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VolunTEENS steps

PCRMC VolunTEEN Program Offers Students Valuable Experience

Every summer, area teenagers have the chance to gain valuable knowledge and experience while helping out in a hospital setting by becoming VolunTEENs at Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC).

“The VolunTEEN program is for youth ages 14-19 who might be interested in healthcare careers,” says Crystal Lorah, specialist with PCRMC Auxiliary & Volunteer Services.

The Auxiliary sponsors this service opportunity for local teens, and the Auxiliary board provides funds for the VolunTEEN program. Two VolunTEEN sessions are offered every year, one in June and one in July.

This program normally draws about 30-40 students from Phelps County and surrounding areas, according to Lorah. PCRMC’s VolunTEENs are from Rolla, Waynesville, Steelville, Cuba, Salem, Edgar Springs, Newburg and Jerome. The students who volunteer must be enrolled in junior high or high school.

VolunTEENs offer assistance throughout the PCRMC organization from delivering paperwork to nursing units to greeting and escorting patients and visitors at the Medical Office Building (MOB) as well as the North and Main entrances of the hospital.

“They make reminder phone calls for Respiratory Services, take hospitality carts around to waiting areas and assist with clerical projects in Guest Relations and other areas,” Lorah says.

Additionally, the VolunTEENs make and deliver pain clinic packets as well as complete mailing projects for various departments, as needed. “They also work on folders or binders for other departments and perform other office projects and errands, as requested,” Lorah explains.

VolunTEENs help with the Take A Stand Against Child Abuse lemonade stands for the Phelps County Child Advocacy Network (PCCAN) and may assist in The Lily Pad gift shop.

Under the VolunTEEN program, teenagers must complete at least six three-hour shifts if they only participate in one session or complete 10 three-hour shifts if they volunteer in both of the summer sessions.

In addition to helping at PCRMC, the students learn about different aspects of the healthcare and medical fields. Many departments at PCRMC provide tours or presentations for the VolunTEENs to further familiarize them with the hospital’s daily operations and services.

PCRMC’s VolunTEEN program benefits students by giving them volunteer opportunities and hours needed for National Honor Society and scholarship requirements, plus college applications.

“I have even had teens use their volunteer experience on job applications,” Lorah says.

Applications for the VolunTEEN program are usually available in April and must be completed and returned by the end of May, with orientations beginning in June.

To learn more about the PCRMC VolunTEEN program, please contact Crystal Lorah at 573-458-7947 or, or Tina Pridgeon, Auxiliary director, at 573-458-7939 or

Hugh Schuetz, DO, family medicine physician, (right) received the first Preceptor of the Year Award from Phelps County Regional Medical Center on June 1, 2017. Chadwell Vail, DO, internist, (left) is shown presenting the award, which recognizes Dr. Schuetz for his outstanding contributions to medical education.

Dr. Hugh Schuetz named PCRMC Preceptor of the Year

Hugh Schuetz, DO, a family medicine physician with Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) has been named the Preceptor of the Year for 2016-17.

Dr. Schuetz was presented this first-time award on June 1, 2017, during a PCRMC Medical Group meeting. The award recognizes his outstanding contributions to medical education.

“I am very humbled to receive this award,” said Dr. Schuetz, former director of student medical education at PCRMC for more than 20 years. “Being associated with PCRMC’s medical education program has been the highlight of my career, and this honor is just the cherry on top of the sundae.”

Students in the Mid-Missouri AHEC (Area Health Education Center) program at PCRMC chose Dr. Schuetz to receive the honor. Their decision was unanimous, according to Chadwell Vail, DO, an internal medicine physician and current director of student medical education at PCRMC.

“They chose Dr. Schuetz because he is an amazing mentor,” Dr. Vail said. “One student even noted that had it not been for Dr. Schuetz, he would not have done as well as he did during his third- and fourth-year clinical clerkships.”

