2017 Memorial Hospital Open Golf Tournament grosses over $50,000 to support Let's Go Childhood Wellness Program

Governor Chris Sununu attends awards dinner to recognize Memorial and address health-care initiatives

CONWAY — Golfers took to the greens at the Wentworth Golf Course in Jackson last week as part of the 37th Annual Memorial Hospital Open Golf Tournament. The event grossed over $50,000 to support "Let's Go," the hospital's initiative to bring health and wellness education and activities to school-aged children throughout Mount Washington Valley.

The tournament was founded in 1980 by former New Hampshire Congressman Bill Zeliff. In its early years, the event often saw the likes of Gov. John H. Sununu, White House Chief of Staff under President George H.W. Bush, and father of now-Gov.Chris Sununu.

Now in 2017, the Sununu family turned out once again for the North Conway hospital's cause, with John Sununu and wife Nancy playing in the tournament with Memorial's president and CEO Scott McKinnon, and Governor Chris Sununu making an appearance at the awards dinner.

The event benefits Memorial's Let's Go program. The program serves 12 sites around the valley such as schools, pre-schools and daycare centers, to help them work towards receiving official Let's Go program certification.

Let's Go is an evidence-based program that works to reduce childhood obesity through better nutrition, more exercise and less screen time. The results are impressive. At Let's Go sites' school, child care and after school programs, almost 2,000 students were impacted by Let's Go. Schools and sites are limiting unhealthy choices for snacks and celebrations, eliminating sugary beverages and limiting recreational screen time.

Last year, the event raised over $52,000 which supported the program. The event has raised over $850,000 over its long history, purchasing many pieces of life saving equipment and supporting community health programs.

For more information, go to www.memorialhospitalnh.org/golf.



2017 Memorial Hospital Open Results
1st Place Mixed $300
Will Owen/ Colin Wroblewski/ Devin Copsey/ Michelle Ramsey 57
1st Place Ladies $300
Debbie Bryant/ Sue Wiley/ Jessica Ross/ Barbara Pinkham 69
1st Place Men $300
John Idoine/ Ryan Gooden/ Justin Zinn/ Thomas McDonough 54
2nd Place Mixed $240
Jack Rowe/Chris/Rowe/Fred O'Neil/Lynn Anderson 61
2nd Place Ladies $240
Kim McKinnon/Sheila Duane/Michelle Capozzoli/Ellen Oblenbusch 71
2nd Place Men $240
Bayard Kennett/Dan Jones/ Pat Kittle/Mark Patterson 56
3rd Place Mixed $160
Bill Caron/Mark Harris/Al Swallow/Mechelle Connolly 61
3rd Place Ladies $160
Mary Vigeant/ Arlene Mrozowski/Patty Keane/Amy Russo 94
3rd Place Men $160
Don Newton/Brett Newton/Peter Pettengill/Mathew Phillips 61
4h Place Mixed $120
Mary Deveau/Peter Deveau/Mike Green/Andrew Green 63
4t Place Men $120
Christopher Walkley/Bill Zafferson/John Aubin/Bill Jones 63
Closest to the Pin
Hole #16 Ladies Michelle Ramsey 22' $25
Hole #16 Men Jack Rowe 7'2" $25
Hole #5 Ladies Lynne Anderson 23'8" $25
Hole #5 Men Mike Green 7'3" $25
Long Drive
Hole #12 Ladies Jessica Ross $30
Hole #12 Men Curtis Tinker $30


  • Category: Health

White Mountain Community Health Center welcomes new executive director

By Sienna Kaplan-Thompson

White Mountain Community Health Center recently welcomed its new executive director, Kenneth "JR" Porter Jr., who took over from outgoing Executive Director Patricia McMurray earlier this month. McMurray will be available on an advisory basis for the next six months. Executive Assistant Siena Kaplan-Thompson sat down with Porter, or JR as he prefers to be called, to learn more about him and introduce him to the community.

Siena Kaplan-Thompson: Tell me about your background. You've been in the military most of your life?

Kenneth "JR" Porter Jr.: I recently retired from 33 years of Naval service as a command master chief in senior leadership positions and as a health-care provider. I've provided care in combat and in peacetime on every continent in the world. I was trained as an independent duty corpsman, equivalent to a civilian physician's assistant, and in fact, where the PA program started from during the Vietnam era. We provide medical care in remote and austere locations as well as combat attached to the Marine Corps, Special Forces and other agencies worldwide.

