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2017 Edition

Brought to you by

Heart Care • Weight Loss • Oncology • Clinic History

DOC+FINDER 870.936.NEAB (6322) Family Medicine - Jonesboro Hilltop Clinic 870-936-7694 Jeffery Barber, DO, MRO Tim Shown, DO Crystal Adams, APRN

Stadium Clinic 870-936-7669 Michael E. Crawley, MD Arnold E. Gilliam, MD Michael E. Tedder, MD

Windover Clinic 870-935-5432 Nicole Akers, MD Douglas L. Maglothin, MD Joe McGrath, MD Noma Moyo, DO Angie Jones, APRN Tiffany Woodard, APRN Woodsprings Clinic 870-936-7612 Randy Carlton, MD W. Scott Hoke, MD Brannon Treece, MD Nathan Turney, MD Jon Carter, APRN Stephanie Wiggins, APRN Brookland Clinic 870-932-1211 Meghan Lyerly, MD Shane Lyerly, MD Sandra Stubblefield, MD

Cherokee Village Clinic 870-856-2862 Tommy Taylor, MD

Newport Clinic 870 -936-7600

Matthew Haustein, MD (Cardiology) Matthew P. Jackson, MD Roddy S. Lochala, DO

Osceola Clinic 870-936-7642

Adam Woodruff, MD (Nephrology) Nephertiti Efeovbokhan, MD (Cardiology) JImmy Ballard, APRN

Paragould Clinic 870-936-7652

Chris McGrath, MD Leslye McGrath, MD Aaryn Spurlock, APRN Garrett Wray, APRN

Trumann Clinic 870-483-6131 Ronald Barnett, MD Andrew Walters, MD Chris Rowlett, DPM (Podiatry) Michelle Montgomery, APRN


Medical Campus, 870-936-1000 Michael Adams, MD David Daniel, MD Oksana Redko, MD Stacy Richardson, DO Erick Schuermann, DO


Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Nephertiti Efeovbokhan, MD Matthew Haustein, MD Michael L. Isaacson, MD, FACC D.V. Patel, MD, FACC Eumar T. Tagupa, MD Robert D. Taylor, MD, FACP Anthony T. White, MD Margaret Cooper, APRN Teri Horne, APRN  Brooke Pruitt, APRN Jennifer Smith, APRN Brennan Weeks, APRN Kirk Williamson, APRN

Cardiovascular & Thoracic Surgery Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Ahmed Halal, MD Paul Levy, MD Deborah Fairchild, APRN

Fowler Family Center for Cancer Care Medical Campus, 870-936-7000 Gynecologic Oncology Sanjeev Kumar, MD Hematology/Oncology Scott Dorroh, MD D. Allen Nixon, Jr., MD Carroll D. Scroggin, Jr., MD Stacia Gallion, APRN Oncology Clinical Research Radiation Oncology Kevin Collins, MD

Open Late Mon - Fri

Medical Campus, 870-936-1000 Rodney Clark, Jr., MD Jeffrey Guirand, MD Brock Harris, MD Jonathan Holt, MD Adrian Jefferson, MD Matt Quick, MD Robert B. White, MD, FACP Kelly Rogers, APRN

Infectious Disease

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Steven Stroud, MD

Internal Medicine

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Ray H. Hall, Jr., MD, FACP Dhivya Sugumar, MD Stephen O. Woodruff, MD, FACP Joy Escue, APRN Ashley House, APRN Carla Nix, PA

Internal Medicine/Pediatrics

Trumann - 305 W. Main 870-483-6131 Ronald Barnett, MD Andrew Walters, MD

Medical Spa

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Paula Inboden, RN, CLT


Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Michael G. Mackey, MD Adam B. Woodruff, MD Sara Culbreath, APRN Tracy Mullis,APRN Dialysis Centers

3005 Middlefield, 870-936-7931 4909 E. Johnson, 870-936-7918

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Owen K. Criner, MD William Hubbard, MD Meredith Walker, MD



Clinical Research 870-934-5210 Critical Care Intensivist

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Johnathan J. Ledet, MD, FAAD Meredith Brewer, PA-C


Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Kevin D. Ganong, MD Valari Landrum, APRN Diabetes Center

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Amber Toombs, APRN

Eye Center

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 James Cullins, OD Ellen Lawrence, OD


Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Michael D. Hightower, MD

General Surgery

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Russell D. Degges, MD Wesley Hurston Jr., MD K. Bruce Jones, MD David L Phillips, MD

Otolaryngology (ENT)

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Bryan Lansford, MD Jeffrey Myhill, MD Heidi Cohn, APRN Hearing Center Amy Stein, AuD, CCC­A


1150 E. Matthews Suite 101, 870-936-7937 MaryJoanne Umeora, MD Richard Reinhard, III, MD Tomorrow Potter, APRN

Physical Therapy

Jonesboro - Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Ken Miller, PT Cindy Norman, OT Ivan Spengler, PT 1007 Windover, 870-336-1530 Leif Lovins, PT Nikki Luster, PT Jeff Ramsey, PT Paragould - 4700 W. Kingshighway, 870-936-7654 Christopher Enger, PT Duston Jones, PT Trumann - 305 W. Main, 870-483-6131 Wayne Traylor, PT

Physical Medicine/Rehab

Medical Campus - Inpatient Rehab, 870-936-1000 Homer Brooks, MD Tim Shown, DO Mira Zelin, DO Teresa Clark, APRN


Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Chris Rowlett, DPM



Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Bing Behrens, MD Kenneth Chan, DO William Long, MD, PhD Candice Harris, APRN Rendi Kahoun, APRN Ashley Ward, APRN

Open 7 days a week No Appointment Needed WINDOVER STADIUM 1111 Windover 3003 Apache Dr. 870-935-9585 870-931-8800 WOODSPRINGS HILLTOP 4901 E. Johnson 2205 W. Parker Rd. 870-936-7615 870-936-7695 PARAGOULD 4700 W. Kingshighway 870-936-7653


Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Robert Abraham, MD Rebecca Barrett-Tuck, MD Kelsey Schmidt, APRN Carie Wells, APRN

Obstetrics & Gynecology

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Charles Cesare, Jr., MD Jason Coletta, DO Norbert Delacey, MD, FACOG Charles C. Dunn, MD, FACOG Lorna Layton, MD, FACOG Mark C. Stripling, MD, FACOG   

Occupational Medicine

4901 E. Johnson, 870-910-6024 Jeffery Barber, DO, MRO

Orthopedic Surgery

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Jason Brandt, MD Edward Cooper, MD Ron Schechter, MD Aaron Wallace, MD Scott Griffith, PA Harold Parsons, APRN

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Owen K. Criner, MD William Hubbard, MD Meredith Walker, MD Sam Hiser, APRN


Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Gregory Lewis, MD

Senior Care

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Homer Brooks, MD

Center for Sleep Disorders 1118 Windover, 870-936-7686 Srirangarajan Raju, MD Bing Behrens, MD William Long, MD, PhD


Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 John Allen, MD Michael Suminski, MD

Wellness Center

2617 Phillips, 870-936-7955

Wellness Clinic

Medical Campus, 870-936-8000 Priscilla Fortner, APRN Lyndon Ramirez, APRN

Wound Care

1111 Windover, 870-336-3211 Billie Barnes Willis, APRN

4901 E. Johnson 870-934-3539 1111 Windover 870-910-6040

NEA Baptist Medical Campus 4800 E. Johnson, Jonesboro, AR

NEA Health, established in 2005, is a publication of free health information and articles written by NEA Baptist physicians for our community. As one of the largest multi-specialty groups in the mid-south, NEA Baptist is dedicated to providing compassionate, personalized medical care. We are committed to the well-being of the community. This magazine, along with NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation is part of NEA Baptist’s expanded commitment to the community. It’s through the generous contributions of our donors that help us accomplish our mission. If you would like more information on how you can support NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation, please call Robbie Johnson at (870) 936-8479 or Kim Provost at (501) 283-1170. We would love to have you be a part of helping meet the needs of others in our community.

PUBLICATION OFFICE 4800 E. Johnson, Jonesboro, AR 72401 Danial Reed, Editor Director of Marketing Nicole Frakes, Art Direction and Design

NEA Health is published bi-annually for the purpose of conveying health-related information for the well-being of residents of Northeast Arkansas and Southeast Missouri. The information contained in NEA Health is not intended for the purpose of diagnosing or prescribing. Please consult your physician before undertaking any form of medical treatment and/or adopting any exercise program or dietary guidelines. Editorial, advertising and general business information can be obtained by phoning 870-936-8000 or by writing in care of this publication to: PO Box 1960, Jonesboro, Arkansas 72403. Copyright© 2015 NEA Baptist. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording and any information storage retrieval system, without written permission from NEA Baptist.

from the editor F

orty years ago, Dr. Ray Hall and his early physician partners embarked on a new journey with the opening of NEA Clinic in July 1977. This group of young doctors had a vision for the future of their clinic and the care they provide to our community. They wanted to transform the way health care was delivered in our region, giving residents of Jonesboro and all of our surrounding communities a destination for quality, specialized care close to home. That vision came to fruition and is the integrated healthcare system you see today as NEA Baptist.

