Eddie Read with this daughter Niccole and son Douglas
William “Eddie” Read passed away on January 3, 2023, after a battle with cancer. Eddie served as Chief Financial Officer of Hamilton Healthcare System. Co-workers remember him fondly.
Janice Lewis, Revenue Cycle Director, mentioned a story that Eddie’s wife K-Linn told when reminiscing about him. One of his past bosses told Eddie that he cared too much about everyone. Eddie replied, “If that’s the worst thing you can say about me then I’m doing pretty well in life.”
“I feel so fortunate that Eddie took a chance on me and moved me from the Business Office to Materials Management. For me there was a learning curve to be sure, but in the beginning, he met with me weekly and offered a lot of guidance which I am grateful for. Eddie knew his stuff, but certainly wasn’t a ‘stuffed shirt’...we could always count on him having a really bad ‘Dad’ joke.“
-Jill Thomas, Material Management Director
“Eddie Read was a wonderful CFO to work for. I loved listening to his ‘dad jokes.’ When it came to collecting revenue he was always about ‘Let’s Make a Deal.’ I will cherish the memories we had with him, especially breakfast with Eddie, and glad we are continuing to make breakfast for employees in his honor quarterly. He was a huge impact on our Healthcare System, and will be truly missed but never forgotten.”- Miranda Stephens, Patient Access/Training Manager
“Eddie was hard working and truly one of a kind! He had a mind for business but a heart for people!! He was a constant encourager for our HHS Team!“ -Jeanette Luckie, Clinical Director
the team that cares for
Hamilton Healthcare System employees live by the Momma Rule coined by Chief of Staff Dr. Randy Lee, “Treat everyone like you would treat your momma.”
Thanks to the generosity of our donors, Hamilton General Hospital Healthcare Foundation has been instrumental in bringing state-of-the-art women’s health services to Hamilton General Hospital.
Through the purchase of a 3D digital mammography unit, Central Texas mommas now have convenient access to improved breast cancer detection and reduced call-backs.
A 501(c)3 organization, HGH Healthcare Foundation maintains the legacy of ensuring vital healthcare services now and for the future of Hamilton County and our service areas.
Join us in supporting the healthcare team that cares for you and your momma. Donate today.
rees are living things that respond to the year’s cycles. Care for your trees based on the seasons to ensure they stay healthy.
Winter: Prune when it is easy to read the shape of a tree. This promotes new growth during spring. The first rule of pruning: Don’t prune without good reason.
Spring: Look for pests, as this is when insects will become active again. Don’t prune your tree — this is a time of peak growth.
Summer: Prune as trees slow down their growth during the hot months.
Fall: Plant new trees when soil is cool, and the wetter weather can help establish healthy root foundations. Don’t prune, as it can aid the growth of fungus, and trees will take longer to heal during the long winter.
General Pruning Guidelines
• Eliminate dead limbs to ensure healthy growth.
• Prune regularly (depending on the type of tree).
• Prune after a storm if you see any damaged or loose limbs.
• Prune a newly planted tree during the first year.
• Prune within 10 feet of a utility conductor -- let a professional take care of that.
tart Berry Cherry
Perfect for dessert, Easter brunch and even festive enough for the Fourth of July. This Berry Cherry Tart is lighter than other cheesecake pastries but equally delicious.
1 frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 cup non-fat vanilla yogurt
3 Tbsp. cheesecake-flavored instant pudding mix
Health Benefits of Cherries
Cherries are nutrient-dense stone fruits. While they come in a variety of colors, the two main categories are sweet and tart. They are a great source of fiber, vitamin C and potassium.
¾ cup fresh blueberries
¾ cups fresh cherries, pitted and halved
1. Remove pastry puff from freezer, let thaw for 15-20 minutes. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper and unfold puff pastry on the baking sheet.
3. Using a sharp knife, score a 1 ½ inch border around the edge of the pastry sheet. Do not cut all the way through. Prick the center of the sheet thoroughly using a fork.
4. Bake in the oven for 10 -12 minutes until golden. The pastry will puff in the oven, remove, and let cool. Carefully press down the center of the puff sheet.
5. In a medium bowl, mix together yogurt and 3 Tbsp of the instant pudding mix.
6. Pour pudding mixture in the center of the cooled pastry, spreading evenly.
7. Top with fresh blueberries and cherries.
8. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator covered for one day to minimize soggy crust.
Per serving:120 calories, 5 g total fat, 2.5 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 125 mg sodium, 19 g carbohydrate, 1 g dietary fiber, 19 g sugars, 2 g protein, 26 mg calcium, 1 mg iron, 57 mg potassium.
Protect your heart
Many studies show that diets rich in fruits are associated with a reduced risk of heart disease. Cherries are rich in nutrients and compounds that are known to promote heart health, including potassium and polyphenol antioxidant including anthocyanins, flavonols and catechins that protect against cellular damage and reduce inflammation.
Improve sleep quality
Eating cherries or drinking tart cherry juice may help improve your sleep quality. Their sleeppromoting benefits may be attributed to the fruit’s high concentration of plant compounds. Additionally, cherries contain melatonin, a substance that helps regulate your sleep-wake cycle.
Health Benefits of Kale
A member of the cabbage family, Kale is a crisp and hearty vegetable, with a hint of earthiness. Younger leaves and summer leaves tend to be less bitter and fibrous. Kale is often labeled a superfood because it is so high in nutrients.
Reduces cancer risk
Kale is one of the cruciferous vegetables shown to have anti-cancer properties. It contains glucosinolates, which are compounds being researched for their potential ability to manage certain health conditions in humans, including certain types of cancer.
Kale is high in Vitamin K providing 80 micrograms per cup. Vitamin K is important for bone health, as well as for clotting blood. Vitamin K deficiency is associated with osteoporosis; studies have shown that supplementation has a positive effect on the bone health of postmenopausal women.
Maintain healthy weight
Kale and other dark green vegetables provide great nutritional benefits for very few calories. The fiber and protein in kale can also help you to feel full and satisfied after eating. Studies show that diets higher in vegetables are associated with greater weight loss.
In one study, half-cup of kale juice per day increased helpful HDL cholesterol by 27% and lowered artery-clogging LDL cholesterol in just 12 weeks in one study.
The glycemic load of kale is estimated to be 3, making it a low-glycemic food. Glycemic load indicates a food's impact on blood sugar and, unlike the glycemic index, takes portion size into account when estimating this effect.
7 CALORIES PER CUP
52 mg CALCIUM
This simple Kale Quiche is the perfect dish for easy weeknight dinners, make-ahead lunches or unexpected brunches!
1.5 cup liquid egg
¾ cup skim milk
½ tsp. salt
½ cup part skim ricotta cheese
⅓ cup skim shredded mozzarella
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
2 ½ cups kale, chopped
1 frozen pie crust
1. Clean prep area and preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Beat liquid egg with a mixer for about 20 seconds.
