vOL. i, No. ii
“Providing Superior and Compassionate
healthcare to Our Community by raising the level of
health, HOZHO and quality of life”
Division of Planning and Logistics
AUGust 31 & SEPTember 1
NAVAJO NATION MUSEUM
roviding uperior and
to OUR COMMUNITY by
raising the level of health,
Hozho, and quality of
Information. Registration. Vendors. Advertising. Press. Up-Dates. Guest Speakers.Entertainment.
June Feature Artist: 248
Valonia Hardy, CCHO ol
Un esce it!
Ad re U
Chief Community Health Oﬃcer Ca
her work has been featured in the Award
Navajo Nation Museum and has won Nurses!
prizes at the Navajo Nation Fair.
she can be found on Flickr.com
Each of the Feature photos and ADS aNNO
in this edition were taken by Mrs. Hardy.
The Medical Imaging Department is pleased to announce that Tséhoot-
Please submit work to be featured Window
sooí Medical Center will now have an in-house radiologist.
on the web as well as in print. Rock HS
He will be here on Friday, April 22, 2011 from 8am to 5pm, every other
from 1300 to 1700, we will scheduling all diagnostic mammo, stereotac-
tic biopsy, and breast US.
Please call 8-8350 to schedule all appointments
A NEW consult is available via RPMS/EHR. This is the Traditional
Cultural Services (TCS) Consult.
This consult is to refer your patients who wish to have Traditional
Navajo Cultural Intervention and Education. Both Inpatient and
Outpatient patients can be referred to Traditional Cultural Services
The consults will be addressed by Mental Health Traditional Cultural
Mental Health Technician.
Workplace Support in Federal Law
Section 4207 of the Patient Protection and Aﬀordable Care Act (also
known as Health Care Reform), amended the Fair Labor Standards Act
(FLSA), or federal wage and hour law. The amendment requires
employers to provide reasonable break time and a private, non-
bathroom place for nursing mothers to express breast milk during the
workday, for one year after the child’s birth. The new requirements
948 became eﬀective when the Aﬀordable Care Act was signed into law on
March 23, 2010. Download the text of Section 4207 only.
Medical Center Directory: 928-729-8000
newsletter publishing contact:
Division of Planning and Logistics
Dr. Leland Leonard
Education is the best prevention tool, which will allow the people,
as a whole, to take responsibility of their health. TMC is currently
performing some of these tasks, with the goal of venturing into the
communities through telehealth.
TMC’s telehealth project will overcome barriers to healthcare,
such as transportation, wait times, and access to specialized care.
Obtaining funds for this project has started at TMC. TMC continues
to look for grants to supplement or supplant clinical gaps in
Yá’áteeh! services. To date, our largest funding request is being sought
through the Federal Communication Commission’s Rural Health
Greetings to staﬀ, patients and community members! It is a Care Pilot Program. Telehealth will enable TMC to provide addi-
pleasure and an honor to present to you, the Tséhootsooí tional and improved healthcare services to the 16
Medical Center’s (TMC) Chief Executive Oﬃcer’s June 2011 chapters/communities.
executive summary. In this edition of Healthy Winds there are
challenges and signiﬁcant accomplishments to report to you. In addition, improving patient care includes plans to pursue Fast
The main feature of this month’s news letter is Tséhootsooí Track Care (mainstream calls this urgent care), which will be built
near the emergency room. Patients will be seen in the emergency
Medical Center’s Fiscal Year -2010 Financial Audit Report.
room and/or fast track for needed medical services. Over the years,
Indian Health Services continued to use the emergency room for
In today’s health care business there are numerous challenges.
