Meet our Certified Diabetes Educator

As a diabetes educator, Stacy Biesel, RN, CDE is not only teaching patients about diabetes, she is also serving as a cheerleader, a guide and a support person.

“Diabetes is an American epidemic. A lot of people need help,” said Biesel. “My true passion is dispelling the stigma of diabetes. Patients come to see me and are ashamed, angry, and in denial. I encourage people to be forgiving of themselves, find the positives in their situation, and learn to live a healthy lifestyle.”

According to the American Diabetes Association, each year about 1.5 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes, which in 2015 was the seventh leading cause of death in the United States. A total of 84.1 million Americans age 18 and older were diagnosed with prediabetes in 2015.

Also in 2015, 30.3 million Americans, or 9.4% of the population, had diabetes, with approximately 1.25 million American children and adults having type 1 diabetes. The percentage of Americans age 65 and older with diabetes remains high, at 25.2%, or 12.0 million seniors (diagnosed and undiagnosed).

According the SSM Health’s recent Community Health Needs Assessment, in Columbia County in 2011-2013, 5.8% of the adult population had been diagnosed with diabetes. This figure rose in 2016 to 8.7% making Columbia County slighter higher than the Wisconsin average (8.5%), but lower than the U.S. average (nearly 10%). Diabetes related deaths in Columbia County have also increased from 14.2 to 18.0 per 100,000 people over the same time.

Biesel sees both inpatients and outpatients with type I, type II and gestational diabetes in the hospital and clinic setting.

“I am passionate about educating our patients, their family members, and the professionals that take care of them,” Biesel explained.  “I enjoy working collaboratively with the nursing team and educating them about diabetes.”

In addition to creating an environment of learning and acceptance, Biesel makes sure patients set realistic goals that fit their lifestyle.

“It’s not about perfection. It’s not about diet. It’s about choosing to live a healthy lifestyle,” she said. “If you screw up at one meal or miss a day of exercise, it’s okay. Just get back on track.”

Stacy Biesel, RN, CDE sees inpatients and outpatients with type I, type II, and gestational diabetes at Columbus Community Hospital and at the Prairie Ridge Health Clinic in Beaver Dam. She also plans to provide community outreach education at various locations in and around Columbus.

For more information call Columbus Community Hospital at 920-623-2200.

The following information is courtesy of the American Diabetes Association. For more information visit

What is Prediabetes?
When a person has blood glucose levels that are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes.

Medical professionals sometimes refer to prediabetes as impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) or impaired fasting glucose (IFG). Prediabetes puts a person at risk for developing type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseasedisease of the heart and blood vessels (arteries, veins and capillaries).X.

What is Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is typically diagnosed in children and young adults. Only 5% of people with diabetes have this form of the disease.

In type 1 diabetes, the body does not produce insulin. The body breaks down the sugars and starches you eat into a simple sugar called glucose, which it uses for energy. Insulin is a hormone that the body needs to get glucose from the bloodstream into the cells of the body. With the help of insulin therapy and other treatments, even young children can learn to manage their condition and live long, healthy lives.

What is Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes is a problem with the body that causes blood glucose (sugar) levels to rise higher than normal. This is also called hyperglycemia. Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes.

If a person has type 2 diabetes, the body does not use insulin properly. This is called insulin resistance. At first, the pancreas makes extra insulin to make up for it. But, over time it is not able to keep up and cannot make enough insulin to keep the blood glucose at norm
al levels.


Lights of Love marks 33 years at CCH

The Volunteers of Columbus Community Hospital are currently accepting donations in honor of the 33rd Annual Lights of Love.

Each year, the Lights of Love allows community members to publicly recognize those they have lost or to show appreciation for family and friends through the purchase of a light in their memory or honor. White lights represent those being remembered and colored lights represent those being honored. Blue lights honor members of the United States Military, or a loved one living overseas.

Thank you 24th Annual CCHF Golf Outing supporters

Over 100 golfers showed their support of the Columbus Community Hospital Foundation at the organization’s 24th Annual Golf Classic July 15 at Kestrel Ridge Golf Course in Columbus.

Golfers were placed in three flights based on gross team scores. Prizes were awarded to the top two teams in each flight, as well as the 24th place team overall. Fourteen flag events were awarded. In addition, participants had the opportunity to compete in a putting contest, a beat the pro contest, a beat the CEO contest, and try their chance at four hole-in-one prizes.


Water Birth at Columbus Community Hospital

Heather Kennedy, DO holds Matteo, 4 months old, during a well child visit at SSM Health Clinic in Columbus, WI.
By: Patti Walker
Article Featured in Inspire Magazine

Involvement, the sensation of childbirth, and bonding with her partner, were all things Patty Sanchez-Walker wanted to experience when giving birth to her son Matteo.
"I wanted the opposite of what I experienced when I gave birth to my daughter, Yaritza, 12 years ago when I had an epidural," she explained. "I wanted a natural childbirth with no drugs and wanted to do it myself." 

Sanchez-Walker lives in Burnett, Wisconsin with her husband Rich and three children, including Yaritza, her son Dillon, 11, and Matteo, now 6 months old. "When I found out I was pregnant, I made an appointment with Dr. Heather Kennedy (family practitioner) at the Dean Clinic in Columbus," said San­chez-Walker. "When I explained to Dr. Kennedy what I wanted for my birthing experience, she suggested that I try a water birth." 

World Breastfeeding Week Observed August 1-7

In recognition of World Breastfeeding Week, Columbus Community Hospital is distributing special newborn t-shirts to babies born at the hospital during the month of August. The week, observed August 1-7 each year, promotes breastfeeding infants to improve the health, development, and wellbeing of infants and children, as well as mothers. According to the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA), undernutrition underlies 45% of all deaths of children under 5 annually.


The Importance of Mammograms - A True Life Story as Told by Darlene Marks

At age 74, Darlene Marks had been receiving annual mammograms for years. Being a retired LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse), she understood the importance of receiving a mammogram. But in 2014 she put it off.
“I kept telling myself - I’ve got to do it – and then another day would go by,” she explained.

She remembers vividly the day she found the lump. “That day, I was attending a district meeting as president of the Volunteers of Columbus Community Hospital. Our speaker for the day was a breast cancer survivor who had started a wig program in her community.”

When Darlene went home that night, the speaker’s words stuck with her. After she took her shower she performed a self-check of her breasts. “I discovered a lump,” she said. “You try to tell yourself that it is your imagination. The location of the lump bothered me, so I asked my husband to check.”

#IGotMine; Schedule Your Mammogram Today!

Help Us Safe Lives by Participating in #IGotMine

Breast cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer death among women in the United States. 

According to the American Cancer Society, about 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer and about 1 in 36 women will die from breast cancer. Breast cancer is associated with increased age, obesity, alcohol use and hereditary factors. Since 1990, breast cancer death rates have declined progressively due to advancements in treatment and detection. 


CCH continues to help explosion victims

COLUMBUS, Wis. (WMTV) A hospital is a place where patients are treated, but Columbus Community Hospital is helping a community nearby in a different type of way.

The hospital started a penny war three weeks ago as a fun way to raise money for a good cause. They have collected 192 lbs of coins and cash that they will be donating soon to the Old Mill Foundation that benefits those affected by the explosion. The penny war isn't the first way the hospital has helped those in need after the explosion.