3. Add milk and salt to the eggs and beat on medium speed until well combined (about 1 minute).
4. While the eggs are mixing, add the kale, tomatoes, ricotta and mozzarella cheese to pie crust.
5. Pour the egg mixture over all ingredients.
6. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes.
7. Let cool before serving. Cut into 8 slices and enjoy!
Per serving: 170 Calories, 8g total fat, 3g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 10 mg cholesterol, 370g sodium, 15g total carbohydrate, 0g dietary fiber, 3g sugars, 10g protein, 125 mg calcium,2 mg iron, 220 mg potassium.
Nutrition and Weight Loss
hen it comes to weight loss, there is no shortage of gimmicks and fad diets. Not only can these be costly, but they tend to fail in the long run and can be damaging to your health. The key to achieving and maintaining your healthy weight loss goals is a lifestyle change based on healthy eating and regular physical activity.
Hamilton Healthcare System offers specialized nutrition counseling to help you begin that healthy lifestyle. The program is guided by a registered dietitian that will customize a nutrition plan tailored to your unique needs and goals. Best of all, nutrition counseling may be available at no out-ofpocket expense.
If your BMI is 30 or greater, the program may be covered by insurance or Medicare.
and why they are important
What are carbohydrates? One of the main nutrients found in our food that contribute calories. There are three macronutrients – fats, proteins and carbohydrates -- and a balanced diet includes all three.
Why are carbohydrates important?Krista Lindley, MS, RD, LD, CDCES Diabetes Coordinator
Carbohydrates serve as our primary source of energy. Fiber is an important carbohydrate that supports bowel health, weight management and blood sugar control.
Is it safe and sustainable to eliminate or minimize carbohydrates for weight loss? Strict low carb diets tend to be difficult to sustain, but if prolonged can increase risk of certain nutritional deficiencies if the diet plan is not well thought out. It’s more realistic to include portion-controlled healthy
carbohydrates balanced with lean proteins and plenty of non-starchy vegetables to support healthy, long-term weight loss.
I recommend working with your healthcare team when initiating significant dietary changes to develop a realistic meal plan that meets individual nutrient needs.
What are the dangers of not consuming enough carbohydrates? Signs of low carbohydrate intake may include fatigue, headaches, difficulty concentrating and GI issues.
What are examples of healthy carbs?
High fiber grains, legumes, fruits and vegetables.
What kind of carbs should be avoided or limited in a healthy diet?
Refined, processed carbohydrates should be limited. These usually are low in fiber and/or high in added sugars.
Krista Lindley has worked as a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator since 2012 at Hamilton Healthcare System. In addition to diabetes education, Krista also conducts nutrition and weight loss counseling. If you have a BMI of greater than 30, insurance may cover the cost of the program. For more information, call Krista at 254-386-1531.
quinoa Black Bean & Corn
A flavorful alternative to beans and rice, this healthy low-fat dish is full of healthy carbohydrates. Serve it as a side with a lean meat or make it the main dish on Meatless Monday.
1 tsp. vegetable oil
1 whole onion, chopped
3 whole cloves garlic, chopped
¾ cup quinoa
1 ½ cups vegetable broth
1 tsp. ground cumin
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
salt and black pepper to taste
1 cup frozen corn kernels
2 cans black beans (15 oz.) rinsed and drained
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; cook and stir until lightly browned, about 10 minutes.
2. Mix quinoa into onion mixture and cover with vegetable broth; season with cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper.
3. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer until quinoa is tender and broth is absorbed, about 20 minutes.
4. Stir in frozen corn and continue to simmer until heated through, about 5 minutes.
5. Mix in black beans and cilantro.
Per serving: 153 Calories, 2g total fat, 28g total carbohydrate, 8g dietary fiber, 2g sugars, 8g protein, 517g sodium, 41 mg calcium,2 mg iron, 333 mg potassium.
ask the doc
Family Practice Rural Health Clinic
400 N. Brown, Bldg II Hamilton, TX 254-386-1700
Monday -Thursday 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Friday 7 a.m. - 5 p.m.
104 Walnut Hico, TX 254-796-4224
Monday 8 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Wednesday 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Family Practice Clinic
1501 W. Front Street Goldthwaite, TX 325-648-2850
Monday and Thursday 8 a.m. - 7 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
s springtime draws near, I’m often reminded of the old adage “April showers bring May flowers.”
Rain is always a blessing in central Texas; but unfortunately, many women are dealing with drips and leakage all year long – and I’m not referring to the weather.
What is Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI?) SUI is the involuntary loss of urine with exercise or daily activity. Stress incontinence occurs in approximately 25-35% of women.
Who is most at risk for Stress Urinary Incontinence?
Stress incontinence is most common in women. Risk factors for SUI include increasing age, multiple prior pregnancies, vaginal childbirth, being overweight, diabetes, family history of SUI and pelvic organ prolapse (a.k.a. “a falling bladder”).
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Chronic Care Management
We offer Chronic Care Management Services to coordinate your healthcare needs for chronic conditions. If you have any of the following conditions you may be eligible with little to no cost for your care. Call today to learn more.
Why does stress incontinence happen?
Keeping ourselves dry is actually a complicated process and involves multiple different body parts. The female bladder is supported by muscles and ligaments in the pelvis. When those muscles become loose and lose their strength, the urethra is not strong enough to keep the bladder closed at all times. So, when you cough or lift a heavy weight, the pressure in your body gets high enough that it forces some urine to leak out.
What are the common symptoms of SUI?
Women often complain of leaking small (or sometimes large!) amounts of urine when they cough, sneeze, laugh, lift heavy objects, exercise or move quickly. These women often have to wear pads or panty liners throughout the day in order to avoid wetting their underwear. Oftentimes, because they don’t want to leak, they will avoid activities like going to the gym. And when allergy season hits, all that sneezing can make for a very inconvenient time.
Ray’s City Drug
1 in 3 women suffer from SUI at some point in their lives.
Solutions for Stress Incontinence
What can I do to fix my stress incontinence?
Fortunately, there are multiple excellent treatment options for SUI.
Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy: The most conservative option is Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy. This is an exercise program that helps you strengthen and better control the muscles surrounding your bladder. This is non-invasive and not painful, but it does take lots of practice.
Incontinence Pessary: Another option is called an incontinence pessary. This is a small device, usually made of rubber or silicone, that you insert into the vagina to help support the urethra. This therapy is usually better for women who are older, frail or not good candidates for surgery.
Bulking Injection: The next option is a bulking injection, which is an approximately 10 minute outpatient procedure where a hydrogel is injected into the lining of the urethra to help “bulk” it up. This procedure has essentially no risks and is very successful, and the nice part is there is no recovery down time–you could go back to work the next day.
Mid-Urethral Sling: The last option, but often the most successful, is implantation of a mid-urethral sling. This is a thin piece of mesh that is placed to support the bladder via a small incision in the vagina. This is an approximately 45-minute outpatient surgery, and you usually can return to light duty at work within a few days. This mesh is safe and is the most effective and most well-studied treatment for SUI.
