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TIFT REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER
fall 2 0 12
Get the latest from
TRMC by subscribing
to our FREE,
monthly eNewsletter!
Sign up at
www.tiftregional.com.
Expert
Care,
Express
Service
Aging and
Alzheimer’s:
The More
You Know
Keep the
Workplace
Flu-Free
Delivering Quality
Health Care to
Tift County &
South Central
Georgia
Pass Me the…
Germs?
Health columnist Art
Caplan generated
a long string of pro
and con responses
when he reported
that childhood
exposure to germs
may be healthy.
Caplan
cited a study in Science finding that
neonatal exposure to environmental pathogens
surprisingly resulted in better health outcomes for
mice.
Although the study focused on mice rather than
people, it supports a hypothesis that’s been gaining
acceptance since the 1980s. Known as the “hygiene
hypothesis,” the line of thought is that allergies,
asthma, and other immune system-based diseases
are becoming more common because fewer people
are exposed to germs at an early age.
Using antibacterial soap and harsh disinfectants
can cut exposure to “good germs.” So can limiting
a child’s play and work environments. As with
everything, moderation is key.
“This doesn’t mean you should send your child
to chicken pox parties, but it’s okay for your child
to dig in the garden, roll in the grass with her dog,
and wash with old-fashioned soap and water,” says
Nandlal Chainani, MD, pediatrician on staff at Tift
Regional Medical Center. “The takeaway is that
being overzealous about disinfecting can do more
harm than good.”
ON
H E A LT H
2
Dr. Chainani practices with Kids Care Clinic
and is on staff at TRMC. He can be reached at
(229) 386-5101.
Physician Led,
Patient Focused
Did you know the Affinity Hospital Medicine
Program at Tift Regional Medical Center
started with local primary care physicians?
A few years ago, area internal medicine and family practice
physicians encouraged TRMC to implement a hospital
medicine program, a concept that continues to grow in
popularity across the country. Through the program, physicians
called hospitalists are on site at TRMC 24/7 to provide care
to hospitalized patients. This, in turn, allows primary care
providers to dedicate their time to their outpatient practices.
Two-Fold Benefits
As a result, the program enhances both inpatient and
outpatient care. Because hospitalists’ sole responsibility is
caring for inpatients, patients who are hospitalized benefit
from more attentive and efficient treatment. Primary care
providers, on the other hand, can start their practices on
time and do not have to leave during the middle of the
day for hospital emergencies. This reduces delays at their
offices and allows them to see more patients.
Although TRMC does not require primary care
physicians on the medical staff to utilize the Affinity
Hospital Medicine Program, the overwhelming majority of
them have embraced the initiative for its obvious benefits.
Seamless communication with hospitalists keeps primary
care physicians informed of their patients’ treatment, and
they can take over their patients’ care at any time. Once
patients are discharged, they return to their primary care
physicians for follow-up care.
For more information on the Hospital Medicine
Program, please visit www.tiftregional.com.
fall
2012
On the Scene
(Top left) Children in our Annual Diabetes
Day Camp enjoyed arts-n-crafts time. The
free, weeklong camp helps children living
with diabetes learn how to better cope with
their diagnosis and spend time with others
dealing with the same issues.
(Bottom Left) South Georgia received its
share of late-Summer storms. Scott Willis,
Keith Bridges, and Marty Freeman from
our Facilities and Engineering Department
went above and beyond after storms caused
damage in Tifton, cleaning up surrounding
streets.
ON
H E A LT H
(Top right) TRMC representatives from
the Elene Dorminy Women’s Pavilion,
Diabetes Learning Center and Facilities,
and Engineering and Safety Management
participated in the Tift County Emergency
Preparedness Fair, helping educate the
public about what to do in case of a disaster.
3
Memory Loss—or More?
It’s normal to forget a few details every now and then, but memory loss that affects everyday life
may be a sign of something more serious.
As we age, our minds begin to feel
the effects of a lifetime of wear and
tear—just like our bodies do. Changes
in the brain can lead to mild memory
loss, and most older adults experience
some forgetfulness from time to time.
Unfortunately, some people’s loss of
memory worsens to the point that
daily tasks can become increasingly
difficult, a symptom that may indicate
Alzheimer’s disease.
