Meet Our New Provider

Elizabeth Incannella, FNP, has joined CRMS Family Medicine.

Calais Community Hospital is pleased to welcome Family Nurse Practitioner Elizabeth Incannella to CRMS Family Medicine.    Elizabeth earned her Bachelors in Nursing with a minor in Developmental Psychology from Husson University in Bangor.   She returned to Husson when she decided to become a Family Nurse Practitioner, earning a Master’s of Science in Nursing with a specialty in Rural Medicine degree.   Elizabeth first worked in Connecticut as a nurse and then at Calais Community Hospital before continuing her education to become a Nurse Practitioner.  Her nursing experience includes oncology, med/surg, obstetrics and emergency.   She is a certified medical surgical nurse.  

Elizabeth says she always knew she wanted to care for people, so the choice to enter the medical field seemed natural.  Once she became a nurse she had great nurse practitioner role models early in her nursing career and felt the pull to move into that role so she could work to keep people healthy and out of the hospital whenever possible.  “I love dealing with whole family units from children to parents and grandparents,” shared Elizabeth.  “Being a nurse practitioner allows me to do this.”

Elizabeth grew up in Connecticut, but with her parents and extended family originally from this area she spent most of her childhood summers here.  Elizabeth is an only child, but is very close to her extended family and cousins.  She is excited to be living in the area, especially now that her parents have relocated back here as well.  “I knew this is where I would land when I wanted to have a career and family,” Elizabeth explained.  “I love this area.” Her summers were spent with her grandparents and extended family in Woodland and Princeton doing the usual outdoors activities our area provides in abundance: fishing, four wheeling, swimming and scouting for wildlife.   In her free time, Elizabeth and her husband like to spend time with friends and family, including their two dogs.   She enjoys walks with her fur babies, watching movies, board games, baking and all the outdoor activities she enjoyed as a child.   

Elizabeth is looking forward to caring for the people of Eastern Washington County and trying to have a positive impact on their health and their life.   She is seeing patients in the CRMS Family Medicine office.   Call 454-8195, option 1 for an appointment or to inquire about her services.  Please take the opportunity to welcome Elizabeth into her new role when the opportunity presents itself.   


CCH and Union Reach Contract Agreement

Calais Community Hospital and the MSNA bargaining unit of RN’s and MT’s have reached a tentative agreement.   The agreement term length is for 2 years.    The two sides reached consensus on the final two points of health insurance and paid time off during negotiations on November 10.  Both sides gave concessions to bring the over 2 year’s long negotiations to a conclusion. 

“I am pleased the negotiations have ended and look forward to continuing as a unified team to care for our patients and community through the pandemic and beyond,”   said CCH CEO Rod Boula. “I appreciate the efforts of all in finding a solution we can all support.”

In a sign of good will the Union has agreed to withdraw the strike notice.

The bargaining unit must still vote to ratify the tentative agreement at a date to be determined.   CCH staff on the MSNA bargaining committee is recommending final approval of the contract. 

CCH Essential Healthcare Services Still Available During Strike

Calais Community Hospital received notice of the Union’s intention to strike November 18 and 19.   The hospital is very saddened that union members have chosen to strike at a time when we are in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic bearing down our on community.    If union members choose to follow through with a strike, the hospital will remain operative.  Essential services will be maintained; however non-emergent or elective services may need to be temporarily suspended.   The CCH Swab and Send COVID-19 testing and pain clinic procedures are examples of such services that may have to be suspended during this two day strike. 

Last year Hospital administration began developing a detailed plan to respond to a strike notice and is confident that essential hospital services will be able to continue as usual.  Knowing a short strike is a common tactic of the union, we felt it was our due diligence to be prepared for this scenario.    There is sufficient skilled non-union staff available to provide clinical services.  If necessary, temporary skilled nurses and techs with experience covering services at striking facilities will be utilized.

We do not believe a strike will bring the parties any closer to agreement.  We have just begun to negotiate with the Technical unit. Since August multiple dates were offered by the hospital to come to the table, but were only accepted twice by the union.  The hospital offered 9 different days from August 21 to September 18 and every day from September 18 through October 16.  The union agreed to meet only on September 18 and October 16. The union offered November 10 and 12 which the hospital accepted. In the meantime, the union provided a strike notice.

The only issues that have separated the hospital and the RN’s and Medical Technologists are health insurance and paid time off.   We have offered the union the exact same health insurance and paid time off as is provided to every other hospital employee, including administrators.  Market analysis shows our insurance and paid time off benefits are in line with other healthcare organizations.  Yet, the union wants more.

This strike is at a time when our community need is high and we find it hard to picture how this choice is beneficial ‘for our patient’ or ‘patient safety’, which is a common theme misused by unions during health organization strikes – even when the dissenting issues are not based on safety.  Sound financial management is beneficial ‘for our patient’ because it enables us to be able to continue providing high quality healthcare and keep jobs in our community. 

The hospital has addressed concerns repeatedly and tried to make this a win-win situation.  CCH Administration will continue to speak up for our patients and work for the best interests of our staff as a whole, not just the 17% who are represented by the union.  We will not be deterred just because we do not agree whole heartedly with the union position or demands. We continue to offer opportunities to negotiate in good faith with the Maine State Nurses Union.   Only together can we strengthen the hospital’s financial position so we can continue to provide great care to this community.  Everyone at Calais Community Hospital is committed to providing high-quality, safe healthcare, from our medical professionals to our administrative staff to our volunteers.  We ask that the Maine Nurses Association join us in putting our patients’ health and safety first.