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Hannibal Regional News

Hannibal Regional Healthcare System News Archive

Hannibal Regional Chaplain Selected As The President of the MO Chaplains Association Bookmark

Allen ClarkHannibal, MO -- Hannibal Regional Chaplain Allen Clark, Pastoral Care Manager,  was selected as the President of the Missouri Chaplain’s Association for the 2016 - 2017 term. He has been a member since 1990 and served on the MCA board since 2011. Chaplain Clark has served as a staff chaplain and Pastoral Care Manager at Hannibal Regional for over 20 years (October 1995).

The Missouri Chaplain’s Association is a program membership group  of the Missouri Hospital Association. MCA’s primary purpose is to provide training and support  for chaplains throughout Missouri and offer consultation to other agencies, governmental or church-related, that provide and/or support chaplains in the ministry.  Chaplains conferences are held twice a year,  a spring conference and fall conference. The fall conference is in conjunction with the Missouri Hospital Association’s Convention at Tan-Tar-A in November. Chaplain Clark sees serving as the MCA  president as an opportunity to work with fellow chaplains to provide an avenue of training and support for pastoral care members throughout the state.

 

Hannibal Regional serves residents of the tri-state area from more than ten locations and includes Hannibal Regional Hospital, Hannibal Regional Medical Group, and Hannibal Regional Foundation. Hannibal Regional Hospital is a 99-bed, acute care hospital providing comprehensive health and wellness services. Hannibal Regional is recognized as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals™ for Coronary Intervention care and was also honored with the Healthgrades 2017 Joint Replacement Excellence Award™ placing Hannibal Regional among the top 10% in the nation for joint replacement procedures. Hannibal Regional is the only hospital in Missouri to receive both achievements 2 years in a row, 2016-2017. In addition, Hannibal Regional is recognized by Healthgrades with a 2016 Outstanding Patient Experience Award, putting them in the top 15% in the nation for this category.  Hannibal Regional Medical Group is a growing multi-specialty physician group delivering primary, specialty and express care services at multiple locations in northeast Missouri. For more information on Hannibal Regional Healthcare System, visit www.hannibalregional.org.

 

Trista Long Receives Her Doctorate of Nursing Practice Bookmark

Trista LongTrista Long, RN, MBA, ON-C, recently  received her DNP from Chamberlain College of Nursing.  The DNP is a Doctorate of Nursing Practice with the specialty being in Systems Leadership.  With healthcare systems being complex, it is vital that Hannibal Regional has nurses prepared to lead intra- and inter- professional teams, make evidence-based practice changes and to be a mentor and role model to other nurses aspiring to lead and change healthcare.

 

Hannibal Regional serves residents of the tri-state area from more than ten locations and includes Hannibal Regional Hospital, Hannibal Regional Medical Group, and Hannibal Regional Foundation. Hannibal Regional Hospital is a 99-bed, acute care hospital providing comprehensive health and wellness services. Hannibal Regional is recognized as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals™ for Coronary Intervention care and was also honored with the Healthgrades 2017 Joint Replacement Excellence Award™ placing Hannibal Regional among the top 10% in the nation for joint replacement procedures. Hannibal Regional is the only hospital in Missouri to receive both achievements 2 years in a row, 2016-2017. In addition, Hannibal Regional is recognized by Healthgrades with a 2016 Outstanding Patient Experience Award, putting them in the top 15% in the nation for this category.  Hannibal Regional Medical Group is a growing multi-specialty physician group delivering primary, specialty and express care services at multiple locations in northeast Missouri. For more information on Hannibal Regional Healthcare System, visit www.hannibalregional.org.

Hannibal Regional Medical Group’s Dr. Sarva Participates in Promising Research Study Bookmark

SarvaHannibal, MO -- Sivatej Sarva, MD, PhD, is a Pulmonary and Critical Care physician at Hannibal Regional Medical Group. While working with patients is one of the most rewarding parts of his career, Dr. Sarva also expends significant effort during his non-clinical time doing research which will help the medical community give patients better care. In his latest publication in reputable journal PLOS One, Dr. Sarva and a team of researchers have discovered a new way of studying strains of bacteria and developing new antibiotics.

