News and Events

Family Health West Provides 100 Free Mammograms

Fruita, CO (August 14, 2014) – Family Health West will provide 100 free mammograms on August 20, 2014, to uninsured women in the valley. Family Health West has partnered with Marillac Clinic, Latimer House, Catholic Outreach, and the Department of Human Services to identify 100 women who are uninsured and due for mammograms. The women have been scheduled ahead of time and Family Health West is providing transportation as well as patient education about the importance of preventative checkups and care. Family Health West recently expanded their radiology department to provide the best in imaging technology including 3D Tomosynthesis Mammography—the latest in diagnostic imaging.

Dr. Michael Neste, Medical Director of Radiology at Family Health West, stressed the importance of early detection, “In comparison to 2D Mammography, 3D increases cancer detection by 20% while reducing the amount of call-backs by 40%.”

“Our focus at the Outreach Day Center and the Soup Kitchen is mainly on serving the needs of the homeless.” said Beverly Lampley, Director of Development and Communication for Grand Valley Catholic Outreach. “In the 26 years we have been in service in this valley, one constant has been proven – homeless people are no different from others except they are not housed. Women have been taught the importance of regular breast exams and mammograms. The majority of homeless women that we see have no insurance. The homeless community is like many other subsets of society with friendships forming family bonds. There have been losses among these women from cancer – some from breast cancer. Many of the women over 50 have never had a mammogram. To be able to get a free mammogram is a huge event for all of them. But the really important factor to them and to us is that someone thought enough of them and their needs to offer this special day; not only the mammogram, but also to provide transportation. Thank you from Catholic Outreach and thank you from the women you will see on August 20. This is a gift that will not soon be forgotten.”

Family Health West is providing the free mammograms to fulfil their mission, “We are dedicated to providing the best in healthcare services to our community,” said Mark J. Francis, Family Health West President and CEO, “but unfortunately, not everyone can afford health care. We are pleased to partner with organizations that serve the uninsured and offer this advanced technology to women who would not normally be able to benefit from it.”

Sarah Gilbert, RN named as new AEC Director of Nursing

Fruita, CO (August 11, 2014) – Family Health West is pleased to announce the appointment of Sarah Gilbert, RN, as the new Director of Nursing in the Adult Extended Care facility.

Gilbert, who moved to the Grand Valley from Cortez, Colorado, has worked with the geriatric population on and off for nearly 15 years. After graduating from LPN school with distinction in 2002, she went on to gain her Associate’s Degree in Nursing from Pueblo Community College. She has clinical experience in surgery, obstetrics, nursery, intensive care, and geriatrics.

“My strengths in geriatrics are infection control, wounds, rehab, and nurse management,” said Gilbert. “I am very excited to join Family Health West and to be part of the growth and changes taking place.”

Gilbert is married and has two teenage daughters who keep her busy with marching band and athletics. In her free time, she enjoys riding dirt bikes, kayaking, hiking, camping, and gardening. She also enjoys raising her ducks and playing with her Bengal kittens and chocolate lab, Bailey.

“We are fortunate to have Sarah as part of our team,” said Lori Henderson, Family Health West Chief Nursing Officer. “She brings a wealth of education and experience to our staff, residents and their families.”

Family Health West Welcomes Shauna Blair to Women’s Health Care Team

Fruita, CO (August 11, 2014) – Family Health West has expanded its services to offer women’s health care, including 3D mammography. Shauna Blair, Registered Mammography Technologist and Certified Breast Patient Navigator in Imaging and Cancer Care, has recently joined the women’s health care team.

Blair has more than 25 years of experience as a mammography technologist, and more than three years of experience as a navigator. She became the first navigator on the Western Slope after receiving her certification in breast navigation in March 2011.

Blair worked at St. Mary’s Hospital for 25 years, where she helped develop the Breast Center of Excellence at Pavilion Imaging. This is an elite distinction for facilities accredited in mammography, breast ultrasound, and breast MRI.

Family Health West invited Blair to join radiologist, Dr. Michael Neste, and his educated team of technologists to help build and grow its women’s health care services.

“I saw this as an opportunity to help women in Fruita, Loma, Mack, and surrounding areas through a very frightening time,” said Blair. “I can be the one constant for a woman going through breast cancer.”

As a navigator, Blair is able to discuss different options when an invasive breast procedure is recommended. She is also there to assist in the biopsy procedure, and if a diagnosis of cancer is made, she acts as liaison throughout the journey of surgery and appointments.

