July/August 2022 Arkansas Medical News

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July/August December 2022 2009 >> >> $5 $5

Easing the Toll of PTSD for Military Veterans


Central Arkansas Veterans Health Care System one of only 10 VA facilities offering the SGB procedure By LYNNE JETER

Neurosurgeon Tim Maryanov Works to Resolve Pain Without Opiates or Major Surgery Releasing entrapped nerves often keeps patients out of the OR. Board Certified Neurosurgeon Tim Maryanov, MD, Fort Neuro, Fort Smith, has a focus on using noninvasive techniques to discover and resolve the cause of pain so people can live fulfilling lives without taking medicine that is potentially addictive.

An intricate shot in the neck has proven to be a much needed “reset” for military veterans suffering from the debilitating symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Veterans who have received the treatment – Stellate Ganglion Block (SGB) – call it “a godsend,” “a gamechanger,” with one confessing after learning about the procedure: “I’m bawling. Hope came back.” Another confessed: “I had nothing to lose” by trying it. Used for decades to treat chronic pain, SGB has only recently been tried (CONTINUED ON PAGE 4)

The Business of Building Better Health

“What I often find is that chronic pain patients have abnormalities in the autonomic part of the nervous system,” Maryanov said. “For example, sweat secreted from the bottom of the feet is part of the autonomic system, and we can draw inferences from that to understand the physiological and psychological symptoms of patients’ chronic pain symptoms.” Article on page 2

Please find more local Arkansas healthcare news beginning on page 5.

Urologist Nirmal Kilambi is bringing integrative care and novel therapies to patients in Northwest Arkansas By MELANIE KILGORE-HILL

Nirmal Kilambi





Nirmal K. Kilambi, MD, FACS, is changing the landscape of integrative healthcare in Northwest Arkansas - a place the board-certified urologist has called home since birth.

Finding his place

A native of Fayetteville, Kilambi graduated from Fayetteville High School before receiving his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas. After earning his medical degree from the University of Arkansas for Medical


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Neurosurgeon Tim Maryanov Works to Resolve Pain Without Opiates or Major Surgery Releasing entrapped nerves often keeps patients out of the OR. By BECKY GILLETTE

Board Certified Neurosurgeon Tim Maryanov, MD, Fort Neuro, Fort Smith, has a focus on using non-invasive techniques to discover and resolve the cause of pain so people can live fulfilling lives without taking medicine that is potentially addictive. “What I often find is that chronic pain patients have abnormalities in the autonomic part of the nervous system,” Maryanov said. “For example, sweat secreted from the bottom of the feet is part of the autonomic system, and we can draw inferences from that to understand the physiological and psychological symptoms of patients’ chronic pain symptoms.” He has in house x-rays and sends out for CT scans or MRIs, but he prefers, when possible, to use ultrasound to evaluate muscles, tendons and the soft tissue structure. For example, when evaluating knee pain from arthritis, he can see nerves that are being compressed by various muscular and tendon structures. Some of the techniques he uses to release those entrapments include massage balls, movement and various exercises. “I really try to appeal to people who want to treat the cause of their pain, not just cover it up with narcotics,” Maryanov said. “Medicines are not as helpful as finding out where the pain is coming from, and what can be done. I also do nerve-blocking injections guided with ultrasound.” With carpal tunnel syndrome, many patients are older, have lost significant amounts of strength in their hands, and have multiple other medical problems. He can treat carpal tunnel syndrome without surgery using ultrasound and multiple needle punctures to release the entrapments in the nerve. There are no incisions, and he uses anesthetic so the patient doesn’t feel the needles. “I go right to the point of entrapment, and release it,” he said. “Folks are doing this procedure around the world, but I think I am the only one in this area doing it at this time.” As anyone who has ever had chronic pain can attest, to have that relieved is life changing. “It is very rewarding when I explain to someone why they have been having pain symptoms for a long time and am able to resolve that,” Maryanov said. “Some have tried to get it treated before.” Maryanov had a young patient with chronic pain in his right arm along with infections and swelling after an injury. 2



“I figured out the cause of his Complex Regional Pain Syndrome,” said Maryanov, who cured it by stimulating the brachial plexus, a collection of nerves between the neck and shoulder. That patient is now free of pain and is weaning off pain medicines. In another case involving Complex Regional Pain Syndrome of the foot, Maryanov treated it by stimulating lumbar 4 and lumbar 5 nerve roots coming out of the spine. Both advanced procedures were done at an ambulatory surgery center. A common problem in today’s society is neck and shoulder pain from too much time at the computer or other strains. Neck arthritis is common especially with older people. In these cases, he uses ultrasound to find the nerves being entrapped by arthritis and uses nerve-blocking shots and radio frequency ablation. Another patient with spinal stenosis who was more than 80 years old had been on opiates for a long time. Other doctors were reluctant to do anything because of her age and other health conditions, including lymphoedema. Using a minimally invasive procedure, Maryanov inserted the Vertiflex Superion® interspinous spacer in her back to restore the normal space between the vertebrae. He was able to advise her on dietary changes to resolve the lymphoedema, which is nutrition based. After eliminating certain products from her diet, including chocolate, the lymphoedema was resolved and she was able to walk much more freely. “She is a year out and very happy,” he said. Maryanov has some groundbreaking equipment that helps him evaluate patients including WAVi, a brain measurement platform which provides objective information about brain function and cognitive resources. It looks for markers of vascular disease often involved in chronic pain and dementia. “It is a way to evaluate patients that is pretty extraordinary,” he said. “It really helps to treat patients.” He helps people with lifestyle issues, evaluating their diet and physical activities, and then modifying those to manage chronic symptoms. “That is a lot better than medications,” he said. “I try to eliminate medications because of the side effects of pain medicine. I also evaluate what medicines people are on. Sometimes people come in with lists of 20 prescriptions. Some are medicines