At TMC this is no exception; however, it is important that we non-emergent patient visits. Having a Fast Track Care program
deal with these challenges and overcome them. Throughout will allow emergent care in the appropriate setting. As a patient-
focused hospital, TMC continues to improve patient care.
the nation Americans are faced with Medicare and Medic-
aid funding cuts, including the State of Arizona, which One other noteworthy success story is the completion of the FY
recently proposed elimination of a majority of Medicaid services 2010 TMC Financial Audit, which was performed by Moss-Adams
for non-Indian and Indian beneﬁciaries, which was, in part, Accounting Firm. As a community-controlled and nonproﬁt entity,
concurred by the federal government. Under federal law, TMC has been in operation only one year and has attained an
though, Native American tribes of Arizona are supposed to “unqualiﬁed audit”. An unqualiﬁed audit thoroughly analyzes both
receive 100% pass through funding for Medicaid services. the internal systems of control, as well as all of the details in the
organization's books. Further, the unqualiﬁed audit is complete
Unfortunately, this is not the case; therefore, Arizona’s 22 without ﬁndings. This is an amazing feat; it took tremendous eﬀort
Tribes are requesting a waiver of Arizona’s decision to uphold and work by our ﬁnance department. We commend Mr. Daniel
this federal law. The tribes will be informed in the next few Johnson, Chief Finance Oﬃcer, and his accountants for this achieve-
weeks regarding the waiver request. TMC will diligently defend ment on behalf of the corporation.
the 100% pass through funding law, as 40% of TMC’s operating
funds come from Medicare and Medicaid collection for services. We are excited about TMC’s many accomplishments as we move
In the meantime, TMC continues to provide quality services to forward. As a team, TMC workers can succeed in improving health-
our patients. care for our patients. To this end, we must be vigilant and work
together to continue to move in the right direction. Fortunately,
As TMC grows and advances so will the services to our our status as a self-determined organization will allow us to venture
patients and community members. TMC has sought to collabo- out and explore other opportunities. As I have stated previously,
rate with the chapters/communities in promoting health and our greatest asset at TMC is the workers. On behalf of the board,
disease prevention. This approach will require aggressive we appreciate TMC employees for their dedication and commit-
education in the community. ment to the corporation.
“Opening Day” 5
If you would like to
feature your depart-
ment or program in
he Tséhootsooí Medical Center’s Well-
ness Program in collaboration with the Navajo a story, please submit an
article to ira.vandever@fdihb.
Nation’s Oﬃce of Youth Development is oﬀering org by the submission deadline.
Teeball and Softball. Funded by the Diabetes Please include your full name,
job title, department, email ad-
youth prevention grant, the Tee Ball dress, and article attachment.
Program is for youth between the ages of four
to six years old. The softball program is funded We welcome and encourage
informative department or
through the Lady Wildcats Softball program and program highlights, special in-
by the teams and parents, and is for girls terests related to the healthcare
between the age of six to 16 years old.
important to our community.
Submissions should be profes-
Hundreds of youth, parents, and community sionally written and meet the
members came out to the Fort Deﬁance Sports following criteria:
Complex on Saturday, May 14, 2011 to kick oﬀ * 500 words or less
the season with a celebration. * Microsoft Word format
*12 pt. font in Arial, Tahoma, or
Thunder Clan, a drum group from *Photos must be a minimum of
600 pixels wide and 600 pixels
Fort Deﬁance, sang an honor song for the young length (photos need not be
squared as long as both dimen-
athletes. According to Roxanne Marianito,
sions are 600 pixels or greater)
Fitness Specialist at TMC, the Teeball league has *Photo Release Form must ac-
96 players and the Softball league has 85 company pictures
players. She credits the success of the leagues * If there are any restrictions
to TMC, tribal programs and to the parents who on how a photo is to be used,
please note that at time of sub-
volunteer to raise money and to get their young mission.
athlete to the games.
In the best interest of the hospi-
The Boys and Girls Club of Fort Deﬁance, Oﬃce tal, the Division of Planning and
Logistics maintains the right
of Youth Development and Tséhootsooí to edit articles prior to publica-
tion unless prior restrictions are
Medical Center purchased the Teeball the Chief of Planning.
Team Jerseys while Softball players and their
parents sold raﬄe tickets to raise the money By submitting an article, you
needed to pay for their jerseys. Marianito says agree to let the article be ed-
this is the ﬁrst time a diabetes prevention grant ited, published and posted
under the TMC Healthy Winds
has funded a youth wellness program so she is Tséhootsooí Medical Center’s Wellness Program Newsletter.
very pleased. in collaboration with the Navajo Nation’s Oﬃce
of Youth Development is oﬀering Teeball and
Softball to the Community.