I believe that the compassion and dedication that our doctors have for their patients is the driver of the successes they have achieved over the years. Those early doctors are still practicing in their clinics and walking the halls of the hospital today. They are serving in leadership roles for the health system and attending community events every chance they get. You will read articles in this edition about the history of the clinic and how medicine has changed over the years, but the one thing that has not changed is their vision for providing care. We have grown a lot in forty years and have so much to be proud of at NEA Baptist. For example our growing physician team offers primary care and a wide range of specialized care, a team of nearly 2000 dedicated employees who provide compassion and expertise, a new integrated medical campus and an alignment with Baptist Health Care Corporation- one of the largest not for profit health systems in the mid-south region. Our history is a part of this community and it has led us to where we are today. We hope you enjoy reading about it. I also need to bring attention to our patient feature story with Tracy Miles. The moment I heard Tracy speak about her health and experience at NEA Baptist, I knew her story would be perfect for this publication. We enjoy sharing stories about the great care that is provided every day here at NEA Baptist. Tracy would tell anyone firsthand how wonderful the people have been – from the doctors, to the nurses, to the front desk staff. Her story is more than a great experience; it truly brings awareness to health issues for women. Tracy was fatigued. Like many of us, she attributed her fatigue to her busy life and wrote it off. This was the only symptom she experienced from her life-threatening condition. Tracy knows her road to recovery was more than luck – it was a God thing. Read more about Tracy’s story inside. I hope you enjoy this edition. Danial Reed, Editor

1 NEA HEALTH • 2017

CONTENTS 1 Letter from the Editor - Danial Reed

4 Events - Event photos and Event Calendar

5 NEA Baptist Spotlight

6 Meet Our New Doctors

8 Heart Attack? Dial! Don’t Drive!

5 The Early Years

- Ray Hall, Jr., MD, FACP

- Michael Isaacson, MD, FACC

10 It was a God thing - Tracy Miles

14 A Look Back

- Douglas Maglothin, MD

17 Celebrating 40 years of Care 20 Oncology: How Medicine Has Changed - Carroll Scroggin, MD

21 Just Another Running Article - Brian Lewis, PTA

22 Patient Appreciation & Facebook Feedback 22 What Does It Mean To Be A Center of Excellence? - K. Bruce Jones, MD

As part of our celebration of the 40th anniversary of NEA Baptist Clinic, we have chosen local non-profits to honor and celebrate the work they also do in our community. Our first of 12 presentations was to CASA board members with a celebration and donation. Thank you for your important work in our community!

2 NEA HEALTH • 2017

24 Acne Treatment For All Ages - Johnathan J. Ledet, MD

25 NEA Clinic Through the Years - Stephen Woodruff, MD, FACP

26 Meet Abby, Our Service Dog

28 Caring for our Community

- NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation Updates

32 Duck Season is Coming - Kim Provost, Director of Events

Memberships Available! Selectorized Equipment & Free Weights Complete line of cardiovascular training equipment including treadmills, elliptical trainers, bikes & AMT machines; with personal TV’s! Indoor Running Track Heated Swimming Pool & Sauna Executive Locker Rooms Personal Trainers Protein Shakes and Dietary Supplements Group Exercise Classes Hours: Mon - Thurs: 5:00 AM - 9:00 PM Fri: 5:00 AM - 8:00 PM Sat: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM Sun: 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM

2617 Phillips Drive, Jonesboro 870.936.7955

Events H E A L T H


Grief Center Announcement March 1, 2017

Sept. 23 Touch a Truck - A Hope Week Event -

Cancer Survivors Day

Sept. 24–30 Hope Week

Sept. 27 Teal Talk

Sept. 29 Hoping For A Cure

HealthTalk Luncheons

2017 Healthgrades Awards

Sept. 30 ShareHope Walk - A Hope Week Event

Oct. 13 Women’s Day at NEA

Nov. 9 Holiday Grief Seminar

Nov. 19 Christmas Tree Lighting Dec. 6 ShareHope Christmas Candlelight Memorial Service Dec. 7-8 Duck Classic

2017 March of Dimes Banner

Monthly Events

2017 Mother’s Day 5K

Diabetes Support Group - 3rd Thurs. noon, call 870-936-8020 to RSVP

NYIT Progressive Dinner August 2017

Childbirth/Breastfeeding Classes – 2nd Sat., call 870-936-3025 to RSVP Breastfeeding Support Group – 3rd Thurs. 2-3pm Weight Management Class – 3rd Tues. 12-1pm, Conference Room 2 call 870-935-5432 Bariatric Surgery (weight loss) Seminar 4 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Art Slam June 2017

The Early Years: From the Founder


hen I was a senior resident in Internal Medicine at UAMS in 1976, I began evaluating potential practical opportunities in the mid-South. My wife and I were searching for a friendly growing community with quality public schools, cultural offerings, a University, churches, and a medical climate ready for expansion. Having grown up in Jonesboro, Barbara and I never conceived of returning here, however, after living in several communities during residency and military service, Jonesboro deserved another “look.” With a population of about 30,000 and two hospitals (St. Bernard’s and newly opened Craighead Memorial), only three internists and no medical sub-specialties, the possibility of developing an internal medicine clinic featuring general internists at the heart of the practice supported by an array of subspecialists such as nephrology, cardiology, gastroenterology, rheumatology, pulmonology, oncology-hematology and neurology was a vision we felt was realistic. And so, in July


1977, NEA Internal Medicine Clinic began as a solo practice but soon grew to 15 physicians in only 10 years. Close associates in residency at UAMS became the core physicians who embraced the vision and fueled the clinic’s rapid growth. No longer were most patients with complex or critical illnesses transferred to tertiary medical facilities in Memphis, Little Rock, or other metropolitan cities. These highly trained physicians in turn were catalysts to the growth of hospital services, particularly at St. Bernard’s (where our physicians attended patients exclusively until 1994). Examples were open heart surgery, coronary artery ballooning and stenting, pacemakers, cancer chemotherapy and radiation, renal dialysis, gastrointestinal endoscopy, bronchoscopy, and advanced ICU care.


Service First Winners Brian Coleman, RN - 2016 4th Quarter

Over the past four decades many new physicians and innovative services have been added as the clinic and hospital have evolved into multispecialty foundation model fully integrated health care delivery systems.

Spotlight 2017 Daisy Award Awards John Beadles, RN - January

In 2017 Service First Awards are presented in both Clinic and Hospital

Sara Weick, RN - February

1st Quarter Paul Kilvington, PT & Holly Morris CRT

Rickey Daniels, RN - April

2nd Quarter Charlotte Earls, RN & Jessica Womble, RN

In retrospect, none of this would have been possible without the dedicated work of our “early” group of physicians which included Dr. Michael Mackey, the late Dr. Hank Jordan, Dr. Robert Taylor, Dr. Michael Hightower, Dr. Stephen Woodruff, Dr. Anthony White, Dr. Allen Nixon, Dr. Ron Blachly (now retired), Dr. William Hubbard, and Dr. Michael Isaacson. During my professional career, I have been blessed to work alongside these fine physicians. Amazingly nearly all continue to practice as staff physicians at NEA Baptist Clinic and Hospital which in 2016 was the only full service hospital to be awarded both the Quality and Safety award from, a national rating organization.

Amy Sullins, RN - March Molly Blattner, RN - May Ron Montague, RN - June

5 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Meet Our Newest Doctors Michael S. Adams, MD

Residency - University of Arkansas of Medical Sciences Medical Degree - Indiana University School of Medicine Anesthesiology • 870-936-1000

Adrian Jefferson, MD

Residency - University of Tennessee Health Science Center Medical Degree - Howard University College of Medicine Hospitalist • 870-936-1000

Joseph Wesley Hurston Jr., MD

Residency - East Tennessee State University Medical Degree - University of Mississippi Medical Center General Surgery • 870-936-8000

Jonathan A. Holt, MD

Residency - The University of Tennessee Health Science Center Medical Degree - The University of Tennessee Health Science Center, College of Medicine Hospitalist • 870-936-1000

Coming Soon

Nicole Akers, MD

Greg Ricca, MD

Jeffrey Guirand, MD

Camille Chan, MD

Family Medicine, September 2017

Hospitalist, September 2017

Mahesh Aradhya, MD Cardiology, September 2017

6 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Neurosurgery, January 2018

Pediatrics, 2018

Welcome Back Lorna M. Layton, MD, FACOG Residency - State University of New York Health Science Center Medical School - Columbia University Gynecology • 870-936-8000

Now Accepting Patients Schedule an appointment with a primary care provider today at a location near you!

Crystal Adams, APRN

Noma Moyo, DO • Tiffany Woodard, APRN

Stephanie Wiggins, APRN

Hilltop Clinic

Windover Clinic

Woodsprings Clinic

MaryJoanne Umeora, MD • Richard Reinhard, III, MD Tomorrow Potter, APRN Pediatrics

Homer Brooks, MD

Aaryn Spurlock, APRN • Garrett Wray, APRN • Leslye McGrath, MD

Ronald Barnett, MD • Andrew Walters, MD

Senior Care Clinic Medical Campus

Paragould Clinic

Trumann Clinic

Roddy Lochala, DO • Matthew Jackson, MD

Meghan Lyerly, MD • Shane Lyerly, MD

Jimmy Ballard, APRN

Newport Clinic

Brookland Clinic

Osceola Clinic

Dhivya Sugumar, MD Internal Medicine Clinic Medical Campus

DOC+FINDER 870.936.NEAB (6322) 7 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Heart Attack? DIAL! Don’t Drive!


he evolution of care for the patient experiencing a heart attack, or myocardial infarction (MI), has over the past 30 years been literally lifesaving. In the not-so-distant past, patients experiencing a heart attack would typically be placed in an intensive care unit for heart monitoring and medications would be prescribed to try and limit the heart muscle damage.

The fear was that a weakened heart muscle, following the heart attack, would result in subsequent heart failure, thus leaving the patient with limited heart function for the remainder of their life. Medications were also used to treat dangerous irregularities of the heart (arrhythmias) that came as a result of the heart damage. For those patients who survived, a dye study of the coronary arteries and pumping action of the heart (cardiac catheterization) would be performed and if more blockages were found and the heart had not been too injured from the heart attack, coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery would be performed by a cardiovascular surgeon using segments of vein from the leg and/or arteries (ex. internal mammary and radial) to “bypass” these blockages. As science progressed, a new class of medicine was introduced – the statins, such as Mevacor (lovastatin), Zocor(simvastatin), Lipitor (atorvastatin), Pravachol (pravastatin) and Crestor (rosuvastatin). This class of medications became almost “miracle drugs”. Not only did they greatly lower cholesterol and heart attack event rates, stroke rates were reduced as well – a fact attributed to the pleiotropic effect of these medicines, the decreased inflammation (antiinflammatory) and decreased clotting (antithrombotic) effects! Science was also beginning to recognize that heart attacks did not occur as a blockage (plaque) got tighter and tighter and then closed, but rather these blockages in the coronary arteries behaved like “pimples” or “volcanoes”. They might sit for long periods of time dormant and then rupture with oozing of 8 NEA HEALTH • 2017

