Ventilator care and liberation

Ventilator care

We provide specialized care for patients who are ventilator-dependent.

Admissions phone: 320-864-7719
Admissions fax: 320-864-7898

Glencoe Regional Health Services (GRHS) is one of the few non-metro Minnesota health care facilities to provide specialized care for patients aged 18 and older who are ventilator-dependent.

Mechanical ventilation is a life-saving therapy, but it also increases a patient’s risk of developing a lung infection or other serious complication. Our goal is to liberate patients who were placed on a ventilator during an acute care hospital stay.

Individualized care plan
We implement a progressive weaning protocol that is tailored to the patient’s needs, while also providing complex nursing care for any underlying non-respirator issues that may limit the patient’s success in the weaning process, such as infection or weakness.

100-day stay supports liberation process
As a Medicare-certified critical access hospital, GRHS is able to keep ventilator-dependent patients in our hospital transitional care unit (TCU) for up to 100 days. This allows more time for addressing underlying conditions and implementing a gradual weaning process that is typically possible in an acute care or LTAC hospital.

Some patients may not be able to achieve independence from mechanical ventilation. In the event that the liberation process is not successful, we prepare the patient for discharge to the most appropriate setting for their needs and overall health status, whether that is a skilled nursing facility or home.

Ventilator care services
We support patients with tracheostomies and/or mechanical ventilation with the following services:

  • Liberation readiness assessment
  • Individualized care plan
  • Two full-time respiratory therapists on staff
  • Weaning trials and support
  • Swallow evaluation and therapy
  • Speech therapy
  • Nutritional monitoring and introduction of solid foods
  • Tracheostomy cleaning and care
  • Non-invasive positive pressure ventilation and other respiratory assist devices

Our respiratory therapy offices and treatment rooms are located adjacent to the TCU to allow for convenient access to equipment and rapid therapist response to patient needs.

Meet our respiratory therapy team
Referring facilities may contact Bob Fairbanks, RRT, RPSGT, manager of respiratory care services, with any questions about ventilator care or admissions. Bob can be reached at (320) 864-7734.

Bob Fairbanks, RRT, RPSGT Bob Fairbanks, RRT, RPSGT

Bob is a registered respiratory therapist and registered polysomnography technologist. He earned his associate’s degree in respiratory therapy from the Mayo School of Health Sciences in Rochester and his bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology from The College of St. Scholastica in Duluth. Bob performs lung-function tests, administers cardiac stress tests and provides vent care management and respiratory rehab services. He enjoys the variety his job offers, especially being able to help patients throughout the hospital. In addition to providing respiratory therapy, Bob is the manager of respiratory care services at GRHS.

Dan Werth, RRT Daniel Werth, RRT-NPS

Dan is a registered respiratory therapist and neonatal pediatric respiratory care specialist trained to perform lung-function tests for patients who have problems with their breathing, whether ongoing or episodic. He received his training at Inver Grove Community College and St. Paul Technical College. Dan belongs to the American Association for Respiratory Care and the Minnesota Society for Respiratory Care. A firefighter for 20 years and an ambulance EMT, Dan is grandfather of two and enjoys helping people, especially children.



1805 Hennepin Ave. N., Glencoe, MN 55336
320-864-3121 or 1-888-526-4242 | Map

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