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IVIontana State Library



30 dphh

anuary 2000


MAY 1 2000


3 0864 0016 2557 6


'-MONTANA STATE LIBRAr. _ —rwu- i r ll o n r •

1515 [£. 6th AVE. Department of Public Health & Human Services


January 2000

Employee Survey Results Are In

Responses to three individual questions in the recent DPHHS
employee survey provide a great reminder of why we are
employed and illustrate that employees believe in the mission
of helping others.

Of 55 overall questions, the following three received the
strongest positive responses on a scale of one (strongly agree)
to five (strongly disagree):

♦ I believe the work done in my bureau benefits the public
(1.55 average score)

♦ Work done in my division benefits the public (1.69 average

♦ Policies, practices and operations support a customer focus
in my work area/unit (1.92).

When asked whether employees liked working for DPHHS, the
overall score was 1.76, again strongly on the supportive side.

In fact, of the 55 questions asked, only seven exceeded the
"neutral" rating of 3, with 3.35 being the highest average; that
was in response to the question, "My division administrator
understands my job." The answer to one question suggests
opportunity; most employees agreed with the statement,
"There are more efficient ways in which my Division could
meet goals."

Overall, 925 employees completed the voluntary survey, or
33.2 percent of the 2,786 DPHHS employees.

"I am very pleased overall with the results and am personally
proud that our employees have such a strong commitment to
public service," Director Laurie Ekanger said. "It's certainly no
surprise that DPHHS workers exemplify our mission of helping
and serving."

Ekanger has reviewed all the surveys and several hundred
written comment that employees could have detached and
sent directly to her.

"Comments to me were extremely thoughtful and
constructive," she said. "Some general themes I've noticed in
the surveys and comments include workload issues in some
areas, processes that are too complex, and need for better
communication with field offices and residential treatment

Once division administrators finish reviewing responses for
their specific areas, they will meet with Ekanger to identify
strengths and weaknesses and develop objectives for
maintaining positive aspects and improving target areas.

A sampling of selected survey results appears on
pages 4 and 5. For more information, call Nan
LeFebvre at 444-5622.


Birth Defects Prevention Month

Cen/ical Cancer Month

Eye Care Month

January 6

Breast & Cervical Health Program
Case Management Workgroup
8 am - 4 pm — Rm C209A, Cogswell BIdg.
Contact; Sue Miller, 444-3624

January 11

Governor's Advisory Council on Tobacco Use


Location: TBA

Contact: Janet Kenny 444-5361

January 17

HOLIDAY for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

January 19

National Teleconference on "Race, Class & Health"
11 :30 am - 1 :30 pm - Rm 307, 1 1 1 N Sanders
Contact: Melanie Reynolds 444-4474

January 20-21

Montana Vocational Rehabilitation Council
Location; Helena Super 8
Contact; Peggy Williams 444-4184

January 21

MT Immunization "Every Child By Two" meeting
Noon, Room C209, Cogswell Building
Contact; Marci Eckerson, 444-1805

January 24

8 pm - PBS Broadcast on Building Senior Housing
Contact; 1-800-332-2272

January 31 - February 3

Series of Public Meetings — Comprehensive
Tobacco Use Prevention Plan — Kalispell,
Missoula, Great Falls, Glendive, Billings
Times and Locations: TBA
Contact; Janet Kenny 444-5361

February 3

Breast & Cervical Health Program
Case Management Workgroup
8 am - 4 pm — Rm 207, 1 1 1 N. Sanders
Contact; Sue Miller, 444-3624

February 7

Breast & Cervical Health Program Medical
Advisory Board

Noon - 1 30 pm — Rm C209B. Cogswell BIdg
Contact; Sue Miller, 444-3624

February 8-9
I Native American Advisory Council
\ Contact; Kathy Deserly 406 444-9748

A Message From the Director: PUBLIC HEALTH

Laurie Ekanger
OPHHS Director

The recent events in Libby
involving asbestos and the
diseases it causes has
resulted in some people
asking, "What is 'public
health,' and how does it
function to keep us safe and

Living in the United States
permits many of us to take
our public health system for
granted and not realize the many things it does.
I am sure that sometime today you will turn on
a faucet to get a drink of water, go to the
bathroom and flush a toilet, enter your kitchen
to cook something or go out to eat. These are
things we do every day without second
thought, taking for granted their safety.