Tim Maryanov uses groundbreaking equipment that helps him evaluate patients. started because of the side effects of other medicines. I have found by evaluating the medications and removing those that are no longer necessary, I can slow down or even reverse cognitive decline. “When I find out what is wrong and can help a patient, that makes my day,” Maryanov said. Born in Ukraine, Maryanov was 14 when he moved to the U.S. with his family. While he has no close family members left in the war-torn country, it is difficult to watch the war that has devastated the country and led to millions fleeing as refugees. He dedicates his Facebook videos to Ukraine and has named one of his patientexercises the Ukrainian Twist. Maryanov’s grandfather on his father’s side was a gynecologist and surgeon who died from contracting hepatitis after being incarcerated in a USSR labor camp in Siberia following World War II. Maryanov, who is the proud father of two children, speaks Russian, and learned Spanish while studying a family medicine rotation at University of California, San Diego, where he earned his MD in 2004. “My Spanish-speaking patients really enjoy me speaking Spanish because they often can’t communicate with medical providers,” he said. “Nowadays I try to spend time with my adolescent children and further my

Maryanov and Mooza skills by attending medical and scientific workshops and conferences.” His favorite hobby, scuba diving, has been on hold because of Covid. He was doing some kayaking before he had an accident that totaled his truck. Having made a commitment not to buy another gas-powered vehicle, he is trying to find an electric truck. He is encouraged to see some electric charger stations in Van Buren and Fort Smith, and also has solar power at his home. “I’ve always been an environmentalist, but I realized instead of trying to battle things on a big scale, start by changing the things you do,” he said. His dog, Mooza, goes with him to the office. She isn’t a trained therapy dog, but patients enjoy her company. Maryanov completed a surgical internship and neurosurgical residency from 2004-2011 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill hospitals. arkansasmedicalnews


The Business of Building Better Health, continued from page 1 Sciences (UAMS) in Little Rock, he completed a urology residency at the University of Mississippi in 2001. Kilambi’s love for medicine was driven by his late parents - Indian immigrants whose passion for education continues to inspire the couple’s three sons. His father, zoology professor Raj Kilambi, PhD, was a faculty member in the University of Arkansas’s Department of Biological Sciences for 35 years, while his mother, Jaya, received a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's in counseling at the University of Arkansas, eventually retiring from the University’s David W. Mullins Library. “I knew in elementary school that I wanted to be a doctor,” Kilambi said. “In medical school I wanted a surgical subspecialty, and found urology to be very diverse, from using different camera scopes to performing major cancer surgery such as curing prostate, kidney and bladder cancers,” he said. “Pelvic anatomy is generally a smaller working space full of major vessels providing challenging, and a variety of interesting procedures.” After practicing in Hot Springs, Kilambi returned home in 2007 to join Northwest Arkansas Urology Associates as partner. His numerous local, state and national appointments have included Governing Board Member of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) and official urologist for the Arkansas Razorbacks. Kilambi, who’s been in private practice since 2001, also has served in a variety of positions including Chief of Urology and Chief of Surgery at a number of hospitals during his 20-year career. He is a current board member for the Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation, where he also serves on the Medical Advisory committee. As a private practice physician, Kilambi maintains privileges at seven regional medical facilities including WRMC, Northwest and Mercy Health Systems.

The Process of Developing Services

At Northwest Arkansas Urology Associates, Kilambi oversees strategic planning, clinic operations, financial decision analysis and negotiation efforts, in addition to seeing patients from his Springdale and Rogers offices alongside partners Chad Brekelbaum, MD, Braedon J. Collins, MD, and Jason Hurt, MD, FACOG, FPMRS. The team operates satellite offices in Eureka Springs, Siloam Springs and Grove, Oklahoma. In 2021, Kilambi became the first physician in Arkansas to receive the Surgeon of Excellence designation for GreenLight™ laser therapy, a minimally invasive treatment to remove overgrown prostate tissue. He also has specialized training in the da Vinci® robotic surgery arkansasmedicalnews


system and uses minimally invasive techniques to perform stone surgery through percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL), extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL), and ureteroscopy. Kilambi offers Coloplast and Boston Scientific penile implants and treats urinary incontinence in women through a wide range of procedures, including the Obtryx™ sling system. He uses complex urodynamics diagnostically for complex urinary incontinence to specifically address the patient’s pathology. He utilizes neuromodulation surgery using both Medtronics InterStim™ and the Axonics™ systems. “Urology is an ever-changing field, and years ago we never knew robotics would impact it so much,” he said, citing robotics as the industry’s most significant advancement in decades. “Urologists were among the first to use robotics and were early implementers in using the minimally invasive technique for complex surgeries,” he said. “When we get into the deep, bony pelvis, especially for prostate cancer surgery, the technology is far superior to open surgery, and patients typically are released from the hospital the next day.” A pioneer for medical advances, Kilambi, along with his partners, was among the first in the state to create a pelvic health clinic for patients suffering from incontinence, pelvic floor issues, pelvic pain, urinary tract infections and sexual dysfunction.