The ABCs of Alzheimer’s
“Alzheimer’s disease is a type of
dementia, but not all dementia is
alike,” says Wendy Vandemark, MD,
psychiatrist on staff at Cook Medical
Center and Tift Regional Medical
Center. “Experiencing memory loss
does not mean you have dementia or
Alzheimer’s. Alzheimer’s refers to a
neurological disease marked by specific
changes in brain function and anatomy.”
The severity and progression of
symptoms distinguish Alzheimer’s
disease from normal forgetfulness.
The Alzheimer’s Association lists
seven stages of Alzheimer’s according
to the severity of symptoms, from “no
impairment” to “very severe decline.”
At first, people with Alzheimer’s may
notice they are forgetting where they
left their car keys more often, or have
trouble remembering details of the
past week. As the disease progresses,
symptoms may include:
• Becoming antisocial
• Becoming easily confused
or frustrated
• Finding it difficult to plan or
solve problems
• Forgetting how to complete
familiar tasks
• Forgetting the day or time
• Having trouble finding the
right word
• Making poor decisions
The Aging Brain
If you’re forgetting things more than
usual, it may be more than just a sign of
age. Age-related memory loss typically
affects both long-term and short-term
memory, so having trouble recollecting
the name of your first-grade math
teacher shouldn’t necessarily cause
concern. However, you should speak with
your primary care physician if you are
particularly worried about memory loss.
Dr. Vandemark practices at the Sylvia
Barr Center, a new 12-bed geriatricpsychiatric unit at Cook Medical Center
(formerly Memorial Hospital of Adel),
and is on staff at TRMC. She can be
reached at (229) 896-8100.
ON
H E A LT H
4
fall
2012
For Urgent Care, Choose Express
Sometimes, minor illnesses and injuries occur outside your regular physician’s
office hours but do not warrant a trip to the emergency department. To better
serve residents needing urgent medical care, Affinity ExpressCare is now open.
Caving
in to Fads
A trend known as the Paleo diet encourages
people to eat like our prehistoric ancestors.
Could this lifestyle be the key to lifelong health?
Developed
To find out more about Affinity ExpressCare, visit
www.tiftregional.com or www.affinity-clinic.com.
Paleo diet can contain high levels of
unnecessary fats that can hurt the heart.
Also, if people following the diet rely
too much on proteins instead of eating
fruits and vegetables, they might not get
the daily intake of fiber they need for
proper digestion.”
Still considering making the switch?
Talk with your physician before making
any major dietary changes.
Dr. Graham practices with Affinity
Clinic and is on staff at TRMC. He
can be reached at (229) 391-4100.
ON
H E A LT H
by Art De Vany
nearly 30 years ago, the Paleo diet
focuses on eating meat, fresh fruits, and
vegetables, as well as nuts and seeds.
Foods such as beans, grains, dairy, sugar,
and alcohol are off limits because these
foods were not available to the huntergatherers of the past. People who follow
the Paleo diet are also encouraged to
avoid consuming gluten, which followers
of the diet feel can harm the body.
“Any diet plan that encourages people
to cut out processed foods can help
foster better eating habits,” says James
Graham, MD, family practice physician
on staff at Tift Regional Medical Center.
“However, red meat common in the
ExpressCare physicians treat both
adults and children older than 18 months of age.
Medical services are available for the treatment of:
• Allergies
• Bronchitis
• Cold and influenza
• Ear infections
• Minor burns
• Rashes
• Sinus infections
• Sore throat
• Sprains and strains
• Urinary tract infections
No appointment is needed for treatment. Located
at 2225 Hwy. 41 North in Tifton, ExpressCare is
open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., Monday through
Friday. Weekend hours vary, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
on Saturdays, and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sundays.
5
Flu Prevention on
Your Schedule
Recognizing
Excellence
The Georgia Department of Community
Health recommends getting a flu
vaccination every year, but between
the back-to-school rush and busy
workloads, schedules can get in the way
of the health of your employees. Now,
WorkSmart Occupational Health Clinic
is bringing the doctor’s office to you.
Through Tift Regional Medical Center’s
WorkSmart program, employers can offer quick and
easy flu shots at their places of business. WorkSmart
nurses travel to banks, industrial businesses, and other
local offices to administer vaccinations during the
months of October, November, and December based
on your work schedule.
“Because influenza strains are different each year,
you should be vaccinated annually,” says Carla Hall,
director of Occupational Medicine at WorkSmart.