material that was highly clotty (thrombogenic) resulting in 100% blockage of an artery – “attack of the heart,” a myocardial infarction, i.e. no blood flow to an area of the heart that would then die and scar tissue would then form. Cardiologists began to realize that the most dangerous blockages were not always the tightest. Research studies confirmed that 70% of heart attacks occurred from blockages less than 50% and the concept “vulnerable plaque” was born. Focus then moved to stabilization of the vulnerable plaque in an effort to prevent the popping of the pimple or the eruption of the volcano. The body is designed to react intensely to repair an event such as this. For example, with a cut on the hand, the body’s natural reactive clotting of blood is beneficial. However, if a coronary artery plaque pops, clotting in that area is NOT helpful as it further decreases blood supply to the heart muscle. Drug studies confirmed that aspirin significantly minimizes the body’s reaction to the “pop or eruption”. An 81milligram aspirin each evening is beneficial for those at risk (i.e. known risk factors for heart disease), especially since the highest incidence of heart attacks occur at 6:00 a.m. in the morning, when your body is getting ready for the day. Statins also stabilize and prevent the “pop or the eruption” as well and have been shown to decrease heart attacks and strokes up to 40%! Fortunately, for those who are intolerant to or who genetically do not respond to statins, a new injectable classification of medication called PCSK9 inhibitors (ex. Repatha and Praluent) are now

available. PCSK9 inhibitors reduce cardiac events as well. Heart attack prevention is better than ever, but there is still much left to do! Care of the patient experiencing a heart attack has progressed from the era of hopeful Intensive Care Unit observation to active interruption of the heart attack itself. “Clot busters” (thrombolytics) were very helpful in the care of the MI patient as was the development of the ability to push the plaque against the wall of the artery (balloon angioplasty). The current standard of care involves opening and reinforcing the opening (stenting) of the dangerous ruptured plaque causing the total blockage. Stenting has revolutionized the success rate of opening a blocked coronary artery quickly, thus minimizing heart damage for patients seeking treatment at the onset of symptoms. Protocols across the world and yes, right here in Jonesboro, called “CODE STEMI” (ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction as determined by the EKG tracing), were developed trying to get the patient’s blocked (100%) artery open in less than 90 minutes from presentation to the Emergency Room. Effective patient care teams have been developed to come together to do this 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Area physicians have been very successful working on ways to decrease this time even further. With the help of our great emergency medical teams out in the community, recognition of heart attacks via Emergency Michael Isaacson, MD, FACC Cardiology NEA Baptist Clinic 870.936.8000

Better Care for Your Eyes Our specialists offer comprehensive eye care in the following areas: Treatment for multiple conditions

Medical Services (EMS)/ambulance EKG is faster than ever before with reporting to the CODE STEMI teams, prior to hospital arrival of the patient, thus hastening the response time and opening of the coronary artery even faster. However, the success of these life -saving protocols is dependent on your help. If you or a loved one have symptoms such as shortness of breath, chest pain, chest pressure with radiation to the arm, neck or jaw, profound sweating (particularly if there are significant underlying risks such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, strong family history of heart disease, diabetes or history of smoking) – seek rapid attention from our local emergency medical services (EMS) – call an ambulance! Don’t wait and blame it on heart burn or other less dangerous issues! Remember “time is muscle – your or your loved one’s heart muscle”! “Dial (Call 911)! Don’t Drive”! During heart attacks, dangerous heart irregularities can develop. EMS can protect you from these life -threatening heart beats while in route to the hospital and by rapid diagnosis of the heart attack with a heart tracing (EKG) at home, activate the CODE STEMI protocol to ensure that a heart care team is available and preparing to care for you, saving time and muscle.

• Diabetic Eye Disease • Glaucoma • Macular Degeneration • Eye Pain • Long Term Meds Ocular Evaluation • Removal of Ingrown Eye Lashes • Red, Itchy Eyes • Allergy Eyes • Blurred Vision • Foreign Body • Vision Loss • Visual Disturbance • Evaluation of Drooping Eyelids • Monitoring of Cataracts

Contact Lenses • Fitting of all contact lens designs • Sale of lenses and supplies

Optical Shop • Frames & Lenses to Fit Every Budget • Name Brand Designer Frames • Perscription Sunglasses (including RayBan & Coach)

James D. Cullins, OD • Ellen Lawrence, OD

Eye Center

4802 E. Johnson Dr, Jonesboro, AR 72401 870-936-8000 •

It Was a God Thing


t was a series of seemingly random events that brought Tracy Miles to NEA Baptist but if you talk to her, it all makes sense, it was a God thing.

One week before Thanksgiving 2016, Tracy and her husband, Matt, moved into a new home. It is tradition for the couple of 18 years to host a Thanksgiving meal in their home for their five children and now six grandchildren. They were hard at work to prepare their home for the family and food that would soon occupy the space on Thanksgiving day. One evening soon after the move, Matt was up late hanging pictures around the house and fell off his ladder. Tracy rushed her husband to the Emergency Department at NEA Baptist and while the nurses and staff were busying running tests on Matt’s arm, Tracy started feeling unwell but blamed it on exhaustion from the hectic week and quickly dismissed the unusual feelings. Several moments later, Tracy passed out in the Emergency Department room. The next

10 NEA HEALTH • 2017

thing she remembered was waking up on a hospital bed, hooked up to machines and having tests performed to find out what was going on. Tracy’s husband had a shattered wrist. Following surgery, he was admitted to a room on the fifth floor of the hospital for recovery, while Tracy was also admitted so that she could be monitored on the fourth floor. Once Matt was discharged to go home, Tracy began to feel guilty about leaving her husband home by himself. She told her nurses repeatedly that she needed to go home, she needed to take care of her husband. She still blamed her exhaustion as the trigger for her episode and the tests did not show anything conclusive. The doctors in the hospital were reluctant to discharge Tracy without an answer but were adamant that she follow up with her primary care provider for further testing and monitoring of her health. Tracy did comply and met with her long-time doctor, Dr. Arnold Gilliam at NEA Baptist Clinic - Stadium. Other than slightly elevated blood pressure, Tracy was in perfect health and there were no major red flags in her family history. Dr. Gilliam increased her blood pressure medication and scheduled an appointment with a cardiologist for Tracy. Moving into a new house, helping to care for her four year old grandson and preparing for the upcoming holiday’s had worn Tracy out. She did not think the cardiology appointment was necessary so she called to cancel and ended up rescheduling. She canceled that appointment as well. She started feeling bad again, describing it as “flu-like” symptoms, but mostly she just felt fatigued. She went back to Dr. Gilliam, sure that she had the flu or a cold of some sort. Tracy lovingly described the way Dr. Gilliam “fussed” at her for canceling the cardiology appointments. He felt very strongly that she needed to be checked out so his nurses scheduled a third appointment and kept calling her, adamant that she make it to the appointment.

with me. I’m getting older and I’m just tired.” Dr. Efeovbokhan was very thorough and asked Tracy a series of questions. Although she agreed everything seemed fine - there was no family history and her cholesterol was barely up - Dr. Efeovbokhan just couldn’t let it go and recommended they perform a nuclear stress test to ease her concerns. Tracy became nervous about the test but the empathy and compassion she described of Dr. Efeovbokhan and the nurses helped to ease her concerns. She told us that Dr. Efeovbokhan was able to keep her calm the entire time and assured her it would only last a few minutes. Tracy became sick immediately after the test was over and could not help but to wonder if that was normal. She was told that the she would receive a call with the results in the next 24-48 hours. Tracy had just enough time to drive back to work when her phone started ringing - it was Dr. Efeovbokhan calling with her results. She told Tracy that while she appeared healthy, the stress test results were abnormal – it showed she was not getting adequate blood flow to a large part of the anterior part of her heart. Her plan was to take Tracy into the catheterization (cath) lab to get the answers they had been looking for - best case scenario she would confirm that nothing major was wrong. The other possibilities were that she may need a stent for partial blockage or there was a slight chance she may need bypass surgery. This news was devastating for Tracy and she began to cry. Dr. Efeovbokhan told her, “Don’t worry, I will take care of you.” Not long after that phone call, Tracy came in for the cath lab procedure. She remembers laughing and visiting with the staff beforehand. The heart cath was performed via the radial artery. Being a woman with small arteries, Tracy’s radial artery went into a spasm during the procedure and locked onto the wire that was placed. She was in excruciating pain. This is the last thing Tracy Miles remembers until she woke up in a hospital room six days later.

Dr. Efeovbokhan later showed Tracy and her family the pictures taken during the cath; Tracy had 95% blockage (approximately the thickness of a strand of hair) in the left main artery – also known as the “widow maker”. The term widow maker is used because the used ... left main coronary artery that runs down can easily the front of the heart be overlooked or written off. Women may supplies blood to the experience “atypical” symptoms ... back, jaw, entire left side of the heart muscle. When lower chest or upper belly pain or discomfort, this artery becomes nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, fatigue, blocked, it will cause dizziness or lightheadedness. a massive heart attack that most often will lead

The appointment was scheduled with one of the new cardiologists at NEA Baptist - Dr. Nephertiti Efeovbokhan. Tracy’s fatigue, along with the encouragement of Dr. Gilliam and his office, convinced her to keep the new appointment, The term widow maker is which was scheduled for the last week in January. Symptoms often mundane and Tracy met with Dr. Efeovbokhan, although reluctantly. She described the events of the past couple months and blatantly told her, “there’s nothing wrong


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11 NEA HEALTH • 2017


continued from page 11

to sudden death. Symptoms of the blockage are often mundane and can easily be overlooked or written off. According to the American Heart Association, women may experience “atypical” symptoms including: back, jaw, lower chest or upper belly pain or discomfort, nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, fatigue, dizziness or lightheadedness. If significant blockage is found in this artery, a stent is often used to relieve the blockage. Sometimes bypass surgery is necessary. Tracy was immediately rushed into emergency open heart surgery with Dr. Ahmed Halal, cardiovascular surgeon at NEA Baptist. Dr. Halal found more blockages but everything was going well. As he started to finish, her arteries began to spasm again and he could not do anything. They waited for three hours. Dr. Halal canceled everything and never left her side in the operating room. Tracy was on and off bypass. A surgery that should have taken four hours became a ten hour surgery.

“Everyone from beginning to end were lifesavers. The nurses, my gosh, they were just so great. I never felt alone, I never felt uncomfortable. Surprisingly, I never had the major pain you would expect with open heart surgery,” Tracy shared with us. “They kept my husband and family updated. They never had to ask, they were told everything they needed to know. My family is just so appreciative. My husband was lost. All he could think about was what if something happened to me. He has been singing their praises ever since.”

