HACKENSACK - Hackensack area residents will have an opportunity from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 24 to meet the nurse practitioner, Ellen Manthe, who will work at the St. Joseph's Medical Center of Brainerd Hackensack Clinic.
There will be an open house at the Hackensack Community Center to introduce Manthe. Lunch will be served. Model planes and trains will be on display along with antique and classic cars. Frank and Deb Prout will provide music.
Those attending also may tour the new clinic in the Hackensack Senior Class assisted living building across the street. The clinic and community center are one block east of Highway 371.
Manthe grew up in St. Paul Park. She followed in her mother's footsteps to become a nurse. She said she has enjoyed the variety of work within the nursing profession.
Ellen Manthe looked over patient charts at the Pine River Clinic where she will work until the new St. Joseph's Medical Center clinic opens Oct. 1 in Hackensack.
She has been a nurse in the Brainerd lakes area since 1978 when she started working for the St. Joseph's medical system. Since then she has earned bachelor's and master's degrees from the College of St. Scholastica.
She and her husband, John, live in Nisswa. They have four grown children. She enjoys reading, golfing and gardening in her spare time.
When she completed her master's degree, there were no openings at St. Joseph's for her to use her nurse practitioner certification, so she has worked the last eight years for the Veterans Administration's clinic in Brainerd.
She returned Aug. 4 to the St. Joseph's system and will work at the Pine River Clinic until the new Hackensack Clinic opens.
Nurse practitioners focus on disease diagnosis, treatment and management, she said. They also advocate for and provide preventive health care. They are qualified to order tests, prescribe medications and make referrals to medical specialists.
"People in health care do a better job today," Manthe said of the changes she has seen since entering nursing. When she started, she said people having cataract surgery used to spend a week in the hospital. Today, they are released about an hour after the surgery.
The greatest challenges she said health care providers face today is to provide the best care for patients, while still working within the rules and requirements insurers set in their plans. It is hard to keep current, because those rules change constantly, she noted.
"I was pretty excited to get back involved with the St. Joseph medical system," Manthe said. "They have great doctors."
Pine Area Medical Development Association will be accepting donations to help fund the new clinic.
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