NEWS STORIES

Ministry Health Care to Merge With Ascension Health AllianceSubmitted: 09/06/2012

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MILWAUKEE - A Northwoods health giant will join forces with a St. Louis-based Catholic health system.

Ministry Health Care operates nine hospitals in the viewing area, including centers in Rhinelander, Eagle River, Woodruff, Merrill, and Park Falls.

Its parent company, Marian Health Company, plans to align with Ascension Health Alliance of St. Louis.

The changes should be nothing but positive.

"Overall, there will not be and should not be any disruption to the patient experience or to the delivery of care for any of our hospitals or clinics," Ministry VP of Marketing Vince Gallucci said.

Ministry and Marian wanted to join a large, national health non-profit to have access to more capital and medical knowledge from the best providers nationwide.

"The scale of Ascension Health is large, and with that size organization, there's plenty of best practices that we can find across the other 27 systems of Ascension Health," Gallucci said.

The deal's not official yet, but the final details should be worked out by next March.

Story By: Ben Meyer

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 IN OTHER NEWS
Wisconsin DNR lightens 22 year restrictions on largemouth bass Submitted: 04/21/2014

WISCONSIN - Anglers in northern Wisconsin can keep largemouth bass this season for the first time in 22 years.

The bass season has been catch-and-release in northern Wisconsin since 1992.

But DNR leaders say the fish is doing so well that this year anglers can take them home. The largemouth season runs from May 3 to March 1, 2015.

Some restrictions still apply on smallmouths in the northern zone, however. Anglers still must immediately release smallmouth bass caught between May 3 and June 20.

But between June 21 and March, they can take home smallmouth bass that are 14 inches long.

Daily bag limits are five bass total

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OWI hefty, but not enough to keep from drunk driving Submitted: 04/21/2014

WISCONSIN - OSHKOSH, Wis. (AP) — The fine for a first drunken-driving offense, including court costs and surcharges, can be as high as $1,000. But industry experts are questioning whether heavy fines serve as effective enough deterrents.

A Northwestern Media report says the actual fine ranges from $150 to $300. But court costs can add $600 to $700.

Nina Emerson is a former director of the Resource Center for Impaired Driving at the University of Wisconsin Law School. She says a hefty fine is a "hollow threat." She says options like sobriety checkpoints are what get people's attention.

Democratic state Representative Jon Richards of Milwaukee says fines play an important role in deterring drunken drivers. He says it's just one part of the deterrence effort, and he'd like to see overall penalties get tougher.

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Celebrating Easter Sunday traditionally Submitted: 04/20/2014

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RHINELANDER - People celebrate Easter Sunday in different forms of fashion.

Some might have Easter breakfast or have their own Easter Egg Hunt.

Others might take a traditional route and head to church.

Newswatch 12’s Shardaa Gray found out how one church celebrates Easter Sunday.

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First indoor Easter egg huntSubmitted: 04/20/2014

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MANITOWISH WATERS - Most Easter egg hunts take place outside.

But with the recent snow fall, some were in danger of being canceled.

One Northwoods camp found an alternative to keep the festivities going.

Camp Jorn YMCA in Manitowish Waters hosted their first Easter Egg Hunt.

More than 30 kids ran around inside of the camp.

Camp Jorn daycamp director says they got the idea from Boulder Junction's Easter Egg Hunt.

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Wisconsin DNR assessing winter deer killSubmitted: 04/20/2014

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MADISON - Wisconsin wildlife officials are using road-kill and radio-tracking data to assess the harsh winter's effect on the state's deer herd.

Department of Natural Resources staffers are looking for 10 carcasses in every county so they can check a number of biological signs, such as fat stores and pregnancy.

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Support for survivors of suicide Submitted: 04/20/2014

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RHINELANDER - Losing someone to suicide can be difficult.

But it's a reality some families in the Northwoods have to live with.

The suicide rate in north-central Wisconsin has gone up in 2013.

Suicide experts believe high levels of depression and alcoholism in Wisconsin contribute to more suicides.

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Celebrating Easter in the snowSubmitted: 04/19/2014

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RHINELANDER - Snow on the ground can’t keep the Easter bunny away in the Northwoods.

Hundreds of kids and their families searched for Easter eggs in Rhinelander on Saturday.

“Even with the snow and the slush, they love running around and getting out there and getting the eggs,”said Nicole Polkowski, the Rhinelander Area Optimist Club president.

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