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For the early detection of lung cancer in high risk individuals, The Medical Center now offers a lung cancer screening using low-dose computed tomography (CT). Screenings using low-dose CT can detect cancer early when it is most treatable.
A draft recommendation from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force suggests that adults who have no signs or symptoms of lung cancer but who are at high risk for developing lung cancer should be screened every year with low-dose CT. High risk is defined as people who meet the following criteria:
Heavy smoking is defined as a smoking history of 30 “pack years” or more. A “pack year” is smoking an average of one pack per day for one year. For example, someone is considered a heavy smoker if they smoke one pack per day for 30 years or smoke two packs per day for 15 years. Adults who meet the criteria above should also be asymptomatic for lung cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, the symptoms of lung cancer include:
A low dose CT scan is a test which utilizes x-ray technology to scan the body. CT uses low doses of radiation to produce a series of detailed pictures of the lungs. Unlike traditional x-ray, CT can more accurately identify early stage cancer when it is most treatable.
The cost of the scan is $125 and currently not covered by insurance companies. The fee is payable at the time of service. Only individuals who meet the criteria should be screened using low-dose CT. To check eligibility for the screening, individuals can call The Medical Center at 270-745-1199 or 1-800-231-9621 or talk with their physician. Low-dose CT scans can be scheduled at The Medical Center in Bowling Green, Scottsville, or Franklin, or at Western Kentucky Diagnostic Imaging. A physician order is required for the screening.
About Lung Cancer
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States and in Kentucky. According to the Kentucky Cancer Consortium, Kentucky’s death rate from cancer is 46% higher than the national rate. Over 3,500 people died from lung cancer in 2010. It is estimated that over 4,500 cases of lung cancer are diagnosed each year. Of those cases, 80% are diagnosed at a late stage.
The number one risk factor for lung cancer is smoking. It is estimated that about 85 percent of lung cancers are caused by smoking. In the United States, Kentucky has the highest rate of smoking.
The risk of developing lung cancer increases with age, with most cancers occurring in people age 55 and older. The risk of lung cancer also increases with the amount and length of time someone smokes.
The Medical Center received full accreditation with PCI from the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPC) on September 13, 2013. This the fourth accreditation cycle The Medical Center has completed since 2004. The Medical Center is the only Chest Pain Center in Southcentral Kentucky accredited with PCI. Percutaneous coronary intervention, referred to as PCI, is the use of cardiac catheterization to treat the narrowed coronary arteries of the heart.
“Receiving the highest level of accreditation by the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care demonstrates that The Medical Center is providing the national standard of care right here in our community for a heart attack patient,” said Connie D. Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Health Corporation, parent company of The Medical Center. “The use of PCI allows our interventional cardiologists to go directly to the source of a blockage to preserve heart muscle and potentially reduce mortality.”
According to guidelines established by the American College of Cardiologists and the American Heart Association, when done in a timely fashion, PCI is the preferred treatment option for patients suffering from acute myocardial infarction, or a heart attack. The Medical Center operates its Cardiac Catheterization Lab 24 hours a day, seven days a week to ensure that PCI can be performed by an interventional cardiologist when indicated.
“The rigorous standards we meet in treating heart attack patients are reflected in our accreditation by the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care,” said Bart Spurlin, M.D., Medical Director of The Medical Center Emergency Department. “Our team of healthcare professionals from Medical Center EMS, Emergency Department, Cardiac Cath Lab, Nursing and various ancillary departments works tirelessly to ensure the most appropriate, evidence-based care is provided in the most efficient and timely manner to save lives and reduce the damaging effects of heart attacks.”
Heart attacks are the leading cause of death in the United States, with 600,000 people dying annually of heart disease. More than five million Americans visit hospitals each year with chest pain. SCPC’s goal is to significantly reduce the mortality rate of these patients by teaching the public to recognize and react to the early symptoms of a possible heart attack, reduce the time that it takes to receive treatment, and increase the accuracy and effectiveness of treatment.
“We have seen some amazing outcomes as a result of the work we are doing at The Medical Center,” said Dr. Spurlin. “Many are returning home to their families who would not have survived a few years ago.”
The Accredited Chest Pain Center’s protocol-driven and systematic approach to patient management allows physicians to reduce time to treatment during the critical early stages of a heart attack, when treatments are most effective, and to better monitor patients when it is not clear whether or not they are having a coronary event. Such observation helps ensure that patients are neither sent home too early nor needlessly admitted.
With the increase in chest pain centers came the need to establish standards designed to improve the consistency and quality of care provided to patients. SCPC’s accreditation process ensures that centers meet or exceed quality-of-care measures in acute cardiac medicine.
The Accredited Chest Pain Center at The Medical Center has demonstrated its expertise and commitment to quality patient care by meeting or exceeding a wide set of stringent criteria and undergoing an onsite review by a team of SPCP’s accreditation review specialists. Key areas in which an Accredited Chest Pain Center must demonstrate expertise include the following:
The Medical Center-WKU Health Sciences Complex officially opened today with a Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting. The 73,471 square foot, three-story facility was constructed at a cost of $15.6 million dollars.
“It is rewarding to see a project that will have such a significant impact on healthcare come to fruition,” said Connie Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Commonwealth Health Corporation, parent company of The Medical Center. “The Medical Center-WKU Health Sciences Complex will benefit the hospital and university with much needed educational space. The community will also reap the benefits as this facility will help advance healthcare in Southcentral Kentucky by providing highly educated and trained healthcare professionals.”