Yet, maintaining safe drinking water, a
functioning sanitation system and a safe food
supply are all part of our dynamic public
health system. The public health system is
also involved in educating people about safe
health practices, such as avoiding tobacco,
maintaining low cholesterol, eating at least
five helpings of fruits or vegetables daily, and
getting plenty of exercise.

Public health activities also include providing
safe work sites by working with employers,
and insuring a safe environment through
testing and maintaining standards.
Emergency medical services, surveillance for
communicable diseases, the provision of
immunizations to stop preventable diseases
and making healthcare accessible to under-
served people are also part of what your
public health system does.

Public health systems operate on three levels:
local, state and federal. These public health
agencies often incorporate the support and
collaboration of many other groups and
agencies. On the local level, individuals
residing in communities are often the first to
recognize when public health concerns arise.

In Montana, every county has a county public
health official, and public health concerns can
be brought to this person's attention. The local
public health officials can then, depending upon
their resources, either directly address any
potential problem or request assistance from a

state or federal agency. The state or federal
agency can likewise either handle the problem
directly or enlist support from, and collaborate
with, individuals or groups that specialize in
certain types of work most appropriate to a
specific health issue.

It is worthwhile to review what happened in
the case of Libby. The health concerns and
the hazards in the workplace associated with
vermiculite mining have been addressed by the
federal Mining Safety and Health
Administration and the federal Occupational
Safety and Health Administration through
periodic inspections and recommendations.

Although both of these federal agencies are
concerned with health at the worksite, neither
is part of a federal, state or local health
department. When it was determined that
some of the more recently diagnosed asbestos-
associated diseases may not be workplace
related, the matter became a general public
health issue.

This has resulted in members of the Libby
community, local public health officials and
health care providers, state agencies and
federal groups working together to learn more
about and appropriately address the issue. It
is important to recognize that not one of the
participants in these activities can function
independently, and a successful outcome will
be the result of all these groups working
together cooperatively using the best science

Our Department of Public Health and Human
Services is proud to employ several very highly
educated and skilled specialists to assist local
and federal public health officials investigate
and address public health issues such as
asbestos in Libby. In particular, Michael
Spence M.D. is Montana's State Medical
Officer and Todd Damrow, Ph.D. is Montana's
State Epidemiologist. Dr. Spence and Dr.
Damrow and their many state, local and
federal colleagues devote their professional
lives to keeping us safe and healthy. We
need to remember and be grateful for their
expertise and dedication for a public health
environment that is the envy of the most of
the rest of the world.

Sexual Abstinence Campaign Weil Received

More than two-thirds of Montana teen-agers
surveyed think a recent multi-media campaign
promoting sexual abstinence will help them resist
pressure to be sexually active.

A survey of 400 parents and their teen-aged
children shows the campaign was visible,
understood and led to relevant discussion
between parents and children. The survey,
conducted for the Montana Abstinence
Partnership by McFain & Associates Research of
Boise, came on the heels of a month-long
advertising campaign designed to remind teens
that "sex lasts a moment, being a parent lasts a
lifetime." The campaign ran through October.

"Were delighted to learn that almost 90 percent
of parents had seen or heard the ads and 82
percent of teens knew about them." said Jon
Berg, abstinence program coordinator. "Were also
very encouraged that more than 45 percent of
the parents surveyed said the ads prompted them
to discuss sexual abstinence with their children."

The survey showed that 92 percent of parents
and almost 90 percent of teens said they would
like to see the ads continue. Advertisements were
used on television and radio stations in Missoula,
Butte, Helena, Great Falls and Billings. Billboards
also were used in those communities, along with

print ads in high school newspapers in the same
cities. Some ads continued to be aired or seen
through November.

A total of 400 parents and 404 teens completed

the survey, achieving a 95 percent

confidence level with a margin of error

of plus or minus 5 percent. Teen

respondents were asked to agree or

disagree with the statement that

"teens my age feel a great deal of

pressure to be sexually active." Sixty

percent agreed with that statement, 12 percent

said they weren't sure and 28 percent disagreed.