Dr. Halal canceled everything & never left her side.

Tracy was taken to ICU to be monitored after the surgery and her oxygen levels would not come up. Once again, Dr. Halal stayed by her side. The low oxygen levels had the potential to cause brain damage and he refused to leave while they ran tests. Tracy was receiving full oxygen, but it was not absorbing. Although Tracy was unaware, this was an extremely stressful time for both her caregivers and her family. They were unsure of the outcome. The doctors told the family they would keep Tracy comfortable but that she was very sick. The medical team worked to increase her oxygen levels. Dr. Halal thought to ask his nurse to take Tracy off the nitro. At that moment, her oxygen levels went way back up. He later told Tracy that it was very unusual and he wasn’t even sure why he thought to do that; she replied, “I do, the Lord knew.” Tracy was on the ventilator for the next six days. Her family was prepared for the possibility that her health may not improve. After nearly a week, she was able to come off the ventilator and started getting around. She was making miraculous progress. Within two more days, she was moved to a regular room. She said that the ICU nurses were crying as she was moved - they couldn’t believe the progress she had made in just a few short days.

12 NEA HEALTH • 2017

“I went from death’s door to back full time. It was a miracle. The staff is responsible, they did it with the Lord’s help, but they did it. My experience was unbelievable. I know they had other patients, but I never wanted for anything.” Tracy told us she was previously a smoker, but hasn’t even thought of a cigarette since surgery.

After a ten day stay in the hospital, Tracy was discharged on a Friday and began cardiac rehab on Monday. The staff had already visited when she was in the hospital. They were overjoyed that first Monday morning. They could not believe that she looked so good. Tracy made life-long friends during her time in cardiac rehab, stating “My time in cardiac rehab was wonderful - I just love those girls. I made really good friends.” Two months after surgery, Tracy started feeling bad. She had a little trouble breathing so she went to Urgent Care to be checked out. She tested negative for the flu. Tracy spent the next five or six days in bed, then suddenly started feeling okay again. Within a week, she was feeling bad again and went back to Urgent Care. This time, she was treated for the flu and began feeling much better. Yet again, she started feeling bad again, even worse than before. Tracy decided it was time to call Dr. Efeobokhan, who recommended she go to the Emergency Department to find out what was going

on. Tracy ended up being admitted to the hospital and had many physicians working together to come to a diagnosis, including Dr. Quick, hospitalist, Dr. Hubbard, intensive/pulmonary care, Dr. Stroud, infectious disease, and Dr. Efeobokhan, cardiology. They ruled out further heart trouble but continued to run tests. Tracy was diagnosed with Dressler’s Syndrome - an uncommon condition that primarily affects patients who recently had open heart surgery. The condition caused inflammation and required a strong anti-inflammatory. Within a few days, she felt 100% back to normal and was discharged after spending five days total in the hospital. Once again, Tracy had nothing but kind words to share about her hospital stay at NEA Baptist, “They didn’t even know me, but they put their lives on hold to help. They made a promise to me that they were going to help me feel better - and they did.” Tracy’s story is unbelievable. The resounding message during her interview was that every step of the way, God had her back and he had a plan for her. Nothing was a coincidence. If Tracy had experienced a heart attack and had not been at a hospital when it happened, it would have been fatal. When we asked Tracy what she hoped to tell people about her story, she shared the following thoughts with us.

to their doctors. A nurse that cared for me in the ICU has set up an appointment with a cardiologist because she hasn’t felt well. Women just do not have the same symptoms as men. If you feel like something’s not right, it’s simple. Just talk to your doctor. They want to hear and the more you tell them, the better they can treat you.” “I work at Back in Action and I’ve had many of my female patients ask me what happened. They knew I was at work one day and had surgery the next. There were so many prayers, God was overwhelmed with prayers during this time. I want these women to know - I’m so stubborn. I’m the last to go but it is so easy - just go to your primary care doctor if you don’t feel right. Clear your mind. You don’t have to live your life in fear. Even if it is one symptom, get it checked out so you will at least know. The medical team couldn’t believe I was even walking around with the amount of blockage I had. My only symptom was fatigue.”

God has a plan for me.

“I don’t think the doctors, nurses and staff realize how they affect you. I will never, ever forget them. They will always be a part of me. Everyone was so compassionate, yet so knowledgeable. I know they think they are just going in and doing their job, but it leaves a life long impact. They have truly impacted our lives, yet they are so humble. My grandchildren still have a grandma, my kids still have a mom, my husband still has a wife.” “This could have easily gone the other way. The doctors could have said that they had done all they could do, but they didn’t. They never left my side or gave up on me. He (Dr. Halal) is just so humble. He won’t give up on you.” “One thing I remember after waking up was that foods suddenly tasted different. Even the people preparing the meals were amazing. They came in to ask, ‘What do you like?’, and every meal had something I enjoyed.” “I was 53.” (Tracy has since celebrated a birthday). “I was in good health. I had no family history, I had no problems. I just hope my story may encourage other women to be more aware and to talk

“God has a plan for me. I know there’s a really special plan now, I’m not sure what it is yet, but I know he will reveal it to mean. I know I’m meant to live.” “They are going to take care of you here at NEA Baptist. I received follow up calls every few days. They wanted to make sure I was taking my medicine, they asked if I was feeling okay. You are not just a name and they will not leave you alone. They have constantly been in touch since the beginning to make sure I’m going to my appointments and feeling okay.” Editor’s Note: Tracy continues to follow up with Dr. Efeovbokhan to keep an eye on her heart health. During the time that this magazine was being published, Tracy experienced another episode. She passed out at work and was brought by ambulance to our emergency department. Dr. Efeovbokhan took Tracy back to do another heart cath and we are happy to report that everything went well. After all she has experienced this year, her message to us yet again was about how wonderful her care team was at the hospital. We admire Tracy’s strength and hopefulness in sharing her story with others. Our thoughts and prayers are with Tracy and her family as she continues to recover and regain her health.

13 NEA HEALTH • 2017

A Look Back C

ongratulations to NEA Baptist Clinic for its 40 years of service to Northeast Arkansas. It has been a long and sometimes difficult road that has led to a world class health care system in our community. Looking back at the changes in medicine over the past 40 years involves looking back at my own career and experiences.

In 1975 and 1976, while in college at ASU, I worked as an orderly at St. Bernard’s Hospital. I love and respect the over 100 year history of service that St. Bernard’s has provided to this community. At that time there were a number of “GP’s” (general practitioners) who served this community. They represent an era of medicine that has long since gone away. Those doctors attended patients in the hospital, performed surgery, delivered babies, worked in their offices and made house calls. This list includes: Dr. John Farris, Dr. Durwood Wisdom, Dr. Sheppard, Dr. Mo Peeler, Dr. Joe Ledbetter, Dr. Aaron Modelevsky, Dr. Hermie Plunk, Dr. Bascom Rainey, Dr. Ernie Hogue, Dr. James Robinette and my personal hero Dr. Grover Poole. In the late 1970’s, a new generation of Family Practitioners came to town. They included Dr. Bob Lawrence and Dr. Joe Stallings, Dr. Mike Crawley, Dr. Mike Tedder and the Dr. Sears brothers, Glen and Larry. Also about that time, the AHEC Family Practice program (part of UAMS) began at St. Bernard’s. This program’s mission was to train family doctors that might live and practice medicine in

Northeast Arkansas. This program has been remarkably successful. I graduated from medical school in 1980 and was fortunate to be in the first class of AHEC Family Practice residents, along with Dr. Mark Brown, Dr. Dwight Williams and Dr. Lewis Lyons. Since that time, the AHEC/UAMS program has produced many Family Physicians that serve this community and others around our state. In 1983, I opened a Family Practice clinic in Jonesboro. Solo practice was rewarding but also very demanding; working in the office, taking calls and attending patients in the hospital was overwhelming. Fortunately, I was blessed to have a wonderful and supportive wife and family. During my career, there has been an explosion of technology, an explosion of new drugs and drug companies, and the intrusion of insurance companies and government into our lives and practice. I was most honored to play a part at the beginning of NEA Clinic, an organization led by some of the most remarkable and dedicated physicians that I have ever known. When the Windover Clinic was built, the Urgent Care after hours clinic was started - this certainly has changed the dynamic of primary care in this community. I have seen the evolution of integrated healthcare and our clinic has become part of a large healthcare system.

Douglas Maglothin, MD Family Medicine NEA Baptist Clinic - Windover 870.935.5432

14 NEA HEALTH • 2017

I was blessed to be a part of beginning the Jonesboro Church Health Clinic, the Center on Aging and the St. Bernard’s Senior Clinic. Thanks to the efforts of Flo Jones, I witnessed the incredible impact of Hospice care and now serve as Medical Director of Dierksen Hospice and I have enjoyed attending patients and serving as Medical Director at Craighead Nursing Center for over 25 years. I have always felt that my job was valuable and important (at least in my own mind). I have attended patients at the beginning of life and at the end. I have seen good people suffer and die prematurely and have seen patients outlive any quality of life. I have witnessed the peace and joy that patients or families of faith have even when facing an impossible situation. When it is all said and done, the basic practice of medicine has not really changed that much in 40 years. It essentially comes down to the patient and the doctor in an exam room. The patient tells their story, the doctor listens, examines the patient and orders tests or treatments based on that encounter. The practice of medicine is a special blend of science, technology, experience and intuition. The relationship of a patient and physician is unique. We are the “keeper of secrets” and the witness to human strength and frailty. In the past 34 years of practice, I have been honored to serve many remarkable families and patients. It has not always been easy, but given the chance, I would do it all again in a heartbeat!

Find the Right Care All in One Place NEA Baptist doctors have been offering compassionate, specialized care in our region for more than 40 years. Our unique, integrated medical campus combines our specialty clinics, the Fowler Family Center for Cancer Care and our 228-bed hospital, offering you the convenience of the right care in one place, with one electronic medical record. You have access to all of this through our primary care clinics located throughout our region. Finding the right care has never been easier. Get better with Baptist.

