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Winter 2015

Health Beat


Anamosa | Cedar Rapids | Dubuque | Waterloo

DOCTORS DELIVER UNEXPECTED NEWS Couple receives Emergency Room surprise PAGE 6

Care close to home

Collaboration with Mayo Clinic benefits patients PAGE 2

Heart attack

Emergency care at UnityPoint Health hospitals PAGE 4

A path to healing Child Protection Center comforts victims of abuse PAGE 8

Headlines & Happenings

What’s 1


Health clips

Health news you can use.

2 - 3 Care close to home How collaboration with the Mayo Clinic

is helping patients in Cedar Rapids.

4 - 5 Heart attack warning signs

How Finley and Guttenberg hospitals work together to save the lives of heart attack patients.

6 - 7 Doctors deliver unexpected news

Couple receives emergency room surprise.

Join us at the Live Well Health Hub UnityPoint Health is proud to introduce Live Well Health Hub. It’s a website to learn healthy living tips, medical breakthroughs, new services and treatment options from your UnityPoint Health hospital.

Find us at

Read the Real Moms of Eastern Iowa blog The Real Moms of Eastern Iowa follows the day-to-day experiences of Eastern Iowa women and covers anything and everything related to parenting. You’ll also find information about child development, health information and safety tips from our newest contributer, Dr. Marie De Alwis, a UnityPoint Clinic pediatrician.

Follow the blog at

8 - 9 A path to healing

Secure patient messaging

Child Protection Center comforts victims of abuse.


What health screenings do I need?

Secure patient messaging allows you to:


A closer look at preventative care for men and women.

Growing and expanding care in Anamosa

The MyUnityPoint patient portal gives you secure online access to your health information and tools to help manage your health. One of the most powerful aspects of MyUnityPoint is secure patient messaging. • • • • •

Request a medication refill Ask a question about your lab results, symptoms, treatment plan or medications Request an appointment Provide information your care team has requested (such as blood pressure, weight or blood sugar level) Ask non-urgent questions or concerns

An update on Jones Regional Medical Center’s expansion project.


Ask the expert

Visit to learn more about secure patient messaging or ask a member of your clinic’s care team.

How do I make the right choice for cancer care?

Are you on Facebook?


For your health

Timely health and medical news.

Health Beat Vol. 20 No. 2 l Winter 2015 Health Beat magazine is produced by UnityPoint Health.

All UnityPoint Health hospitals are active users of social media and provide health information and tips. While you’re online, please write a review of your most recent hospital stay or visit. We look forward to hearing from you.

On the Cover:

Briggs Beaty photo courtesy of Cara Hocking Photography, Marion, IA.

Connect with us at

P.O. Box 3026 | Cedar Rapids, IA 52406-3026 (319) 369-7395 | 000448a-2 01/15 CS

5 CS

Health Clips Allen named one of 100 Hospitals with Great Heart Programs Allen Hospital’s Heart and Vascular Center has been named one of the 100 Hospitals with Great Heart Programs by Becker’s Hospital Review. The hospitals featured on this list lead the nation in cardiovascular and thoracic health care. Many have pioneered groundbreaking programs, treatments or research and all have received recognition from reputable sources for top-of-the-line patient care.

St. Luke’s one of the nation’s 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals St. Luke’s Hospital was named one of the nation’s 2004 2007 50 Top Cardiovascular 2008 2012 Hospitals® by Truven 2015 Health Analytics. The study, now in its 16th year, singled out 50 hospitals that achieved superior clinical outcomes in this critical area of hospital care. The Truven Health 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals® study evaluates performance in key performance areas: risk-adjusted mortality, risk-adjusted complications, core measures (a group of measures that assess process of care), percentage of coronary bypass patients with internal mammary artery use, 30-day mortality rates, 30-day readmission rates, severity-adjusted average length of stay, and wage- and severity-adjusted average cost.

