Q&A WITH CAROLYN OGLAND, MD, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER
Dr. Ogland joined North Memorial Health in 2018 as Chief Medical Officer, Ambulatory Services and became Chief Medical Officer for the system in May 2019. She provides clinical leadership and management for North Memorial Health providers, chairs the North Collaborative Care board and sits on the Medical Executive Committees at North Memorial Health Hospital and Maple Grove Hospital.
Q: Why is it so important that providers continue to encourage customers to seek needed care?
Dr. Ogland: While COVID-19 is a serious concern, we must remain focused on keeping our customers healthy in the long-term. We’ve demonstrated that healthcare can be achieved safely and effectively during the pandemic, and it’s vital to keep our customers as current as possible on recommended health screenings and tests, children’s vaccinations, annual physicals and other preventative care. It’s also important that we see anyone experiencing a health issue and encourage them not to wait to seek care.
Q: What is North Memorial Health’s primary safety strategies to help ensure the safety of customers and members of its health family?
Dr. Ogland: The wellness and safety of our team members and customers is always our top priority. We developed four key principles including masking, social distancing, hygiene and screening, all designed to keep ourselves and each other safe.
This takes all of us – working together and doing our part. Adhering to these principles with consistency and care will help us maintain one healthy family.
Q: As we continue to adapt to COVID-19, how have safer practices changed and impacted how people receive care?
Dr. Ogland: We continue to learn more about this virus and are then able evolve our safety strategies, including:
- Putting a stronger emphasis on technology for virtual care.
- A visitor policy that is more stringent during higher rates of infection.
- One-way traffic guides in spaces.
- Providing all of a customer’s care in their own clinic exam room to minimize exposure.
- Continuing to make it easier for customers to get tested for COVID-19 before surgery at our sites.
- Vaccinating team members.
Q: How is North Memorial Health using new technologies to keep customers and team members safer?
Dr. Ogland: We’ve focused on the rapid implementation of technology to increase safety for our customers. One example of this is using technology to enable virtual check-in at our
clinics and urgent care locations through technology called Hello Patient and On My Way, both offered through the MyChart mobile app.
Both of these tools have significantly reduced the need for customers to wait in the lobby and enhanced customer experiences at the same time.
Q: What does a llama have to do with safety?
Dr. Ogland: Good question! A full-sized llama is six feet long and demonstrates how far apart we need to be to practice good social distancing.