Norb's Story

Transitional Care
“I’ve had many hospitalizations throughout my life, but my stay in Sauk Centre was the best. The nurses were so nice and friendly, and they took such good care of me.”

Continue recovering close to home with Transitional Care

For a hard-working farmer like Norb Odegard, taking a break doesn’t come naturally. Even after numerous surgeries, hospitalizations and radiation treatments, the 74-year-old Sauk Centre man always went back to work right away -- until his most recent surgery.

During a yearly check-up, Norb learned that he needed a heart valve replacement. He didn’t want to travel to the Twin Cities for care, so he was glad to hear that Cardiologist Tim Schuchard, MD, from the CentraCare Heart & Vascular Center in St. Cloud, sees patients in Alexandria each week. Norb scheduled an appointment immediately.

Dr. Schuchard examined Norb and found that his valve, which is supposed to be the size of a quarter, was down to the size of a ballpoint pen. He recommended surgery, to which Norb responded, “Can we wait until the crops are in?”

In November 2015, Dr. Schuchard’s colleague, Cardiovascular Surgeon John Teskey, MD, performed Norb’s surgery at St. Cloud Hospital. Norb was discharged after five days; however, he was not ready to go home quite yet. He was advised to receive transitional care at CentraCare – Sauk Centre.

“I didn’t want to go to a nursing home to recover, and I knew I would get the care I needed in Sauk Centre,” Norb said.

Norb cannot say enough about his great experience with transitional care.

“I’ve had many hospitalizations throughout my life, but my stay in Sauk Centre was the best. The nurses were so nice and friendly, and they took such good care of me.”

The nursing staff gave Norb the attention he needed to recover.

“They saw to it that I was walking around right after my surgery, and they routinely checked my blood pressure,” he said. He added that having his family close by and seeing them every day helped with his recovery.

After six days, Norb was ready to get back to work on the farm. He was happy that he chose to take time to recover and even decided to continue participating in cardiac rehab sessions at the hospital since he enjoyed them so much.

Transitional care at CentraCare 

Transitional care is for patients who are well enough to leave a traditional hospital setting but still have nursing, therapy or respiratory needs that may not be met in their homes or skilled nursing facilities.

Hospital-based transitional care programs offer a number of important advantages such as:

  • An excellent nurse-to-patient ratio
  • A strong team culture
  • The ability to address sudden changes in condition with physicians, radiology and laboratory staff
  • A patient-centered approach that includes bedside rounds with the care team on a regular schedule

Transitional care locations

CentraCare Transitional Care is provided within CentraCare hospital settings in the following communities:

CentraCare also offers transitional care at St. Benedict’s Senior Community’s private, amenity-rich Therapy Suites in Sartell 320-534-3000, and Short Stay Care in the Gorecki Care Center on St. Benedict’s campus in southeast St. Cloud 320-654-2355.