So, if you or someone you know is bothered by incontinence, please make an appointment to come see me in Hamilton or in Waco, I would be happy to help you get back to a dry life.
Dr. Tyler A. Stewart is a Urologist with Ascension Medical Group Providence Urology in Waco. He graduated at the top of his class at the UT Health Science Center in San Antonio. Dr. Stewart has received multiple awards such as the Endoscopic Excellence Award, the Preston Littrell "Best Resident" Award and multiple UTHSCSA Urology Department awards among others. He treats men and women of all ages and sees patients at the Family Practice Rural Health Clinic in Hamilton.
ime marches on leaving wrinkles, deepened tear troughs, age spots and unwanted hair in its wake. Hamilton’s first med spa, R&R Skin and Body offers convenient, personalized solutions with a natural approach.
Tim Rudolph, M.D. and Hope Rudolph, RN have undergone specialized training in the field of aesthetic medicine to bring non-invasive cosmetic treatments including Botox, fillers, chemical peels, laser hair removal, medical-grade skin care and IPL photofacial skin rejuvenation to rural central Texas.
“As we age, we lose subcutaneous tissue, fat, collagen and elasticity,” said Dr. Rudolph.
Through aesthetic medicine, the team at R&R work to rebuild those subcutaneous structures adding volume and firmness for a more youthful appearance.
“We take a conservative approach and aim for a natural look,” said Hope.
“So natural that no one knows you’ve been treated,” said Dr. Rudolph.
Dr. Rudolph has practiced family medicine in Hamilton and Mills counties. He currently serves as medical director for Hamilton Healthcare System’s Emergency Medical Services and treats patients
through Hamilton General Hospital’s emergency room.
Aesthetic medicine has been an area of interest since his residency, he says. Shifting his practice to the ER allowed him to pursue further training in aesthetics.
“Hope is very gifted in that space,” he said. “She has an eye for beauty and balance.”
Quality and precision are of utmost importance to the team who pay very close attention to subtle imperfections.
“It’s important,” said Hope, who stresses that they are very critical of their work and want their clients to be completely satisfied with the results.
Satisfaction begins with a free consultation where the Rudolphs visit with clients about their goals, evaluate skin type and sensitivities, educate about the process and develop a plan to reach those goals. Often, the consultation transitions to the first treatment but the Rudolphs stress that there is no pressure.
“Start simple,” said Hope. “It doesn’t have to be complicated.”
“We don’t want to be rushed,” said Dr. Rudolph. “The atmosphere is relaxed and happy. People are excited to be here.”
While he loves the relaxed atmosphere, Dr. Rudolph says the most rewarding part
of this practice is the confidence patients have when they leave.
“We are seeing so many things that you don’t realize bother people and how much they have been affected their entire lives,” he said. “Seeing their confidence restored is a rewarding thing.”
Through laser and light treatment, they can even pigmentation to remove dark spots, treat vascular lesions like small cherry hemangiomas and spider veins, improve skin firmness and texture, alleviate hyperhidrosis or sweaty armpits and remove unwanted hair.
Laser hair removal is very popular in the spring. It takes six to eight treatments to complete depending on skin and hair type, but the results eliminate the need to pluck, shave, wax or bleach.
“When it’s gone, it’s gone,” said Hope with a smile.
Fine lines and wrinkles can be reduced with Botox and fillers, which can also be used for lip, cheek and facial enhancement and scar repair.
“I really enjoy filler,” said Dr. Rudolph. “The results are immediate.”
While they have used Botox in therapies for TMJ and migraine relief, the Rudolphs say most of their treatments are cosmetic, and they are not limited to women.
evitalize Renew at Hamilton's first med spa
Yes, men get Botox, fillers, light-treatments and chemical peels, which reduce fine lines and wrinkles while improving skin texture and tone, even out discolorations and treat acne. Laser hair removal for neck and back hair is also popular.
“We are big proponents of high-quality skin care,” said Dr. Rudolph. “It is the most important investment you can make in your daily regimen.”
R&R Skin and Body carries a full medical grade skin care line from PCA Skin, an Irving-based company. The line includes cleansers, moisturizers, anti-aging peptides, Vitamin C, Vitamin K and retinols with a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee.
“There is a huge benefit to medical grade skin care. I’ve seen it,” said Dr. Rudolph. “Clients respond better to treatment, and
they recover better.”
The Rudolphs researched skin care lines looking for high quality at an affordable price.
“It has a moderate price point,” said Dr. Rudolph, who explains that a little goes a long way. “We didn’t want to carry anything we didn’t use.”
An outdoorsman who enjoys his free time on the water in the sun, Dr. Rudolph stresses the importance of sunscreen and admits it took effort to develop the habit of applying sunscreen every day.
“Skin protection is number one,” he said. “Sunscreen should be worn daily. For women, its more intrinsic since it is in nearly all foundation. Men need to be wearing sunscreen daily.”
R&R Skin and Body is located at
Care Runs Deep in Rural Hamilton
At Hamilton Healthcare System our care runs deep for you and your family. While visiting our hospital, outpatient services and our caring providers, take time to experience Rural Hamilton. Great places to eat and stay, while hunting and fishing, and enjoying the ranch and wildlife. Sip and shop as you explore historic architecture and more. It’s small town charm in the big Texas Hill Country. We look forward to seeing you soon!
222 North Bell Street alongside Kunkel Chiropractic, massage therapists April Kunkel, Bree Lester and Cassidy Taylor and Classical Homeopathy by Barbara Konwent.
“Privacy is important,” said Dr. Rudolph. “When you are here, no one knows whether you are getting a treatment, adjustment, massage or seeing Basha.”
Scheduling can be made via phone or online. Treatments can often fit easily and conveniently into a lunch hour.
“Come sit down and talk with us,” said Dr. Rudolph. “A consultation is free. We do a lot of education. At the very least, you will walk away with a better understanding of what we can do, and it may reinforce principles you are already doing.”
Why a Roth IRA account is becoming a top investment tool for some Americans
here are many benefits to contributing to a Roth IRA with one of the main ones being that all distributions from the account can be tax free.
In recent years IRA adoption was particularly strong among young women investors, with a 92% year-over-year increase among Gen Z and 24% among millennials, according to CNBC.
Thinking about opening or contributing to a Roth IRA? Learn more about the benefits of this type of retirement account and your possible eligibility to contribute.
Tax Free Distributions
The key benefit of Roth IRAs is that all distributions from the account can be tax free.
Although contributions to a Roth
earnings grow free of taxes. When you reach age 59 1/2, if the Roth IRA has been in place for at least five years, any withdrawal from the contributions and earnings is tax free.
Avoiding the tax bite at the time of withdrawal in retirement can be attractive – particularly for investors who anticipate having a higher marginal income tax rate at the time of withdrawal than they do at the time of contribution.