Learn more about St. Luke’s Heart Care services at

To compile this list, Becker’s Hospital Review analyzed and reviewed data from sources including U.S. News & World Report, Truven Health Analytics, CareChex, the American Nurses Credentialing Center, Blue Distinction Center status for cardiac care and the Society of Thoracic Surgeons to identify hospitals for this prestigious list. The review praised Allen Hospital’s awards and accomplishments. It also recognized its Heart and Vascular Center as the only accredited chest pain center in the Cedar Valley region.

Learn more about Allen Hospital at Finley receives an “A” safety rating Finley Hospital has received an “A” rating in The LeapFrog Group’s 2014 Hospital Safety Score. This report rates hospitals on an “A” through “F” scale based on their ability to prevent errors, injuries and infections. Finley is the only Dubuque hospital to receive an “A” rating. Hospital Safety Score is published by The Leapfrog Group and is based on information collected from a variety of national performance measures, including the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the Centers for

Disease Control and Prevention, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the American Hospital Association’s Annual Survey and Health Information Technology Supplement. According to The Leapfrog Group, Hospital Safety Score aims to educate and encourage consumers to consider safety when selecting a hospital for themselves or their families. Finley Hospital received above average ratings in 13 of 17 areas reported.

Learn more about Finley Hospital at Health Beat | Winter 2015 | 1

Kathy and Scott Franz look at vacation photos after their recent anniversary trip to the Dominican Republic.

Care close to home A unique collaboration between UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids and the Mayo Clinic.

Last spring the hospital announced it was the first health care organization in Iowa to be selected to join the Mayo Clinic Care Network. This means UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids patients have direct access to the Mayo Clinic’s knowledge and expertise when their providers feel additional resources will be helpful to patients. It’s a relationship that’s only available to UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids patients like Scott Franz. The 54-yearold Cedar Rapids man is fighting pancreatic cancer. 2


“My eyes and skin were turning yellow and I wasn’t feeling very good,” recalled Scott. “Initially I went to an urgent care clinic where they ran tests and discovered my bilirubin was high. They scheduled me for more tests the following day at the hospital.” An ultrasound detected a suspicious area in Scott’s abdomen. Doctors discovered a tumor in his bile duct. He had surgery to remove the tumor, followed by chemotherapy and radiation.

“His chemotherapy ended in June,” said Kathy, Scott’s wife. “He had a ET and CT scan and it was clear. There was no cancer detected. We were so relieved. But then Scott went for his first blood work post-cancer in September and we were told his tumor marker was higher than normal. It was devastating news.”

Cancer relapse Scott had a positron emission tomography (PET) scan, and a computerized tomography (CT)

Collaboration with the Mayo Clinic

scan, which showed spots on one lymph node and another on the outside lining of his stomach. A biopsy indicated Scott’s cancer was back. “Despite all of our efforts Scott had a relapse,” said Thomas Warren, MD, Physicians’ Clinic of Iowa (PCI) Hematology & Oncology. “We are hoping aggressive maneuvers can help control his cancer and therefore we utilized the Mayo Clinic Care Network. We knew we needed to throw everything we could at this cancer.” As a UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids patient, Scott is using the Helen G. Nassif Community Cancer Center. The Center is made up of more than 200 doctors including PCI and UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids. This relationship allows PCI doctors to access the Mayo Clinic Care Network. As part of the Mayo Clinic Care Network, patients can receive an eConsult, which allows them to avoid unnecessary travel for answers to complex medical questions. But in a unique case, like Scott’s, the relationship with the Mayo Clinic paves the way for a face-to-face consult with Mayo experts. “Second opinions are great for the patient,” said Dr. Warren. “I am able to consult with Mayo doctors about Scott. They conduct a comprehensive review with me about the patient and in this case, they met with Scott the next day.”