Blair graduated with her Associate’s Degree in Science in the radiology program at Colorado Mesa University. She has served as president of the Colorado Mammography Society, and has been active in many organizations. She supports the Women’s Wellness Program through the American Cancer Society, free and low cost mammograms to women in Colorado and Utah, and the Junior Service League which provides assistance to those who are underinsured or without insurance.

Blair is a native of Grand Junction and has a husband and two sons, ages 15 and 19. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her family, camping and fishing.

Family Health West Offers Sports Physicals

Fruita, CO (July 17, 2014) - Sports physicals for School District 51 Students are available at the Family Health West ACCESS CLINIC, 215 N Plum Street, Fruita, 9:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday. 

The cost is $25 and students should bring the appropriate forms, “We will perform a physical exam required for sports participation,” said Lori Henderson, Chief Nursing Officer, “These physicals ensure that the student is physically fit for his or her particular sport interest.” 

Please call 858-2190 to make an appointment

Media Advisory: Family Health West Ribbon Cutting for New Radiology Wing

WHAT: Ribbon Cutting, Open House, and Presentation of the new Family Health West radiology wing featuring 3D Mammography, Wide-Bore MRI, Digital X-Ray and GE 64-Slice CT Scanner.

WHEN: Wednesday, July 9, beginning at 5:00 pm with presentations from the Family Health West Women’s Health Care Team at 5:15 pm.

WHERE: Family Health West Hospital, 300 W. Ottley Avenue, Fruita


Dr. Neste
Michael Neste, MD – Family Health West’s new Medical Director of Radiology

Dr. Glasser
Rebecca Glasser, MD – of Canyon Creek Plastic Surgery* specializing in breast reconstruction

Dr. Howell
Kevin Howell, DO – of Grand Mesa Women’s Health Care* specializing in OBGYN

Mark Francis
Mark Francis – CEO and President of Family Health West

Stacy Mascarenas
Stacey Mascarenas – Chair, Family Health West Board of Trustees

Dr. Fred Barbero, Wound Care Director at Family Health West

Dr Griffiths
Fruita, CO (June 9, 2014) – Family Health West is pleased to announce Dr. Fred Barbero as the full time Medical Director of Wound Care. Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, Dr. Barbero received his medical training at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City and Ogden. After being an ER doctor for 36 years, most recently as Medical Director of Family Health West’s Emergency Department, Dr. Barbero decided to focus his efforts on developing and advancing the capabilities of Family Health West’s Wound Care Center. “As the Medical Director, I lead a five-person Wound Care Team providing therapy for patients with chronic, stubborn-to-heal wounds,” said Dr. Barbero. “Most of our patients have other chronic illnesses which complicate their abilities to heal. As our clinic has grown over the past two years, we have added new therapeutic capabilities such as micro-current treatments and diagnostic capabilities such as perfusion testing.”

Mark Francis, Family Health West President and CEO, is pleased with this change, “We are so fortunate to have the wealth of experience and professionalism that Dr. Barbero brings to the Wound Care Center. It provides advantages to patients who need specialized intervention to assist with healing their wounds. It also provides an option for physicians to refer their patients for assistance with difficult-to-heal wounds."

Dr. Barbero has studied and volunteered as a physician in Mexico, Colombia, and the Dominican Republic, “These experiences all have allowed me to learn and utilize medical Spanish. I worked as a doctor in migrant clinics for several years in Utah and in Palisade.”
In his free time, Dr. Barbero enjoys alpine skiing, whitewater rafting, canoeing, hiking, climbing 14ers, mountain biking, road biking, and traveling. Dr. Barbero adds, “My newest passion is learning how to be a top-notch granddad and passing on my passion for life and its experiences.”

For more information about Family Health West, call 970-858-2104 or visit

Family Health West Welcomes New Medical Director of Radiology

Fruita, CO (June 6, 2014) – Family Health West has recently expanded their radiology department to include not only the best in imaging technology, but also Dr. Michael Neste as the Medical Director of Radiology. “Having a radiologist on site is a critical piece to our hospital growth,” said Family Health West CEO and President, Mark J. Francis. “Dr. Neste brings a wealth of expertise, professionalism, and leadership necessary for our expansion.”

Dr. Neste is originally from Minnesota and attended the University of Minnesota for medical school. He completed his residency and a fellowship in vascular and interventional radiology at the University of Michigan. As Medical Director of Radiology at Family Health West, Dr. Neste will read all radiographic studies, perform minimally invasive procedures, and oversee all standards and protocols for the department.

