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IHS Adds Staff at Omaha Winnebago Hospital, Winnebago, Nebraska

The Great Plains Area Office of the Indian Health Service today welcomes two new, full-time staff members to Omaha Winnebago Hospital, Michael Newell as laboratory director and Laberta Farrell as health system specialist.

"Mr. Newell and Ms. Farrell bring extensive experience in clinical laboratory operations and hospital management, respectively, to Omaha Winnebago Hospital," said Mr. Ron Cornelius, Great Plains Area director. "These new hires are a key part of the IHS commitment to continuing improvements at Omaha Winnebago Hospital. IHS is making investments in the high quality laboratory and administrative services that our patients deserve."

As laboratory director and supervisory medical technologist, Newell will run the Laboratory Services Program for the hospital. He will supervise laboratory staff and ensure that clinical laboratory operations at the hospital are fast and accurate, with record keeping and information systems that meet or exceed standards. Newell will be responsible for the quality of lab results, measuring performance of lab staff and equipment, ensuring that lab procedures and policies are followed, and quickly addressing issues.

As health system specialist, Farrell will add to the hospital's performance monitoring capacity, tracking activities of the medical staff to ensure high quality and completing required performance reporting. She will also coordinate updates to the hospital's policies, including the Governing Body Bylaws, and she will help to ensure fast and accurate medical staff credentialing, so that medical staff can focus more time on patient care.

Newell joins IHS from the Dallas VA Medical Center. A Certified Medical Technologist with over 35 years of experience in laboratory testing and management, he has an extensive background in blood banking, clinical microbiology, clinical chemistry, hematology and urinalysis testing. Michael is also a trained and credentialed College of American Pathologists accreditation inspector.

Farrell joins IHS from the Northern Cheyenne Agency at the Bureau of Indian Affairs. She received her degree in Social Sciences from Dine College in 1998 and her master's degree from Arizona State University in 2002. Her background in social services includes working as the Performance Improvement Coordinator for the Tuba City Regional Health Care Corporation.

The Winnebago Service Unit provides comprehensive health care to American Indians and Alaska Natives in the Sioux City area, including members of the Winnebago and Omaha Tribes. For more information about IHS's Winnebago Service Unit, visit

The IHS, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, provides a comprehensive health service delivery system for approximately 2.2 million American Indians and Alaska Natives.