No Required Minimum Distributions
There are no required minimum distributions. While distributions from a traditional IRA must begin upon reaching age 73, there are no similar requirements for a Roth IRA.
No Age Limit Contributions
There is no age limit on contributions. You can continue contributing to your IRA – Roth or traditional – as long as you have earned income.
Penalty-Free Withdrawals for First Home Purchase
Withdrawals may be made ithout penalty for a first-time home purchase. As with a traditional IRA, you can withdraw
funds from your Roth IRA (up to a lifetime maximum of $10,000) to make a down payment on a first-time home purchase. A first-time homebuyer is defined as someone who has not owned a home for two years prior to the purchase of the new home.
Increased Max Contribution
In 2023, the max contribution to your Roth IRA has increased. It is now $6,500 if you’re younger than 50, and $7,500 if you’re 50 or older. The full Roth contribution limit is available to individuals filing as single or head of household if your Modified Adjusted Gross Income is less than $138,000 for tax year 2023, and if you’re married and file jointly, your Modified Adjusted Gross Income must be less than $218,000 for tax year 2023.
The nice thing about the Roth IRA is you can choose how often or how seldom you’d like to contribute to it, just as long as you don’t exceed the max contribution.
If you are ready to open a Roth IRA of your own, or just ready to sit down and create a plan for your finances, our team at Melanie J. Financial can help you with all your financial needs. Meeting with us is always free of charge.
Over the course of her professional career as a financial advisor, Melanie J. Housden, AAMS®, has been on a continual journey to provide better opportunities with lower cost to clients. Today, her ongoing due diligence has led to the creation of Melanie J Financial, LLC, an independently owned and operated financial planning and investment advisory practice located in Hamilton, Texas, and her affiliation with Raymond James Financial Services. Melanie is both founder of Melanie J Financial and a Wealth Management Advisor with RJFS. Melanie and the team at Melanie J. Financial bring more than two decades of financial planning experience to Central Texas. Her office includes multiple licensed wealth planners to give you the best option for your financial future. Outside of work, Melanie loves spending time with her family, traveling and shopping. An advocate for her community, Melanie has volunteered and served on numerous organizational boards. She is currently a Board of Director for the Hamilton Economic Development Corporation and is a board member for the St. John Lutheran Academy.
Investing involves risk and investors may incur a profit or a loss. Past performance may not be indicative of future results. Diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Your financial advisor can answer any questions you may have about the features and benefits of IRAs and help determine which type may be appropriate for addressing your retirement needs. Securities offered through Raymond James Financial Services, Inc., member FINRA / SIPC. Investment advisory services offered through Raymond James Financial Services Advisors, Inc.. Melanie J. Financial , LLC is not a registered broker/dealer and is independent of Raymond James Financial Services.
eart disease is the number one cause of death in women,” said Dr. Clay Barbin, a cardiologist at Waco Cardiology Associates. “It is higher than all the cancers combined. The numbers are so staggering. It’s important that we don’t overlook the symptoms.”
Dr. Barbin says the reason cardiac symptoms are often overlooked in women is that women have more atypical symptoms.
In the case of a blockage, men typically complain of what feels like an elephant sitting on their chest or a pain so intense it takes their breath away. Not so in women, he says.
“Symptoms in women, especially diabetic women, may be shortness of breath, pain in their jaw, nausea or spikes of sweating,” said Dr. Barbin. “If you are experiencing these symptoms, it is important to reach out to your primary care physician.”
Symptoms may be stable or unstable. Stable symptoms present during exertion, like walking or exercise, but go away when you stop and rest. Stable symptoms may be a sign of a fixed blockage so it is important to consult with your primary care physician. Unstable symptoms can happen during exercise or at rest.
“If symptoms don’t go away, that’s a red flag,” said Dr. Barbin. “Call emergency services or go to the ER for evaluation.”
Unstable symptoms may indicate unstable plaque or an active
cardiac event and need to be managed differently.
“The name of the game is prevention,” said Dr. Barbin.
Traditional risk factors for heart disease include obesity, smoking, hypertension or high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Unique risk factors for women include complication during pregnancy, like gestational diabetes or preeclampsia. Additionally, changes in hormones during menopause may increase a woman’s risk for heart disease.
Dr. Barbin says reducing the modifiable risk factors is a great way to start caring for your heart.
“If you smoke, work with your primary care physician to stop,” he said. “It is the hardest thing you will do with the greatest impact on your health.”
Adding daily activity is also important.
“Inactivity makes all the others worse,” he said.
Treating high blood pressure and high cholesterol is important. That might mean a lifestyle change or medication.
“For years we met our patients after they had a heart attack,” said Dr. Barbin. “Now there are so many tools to reduce these risk factors.”
He encourages heart screening as early as the 30s or 40s depending on your risk factors.
“If your father or mother had a heart attack in their 40s or 50s, there is a good chance that you have a genetic predisposition,” he said.
A coronary artery calcium score is a screening tool that can help providers evaluate your risk level and formulate appropriate treatment options to avoid a cardiac episode like a heart attack or stroke.
“It is a game changer in preventative cardiology,” said Dr. Barbin. “A coronary calcium scan is a low dose CT of the heart. It is quick – takes about five minutes – and relatively affordable.”
The scan can show evidence of calcified plaque. It can help identify possible coronary disease before symptoms present – early enough to treat risk factors and, hopefully, reduce the risk of a heart event.
For someone with high cholesterol, for example, the CAC may help a provider and patient in determining the right course of treatment. If there is no or low plaque present, diet and exercise may be enough to manage cholesterol. If plaque numbers are elevated, the patient may need medication.
“Statins have been the biggest game changer in the steady decline of heart disease,” said Dr. Barbin. “The vast majority of patients do overwhelmingly well on them.”
Statins lower cholesterol by blocking a substance the body needs to make
cholesterol. They also work as an antiinflammatory stabilizing plaque in the arteries and preventing rupture. According to Dr. Barbin, that stabilizing factor is the most important benefit to a statin. When a rupture occurs, it causes a heart attack or stroke.
Dr. Barbin encourages women to reach out to their physician if they are concerned or are exhibiting any risk factors or symptoms of heart disease, especially women with ethnic or socioeconomic barriers who may be unable to address those risk factors.
“Some of our women patients are the toughest patients we have,” he said. “It’s important to recognize, not overlook, when you feel something is wrong or are experiencing new symptoms. Reach out to your doctor. It’s important.”
Dr. Barbin is a board-certified cardiologist specializing in adult preventative, general and interventional cardiology. He graduated with a B.A. in Biology and Political Science at Southern Methodist University and received his Doctor of Medicine from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. He completed his Internal Medicine residency, Cardiovascular Disease and Interventional Cardiology fellowships at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas. Dr. Barbin is proficient in preventing, diagnosing, and treating diseases of the heart and vascular system. Specialists from Waco Cardiology Associates see patients at the Family Practice Rural Health Clinic in Hamilton.
