WAHOO – Saunders Medical Center Chief Executive Officer Julie Rezac reported several new services SMC will be providing during the Saunders County Board of Supervisors on Nov. 10.
Rezac said that these new services include a program related to mental health. Rezac said SMC has seen an increase in anxiety, depression, suicide ideation and suicide attempt.
“We knew there’d be ripple effects in COVID,” Rezac said.
After visiting with Three Rivers Health Department Executive Director Terra Uhing about this increase, Rezac said the two entities decided there needs to be something done. SMC, Three Rivers, Boystown in Omaha and Nebraska Medical Center have been working together to create a program that supports mental health situations for rural communities.
This program will provide behavioral health education for nurses and doctors as well as much needed information in regards to mental health for kids, parents, schools and rural hospitals. Rezac also said that the program could be sent to Governor Ricketts to be implemented throughout Nebraska.
“We are well aware that the big cities have great mental health practitioners so not to undercut anything that they do,” Rezac said. “This is just really about the people in rural communities who don’t have those resources and to be able to get some type of education or support.”
Rezac also said SMC has been implementing heart contrasts during heart exams as well as RetinaVue which provides vision checks for diabetic patients to prevent potential blindness.
Highway Superintendent Steve Mika opened bids for two culvert projects and eight stream rehabilitation projects. After deliberating, Jefferson Culverts out of Jefferson City, Missouri won the culvert bids because of its least costly nature at $81,783.05 for both culverts.
As for the eight stream rehabilitation projects, there were four different companies that submitted bids. Each company provided bids for each of the eight projects. One project was pulled because the county had already begun work on it after the 2019 floods.
The seven other projects’ bids were reviewed. Mika came back with the least costly bids for each project from the four different companies.
Gana Trucking out of Martell won three of the projects, High Plain Enterprises of Martell won two of the projects and M.E. Collins Contracting Co., Inc. of Wahoo won two projects. The total costs of all seven projects is $587,475.08.
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