Division of Planning and Logistics
A Community Comes Together
“Without a sense of caring, there can be no sense of community” -Anthony Burgess
In the early morning of April 21, 2011, several community members from the Red Lake Chapter and towns-
people from Navajo, New Mexico assembled at the Red Lake Chapter House to register their names as volunteers, pick
up a supply of trash bags, and armored with gloves, dust masks, and bottled water set out to pick up
as much litter and trash as possible. By the end of day one, 45 people had registered and picked up trash in and
around the community. On the second day of the clean-up, April 22, 2011, more people came out to help in the eﬀort.
The areas of concentration were within the rights-of-way of Navajo Route 12, along old Red Lake Road (Navajo Route
112 toward Sawmill, Arizona and south toward Fort Deﬁance, Arizona), (along Route 31 toward Lake/Camp Asaayi, and
areas near Black Creek).
In fact, there were record numbers of participants-seventy-three volunteers came out to help.
Participants included young and old with roughly 20 or so students and around 10 or so senior citizens. came out. Two
local businesses/organizations also came out to help, Navajo Townsite Community Development Corporation and
Nations Gas Technologies, Incorporated. The local chapter Vice-President, Mr. Richard Bitsie and his family help to clean
the community on both days. Navajo Nation employees from Navajo Nation Environmental Protection Agency, Navajo
Nation Community Health Representatives, and Navajo Nation Solid Waste Management Program also came to help for
short periods of time.
Three large disposal bins (one 4-cubic yards and two 30-cubic yards) had been delivered and set up in the Red Lake
Chapter House parking lot as the central location for trash sorting and pick up. All three bins were ﬁlled to capacity
which totaled 100 cubic yards of trash, more than 100 tires were collected and approximately 1,000 pounds of metal
were separated and slated for recycling. The Red Lake-Navajo Community Action Group solicited help from local
businesses and organizations; the donations were gift certiﬁcates that were used toward drawings for
volunteers as an incentive to help pick up trash.
community clean-up days were successful
All in all, the . It brought together residents
from the town of Navajo and the rural members of Red Lake #18 Chapter. It was also a great example of successful
community building, community organization, and community action.
Submitted by TMC HPDP Program on behalf of the Red Lake Community Action Group
Division of Planning and Logistics
Division of Planning and Logistics
Macho as men may be, they need to take care of their
health. We see the hallways of the hospital populated by women and children
here for medical appointments, but very few men. Men seem to come to the
hospital because they have a cold, ﬂu, or some other immediate medical need like
a work-related injury.
…Macho, Macho Men….. Rarely do men come in for an annual physical
June is National Men’s exam which is understandable, but not acceptable. When asked about getting
Health Month! an annual exam they say, “It is embarrassing” or “I don’t think I need it”.
June is recognized as National Men’s Health Month to encourage men of all ages
to see your health care provider regularly to check for possible problems. Most
men who have high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease or cancer don't know
it or may deny they have problems. The only way to ﬁnd out is to have a regular
annual check-up. Most chronic diseases often do not produce any symptoms until
the disease becomes advanced. Even a simple screening test or an annual physi-
cal exam can detect diseases in the earliest stages.
Usually an annual physical exam for men includes: Blood pressure
screening, cholesterol screening, colon cancer screening, testicular and
prostate exam. Some of these screenings require a visit to the laboratory for
blood draws. Men can be safer, stronger, and healthier by taking daily steps and
getting routine check-ups. -
Here are some statistics about American Indian men:
• From 2003-2007, American Indian/Alaska Native men were 80% more
likely to have liver & Inﬂammatory Bowel Disease/cancer as non-Hispanic White
• American Indian/Alaska Native men are 1.8 times as likely to have stom-
ach cancer as non-Hispanic White men, and are over twice as likely to die from the
• American Indian/Alaska Native males’ death rates exceed those of Ameri-
can Indian/Alaska Native females for every age up to 75 years and for 6 of the 8
leading causes of death.
• Accidents, suicide, and homicide are epidemic among American
Indian/Alaska Native males.