Finding Better Options and Outcomes

Kilambi’s multimodal, integrative approach to patient health fueled his determination to provide more options – and better outcomes – for urology patients. In 2019, he launched Arkansas Biomechanics & Rehabilitation – a product of his interest in musculoskeletal mobility, fitness, and health and wellness. “So many patients complain that their backs hurt, and assume it’s related to kidney stones,” he explained. “Too often we as urologists often fail to address their musculoskeletal needs.” Under the care of his business partner, chiropractor Mitchell Gibson, DC, patients perform postural corrective exercises to build a foundation and utilize Functional Movement Systems to fine tune exercises specific to the individual for strength and stability. “Good doctors integrate all disease processes, and back and axial skeletal movement is key to living a healthy life,” Kilambi said. Arkansas Biomechanics and Rehabilitation also offers pelvic floor therapy with physical therapist Kelly Cross, PT, DPT, CAPP. Kilambi talks to patients, including men with erectile dysfunction and women with pelvic floor problems, about

the benefits of healthy diets – combined with therapy – to improve overall health. “Unless they understand how it’s all connected they can’t better themselves, and we as physicians do them a disservice if we don’t bring those things up,” he said.

A Growing Community

As a business owner and physician, Kilambi is committed to delivering holistic, innovative services to patients in Northwest Arkansas. “I enjoy doing a variety of things, both in business and in medicine,” he said. “Creating a business is a processdriven endeavor, but once you put in the

hard work it just starts coming together. Successful leadership includes competence, kindness and respect. Giving employees the tools to be successful creates a true team atmosphere and loyalty to the cause and organization.” As a husband and a father of three, Kilambi still enjoys life in his hometown, where the medical community continues to grow exponentially. “Northwest Arkansas offers an exceptional quality of life, and I’m thankful that at Northwest Arkansas Urology Associates patients can receive superior and cutting-edge urological treatment,” he said.





Little Rock n Bryant n Conway n Fayetteville n Fort Smith n 800-342-5541 Hot Springs n Mountain Home n North Little Rock n Pine Bluff n Russellville

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Easing the Toll of PTSD for Military Veterans, continued from page 1 for PTSD on veterans. Popularity of the treatment gained ground after the VA realized its impact on countering suicide, which affects roughly 20 veterans a day and has become “an epidemic.” However, only 10 VA clinics across the U.S. offer the breakthrough procedure that has a Stellate Institute published success rate of 85 percent. “This treatment’s moving at a snail's pace,” said Lance Price, a veteran, and director of the Florida chapter For the Love of a Veteran, Inc. “The why is somewhat unclear but if we had to guess, it would be because SGB isn’t considered an established first-line treatment for PTSD at this time because the evidence is not conclusive.” The procedure is typically completed in the pain clinic of a VA facility and may require a referral from psychiatry. Because Florida doesn’t have a VA center for SGB treatment, For the Love of a Veteran refers veterans to Richard Gayle, MD, founder of Lake Nona Medical Arts, specializing in pain management and regenerative medicine. Also, four Stella Centers throughout Florida offer the treatment. Veterans who cannot find a venue or afford the treatment typically “continue to use standard care, which consists of mental health services and pharmacological therapy,” explained Gayle. Financially strapped veterans may receive assistance via For the Love of a Veteran, which covers the medical costs for SGB shots “because the VA is very limited and most insurance won’t cover this life changing procedure,” noted Price. “We also cover travel and lodging cost if needed.” Price, who received SGB treatment in October 2021, said “my flashbacks, night terrors, insomnia … have dramatically decreased. The SGB has given me a quality of life that I’ve not had since 2007.” Post-injection, Price slept “the longest … 15 hours. I woke up refreshed like a cloud had been lifted or I literally was rebooted. If nothing else, the SGB treatment has given me the opportunity to get closer to my friends and family without constantly thinking about the worst-case scenario.” Price hasn’t needed a second SGB shot, which many veterans do. SGB is not perceived as a miracle drug and may not work for all patients, many of whom may need 4



my flashbacks, night terrors, insomnia … have dramatically decreased. The SGB has given me a quality of life that I’ve not had since 2007. — Lance Price, Veteran, Director, For The Love Of A Veteran, Inc.

multiple shots to receive continuing benefits. Shay Seaborne, CPTSD, has had five SGB procedures. “I find great relief with each,” he said. “Unfortunately, my trauma is severe and complex, so the relief only lasts a couple of weeks. But each (shot) builds on the last, so I hope this will help me reclaim my nervous system.”

Otherwise, A Living Nightmare

During a recent Fourth of July celebration, a veteran’s mother heard “a big homemade boom go off.” Her son “jumped up and took off running like he had a 100-pound backpack,” she said. “I found him in the house crouched down in a corner. He was back in war. I cried seeing my son in that place in his head. I can’t wait to see him with the shot.” After years of continuous war, the number of veterans suffering from PTSD has reached an all-time high. Sgt. First Class Jonathan Zehring, who spent 455 days as part of the American offensive in the Kunar province of eastern Afghanistan, was asked, as part of therapy, to share his worst combat memories on paper. “They wanted me to read it 20 times before I went to bed,” he told 60 Minutes. “And I did it one or two days (then) crinkled the piece of paper and threw it away. I’m like, ‘Why am I doing this? I watched people I know die.’ Like, that’s always gonna bother me.” Zehring saw zero improvement through talk therapy but was an improved man after SGB treatment. A similar situation was going on with Marine Sgt. Henry Coto, who spent months patrolling war-torn

Iraqi towns, and self-medicated postmilitary with alcohol and marijuana. He told 60 Minutes he’d tried a dozen medications that didn’t help. “I thought if I kept going the way I was going, there’s only two ways that’s gonna end: dead or in jail.” After Coto received two SGB shots, his brother observed: “Dude, I don’t know what they did, but it’s amazing.” Coto couldn’t stop smiling. Sean Mulvaney, MD, who administers SGB treatment, said: “These people … wrote a blank check to their nation that included their life. As citizens, we need to help them when they come home, when they’re broken.”