“Everything was set up with Mayo for us,” said Kathy. “It was awesome. While we were in Rochester the entire team of Mayo doctors had a video conference with Dr. Warren. They came up with a treatment plan, which included starting chemotherapy as soon as possible.” “The only glitch was we were hoping to leave for vacation in a few days,” said Scott. “We planned an early 25th wedding anniversary trip. We asked Dr. Warren’s office to start chemotherapy. They set it for the next day. It was so great. It allowed me to start my first treatment in Cedar Rapids before we left for vacation a few days later.”

Keeping patients in Cedar Rapids “The doctors at Mayo told us to complete all of our treatment in Cedar Rapids with Dr. Warren,” said Scott. “We asked if we could have our followup scans in Cedar Rapids and they said, ‘because you are Dr. Warren’s patient you can do it in Cedar Rapids.’ It gives you such peace of mind that the best medical facility in the world trusts my oncologist. It made me feel honored to have Dr. Warren as my doctor.” “The Mayo Clinic doesn’t just provide excellent medical care,” said Dr. Warren. “They provide excellent human care. Scott’s care is an example of patientcentered care that is physician-driven.

“This collaboration with the Mayo Clinic elevates the health care standards for our community.” Thomas Warren, MD Physicians’ Clinic of Iowa (PCI) Hematology & Oncology

This collaboration with the Mayo Clinic elevates the health care standards for our community. It’s about improving care, reducing costs and keeping patients, when possible, in Cedar Rapids. And if they can’t like in Scott’s care, it paves the way for the patient to access care at the Mayo Clinic.” “This relationship with UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids and the Mayo Clinic Care Network is great,” said Scott. “It’s scary when you find yourself in this situation with cancer and to put all of your trust in one person. This relationship with Mayo makes you so much more confident you are getting the best care you possibly can.”

Learn more about the collaboration between UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids and the Mayo Clinic Care Network at Health Beat | Winter 2015 | 3

Heart attack

warning signs “I thought I had strained a muscle in my chest from pulling up carpet,” said Meyer. “I rested and the pain went away. The next morning I started in on the project again and felt the strain in my chest once again and I thought it was so strange because every time I stopped to rest – the sensation went away.”

They tend to present with only shortness of breath and excessive fatigue. Most men present with exertion symptoms, like Michael’s symptoms that go away with rest. In most cases there are usually some warning signs that enable us to identify a heart attack.”

Finally when the pain he felt between his ribs stopped going away Meyer told his wife he needed to go to the Emergency Room (ER). He arrived at Guttenberg Municipal Hospital where the ER team jumped into action and determined he was having a heart attack.

“You see movies and TV shows where someone is clutching their chest,” Meyer said. “That didn’t happen to me at all. It was mildly uncomfortable. It felt like muscle pain in my chest.”

“The presentation of a heart attack is varied,” said Tauseef Khan, MD, UnityPoint Clinic Cardiology at Finley Hospital. “As health care providers we have to pay attention to a wide spectrum of symptoms especially those of women because their symptoms are not always typical.

UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids’ LifeGuard Air Ambulance flew Meyer to Finley Hospital in Dubuque. “When the ER team at Guttenberg Municipal Hospital identifies an individual as needing advanced heart care, they call me directly and we set up an easy process of transferring these cases. By the time LifeGuard arrived with Michael we were standing by to take him to the cath lab immediately.”

The simple act of ripping out old carpeting in Michael Meyer’s home grew exceedingly difficult for the 61-year-old Elkport man last spring.

Acute heart attack “They told me I had a heart attack and they were going to find the blockages and open them,” said Meyer. “They found two blockages. My right coronary artery was 100 percent blocked. Dr. Khan removed the clot and placed a stent, which restored the blood flow to my heart. My left artery was partially blocked and Dr. Khan determined it was best to wait and watch.” “Current guidelines from the American College of Cardiology state in an acute heart attack we should take care of the blockage, which is causing the medical emergency,” said Dr. Khan. “As soon as we removed the blockage his overall health improved. Best care doesn’t always mean to open all of the blockages. Best care for the patient means a combination of lifestyle modifications, appropriate medications, and removal of the blockages. Because of this I decided to give medical therapy a chance.”