Kaplan-Thompson: So you've had a lot of hands-on experience providing medical care, as well as running clinics?

Porter: Yes, I was also the only medical provider on two ships with 300 crew members, as we deployed all over the world. It's like being a small-town doc. You're their primary care provider, and you get very close to them and their families and there are multiple times when someone just wants to "talk with Doc" as well as just medical issues.

I also set up clinics for local populations in countries we were working in. It's a good way to gain civilians' trust — if you treat someone's child, they'll see that you're on their side. And it's what I got into the medical field for, to help people.

Kaplan-Thompson: What have you been doing most recently?

Porter: In the past 15 years or so, I've been more on the policy and management side. I managed medical assets (personnel and supplies) attached to the Marine Corps Reserve at the national level. That was a learning experience. The Pentagon is such a large organization that it moves very slowly, so once you get something in place it might be four or five years down the line from when you started it, and sometimes it doesn't make sense anymore.

For example, during the First Gulf War, a corpsman would serve as the "Doc" for reserve troops stationed in every state. When they went into combat, though, the corpsman would stay behind while their Marines deployed. The theory was that they would be here to care for the wounded troops. But in the Gulf War, there weren't a lot of casualties. I helped change this structure so that the corpsmen would follow their troop overseas. Then once we got into Afghanistan and Iraq it was a very different situation, there were a lot of casualties and those corpsmen were needed at home. But it took a long time to change things back.

Kaplan-Thompson: How have your experiences overseas affected the way you work?

Porter: It makes it easier to relate to different people, easier to talk to anyone. In the end, everyone needs someone else's help, and it's about finding ways to work together even if you have different backgrounds so you can get things done.

You also do get a look at how things are in other places, and you're forced out of your jaded bubble. When you work in war zones and in places with a lot of strife, you see it can be much worse somewhere else. I was in Sierra Leone, a country that went from being a very prosperous country to just utter devastation. They used to have power and infrastructure, and then it was just gone. We were treating people for things you never see in this country, like typhoid and malaria, which was interesting as a provider but a horrible situation. We learn that we have to be at our best when everyone else is at their worst.

Kaplan-Thompson: After doing so many things all around the world, what attracted you about White Mountain Community Health Center?

Porter: I like to be where the rubber hits the road. It's the reason I got into medicine in the first place, I like to help people. In the end, I didn't want to be working for a big machine, I wanted to take care of the people who need taking care of.

A lot of what I've done was setting up small clinics, doing what you could do with what you have. In the field, you use whatever's available — I've set up clinics using just what was in my backpack, and I've set up large clinics coordinating big organizations like the Red Cross and other NGOs. Every clinic has its idiosyncrasies, but really a clinic's a clinic and I know clinics. So it's a different setting, but I feel very familiar with what you're doing here: using the resources you have available to provide care to the people who need it.

Kaplan-Thompson: You've been living in Virigina — are you excited for all the snow you're about to encounter?

Porter: No, I am not all that fond of snow! My girlfriend is a rider, so she's been trying to get me into it. I'm more into water sports and hiking. But I'm from New England, my aunt lives in Glen, so I've spent a lot of time here, and it's good to be home. This is my 16th move in 33 years, and I'm looking forward to settling down and being in the same place for a while.

Kaplan-Thompson: If not skiing, what do you do for fun?

Porter: I love food and culture. There's this idea that you have to go all the way around the world to try different things, but every area has something interesting going on, you can go from North Conway to Conway Village and it's entirely different.

Eating and drinking with people is when you really get to know them. Things get solved more socializing than in a board room. That's something I've learned from interacting with people in different cultures, when you're sitting at a table together it gets people at same level.

Kaplan-Thompson: Do you have any big plans for the health center yet?

Porter: I want to thank Patricia for where she's gotten it. We're in an interesting time in this country with changes in health care. It's a great time for transitions and bringing in new ideas.

Kaplan-Thompson: Is there anything you'd like to add that I didn't cover?

Porter: I think people sometimes get the wrong impression when they hear "military." That's my background, and I did do combat, but the medical field in the military isn't about being a hardliner and stickler for rules — it's the opposite actually, you have to be adaptable and meet people where they're at. If you've seen M*A*S*H you get the idea.