More Research Needed

Researchers are toiling to pinpoint changes in the brain associated with PTSD. The newest theory is based on research that shows PTSD isn’t only psychological. Repeated exposure to bomb blasts and the protracted stress of hazardous redeployments may cause physical changes to the brain, making it hyperactive, according to Michael Alkire, MD, general anesthesiologist at UCI Medical Center in California. He noted that post-treatment, four of five veterans reported relief from depression and suicidal thoughts. “There are very few things in medicine that work that quickly,” he marveled. Price pointed out “more conclusive studies need to be done to prove what this treatment is truly capable of doing.” He encourages veterans to “never stop fighting” for the lifechanging treatment just as diligently as they never stopped defending the U.S.

“If one treatment doesn’t work, find another,” he urged. “The answers are out there for everyone to have a successful and fulfilling life. Never give up.” Repeated calls to VA Media Relations to learn about plans for expansion of the SGB program to treat veterans with PTSD and how the referral system works were unreturned by press time.

VA Facilities Treating PTSD with SGB: ARKANSAS: • Central Arkansas Veterans Health Care System CALIFORNIA: • VA Long Beach Health Care System • Northern CA Health Care System GEORGIA: • Atlanta VA Health Care System HAWAII: • VA Pacific Islands Health Care System INDIANA: • Northern Indiana Health Care System MARYLAND: • Maryland Health Care System MINNESOTA: • VA Minneapolis Health Care VIRGINIA: • VA Richmond Healthcare Center WEST VIRGINIA: • VA Martinsburg Health Care



GrandRounds Baptist Health Announces Changes to Hospital Leadership LITTLE ROCK – Baptist Health recently appointed new leadership at its hospitals in Little Rock, North Little Rock, Malvern and Arkadelphia: • Mike Perkins is now president of Baptist Health Medical Center-Little Rock. He has additional oversight for Baptist Health Rehabilitation Institute Mike Perkins (BHRI), Baptist Health Extended Care Hospital (BHECH) and Baptist Health College Little Rock. Since joining Baptist Health more than 30 years ago, Perkins has served in various titles including president of Baptist Health Medical Center-North Little Rock; vice president and administrator of BHRI; and vice president and administrator of BHECH. • Cody Walker is now president of BHMC-North Little Rock. Walker previously served as vice president of hospital operations at BHMC-Little Rock. He Cody Walker came to Baptist Health in 2020 from Brookwood Baptist Health in Birmingham, Alabama, where he held the titles of market administrator, interim COO and associate administrator. • Greg Crain now serves as president of the Central Region for Baptist Health, with oversight of the health care system’s hospitals in Little Rock, North Little Rock and Conway. Greg Crain Crain previously served for 10 years as president of BHMC-Little Rock. While president, he also had additional responsibilities for BHRI, BHECH and Baptist Health College Little Rock. During his more than 25 years at Baptist Health, Crain also served as vice president of patient services at BHMC-Little Rock and BHRI, and as assistant vice president of BHRI. • Jay Quebedeaux is now president of Baptist Health Medical CenterArkadelphia and Baptist Health Medical CenterJay Quebedeaux Hot Spring County. Quebedeaux replaced Tony Hardage following his retirement. Quebedeaux comes to Baptist Health from Mena Regional Health System, where he served as CEO for seven years. • Mackenzie Clyburn has joined BHMC-Little Rock as associate vice Mackenzie president of hospital Clyburn



operations. Clyburn most recently worked as division administrator for general, geriatric and hospital medicine at the University of Kansas Health System in Kansas City, Kansas.

CARTI Foundation Announces New Board Members for FY23 LITTLE ROCK – The CARTI Foundation announces the appointment of four new members to its Board of Directors for fiscal year 2023. Board terms begin on July 1 and the members foster, support and encourage the activities and purposes of CARTI and advance its mission to provide health care services to cancer patients. New members include: • Jennifer Ralston-Day • Jason Chacko • Manoj Patel • Greg Williams Jennifer Ralston-Day is the current president of the CARTI Auxiliary and cochair of Festival of Trees. She is a past Foundation board member and has been involved with CARTI for more than 15 years. Day is also actively involved with the Ralston Family Foundation which raises money for college golfers. Day says her family connection to cancer is what drives her passion for CARTI. “In 1988, my Nanny was treated at CARTI. As an 18 year old, I wasn’t able to help, but said that someday I would help others at CARTI,” shared Ralston-Day. “Since then, my other grandmother and dad were treated at CARTI.” Jason Chacko is a certified financial planner and a Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist with Morgan Stanley Wealth Management. His volunteer work ranges from Camp Aldersgate and the Boy Scouts of America to leadership positions with Rotary Club of Little Rock and the Catholic High School for Boys Foundation. Manoj Patel is known for his work designing and rebuilding hospitality industry businesses. He is president of several businesses including Setu Inc., Vishnu Inc., Setu Hospitality Inc. and Sita Ram Associates. He is a member of the North Little Rock Advertising and Promotion Commission, has volunteered for the Race for the Cure, Parkinson Foundation events, the Little Rock Marathon, Friends of India as well as other charities over the past 25 years. Patel has had several friends and relatives who have received treatment at CARTI and his desire to serve is steeped in the words of wisdom passed down from his father that says, “If we continuously give, we will continuously have.” Greg Williams is the Board Chairman of Nabholz Construction Services in Conway. He is an active volunteer and board member with the Arkansas Chamber of Commerce, St. Joseph’s