Most of these students from A.T. Still University – Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine and Kansas City University of Medicine and Bioscience are in their third and fourth years of medical school and complete many of their clinical clerkships at PCRMC, including some with Dr. Schuetz.

While studying at PCRMC, the medical students participate in a didactic program, where they attend lectures and workshops led by various physicians and specialists, such as Dr. Schuetz. “The medical, nursing and Allied Health family are all to be commended for their participation in providing an exceptional, inclusive educational experience,” Dr. Schuetz says.

Dr. Schuetz continues to work with medical students at PCRMC, educating them about physical exams and coaching them as they receive practical experience in a hospital setting.

“It is a pleasant reward to see the vast majority of medical students who receive training and education at PCRMC grow up to become more independent, self-sufficient and knowledgeable,” Dr. Schuetz said.

blog superhero5k

5th Annual Superhero 5K Benefits Local Cancer Patients

Phelps County Regional Medi­cal Center (PCRMC) held the 5th Annual Superhero 5K walk/ fun run at Veterans Memorial Park in Rolla in June. This event raises money to help local cancer patients through the Phelps Re­gional Health Care Foundation’s Joy of Caring Cancer Fund.

This year, more than $11,000 was raised for the fund, which provides financial assistance for patients undergoing cancer treat­ments who may have difficulty managing their daily activities due to their cancer diagnosis. This fund assists with prescrip­tion medications, wigs, food sup­plements, mastectomy bras and recovery supplies, rehabilitation and other needs, as identified.

Over 220 runners and walkers of all ages took part in this year’s fun run and walk. Several super­heroes lined the race course to cheer on the participants. Many everyday heroes attended, too, in­cluding deputies with the Phelps County Sheriff’s Department, troopers with the Missouri State Highway Patrol Troop I, firefight­ers with the City of Rolla Fire and Rescue, and EMS crews with PCRMC. The Phelps Air emer­gency medical helicopter also flew in for the event, and attend­ees could meet the flight crew in person.

The Superhero 5K premier spon­sor this year was PCRMC ENT physician Brian Kriete, MD, while PCRMC orthopedic surgeon Alan Heincker, DO, was the award sponsor.

Several other PCRMC providers sponsored the event, including medical oncologist and hema­tologist Tezo Karedan, MD; ENT physician Judyann Kren­ning, MD; OB/GYN physician Beena Green, MD; certified nurse midwives Heather Wildebrandt, WHNP, and Karen Ulrich; psy­chiatrist Vaishali Shah, MD; urologist Geoff Lloyd-Smith, MD; and hospitalist Gerardo Ismael G. Gueco, MD.

Additionally, PCRMC appreci­ates all of the local businesses and community members who sponsored the Superhero 5K. Without them, this event would not be possible.

Once again, there was a bounce house and inflatable slide avail­able for the children to play, and Summertime Sno-Shaved Ice offered snow-cones for sale. MOCA Head Start offered face painting, while Drama Force Pro­ductions presented a short skit for the participants after the race.

Medals were awarded to the top three male and female finishers in various age groups. Participants were encouraged to dress up for the event, and prizes were award­ed for the best superhero cos­tumes. Sunny 104.5 broadcasted live from the event, too.

aster awards

PCRMC Wins 6 Aster Awards for Healthcare Marketing

Phelps County Regional Medical Center’s (PCRMC) Marketing Department recently earned six Aster Awards in an international competition that recognizes excellence in healthcare advertising and marketing efforts.

The two Gold Awards and four Silver Awards presented to PCRMC were for work done in 2016. The Aster Awards contest received nearly 3,000 entries from across the United States and around the world. PCRMC competed against similar-sized organizations.

“Our marketing team is made up of hard-working and dedicated employees, and I am very proud of our staff for receiving this recognition,” said PCRMC Marketing Director John Marc Denbo. “For PCRMC to be awarded among the best in this competition is such an amazing accomplishment.”