The biggest thing I've learned in all my experiences is that we're all going to face stuff, no matter where you're coming from, but it's all doable. You might be a millionaire, or you might be living with a dirt floor, but either way you'll still have worries and there's always a way forward and there's always an answer.



  • Category: Health

Memorial Hospital Board votes to take MaineHealth unification concept to local community

Memorial Hospital and other MaineHealth hospitals and organizations are contemplating a change in their governance model and financial structure

CONWAY — Memorial Hospital's Board of Trustees last night voted to move forward to bring to the public the concept of Memorial being part of a unified MaineHealth with a single consolidated governance model. Memorial now joins other MaineHealth member organizations in doing so.

While Memorial plans to hold a community forum on the topic in October, the board plans to continue its on-going due diligence process which began in 2016. Board President Laura Jawitz stated, "This is still a work in progress. We want to run this along a parallel path to give us time to do additional financial modeling."

Jawitz continued, "Before any final decisions are made, we need to hear from our community stakeholders. We believe we've found a balance that allows us to leverage our system resources to deliver care across our service area while maintaining significant local decision making, and we want to engage our community on that plan."

President & CEO Scott McKinnon added, "Our board takes this process very seriously. We are fortunate to have such a dedicated group of Trustees who have the best interests at heart for the health of our community."

The proposal under discussion would create a single, system-wide Board of Trustees for MaineHealth. It would also leave in place local boards that would retain significant responsibility for the hospital services and other care delivered in local communities.

Memorial is different than other MaineHealth members in that it is located in New Hampshire. This is important in that the regulatory oversight is much different in New Hampshire than in Maine. If the Board decides to proceed with the unification process, the NH Charitable Trust will review the proposed change to the hospital's governance structure.

The inability to deploy resources across the system has become a significant problem for MaineHealth's community hospitals such as Memorial in recent years, which is under increasing financial pressure because of changes in the way health care is being delivered.

"The good news," said Bill Caron, president of MaineHealth, "is that, overall, MaineHealth is in strong financial shape. We believe that MaineHealth is positioned, as a system, to deliver the right care in the right place at the right time for all our patients."

Still, while unifying MaineHealth members under a single budget overseen by a system Board of Trustees will strengthen local health services and help preserve community hospitals, the proposal has stirred thoughtful discussion with Memorial Hospital's board members. The new structure being considered leaves in place a strong role for local boards and includes safeguards aimed at making sure communities will continue to receive the services they need.

The governance proposal under consideration includes local oversight of care quality and the credentialing of doctors and other providers, a continued relationship with local donors, a defined role in the budget and planning process, and oversight of community health initiatives. The proposal also guarantees local representation on the system board for at least the first five years and requires any significant changes in local services be approved by 67 percent of the system board's members.

Memorial's community forum will be scheduled for October with details to follow. For more information about MaineHealth's unification dialogue visit www.mainehealth.org/about/unification.


