Women’s health care expands at WinnMed with new OB-GYN

Mayo Clinic Health System Decorah Clinic Physicians is pleased to welcome Obstetrics and Gynecology (OB-GYN) Specialist Mark Ballard, M.D. to WinnMed.

Dr. Ballard comes to northeast Iowa from a private practice in Rapid City, South Dakota. He earned his Bachelor of Science from University of South Dakota and his medical degree from University of South Dakota School of Medicine. Dr. Ballard completed his residency through Keesler Medical Center in Biloxi, Mississippi and is certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Dr. Ballard served in the South Dakota Air National Guard, the Air Force Reserve and the United States Air Force – Active Duty from 1987-2001.

He says, “I was trained to view and treat my patients as if they are family, and to provide the level of care that I would want for my loved ones. I am bringing high-risk experience to the people of northeast Iowa for local care and look forward to helping women of this region with their obstetric and gynecological needs.”

At WinnMed, Dr. Ballard provides:

  • Routine and higher risk prenatal and obstetrical care
  • GYN specialty care and surgery: menstrual irregularities, pelvic masses, female urinary incontinence, cervical disorders
  • Infertility care
  • Contraception care
  • Menopause care
  • Preconceptual counseling

He joins a team of primary and specialty providers who practice full time in WinnMed’s Decorah, Ossian and Mabel medical clinics.

Dr. Ballard says, “Over my career, I have spent considerable time providing OB-GYN outreach care in rural communities. I love the atmosphere of smaller towns and when relocating, my wife and I considered the community as much as the medical practice when making our decision.  Having grown up on a farm in South Dakota, I am drawn to the lifestyle of a rural community. Decorah is clearly thriving and everyone I have met is friendly, welcoming and helpful. The positive morale in northeast Iowa is noticeable and I look forward to becoming a part of the community.”

He adds, “Mayo Clinic’s reputation for providing excellent care is known throughout the world and when the opportunity to join Mayo Clinic Health System and relocate to a smaller community came together, it was an easy decision for my family.” 

Make an Appointment

Dr. Ballard is accepting new patients at WinnMed in Decorah. To schedule an appointment, call 563-382-2911 or request an appointment through MyChart.

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Celebrate the season of giving with WinnMed Auxiliary’s Light for Life

The WinnMed Auxiliary invites the community to celebrate the season of giving through the 2023 Light for Life program.

Light for Life is the Auxiliary’s annual community giving campaign. For a donation of $15 or more, your loved one is honored or remembered with lighted snowflakes in the windows of WinnMed. The snowflakes light up WinnMed each night in December.

This year’s WinnMed Auxiliary Light for Life campaign will support the purchase of two items.

The first item is a Mobile Stairlift chair for the Ambulance department. Emergencies can happen in all locations and structures. The Mobile Stairlift is designed to help EMS staff transport patients up and down stairs safely and efficiently.

The second item will be in-room thermometers for the Med/Surg department, allowing the most-used patient rooms to have a designated thermometer for checking patient vitals. This highly-used equipment will improve staff efficiencies and patient safety.

Donations may be made at WinnMed or forms are available at www.winnmed.org/donate/winnmed-auxiliary  through December 31, 2023. Contributions are tax deductible. For further information, contact the WinnMed Auxiliary at 563-387-3036.

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Allergist Michael D’Netto, M.D. discusses the difference between our region’s seasonal allergens and irritants

Allergist Michael D’Netto, M.D. discusses the difference between our region’s seasonal allergens and irritants – WinnMed

© 2023 WinnMed. All Rights Reserved.

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Hannah Ingvalson, D.O. joins Mayo Clinic Health System at WinnMed

Mayo Clinic Health System Decorah Clinic Physicians is pleased to welcome Hannah Ingvalson, D.O. to WinnMed.

Dr. Ingvalson is a Decorah native and has returned to her hometown to provide family medicine and obstetric care. After graduating Decorah High School, Dr. Ingvalson earned her undergraduate degree from University of Iowa and then went on to Des Moines University for her Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree. She completed her residency through Waukesha Family Medicine Residency at ProHealth Care in Waukesha, Wisconsin. She is Board Certified by the American Board of Family Medicine.

At WinnMed, Dr. Ingvalson provides full-scope family medicine care from birth through end-of-life, as well as obstetric care. She joins a full team of primary and specialty providers who practice full time in WinnMed’s Decorah, Ossian and Mabel medical clinics.

She says, “I look forward to working with my patients to help them achieve optimal wellness and meet their individual health goals. As a family physician with OB, I enjoy providing care to growing families not only throughout pregnancy and delivery, but for many years thereafter.” 