 

“There is an urgent need to develop new antibiotics as disease-causing bacteria are developing resistance to antibiotics that are currently on the market.” Dr. Sarva stated. “Most of the present antibiotics are not specific and many times when disease-causing bacterium is identified, doctors are forced to prescribe a broad spectrum antibiotic, leading to the removal of beneficial bacteria from the body and contributing to the development of antibiotic resistance.”

 

The organism used for Dr. Sarva’s study is Francisella tularensis. This bacterium is mainly prevalent in the states of Arkansas, Missouri and Oklahoma. It is a tick-borne disease causing severe pneumonia called tularemia, mainly affecting hunters in these states. Dr. Sarva explained that “This bacterium has multiple strains which range from strains causing severe life threatening diseases to those which are completely harmless. The present research developed a new strategy where the gene products of the highly contagious, moderately contagious and non-contagious strains were compared reliably. This helped in identifying targets which are unique to the contagious strains. These targets are now being researched further to develop new antibiotics. As these medicines will be specific to the bacterium, they have the potential to be more effective and also have less of a chance of becoming ineffective due to development of resistance from the bacterium.”

 

“The new strategy we devised to help fight antibiotic-resistant bacterium is not limited to just Francisella,” said Dr. Sarva. “It can be applied to many of the other bacteria which cause severe infections. Widespread use of this technique could help in the development of new antibiotics and help to combat the problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.”

 

Dr. Sarva has been with Hannibal Regional Medical Group since 2016 and was recently board certified in Critical Care Medicine.  Dr. Sarva is also board certified in Pulmonary Medicine and holds a Ph.D. in Molecular Sciences.  To contact Dr. Sarva’s office call 573-629-3536.

Hannibal Cannibal Seeks Artists Bookmark

Hannibal, MO -- While the winter weather may be keeping us inside right now, before we know it the warm days of summer will be here, which means it will be time for the 22nd Annual Hannibal Cannibal.  The Cannibal, a 5/10/15k run and 5k walk sponsored by Hannibal Regional Foundation, will be Saturday, July 1 at 7:00 am.  As in the past, the Foundation is again seeking artists to design the logo for this year’s Hannibal Cannibal and children’s Fun Run.

Artist, graphic designers and anyone who enjoys designing are encouraged to enter designs into the logo contest.  The winning Cannibal logo will be displayed on the runner t-shirts, volunteer t-shirts, stage backdrop, and all marketing materials including:  newspaper, magazine, TV ads, and entry packets.  The winning Fun Run logo will be on the all the youth t-shirts and the volunteer shirts.   For the last three years the race has averaged over 1,900 participants, representing over 30 states and several foreign countries.  The winning logo could possibly be seen worldwide!

 

This year’s race will benefit the Foundation’s Cherish Campaign, which is raising funds to assist with expanding Women’s Health Services at Hannibal Regional. The expansion of Women’s Health Services at Hannibal Regional is a crucial element in meeting all the health needs of our region. Offering a full continuum of services and resources for women of all ages and their health needs is invaluable to growth and success in this area. Hannibal Regional Foundation is assisting in bringing these vital expanded services to our community through the Cherish Campaign.  This campaign is raising $160,000 to aid in bringing new technology, resources and women’s health services to our community.

Contest entries must be received by February 17, 2017.  The winners will be announced March 1st and recognized during the awards ceremony of the race with a trophy, $50 Hannibal Chamber of Commerce gift certificate, free entry into the race and a free race t-shirt.

 

For a full list of design requirements, please visit the Hannibal Cannibal website, www.hannibalcannibal.com or contact Hannibal Regional Hospital Foundation at (573) 629-3577.  

Hannibal Regional Auxiliary Demonstrates Compassionate Giving Bookmark

Hannibal, MO -- December 19th was a very special day for Hannibal Regional as the Hannibal Regional Auxiliary presented them with a check for over $98,000.  A major portion of these funds supported the Auxiliary’s pledge to the James E. Cary Cancer Center’s new Linear Accelerator.  Other projects funded by the Auxiliary include scholarships for Hannibal Regional team members, coloring books, puppets, the Wish List Program, and much more.  