  • Category: Health

Diet Detective: A guide to summer fruits

By Charles Platkin
Why: They are sweet, don't raise blood sugar levels and are very low in calories.
Health perks: One peach delivers 10 percent of the vitamin C you need and 2 grams of fiber. And peaches have a low glycemic load.
Nutrition: Serving size: one medium (2 2/3-inch diameter), calories 58, total fat 0.4g, total carbohydrate 14.3g, dietary fiber 2.2g, sugars 12.6g, protein 1.4g.
Seek out: According to one nutrition expert: "Make sure that the stem end is yellow or cream-colored. Also, look for a well-defined crease and a pleasingly sweet fragrance. They should be soft to the touch."
Avoid: Make sure that the peach doesn't have "green shoulders" around the stem, suggesting premature picking. A deep, red-brown color, softening of the fruit or shriveling of the skin at the stem indicates it's over-ripe. Never squeeze peaches: They bruise.
Storage: Don't store in the refrigerator or in sunlight. One of the better ways to ripen peaches is to place them in a brown paper bag, fold the top and leave them for a day or so.
Why: Low in calories, not too expensive and it's 92 percent water which quenches your thirst and fills you up on a hot summer day.
Health perks: Watermelon has 7.5 to 10 milligrams of the antioxidant lycopene (believed to guard against heart disease and some cancers) per cup. That's about 40 percent more than is found in raw tomatoes (cooked tomatoes have more). Its a good source of vitamins A and C, it and also contains potassium, vitamin B6 and thiamin. Plus, it has citrulline, an amino acid that may help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, stimulate the immune system and accelerate the healing of wounds.
Nutrition: Serving size: 1 cup, diced (152g), calories 46, total fat 0.2g, cholesterol 0mg, sodium 2mg, total carbohydrate 11.5g, dietary fiber 0.6g, sugars 9.4g, protein 0.9g.
Seek out: Firm, juicy, red flesh without white streaks and a rind free of cracks, bruises or mold. The seeds should be dark brown or black. According to James Parker, associate global produce coordinator for Whole Foods Market, Look for melons that have a uniform shape (not small on one end and larger on the other). Ripe fruit will have a slight give on the end opposite to the stem and a slight yellowing of the rind on the lightest part of the outside.
Tap the melon in the middle with your palm: If it's ripe, you should hear a hollow sound.
Avoid: Pale flesh, white streaks and whitish seeds (if you can peek inside). The rind should be free of bruises, soft spots or mold. And make sure there are no splits, veins, hollow pockets, dark red streaks or blood-red (as opposed to fire-engine-red) color.
Storage: According to chef Aliza Green, author of "Field Guide to Produce" (Quirk Books), ripe watermelon will keep best (for about five days) if cut up, covered with plastic wrapped and refrigerated.
Why: One-quarter of a melon (about 15 cantaloupe balls) has only 70 calories or so, and there is nothing like a sweet piece of cantaloupe on hot summer day.
Health Perks: It's low in calories and high in the antioxidant beta carotene, vitamins A and C and a good source of vitamins B6 and B3 (niacin), folate and potassium.
Nutrition: Serving size: 1/4 of a large melon (about 6 1/2 inches in diameter), calories 69, total fat 0.4g, cholesterol 0mg, sodium 33mg, total carbohydrate 16.6g, dietary fiber 1.8g, sugars 16g, protein 1.7g.
Seek out: Fragrant, symmetrical melons, heavy for their size, with a yellow or cream undertone and no bruises. Another indicator is the stem: If it still has one and it won't come off easily, chances are it's not ready to eat, says Parker. Additionally, the skin color between the netting should be yellowish-buff, yellowish-gray or pale yellow not green.
Avoid: According to Green, over-ripe cantaloupes have lumps or soft spots. She also suggests avoiding rock-hard or lopsided melons. Also, watch out for mold, which can indicate decay.
Storage: Uncut melons can be stored at room temperature for up to a week. Refrigerate cut melon in an airtight container for up to five days.
Why: Delicious, sweet and oh-so-low in calories.
Health Perks: Fifteen cherries have only 64 calories and more than 10 percent of the daily value for vitamin C. They are also rich in vitamin E, contain 2 grams of fiber and are a good source of potassium, magnesium, iron and folate.
Cherries contain a pigment called anthocyanin (responsible for their color), an antioxidant linked to a variety of health benefits including reduction of risk for heart disease and cancer. Additionally, cherries are one of the few food sources of melatonin, shown to aid in sleep.
Nutrition: Serving size: 15 cherries (102g), calories 64, total fat 0.2g cholesterol 0mg, Sodium 0mg, total carbohydrate 16.3g, dietary fiber 2.1g, sugars 13.1g, protein 1.1g.
Seek out: High-quality cherries are firm and dark red, with bright, lustrous, plump- looking surfaces and fresh-looking stems.
Avoid: Soft, shriveled or blemished cherries. Green also suggests avoiding dark or brittle stems.
Storage: Remove any that are soft or split, says Green. Then refrigerate. Check the fruit occasionally and remove any that have gone bad. You can freeze cherries (with or without pits) by rinsing and draining them thoroughly, spreading them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and placing them in the freezer.
Charles Platkin, Ph.D., is a nutrition and public health advocate and founder of DietDetective.com, and the director of the New York City Food Policy Center at Hunter College. Copyright 2017 by Charles Platkin. All rights reserved. Sign up for the free Diet Detective newsletter at www.DietDetective.com.
  • Category: Health