Church in Conway and the Jonesboro Unlimited Board. Nabholz Construction has a long affiliation with CARTI and Williams joins the board as a grateful patient. The four new members join Paul Benham, III, Chair, J. Scott Schallhorn, Vice-Chair, Ginger Beebe*, Traci Braunfisch, Pam Brown Courtney, Misti Coker, Kyle Drown, Kelley Erstine, Adam Head, Dennis Jungmeyer, Kyle King, Grace Raja, M.D., Cindy VanVeckhoven, Sheila Vaught, Terry Vick, Mark V. Williamson* and Jan Zimmerman.

Provider Joins Conway Regional Gastroenterology Center CONWAY – Marissa Plata, an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN), has joined the Conway Regional Gastroenterology Center. She joins Martin Moix, MD, Owen Maat, Marissa Plata MD, Lindsey Sierra, APRN, Brandy Eason, APRN, and Sarah Atkins, APRN. Plata holds a Master of Science in Nursing degree from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and achieved a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the Eleanor Mann School of Nursing at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. She has worked in nursing at UAMS and at Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville.

“It is an honor to be able to practice alongside the talented medical staff at the Conway Regional GI Center,” said Plata. “I’m especially thankful that Conway Regional has given me this unique opportunity to serve the community.” “We are happy to welcome Marissa to our growing gastroenterology team at Conway Regional,” said Rebekah Fincher, chief administrative officer. “We are committed to providing comprehensive GI services to the communities we serve, and Marissa’s addition will help us ensure patients receive the preventative care and treatment they need right here in Conway.” The Conway Regional Gastroenterology Center offers a variety of innovative, minimally invasive endoscopic surgical options to patients throughout north Central Arkansas. Interventional GI specialists treat diseases of the digestive tract including esophagus, stomach, colon, small intestine, pancreas, gallbladder, and liver. The Conway Regional Gastroenterology Center is located at 2200 Ada Ave., Suite 201.For more information, call 501-852-1360.

Boehm Promoted to Chief Nursing Officer HARRISON - North Arkansas Regional Medical Center (NARMC) is proud to announce that Donna Boehm has been promoted to Chief Nursing Officer. continued on page 6

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GrandRounds In her role as Chief Nursing Officer, Donna will be a member of the executive team and will support and facilitate an interdisciplinary team approach to the overall delivery of care to patients, families, and the community. She will lead quality, safety and innovation initiatives Donna Boehm in partnership with the Medical Staff Executive Committee and promote the vision of and the advancement of the profession of nursing at NARMC. Donna has been employed with North Arkansas Regional Medical Center since 1992. She left NARMC for a period of time in 2008-09 to expand her leadership skills through travel nursing and returned in 2009 as a Staff Nurse in the Intensive Care Unit. Donna has performed in a variety of capacities of nursing and has

Mayo Clinic, Mercy Collaborate to Transform Patient Care Globally

served in the role as the Director of Nursing since 2016. She resides in Harrison and has three sons, Tyler, Morgan and Jason. President and CEO, Sammie Cribbs, said, “Donna has done a tremendous job in leading the teams of nurse managers and improving relationships to enhance the nursing care. We are honored to have an individual who has been part of NARMC’s growth to accept this role with such excitement for the next adventure.” Donna is a highly competent Registered Nurse with 30 years’ experience in orthopedics, pediatrics, urology, medical-surgical including 3 years ICU experience. She graduated from North Arkansas College in 1995 with an Associate Degree in Nursing and then in 2017 from Arkansas State University in Jonesboro with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Donna utilizes a multidisciplinary, collaborative approach to drive quality of care and performance

excellence to achieve operational and clinical success. She has provided nursing services during multiple mission trips to Mexico over the course of 5 years and also serves as a Volunteer Board Member of the Office of Emergency Medicine. “I have been a part of NARMC and this community for 30 years. NARMC is a family to me, it’s where I grew up as a nurse. For me, nursing is a passion and I love to share that with other nurses and be a part of their growth in this profession. Nursing has changed significantly over the last 30 years and especially the last two years through the pandemic. I am proud of what NARMC as a team has done and it’s a privilege to be a part of what we have planned for the future. Quality care, consciously improving the patient experience and a culture of highly experienced and passionate nurses is what we strive for and I’m proud to be a part of this team,” said Donna.