• Males make 37.9% of all outpatient visits, compared with 62.1% for
Cancer in Native American men. Department of Health and Human Services,
Oﬃce of Minority Health. Retrieved May 26, 2011 from:
American Journal of Public Health 2003. The Health Status of American Indian and
Alaska Native Males. Retrieved May 26, 2011 from:
Division of Planning and Logistics
Telehealth bridges the gap for rural
healthcare ~D. Aquiar, Project Lead
One of the greatest obstacles to healthcare for Navajo families is transporta-
tion. The beautiful and vast lands of the 16 Chapters served by Tséhootsooí
Medical Center puts many miles between patients and the hospital. With
resources strained by gas prices at nearly $4.00 per gallon,
healthcare can fall to the bottom of the priority list for families. At Tséhootsooí
Medical Center, we recognize that transportation can be a challenge. To meet
preparing to install a large-
this challenge the hospital is
scale Telehealth network. The network will work to bring
healthcare closer to the rural communities of the Fort Deﬁance Agency.
Organized by the Planning and Logistic Division in conjunction with the Infor-
mation Technology Department, the project has successfully completed the
ﬁrst phase of network design program development. With technical assistance
provided by the University of New Mexico’s Telehealth and Cybermedicine
Research Center, a Request for Proposal has been released to implement the
digital infrastructure that will connect 16 Chapters through three hub sites to
the Tséhootsooí Medical Center.
This digital channel of communication, the Telehealth connection, will
have the ability to interact with patients at their local Chapter house which
would greatly decrease the miles between home and the hospital.
Working with the UNM and the Southwest Telehealth Access Grid, Tséhootsooí
Medical Center has joined a network of hospitals, medical science centers and
specialized care providers that can increase access to services that would have
otherwise required a trip to Albuquerque or Phoenix.
The Telehealth network at Tséhootsooí Medical Center will connect the 16
Chapter sites in the Service Unit with a secure, HIPPA compliant channel of
communication. The state-of-the-art network has been designed and devel-
oped by the Information Technology Department and uses a combination of
DSL, microwave and point-to-point or line-of-sight connections to perform
The Telehealth network will be a digital bridge between the Chapter communi-
ties and the Tséhootsooí Medical Center. The future is here now; and with
Telehealth Tséhootsooí Medical Center is further capable to provide superior
and compassionate healthcare to our community by raising the level of health,
Hózhó, and quality of life. We look forward to bringing healthcare closer to our
8 patients and increasing access to health services with the Telehealth technol-
ogy. Look for more to come in the fall of 2011.
The Navajo Nation Museum
Hwy 264 and Postal Loop Road
Window Rock, Arizona
8:30 a.m. –
Registration, Posting of Colors
9:00 a.m. –
Safety Brieﬁng w/Route Posting
9:15 a.m. –
Kick Stands up!
Return by Lunch Time.
Upon return, attend the confer-
ence program to learn more about
cancer and resources available to
the Navajo Nation.
4th Annual AzMN
Navajo Nation Cancer
Register online a All are welcome to our
www.azmyelomanetwork.org free conference at the
Navajo Nation Museum.
Registration ……8-9 am.
Program…………9 am - 4:30pm
Box lunch included for all regis-
adVERTISE WITH uS
$15 per bike or vehicle
h c “HONOR HISTORY,
CELEBRATE LIFE...” h c
o e o e
n l n l
o e o e
r b r b
hi a hi a
s t s t
t e t e
r l r l
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Professionals (928) 729-8000 www.tmctr.org
(928) 729-8000 www.tmctr.org
(928) 729-8000 www.tmctr.org
INspire “What I liked was the
interesting careers that you
8th never knew about and you
actually ﬁnd yourself
1st Annual Treaty Day Celebration in...