The Health Sciences Complex will provide space for The Medical Center to offer advanced training with sophisticated technology for its clinical staff. Twenty percent will be used by the hospital for a conference center and bed labs. The bed labs will utilize patient simulators including an iStan virtual patient. This electronic, interactive patient has pupils that dilate, vital signs that respond to anesthesia, and other life-like responses. Training and education with state-of-the-art equipment such as iStan assures a high standard of skills and knowledge of the hospital’s clinical staff.
Western Kentucky University will benefit from much needed space that will house its nursing and doctorate of physical therapy programs. Eighty percent of the facility will be used by the university to accommodate assembly, training, classroom and business functions for WKU. The university has doubled its enrollment for the nursing program with 80 students scheduled to start the fall 2013 semester on August 26.
"It is our responsibility to ensure a well-trained workforce to meet the needs of the region's healthcare providers," said Dr. Gary A. Ransdell, President of Western Kentucky University. "Thanks to The Medical Center, we now have an exceptional space in which to expand our programs and double the number of nursing students at WKU. This building is also home to our new Doctor of Physical Therapy program, which opened to 30 students earlier this summer. We are grateful for this partnership with The Medical Center, and we applaud the city and county for the visionary leadership to expand the Tax Increment Financing district to include this project."
The Medical Center issued bonds to pay for construction. WKU will lease the facility from The Medical Center for 25 years, income from which will be used toward debt service and operating expenses.
The facility is located at 700 First Avenue on the edge of the hospital’s campus that borders 31W Bypass. Stengel Hill Architecture designed the facility to allow for future expansion. Scott, Murphy & Daniel, LLC served as the general contractor.
Kohl’s Cares® has once again awarded Commonwealth Health Foundation a grant to enable The Medical Center to reach expectant parents with vital obstetrics education classes. This year's grant totaling $31,308 will be used for The Medical Center's Newborn Care and Safety Class which teaches expectant parents essential baby care skills.
"The Newborn Care and Safety Class is one of our most attended classes because expectant parents, as well as new parents, are very eager to learn how to care for their newborn," said Cindy Gilliam, OB Educator for The Medical Center. "Parents want to feel confident and comfortable in caring for their newborn, and this class teaches them the basic skills they need to know."
The Newborn Care and Safety Class is a free, hands-on class where participants use baby dolls to practice swaddling and holding a newborn, diapering and giving the baby a bath. A variety of safety issues are addressed, and a CPR demonstration shows parents what to do in an emergency.
As a result of Kohl's support, The Medical Center expanded its class offerings by adding a second location for the class. The class is held at Fairview Community Health Center Annex in addition to The Medical Center Health & Wellness Center. Last year 34 classes were held with 665 total participants, and 34 classes are already scheduled for 2013.
The Kohl's grant also funds the purchase of safety tote bags for expectant parents who take part in the Newborn Care and Safety class. The tote bags, which include items such as "The Joy of Parenthood" publication on baby care and safety, DNA identification kit, bath water temperature tester, infant CPR refrigerator magnet, and baby safety gift set, are provided to parents at no cost. A baby monitor is also given out in a drawing at every class.
The Medical Center is the local Kohl's Cares® beneficiary. Since 2006, Kohl's has donated $164,509 to The Medical Center to support its health and wellness programs including construction of two community walking trails at local elementary schools.
Kohl's commitment to Commonwealth Health Foundation and The Medical Center is made possible through the Kohl's Cares® philanthropic initiative. Kohl's Cares® includes a merchandise program featuring $5 books and plush toys where 100% of net profits benefit health and educational opportunities for children nationwide. Since 2000 when Kohl's Cares® was introduced, Kohl's has raised more than $208 million through its merchandise program. In addition to its hospital partnerships, Kohl's Cares includes Kohl's Cares® scholarship program, Kohl's Associates in Action program, and fundraising cards for local schools and nonprofit youth organizations.
About Kohl’s Department Stores
About Commonwealth Health Foundation
About The Medical Center
Craig Tyree, M.D. and the staff at the Barren River Regional Cancer Center in Glasgow are celebrating 10 years of delivering compassionate and technically advanced radiation therapy to cancer patients in Barren and surrounding counties. Since opening in 2002, Barren River Regional Cancer Center has provided radiation treatment services to over 2,000 patients.
“For the past decade, my staff and I have had the opportunity to bring the most advanced treatments in cancer care to this area,” said Craig Tyree, M.D., Radiation Oncologist and Medical Director for Barren River Regional Cancer Center. “We are proud to provide this region with advanced technology and compassionate care, and we are looking forward to many more years of working with the outstanding people in this community.”
Barren River Regional Cancer Center originally was established by The Medical Center in late 2002. In early 2003, The Medical Center entered into a joint venture with TJ Samson Community Hospital to operate the Center. Dr. Tyree, a board certified radiation oncologist, has served as Medical Director since opening. In addition to Dr. Tyree, the Center is staffed by radiation therapists, a medical physicist, dosimetrists, and oncology nurses. Barren River Regional Cancer Center is accredited by The Joint Commission and is recognized by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons.
In 2009 Barren River Regional Cancer Center completed an approximate $5 million expansion. Part of the 4,000 square feet that was added to the existing structure was a vault for a new Trilogy™ linear accelerator. The Trilogy combines image-guidance technology to focus on a tumor with a very precise radiation beam. With advanced technologies, the Center offers stereotactic radiosurgery, intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), stereotactic body radiation therapy, image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT), 3-D conformal radiotherapy, and palliative radiation therapy.
To celebrate the 10 year anniversary, Dr. Tyree and the staff at the Barren River Regional Cancer Center will host an open house on Wednesday, January 23 from 2 to 4 p.m. The Center is located at 103 Trista Lane in Glasgow. For more information, call (270) 651-2478.
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