“Best care for the patient means a combination of lifestyle modifications, appropriate medications and removal of the blockages.” Tauseef Khan, MD, UnityPoint Clinic Cardiology at Finley Hospital



Emergency care at UnityPoint Health hospitals

Michael Meyer near one of his favorite fishing spots along the Mississippi River in Guttenberg.

Meyer was placed on several medications to control his cholesterol and high blood pressure. He also reduced his caffeine and salt intake and started exercising. Despite all of these steps, his shortness of breath persisted and he noted some chest pain, so he had a second cath procedure with Dr. Khan to open the blockage in the left coronary artery two months later.

Lifestyle changes “Michael has a completely normal functioning heart now,” said Dr. Khan. “When we look at his echocardiogram we can’t tell he has ever had a heart attack. There is no damage to his heart, which is great news. He has made significant changes in his life. Part of my job as a cardiologist is to encourage and coach patients on adopting a healthier lifestyle. This is ultimately how we can overcome this disease. Not by putting

stents in but by making better choices. Michael is doing this.” “I am walking more and watching what I eat,” said Meyer. “Dr. Khan is great. I am grateful for his care and for everyone at Finley and Guttenberg Hospitals. I had really great care at both hospitals. All of the nurses were super friendly. I am thankful to be alive and fishing once again with my wife, Janie.” “Education is so important when it comes to understanding heart attacks,” said Dr. Khan. “People need to recognize the early warning signs and if they are experiencing any of these symptoms to make a great choice like Michael did and get to a hospital.” “They saved my life,” said Meyer. “Now I know what a heart attack feels like and if I experience one again – I know to go to the ER right away.”

Go to a UnityPoint Health hospital ER immediately if you experience signs of a heart attack. Call 911, if you or someone you know has any of these heart attack signs or symptoms: • Discomfort, pressure, squeezing in the chest or pain

• Upper body discomfort • Shortness of breath • Sweating

Health Beat | Winter 2015 |

7 5

Ali Graves, Kateliyn Curtis-Swore, Rebecca Graves and Grace Swore enjoy a meal together in Cedar Rapids.

Scott, Briggs and Misty Beaty in their Cedar Rapids home on Nov. 14, 2014

Doctor delivers

unexpected news

Misty Beaty was set to talk to her family doctor about recent health issues she was experiencing. In particular she was considering surgery to correct carpal tunnel. She had debilitating lower back pain and horrendous heart burn. She needed answers.


“I was only able to stay with Misty in the ER for a short time because I had a chemo appointment scheduled that morning,” recalled Scott. “My plan was to come right back as soon as I was done.” “Misty looked very ill when I saw her,” recalled Tony Carter, DO, St. Luke’s Emergency Room. “She reported intense abdominal pain. When I started her physical exam I knew something wasn’t right.”

Before she could even make it to see her doctor - severe abdominal pain sent her to St. Luke’s Emergency Room (ER).

I wanted to go to an Urgent Care, I told him, ‘no, take me to the ER,’ the pain was that bad.”

“He asked me if I might be pregnant,” recalled Misty. “I told Dr. Carter there was no way I was pregnant.”

“The pain started the day before,” recalled Misty. “By morning the pain was intense and my husband asked if

Misty’s husband, Scott Beaty – also known as Scott Steele, is a former radio DJ. He was diagnosed with stage four colorectal cancer in 2009.

A pregnancy test reported otherwise.


“I delivered the news that Misty was indeed pregnant,” recalled Dr. Carter.

Emergency Room surprise

“ St. Luke’s NICU has nearly 40 years of experience caring for approximately 300 babies each year, The number of patients a provider cares for each year matters.”

