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Volunteers Needed for Emergency Preparedness Drill PDF Print E-mail


South Peninsula Hospital will be the site of an emergency disaster preparedness drill happening on March 19, 20 and 21 in Homer.  The scenario will be a disaster which causes increased patient surge and a damaged facility. The three-day event will exercise the hospital’s emergency management plan, evacuation plan, and employee/community readiness.  The exercise will include a mass casualty, mass fatality, partial evacuation, and the creation of an alternate care site. 


Numerous agencies will be involved, including but not limited to South Peninsula Hospital, City of Homer Fire and Police Departments, SVT Health Clinic, Central Peninsula Hospital, Alaska Respond, Alaska Army National Guard, Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, State of Alaska Public Health, and more. The exercise is being coordinated by South Peninsula Hospital and AKDHSS Hospital Preparedness Program/Emergency Operations.


Volunteers will be used as mock patients, patient’s families, affected neighbors, inquiring media and inquiring public.  Volunteer shifts range from four to 12 hours and include orientation and refreshments.  To volunteer, please contact Derotha Ferraro at South Peninsula Hospital at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  with your name, available days (March 19, 20, 21) and full or half day availability.  You will be contacted with additional information.

Ebola Update PDF Print E-mail


Helpful Links:  

State of Alaska Ebola Site       Centers for Disease Control        World Health Org Ebola Site       Ebola FAQs


Update from South Peninsula Hospital  Oct. 19, 2014
Although South Peninsula Hospital has not yet treated anyone who falls into the risk category for Ebola, when needed we will utilize the screening criteria for patient isolation as set forth by The Center for Disease Control and Prevention for Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) as follows:


Fever, headache, joint and muscle aches, weakness, fatigue, diarrhea, vomiting,
stomach pain, lack of appetite and, in some cases, bleeding,
recent travel (within 21 days) to Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone or
other countries where EVD transmission has been reported by the World Health Organization,
or close contact with someone who has a confirmed case of Ebola.


If a person meets both criteria, we ask them to come to the ER immediately. However, such patients are advised to please call the main phone number 235-8101 prior to their arrival so we can prepare for their visit and, if conditions warrant, admit them through a private entrance to avoid the public areas.



How is Ebola Spread?

According to the CDC, there are several ways Ebola can spread to other people:

  • Touching the blood or body fluids of a person who is sick with or has died from Ebola, including but not limited to urine, saliva, feces, vomit and semen. To become infected with the virus, you would need to get some of the ill person’s bodily fluids into your mouth, nose, or eyes, or into your body via a cut or a needle stick. Doctors say that there is no evidence anyone has ever been infected via sweat.
  • Touching objects contaminated with the virus, like syringes or other medical equipment
  • Touching infected animals, by contact with blood or fluids or infected meat

  • A cough from a sick patient could infect someone close enough to be sprayed with droplets of mucus or saliva. People dealing with anyone who may be ill are told to stand at least three feet away, preferably six. Being within three feet of a patient for a prolonged time, without wearing protective gear, is considered direct contact.

Direct contact through broken skin or mucus membranes is key, as the CDC said Ebola cannot be spread through the air (the virus doesn't drift through the air like germs that cause measles or tuberculosis) or by water or food.


Staying Healthy

The community is reminded that it is “flu season” and there are three serious contagious illnesses affecting the population nationwide, all three with some shared symptoms:  Influenza A (H1N1), Enterovirus and Ebola. 

Our infection control team will be available at the Health Fair on Nov. 1 to share information, and 200 free flu shots will be administered at the health fair.

  • Influenza: The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and lungs.  It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Symptoms include fever or feeling feverish/chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue (tiredness).  
  • Enterovirus D68: Also known as EV-D68, Enterovirus D68 is a contagious respiratory illness initially resembling the common cold; symptoms include sneezing, a runny nose and a cough; however, some patients will get a severe cough, have difficulty breathing and/or develop a rash.  EV-D68 can also be accompanied by a fever or wheezing. 

The best way to prevent the flu is by proper hand hygiene and getting a flu vaccine each year, which are available at all three medical clinics in the community, Safeway and the public health center by appointment only on Tuesdays and Thursdays for those who qualify*.  Homer Medical Center offers special flu shot clinics every Monday for HMC patients. Call 235-8586 to schedule a time to avoid a wait.

Is South Peninsula Hospital prepared? 

The Pandemic Flu committee at South Peninsula Hospital has been meeting since early October with specific regard to Ebola preparedness, and staff-wide education began this week to help all employees stay informed on prevention, identification of and treatment protocols. Dr. Larry Reynolds, our infection control physician, is conducting numerous employee trainings on preventing the spread of Ebola and other contagious diseases, and the pandemic flu committee meets regularly and attends statewide and nationwide teleconferences to stay abreast of trends and updates.



Orthopedic Care Offered PDF Print E-mail

 Adcox smallDr. Adcox, orthopedic surgeon, offers a full range of orthopedic services including sports medicine, orthopedic surgeries, total joint replacements and care of cervical and lumbar spinal disorders.

Free Colonoscopy Consults and Farmers' Market Tokens! PDF Print E-mail

Dr. Greg Hough, general surgeon, offers free colonoscopy consultations.  And during the month of March, a free $20 token to the Homer Farmers’ Market will be given to every person who gets that free colonoscopy consult.

Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in America, but with regular screening, can often be cured or prevented. Colonoscopy is the preferred screening method for colon cancer, as it allows physicians to look directly at the entire colon and to identify suspicious growths, which often can be removed before they turn into cancer. For normal-risk individuals, this short, simple procedure is recommended every 10 years beginning at age 50.

Alaska has some of the highest incidence rates of colon cancer in the nation, yet just over 50 percent of Alaskans older than 50 reports being up to date with colon cancer screenings. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 42 percent of residents in the South Peninsula Hospital service area are over 50 years old.

In addition, a healthy diet – with lots of fruits and vegetables – is an important part of reducing overall cancer risk.

For more information, or to schedule your free consult with Dr. Hough, call 235-0310.


Health Needs Assessment Completed PDF Print E-mail

South Peninsula Hospital is one of numerous partnering agencies working together to improve community health in our local MAPP coalition (Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnership).  MAPP utilizes a local health needs assessment as the foundation of a community health improvement plan, and has just completed the 2013 comprehensive health needs assessment.  The hospital's assessment report can be viewed here, or visit the project website at www.mappofskp.net to download a copy.  In addition to participating at the local level to address the findings prioritized by the community through MAPP, South Peninsula Hospital is working to address many of the findings in ways unique to hospital mission and capacity.  An SPH Implementation Strategy was approved at the Board of Directors meeting in June, 2014, which outlines some of those actions.