“I am very excited to be part of Family Health West,” said Dr. Neste. “The enthusiasm and vision of the administration and staff make Family Health West a unique place to practice medicine. By investing in and developing a full service radiology department, the hospital has shown its commitment to providing high quality health care to the surrounding community."

In his free time, Dr. Neste enjoys theater and the outdoor opportunities that Western Colorado affords. He especially enjoys skiing and cycling.

Dr. Joseph Kupets, New Family Health West Emergency Medical Director

Fruita, CO (May 19, 2014) – Family Health West is pleased to announce Dr. Joseph Kupets as their Emergency Medical Director. Dr. Kupets has worked as a medical emergency physician at Family Health West since April of 2011 and will assume his new role June 1, 2014.

Dr. Kupets received his Doctorate of Osteopathic Medicine at the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed his residency in Family Medicine at Presbyterian St. Luke’s Medical Center in Denver. “We are thrilled to have Dr. Kupets in this new role,” said Mark J. Francis, Family Health West CEO and President. “He is well respected by his peers and provides outstanding care for our patients—exactly the kind of physician we want to lead the emergency department.”

“I’m honored to accept this role at Family Health West,” said Dr. Kupets, “It’s a wonderful opportunity for me professionally and an exciting challenge as we look forward to expanding our emergency care services.”
In his free time, Dr. Kupets enjoys Ford Mustangs and car shows.

Family Health West Employee Selected as Member of National Healthcare Information Society

Fruita, CO (May 15, 2014) – Pam Foyster, Family Health West Director of Clinical Informatics, was recently selected to serve as a member of the National Healthcare Information Society’s (HIMSS) Management Engineering and Process Improvement Committee. The purpose of the Committee is to support and promote the profession of management engineering and process improvement by providing opportunities for networking, collaboration, publication, promotion, and professional development in national healthcare organizations.

Pam was hired at Family Health West in December of 2013 to implement Cerner (an international healthcare information technology corporation specializing in providing complete systems for hospitals and other medical organizations) to manage and integrate all electronic medical records, computerized physician order entry, and financial information. Her participation in HIMSS affords Family Health West the ability to continually improve their electronic health records system to ensure better communication among healthcare professionals and patients.

"Management Engineering and Process Improvement are components of any organization's growth and evolution. Our real-life example is the Cerner project itself. If we install the best technology but do nothing to improve our process, we gain nothing. We could improve processes without technology, but the gain would be limited. By doing both, we get more out of our efforts and become an even better organization in the process."

Mark Francis, Family Health West CEO and President, believes Pam’s national involvement benefits our community, “Pam’s commitment and dedication to improving patient care is exemplified by her involvement in HIMSS. We appreciate her representing us as healthcare organizations all over the country work together to make positive changes in communication.”

New Tomosynthesis Mammography at Family Health West

Fruita, CO (May 1, 2014) - Family Health West has announced the arrival of the new Tomosynthesis Mammography (three dimensional mammography) to their Hospital. Family Health West is one of the first healthcare facilities in Colorado to offer 3D mammography. Tomosynthesis Mammography incorporates revolutionary imaging technology that provides incredibly sharp breast tissue images. This not only improves the ability to detect breast cancer, but also decreases the need for additional examinations so often needed in mammography. The images appear on the technologist’s and radiologist’s monitor within seconds, which results in a more rapid examination and ultimately a more efficient experience for the patient.

Family Health West Hospital is a certified Pink Ribbon Facility, a distinction awarded only to the most elite of healthcare providers. “Statistics show that one in eight women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime,” said Michelle Angelo, Family Health West Director of Radiology, “By offering digital mammograms, Family Health West is hoping to increase the number of women in the Valley who follow recommendations for regular screenings. If detected early, the five-year survival rate is 97%.”

“Tomosynthesis is the first of its kind in the Grand Valley, and has been shown to significantly reduce the number of false positive mammograms and decrease the need for breast biopsies,” said Mark J. Francis, Family Health West CEO and President, “Furthermore, our Mammography Department will have a radiology physician on site. This means that in addition to screening mammography, diagnostic mammography and most biopsies can now be performed here at Family Health West.”

“We are excited about our state-of-the-art technology and enhanced mammography services,” added Lori Henderson, Family Health West CNO, “The Tomosynthesis Mammography expands our capacity to take care of our patients with the best in technology for their convenience and that of their physicians.”

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