Burgess Moves Downtown for Trick-or-Treating

After 15 years of welcoming little ghosts and goblins to the spooky yet fun-filled events of BeWitched at Burgess, Burgess Health Center has decided to move the fun to downtown Onawa this year. Burgess will be handing out toys and treats along with other downtown businesses on Friday, October 29, 2021, from 3 – 5 p.m.

“Halloween is a special time for kids and sparks so much joy,” said Katie Ramm, Marketing Director at Burgess Health Center. “So, moving the event downtown and especially outside made the most sense in keeping everyone safe this year.”

Burgess is hopeful to host the BeWitched at Burgess event onsite next year.

Facebook 2021

Poinsettia Ball Goes Virtual for 2021

Burgess Health Center Foundation has shifted its annual, Poinsettia Ball to a virtual fundraising event again this year. The original in-person event was scheduled for December 11, 2021 at the Onawa Community Center.  The new virtual event will be held the week of December 6-11, 2021, with a user-friendly, online bidding system where guests can login, and browse and bid on the individual items and package deals offered.

“As excited as we were to host the Poinsettia Ball in person this year, we felt it was in the best interest of our guests and community members to host virtually again this year,” said Bobbi Johnson, Director of Burgess Foundation. “With COVID-19 numbers on the rise and Burgess as a health care organization, we need to be good stewards and navigate within the guidelines of the CDC and keep all our staff, volunteers, and guests safe.”

Proceeds from this event will help purchase a newer ambulance for Burgess Health Center. The ambulance service responds to 911 calls, transfers patients to other facilities, and assists with stand-by’s for fire calls – covering a total of 700 square miles! The crew also has a presence at community events such as fairs, football games and other special events. This new model will replace the older ambulance which has 131,000 miles.

In order to make this year’s event as interactive as possible, the Burgess Foundation will be utilizing the Burgess Health Center Facebook page to engage with guests. And another bonus – the event is completely FREE – no tickets needed! More information will be provided in the coming weeks.

Building the Future of Burgess with Agriculture

The Burgess Foundation is excited to announce our very first Gift of Grain donation.  This gift is an investment towards Burgess’ future in providing excellent healthcare and exceptional patient experiences.

Burgess Health Center is a proud supporter of our community and our agricultural producers who we rely on to help keep our small towns thriving. We want to make our agricultural leaders aware of the benefits not just on donating to the Burgess Foundation, but simple ways they can make a lasting difference.

“Crops are the livelihood of our local farmers.  With this first Gift of Grain I hope it inspires other agricultural producers to grow the future of Burgess,” said Bobbi Johnson, Burgess Foundation Director.

Replacing cash with a grain donation can help save on your taxes while investing in the Burgess Foundation at the same time. This can be done by providing a part of what you have grown into a Foundation that gives back to your own community. By doing so, you’re investing in the medical technology, equipment, and resources that help keep Burgess Health Center providing the best care possible to our patients.

Foundation Board Member Tammy Bramley and her husband Lyle Bramley of Bramley Farms in Ute, IA, gave the first Gift of Grain to the Burgess Foundation.

“Gifts of Grain are a unique way to make a charitable gift. Using grain can be a wonderful way to invest in our community while achieving tax savings,” said Tammy.

The Benefits

If the farmer chooses to donate grain, the farmer can then exclude the grain sale from income. Which can result in saving on your taxes. Here are some examples on how much you can save.

  • State income tax savings (up to 8.98% in Iowa)
  • Self-employment tax savings (15.3%)
  • Federal Tax income savings (up to 37%)

How can you donate?

The best way to start is contacting Bobbi Johnson, Burgess Foundation Director, at (712) 423-9374. Describe what you would like to donate and the amount you would like to contribute.

Keep a copy for your records. (This should be unsold crop with no prior sale commitment.)

Transfer the grain as a gift to the Burgess Foundation.  Your elevator can send a warehouse storage receipt to the Foundation. The grain should be put in the name of the Burgess Foundation.

The Burgess Foundation will then sell the grain and receive the proceeds.

Please consider consulting with a tax professional before donating to make sure this is the right choice for you. Remember, no gift is too small.

Photo: Foundation Board Member – Tammy Bramley, Lyle Kelm (grandson of Tammy & Lyle Bramley), Lyle Bramley, Burgess Foundation Director – Bobbi Johnson


Burgess Health Center Certifies Four New Hospice Volunteers

Burgess Health Center is proud to announce the certification of four new hospice volunteers.  Chuck Snow, Marge Hall, Dianne Derr and Don Thompson have all completed the required hospice training needed for the program.  Bringing a total number of volunteers for Burgess to 15.  Our volunteers are involved in a wide range of rolls and travel throughout Monona County to provide exceptional care.

The support our hospice volunteers provide is vital. They take on many roles.  They are drivers, receptionists, caterers, and caretakers to name a few. Above all though, they are a fantastic support system to our patients and their families when going through the end-of-life process.

“We would not be able to provide hospice service to our patients if we did not have wonderfully caring volunteers,” said Jenny Kenney of Burgess Home Health/Hospice. “We are truly blessed to have this great group of volunteers working with our patients and their families. Our volunteers are a special group of people, they are caring and compassionate.”