Tséhootsooí , NN
Tséhootsooí Medical Center encountered a familiar friend in the celebra-
hese are just a few of the comments made by 8th tion of sovereignty. Sovereignty for the Navajo has been deﬁned in a
single Treaty between the US Government and the Navajo Tribe of
grade students at Tséhootsooí Middle School after they Indians. Which has, in turn, deﬁned a Culture, a People...The People.
attended a Career Day sponsored by the Tséhootsooí Medical
Center on May 3, 2011. More than 60 people represented 45 diﬀer- Never before has a document been so important to the Navajo People.
ent professions at the day-long event which was held at the Never before has a single word held so much HOPE. And never before has
Window Rock High School Fieldhouse. the Community of Tséhootsooí celebrated this document and state of
Kate Porterﬁeld, Physician Assistant at TMC, says she ﬁrst pitched
the idea to school counselors four years ago and as a means to “For many years we have been struggling to step out of this cage that we
keep ourselves in. We love to blame. We love to criticize. But, not very
“combat the large dropout rates of many people are providing solutions. What I saw today was a lot of
high school students.” She says the ﬁrst year’s capable people putting the pieces together to ﬁx these problems,” said
event was small and held in the school cafeteria but the next year it Virgina Brown, who just happened to come across the event.
needed a bigger venue and has been held in the Fieldhouse since.
On Tuesday, June the 1st, TMC engaged the Community in an act of
TMC programs and departments set up interactive booths where supporting healthy lifestyles in an extremely unhealthy Community.
students were shown many things including how to read x-rays, Poverty, Mal-Nutrition, Chronic Illness, and Mental Illnesses plague this
how to draw blood from a fake arm, calculate sugar content in small Region of the Navajo Nation, which also encompasses the Navajo
popular drinks, and what ﬁve pounds of fat looks and feels like. Nation Capital, Window Rock.
The Navajo Nation Police Department demonstrated through the “All of these (illnesses) can be traced back to the time before the Treaty of
1868 was signed. They are, all, associated with the Cultural Trauma
use of“dRuNK gOgGLeS” how diﬃcult it can
suﬀered from years and years of Murder, Rape, Hate, Horror and, as a
result, we have the responsibility to correct the past,” said Dr. Leonard.
be to walk when someone has had to many alcoholics drinks. The
goggles showed students how one loses control of their balance
Dr. Leonard continued, “This begins with Health, every aspect, MIND,
and body when they are under the inﬂuence of alcohol and how
BODY, SPIRIT. And unfortunately monetary assistance is required. But,
dangerous that is.
most importantly is the engaging the Community members and Leaders
to challenge themselves to contribute to the Paradigm shift that is taking
For information about the annual event contact Kate Porterﬁeld
place. We are involved in all of these battles and found it necessary to join
eﬀorts with the Community in this ﬁght.”
(Cont. p. 14)
Division of Planning and Logistics
TMC Board of Directors:
*Caleb Roanhorse , President *Roy B. Dempsey, Vice President *Leland Anthony, Secretary *Dr. Raymond Reid, Treasurer*
*Martin Ashley *Jerry Freddie *Tim Goodluck *Martin Begay *Lorraine Nelson *Elmer L. Milford*
Guess the Font
Tséhootsooí Medical Center’s Pediatric clinic
is participating in the national non-proﬁt organization ? Size????
Submit guess to:
Reach Out And Read (ROAR) and email@example.com
winner will receive new
has been since 2001. ROAR supports literacy for TMC’s
patients and their families by distributing new books to merchandise...
children during each of their Well Child Visits. From the ﬁrst
visit after birth and at each visit the child is given a new book. can include: polo, vest, scrubs, hard
drives, and much more.
6 to 9
By the age of 5 years old each child will own
books, a small personal library.
This year TMC’s Board of Directors met a matching grant -
from the Reading Is Fundamental organization which
allowed the expenditure of $12,000 on new books for
the children of our community. The Pediatric and Family
Practice staﬀ is excited and overjoyed to give away new
books and to talk to children and families about reading.
JOIN OUR TEAM!!!
Between July and January 2010 approximately 2,300 AILABLE
www.tmctr.org (928) 729-8000
books were given away.
Accounts Receivable Manager
Adult Care Administrator
TMC thanks the TMC Board of Directors for their generous Biomed Equipment Technician III
contribution and support, the General Service Department Chief Audiologist
Chief Of Pediatrics
for helping house and distribute the large shipment and
thanks the entire staﬀ in Pediatric and Family Practice who Lead Nurse Midwife
Medical Laboratory Aide
contribute to and keep this great program running.
Outpatient Coding Coordinator
Public Health Nurse (Level II)
Public Health Nurse III & IV
Registered Nurse (Various Positions)
Michael Tutt, M.D.