ROCHESTER, Minn. – A 10-year collaboration agreement between Mayo Clinic and Mercy— a first-ofits-kind alliance between two large health care systems — will use the most current data science and years of deidentified patient outcomes to find diseases earlier and start patients on paths to better health more quickly. Mercy has Northwest Arkansas hospitals in Rogers, Fort Smith, Berryville and Ozark. “This unique collaboration will eliminate the barriers to innovation in health care by bringing together data and human expertise through a new way of working together,” says John Halamka, MD, an emergency medicine physician and president of Mayo Clinic Platform. “By working together, we will be able to find the best paths for treatment and diagnosis to benefit patients everywhere. Our union has the potential to transform medicine worldwide.” Mayo and Mercy were early adopters of integrated electronic health records, and over more than a decade have collected a vast amount of treatment outcomes and clinical data. Until recently, the information was too unstructured and complex to analyze. With the combination of privacy-protected, cloud-based technology architecture, and the growth of artificial intelligence and machine learning, this aggregated clinical deidentified data generates patterns to pinpoint disease earlier and identify best treatment options. “We have a unique opportunity today to transform mountains of clinical experience into actionable information that optimizes patient care,” says John Mohart, MD, a cardiologist and president of Mercy communities, leading operations for all Mercy hospitals. “This gives physicians, providers and operational leaders critical information that can ensure patients receive the right treatment at the right time based on millions of previous patient outcomes, while simultaneously improving operational efficiencies and lowering costs. We believe bringing technology and data science to the bedside can provide better patient care, shorter hospital stays and overall better health for people everywhere.” The collaboration’s success rests on each entity sharing its strengths. Mayo’s expertise in highly complex care and extensive investment in data science platforms together with Mercy’s two centuries of innovative care delivery in diverse communities and vast clinical information, including more than 500 million deidentified patient encounters, will provide the opportunity to develop high-value solutions and algorithms leading to more optimal care for patients. Additionally, Mercy’s and Mayo’s different populations and geographic locations will improve accuracy, reduce model bias and create more diverse, and therefore stronger, treatment recommendations for patients. The Mayo and Mercy alliance will initially focus on patient outcomes: Information collaboration — All data are deidentified and secured in a distributed data network that enables Mayo and Mercy to work with an extensive set of outcomes without extracting or transferring data between the organizations. Each health care system will retain control over its deidentified outcomes throughout the process. The information will help scientists analyze patterns of effective disease treatment and, more importantly, disease prevention in new ways based upon longitudinal data review over an extended period of time. Solution and algorithm development and validation — The resulting algorithms will provide proven treatment paths based on years of patient outcomes, representing the next generation of proactive and predictive medicine that can be used by care providers around the world to access best practices in medical care. “With Mayo and Mercy combining efforts, we can speed prediction and diagnosis, and provide better patient care, experience and outcomes, while ultimately saving more lives,” says Steve Mackin, Mercy’s president and chief executive officer. “We also hope to innovate together in other patient-focused areas, including precision medicine, transplant care, complex cancer, cardiovascular, neuroscience and much more. Together, we have the opportunity to do something for the greater good, be proactive and change health care for patients everywhere.”




Dr. Richard Chastain Joins CHI St. Vincent Primary Care Clinic in Hot Springs HOT SPRINGS — CHI St. Vincent announced that Dr. Richard Chastain has joined the team of leading physicians at the CHI St. Vincent Primary Care Clinic in Hot Springs. Dr. Chastain will begin seeing patients on July 18 at the clinic located at 1 Mercy Lane, Suite 506. After attending medical school at American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine in St. Richard Chastain Maarten, Netherlands, Dr. Chastain completed his residency in family medicine at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Northwest Regional Campus in Fayetteville. He is certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and previously served

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GrandRounds as a family medicine physician at the Baptist Health Family Clinic in Malvern. The team of providers at the CHI St. Vincent Primary Care Clinic cares for adults and children, including wellness checks and preventative medicine, helps manage chronic conditions, such as diabetes and helps patients coordinate care between specialists. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Chastain, call: 501.662.6500.

UAMS Health Specialty Center to Open In Premier Medical Plaza in Early 2023 LITTLE ROCK — The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) is moving a complement of specialty services to Premier Medical Plaza at 10915 Rodney Parham Road in west Little Rock. UAMS plans to open the facility in early 2023. The UAMS Health Specialty Center will house an Ambulatory Surgery, Interventional Radiology and Advanced Imaging Center, as well as a Urology Clinic. “We are excited to be moving some of our services to Premier Medical Plaza in west Little Rock,” said Cam Patterson, M.D., MBA, UAMS chancellor and CEO of UAMS Health. “This agreement allows us to expand our services in a convenient location that is easily accessible for our patients because of its proximity to public transportation and its ample parking.” UAMS is leasing 32,000 square feet of space from Moses Tucker Partners and will join several medical providers in the state-of-the-art plaza. Between UAMS, Premier Gastroenterology Associates, Baptist Health and Natural State Laboratories, the medical facility is 100% leased. Premier Medical Plaza was redeveloped by Premier Gastroenterology Associates and Moses Tucker Partners in 2019. The $50 million adaptive reuse development turned the former K-Mart store into a first-class medical facility. “The UAMS lease, and their long-term commitment to Premier Medical Plaza, is the culmination of a thrilling, collaborative journey with Premier Gastroenterology Associates,” said Chris Moses, principal, president and CEO at Moses Tucker Partners. “Our involvement with such a transformative redevelopment project is extremely gratifying.” “There is an ongoing trend in the medical industry toward convenience, with patients seeking health care in medical office and outpatient surgery settings close to home. As the health care industry continues to grow, we are incredibly excited to see the synergies evolve at Premier Medical Plaza,” said Todd Greer, CEO at Premier Gastroenterology Associates. The general contractor will be Clark Contractors of Little Rock, WER



Architects/Planners of Little Rock will provide architectural services, and financing for the project will be provided by First Security Bank of Searcy.