In 2016 HRH Auxiliary volunteers have given over 24,000 hours of service which is the equivalent of more than $550,000 in service to Hannibal Regional.  Service is the heart of the Auxiliary and its main purpose.  “I’m so thankful to be part of such a generous team,” shares Karen Sutor, Hannibal Regional Auxiliary President. “We enjoy supporting our community and it’s so rewarding to see our service benefit so many.”

Do you enjoy helping others?  Are you looking for a way to have a positive impact on our community?  Call the Hannibal Regional Hospital Auxiliary today!  There are several areas within Hannibal Regional Healthcare System where you could volunteer your time, including activities with patients, the James E. Cary Cancer Center, Hannibal Children’s Center, two gift shops, and many more!  For more information call Alicia Rollins at 573-248-5272.

 

Photo cutline:  Pictured from left to right is Todd Ahrens, CEO of Hannibal Regional; Dr. Joel Hassien, Vice Chairperson of Hannibal Regional Foundation’s Board of Directors; Dr. Wendy Harrington, CEO of Hannibal Regional Foundation and Karen Sutor, President of Hannibal Regional Auxiliary.

Ask the Expert: What is Polypharmacy? Bookmark

Hannibal, MO -- Polypharmacy is the use of multiple medications by a patient. The minimum number of medications used to define polypharmacy varies, but usually ranges from five to ten. To decrease the risk of medication-related problems and being prescribed multiple medications for the same symptoms, patients should always review their medication list with their provider at every visit.

 

Dr. Venkata Kada with Hannibal Regional Medical Group notes, “Taking multiple medications is associated with an increased risk for adverse drug reactions or medication-related problems, especially in the elderly. If a patient, age 65 or older, takes multiple medications, he or she is at high risk for medication-related problems and there are several contributing factors.”  Sometimes medicine can create a side effect which presents itself as a new symptom or condition; treating that new symptom with another medicine will unnecessarily increase the number of medications and medication-related problems, which is referred to as prescription cascade.

 

An elderly patient is more likely to receive care from several physicians and each of them may prescribe a different medication.  As a geriatric board certified physician, Dr. Kada has a deep understanding of the biology of aging as well as extensive knowledge of its associated diseases and conditions.  Dr Kada shares, “Physiologic changes associated with aging affect drug metabolism and increase the risk of medication-related problems. These changes, along with the use of multiple medications, increase the risk of adverse interactions between medications.”


Criteria have been developed by experts to assess inappropriate medication use in older adult individuals. The most widely used benchmarks for inappropriate medications are the Beers criteria, which can help avoid inappropriate use of medications in the elderly, including certain over-the-counter products.  Dr. Kada says, “To avoid inappropriate use of medications, it is important to talk with your physician before taking any over-the-counter drugs.”  Multiple medications are often required to treat complex medical problems and to meet disease-specific clinical practice guidelines. Discussion with your physician about these issues will help avoid over-prescribing, under-prescribing and other medication-related problems.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. Kada call 573-629-3440

Hannibal Regional Medical Group to Break Ground on New Facility in Bowling Green Bookmark

Bowling Green ExpansionBowling Green, MO --Hannibal Regional Medical Group is pleased to announce that in the fall of 2017 Pike Medical Clinic will have a new home. Pike Medical Clinic will be moving to a brand new facility located by the Bowling Green Walmart and will provide care during evenings and weekends as well as offer specialty services.

Hannibal Regional Medical Group is committed to fulfilling the health care needs of the community.  “We will be able to provide longer hours and build on Pike Medical’s legacy of service to the community by bringing a specialized team of providers to support the Pike Medical team.” shares Kurt Ebers, Clinic Administrator at Hannibal Regional Medical Group.  “We put an emphasis on helping our patients find better health and we’re committed to meeting the healthcare needs of the community.”

Dr. Onik, Dr. Pitney, Jennifer Chandler, FNP-BC and Sean Weaver, FNP-C will continue to serve the community at the new location and at the Pike Medical Clinic in Louisiana.  The new, larger facility will provide space for specialty services and diagnostic testing.  Once the new facility is completed the Pike Medical team will begin offering after-hours medical care.  The team at Pike Medical will be available during the evenings and weekends for basic medical needs.