Get Better.



n 1977, Dr. Ray Hall moved home to Jonesboro to start the Northeast Arkansas Internal Medicine Clinic. As Dr. Hall began building his practice, he realized the need for specialty care in the region. Soon, Dr. Michael Mackey joined the clinic and became the region’s first medical subspecialist in nephrology. They also brought in the region’s first rheumatologist, hematologist-oncologist, pulmonologist, Dr. William Hubbard, and gastroenterologist, the late Dr. Harry (Hank) Jordan. The following physician leaders also joined during this time and became an integral part of the vision and growth of the clinic: Dr. Robert Taylor, non-invasive cardiologist, Dr. Michael Hightower, gastroenterologist, Dr. Stephen Woodruff, internist, Dr. Anthony White, cardiologist, Dr. Michael Isaacson, cardiologist, Dr. Ronald Blachly, hematologist-oncologist, Dr. Allen Nixon, hematologist-oncologist, and Dr. Carroll Scroggin, hematologist oncologist. In only ten years, the clinic grew to 15 physicians housed in an expanded 56,000 sq ft state-of-the-art facility containing an array of ancillary services. The clinic continued to experience growth in the second decade as a multispecialty group was formed and grew from 35 to 75 physicians. As the clinic began to grow into this multispecialty group, the name was changed to NEA Clinic. Dr. Doug Maglothin, along 16 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Dr. Doug Maglothin & others innovate the urgent care concept Clinic grows from 35 to 75 physicians Contribute to the development of cardiovascular surgery and a cancer center at St. Bernard’s Medical Center, where clinic physicians practiced exclusively for 18 years. A multispecialty group forms Satellite clinics in primary care open in several regional communities NEA Internal Medicine Clinic becomes 25th medical group to affiliate with PhyCor, the leading national physician practice management organization The managed care movement stimulates the formation of “Group Without Walls”. The clinic begins to add Family Practitioners to enhance primary care Name changes to NEA Clinic NEA Health is published

1977 to 1986

Physicians Join: General Surgery, Dr. Russell Degges, Dr. Bruce Jones, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Charles Barker, Dr. Mark Stripling, Dr. Charles Dunn Specialties added: Optometry & Ophthamology, Physical Therapy, Clinical Research Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery

Dr. Ray Hall, Jr., opens Northeast Arkansas Internal Medicine Clinic Dr. Michael Mackey - the clinic & region’s first medical subspecialist in Nephrology opens dialysis unit Two story clinic addition completed Clinic Recruits Region’s First: Pulmonologist - Dr. William Hubbard, Gastroenterologist, & The late Dr. Harry (Hank) Jordan, Hematologist-Oncologist, Rheumatologist

1987 to 1996

Physicians Join: Dr. Robert Taylor, Internist and Non-Invasive Cardiologist, Dr. Michael Hightower - Gastroenterology, Dr. Stephen Woodruff - Internal Medicine, Dr. Anthony White, Cardiology, Dr. Michael Isaacson, Cardiology, Dr. Ronald Blachly, Hematology-Oncology, Dr. Allen Nixon, Hematology-Oncology, Dr. Carroll Scroggin, Hematology-Oncology A four story, 32,000 sq. ft. addition completed In only ten years, the clinic grew to 15 physicians housed in a 56,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art facility containing an array of ancillary services

17 NEA HEALTH • 2017

NEA Clinic Charitable Foundation receives the Edward R. Loveland Award

with others, innovated the urgent care concept in the region and primary care clinics also began to open in regional communities. Community partnerships began forming and physicians of NEA Clinic continued to assess the needs of the community. At this time, the clinic physicians adopted dual acute care coverage for both hospitals in the community and also assumed operation of what was then The Athletic Club of Jonesboro. In 2001, the physicians of NEA Clinic formed NEA Clinic Charitable Foundation. They were dedicated to forming a foundation that would serve locally and help those in need. The first program was Medicine Assistance, followed by HopeCircle, Center for Healthy Children, ShareHope and Wellness Works. All programs are still in place and continue to serve those in need regardless of where the patient receives health care or their ability to pay. The foundation will open a new, comprehensive grief center late 2017. 1997 to 2006

Partnered with Methodist Hospital of Jonesboro and clinic physicians adopt dual acute care hospital coverage Early 2000, Tenet Corporation purchases Methodist Hospital of Jonesboro; the clinic assumes operation of The Athletic Club of Jonesboro The clinic regains independence from PhyCor and the medical group contracts to 43 physicians; a new era and new vision is embraced NEA Clinic Charitable Foundation formed - Medicine Assistance - the first program followed by HopeCircle, Center for Healthy Children, ShareHope & Wellness Works. 2001 & 2005 - clinic named a winner of AMGA Medical Group

18 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Sleep Center opens Dr. Robert Taylor receives the Robert S. Abernathy award Dr. Isaacson elected Governor of the AR Chapter of American College of Cardiology 2010, Baptist Memorial Health Care partners with NEA Clinic to form the state’s only integrated healthcare delivery system Ground breaks on a new $400 million medical campus, the single largest healthcare project in AR in last decade $5 million dollar donation by Wallace & Jama Fowler created an endowment for patients at NEA Baptist Cancer Center Early 2014, NEA Baptist moves to the new medical campus and opens 1st comprehensive cancer center in region

EPIC Electronic Medical Record System installed Dr. Michael Hong Hospital Wing Opened From Vision to Reality, The Evolution of NEA Baptist Clinic by Dr. Hall published 1st Clinic to host AR Chapter of ACP Annual Scientific Session 24 private-bed, inpatient rehab unit opens New medical school opens at A-State, NEA Baptist physicians join faculty Expansions grow hospital to 228 beds Application to ACGME to begin an Internal Medicine Residency Program - July 2018 NEA Baptist Center for Good Grief announced to open Specialties added: Physical Medicine/Rehab, Urology, Radiation Oncology, Senior Care, Dermatology, Gynecologic Oncology, Wound Care

Preeminence Award Outstanding Clinic in U.S. NEA Clinic acquires 40% share of NEA Medical Center (Formerly Regional Medical Center of NEA) with Triad Corporation Dr. Steve Woodruff - receives Robert S. Abernathy Award Baptist Memorial Health Care Corporation of Memphis purchases NEA Medical Center Specialties added: Anesthesiology, Emergency Medicine, Endocrinology, Hospitalist, Laser Center, Infectious Disease, Otolaryngology, Neurology, Neurosurgery, Orthopedic, Surgery, Podiatry, Physical Therapy, Pediatrics, Pain Management, Radiology, Occupational Medicine

2007 to 2016

The clinic and physicians also began garnering state and national attention for their work. In 2001, the clinic was named a winner of the AMGA Medical Group Preeminence Award as an outstanding clinic in the U.S. Early into the fourth decade, NEA Clinic Charitable Foundation received the Edward R. Loveland award. At the end of this decade, Baptist Memorial Health Care Corporation out of Memphis, TN purchased NEA Medical Center (Hospital).

Additional specialties were added in the last 20 years, bringing the total of specialties to about 35 and making NEA Baptist Clinic one of the largest multispecialty groups in the state. The last decade has exceeded the growth pattern of the first thirty years. In 2010, Baptist Memorial Health Care partnered with NEA Clinic to form the states only integrated healthcare delivery system.

Trumann - Spring 2018

2017 & Beyond

NEA Baptist broke ground on a new $400 million medical campus, the single largest healthcare project in AR in that decade, featuring a 181 bed hospital, an integrated specialty medical office building and a free standing comprehensive cancer center. The new campus opened early 2014 and has already experienced many expansions in the last three years, bringing the total number of hospital beds to 228. The health system also installed the EPIC electronic medical record system – combining all patient records at any Baptist facility in one convenient, secure place for care providers and patients.

Future Growth New Trumann Facility Residency Students Start at Medical Campus New Doctors New Specialities Grief Center Opens and more...

19 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Oncology: How Medicine Has Changed...


n 1991, I joined Drs. Ron Blachly and Allen Nixon to practice medical oncology and hematology at NEA Clinic. We wrote the chemotherapy orders by hand and administered treatment in a very nice suite in the newer part of the clinic.

Without computers, we had to do literature searches at the AHEC library to review the newest treatments for different cancers and for treatment of rare cancers. Patients had to go to different sites to receive chemotherapy and radiation treatments. The oncology program at NEA Baptist Clinic has evolved into a multi-specialty practice. The new Fowler Family Center for Cancer Care provides comprehensive, integrated care for cancer treatment with medical oncology, state of the art radiation therapy, and gynecologic oncology services provided under one roof. Supportive services for patients and their families include HopeCircle, nurse navigator program and the clinical trial department. A new grief center will be opening later this year to help people cope with the loss of a loved one. Over the years, oncologic care has grown tremendously with new treatments targeting individual mutations which cause cancer and with treatments stimulating the body’s immune system to fight cancer. Remarkable progress has been made with supportive care therapy to help reduce side Carroll Scroggin, MD Oncology NEA Baptist Clinic 870.936.7000 20 NEA HEALTH • 2017

effects of therapy, such as nausea and complications from low blood counts. Also, there has been an emphasis in improving quality of care of cancer treatment and preventing long term post treatment complications. The Fowler Family Center for Cancer Care is the first cancer center in the state to be certified as a QOPI (Quality Initiative Practice Initiative) site. This certification reflects an ongoing assessment of and commitment of our practice to provide quality of care and a standard of excellence in the care of cancer patients. One of the services that I am very proud of is our clinical trial department which has been present at NEA Baptist Clinic since I joined the practice in 1991. The only way to make advances in oncology care and treatment is for patients to participate in clinical trials looking at promising drugs. Many patients over the years have participated in clinical trials and have received therapy that is now standard of care. Along with our oncology partners at Baptist Memphis, we have been selected as a Clinical Oncology Research Program (NCORP) as a minority underserved community site by the National Cancer Institute. This program provides opportunities for cancer patients to participate in clinical trials for the prevention, screening and treatment of many different cancers. I am proud to live in a community which provides so much support to our cancer programs. I am humbled and grateful for the generous donations made for our supportive services which help patients and their families during the hardship of going through treatment. I am also grateful to the many volunteers who help support the cancer programs and provide emotional support to patients.