Sen Sheng, MD, PhD, Joins Washington Regional J.B. Hunt Transport Services Neuroscience Institute FAYETTEVILLE — Sen Sheng, MD, PhD, recently joined the Washington Regional J.B. Hunt Transport Services Neuroscience Institute, where he provides acute care for hospitalized patients with stroke, seizures and other neurologic issues, including patients who require acute electroencephalogram (EEG) monitoring for diagnoSen Sheng sis and treatment. Sheng also sees patients at Washington Regional Neurology Clinic with a focus on treating epilepsy. He earned his medical degree and doctorate in neuroscience from Peking University Health Science Center in Beijing, China and completed a neurology residency at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. He recently completed a fellowship in clinical neurophysiology with an emphasis on EEG, epilepsy and electromyography at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Presbyterian.

William C. Culp, MD, Pledges $500,000 to UAMS to Establish Interventional Radiology Professorship LITTLE ROCK — William C. “Bill” Culp, MD, made a $500,000 commitment to establish the Dr. William Culp Endowed Professorship in Interventional Radiology in the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) College of Medicine’s Department of Radiology. Culp is a retired professor of radiology, surgery and neurology, who served as vice chair for radiology research in the UAMS Department of Radiology. He has many years of clinical experience, developing new stroke therapies as well as studying stroke treatments, including interventional radiology. “Dr. Culp devoted William "Bill" his expertise, energy Culp and resources to finding new treatments for stroke and advancing the field of interventional radiology during his two decades on our faculty,” said Susan S. Smyth, MD, PhD, executive vice chancellor of UAMS and dean of the College of Medicine. “He is the epitome of a visionary and forward-thinking scientist, clinician and educator, and his gift will support this important area of research for many decades to come.”

White River Health System Becomes White River Health BATESVILLE — Gary Paxson, White River Health System (WRHS) President and CEO, is excited to announce White River Health System is now White River Health. With the new name, White River Health (WRH) is introducing a new brand image, logo, and tagline. Each of which were carefully designed to support the mission, vision, and values of the organization. “The past two years have been very difficult with the pandemic and staff shortages,” says Gary Paxson. “With the help of our dedicated employees, WRH has grown even stronger and, during this time, reaffirmed our commitment to the health of our communities. We believe this transition is indicative of this achievement and the bright future of the organization. We have grown in our culture and service, and the rebranding serves as a symbol to remind us, and to communicate to our communities, of our ongoing commitment to a culture of service and exceptional healthcare.” What is the meaning behind the rebranding design decision? It is important to note that businesses should refresh their branding image every five years. The health system used the same logo and tagline for nearly two decades. However, the decision to make this change earnestly and authentically had to be at a time when the culture was right. While dropping system from the name is a small change, it allows the healthcare organization to focus on what we do – Health. The W in the new logo represents the White River and is a tribute to the organization’s history, upon further investigation, you can see two hearts coming together. The two hearts overlap to show caring and connection. The colors are refreshing, natural colors that flow together like the river: Blue represents calm, comfort, trust, and commitment and green represents health, growth, and energy. The new tagline – Caring Beyond Healthcare – communicates what WRH represents and their purpose. It means caring extends beyond the walls of the hospital and into the communities, making this region a healthier place. It also means maintaining an exceptional level of caring within the walls of our facilities by delivering lifelong, next-level care to patients. Lastly, it means providing a warm, empowering, culture for the employees. WRH aims to be more than medicine, building brighter futures for North Central Arkansas. WRH remains an independent, not-for-profit healthcare system serving residents throughout North Central Arkansas. The system includes hospitals, outpatient facilities, primary care and specialty physician office practices, and Senior Life Centers. WRH is a member of the Premier Alliance, the American Hospital Association, and the Arkansas Hospital Association and licensed by the Arkansas Department of Health.




GrandRounds “After my wonderful experience in interventional radiology for many years, it is my desire to share this subspecialty with others at UAMS,” said Culp. “The critical essence of this was the study, discovery, invention and application of these steps to clinical care — caring for the human beings of our community.” The gift will support research in interventional or neuro-interventional radiology, with the goal of contributing to the publication of research and the development of new techniques and devices. “My own research and general academic time were most productive when two days a week or even more were protected and used for research,” said Culp. “By supporting the academic side of a professor’s time and adding recognition to research efforts, I hope my donation enhances the appointed professor’s ability to focus on research and build a bridge to innovation — the key to what I have loved in this specialty.” Culp is a 1967 graduate of the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine in Oklahoma City. He completed his residency in diagnostic radiology at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston and continued his training with a fellowship in interventional radiology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha. Before joining the UAMS faculty in 2001, he practiced in Fort Smith, Arkansas, as well as at the University of Florida in Gainesville, and the University of Nebraska in Omaha. In 2016, Culp became the first person to hold the Jonathan S. Fitch Distinguished Chair in Stroke and Neurocritical Care. He retired from practice in 2021. “We are thankful and grateful for Dr. Culp’s continued devotion to the Department of Radiology,” said Arabinda K. Choudhary, MD, MBA, chair of the department in the UAMS College of Medicine. “This endowed professorship will be instrumental in advancing the department’s research efforts and will help innovate new practices for clinical care.”