Andrew Nordine, MD St. Luke’s NICU medical director

“Misty was genuinely shocked. I remember her saying, ‘you cannot be serious.’ And Scott was ecstatic.” “I remember shortly after learning the baby news I had go to my doctor’s appointment,” said Scott. “It was surreal. I was able to return to St. Luke’s pretty quickly because a small skin infection canceled the chemo treatment.”

Birth Care Center experience “I was thankful to have Scott back,” said Misty. “An ultrasound determined I was 38 weeks along (40 is full-term) and I was quickly moved to St. Luke’s Birth Care Center.” “Everyone was terrific,” said Scott. “They took control right away and put us at ease.” “Every nurse was excellent,” said Misty. “I had one nurse assigned to me the whole time during labor and delivery. Over the years I had heard from friends that if you were going to have a baby – St. Luke’s was a great hospital.”

After about 50 minutes of pushing, Briggs David Beaty was born - weighing in at seven pounds, 14 ounces and 21 inches long.

“Briggs was only in the NICU for two days,” said Scott. “The staff was wonderful and so accommodating. They treated us like family.”

“I spiked a fever during delivery so as a precaution against possible infection Briggs went to the NICU,” said Misty.

“I honestly can say I never thought I was pregnant,” said Misty. “Not once. I only gained about 10 pounds, never had morning sickness or felt Briggs move. In retrospect the back pain and carpal tunnel I had been experiencing was because of the pregnancy. It’s all a blessing.”

NICU experience matters St. Luke’s is the only Advanced Level II Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Center (NICU) in the Cedar Rapids area. The NICU staff cares for babies as young as 23 weeks gestation and very low birth-weight babies. “St. Luke’s NICU has nearly 40 years of experience caring for approximately 300 babies each year,” said Andrew Nordine, MD, St. Luke’s NICU medical director. “The number of patients a provider cares for each year matters. Medical research indicates providers need to see a certain number of NICU babies each year in order to maintain a certain level of expertise and skill.”

“Our time in the NICU gave us a moment to reflect,” said Scott. “We were able to sit back and wonder, ‘what in the world just happened?’ I’ve been in and out of chemotherapy for years so we never thought we would have a baby. It’s a miracle.” “St. Luke’s has always been our hospital,” said Misty. “Dr. Carter in the ER, the team of doctors and nurses in the Birth Care Center and NICU were all amazing and we are grateful for the excellent care we received.”

Editor’s note: Scott Beaty (Steele) passed away on Dec. 18, 2014. He leaves behind his wife Misty, and son, Briggs.

Find out why more expecting parents choose UnityPoint Health to deliver their baby. Schedule your tour of our birth suites today. Cedar Rapids: (319) 369-8129 | Dubuque: (563) 557-2837 | Waterloo: (319) 235-3620 Health Beat | Winter 2015 |


A path to


Every year thousands of children are the victims of abuse. According to a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services 2012 report, an estimated 686,000 children were victims of abuse and neglect nationwide.

To provide a safe place for children who may have been harmed by abuse Allen Hospital in Waterloo opened a Child Protection Center (CPC) in 2010. Since it opened the Center has seen over 1,500 children. It’s a comfortable, private and childfriendly setting for children and their families who are victims of suspected abuse. A team of health care providers, social workers and mental health providers work with law enforcement and the Department of Human Services to investigate, treat and prosecute suspected child abuse cases. All of these individuals coordinate the investigation so efforts are not duplicated and the victim and family are treated respectfully and their time is used efficiently with focus given to the child’s best interest. “At the Center we talk with children in an information gathering way that is developmentally and culturally sensitive,” said Katie Strub, Allen Child Protection Center forensic interviewer. “Having children come to the CPC limits the number of times they will have to tell their story, which can be traumatic for the child. Our interview should be the only thorough interview with the child.”