JUST ANOTHER RUNNING ARTICLE THAT JUST MIGHT CHANGE THE WAY YOU LOOK AT RUNNING. I can’t imagine there are many people out there that have not heard about the health benefits of running at some point. Most people could tell you that running is good for your cardiovascular system. It can lower your risk of heart attack or stroke by helping you to lower or maintain blood pressure. They would also tell you that running is a good way to burn calories and lose or maintain weight. Some may even say it helps you live longer. While all of these things are true, it does not seem to be enough to get more people motivated. According to the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, only about five percent of American adults do some sort of physical activity on any given day. That is alarming to think that 95% of adults are not doing any form of regular exercise. Of course there are always excuses like “I don’t have time” or “Running is too hard,” but these are just excuses. If we are honest with ourselves, we know that we can find a way to exercise if we want to bad enough. So we know that running is good for our heart and can help us maintain a healthy weight, but are there other reasons that people run? Are all of the non-runners missing out on something that they are not aware of?

The answer is a resounding yes! If you have never stuck with a running program for a while you probably think running is just painful, tedious and exhausting, followed by struggling to catch your breath, fatigue and muscle soreness. But what you may be missing out on is the feeling of accomplishment, the euphoric feeling after a long run, the increased energy experience or even sleeping better. Wait…what am I saying? Am I trying to tell you that running will make you feel better not worse? Am I saying you will feel good about having sore legs and sweating profusely? Am I saying you might sleep better or be in a better mood? The answer to all of these questions is yes. While everyone responds differently to exercise there is a lot of research that shows all of these benefits and more. Let’s start with the brain. According to a study in the journal ‘Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience,’ running can have positive influences on the blood flow to the hippocampus which is the key region that is affected by Alzheimer’s disease. Also, intense

endurance activity like running is suspected to lead to an increase in endocannabinoids – the brain chemicals that signal pleasure, according to a study published in the Journal of Experimental Biology. So running is good for your brain and can make you feel happier, but what about sleeping? Well, running can help there as well. The Journal of Adolescent Health found that people who run regularly show objectively improved sleep. In addition they had subjective reports of getting better sleep, better concentration, and being in a better mood. Another way running may improve sleep is from the positive benefits on mood, depression, and anxiety which allows you to relax better in preparation for sleep.

may reduce your risk of osteoporosis. There are even studies that show regular physical exercise like running can reduce your risk of several forms of cancer and may reduce your chances of developing diabetes. Running may also lower your risk of blood clots and can boost your immune system. With so many positives to running, why aren’t more people doing it? Maybe they just need to read an article that brings these things to light. Maybe they need a friend to help motivate them. Maybe they need an event to look forward to so they can set goals. If you have any concerns, check with your doctor to see if you are okay to start a running program. If you have some old injuries or pains that limit your ability to run, then see a physical therapist for an evaluation.

So, you start running and you will be in a better mood, feel more accomplished, sleep better, Get a running buddy, set a goal, and get moving! have better mental focus, and have a healthier heart… Is that all? NO! There is more. Running can help prevent diseases. For women, running may lower your risk of breast cancer. It Brian Lewis, PTA Outpatient Physical Therapy NEA Baptist Clinic 870.936.8000

21 NEA HEALTH • 2017

A Patient’s Appreciation

“I was there (NEA Baptist Breast Imaging Center) a couple months ago and they were so genuine, compassionate, and caring. NEA Baptist is the best! I’m so glad all my doctors are affiliated with them! I have never had a bad experience and all the people have been so unbelievably nice! So so thankful. Thanks for awesome care during MRI today. Staff is amazing. Just want to say thanks to all my nurses and Dr. Degges that took such good care of me during my stay at NEA when I had surgery. So thanks to a great group of people.


I was at the Breast Imaging Center in July for the first time at NEA for mammogram and some procedures and those ladies took the time to listen and explain every detail. I will admit I was a little scared at first because (it was the) first time something being found but Dr. Heidi Umphrey was so caring and compassionate that eased my fear and everything turned out alright NEA Baptist is the best. I want to thank the nurses and doctors in the emergency room last night. I was scared and upset by the end of the night they had me at ease.

aches and ining about stomach pla m co fé Ca sh Ca e had a doctor. I was sitting in th Johnson asked me if I town, Dr. o” “B rt be Ro en wh bleeding ulcers notch doctor in . me about a new top e pay phone to call Dr That’s when he told to d went straight th all the very next day. an up t go Bo . all H Ray Dr. H appointment to meet Hall’s office. I had an Hall had me y in the hospital Dr. sta a d an rk wo od edy- one half After a lot of blo ars doing the home rem e Dr. Hall ye t en sp I r. tte be le feeling a litt of water befor of soda with a full glass teaspoon of baking ptoms and get me off sym y m e to help manag n tio rip esc pr a nd fou the baking soda. led me at home. the blue Dr. Hall cal of t ou d an d sse pa t come out and he A few years w process that had jus my trust in Dr. ne a t ou ab ard he he He said it. With all d e right candidate for thought I would be th ithin five days of treatment, I no longer ha W d . an it” all do for Dr. H Hall I said “let’s this day I thank God To . ers za ulc piz ing eat ed ble to live with edicines. I can owledge of internal m his dedication and kn no problem. him and spicy foods with and these days I see to all since the late 70’s H es . lik Dr o th wh wi d en en fri be e od I’v ider him a go ns co I s. th say on m to e six lik regularly every ncern. I would and always shows co keep me on my feet ysician. ph at being a truly gre thank you Dr. Hall for

Ronnie Jones

What Does It Mean To Be A Center of Excellence?

EA Baptist Memorial Hospital is designated a Center of Excellence in bariatric surgery (surgery for obesity). What does that mean for our patients?

Center of Excellence (COE) is a term bantered about when promoting various services provided by hospitals and other health care entities. Sometimes the term means that the hospital, doctors, and nurses have put special emphasis on a particular service or disease. Other times COE is little more than a marketing term. Many times individual hospitals determine their own criteria for Center of Excellence. These criteria may be different for hospitals across the country or even in the same town. In such cases, patients cannot K. Bruce Jones, MD Bariatric and General Surgery NEA Baptist Clinic 870.936.8000 22 NEA HEALTH • 2017

be sure care is equivalent from one place to another. On the other hand, Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence status is only granted after a rigorous process that is standardized for all hospitals across the United States. The American College of Surgeons (ACS), the scientific standard bearer for surgeons, and the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) have combined to produce standards for designation as a center of excellence in bariatrics. NEA Baptist has received the highest designation given in bariatrics by the American College program. From the time a patient first inquires about weight loss surgery, through the educational process, during the surgery, and through long-term follow-up, our patients can be confident that they are receiving the same level of optimal care as any other certified center. Surgeon and staff education, hospital infrastructure, protocols for care, and patient outcome through an American College of Surgeon registry are all rigorously evaluated in the American College of Surgeons – American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery COE process. Learn more about our Bariatric Surgery program by visiting or by calling 870-936-8000

A cne Treatment for


Ages There is a lot of inaccurate information about acne on the web, through social media, and through well-meaning friends and family. For your best information on acne you should consult your board certified dermatologist. Learning more about the causes of acne will help you make more informed decisions on the correct treatment and prevention to put your best face forward. What causes acne?

Acne begins when the pores in our skin are clogged with dead skin cells. Dead skin cells are shed from the skin every day. Normally the skin produces an important oil called sebum that keeps our skin from drying out. As we go through the different stages of life our skin produces different levels of this oil. At puberty our hormones change and we produce more of this oil. When we have too much oil the dead skin cells can group together becoming trapped in the pores of our skin. When bacteria that is on the skin makes its way into a clogged pore, the conditions are just right for those

bacteria to start multiplying. This leads to the pores becoming inflamed – appearing red and swollen –and if that inflammation spreads enough it causes an acne cyst or nodule. What are the differences in various types of acne?

The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) website lists the many ways acne may appear. Acne may appear pimples (medically known as pustules), blackheads, whiteheads, cysts, nodules, and papules. The face is a common site for acne but it may also appear on your back, chest, neck, shoulders, upper arms and buttocks. What kind of skin care routine helps prevent acne?

The AAD recommends gently washing the face twice a day with a mild cleanser to aid in the prevention of acne. You should also wash after excessive sweating, after wearing gym equipment, hats/helmets, etc. It’s important to treat your skin gently – using your fingertips rather than an abrasive material such as washcloth or mesh sponge. Using alcohol-free products and avoiding products that may irritate your skin are the best way to prevent problems. Other tips include rinsing your face with luke warm water (hot and cold can be too harsh), washing your hair often (daily if it is oily), avoid touching your skin and avoiding the sun and/or tanning beds. It

Johnathan J. Ledet, MD Dermatology NEA Baptist Clinic 870.936.8000 24 NEA HEALTH • 2017


cne is the most common skin condition in the United States. It is also called acne vulgaris and effects 1 out of every 6 Americans. While most of the people affected by acne are teens and young adults, acne can occur at any age including adults into their 50’s and beyond.

is very important to avoid picking at acne as this will lead to scarring. It is a common myth that sunlight can aid in the treatment of acne, however exposure to the damaging UV rays can lead to potential consequences such as wrinkles or more importantly skin cancer. Also, many oral acne medications are sensitive to sunlight and may increase tendency to burning. When should I see a dermatologist about acne?

The correct treatment (and prevention) of acne is important. Not only can acne leave physical evidence such as dark spots and permanent scarring, it also has numerous psychological effects including low selfesteem, depression, and shame. A dermatologist is skilled in identifying factors that may be causing acne outbreaks, aiding in the establishment of a good skin care routine, and implementing a course of action to treat the acne. There are a variety of treatment options for acne that have proven to be successful. These options may include topical treatment such as creams, gels, lotions or solutions, over-the-counter treatments and cosmetics, oral medications and even physical procedures. Seeing a dermatologist is the best way to treat your acne and create a treatment plan that fits you. There are times when acne cannot be treated through simple skin care maintenance and over the counter treatment options. If you have not had luck treating your acne, I recommend making an appointment to a board certified dermatologist to get your acne under control.

NEA Clinic Through the Years


hen we arrived on the scene in Jonesboro in the early years no subspecialty medicine was available in Northeast Arkansas at all. All of our patients in need of specialty care had to be sent to major cities. We made a commitment to develop all of the medicine specialties, so we added nephrology with dialysis, gastroenterology with endoscopy, cardiology with heart cath and pacemaker capability, hematologyoncology with chemotherapy, rheumatology with infusional treatment of arthritis, pulmonary with bronchoscopy and critical care expertise. Soon came neurology, dermatology, and endocrinology. Then came the surgical specialties that complimented these areas and Jonesboro started to become the medical center of our region.

