Isham named ‘Clinician of the Year’

For 19 years, Sally Isham has been quietly serving the health needs of women in Hood River County.

According to Ellen Larsen, director of Hood River County public health and Isham’s supervisor, the dedication, expert care and compassion Isham has given her patients has not gone unnoticed.

“Sally was awarded the Vivian O. Lee ‘Clinician of the Year’ award at the Region X Reproductive Health conference,” said Larsen. “We are very happy that she was recognized for her work.”

The annual honor is given to only one clinician providing women’s health and family planning services across a four-state region. Isham was nominated by fellow nurse clinician Terry Rundell, of the Klickitat County Public Health Department.

Trained as a registered nurse, Isham undertook additional specialized training in family planning after the Nixon administration implemented Title X funding for reproductive health services in 1970.

“I see a lot of women who can not afford care anywhere else,” said Isham, who typically has seen 16-20 patients a day during her years of full-time work. She has cut down to part-time now, but was very clear that “the need for these services has not gone down.”

“Sally has provided a wonderful opportunity for lower income women to receive excellent women’s health care,” said Larsen. “She has made some diagnoses that would have been delayed if not for her care.”

In family planning nursing for more than 24 years, Isham has worked to insure women without insurance or financial resources could receive top-quality care in women’s health.

“I’m a preventative medicine person. Without this care, we would have many more people going to the E.R., many more unintended pregnancies, and many more abortions,” she said.

Raised on a cattle ranch in Eastern Oregon, Isham is used to hard work, and now finds herself fitting five days’ worth of patient visits into three.

“I’m the only one here doing this care right now,” said Isham, who remains committed as always to her calling.

“Sally is always warm, open and caring with everyone,” said Larsen. She identifies and works well with all kinds of people and all ages.”

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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