Dr. Ingvalson and her family returned to Decorah to be near extended family and be part of Mayo Clinic Health System. She says, “I joined Mayo Clinic Health System because of their high standards, excellent reputation, and extensive support they offer physicians. WinnMed is the best of both worlds; I am able to develop patient-physician relationships with my community members while also being able to access the resources Mayo Clinic Health System has to offer.” 

Dr. Ingvalson is accepting new patients at WinnMed in Decorah. To schedule an appointment, call 563-382-2911 or request an appointment through MyChart.

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Influenza vaccines available at WinnMed

Influenza season is approaching and it is an important and effective prevention strategy to get a flu shot.

When should I get a flu shot and how long does it last?

Influenza season generally begins in November and ends in March. However, there’s no set timeframe; the flu can start to spread earlier in the fall and last through May. The flu shot protects against the influenza virus for about six months. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends adults get the annual flu shot in September or October. You can benefit from the vaccine even if you don’t get it until after the flu season starts.

What types of vaccine are available this year?

The injection is the quadrivalent flu vaccine, which is designed to protect against four different flu viruses; two influenza A viruses and two influenza B viruses, and is for ages 6 months to 49 years. Flublok, for ages 50-64 years and High Dose, for ages 65+, also protect against four different flu viruses.  Flu mist is not available. 

Who should get a flu shot?

The CDC recommends all people 6 months and older should receive the flu vaccine. It is especially important for pregnant women to get vaccinated because of their increased risk for influenza-related complications. Pregnant women can get vaccinated during any trimester, including the first. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body that protect against flu.

How will flu shots be given this year?

At WinnMed, influenza vaccines will be available through an appointment, though walk-ins will be accepted as the vaccine schedule allows.  (If you have a scheduled appointment for another reason, you may also get a flu shot at that time.)  Flu vaccine charges will be submitted to your insurance. Influenza vaccine is available in WinnMed’s Decorah, Ossian and Mabel Clinics.  Make an appointment by calling:

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WinnMed introduces hyperbaric oxygen therapy to the region

Patients needing pure, pressurized oxygen to promote the healing of chronic wounds can now get that care locally at WinnMed. 

In September, the first hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBO) chamber in the region opened as part of WinnMed’s Wound Center in Decorah.  The chamber was purchased with funds donated to the WinnMed Foundation through their Annual Fund.

What is hyperbaric oxygen therapy?

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy involves breathing pure oxygen in a pressurized environment. This therapy is indicated for certain non-healing wounds, such as a diabetic foot ulcer, radiation injury or osteomyelitis. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is not appropriate for all patients – as with most medical treatments it truly depends on the patient’s condition and needs.

Why is a hyperbaric oxygen chamber beneficial for wound care?

The body’s tissues need an adequate supply of oxygen to function normally, and to heal. When tissue is injured it needs even more oxygen. A hyperbaric oxygen chamber has been proven to enhance tissue oxygenation, stimulate growth factors, reduce inflammation, fight infection and ultimately promote healing.

Steve Mayer, HBO technician at WinnMed, joined the Wound Center team earlier this summer to help build the HBO program.  He came to the area from a long career of providing HBO therapy in Green Bay, Wisconsin.  Mayer says, “It has been my privilege to assist many patients heal problematic wounds, such as radiation injuries from their past cancer treatments, or diabetic ulcers. Some of these patients have literally endured painful, unhealed wounds for years. I have found it very rewarding to see people heal their wounds and regain an improved quality of life and health.”

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy may be recommended in coordination with other wound healing treatments, or independently to address wounds due to radiation injury, sudden hearing loss, or other conditions, as directed by a health care provider.

The WinnMed Wound Center, including hyperbaric oxygen therapy, is led by Caroline Schwickerath, D.O., Mayo Clinic Health System general surgeon and board certified wound specialist.  In addition to Dr. Schwickerath, Wound Center providers include: Bethany Stevens, ARNP; Thomas Marquardt, D.P.M.; Caity Schultz, ARNP; and Jenny Schrandt, ARNP, who will join the team this fall.

To learn more about hyperbaric oxygen therapy, visit www.winnmed.org/service/wound-center.  To schedule a consult, call WinnMed at 563-382-2911 and ask for the Wound Center.

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Allergy specialist joins Mayo Clinic Health System and WinnMed

WinnMed is pleased to share that allergy specialist Michael D’Netto, M.D., M.B.A., has joined the Mayo Clinic Health System practice full time in Decorah, and is accepting new patients.

An allergist helps patients manage allergic and immunologic diseases.  As a Mayo Clinic-trained allergist, Dr. D’Netto provides testing and treatment options for infants through adults who experience food, environmental, medical, venom (insect bites or stings) and other allergies.  He provides skin testing, food and medication challenges, and lung function and immune system testing all at WinnMed in Decorah.  In addition, Dr. D’Netto provides care for patients with asthma and skin conditions like eczema and dermatitis.


Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, Dr. D’Netto received his Bachelor of Science from University of Notre Dame. He then went on to concurrently receive his Master in Business Administration and his medical degree from Ohio State University, completed his residency in Internal Medicine from Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education, and his fellowship in Allergy and Immunology, also from Mayo Clinic.  He is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine, and a member of both the American Academy and American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. 

Dr. D’Netto says, “Personally, I have multiple food and environmental allergies. I hope to help others manage their own allergic and immunologic conditions as well as possible, as others have done for me. I have already started meeting people in the community, starting with the recent community picnic at WinnMed.  This is a welcoming community and I look forward to helping people identify and manage allergies so they can live a full life.”

Schedule an Appointment

To schedule an appointment with Dr. D’Netto at WinnMed in Decorah, call 563-382-2911.

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WinnMed holds annual community picnic Thursday, August 31

WinnMed will hold their Grand Community Picnic on Thursday, August 31 from 4-7 pm on the WinnMed campus. 

Thomas Marquardt, D.P.M., WinnMed Chief Medical Officer, says, “The Community Picnic has become a staple for many individuals and families in the region as summer winds down and the fall season begins. We are honored to host such an event that brings people together. We are inspired daily by the communities we serve, and as we grow with new services and facilities, want to continue to share our thanks to those who trust us with their health care. We hope everyone joins us for the picnic!”

Free Community Picnic Attractions

  • BBQ pork sandwich, chips and a beverage
  • Game/activity area for kids
  • Popcorn from the Lion’s Club
  • Pokey Pete rides
  • Face Painting
  • Live music by Mike McAbee
  • Garden tours
  • Emergency vehicle tours
  • And more!

Moo-Mobile shakes will be available for $2 each throughout the evening.  The WinnMed Foundation, in connection with ReRooted Connections, will also hold a cut stem sale featuring flowers from the WinnMed garden.

More Information

The picnic is made possible with the help of staff volunteers from WinnMed, the WinnMed Auxiliary and WinnMed Foundation, and will be held rain or shine.

Convenient parking will be available, with regular Earl Bus rides from WinnMed parking lots to the event site. Information on the WinnMed Grand Community Picnic is also available at www.winnmed.org/event/grand-community-picnic.  For additional information on the picnic or other WinnMed activities, please call the WinnMed Marketing & Communications department at 563-382-2911 or email communityrelations@winmedical.org.

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WinnMed Hospice ride and breakfast set for June 25

The annual WinnMed Hospice Memorial Ride is set for Sunday, June 25.  The event will begin on the WinnMed campus in Decorah with a free-will donation breakfast, and will be held rain or shine. 

The 2023 event will support new specialty therapies for hospice patients: Pet Therapy, Music Therapy, Massage Therapy and Spiritual Counseling. 

“There are many benefits to the complimentary therapies provided through WinnMed hospice,” says Nancy Haberichter, director of WinnMed Hospice.  “For hospice patients dealing with both physical and emotional pain and anxiety, the therapies can provide positive changes in mood, relaxation, peace and comfort. They reduce anxiety and stress and bring on more social interaction with caregivers and families. These therapies inevitably bring a smile to the faces of patients, which in turn, is a gift to both hospice staff as well as to families.”

Event Details

Free-Will Donation Breakfast

Breakfast is open to the public from 9 -10:30 am in the WinnMed Café Courtyard.  Convenient parking is available in Lot F. The menu includes: French toast and sausages, cinnamon rolls, fruit, coffee and juice.

Poker Run

All vehicles are welcome to participate in the poker run.  The ride entry fee is $20 per person and sign-in is available at WinnMed from 9-10:30 am (during the breakfast). Bikes and cars will take off at 11:00 am from WinnMed to begin the poker run.  The ride will take a tour of the beautiful roads of northeast Iowa and will end at Pivo Brewery in Calmar at 4:30 pm with a silent auction, door prizes and refreshments.

WinnMed Hospice provides end-of-life care that ensures quality of life, compassion and comfort for patients and their loved ones. Services are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to patients and families in Allamakee, Clayton, Chickasaw, Fayette, Howard and Winneshiek Counties. Haberichter says, “We have received such wonderful support from the communities we serve. We are extremely happy to provide all the new therapies to our patients. The Hospice Memorial Ride donations will help to keep these therapies available for a long time to come.” For more information on the Hospice Memorial Ride, contact WinnMed Hospice at 563-387-3024 or ride organizer Daryl Hinton at 563-423-5564.

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