It’s important to recognize, not overlook, when you feel something is wrong
omen’s bodies are as everchanging, complex and beautiful as the minds, hearts and spirits they contain. Led by knowledgeable, compassionate providers and staff, Hamilton Healthcare System offers numerous services to keep those bodies, hearts and minds healthy at any stage.
Prevention and Screenings
“Prevention is most important,” says Dr. Kristen Stegemoller. “Get your mammogram, cervical cancer screening and colon screenings. As we age, we add screening and prevention of osteoporosis. These all happen at wellness visits. That’s why it is so important to have regular wellness checks.”
Well-woman checks should occur every three years for women younger than 49 and annually for those 50 and above.
“Women have a hard time taking time for themselves and finding time to go to the doctor, but it is important,” says Dr. Robbye Lengefeld.
Mammograms are recommended annually beginning at age 40.
“They should continue until life expectancy is less than 10 years,” says Dr. Lengefeld. “We have lots of active
80-year-olds still having mammograms.”
Hamilton General Hospital offers 3D digital mammography for prevention as well as diagnostic mammograms and ultrasounds.
Cervical cancer screening, or pap smears, are recommended every five years beginning no earlier than age 21, says Lengefeld, adding that testing may need to be more frequent depending on abnormal results or the presence of the humanpapilloma virus.
Colon cancer screening should begin at age 45 and usually continues through age 65.
Colonoscopies are the gold standard of screening and can be performed at HGH.
“You should have a discussion with your provider before you quit having any screenings,” says Kayla Routh, FNP.
Young Women's Health
Most young women start having periods between 10 and 15 years old. The average age is 12, but every young woman is different.
“It is very common for the first year or so to be irregular,” says Jacque Wellborn, FNP. “That is nothing to be anxious about.
“I encourage parents to have conversations with their kids.”
Wellborn says that while conversations about their bodies might be awkward for both sides, it is important that kids have someone they can trust to turn to with questions.
“Shut off social media,” she says. “They can’t ever get away from it and what is presented is not always real.”
For older teens, birth control is not only a family planning tool but a way to manage mood swings and regulate flow.
Wellborn says Hamilton Healthcare System providers have numerous options at their fingertips including Nuvaring, injectables, oral and patches.
“We are seeing lots of teens with depression and anxiety,” she says. “They are not sleeping, withdrawing from friends and avoiding events they used to enjoy. They can’t shut their minds off and are constantly worrying or dwelling on problems. They shouldn’t have to feel that way.”
Treatment options may include medication and counseling.
While mammograms are not recommended until age 40, self-breast exams are an excellent prevention tool for young women. Wellborn suggests shower cards to remind women when and how to examine themselves.
HPV vaccine is recommended for young women and men at 11 or 12 years of age. There are 13 common types of HPV, which is responsible for 70 percent of all cervical cancers and 90 percent of anal, vulvar, vaginal and penile cancers.
According to Dr. Lengefeld, menopause usually occurs between 45 and 55 years of age. The average age when women stop having periods is 51.
“Menopause is one day in a woman’s life,” says Kayla Routh, FNP. “It is the last day after a woman has been 12 months without a period.”
The transition to menopause is called perimenopause and lasts an average of four years. However, according to the North American Menopause Society, it can last as long as eight years.
Even women who have had a hysterectomy but still have ovaries will transition through menopause.
As the ovaries stop producing eggs, estrogen levels reduce, and periods become irregular. They may occur more or less frequently. Bleeding may last fewer days or become heavier. Spotting between periods may occur, and skipping periods is common.
A change in periods is not the only symptom of perimenopause. While some women may not experience many symptoms, others experience bothersome, life-interfering symptoms including hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, anxiety, heart palpitations, brain fog, depression, forgetfulness, mood swings, thinning hair, thickening facial hair, vaginal dryness and decreased libido.
“A lot of women feel like they have to suffer through; like it’s just a part of life that they have to deal with it,” says Routh, who is passionate about empowering women to speak up when it comes to the changes happening in their bodies.
Vasomotor symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats are some of the most common experienced symptoms of perimenopause.
“Eighty percent of women experience hot flashes,” says Dr. Lengefeld. “They can be totally disruptive, especially at night.”
Hot flashes usually occur suddenly with heat starting in the face and upper chest and spreading through the body. They usually last two to four minutes but may occur several times a day. Anxiety and heart palpitations may accompany hot flashes. According to NAMS, most women report hot flashes lasting for six months to two years; however, some report themNina Hooper Radiology
Thanks to the generosity of the Hamilton General Hospital Healthcare Foundation and its donors, HGH now offers 3D digital mammography. A mammogram is a non-invasive scan of the breasts to check for cancer and other abnormalities. 3D mammography offers improved accuracy through a clearer, more detailed image than its older 2D predecessors, allowing for better detection, earlier diagnosis and reduced callbacks. HGH performs preventative as well as diagnostic mammograms and ultrasounds. Through Moncrief Cancer Institute, uninsured and underinsured patients may qualify for free mammograms performed at HGH.
DEXA ScanKayla Routh, FNP FPC Mills County
DEXA is a bone density scan commonly used in diagnosing osteoporosis, a bone disease that causes weakened or brittle bones. Women post-menopause are most often at risk for osteoporosis. DEXA is an important tool in determining a patient’s risk for developing fractures. It is simple, quick and non-invasive. “I’ve had patients comment on how comfortable the wedge is during the scan,” said technician Nina Hooper. DEXA scans are most often taken of the low back and hips.
lasting as long as 10 years after menopause.
Hot flashes that occur during sleep are called night sweats. Because they disrupt the sleep cycle, night sweats can create problems like chronic fatigue, irritability, trouble concentrating and mood swings. This can be especially troubling when combined with insomnia, trouble falling asleep or staying asleep.
“We have lots of treatments that can help with this,” says Dr. Lengefeld.
Depression and anxiety can come and go with fluctuating hormones.
Depression during menopause may look like sadness, feeling down, being uninterested in normal activities, sleeping too much, irritability, hopelessness, fatigue, poor appetite or trouble concentrating.
Anxiety screening looks at your level of nervousness, anxiousness, trouble relaxing, irritability and worries.
When it comes to anxiety and depression, perimenopause may add to an already burgeoning workload, home life, raising children and sleep problems.
Depression and anxiety associated with changing hormones may not be permanent, says Dr. Lengefeld; therefore treatments don’t have to be permanent either, but can be very beneficial in assisting women through the experience.
“We have lots of ways to help,” says Dr. Lengefeld. “Treatment can improve your quality of life and make the way you deal
with others much better.”
“Lots of research supports treating with hormones,” says Routh. “Low dose hormones may improve quality of life and symptoms attributed to perimenopause.”
Treatment depends on each individual situation, and hormones are just one option of many.
“Sometimes diet and exercise, magnesium and fiber are enough to help regulate hormones,” says Routh.
“There is an antidepressant that has been shown to be effective not only with depression but also with hot flashes,” says Dr. Lengefeld.