Scott Fleck, MD, Joins Washington Regional Radiologists FAYETTEVILLE — Scott Fleck, MD, recently joined Washington Regional as an interventional radiologist. Interventional radiology uses minimally invasive, image-guided procedures to diagnose and treat diseases. Dr. Fleck earned his medical degree from the University of Scott Fleck Arkansas for Medical Sciences where he also completed a residency in integrated interventional and diagnostic radiology.




New St. Bernards Five Rivers Pain Management’ Helps Patients Manage Chronic Pain JONESBORO – St. Bernards Five Rivers Medical Center will offer patients new pain management options providing Northeast Arkansas residents with non-opioid based treatment options to manage chronic pain. St. Bernards Five Rivers Pain Management will use more than 13 research-based pain management strategies to help patients experiencing a variety of chronic pains, including joint, lumbar, thoracic, cervical and nerve pain as well as migraines. St. Bernards Five Rivers Medical Center Administrator Randy Barymon said St. Bernards saw a need to provide these services close to home. “For so many regional residents, pain is part of their daily lives,” Barymon said. “They cannot drive long distances to get help, so we saw an opportunity to meet their needs here. St. Bernards Five Rivers Pain Management employs safe and effective treatments to relieve pain. We believe this approach can change a person’s quality of life without the risks of taking, purchasing and storing opiatebased prescription medications.” St. Bernards Five Rivers Pain Management operates in partnership with Rural Health Pain Management, LLC. The Center is staffed by two providers with board certifications in Pain Management and Nurse Anesthesia. Combined, the providers have more than two decades working in pain management and four decades working in anesthesia. St. Bernards Five Rivers Pain Management is housed inside St. Bernards Five Rivers Medical Center, located at 2801 Medical Center Drive in Pocahontas. Normal operating hours will be Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information or to make appointment requests, visit https://www.stbernards.info/locations/ st-bernards-five-rivers-pain-management

Third Baptist Health Urgent Care Location Now Open in Fort Smith FORT SMITH – Baptist Health Urgent Care has opened a new center in Fort Smith-Northside on Rogers Avenue, across from Walgreens. “Whether it’s a minor injury, vaccination, sports physicals or other wellness care, it’s important for families to have a high-quality health care option that is comprehensive and affordable,” said Mike Dupuis, Vice President of Urgent Team Family of Urgent Care & Walk-in Centers. “Urgent care services are a fast, cost-effective option to replace the emergency room for non-life-threatening issues or waiting to get an appointment with your physician.

(Left to Right) Drs. Dylan Carpenter; Wesley Greer; Kevin Rose, Chairman of White River Health Board of Directors; Mr. Gary Paxson, President and CEO of White River Health; Mayor Rick Elumbaugh, and Drs. Jeff Angel and J.D. Allen.

Orthopaedic Clinic Holds Groundbreaking Ceremony BATESVILLE – White River Health (WRH) hosted a Groundbreaking Ceremony for a new facility dedicated to continuing orthopaedic excellence at White River Health Orthopaedic & Sports Medicine, previously known as WRMC Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Clinic. The new facility is being constructed on the White River Medical Center campus on what is currently the walking track. Site preparation work is scheduled to begin immediately, and construction is expected to be completed in the spring of 2023. The general contractor, Wil-Bry Construction plans to use Sidney Street to access the construction site, minimizing the disruption to drivers on Harrison Street. The new orthopaedic facility will be 15,000 square feet to comfortably meet the needs of patients and space to allow providers and their teams to work more effectively. The practices of Drs. J.D. Allen, Jeff Angel, Dylan Carpenter, and Wesley Greer will be relocated to the new facility.

When an illness or injury can’t wait, Baptist Health Urgent Care’s 12 locations offer family care, urgent care and occupational health services seven days a week with extended hours. For added convenience, walk-ins are welcome, or patients can plan a same or next day visit online with Hold My Spot® or reserve a Telemedicine visit. With onsite X-ray and lab tests, Baptist Health Urgent Care can treat patients with medical needs, such as: All of the 12 Baptist Health Urgent Care centers assist with a variety of nonlife-threatening health conditions and injuries. The centers are open seven days a week: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Most insurance plans, including TRICARE and VA, Medicare and Medicaid, as well as cash and credit card are accepted. ARKids requires a physician referral in advance of the visit.

Baptist Health Pediatric Clinic-Conway Welcomes Dr. Ryan Southard CONWAY – Pediatrician Ryan Southard, MD, recently joined the team at Baptist Health Pediatric ClinicConway. A native of Conyers, Georgia, Dr. Southard earned his medical degree from Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) in Charleston, South

Carolina. He completed residency training at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences/Arkansas Children’s Hospital in Little Rock. “My ultimate goal is to incorporate shared decision-making with my patients and their parents or family members whenever possible,” said Dr. Southard. “I love Ryan Southard taking care of pediatric patients because I get to be silly at times and not take myself too seriously.” Dr. Southard is board certified in general pediatrics by the American Board of Pediatrics and is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics. When he’s not seeing patients, Dr. Southard enjoys cooking, hiking, camping, travel and spending time with his wife and two children. Baptist Health Pediatric ClinicConway is located at 625 United Drive, Suite 410, in the Medical Office Building directly behind Baptist Health Medical Center-Conway. The clinic is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. To learn more about Dr. Southard and the services he provides, visit baptist-health.com arkansasmedicalnews