We outgrew 311 E. Matthews and with a need to expand our primary care base, we reached out and added family medicine to our ranks and developed a system of urgent care centers. Soon many surgeons joined the clinic as well. Now we have over 100 board certified physicians and over 50 advanced practice professionals (APRN, PA, CRNA). After Tenet Corporation left the hospital on Stadium in 2008, we entered into a jointventure with Triad Corporation in Dallas, Texas to purchase and stabilize that hospital. In so doing, we learned much about what is

….We noticed the look of love in your eyes for your patient. We noticed the sweet, sincere compliments given to brighten her spirit. We noticed the extra time spent listening to her stories and never making her feel like she was keeping you from something more important. We noticed that she considered you FRIENDS not just someone who got a paycheck to treat her ailment. We know that NEA has The Daisy Award, but each of you deserve more, because you give more than an award can repay. You give your whole heart to each patient you serve, not just this

needed to run a hospital enterprise. Triad was purchased by a rival company in early 2007, but we were not part of that transaction. We then turned to Baptist Memorial Healthcare Corp. in Memphis as a joint partner in 2007. That of course led us to eventually form a fully integrated healthcare organization in 2010, with plans to build a futuristic medical center. The dream became a reality in 2014 as we moved into our advanced medical center on East Johnson. We opened at 181 private rooms and now have 228 beds available in the hospital. We have the capacity to expand up to 300 beds eventually. The clinic office building is now almost fully occupied and plans are underway to add another 5 story office building. This will bring us close to 1 million square foot under one roof with a full service cancer center just behind the hospital, and 12 family practice suites in our region. Recognition of our progress is all around us as we were recently recognized by HealthGrades. com as the only hospital in Arkansas to be awarded the 5 star designation in patient safety and patient experience. Our Emergency Room sees over 40,000 patients a year and our clinics see over 400,000 patients yearly. We have over 2,000 employees in our system at this time. Our physicians are recognized throughout the state as exceptional in performance. In July of 2018 we start a new venture as we begin an Internal Medicine physician training program. We were recently granted permission by the American College of Graduate Medical Education to train 18

doctors in this field. This achievement now makes us an academic medical center as well. Our foundation with 5 programs has been unique in the US and has been awarded the Loveland Award for Excellence by the American College of Physicians. This fall the Center on Good Grief will open to expand our outreach to the community. The American Medical Group Association has awarded us the Preeminence Award 3 times in our recent history. Fourty years passes so quickly! We have had our struggles and successes but overall we have been so blessed to have had wonderful community support, great patients, a talented and dedicated support staff with exceptional physicians, and forward-thinking leaders. In many ways we feel like we have really just started on a journey toward excellence. It is our dream that in generations to come, NEA Baptist Clinic and Hospital will be a beacon of hope and excellence in medicine as we serve out our mission in this region.

Stephen Woodruff, MD Internal Medicine NEA Baptist Clinic 870.936.8000

one woman and her family. We are forever grateful to each of you and consider you our friends as well! Thank you! I can’t speak highly enough about the care our bug (child) received the last 5 days. From the ultrasound tech, the ER staff and Dr. All the nurses, techs, and other staff on 4200 hall. The techs who did her EGD… For the 1st time in almost 6 months our daughter is going to sleep with no pain. Praising God for every single thing...

This is the man (picture from post not included) who saved my life...thank you sir.. You will forever be remembered in my prayers. Also the 4th floor staff are the very best I’ve ever had care for me in any hospital. There’s to many to remember all their names but 4 of them I do...Ellie, Christina, Dottie & Dianna, certainly made me remember them. But to each one of the staff I say thank you from the bottom of my heart. And also​you Doc. Thank you from the bottom of my heart! And may gods blessings shine on you all! 25 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Meet Abby!

Same Day Appointments Insect Bites

She is a service dog that visits our patients to help in recovery and to provide some comfort.

Insect bites can cause irritation, and can be taken care of at home. If there is shortness of breath or swelling around or in the mouth, call 911 or take them to the emergency department.

Wheezing is a sign that your child may be having breathing problems. It is usually heard when your child breathes out. If your child is wheezing, he/she should see their pediatrician.

Runny Nose


You can treat a runny nose with saline spray, anti-histamines, or decongestants. If the runny nose persists longer than 7-10 days, or your child has thick, sticky mucus, they should see a pediatrician.

Eye drainage can be caused by allergies, viruses, or bacteria. Use warm compresses and massage upwards from the bridge of the child’s nose towards the corner of their eye. If a child has swelling or redness of the eyelid or eyeball, they should see a pediatrician.


A child with frequent headaches should see a pediatrician. Keep a diary of the headaches. Include the time it starts, how long, how bad was the pain, what food they ate, what activities, and what relieved the pain.



Eye Drainage

Fever is a temperature above 100.4. Infants under 2 months of age, contact your pediatrician immediately. Your pediatrician can determine the source.

A coughing child needs to stay rested and hydrated. Honey helps soothe the throat, but should not be given to children under 12 months of age. If the cough sounds deep, wet, or is persistent, see a pediatrician.

Not all sore throats are caused by strep bacteria. Sore throats can be caused by viruses, persistent coughing, or even allergies. Your child should be seen by their pediatrician to determine what treatment is needed.

Sore Throat

Call ahead 870-936-7937 or schedule through MyChart for same day appointments at NEA Baptist Clinic – Pediatrics.

26 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Get Better.

Better Care for your Family Compassionate, High Quality Care As Your Children Grow Wellness Visits Sports Physicals • Vaccines Baptist OneCare© MyChart 24/7 access to all health records for the entire family Stay Connected & Informed • Immunizations & allergies • Checkup & appointment reminders • Fill prescriptions & much more

Make an appointment 870-936-7937

Get Better. NEA Baptist Clinic - Pediatrics MaryJoanne Umeora, MD | Richard Reinhard, III, MD | Tomorrow Potter, APRN 1150 E. Matthews, Suite 101 | Jonesboro, AR |

Caring for our Community NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation is proud to offer these services free to our community and to help improve the overall health of its residents.

Center for Good Grief - The center is an expansion of the Kemmons Wilson Family Center for Good Grief in Memphis, TN. It is the first comprehensive bereavement center of its kind in northeast Arkansas that provides support for individuals who are grieving the death of a loved one. Participants can share their experience through individual counseling and/or group sessions as they move through the healing process – all in a therapeutic environment. Our professional, caring staff is dedicated to providing comprehensive bereavement services to children, teenagers, and adults. HopeCircle - HopeCircle provides a community of hope, support, and educational programming, free of charge for families living with a catastrophic illnesses, particulary cancer.

Medicine Assistance Program - This program helps patients obtain their prescriptions from pharmaceutical companies for FREE. Started in March 2002, the Medicine Assistance Program (MAP) aids in preparing the correct paperwork and assists in obtaining these prescriptions from the pharmaceutical companies. Center For Healthy Children - A FREE exercise and nutrition education program for children who struggle with weight problems. Working directly with the schools and physician offices, the Center for Healthy Children takes referrals of overweight children who have a BMI (Body Mass Index) of 30 or greater. Our target ages for the center is children 8-12 years old. We have also added a teen program for ages 13-17. It is our goal to teach the participating children and their families nutrition education and exercise habits that will last a lifetime. Having the center located at the NEA Baptist Clinic Wellness Center enables us to help the families become active.

Wellness Works! - Wellness Works is a FREE exercise and nutrition education program to help individuals cope with a chronic illness. The goal is to help participants improve their quality of life through proper nutrition, education and exercise. This program is offered FREE to the community and is funded by the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation. ShareHope - A FREE support program for those whose lives are touched by the tragic death of a baby through pregnancy loss, stillbirth or in the first few months of life. The primary purpose is to provide support toward positive resolution of grief experienced at the time of or following the death of a baby. This support encompasses emotional, physical, spiritual and social healing, as well as sustaining the family unit. The secondary purpose of ShareHope is to provide information, education and resources on the needs and rights of bereaved parents and siblings.

PO Box 1960 Jonesboro, AR 72403 870.936.8479 • Fax 870.934.3632 @NEABaptgiving

Celebrating! T

his year NEA Baptist Clinic celebrates 40 years of service to our region. That’s four decades of providing great health care to the community our doctors call home. Four decades of creating a visionary health care system that’s built to evolve with the ever-changing delivery of medical technology. Many things have happened over those forty years, but one of the items our physicians are most proud of is the creation of the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation. Over 15 years ago, the physicians of NEA Baptist Clinic started the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation as a way to give back to their community. Through the creation of this non-profit foundation and its initial program- Medicine Assistance Program, the physicians believed they could meet the needs of many of their patients as well as others throughout the region. Through the Medicine Assistance Program, the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation has helped patients, who could not afford their medications, obtain their much needed maintenance medicines by working as a liaison between the pharmaceutical companies and patients. Over the years, the program has worked closely with other non-profits in our community while helping tens of thousands of patients obtain well over $12,000,000 in needed medications. As the NEA Baptist Health System has grown, so has NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation. Over the foundation’s first ten years, four other programs were added to meet other needs in our community- HopeCircle, Center for Healthy Children, Wellness Works, and ShareHope. From the loss of a baby to those dealing with a cancer diagnosis, these additional programs were started to meet needs that no other agencies in our area were meeting. Thanks to the generous gift of our donors and the foresight of our physicians, patients and families have been helped, free of charge, through our unique programs. On March 1st, the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation announced the addition of a sixth program: the NEA Baptist Center for Good Grief. Through this new resource, the foundation will be able to provide free individualized grief counseling services by trained health care professionals to anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one. These free services will be available to children, teens and adults regardless of where they receive their health care and will be the only comprehensive grief counseling center in the state of Arkansas. The doors for this new center will open in mid-October. As NEA Baptist Clinic and its over 100 physicians celebrate forty years of service, we at the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation are grateful for their vision. It’s through their care and willingness to help others that we were born. Each day we see the faces of those who are helped through our five programs, simply because a group of physicians desired to make a difference in their community. So, the next time you are seeing your NEA Baptist Doctor, please take a moment and thank them for the many ways they give back to the community we love and call home. Robbie Johnson, Director of Development NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation


atients and family members of patients often ask us if there is a way to recognize a hospital or clinic employee who touched their lives. Maybe it was a doctor who showed just the right amount of compassion. Or a nurse who went above and beyond. Even a food service or housekeeping colleague who lifted your spirits during a difficult time with a single smile. The NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation has established a program to allow you to honor these everyday heroes with a tax deductible gift that supports the foundation. Health Care Heroe is a program that gives you the opportunity to honor a person who has had a significant impact on your health care experience. Any hospital or clinic employee is eligible. To honor your hero, visit You will find the Health Care Hero form under the Giving tab or email Robbie Johnson at In recognition, your recipient will receive a special pin designating them as a Health Care Hero. If you wish to receive a photo of your Hero’s recognition, simply give us your email address and we will send you a photo. You also have the option of directing your gift to a specific program within the foundation. Simply pick the program that you want to benefit from your gift.