“Yes, this is part of the aging process, but it doesn’t mean you have to suffer through it,” says Routh. “For women to think they have to suffer is unacceptable.”
Lab testing is not needed to determine if a woman is going through menopause.
“If you are having symptoms, talk to your doctor,” says Dr. Lengefeld.
She also stresses continued well-woman checks through this stage as cardiovascular and osteoporosis risks increase during perimenopause.
If bleeding occurs after menopause, 12 months with no period, a doctor should be consulted.
“Vaginal bleeding after menopause is not normal,” says Dr. Lengefeld. “You need to come see us.”
Bone and cardiovascular health become extremely important post-menopause.
Since estrogen helps to prevent bone loss, menopause speeds up bone loss, increasing the risk of osteoporosis. According to the Endocrine Society, one in two postmenopausal women will have osteoporosis.
HGH offers DEXA screening for diagnosis of osteoporosis and determining a woman’s risk for fractures.
“Exercise can really improve bone health,” says Dr. Lengefeld, adding that it helps with mood swings and sleep, too.
She recommends weight training and yoga to strengthen bones, regain and maintain muscle mass and assist in balance and flexibility, all of which can be negatively impacted by a loss of estrogen.
Several immunizations are recommended for aging adults. Shingles vaccinations are recommended for adults over age 50. The flu shot is recommended for everyone annually. Depending on risk factors, pneumonia vaccinations should begin for those without risk factors at age 65.
Screenings for common conditions that can accompany aging like cognition, dementia and depression generally occur during regular wellness checks.
Our state-of-the-art prescription compounding facilities, experience in veterinary compounding, and warmly holistic approach truly set us apart. At McMahan Pharmacy Services, Inc., our reputation has been built by using the purest pharmaceuticals combined with the latest technology. Our dedication to providing customers with continued excellence is inherent in our service and preparations.
CHRONIC CARE MANAGEMENT
Chronic Care Management is care coordination for patients with two or more chronic medical conditions. Chronic Care Management helps the patient reach better health outcomes and quality of life. By focusing on your chronic care conditions more often, you decrease the risk of trips to the emergency room, hospital, and declining health status.
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Central Texas Eye Care Your
Health MattersBY KYMBIRLEE JESCHKE
etting the right amount of sleep is essential for physical, mental and emotional health. It is not just the amount of sleep but the quality of sleep that counts. Good quality sleep occurs when the sleep stages can cycle several times uninterrupted throughout the night.
Women often report poorer sleep quality and have a higher risk of insomnia than men.
According to the Sleep Foundation, women are 40 percent more likely to have insomnia than men. This may begin as early as puberty. Hormones seem to be a primary factor. Depression and anxiety are also closely connected with insomnia and with hormonal changes.
According to the National Institutes of Health, the menstrual cycle not only regulates reproduction but also influences sleep and circadian rhythms. Sleep disturbances are commonly reported in menstruating women, during pregnancy and postpartum. Insomnia is among one of the most common complaints of perimenopausal women.
People who suffer from insomnia often have difficulty falling or staying asleep. However, insomnia is not the only sleep disorder women often experience.
Chronic pain associated with migraines, tension headaches, heartburn, arthritis and fibromyalgia may lead to difficulty sleeping.
According to the NIH, women are significantly more likely to experience nocturnal sleep-related eating disorder, a condition where people eat while asleep and have no recollection of the activity upon waking.
Women are twice as likely as men to have restless legs syndrome, according to the SF. Restless legs syndrome causes uncomfortable sensations that result in the uncontrollable urge to move the legs. Symptoms occur when lying down and impede sleep.
Shift workers working night shift often get less restful sleep than their daytime counterparts. According to the SF, one study found female night shift workers had a significantly greater risk of developing breast cancer and cardiovascular disease.
Sleep apnea, characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep that cause snoring, choking and gasping sounds, negatively impacts sleep quality. While it is more common in men, increased risks are found in women who are overweight or after age 50.
Not only can inadequate sleep cause daytime sleepiness, which affects energy levels, performance and mood, but it can impair memory, decrease immune response and negatively impact metabolism. Inadequate sleep has also been associated with an increased risk of diabetes, hypertension, stroke, cardiovascular disease, obesity, depression and mortality.
Tips for better sleep include avoiding naps during the day, limiting caffeine, alcohol and nicotine, engaging in regular
Women and Sleep
exercise and following a consistent sleep schedule.
“The best thing to do is get evaluated,” said David Rodriguez, Sleep Lab Coordinator at Hamilton Healthcare System. “Tell your doctor if you are not able to sleep well. It is estimated that two of every 10 people have some form of sleep disorder. Talk to your doctor.”
Doctors have treatment options to improve sleep quality. If an underlying condition is responsible for sleep interruption, medication, therapy or lifestyle changes might be prescribed for better sleep. For example, low level hormones may eliminate night sweats, among other perimenopausal symptoms, reducing sleep interruption and improving sleep quality.
A sleep test might detect sleep apnea, which can be treated with a CPAP to keep the airway open while sleeping, improving sleep quality and overall health.
The best way to know you are getting enough quality rest is whether you feel refreshed and restored after waking. If not, talk to your doctor to find the best solution to help you get the rest you need.
David Rodriguez attended Creighton University School of Allied Health Professions Respiratory Therapist Program and is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin. With more than 30 years' experience in healthcare, he has held numerous positions in cardiopulmonary, respiratory care, sleep centers and cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation.
1.ShoulderPressHoldweightsshoulderheightwith elbowsbentabout90degreesand palmsfacingout.Pressarmsoverhead andslowlybringthemback.
Trythislightweight,highrepetitionwork-outtogetsleek, tonedarmsfor spring.Wantmore?
Want personal training?
Fay Morris is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer at Hamilton Wellness Center. Call 254-386-1670 to start today!
Start with1to and perform15to Consultaphysicianbeforestartinganynew
3 Kickbackwithcoreengageddegreeshugging weightsbacktoward tostart.
3.LawnmowerRow Startinastaggeredstancewiththeleft footbackandleftarmstraight.Pullthe weightuptowardthelefthipasthe elbowbends.Returntostart.Finishreps andrepeatontherightside.
4.BicepCurlHoldweightsalongsidethebody,palms facingforward.Alternatearmsasyou pulltheweighttowardyourshoulder, bendingtheelbow.Releasewithcontrol.
6.FrontRaiseHoldweightswithpalmsfacingthefrontofthebody. Extendthearmsshoulder heighttothefrontand releasedown.
5.ShoulderRaise Holdweightswithpalmsfacingthesidesofthebody. Extendthearmsouttothesidetoshoulderheightand releasedown.
7.WallKneeRaises Facingawallonyourknees,tuck aweightbehindtherightkneeand bringthekneetowardthewall, thenreleasebackdown.Finish reps,thenrepeatontheleftside.
8.LegRaiseSittallwithhandsbehindthehips,feet mat-widthapartandweightbetween thefeet.Raiseleftlegandtapittothe rightsideoftheweight,thenbringit back.Alternatewiththerightleg.
