The dawn of a new year is upon us. Can you believe it? I just got used to writing 2016, and we are now barreling into 2017. It is very true that the older you get the faster time flies. This year has passed especially swiftly for me.
Isn’t this also the time when we reflect on the past year and look forward to a new year? We make New Year resolutions, our own personal goals; we also revisit our professional goals and reflect upon what we want to achieve over the next year.
2016 has been a banner year for Katy Trail Community Health. We experienced tremendous growth (13%) in the number of patients we served from 2015 to 2016. Most of the growth was the result of growth in our Marshall site, which opened in September 2015, and the addition of two full time dentists in Sedalia (Drs. Anderson and Kingsolver) and one full time dentist (Dr. Carpenter) in Warsaw. They have been wonderful additions to our dental team, serving up our mission with every patient they treat.
Speaking of new providers, we also welcomed Dr. Sarah Gordon, and Dr. Michael Duzan. Both physicians spent the early parts of their careers working at community health centers and both were thrilled about working out the rest of their careers at Katy Trail Community Health. We so appreciate their commitment to taking care of the most vulnerable people in our communities. We built a new facility in Versailles expanding both our facilities and entering into a partnership with Lake Regional Health Center to provide specialty care in Versailles. We are so grateful for our new partnership.
We initiated a new oral health program offering comprehensive oral health services to patients in our medical clinic whose oral disease worsens their chronic disease. We are so thankful to our dentists and dental support staff who are making this program work. We hired a chief nursing officer (Michael Janusz, RN, MSN) whose main function is to support and develop our nursing staff.
We also experience a blow to our organization with the tragic death of long time board member Hollis Hensley. Hollis was our board treasurer and was both beloved and vital to our organization. His passing leaves a great gap in our board that will be impossible to fill.
As we turn our attention to 2017, we commit ourselves to supporting and empowering our staff in their efforts to improve the health people living in west central Missouri. You see it is our staff: physicians, nurse practitioners and their teams, dentists, dental hygienists and their teams, psychiatrists, behavioral health consultants, and all the non-clinical staff, who devote every day of their work to creating healthy communities. Our staff embodies our mission. They dedicate themselves to quality care; they create partnerships, both with each other and throughout our communities to support our patients. Their efforts to improve the health of the communities we serve.
On behalf of the Katy Trail Community Health Board of Directors and our incredible staff, we wish our patients, partners and community members a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.