The PCRMC Marketing Department, comprised of Denbo, Somer Overshon, Hillary MacCash and Paul Hackbarth, took home the prestigious awards in the areas of special events, internal publications, self-promotion, newspaper advertising, flyers and TV/video advertising.

The PCRMC Marketing Department won Gold Awards (presented to the top 5% of entries in the nation) for the following:

  • Entry Name: 2016 Superhero 5K
    Category: Special Events
  • Entry Name: PCRMC Clinics Ad
    Category: Publication/Internal

The PCRMC Marketing Department won Silver Awards (presented to the top 12% of entries in the nation) for the following:

  • Entry Name: Delbert Day Cancer Institute Services Ad
    Category: Self-Promotion
  • Entry Name: 2016 Faces & Places Ad
    Category: Newspaper Advertising – Insert
  • Entry Name: Fall Into Patient Safety 2016
    Category: Flyer
  • Waynesville Medical Plaza – We Care For You Commercial
    Category: TV/Video Advertising

A panel of industry experts judged all entries. Judging criteria included creativity, layout and design, functionality, message effectiveness, production quality and overall appeal.

“The PCRMC Marketing Department is staffed with creative and talented people who turn their gifted skill sets into telling the story of the hospital and its service to the community. Congratulations to the team for another job well done,” said PCRMC Senior Vice President/Chief Medical Officer Donald James, DO.

PCRMC CEO Ed Clayton agreed. “The PCRMC Marketing Department has an important job informing the community about all of our services, clinics, providers and events as well as educating the public about healthcare,” Clayton said. “These awards show how well the Marketing Department does in ensuring the community has the information it needs.”

Marketing Healthcare Today Magazine and Creative Images, Inc. host the Aster Awards.

During last year’s Aster Awards competition, the PCRMC Marketing Department won one Gold Award and three Silver Awards.

For more information about the Aster Awards program, please visit


PCRMC’s 4th Annual National Cancer Survivors Day Celebration Will Be Held June 3

Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) will honor cancer survivors during a National Cancer Survivors Day celebration Saturday, June 3, 2017, from 8-11 a.m. at Greentree Christian Church, 800 Greentree Road, in Rolla, MO.

This is PCRMC’s fourth annual National Cancer Survivors Day event, and the theme this year is “Treasure Survivorship.”

“National Cancer Survivors Day is a celebration for those who have survived cancer and an inspiration for those recently diagnosed with the disease,” says Carol Walter, nurse navigator at PCRMC’s Delbert Day Cancer Institute.

The morning of activities will include a free breakfast served until 10:30 a.m., a raffle for gift baskets and other door prizes, a photo booth as well as music and entertainment provided by Bob Kraus. Representatives with the American Cancer Society also will attend.

PCRMC internist Erik AuBuchon, DO, will speak about the importance of patients having a primary care provider. Two cancer survivors – Daryl Reeves and Jennifer Bragg – also will share their stories.

Cancer survivors along with their families, friends and caregivers are invited to attend. This event has drawn crowds of 300 to 500 people in past years, according to Walter.

The National Cancer Survivors Day Foundation defines a cancer survivor as anyone living with a history of cancer – from the moment of diagnosis through the remainder of life. With more than 15.5 million people living with cancer in the U.S. today, everyone knows somebody whose life has been touched by cancer.

Life after cancer is about more than just surviving. It’s about living well,” Walter says.

National Cancer Survivors Day has been recognized locally since 2014 after a PCRMC oncology nurse heard about the national event. The first PCRMC Cancer Survivors Day took place at Rolla Lions Club Park, but the event has since been held at Greentree Christian Church.

PCRMC’s National Cancer Survivors Day breakfast is made possible with support from Key Sport Shop, Colton’s Steak House and Grill and many volunteers.

Pre-registration for the June 3 event is encouraged. To RSVP or for more information, email or call 573-458-8770.