Community resource

“The Child Protection Center is a great community resource,” said Lt. Brook Heuer, Cedar Falls Police Department. 8


Child Protection Center

“ Our goal is to provide a streamlined service that places the family in the best position for healing.” Julie Ritland, Allen Child Protection Center nurse practitioner

“We use the Center mainly to investigate sexual and physical abuse cases or if a child is a witness to a violent crime. They are well trained and know exactly what to do and have the kid’s best interests at heart. Before the Allen CPC opened we would travel to St. Luke’s Child Protection Center in Cedar Rapids, which presented transportation issues at times. Having the CPC in Waterloo is a great resource for our officers and the families we serve.” The interviews with the child at the CPC are recorded but are not typically used in court. Not all cases go to trial. The interview is just part of the care provided. The CPC also provides medical examinations. “The medical exam serves more than one purpose,” said Julie Ritland, Allen Child Protection Center nurse practitioner. “It gives us a time to reassure the child that their body is normal if that is the case. It also gives us an opportunity to identify and treat any health issues that are discovered.  It is an excellent time to discuss concerns the child may have about themselves. I make sure the child’s health and well-being is where it should be. We find the reassurance we give the child can be very comforting to all involved.”

The medical team at the CPC assists with arranging follow-up appointments with specialists when needed.

Springboard to the future

“Our goal is to provide a streamlined service that places the family in the best position for healing,” said Ritland. “We want to be the springboard to the future for these children and their families. We want them to feel our care and compassion during their time of crisis.” “By the time children are referred to us, something may have already happened and we can’t change that,” said Strub. “However, we believe we can be the beginning of the end and help that child get on the right track to getting better and moving forward.”

Katie Strub, Allen Child Protection Center forensic interviewer

Consider a gift to our Child Protection Centers. Cedar Rapids: (319) 369-7716 Waterloo: (319) 235-3960

Tips for parents to prevent and identify child abuse


with your child, everyday

Listen to your child


the people in your child’s life



your gut

proper terms of anatomy

Speak up

when you think a child has been abused

If you suspect a child has been abused, call the Child Abuse Hotline. In Iowa, call (800) 362-2178.

Health Beat | Winter 2015 | 9

What health

screenings do I need?

It’s a new year and many are looking to take a more proactive approach to their health. There are many serious diseases, which can go undetected if you don’t visit your health care provider on a regular basis. Even if you feel fine, screenings can often find illnesses in the early stages when they may be easier to treat.

Here’s a look at preventative health screenings Dr. Ben Daniels, UnityPoint Clinic recommends you discuss with your health care provider.

 men & women:

Cholesterol: Starting at age 20-30 you should have your cholesterol checked every three years or so. If you smoke, have diabetes or if heart disease runs in your family, have your cholesterol checked more often. Blood pressure: Have your blood pressure checked yearly. Diabetes: Everybody should be

screened for diabetes. It is especially important if you have hypertension, hyperlipidemia or are overweight.

Colorectal cancer: Have a colonoscopy starting at age 50. If there is a family history of colon cancer the screening may be done earlier.



Pap smear: Starting at age 21 have a

Prostate screening: Talk with your doctor about the possible benefits of a PSA (prostate-specific antigen) test. PSA is a molecule produced by cells of the prostate gland. If a man’s PSA is elevated and cancer is suspected, a biopsy may be performed to determine whether cancer is present in the prostate.

pap smear every three years to screen for cervical cancer. For women 30 years old or older, have a human papillomavirus (HPV) test along with the pap test.

Mammogram: When it comes to breast health, early detection of cancer is very important. Women should have regular mammograms beginning at age 40, or sooner if there’s a family history of breast cancer. Osteoporosis: A bone mineral density screening is generally recommended for women over age 65. Consult with your doctor to make decisions about preventative steps and treatment options that are right for you.

Ask your health care provider about these health screenings during your next visit. If you need a doctor, visit

Skin cancer: A full exam is recommend-

ed each year and can be done with your health care provider.