My path to
y name is Melodee O’Neal and I am 53 years old. It’s always been a dream of mine to complete an Ironman. After many years of self destructive behavior struggling with alcohol and food, I was finally able to overcome my addictions in 2021. By God’s grace and a loving husband, we conquered it together.
Living without alcohol brought me a new sense of confidence and a belief in myself that I never had!
I started working out with Ray Sneed at Elevate Fitness, lost 40 pounds, became active in Stephenville Running Club and signed up for Ironman Waco 70.3.
A 70.3 is a half Ironman comprised of a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike and 13.1-mile run.
I trained for about 11 months.
Part of that training included taking swimming lessons from Codie Brooks at the Hamilton Wellness Center. She taught me proper swim strokes and also taught me that I learned quickly. I took six weeks of lessons and found out I’m not that bad at swimming!
I also totally surprised my husband by becoming a morning person!
You need a good bike for an Ironman. I bought a bike, found a coach and a training partner.
Our training consisted of about 11 hours a week. It was getting up before work to swim or run. I worked out three days a week on my lunch hour and then completed a long run and ride on the weekends.
It was important to me to make sure my training did not interfere with my home life. My husband and I also care for my 90-year-old mom in our home.
Last year, I completed one sprint triathlon, two Olympic distances and then finished strong on my half Ironman. I fell in love with the sport.
This year, I will be doing the Chattanooga challenge which consists of a half Ironman distance in May then my first full Ironman consisting of 2.4-mile swim, 116-mile bike and 26.2-run in September!
Normally, an Ironman has a 112-mile bike ride, but Chattanooga has a longer bike ride.
Enjoy these local races...
Hamilton Fly-In 5K and 10K
Enjoy food trucks,vendors and a cross country 5K and 10K race at Hamilton's Municial Airport on May 6. Proceeds go to Hamilton Soaring Club. Register at hamiltontexas.com by April 29 to recieve a t-shirt and gift bag.
On May 20, 1,500 bicycle riders will descend on Hico for a gravel road race. Riders can choose to race 30, 60, 100 or 150 mile routes. The charity of choice is Hico Volunteer Fire Department Registration and information is available at www.gravellocos.bike.
Larry Don's 7 & 7K
The friends of Larry Don Troutt decided there was no better way to honor his memory at the Gustine Homecoming than put on a race. Enjoy the 7K, FunRun or Sleep-In on May 27 alongside a 42 tournament, bake off, cake and pie auction, parade and rodeo. Register at runraceday.com
Stay Financially Fit!
roup therapy is said to have many unique benefits, which sets this treatment modality apart from traditional individual therapy.
Some of these benefits include reducing social isolation, providing a sense of support and camaraderie and the opportunity to experience validation and develop selfawareness from listening to the experiences of others.
Solutions Behavioral Health, formerly known as Special Care Clinic, has been offering group therapy for older adults since 1994.
“The group Intensive Outpatient Program at Solutions has been a wonderful asset to our community for many years. It offers a great way for people to understand that they are not alone during difficult times. Through connecting with others and developing new coping skills, the group IOP offers numerous benefits to our patients,” says Elizabeth Bays, Director at Solutions.
The group IOP for older adults provides psychoeducation and psychotherapy that is rooted in evidence-based practices covering various topics in a supportive and empowering environment.
Some broad topics addressed in the group are emotional management techniques, interpersonal and social skill-building, life transition and aging-specific issues, preventative health and wellness strategies and coping skills for managing symptoms related to a variety of life situations and mental health diagnoses.
Currently, group therapy is offered two days per week at Solutions, with one day designated specifically for women.
If you are interested in exploring the opportunity to engage in group therapy, please contact the clinic for additional information or to schedule an evaluation for group therapy services.
“Aging is not lost youth but a new stage of opportunity and strength.”
Group Intensive Outpatient Program provides:
• emotional management techniques
• interpersonal and social skill-building
• life transition and aging-specific issues
• preventative health and wellness strategies
• coping skills for managing symptoms related to a variety of life situations and mental health diagnoses
Brittany Nichols is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 12 years’ experience in this field. She received her Bachelor of Social Work from the University of North Texas, and her Master of Social Work from Texas A&M University-Commerce. She joined the Solutions Behavioral Health team in November 2021 and currently conducts group and individual therapy at the clinic. She is passionate about helping others know their worth and learn to lead happy and fulfilling lives.
Different coping skills work for different people. Consider encouraging children to try some of the following options:
• Start a journal
• Encourage artistic expression
• Identify a comfort object
• Listen to music
• Read a book
• Watch a funny movie
• Find an outlet for aggression such as kickboxing or other forms of physical exertion
• Get in touch with nature
• Practice positive affirmations and self-talk
arenting is tough! It is impossible to have all of the right answers or make all of the right decisions. All you can do is do the best you can each day. Helping your child navigate childhood anxiety can be one of the most challenging tasks you are faced with.
Anxiety can be defined as fear characterized by behavioral disturbances. It is very common, but should not be brushed aside or discarded as “normal.”
Anxiety in children can sometimes be easy to miss. It may look like shyness or disobedience. It may look like illness or apathy. It may take on many characteristics, and parents may feel the need to meet it with discipline when what is really needed is communication.
According to Harvard Health, the three most common types of anxiety in children are Separation Anxiety, Social Anxiety and Specific Phobias.
The old school style of parenting with the belief that children should be seen and not heard is rarely appropriate or successful in the world we live in today. We are raising children in a world where active shooter drills have been added into the public school rotation of safety drills along with tornado and fire drills. Without close supervision, the world literally has access to our kids 24/7 through electronic devices.
Children today often view the world through a lens of anxiety. It can start at a young age, and without an appropriate outlet to process and understand what they are feeling, kids may suffer silently while their anxiety continues to grow and swell within them. They are often not even aware
that their behaviors are being driven by their unprocessed anxiety.
Communication with your children is crucial and should start from day one. The topics and discussions can sometimes be uncomfortable.
Pitch and tone of voice are important when communicating with your child. Words can be powerful so it is best to avoid communicating when you are angry. Your facial expressions, eye contact, hand gestures and personal space speak volumes to your child, as does physical touch.
Children often feel heard and understood when you are demonstrating active listening. Affirming nods and encouraging smiles can show that you are engaged in the conversation and hear what your child is saying. Getting on the same eye level as your child can often make them feel more connected.
Older generations may remember being told “quit crying or I’ll give you something to cry about.” The fact is that if a child -- or anyone of any age -- is feeling something, it should be okay to express it and not be made to feel like it is “wrong.” Don’t get me wrong, I’m a firm believer that children need discipline and guidance, but they also need to feel that they can speak freely within their own homes about what they are feeling in order to process and gain coping skills necessary to move forward in a productive manner.