About the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation The NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation was started by the physicians of the NEA Baptist Clinic, one of the largest physician owned multispecialty groups in the MidSouth. The physicians started the foundation as a way to not only give back to their community, but also to help meet unmet needs. With the creation of the new NEA Baptist Health system, NEA Baptist Clinic and NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital, the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation continues its legacy while being a part of this new partnership. The Foundation, through the generous gifts of our community, continues to touch the lives of people throughout Northeast Arkansas. We appreciate you choosing to honor your Health Care Hero by giving to the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation. 29 NEA HEALTH • 2017


ellness Works is helping change the lives of so many individuals in our community. This free wellness program is designed to help individuals cope with chronic illness with a 12 week exercise and nutrition program. So many people live with a chronic illness and want to get their life back on track. This program is exactly what we do for people who need that extra push to feeling better and stronger every day. This program as combined exercise and educational components to fit your current health status and pace. We have provided a specific Wellness Works! aerobics exercise class specifically for our participants. This class is a small group setting for individuals, with personal attention from one of our personal trainers to make sure we are providing safe and effective exercise techniques. In order to participate in this program you must be referred by your physician who can best determine whether you are a good candidate for these programs. For more information or to obtain a referral, you may visit our website www. or visit us at NEA Baptist Clinic Wellness Center at 2617 Phillips Drive, Jonesboro, AR 72401 or by calling (870) 936-7960.


enter for Healthy Children is changing lives of children in Northeast Arkansas.

We are here to teach children about living a healthy lifestyle though nutrition and exercise. This program gives them the opportunity to learn how to have fun while exercising and taking steps to eating healthier. They engage in fun filled activities such as swimming, team activities, proper exercise workouts and nutrition education. Nutrition classes include healthy cooking, basic nutrition, grocery shopping and label reading. Center for Healthy Children offers a 12 week session that focuses on helping children and their families learn to live a fit way of life through nutrition and physical activity. The program is free of charge for children ages 8-12 with a BMI (Body Mass Index) of 30 or greater and requires parental involvement. We have also added a teen program for ages 13-17. Our program has a fitness room that the children are able to explore during free play. The specially designed room includes a rock-climbing wall, stationary bicycles, Wii games and other equipment created specifically for children. The children also have use of the indoor swimming pool and indoor track at the NEA Baptist Clinic Wellness Center.

Erica Huffstetler, Program Manager Center For Healthy Children Wellness Works! NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation 30 NEA HEALTH • 2017


he Medicine Assistance Program (MAP) is a resource for locating free medications made available by pharmaceutical companies’ patient assistance programs. MAP provides assistance with application preparation, the research of individual guidelines to qualify, application submission and the patient appeal process. Enrolling into these programs starts with completing the MAP application. You can complete the application by phone or by downloading a copy from our website at Once MAP receives your information we will review our database to determine if there is a patient assistance program available for your medications. If an assistance program is located - MAP will forward the pharmaceutical assistance application over to you and your doctor. When your application is returned and the requested information is fully complete MAP will submit your application directly to the company. Our goal at NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation’s Medicine Assistance Program is to help qualified patients obtain the medications they need for free. It does not matter who your physician is or where you live. Anyone in need of medication assistance can apply. Most medications with patient assistance programs are brand name and do not have a generic substitute available. Narcotic medications are not available through patient assistance programs. Temporary medications such as antibiotics or cold and flu treatments are not available through patient assistance programs. NEA Baptist does not determine who qualifies for these programs. Each pharmaceutical company has set their own guidelines for approval. Most companies require patients to verify their income and level of prescription drug insurance coverage. If you have questions or would like more information about the Medicine Assistance Program call 870-9345400 or visit

Kelli Watson, Program Manager Medicine Assistance Program NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation

For Those Who Have Suffered the Loss of a Baby ShareHope, a program of NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation, is a FREE support program for those whose lives are touched by the tragic death of a baby through pregnancy loss, stillbirth or in the first few months of life. This support encompasses emotional, physical, spiritual and social healing, as well as sustaining the family unit. ShareHope also provides free information, education and resources on the needs and rights of bereaved parents and siblings.

Volunteer Opportunities Available. 870.936.8400 •


and we have just honored them during National Volunteer Week for what they do and what they are.

HopeCircle is able to be there for patients and families because of our donors and volunteers. Our donors provide the foundation that enables us to provide yarn for afghans & hats, snacks for patients, gas cards for those who need financial help to travel for treatment, and lodging for those who are unable to travel back and forth. While these and other services provided through donor support are important, the most important aspect and the “heart” of HopeCircle is our cadre of volunteers.

You lend a listening ear, when no one else is near You offer a comforting hug when things are tough You create items that provide warmth and love You open your heart to others needs What a HopeCircle Volunteer is: You are a light that shines through the dark times You are the touch that says “I care” You are the voice that signals “you are not alone” You are the heart of HopeCircle.

t HopeCircle we celebrate life’s blessings every day as we help our families take “today” and make it a good day, whatever their circumstances.

Our volunteers are why HopeCircle is a special haven for both patients and their families. The Resource Center affords them a place to feel comfortable and safe, where they are accepted and loved. Hugs, laughs, tears and stories abound in The Circle”. Our volunteers are as varied as our patients, but they all share one trait – a desire to “be there” for our families. We are grateful for our volunteers year-round

What a HopeCircle Volunteer does:

We are grateful to our donors and volunteers for all you do for HopeCircle and the many families whose lives you have blessed with your love and care. June Morse, HopeCircle Program Manager NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation

A new service for our community, a free standing Grief Center •

Opening in mid-October

Featuring age specific therapy rooms

Free individualized grief counseling to anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one regardless of where they receive their health care.

Staffed by Mandy Young, Clinical Director and two part-time therapists.

Future plans to construct a new center

For more information please call 870-936-8479 email 31 NEA HEALTH • 2017

Duck Season Is Coming


uck Classic is an innovative concept that combines a traditional fundraising banquet that includes live and silent auctions, with a duck-hunting tournament.

Proceeds from Duck Classic benefit the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation. Formed in 2001 by physicians of NEA Baptist Clinic, the NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation was organized as a way to give back to the community. We are often asked why duck hunting? When the foundation began 16 years ago, it was evident that the programs of the foundation were going to continue to grow and needed more funding. We wanted to do something different than a gala or a golf tournament. Many of our physicians and leadership are avid duck hunters. Because Northeast Arkansas has a deep resource and culture of duck hunting, some of our initial committee members thought that a duck-hunting tournament would be a unique way to raise money. Not only has Duck Classic raised thousands of dollars for our community, it has also increased popularity of our region as a duck hunting mecca. Attendees travel from all across the United States making Jonesboro and northeast Arkansas a hunting destination. In 2013 Drake’s Migration Nation attended the event and featured Duck Classic on their nationally televised show. The past two years Boomtime. tv has highlighted Duck Classic in an episode. The publicity has helped the event grow.

National sponsors have picked up on the two day event and like the idea of combining a sport with charity, major brands like UnderArmour, Yeti, Banded, Avery, Drake and numerous local businesses including DNW Outdoors, Glen Sain Motors, and Barton Powersports, support the event through donations. Thanks to our sponsors and community support, this year we are celebrating 15 years of Duck Classic!

Wellness Works – a free medical and health professionally monitored fitness program available exclusively for patients with a chronic illness.

Duck Classic is a unique way for hunters to come to northeast Arkansas and hunt our beautiful fields, while giving back to charity.

HopeCircle: a community of hope, support, and educational programs free for families living with catastrophic illness or event.

Even if you don’t hunt our banquet has something for everyone. The dinner and live auction will be held Thursday night, December 7th at the ASU convocation center.

Center for Good Grief: the first comprehensive bereavement center of its kind in Northeast Arkansas that provides support for individuals who are grieving the death of a loved one.

The event is casual and fast paced. The silent and live auctions are packed with lots of great items. While there are items that deal with hunting, there also trips, jewelry, and products for your home, family and even your dog!

For more information about Duck Classic or NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation visit us on Facebook or our websites.

Some of the auction items can be viewed on Facebook and our website - Duck Our auction is online and will go live on Thanksgiving Day. You can register and bid on all the silent auction items online. All proceeds from Duck Classic benefit NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation and its programs.

Center for Healthy Children: a free program for children and teens who struggle with weight problems. Medicine Assistance Program: helps patients get their prescriptions from pharmaceutical companies for free.. or The crowd is large; the food is good; and the entire event has an excitement associated with doing something good for a cause. Join us at the Duck Classic Banquet Thursday, Dec. 7th. Doors open at 5pm!

ShareHope: a free program for those whose lives are touched by the tragic death of a baby through pregnancy loss, stillbirth or in the first few months of life. Kim Provost, Director of Events NEA Baptist Charitable Foundation

15th Anniversary | Dec. 7-8

PMS 136

CMYK 0, 31, 87, 0

Largest Waterfowling Fundraiser in Arkansas - Charity Banquet & Duck Hunt Arkansas State University Convocation Center, Jonesboro, AR Premier hunting locations throughout Northeast Arkansas








Visit our website for details on this exciting event

NEA Baptist - the only hospital in Arkansas to achieve both

Celebrating our new Healthgrades designations! NEA Baptist is the only hospital in the state to achieve both the Outstanding Patient Experience Award™ and the Patient Safety Excellence Award™ putting us in the top 3% of hospitals in the nation!

Get Better.

NEA Health 2017  

NEA Health, established in 2005, is a publication of free health information and articles written by NEA Baptist physicians for our communit...

NEA Health 2017  

NEA Health, established in 2005, is a publication of free health information and articles written by NEA Baptist physicians for our communit...