Dr. Leland Leonard
Adult Medicine Clinic
Division of Planning and Logistics
TSÉHOOTSOOÍ MEDICAL CENTER
OFFICIALS WORK TO SAVE
MEDICAID SERVICES “Currently, TMC has
~Ken White, Jr.
TMC administrators are working tirelessly
to save funding and services provided by
the Federal Medicaid Program which is
above: TMC oﬃcials (Leland Anthony-TMC Board, patients.”
Ken White, Jr.-Legislative Liaison, Dr. Leland
being cut by States. Dr. Leland Leonard, Leonard-CEO, & Roy Dempsey- TMC Board) wait
CEO and Ken White Jr., Legislative Liaison for a meeting with AZ AHCCCS oﬃcials
are meeting with state, federal, and tribal
Leonard and White met with CMS
counter the attack
oﬃcials to TMC lost $2.1 million in Medicaid Director Cynthia Mann, in Wash-
reimbursement from October 1, 2010 to
on Medicaid Medicare March 30, 2011. TMC projects that it will
ington, D.C. on March 9, 2011. They
submitted a position paper that describes
dollars and services. lose an additional $2.7 million in the
remainder of this ﬁscal year. Navajo Area
the impact of the Medicaid beneﬁt reduc-
tions and to support the AHCCCS waiver
The Federal Medicaid Program is deﬁned Indian Health Service is expected to lose
as an Entitlement Program which means at least $20 million, and the Phoenix Area
that an eligible individual is entitled to Indian Health Service will lose $34 million
receive health care services provided by in Medicaid reimbursements this ﬁscal Additionally, TMC informed CMS of its
the Medicaid program. Currently, TMC year. intention to develop a demonstration
has approximately 17,000 Medicaid These cuts are occurring despite federal project with Arizona, New Mexico, and
eligible patients. The majority of these CMS to protect services, funding, and
law which states that Indian Health patient care.
patients are eligible for the State of
Service and Public Law 93-638 facilities
Arizona’s Medicaid program called
receive 100% federal funding for services A meeting was convened by TMC with
Arizona Health Care Cost Containment
provided to Medicaid eligible patients. CMS, AHCCCS, and New Mexico Medicaid
Since the State of Arizona does not oﬃcials in Phoenix, Arizona on May 16,
provide state funding for services provided 2011 to further discuss the proposed
On October 1, 2010, the State of by I.H.S. and P.L. 93-638 facilities, tribal demonstration project. The project
Arizona began reducing Medic- and I.H.S. oﬃcials are advocating to the proposes to give direct funding to P.L.
aid beneﬁts, eligibility thresh- Centers for Medicare and Medicaid 93-638 and I.H.S. facilities rather than
Services (CMS) to exempt these facilities going through state governments.
olds, and rates of reimburse- from beneﬁt reductions.
ment. This is due to Arizona’s $1.5 This approach is being called “The Fort
billion deﬁcit. Cuts to AHCCCS are CEO Leonard stressed the importance of Deﬁance Plan for a 51st State” and further
expected to be around $500 million. this funding law ”the 100% pass through discussions by tribal and I.H.S. advocates
Included in these beneﬁt reductions are means the funds come from the feds to on this direct funding approach are
podiatry, dental care, well child exams, states and onto the American Indian Tribes planned. “This is a critical time for the
and physical therapy services. where there are tremendous health care Indian Health care network. We cannot let
needs. Our Navajo patients need the our patients down and must advocate to
AHCCCS made more reductions on April services and our medical professionals can the fullest extent possible for the current
1, 2011 where provider rates of reimburse- provide the care needed at TMC.” and future well-being of the TMC,”
ment were cut by 5% for inpatient and White said.
outpatient hospitals, dental fees, emer- In January, 2011 tribes and I.H.S urged
gency and non-emergency transporta- AHCCCS oﬃcials to submit a waiver For more information on this subject, please
tion. They also reduced long term care request to CMS to exempt tribes and I.H.S. contact Dr. Leland Leonard, CEO or Mr. Ken
rates of reimbursement by another 2.5%; from beneﬁt reductions. CMS has yet to White Jr., Legislative Liaison, at 928-729-
the same amount cut in October, 2010. respond to the waiver request. 8000.
