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East Cedar Creek Freshwater Supply District meets at 12:30 p.m. the third Wednesday of each month at the ECCFSD office on Hammer Road just off Welch Lane in Gun Barrel City.
Eustace City Council meets at 7 p.m. in the Eustace City Hall the first Thursday of each month. For more information, please call 425-4702. The public is invited to attend.
Eustace Independent School District meets at 7 p.m. the third Tuesday of each month at the Eustace High School Library. For more information, please call 425-7131. The public is invited to attend.
Gun Barrel City Council meets in Brawner Hall at 6 p.m. the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 887-1087. The public is invited to attend.
Gun Barrel City Economic Development Corporation meets at 1831 W. Main, GBC, at 6 p.m. on the third Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 887-1899.
Henderson County Commissioner’s Court meets the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 9 a.m. in the Henderson County Courthouse in Athens. The public is invited to attend.
Henderson County Emergency Services District #4 meets at 7 p.m. the third Tuesday of each month at 525 S. Tool Dr. in Tool.
Henderson County Historical Commission meets the first Wednesday of each month at 1 p.m. in the HC Historical Museum.
Kaufman County Commissioner’s Court meets the first, second, third and fourth Monday of each month at 9:45 a.m. in the Kaufman County Courthouse in Kaufman. The public is invited to attend.
Kemp City Council meets at Kemp City Hall at 7 p.m. the second Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 498-3191. The public is invited to attend.
Kemp Independent School District meets the third Tuesday of each month in the Board Room in the Administration Building. For more information, please call 498-1314. The public is invited to attend.
Log Cabin City Council meets the third Thursday of the month in city hall. For more information, please call 489-2195. The public is invited to attend.
Mabank City Council meets at 7 p.m. in Mabank City Hall the first Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 887-3241. The public is invited to attend.
Mabank Independent School District meets at 7:30 p.m. the fourth Monday of each month. For more information, please call 887-9310. The public is invited to attend.
Payne Springs City Council meets at city hall at 7:30 p.m. every third Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 451-9229. The public is invited to attend.
Payne Springs Water Supply Corp. meets the third Tuesday of each month at 1 p.m. at the Payne Springs Community Center, located at 9690 Hwy. 198.
Seven Points City Council meets at 7 p.m. in Seven Points city hall the second Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call 432-3176. The public is invited to attend.
Tool City Council meets at 6 p.m. in the OranWhite Civic Center the third Thursday of each month. For more information, please call 432-3522. The public is invited to attend.
West Cedar Creek Municipal Utility District is held at 5 p.m. the fourth Monday of each month. For more information, please call 432-3704. The public is invited.
 

Rotary speaker ‘talks trash’
By Barbara Gartman
Monitor Staff Writer

GUN BARREL CITY–The rules for disposing of household trash have changed a lot in the last 50 years.
The changes over time were discussed by Gene Keenon, speaker for the weekly luncheon hosted by the Rotary Club of Cedar Creek Lake.
Keenon is the manager for government affairs for Allied Waste Services, as well as a member of the East Texas Council of Governments.
“About 117 Texas counties are without a landfill of their own,” Keenon explained.
Environmental issues, cost and state and federal requirements make it difficult, if not impossible, for some counties to support a landfill, he added.
Repeating what many environmentalists and other authorities say, the nation is a “throw away Society” Keenon said.
“Just 20 years ago, the average American threw away 5.6 pounds of refuse per day. Today we average 7.2 pounds a day,” he explained
One example of a continual household trash item is the plastic baby diapers.
“When my wife and I had our baby (several years ago) I told her to use cloth diapers. That lasted about two weeks. She then said I could use the cloth ones when I was home,” Keenon laughed, saying that plan didn’t work either.
Today engineers keep track of where the trucks dump their loads, which do not carry hazardous waste such as tires and batteries.
Cut up tires can be put in the landfills but not batteries because of the lead content.
“If someone gets caught dumping batteries, the fine can be $4,000 each,” he said.

Monitor Photo/Barbara Gartman
New member Shirley Salmon (left) is welcomed by the Rotary Club of Cedar Creek Lake as its president, Robert Blaase, pins her with the Rotary emblem.

In other business, members:
• heard the Japanese exchange students would be arriving in March.
President Robert Blaase asked the membership if they wanted to host the group again.
The response was yes and several times an “of course” was heard.
• heard the time for the bell ringing project for the Salvation Army would soon be here.
Karen Kelso mentioned the Rotary Club is responsible for one day and needs 16 volunteers on Saturday, Dec. 12.