Funding for the campaign came from a combination
of federal and state funds, as well as donations and
contributed services. Federal funding provides
$ 186,439 a year through 2002 and the state is
contributing direct funding or in-kind support on a
3-to-4 matching basis.

Thus far, five community organizations have
received $60,000 in grant funding to develop
abstinence mentoring programs, parent workshops
and other educational activities. The communities
are Missoula, Butte, Helena, Sidney and Wolf
Point. In addition, proposals for 10 more
programs around the state are being evaluated.


Four DPHHS Management Interns recently
completed their one-year program and
celebrated with a graduation ceremony
Pictured from left are: Debra Stipcich; Staci
Roope: Bruci Ann Hall; and Lisa Koble. The
Intern Program helps employees gain
management experience by working on specific

Public Comment Meetings Coming Soon

The Governor's Advisory Council on Tobacco Use Prevention is
planning a series of five public meetings where people can
comment on a draft plan designed to initiate a statewide,
comprehensive approach to reducing use of tobacco products in

Council members and DPHHS staff are composing the draft and
will make copies available to the public when the document is
completed, beginning January 17. Copies will be available on the
DPHHS website ( l under the What's Hot
section (Tobacco Use Prevention), or by calling 406-444-5508.

The public will be able to formally comment on the plan by:

♦ Electronic mail (via the DPHHS website or to
[email protected])

♦ Postal mail (Tobacco Use Prevention Plan, Box 202951, Room
C317, Cogswell Building, Helena, MT 59620-2951)

♦ Facsimile (406-444-7465)

♦ Direct comment at the public meetings

DPHHS will accept written comments through February 10, 2000.

The public meetings begin on the afternoon of Jan. 31 in Kalispell;
this session will also be a live videoconference meeting linking
several communities together. On the evening of Jan. 31 a
meeting will take place in Missoula. The meetings continue Feb. 1
in Great Falls, Feb. 2 in Glendive and conclude Feb. 3 in Billings.

Specific meeting times and locations will be available in early
January and will be posted on the DPHHS website.

1 999 DPHHS Employee



c 200



I 150

t 100

I 50

8a. My Superintendent

keeps the division administrator informed.


'^■'"''"'''-'^ 'r-'K^'^>

spM ^


Agrees with Statement

1 0. I believe tine work done in my Bureau benefits the public.

Agrees with Statement

« 300

I 250


Q. 200


1^ 150


■g 100
Z 50

13. I know the direction my division is going,

understand its mission & goal.

^«ss...^3 -— ssis ^^^^^^^^^^^ ^^^^ ^^^^^^ ^^^^^^^ b.,...a^

Agrees with Statement

iirvey: Selected Results

1 7a. There are more efficient ways in

which my unit could meet goals.

Agrees with Statement

Agrees with Statement

What values are most important to you?

(Each Respondent was asked to check 3.)

Percent of Respondents who Checked
2 4 0.6 0.8 1

To be respected and apprec
A connfortable, clean physic

People taking Responsibility

To be an example for ottier

A place wtiere management
A safe woridng place

High pnonty of developmg p P

A high level of taist £

Adequate compensation an J

People willing and eager to
Clear, common inspiring go vmM

A customer service focus for

Nutrition and Pregnancy:
Resolving to get enough folic acid

Most pregnant women know that eating right
is important for the babies growing inside
them. Unfortunately, most women do not
know that some nutrients are critical even
before a baby is conceived.

"Getting enough folic acid is important for
every Montana woman who could become
pregnant," says Chris Fogelman, RD (Registered
Dietitian), Special Supplemental Nutrition Program
for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) at Montana
Department of Public Health and Human Services.
"As part of the National Folic Acid Campaign, we
are urging all women of childbearing age to get
the 'B' attitude. That's 'B' for the B vitamin folic
acid, which can dramatically reduce the risk of
certain serious birth defects."