When it comes to health care, you have options.
you have options.
At Tsehootsooi Medical Center, we understand
that life shouldn’t be restricted to a single
choice. With beauty all around us, we embrace
the practices of both modern and traditional
medicines to better assist you and your health
In addition to our state-of-the-art medical
facilities, we also have an on-site hogan, sweat
lodge and traditional plant garden.
Diné Elder Health Care &
Legal Information Conference (Cont. from p. 10)
Lucinda Martin is a petite woman with a strong voice and an even stronger laugh. TMC began the Day with a parade followed by a free BBQ,
Her strength resonates to her work; to her mission which is to bring awareness to the which featured a local band, Smokin Guns, and Ernie
needs and issues that impact one of our most vulnerable community members- the Tsosie and the 49 Laughs Comedy Crew. Senator John
elderly. She led the planning and organizing of the annual Diné Elder Health Care Pinto acted as Grand Marshall of the Entire event. The
conference for the past eight years. Navajo Code Talker and US Senator graced the crowd with
his humble presence and Hope for the future of the
Martin who is the Chief of Medical Social Services at Tséhootsooí Medical Center says Navajo People and also recognized a former classmate of
“the goal of the Diné Elder Health Care Conference is to discuss and bring awareness his, whom attended the boarding school, which has
to the issues which commonly aﬀect Senior Citizens.” Some of those issues she says created the Ghost Town-like atmosphere at the entrance
to Blue Canyon. He spoke of the original Code Talkers
are not health related but can impact an elderly person’s health and
being hauled oﬀ by bus to Tt. Pendelton, San Diego from
wellbeing. the very spot that he spoke.
These issues and topics took center stage at the three day Diné Elder Health Care & Each speaker brought the topic of discussion back to the
Legal Information Conference which was held at the Navajo Nation Museum on May word “sovereignty”. Politicians, Professionals, Law
16 through the 18, 2011. Navajo Nation Senior Citizen Centers within TMC’s service Enforcement, and Entertainment took a backseat to the
area transported their elderly community members to the conference where on the testimony of a number of Community Members. They
ﬁrst day they were treated to a moving tribute by Miss Central Navajo Marlyssa Jim. spoke of the past and struggles and sacriﬁces endured by
In her song she thanks her grandparents for their teachings and vows to honor them the Ancestors of the “People”. All people.
by living her life “in a good, positive, and balanced Diné way.”
It was not a Navajo struggle that was being discussed. It
The ﬁrst day titled Elder Health Care included topics on Mental Status was the human condition, status and and future. It was a
Change, Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Financial Exploitation, Healthy Eating, Exercise practical approach to solving the problems that plague
and Fitness, Fall Prevention, Home Safety, and Budgeting. Also presented was the most of America....The People with the Problems spoke
topic of Advance Directive and Durable Power of Attorney, which breaks the taboo about the Problems and those who had the means to
that Navajos do not talk about death. TMC’s Home Based Care Program received begin to ﬁx the problems sat back and took notes.
national and international attention in January, 2011 when the New York Times
published a story about the Home Based Care Program’s success in breaking the It was comforting. It was simple. It was a start. June 1st
barriers to talking about death. marked the ﬁrst day of activities. The event will conclude
on Sunday June 5. A Rodeo sponsored by AIRCA encom-
passes the weekend, as do POW WOW and Gourd
The second day was dedicated as Caregiver Day and focused on the people Dancing.
who provide care to elders. This does not include just professionals but also family
members who chose to take on the role of caregiver to an elder. The caregivers were TMC will also participate in each of the Week’s Activities.
presented with topics such as Medication Management, Breach of Judiciary Order- The Division of Community Health will be present at the
Elder Abuse, Wellness, Fitness, Traditional Cooking, and a panel discussion between Treaty Festivities. TMC is also providing First Aide Support
provide home based care businesses. throughout the week, monetary donations have been
made to help feed the crowds, keep them cool and also to
The ﬁnal day focused on legal issues and was hosted by the DNA Legal Services. Staﬀ make sure that everyone is safe and healthy.
from DNA presented on topics such as Co-Signing a Loan, Identity Theft, Reposses-
sion, Consumer Rights, Wills, Power of Attorneys, Public Beneﬁts such as Food Plans are already being made for next year’s 2nd Annual
Stamps and Social Security, and Elder Abuse. Treaty Day Celebration.