Depression: If you have felt down for more than two weeks talk with your health care provider about getting screened for depression.

10 |

Ben Daniels, MD, UnityPoint Clinic Family Medicine Mount Vernon

“It’s important to establish a relationship with a health care provider,” said Ben Daniels, MD, UnityPoint Clinic Family Medicine Mount Vernon. “They will ask you about your family health history, regularly test your cholesterol, make sure your vaccinations are up-to-date and discuss any concerns you may have about your health. That way if you have an issue, you already have someone who knows your health history.”

Jones Regional Medical Center Update

Growing and expanding care In the last two years Jones Regional Medical Center (JRMC) has been named one of the Top 40 Fastest Growing Hospitals in the United States by Modern Healthcare Magazine. In fact, the hospital grew so much it needed to expand after just five short years. To meet the needs of the community, construction is underway on an $11 million dollar expansion and renovation project to accommodate the unprecedented growth. The new additions will be on the central and east end of the hospital campus, which is located at 1795 Highway 64 East in Anamosa. The expansion includes the addition of nearly 20,000 square feet to house outpatient specialty clinics with 18 exam rooms, an Infusion Center and laboratory services. Renovation of 11,000 square feet will expand the Emergency Department, add prep and recovery space to the Operating Room, triple the current space of the Physical, Occupational and Cardiac Rehabilitation areas and double the current Pharmacy department. “Many local residents who had previously traveled to Cedar

Rapids, Dubuque or Iowa City for their health care needs discovered what many of their neighbors already knew, that Jones Regional Medical Center provided high quality care, close to home,” said Eric Briesemeister, Jones Regional Medical Center CEO. “They liked the family feel of a rural facility and kept coming back. The rapid growth is a testament to the quality of our doctors, nurses, staff and volunteers. We are thrilled the community responded to our new facility and we want to continue to give residents what they need and want, close to home.”

Specialty clinic visits The Emergency Department has seen its patient load double in the five years since the hospital opened. One of the major growth areas has been the surge of outpatient

specialty clinic visits. In 2008 there were nine clinics, today there are 18 and that number may grow if other specialists are added. “This expansion project will allow us to continue delivering on the UnityPoint Health vision of care, which is patient-centered and physician-led,” said Briesemeister. “The goal of this team is to surround the individual with care whether it’s at the hospital, clinic or at the patient’s home.” The expansion completion is projected for February, 2016. The JRMC Foundation has a fundraising goal of $2 million.

To learn more about the project or to provide support, call (319) 481-6118.

Care close to home A closer look at some of the specialty clinics at JRMC:

• Cardiology

• Diabetic education

• Chemotherapy

• Pain management

• Gastroenterology

• Kidney care

• General surgery

• Orthopedics

• Wound Clinic

• Eye care Health HealthBeat | Winter Beat | Winter2015 | 2015 |


Ask the Expert How do I make the right choice for cancer care? If you or someone you love has just been diagnosed with cancer the questions are endless. It’s important to lean on family and friends to help you cope and then make a plan to gather as much information as you can about treatment options. “One of the biggest frustrations I see for cancer patients is that they don’t feel like they have control in the decision making process,” said Bobby Koneru, MD, Finley Hospital Wendt Regional Cancer Center radiation oncologist. “There is so much information out there and many patients feel as if there are many different forces dictating their choices of what they can and can’t do. Because of this I believe one of the best things a patient can do is to educate themselves with as much information as possible.”

