Vadapalli, Nuclear Medicine, will host a free public health education seminar Wednesday, November 1, 2006 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in the Snake River Conference Room at Holy Rosary Medical Center. The topic is breast cancer screening, diagnosis, and treatment and guest speaker include: Dr. K. Farrell, Dr. J. Cegnar, and Dr. S. Bolender. This seminar is open to the public; to RSVP please call (541) 881-7375.

For more information about NBCAM, please visit - National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
For additional information, please call one of the following toll-free numbers:
American Cancer Society, (800) 227-2345,
National Cancer Institute (NCI), (800) 4-CANCER,
Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization, (800) 221-2141

The National Breast Cancer Awareness Month program is dedicated to increasing public knowledge about the importance of early detection of breast cancer. Fifteen national public service organizations, professional associations, and government agencies comprise the Board of sponsors, who work together to ensure that the NBCAM message is heard by thousands of women and their families.

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On June 20th Christina Miller and Sandra Jensen of the HRMC Sleep Center participated at the 12th Annual Walter Knox Memorial Hospital Health and Safety Fair. The theme was "Family O’Fair " and our HRMC Sleep Center was able to talk to numerous residents of Emmett and the surrounding area about healthy sleep habits and sleep disorders.

It is our goal to raise the publics awareness of the health risks involved in unhealthy sleep. How about you? How much do you know about sleep and when sleep goes wrong? Do you know of anyone who has problems with their sleep? Maybe they snore or gasp for breath. Or perhaps toss and turn a lot. Maybe their limbs jerk or twitch often while they sleep. Or they wake up unrefreshed and feel tired all day. These are just a few of signs of a possible sleep disorder. Here at Holy Rosary Medical Center we have an excellent Sleep Center! Please help us improve the lifestyle of those who suffer from problems with sleep by spreading the word.

Sandra Jensen, RPSGT

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Thanks from CHI - Catholic Health Initiatives congratulates your hospital for its recent participation in the 100,000 Lives Campaign, created by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. Your efforts, and those of all hospital employees, strengthen this ongoing commitment to use proven techniques that can assure patient safety and quality of care. Thank you for the role you play in providing excellent care to our patients and community.

The following are the initiatives that HRMC is participating in:

  • Deploy Rapid Response Teams - at the first sign of patient decline;
  • Deliver Reliable, Evidence-Based Care for Acute Myocardial Infarction - to prevent deaths from heart attack;
  • Prevent Adverse Drug Events (ADEs) - by implementing medication reconciliation;
  • Prevent Central Line Infections - by implementing a series of interdependent, scientifically grounded steps called the “Central Line Bundle”;
  • Prevent Surgical Site Infections - by reliably delivering the correct preoperative care;
  • Prevent Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia - by implementing a series of interdependent, scientifically grounded steps called the “Ventilator Bundle.”

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The message to parents and caregivers is simple – Fragile: Handle With Care – and the biggest supporters of this message are Idaho’s children. Beginning April 3, every newborn in Idaho and at Holy Rosary Medical Center in Ontario, Oregon,will remind parents of this important message by wearing a specially designed onesie from St. Luke’s Children’s Hospital and the Idaho Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

A onesie and an informational packet about the importance of handling babies with care will be given to the parents of every child born during the first full week of April. This statewide effort will educate new parents about the dangers that exist when frustrating parent moments arise, especially during a newborn’s early stages of development.

“Taking care of an infant can be challenging, especially when it seems like the crying will never stop. Even if you have tried to calm your child but nothing seems to work, it's important to stay in control of your temper,” said Dr. David Christensen, president of the Idaho Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. “It's never okay to shake, throw, or hit your child. If you feel as though you could lose control take a deep breath, take a time out, or call someone for support.”  

Approximately twenty hospitals in Idaho are spreading the message of child abuse prevention by holding media events throughout the state of Idaho in the cities of Boise, Pocatello, Coeur d’Alene, Nampa, and even in Oregon at Holy Rosary Medical Center in Ontario. Media representatives are invited to hospitals and newborn nurseries statewide to discuss the risks associated with shaking a baby, how to sooth a crying baby, and the importance of handling a child with care.

Quick Links:

  • Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

  • WebMD

  • InteliHealth

  • Health Touch

  • Health Finder - U.S. Department of Health & Human Services

Phone Numbers:

Find a phone number for any hospital department here

Notice of Privacy Practices:

SAMC Notice of Privacy Practices

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Website

Medical Privacy - National Standards to Protect the Privacy of Personal Health Information

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