Photo: Chuck Snow, Marge Hall, Dianne Derr, Don Thompson



Groundbreaking Celebration Held at Burgess

Burgess Health Center held a groundbreaking ceremony for the $18.1 million expansion project that was announced in August 2021. This 26-month expansion and renovation project to expand access, improve privacy, and respond to current and future infectious diseases.\

Dozens of providers, board members, and staff gathered at 2 p.m. on the east side of the Health Center as Carl Behne, CEO led the event. Steve Pratt, Burgess Health Center Board Member, Brian Crichton of CMBA Architects, and BJ Gehrki from Graham Construction Company followed with more remarks on the future of the project.

Cake, cupcakes, and punch were enjoyed by all following the event.

Pictured: (left to right) Todd Ernesti, Project Manager at Graham Construction Company, Micheal Keller, Plant Operations Director at Burgess Health Center, Carl Behne, CEO of Burgess Health Center, BJ Gehrki VP of Graham Construction Company, Jeremy Vogel, Project Superintendent at Graham Construction Company, Chase Froehlich, Project Engineer at Graham Construction Company, and Brian Crichton, CEO of CMBA Architects.


Learning for Life Receives Recognition

Burgess Public Health is proud to report that their Learning for Life program was awarded the Iowa Family Support Credential in May. The Iowa Family Support Credential is awarded to family support and parent education programs that are validated through an external evaluation to be in substantial adherence to the Iowa Family Support Standards.

The Iowa Family Support Standards are based on the most up-to-date, evidence-based practice in the family support field.  Adherence to the standards indicates that the program is providing high-quality services that will result in positive outcomes for young children and their families.  The Learning for Life program diligently worked toward meeting all of the required standards over the course of more than two years with the assistance of a program specialist.  A peer review was conducted by trained peers from central Iowa to validate the program’s adherence to the standards.  The Iowa Family Support Credential is valid for five years.

Monona County’s Learning for Life program partners with Shelby and Harrison counties to be a Parents as Teachers Affiliate.  Parents as Teachers is an evidence-based home visiting model and curriculum used by staff in their home visits.  In August, the affiliate received the Blue Ribbon Affiliate designation, meaning our affiliate met or exceeded all essential requirements and met all or most of the additional Parents as Teachers Quality Standards.

The Learning for Life program would like to thank all of the community partners, board members, families, and staff that participated in the credentialing processes for our program.  We are grateful to all who took the time to help us receive these two honors.

The Learning for Life program is available to any family in Monona County with children prenatal through age 5.  Our staff aims to give your child the best possible start by building a strong relationship and increasing every parent’s confidence.  The program is free and provides twice-monthly in-home visits-we come to you because that is where your child learns best!  Being a part of Learning for Life gives you access to developmental screenings and health assessments, fun parent-child activities, family wellbeing support, car seat checks, child care items such as diapers, wipes, and so much more, including free passes to the zoo and area museums.  But best of all, parents will gain knowledge, confidence, and support as their children learn and grow!

For more information or to enroll, call Sara at 712-423-9253.

The Learning for Life program is supported by grants and funding from the Harrison, Monona, and Shelby Early Childhood Iowa Board, Prevent Child Abuse of Iowa, and the Monona County Board of Supervisors.

Burgess Breaks Ground on Clinical and ED Expansion

Burgess Health Center announced it is launching an $18.1 million investment in the local communities we serve. This 26-month expansion and renovation project to expand access, improve privacy, and respond to current and future infectious diseases kicks off this week at Burgess Health Center, located at 1600 Diamond Street, Onawa, Iowa. During construction, all hospital departments will remain open and operational.

The substantial phases in this project are comprised of expanding our available Specialty Clinic space for both Burgess and visiting specialty providers, more than doubling its current size and adding a dedicated entrance. This clinic relocation will also allow the cardiology clinic to move inside the Health Center, making coordinating care for those patients more convenient. In addition to the clinic expanding, our Emergency Department, Infusion Services, and Surgical Service areas will also grow, allowing added patient privacy and access to care when needed. Once the new construction phases of the project are complete additional improvements will be made to patient registration, the business office, support areas, educational spaces, waiting areas, and the gift shop.

Preparation for construction of the new Emergency Department will begin to the North of the hospital on Wednesday, August 25, with additional work to the East for the Specialty Clinic taking place in the weeks to follow. Patients will notice some minor road disruptions and rerouting of traffic during this time.

Burgess chose Graham Construction Company based out of Omaha and Des Moines as the general contractor for this project. Their values and relationship-building abilities make them one of the top healthcare contractors in the Midwest. Partnering with Graham Construction is CMBA Architects also based out of Sioux City and Des Moines. CMBA’s focus is on patient care, well-being, experience, and most importantly, their health. All these align with Burgess’ vision to be the best rural healthcare system in America.

Graham Construction and the Burgess Plant Operations teams are working diligently to make these disruptions minimal and appreciate your patience while we grow to better serve your needs. Please be on the lookout for construction equipment moving around the campus, as well as frequent updates about the project.


Diabetes Update Class

Burgess Health Center’s Diabetes Update Class is scheduled for Thursday, August 26 from 4 – 5:30 p.m. at Burgess Health Center or you can attend via Zoom from the comforts of your home.

Diabetes Update is for anyone who would like to prevent diabetes and for those who have diabetes or lives with someone who has diabetes. During this class, you will receive the latest update on ways to stay healthy with diabetes or prevent it.

There is no cost to attend, but registration is required. Please call Sue McLaughlin or Michele Kirkendall at 712-423-9268 with any questions or to pre-register.