In order to control the spread of the flu, we ask people who have any flu symptoms to not visit patients at Hutchinson Health.


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First Baby of 2020 Noelle

Early every January, the first births help welcome the new year. But when Noelle Marie Evenson was born the evening of Jan. 1, she helped usher in a little extra.
The daughter of Alissa Snook and Joel Evenson of Hector was the first baby of the 2020 decade born in Hutchinson. The young girl born at 9:48 p.m. weighed in at 6 pounds and 12 ounces and was 20.5 inches tall.
“She’s healthy. She’s so good,” Alissa said as she held her daughter this past Friday morning in a quiet suite of Hutchinson Health’s BirthCare Center.

Noelle’s name was picked from a list compiled to reflect the winter season.

“It was the prettiest one to me,” Alissa said. “And it was one we could agree on.”
Noelle’s birth was not without its challenges.
“She had a rough pregnancy,” Joel said.
“I was very sick,” Alissa said. “And as far as delivery it went pretty smooth. Her (Noelle’s) heart rate was just dropping during labor and we had to have a (cesarean) section.”
Alissa, who works at Hutchinson Health, picked the hospital’s birth center because of her familiarity.
“I felt comfortable with the staff,” she said. “And they have really good doctors.”
The couple has lived in Hector where Joel farms for the past three years, along with Noelle’s 19-year-old sister, Izabelle. They came together seven years ago thanks to the encouragement of friends.
“We’ve just always known each other,” Evenson said.

“I’d say he asked me out,” Alissa said. “It feels like a long time ago now, but it was probably him. I’m just too quiet.”
Alissa said she knew Evenson was a keeper when she saw how good of a dad he is.
“And he’s a really hard working and nice man,” she said.
Alissa was on her feet Thursday, and by the time gifts from local businesses arrived Friday to celebrate the first Hutchinson baby of the year, the family was eager to be home where a support network awaited.
“Joel’s family lives in Hector, so they are very close by,” Alissa said, noting grandparents, aunts and cousins had reached out. “They have already offered their services.”
Joel expects Noelle might end up helping with farm work one day, but that won’t come for a few years. Right now, he and Alissa are just excited to raise their daughter.


Dr. Brian Bonte Obituary

It is with a heavy heart that we share that Dr. Brian Bonte passed away early this morning. Dr. Bonte worked in so many areas of Hutchinson Health. His commitment and dedication to his patients and the Hutchinson community are beyond measure.

Arrangement details can be found on the Hantge Funeral chapel website.

Just this past week we recognized Dr. Bonte for his years of service to the Medical Staff of Hutchinson Health with a portrait in the front hospital lobby. Please join us in keeping Dr. Bonte’s family in your thoughts and prayers.

Shout out to Generous Employees

Helping spread Christmas cheer this season our employees have donated toys to the McLeod County Social Services Center; by purchasing gifts for children across McLeod County. It will certainly make a lot of little ones happy throughout our communities. Making Good Happen all year long. Thank you to our employees generosity.
toys in boxes for Christmas presents for children

Thanksgiving Tidbits

Thanksgiving is one of the most anticipated meals of the year, so make it memorable for the right reasons. Follow these food safety tips.

Plan Ahead and Make Space in the Refrigerator.

If buying a fresh turkey purchase it 1 to 2 days before you plan to cook it and place it in the refrigerator, on a tray that can catch any juices that may leak until you are ready to cook.  Frozen turkeys should be thawed in the refrigerator.  Allow 24 hours for every 4-5 pounds

Don’t wash the turkey

Washing the turkey can splash bacteria up to 3 feet contaminating countertops, towels and other food!  Keep raw turkey separated from all other foods and use separate cutting boards, plates and utensils. Wash hands, surfaces, and utensils between each food prep.

Use a Food Thermometer

The only way to determine if your turkey is cooked to the correct internal temperature is to use a food thermometer.  A whole turkey should be checked in 3 locations: the innermost part of the thigh and wing, and the thickest part of the breast. Your thermometer should read 165° F in all 3 places. If it doesn’t continue cooking.

Properly Store Leftovers

Promptly refrigerate leftovers by cutting turkey into smaller slices and placing in shallow containers. Use leftover turkey within 3-4 days or freeze. Reheat thoroughly to 165° F.

If the holiday meal becomes overwhelming USDA has a toll-free hotline open on Thanksgiving Day from 8am to 2pm ET, with live food safety experts available to help in English and Spanish. Call the USDA Meat & Poultry Hotline at 1-888-MPHotline or (1-888-674-6854).  Happy Thanksgiving!

Sources: USDA and The Journal of the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics.

And with all of that leftover turkey here’s a recipe to help.


White Turkey Chili

(Serves 8)

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/4 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 4 cups cooked turkey, chopped
  • 2 cans (15.5 oz.) Great Northern beans, drained
  • 2 cans (11 oz.) corn, undrained
  • 1 can (4 oz.) chopped green chilies
  • 4 cups turkey or chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin


Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion and celery, cook and stir 2-3 minutes. Place all ingredients in a large saucepan (at least 4 quarts). Stir well. Cover and cook about 15 minutes over medium heat stirring

occasionally until thoroughly heated.


Patient Testimony for our new online account

Have you heard we have a new online medical record account? It can save you time making appointments and scheduling care. Go to our website to create a new account.
A patient recently shared this:
“I received a letter instructing me on how to create a new online medical record account with Hutchinson Health. I followed the directions and still had trouble setting it up. I called the web support number and they were fabulous at helping me through the steps. In less than five minutes I was able to get it created and start using it. Love the new features and ease of using this new record.”~ Jeannette

Why Vaccinate? It’s Important from Dr. Leah Willson

“In my 33 years of practice, including time in medical missions, I have seen cases of nearly all of the vaccine-preventable illnesses and their complications. These are serious and often life-threatening diseases. They still occur with high frequency in many countries that are only a plane trip away. I have a really hard time understanding why some parents are willing to put their children at risk by not vaccinating–but I guess vaccines have been so effective that many US parents have never watched a child suffering from one of these illnesses.

