How Ironic

On June 10, when Humboldt County experienced its largest mass casualty incident ever, our CEO Jim Parrish and our Director of EMS Pat Songer were en route to Hawaii. No, it wasn't a vacation trip, although I'm sure they wish it was! Jim and Pat were on their way to the annual Western Region Flex Conference, which was hosted by the Hawaii State Office of Primary Care and Rural Health. They were asked, about six months ago, to make a presentation on Humboldt General Hospital's innovations in rural hospital quality and performance improvement. The conference gives participants the chance to hear about "best practice" success stories with regard to Critical Access Hospitals in the region, especially with regard to preparedness in large planned or unplanned mass events, like Burning Man. But the irony of it is that while Jim and Pat were on their way to discuss these best practices during a powerpoint presentation, the real deal--a mass event where those best practices were being put into action--was underway in Humboldt County. It was certainly an honor for Jim and Pat to be asked to present at that conference, but the real honor was when they received word that everyone at home had done exactly what they were supposed to do in terms of "best practices." What a way to begin a presentation in Hawaii, by showing the exceptional efforts that happened just days before in a small, rural town in north-central Nevada called Winnemucca.