If our kids do not learn about drugs, sex and the dangers of the world from us, they will learn them from their peers or social media. If we want them to have the facts, we need to make sure they know we, as their trusted adults, are there for them and no topic is off limits. Obviously, some questions will be difficult to answer. Some questions will not have a “right answer,” but at least the information can be processed and an emotional safety zone can be established.
Teaching coping skills is as important as teaching respect and social
What it looks
and how you can help your child
You cannot shield your children from all anxiety. It is human nature to feel degrees of stress and situational anxiety. You may not understand what they are feeling, and you may not always feel that you have the words to offer them peace, but just knowing that you are always there to discuss and navigate any topic will be a great source of comfort for them as well as an avenue for them to learn about their world and discover how to appropriately cope.
Teaching children to cope with their feelings in a healthy and productive manner is important for their social and emotional growth. These coping skills will likely be carried into adulthood.
Teaching coping skills is as important as teaching respect and social etiquette. Teaching them to be good people and to have respect for others will likely help them to have self-respect as well.
Teaching children coping skills and how to face their fears and not run away from their problems while maintaining their core principles is a gift that you can give them that will help ensure they are better prepared for the world and will become more welladjusted adults later.
Never be afraid or ashamed to seek professional advice if you feel your child is experiencing anxiety. There is no shame in asking for help.
Cathy Kolodziej received her Masters degree in counseling from Tarleton State University in 2011. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor at Hamilton ISD. Cathy is passionate about helping others discover their inner strength in order to achieve a better quality of life.
Infusion Services include:
• IV infusions
services Skip the
• IV Antibiotics
• Port/PICC line care
• Blood Transfusions
• Therapeutic Phlebotomies
• IV Fluids
• Knee Injections
• Rocephin/Vancomycin/ Invanz *Rabies Vaccines
IV treatments and injections close to home through theBY KYMBIRLEE JESCHKE
ong-term or chronic illnesses can be demanding. Daily drives into Waco or Austin for IV treatments or injections are not only time consuming but can be exhausting and costly.
The Infusion Services Department at Hamilton General Hospital can eliminate those trips, saving patients precious time and allowing healing close to home.
“We are the in-between,” said Shelly Lilljedahl, RN. “We are here when you are too sick for the clinic but not enough for an overnight stay in the hospital.”
Patients receive individualized one-onone care at Infusion Services. They have a designated nurse in a designated room. The program is monitored by a doctor.
“Everyone does better when they feel comfortable and at home,” said Lilljedahl.
A nurse for 23 years and mother of four, Lilljedahl has worked in med-surg, emergency medicine, labor and delivery, surgery, a gastrointestinal clinic and pediatrics at McClain’s Children’s Hospital. She says her experiences
have made her well-rounded to better help her patients.
Through Infusion Services, Lilljedahl has administered treatments for patients with bad wounds, infections, chronic anemia, Crohn’s, IBS, low bone density, complications from chemotherapy and other chronic illnesses.
“Sometimes pregnant women have low iron and can’t tolerate pills,” she said. They are candidates for Infusion Services where the much-needed nutrient can be administered through IV, and they can be closely monitored through the procedure.
Patients of all ages can benefit from Infusion Services. Many adolescents requiring rabies vaccinations due to dog bites receive their followup treatments through the department. During treatment, Lilljedahl makes the patient as comfortable as possible.
The Hamilton General Hospital Healthcare Foundation donated over-sized recliners and monitors for the department so patients can receive quality care in a comfortable setting. While the plush chairs are easy to snuggle
Infusion Services Department
into for longer infusions, they are medical grade with the ability to lift and recline into Trendelenburg position in the event of an emergency.
“The monitors have the same function as those in our special care unit,” said Lilljedahl. “ER physicians are on hand, if complications arise.”
While most treatments are quick, lasting less than an hour, some treatments take four to six hours to administer. For those patients, HGH rolls out the redcarpet offering television, warm blankets and even a tasty meal from their cafeteria, widely known to have one of the best burgers in town.
“Some of my patients take a nap while others like to chit chat,” said Lilljedahl.
She says the department’s success is a team effort. The business office, hospital pharmacy and other departments work together to get insurance approval, obtain medicine and work with specialists so that patients can receive these vital treatments conveniently.
“If you are wondering if we can do it, give us a call,” she said. “Just because we haven’t done it here, doesn’t mean we can’t.”
Home care can benefit a wide variety of seniors aging in place. Whether your aging loved one needs more social interaction to reduce loneliness or requires more specialized assistance, we can help. Companion In-Home Senior Care offers varied levels of care to help your loved one stay home. Our caregivers are screened, bonded and thoroughly trained.
Family Practice Clinic of Mills County
uman papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 36,500 men and women are diagnosed with HPV each year.
HPV can cause skin warts, genital warts, cervical, vulvar, vaginal, anal, oropharyngeal and other head and neck cancers. The HPV vaccine could prevent more than 90 percent of cancers caused by HPV.
The CDC recommends HPV vaccination for boys and girls 11 or 12 years of age before youth are sexually active and exposed to HPV. Vaccination can be started at age 9 and is recommended through age 45. Two doses are needed for children younger than15. Older youth and adults require three doses.
Hamilton Healthcare System vaccinates with Gardasil 9 to protect against HPV types 6 and 11, which cause 90 percent of visible genital warts, types 16 and 18, which cause about 70 percent of cervical cancers and 90 percent of anal cancers, and types 31, 33, 45, 52 and 58, which together cause 10 to 20 percent of cervical cancers.
A good time to get an HPV vaccine is during a yearly wellness check. Most insurances cover routine vaccinations like HPV.
When you’re treated at Texas Oncology, you’re getting leading edge cancer care right here in Waco. Our skilled physicians fight cancer with breakthrough clinical trials and the latest treatment innovations — so Texans everywhere can receive recognized cancer care in their own community.Carl G. Chakmakjian, D.O., FACP • Tyler W. Snedden, M.D. • Thomas J. Harris, M.D. • Rachel Ramsey, NP, AOCNP Carlos A. Encarnación, M.D., FACP • Ofobuike N. Okani, M.D., FACP • Katie Bone, MSN, APRN, FNP-BC Dawn Turner, RN, FNP-C, AOCNP • Justin W. Wray, M.D., Ph.D.
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ABUSE & NEGLECT HOTLINE
Swing Bed Services at Hamilton General Hospital
Do you need care close to home after a hospitalization? We’ve got you covered. Hamilton General Hospital offers 24-hour skilled nursing and rehabilitation to recover and treat a wide range of conditions.
• Physical Therapy, 5 days per week
• Occupational and speech therapy
• Regular Physician visits weekly
• RN staffing
• Low nurse to patient ratio
• Respiratory therapist available 24/7
• Emergency Department on site
• IV medication therapy, TPN
• Specialized wound care with dedicated wound physician and certified wound care nurses
• Clean Private Rooms & Bathrooms
• Room Service and gourmet dietary choices
• Reduce relapse/readmit to hospital
• Covered by Medicare and most insurances