H1N1 causes record numbers at Athens ER
By Toni Garrard Clay
Special to The Monitor

ATHENS–Plenty has been written and said about the H1N1 flu virus: don’t panic, it’s treated the same as seasonal flu, wash your hands, cough into your arm, stay home if you’re sick.
What’s seldom discussed is the impact of the so-called swine flu on besieged healthcare workers and facilities.
Despite the best intentions, many hospitals have been caught flatfooted. A finite number of doctors, nurses and space set against an escalating number of patients is, quite simply, a problem – a problem for which ETMC Athens was prepared.
“We were ready. We put together a surge plan before it hit,” medical director of the hospital’s emergency department Dr. Dan bywaters said.
A surge plan is a pre-existing guideline on how to handle a sudden and dramatic increase in the number of patients.
That dramatic increase is precisely what happened at ETMC Athens.
In early September, the number of patients per day coming into the ER averaged 82.
By the end of September, that number had jumped to 116.
That’s a 42-percent increase within a few weeks’ time.
As of this writing, the average number of ER patients per day has dropped slightly, to 100. But that’s still well above the pre-flu season norm.
“As far as we can tell, this hospital has never experienced this sustained 100-plus volume through the emergency department,” a clinical consultant with Compirion Healthcare Solutions Britt Watts said.
It was the foresight of ETMC Athens Administrator Pat Wallace which brought in a team of consultants this past April from Compirion, a healthcare consulting firm focusing on improving hospital performance.
“We know, for the time being, we’re limited in terms of the space available in the ER,” Wallace said.
“But we aren’t limited in terms of streamlining the process of moving people through the emergency department as efficiently as possible. We knew we could do better, and we’ve done so,” Wallace added.
This past April, the team from Compirion began working hand-in-hand with existing staff under the leadership of Bywaters and Emergency Department Director David Williams.
One of the first decisions made was to improve the way patients move through the emergency department.
As patient movement became more efficient, physician hour coverage was increased, and a special area was dedicated to see less acute patients, including those with flu-like symptoms.
These changes were made in August and September.
“Those changes significantly reduced the amount of time patients spent in the ER and helped the hospital handle the surge in patient volume,” Wallace said.
“It’s a credit to this hospital and its people that we put an effective surge plan together in relatively short order,” SVP of Operations for Compirion Bill Scarnato said.
“When you talk about a 42-percent increase inside 30 days – where would we be today if we hadn’t put that plan together?” he added.
Remarkably, though the average number of daily patients has skyrocketed, the average length of visit for those patients has dropped by just over an hour.
In early 2009, the average length of visit was 233 minutes. As of this writing, it’s 165 minutes (2 hours and 45 minutes) and improving.
How has that been possible? Thanks to two main components: the creation of a temporary triage treatment area which converted existing non-patient space into five treatment spots, and an overhaul of the process by which patients are seen through an ER visit.
Technically, the emergency department has 15 rooms. When needed, four hallway beds are also utilized.
In addition to that, as part of the surge plan, are the five treatment areas in triage (just off the waiting area) designated to handle patients with flu and flu-like symptoms. A physician and nurse staff the triage treatment area during peak hours.
The triage treatment area is not intended as a permanent fixture.
When the impact from the flu lessens, those areas will no longer be used for treatment.
“The sustainable part of what we’ve done, what will not be changing, is the new process developed by the existing team here in the emergency department,” Watts explained..
“The commitment to overhauling the process has been outstanding,” Scarnato agreed.
“What we’ve experienced is that the medical and nursing staff has been very committed to improving the way things are done. They’ve bought into the change, and that’s what’s made it successful,” Scarnato added.
That success couldn’t come at a more critical time. While the impact of flu patients has slackened somewhat of late, healthcare workers are being warned of another surge in H1N1 patients.
“We haven’t even seen regular seasonal flu hit yet,” Bywaters pointed out.
So get vaccinated, wash your hands and wait for this season to pass.

 

Come Adopt Us At
The Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake
The domino effect is a chain reaction that occurs when a small change causes a similar change nearby, which then will cause another similar change, and so on. My name is Domino, and I got my name not only because I’m black and white like a domino tile, but also because my outgoing, cheerful personality causes my doggie roommates to smile. This also causes our human friends to smile, which even causes the kitties in the cat room to smile.
I am an 8-month-old male Pointer/Terrier mix. I love children, other dogs, and even get along great with kitties. I’ve had all my shots and am ready to be adopted. If you’d like to experience the domino effect, I am sure to put a forever smile on your face when you take me to my forever home.
I currently live with a foster family, so if you would like to meet me, call my friends at the Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake at (903) 432-3422 to make an appointment. You can also email them at dogshsccl@yahoo.com.
 

We have many animals at the
Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake in Seven Points
in dire need of a good home.
Please call or stop by the Humane Society today
and rescue one of these forgotten animals.
The Humane Society of Cedar Creek Lake is located on
10220 County Road 2403 in Seven Points.
For more information, please call (903) 432-3422 after 11 a.m.
We are closed on Wednesday and Sunday.

For further information visit our website at petfinder.com


 


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