Understand treatment options One way to do this is to read as much as you can about your particular cancer diagnosis using reputable websites. One site Dr. Koneru recommends is the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (, which has a special section just for patients. “A patient should understand all of the available treatment options for a particular cancer and the risks and

benefits,” said Dr. Koneru. “For example if a patient is diagnosed with lung cancer, options may include surgery or a patient could choose stereotactic radiation. For prostate cancer, it may include robotic prostatectomy or external beam radiation therapy. It’s important that all options are reviewed carefully with the appropriate specialists. For example, during stereotactic radiation for lung cancer, a patient receives high doses of radiation delivered over three to five treatments, which many reports indicate to be comparable to surgery. There are several other options for patients to consider. It’s important to gather as much information as they can, talk to specialists, weigh the

Bobby Koneru, MD, Finley Hospital Wendt Regional Cancer Center radiation oncologist

data available and consider what is the quality of life after such treatment. With some cancers, especially if its in an advanced stage, treatment options may be limited and there is a certain treatment the patient will need to follow. But for some early stage cancers there may be several options. “I really encourage patients to consider all of the possible treatments available,” said Dr. Koneru. “I refer patients to the appropriate specialist if there is a situation where another option is just as good.”

QUESTIONS to ask the doctor if diagnosed with cancer What stage is my cancer? What are all of the potential treatments? Who are the specialists I need to talk to regarding my treatment options?

How will each of these options affect my quality of life? Which treatment has a better quality of life?

To learn more about your treatment options call the cancer specialists at a UnityPoint Health hospital near you. Cedar Rapids: (319) 558-4876 | Dubuque: (563) 589-2468 | Waterloo: (319) 235-5163 12 |



For your Health Ronald McDonald Family Room® opens at St. Luke’s

3D mammography available

Hundreds of families with hospitalized children staying at St. Luke’s now have a place to call home with the recent opening of a Ronald McDonald Family Room® at the Cedar Rapids hospital.

UnityPoint Health hospitals in Eastern Iowa are pleased to announce 3D mammography (digital breast tomosynthesis) is available for breast cancer screening.

The Ronald McDonald Family Room® is a joint project between the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Eastern Iowa & Western Illinois and St. Luke’s. It’s available to families with children receiving treatment in either the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) or pediatric unit at St. Luke’s and is a place for parents to go to rest and rejuvenate. The nearly 1,440 square foot Ronald McDonald Family Room® includes three sleeping rooms, two shower suites, laundry, kitchen, dining and a living area. Other amenities such as a family meal program and a coffee and cookie cart are available. The Ronald McDonald Family Room® is made possible in part, thanks to a $300,000 gift from the Gerdin Family Foundation.

To make a donation to the Ronald McDonald Family Room,® visit

Baby boom at Finley There’s a baby boom at Finley Hospital in Dubuque. The hospital saw a 10 percent increase in deliveries in 2014. The reason for the jump? More parents are choosing Finley as the best place to celebrate their baby’s birthday, thanks to our experienced labor and delivery team and our comfortable birthing suites. You can count on Finley to deliver your precious baby in our state-of-the-art facility, which has had recent updates and renovations. For your added comfort, all of our birthing suites are getting upgrades to make it an even more perfect place to start a family. Finley is Dubuque’s baby hospital. If you’re expecting soon or just had a baby, visit All Things Baby at to learn everything you need to know for bringing up baby! And you’re invited to join our exclusive online mom’s community to share and swap parenting tips with other local moms at

A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association demonstrated 3D mammography finds a 41 percent increase in the detection of invasive breast cancers and a 29 percent increase in the detection of all breast cancers as compared to conventional 2D mammography alone. The use of 3D mammography has also seen up to a 15 percent reduction in recall rates. This decrease in call backs is expected to reduce the number of patients needing additional imaging for possible mammographic changes on their screening exams. The American Cancer Society recommends all women receive annual mammograms beginning at age 40 – and consult with their doctor earlier if they have a family history of breast cancer.

To schedule your next mammogram, contact a UnityPoint Health hospital closest to you. Cedar Rapids: (319) 369-7216 Dubuque: (563) 589-2402 Waterloo: (319) 833-6001

Health HealthBeat | Winter Beat | Winter2015 | 2015 | 13

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Health Beat Winter 2015  

Published by UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids

Health Beat Winter 2015  

Published by UnityPoint Health Cedar Rapids

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