“By offering this added convenience, we are helping
create a healthier work environment as well as
healthier employees.”
While the average price per flu shot is approximately
$20, the program offers several coverage methods.
Employers may choose to fund the service in full or
allow employees to contribute to the cost. Flu shots are
also available at the clinic on a walk-in basis. Patients
are simply required to complete a TRMC consent form.
For more information about WorkSmart or to
schedule flu vaccinations for your employees, call
(229) 353-6320.
ON
H E A LT H
6
ee of the Year.
med 2011 Employ
na
s
wa
sh
Bu
ris
Ch
Employees at Tift Regional Medical Center
are honored on a monthly basis by the
generosity of Dr. Sammie D. Dixon.
In 2004, Dr. Dixon established the Sammie D.
Dixon Employee of the Month award through the
TRMC Foundation, through which he donates a
$500 cash award to exemplary employees who
dedicate themselves to TRMC.
Dr. Dixon was the TRMC Foundation’s first chair
from 1985 to 1993. From 1995 to 1996, he was
appointed to the Tift County Hospital Authority. He
retired from practicing medicine in 1996 to become
president/CEO of South Georgia Health Partners
and part-time vice president for medical affairs at
TRMC. In 2000, Dr. Dixon began working at TRMC
on a full-time basis until he retired in 2004.
Dr. Dixon established this award due to his love
and respect for the employees at TRMC.
“The employees at TRMC always did so much for
me during my career here,” Dr. Dixon says. “I wanted
to give back to them for exceptional service in the
health care field.”
For more information or to nominate an
employee of the month, please call the Foundation
at (229) 391-3310 or visit www.trmcf.com.
fall
Dr. Kaine Bro
wn
(pictured fo
urth from
left) represe
nted Tift
Regional M
edical
Center at th
e grand
opening cele
bration.
DEC .
13
Working
Together for You
Tift Regional Medical Center partnered with
four other area hospitals for the South Georgia
Medical Education and Research Consortium,
which recently held its grand opening
celebration. One of the primary goals of the
Consortium is to bring more graduate medical
education opportunities to the region in an effort
to attract more physicians.
“We at TRMC have been committed to and
part of this effort from its beginning,” says Bill
Save the Date!
Guest, MD, vice president of Medical Affairs
at TRMC. “When students can train in South
Georgia, there is a better chance they will want
to eventually set up practice here. It creates a
relationship with other staff members, as well as
with the community in general. It’s also important
for medical students to see that rural medicine
doesn’t mean primitive medicine. We have the
best in technology here in Tifton, and our future
physicians need to know that.”
Certified Breast Care
Join area residents who will honor family
and friends and remember lost loved ones
at the Tree of Life lighting ceremony to
be held on the front lawn at Tift Regional
Medical Center on Thursday, Dec. 13 at
6 p.m. An annual holiday tradition in its
27th year, the Tree of Life is sponsored by
the Tifton Junior Woman’s Club to raise
money for a special fund benefiting patients
of the TRMC Oncology Center and Hospice
of Tift Area who have special needs. With
various giving levels, lights for the tree are
purchased in memory or honor of a special
family member or friend.
For more information or to donate,
call (229) 353-6318.
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ON
Tift Regional Medical Center has been awarded full certification as a breast health
center by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC). Receiving NAPBC accreditation means TRMC uses a multidisciplinary approach
to diagnosing and treating breast disease and has undergone a rigorous application
process and on-site survey to assure national standards are being met.
“Not all hospitals meet these stringent standards,” says Joel Johnson, MD,
general surgeon, hospital board member, and medical director for TRMC’s Tift
Comprehensive Breast Center. “In fact, TRMC is one of only 13 NAPBC-accredited
programs in the state and one of only two in South Georgia.”
NAPBC-accredited programs provide certain components, each of which
contribute to quality patient care. This starts with breast imaging and needle biopsy
services at the TRMC Women’s Imaging Center, followed by interdisciplinary
conferences between radiologists, pathologists, general surgeons, oncologists,
plastic surgeons, and more to develop treatment plans. An important component
is patient navigation, which TRMC offers with women’s health navigator Debra
Hardeman, RN.
2012
H E A LT H
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www.tiftregional.com
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This publication in no way seeks to serve as a substitute for professional medical care. Consult your physician before undertaking any form of medical treatment or adopting any exercise program or dietary guidelines.