Any medicine, and any vaccine can cause side effects. Complications from vaccines are reported and carefully tracked. However, in my 33 years of pediatric practice, giving 100,000+ vaccine doses, I have not had a single serious, life-threatening, or disabling vaccine reaction occur. Most reactions are minor and self-limited, and the majority of children have no side effects whatsoever. There have been multiple well-done studies which show beyond a reasonable doubt that there is no connection between vaccines and autism, SIDS, or any chronic medical condition.”~ Dr. Leah Willson, pediatrician

November is Sweet Potato Awareness Month

November is Sweet Potato Awareness Month! This month the holidays go into full swing and what better way to celebrate than with loads of hearty, delicious, and… wait for it… HEALTHY food! That’s right, sweet potatoes fall into all of those categories.  Although people often think of sweet potatoes as a Thanksgiving side dish, these root vegetables are available year-round. They’re becoming more popular too: sweet potato consumption rose by nearly 42% between 2000 and 2016, according to the USDA. (

The many varieties of sweet potatoes belong to the morning glory family, Convolvulaceae. The skins range in hue from almost white to dark red, with a few types sporting purple skin. Those unusual varieties may also have lavender or purple flesh. But the most common flesh colors range from white to deep orange.

When cooked, some sweet potato varieties stay firm, while others soften. These “soft” varieties are often referred to as yams. But true yams (from the African word nyami) belong to an entirely different plant family related to lilies and grasses.

Here are some of the nutritional facts about this delicious vegetable.

* Sweet potatoes are a great source of vitamins C and A. Both nutrients are important for immune system support, and maintaining healthy skin, vision, and organs.

*They are full of antioxidants and other nutrients.

*Sweet potatoes are anti-inflammatory, which lowers the risk of nearly every chronic disease, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

* They help support weight loss. They are so filling, it doesn’t even feel like you’re trying to slim down!

Easy recipe: Pierce sweet potato skins several times with a fork. Place on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake at 400° F until tender, about 45 minutes.

So, whether you’re baking, mashing, or folding… or cutting it into chunks with ground cinnamon sprinkled on top… or enjoying the classic sweet potato pie… It won’t be difficult for you to celebrate Sweet Potato Month!



Orange & Sweet Potato Pork Chops


This recipe is a great source of protein and the sweet potatoes add important vitamin A. Thanks to the orange and cinnamon flavoring, you may be able to skip the salt entirely.

Once you’ve assembled this main dish, you’re free to do something else while it is baking. Read the paper, take a walk, put in a load of wash or just relax! I had company the night I prepared this and it was easy to toss in an extra pork chop and add another sweet potato.

Makes: 2 servings


2 pork chops

1 sweet potato (peeled)

1/2 orange (sliced)

1 dash cinnamon (optional)

1 dash salt (optional)

1 dash black pepper (optional)



1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. In a medium skillet, brown pork chops in a small amount of oil.

3. Cut sweet potato into 1/2-inch slices.

4. Place meat and sweet potato slices in a baking dish and top with orange slices; sprinkle with seasonings if desired.

5. Cover and bake for 1 hour until meat is tender. Pork is safely cooked when it has been heated to 145 degrees F, followed by a 3 minute rest.


Nutrition Facts: Calories, 270; Calories from Fat, 100; Total Fat, 11g; Saturated Fat, 4g; Trans Fat, 0g; Cholesterol, 65 mg; Sodium, 85mg; Total Carbohydrate, 17g; Dietary Fiber, 3g; Sugars, 6g; Protein, 25g.

Good Bye Excellian Hello Epic

Today is the Day!!
Change is always hard but the new system we are implementing will be an upgrade for our patients and staff. To bring a sense of humor to the event our Orthopedic Rehab Staff held a quick funeral for our old system with a grave site of all the instruction manuals that have been our guiding principles for over 6 years. We are NOW Epic and ready to rock!

people around a head stone and grave filled with manuals from old system.

Why Vaccinate? It’s Important

“By adulthood at least 90% of people have been infected by Human papilloma virus [HPV].  HPV is the leading cause of cervical, vulvar, penile, anal, and throat cancers.  Anyone who gets infected has a risk of developing cancer.  Often this infection has no symptoms.  Women can be screened for cervical HPV infection with Pap Smears but there is no screening for men.  We have seen at least a 50% decrease in HPV infections since starting this vaccine.  This is the ONLY vaccine that prevents cancer.  I have never seen a serious adverse event following this vaccine but I have seen people die from the cancers it causes.”~Dr. Tiffany Trenda, pediatrician

Why Vaccinate? It’s Important #3

“I had chickenpox (varicella) when I was eight years old, before the first vaccine was available. I vividly recall lying in bed, scratching, and feeling miserable. Many people have had chickenpox, and most of them are “lucky,” as I was. When it is mild, varicella causes fever, achiness, cough, and an itchy rash. However, when most severe, varicella can cause pneumonia, encephalitis, and sepsis. These are conditions that can lead to hospitalization, and unfortunately, death. Additionally, those who are unvaccinated and acquire chickenpox naturally are at higher risk for shingles later on in life. I see chickenpox in unvaccinated children every year in my practice. It is still a real, and completely unnecessary threat. I am very grateful that there is vaccine available to protect my patients and my own children.“~ Dr. Erin Knudtson, pediatrician