When it comes to pregnancy, the key is to think
ahead. The most important time to have plenty of
folic acid in a woman's body is in the month
before conception and the first few weeks of a

The problem, according to Fogelman, is that about
half of Montana births are to women who were not
planning a pregnancy. "That's why it is so critical
to relay the message about folic acid to all women.
Experts estimate that if every woman in the US
consumed the recommended amount of folic acid
(400 micrograms a day), it would reduce the
incidence of neural tube defects, like spina bifida,
by 70 percent."

Folic acid isn't the only nutrient thet pregnant
women need for healthy babies. It's just one they
need earlier than some of the others. Fortunately,
there are three easy ways to get folic acid - along
with all the other advantages of good nutrition.

"Some tasty foods are naturally good
sources of folic acid," says Fogelman.
"These include legumes (dried beans
and peas), orange juice, strawberries and
peanuts." Enriched grain foods, like breads and
cereals, are fortified with a form of folic acid. In
addition, most multi-vitamin/mineral supplements
contain at least the recommended 400 micrograms
of folic acid.

Eat Right Montana, a statewide network of health
and nutrition professionals, urges all women to
focus on folic acid during their childbearing years.
Since folic acid is a simple way to reduce
devastating and costly birth defects, it deserves to
be at the top of every woman's New Year's
resolution list. For more information about good
nutrition during pregnancy, call the Montana WIC
Program at 1-800-433-4298.

Delicious Ways to
Get More Folic Acid:

Supplements can be an important way to get
folic acid, but food offers the benefit of great
taste! Get yourself into a folic acid habit by
including good food sources in all your
meals. When you are grocery shopping,
check the labels of bread and cereal
products to make sure that you are getting
the folic acid that your health deserves.

Food/servina size

'Total' cereal, V2 cup
Lentils, V2 cup cooked
Chickpeas, V2 cup cooked
Spinach, V2 cup cooked
Asparagus, V2 cup cooked
Orange juice, 1 cup
Peanuts (dry-roast), 1/3 cup
Pistachios (roasted), 1 oz.
Strawberries, 8 med. raw
Wheat germ, V4 cup
Enriched bread, 1 slice

Breakfast Bonanzas:

Orange juice and fortified cereal
Toaster waffles with frozen berries
English nnuffin with peanut butter
Oatmeal with sliced berries
Bran muffins

Luscious Lunches:

Lentil soup and wheat crackers
Spinach salad with chickpeas
Bean chili with a green salad
Tuna sandwich with a fruit salad
Veggie soup with whole wheat roll

Quick Snacks:

Whole orange or banana
Toasted soybeans
Peanuts or pistachios //
Cereal and milk ((f

Tomato juice

Daily Value

(400 mcas)

100 %

45 %

35 %

33 %

30 %

27 %

25 %

25 %

20 %

20 %

10 %

Delightful Dinner Dishes:

Baked beans

Steamed asparagus or beets

Stir-fried broccoli

Three-bean salad

Spinach and avocado salad



Nutrition Campaign to Continue

Launched in January 1999 to help Montanans improve their
health, the Eat Right Montana "Healthy Families 2000" media
campaign has established itself as a positive, practical source of
nutrition and fitness information. The campaign has reached
throughout Montana and gained national attention.

Based on the program's success. Eat Right Montana will continue the campaign in 2000, using the
theme, "Healthy Families 2000: Food and Fitness for a Lifetime." Topics will address different
stages of life, such as pregnancy, infancy and the golden years, and will focus on vital nutrients
like folic acid and calcium.

"Health professionals tell us that the materials are very timely and have piqued the interest of
consumers," says Crystelle Fogle, MS, RD, co-chair of Eat Right Montana, a statewide nutrition
coalition of health professionals. "We've reached a much wider audience than we ever expected."
Fogle added that New York, Vermont, New Mexico and other states have begun using the concept.
The campaign has even reached health professionals in Australia.

While the format is designed to make healthy eating fun, the bottom-line message is dead serious:
five of the 10 leading causes of death in the United States are associated with diets high in fat,
low in fiber and low in fruits and vegetables. In Montana, the percentage of residents deemed
"overweight" rose to 51 percent in 1998, according the Department of Public Health and Human
Services (DPHHS). In 1998, 25 percent of Montanans reported no leisure-time physical activity.