The annual conference is held by TMC and in collaboration with Navajo Nation
programs, DNA Legal Services, and Home Based Care businesses. It is held at the
Navajo Nation Museum. Martin says it’s important to keep the conference on the
reservation “We want to draw our elders in and having it anywhere else would not For MORE info and actual
accomplish that.” Treaty of 1868
For more information on the Diné Elder Health Care & Legal Information visit:
Conference contact Lucinda Martin at TMC 928-729-8000.
traditional teaching and evidenced based
Tsehootsoi Medical Center has begun the process of becoming a Breastfeeding is the greatest gift that you can
Baby Friendly Hospital. This involves Ten Steps developed by the give your baby. A nursed child is given a posi-
World Health Organization. These steps have been shown to tive connection and knowledge of the surrounding
increase the number of mothers able to successfully breastfeed their world. These children are also strong in body, mind
children. and spirit. A breastfed baby will always be with the
mother, no matter where he or she goes in life. It is
this initial connection that directs a child to walk
Breastfeeding helps create a healthy community by decreas- with beauty all around.
ing the burden of disease. It protects the young from infectious
disease and helps them develop strong bodies. Studies show that As we walk with our babies, we are walking the
breastfed children are likely to be a healthy weight and receive earth. We are walking for two people, so walk a
protection against obesity and diabetes. good path. Everything you see is teaching your
baby what the earth is about. Really look at the
During the ﬁrst long walk breast milk was available for the babies and trees, the hills, the ﬂowers, the sky, everything. As
helped the people survive. It is also a way the nation can survive the you walk give thanks for all of this beauty. Every-
second long walk of diabetes. thing you absorb becomes a part of the knowledge
you feed your baby. This all turns into the sacred
The late Annie Kahn shared these traditional teaching at the Lacta- liquid we call milk. We call it Peace.
tion Management seminar July 15, 1999.
For more information on the Diné Elder
Health Care & Legal Information Confer-
ence contact Lucinda Martin at TMC 928-
PREPARING KIDS FOR 729-8000.
Family Fun Day promotes importance of
children’s early years
WINDOW ROCK – The First Things First Navajo Nation First Things First’s mission is to make sure every child in
Regional Partnership Council invites children and parents to Arizona comes to their ﬁrst day of kindergarten healthy and
enjoy a day of fun and learning at their 2nd Annual Family prepared to learn. Getting children ready for school
Fun Day, Saturday June 11th, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (DST) at the means more than packing their lunches, ﬁlling their back-
Navajo Nation Museum in Window Rock. packs, and getting them to the bus on time. In fact, the job
of helping children succeed in school starts the day they’re
The event features fun and interactive activities for children born. FTF programs and money provide children with the
that help stimulate their intellectual, physical, and social tools they need to start out on the right path so they can be
development. Representatives from community programs successful in school and beyond.
will be available to oﬀer information about how parents can
support their child’s early learning and health. For more information on Family Fun Day, or any First Things First
initiatives, please contact FTF at 928-810-4306. Stay connected with
Engaging children early is important, as 80% of their FTF on their website at http://www.azftf.gov
brain development happens before age 3. The connections
they make during this time can lay the foundation for a
Contact: Memarie Tsosie
lifetime. Supporting children’s early years with more interac-
tion and positive learning experiences makes them more
likely to perform better in school; have higher graduation
rates; and attend college.
The Get Out And Live event
will run from 1pm–5pm on the
6/14/11 Navajo Redlake, NM
Navajo Chapter House
6/21/11 Fort Deﬁance, AZ
Ofﬁce of Youth Development
6/28/11 St. Michaels, AZ
7/14/11 Nahata’Dziil, AZ
Project G.O.A.L. provides health
education, nutrition education, and
physical activity to prevent youth obesity
A Free event for Children aged 5 to 18,
registration for each child required at
Lana Dobson, RN (928) 729-8474