Any consumer or health professional with e-mail can receive the free monthly packets. For more
information about the campaign, contact Crystelle Fogle at DPHHS, (406) 444-2672. Campaign
funding is provided by DPHHS, the Montana Dietetic Association, Montana Beef Council, MSU
Extension Service, Western Dairy Council and USDA Team Nutrition.

DPHHS Collaborates with MSU Extension Service on Helpful Guides

Several DPHHS employees have been involved
in developing an array of educational
publications through the Extension Service at
Montana State University-Bozeman.

Marsha A. Goetting, Family Economics
Specialist who co-authors the "MontGuides,"
encourages state employees to be aware of and
request these resources when needed. "These
MontGuides may be especially helpful as
families make New Year's resolutions for the
new millennium and want ideas for creative
techniques for managing their finances," said

She extends her appreciation to members of
the DPHHS Office of Aging, who assisted with
the MontGuide, "Using a Homestead Declaration
to Protect Your Home from Creditors," and
members of the Child Support Enforcement
Division who assisted with "Making Financial
Decisions When A Marriage Ends— A Montana

Following is a list of 10 financial management
publications available from your local County
Extension Office, or by contacting Goetting at
the address below. The publications are also
available on the Internet (
wwwpb/pubs/coned.html ).

Using a Check Register to Track your Expenses
(MT8703 HR)

Schedule of Non-Monthly Expenses (MT8910)
Developing a spending plan (MT9703)
Estimating the amount to save for college

Financing a college education: investment
alternatives (MT9201 HR)
Powerpay form (H00009)
Selecting a credit card (MT9802)
Financial Management Publications List (4435)
Using A Homestead Declaration to Protect your
Home From Creditors (MT9815)
♦ Making Financial Decisions When a Marriage
Ends (EB155 S5.00)

The MSU Extension Service has many other
publications available to assist Montanans with
financial management. For more information,
contact Goetting at: PO. Box 172800, Montana
State University, Bozeman MT 59717-2800, or
via electronic mail ( [email protected]) .

About this newsletter . . .

News and information about the programs
and people in DPHHS are presented in this
monthly newsletter. We welcome your
suggestions and comments: e-mail to
[email protected] or telephone (406)

This newsletter is also available on line
news99.htm ) and we are hoping to soon
develop an e-mail version for direct

Those contributing to this newsletter are:

Ken Pekoe, editor

Susan Ramsey, Child Support Enforcement

Patty Smith, Human Resources

John Zeeck, Disability Services

Distribution coordinator

Mandi Shulund, Director's Office
Peggy Bronson, Publications & Graphics

DPHHS Website Updated, Renovated

In case you haven't viewed the DPHHS Internet website
recently ( take a look and see if
you like the changes.

Throughout the fall, a DPHHS employee task force under
the direction of Pamela Mandii (OTD) met to share ideas
and ambitions on how to give the site a new look with
more features. During the first week of December the
group launched the new-look site, which now includes a
search function and site map.

Other task force members are: Kim Evermann (SLTC),
Maxine Sharette (HPSD), Duane Preshinger (CSED), John
Zeeck (DSD), Dennis Prody (AMDD), Albert Niccolucci
(OAD), Randy Haight (HCSD), and Gail Clifford (CFSD).
Ken Curtiss (OTD), Sue Leferink (OTD), and Ken Pekoe
(DO) provided oversight.

The task force was able to complete the project without
incurring any extra expense of relying on contractors.
"Once again, this shows what an extremely talented and
dedicated group of employees we have at DPHHS,"
Director Laurie Ekanger said. "We are just beginning to
scratch the surface of all the possibilities 'electronic
government' holds in our futures."
If you have suggestions for additional ways to improve
the website or just general feedback, contact Ken Pekoe
([email protected]).

; 3300 copies of this document were published at an estimated cost of $ 38 per copy The j
; total cost of $1,254 includes $912 for printing & $342 tor distribution. Publication & mailing \
> provided by the employees of Helena Industries. Inc. [

Department of Public Health & Human Services




Helena, MT
Permit No. 246




Online LibraryMontana. Dept. of Public Health and Human ServicesDPHHS News (Volume 2000 JAN) → online text (page 1 of 1)