As part of the Hannibal Regional Healthcare System, Hannibal Regional Medical Group (HRMG) is a growing multi-specialty physician group continuing to expand primary and specialty care services to meet the health needs of northeast Missouri and west central Illinois residents. HRMG primary and specialty physicians deliver a range of acute, chronic and preventive medical care services. In addition to diagnosing and treating illness, they also provide preventive care, including routine checkups, health-risk assessments, immunizations, screening tests and personalized counseling on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Hannibal Regional Medical Group has locations in Bowling Green, Canton, Hannibal, Louisiana, Monroe City, and Shelbina, as well as an Express Care clinic and a Vision Institute in Hannibal.

Stroke Awareness Bookmark

By: Marie Frankenbach, BSN, RN, Stroke Educator
Hannibal Regional


Did you know that in the United States, approximately 800,000 individuals have strokes each year? Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in America, killing nearly 130,000 people a year. That’s 1 in every 20 deaths. However, early treatment and preventative measures can reduce the brain damage that occurs as the result of a stroke.

Stroke usually refers to the loss of brain function due to a disturbance in the blood flow to the brain. When this occurs, brain cells begin to die and brain damage occurs. Damage from a stroke may be temporary or permanent. How a stroke patient is affected depends on where the stroke occurs in the brain, how much the brain is damaged, how quickly treatment begins, and other factors.

Strokes can be classified into two major categories: ischemic (lack of blood) and hemorrhagic (bleeding). Approximately 87% of all strokes are ischemic and the rest are hemorrhagic. Ischemic strokes are caused by a blockage in a blood vessel that supplies oxygen and nutrients to the brain. If the artery remains blocked for more than a few minutes, the brain can become damaged. Hemorrhagic strokes occur when blood vessels in the brain leak or rupture, causing bleeding into the brain or around the brain.

A TIA (transient ischemic attack) is often called a “mini stroke” or “warning stroke”. The difference between a TIA and a stroke is that the blockage is transient, or temporary. Symptoms are exactly the same as stroke, but usually last less than five minutes. Even if symptoms go away, emergency help should be called immediately. A TIA is a warning sign that a person is at high risk for a stroke.

Stroke can occur at any age. It is important to recognize the signs and symptoms of stroke and take immediate action. Classic stroke symptoms can be remembered by the acronym FAST. This stands for:

(1) Face – sudden weakness or droopiness of the face, problems with vision
(2) Arm – sudden weakness or numbness of one or both arms
(3) Speech – difficulty speaking, slurred speech, or garbled speech
(4) Time – time is very important in stroke treatment. Time is Brain, call 911!

The quicker treatment can begin, the more successful the outcome.

It is very important to note the time the first stroke symptoms began because this could influence potential treatment. Stroke victims who receive treatment within specific time frames from the time symptoms begin are more likely to survive and recover more quickly and are less likely to have permanent disabilities.
The treatment of a stroke depends upon the type of stroke, the time that has passed since the first symptoms occurred, and the patient’s other medical problems. For individuals who have an ischemic stroke, the goal of treatment is to restore blood flow to the affected area of the brain as quickly as possible. TPA, sometimes called a “clot buster”, can be given preferably within three hours upon the onset of symptoms. Stroke patients who receive tPA within 90 minutes of symptom onset are almost three times more likely to recover with little or no disability.

The American Stroke Association/American Heart Association updated guidelines for acute ischemic stroke to recommend the use of stent retrievers for eligible patients. While tPA is a drug to dissolve a clot, a stent retriever is a medical device used to pull it out. Continued treatment for the stroke patient includes secondary prevention with medications such as aspirin, warfarin, and certain cholesterol-lowering medications. In some cases, physical, occupational, or speech therapies may help patients recovering from stroke.
In order to lower your risk for stroke, you should take your medications appropriately, follow up with your physicians as directed, and make lifestyle changes which may decrease risk factors for recurrent stroke. Some risk factors include high blood pressure, atrial fibrillation, high cholesterol, diabetes, tobacco/alcohol/illegal drug use, physical inactivity, and obesity. It is important to work with your healthcare providers to decrease your chances for stroke/TIA as much as possible.

If you are experiencing a stroke, call 911.

Hannibal Regional Auxiliary Participates In "Adopting a Family" Bookmark

Hannibal Regional Auxiliary Participates In

In the spirit of giving this holiday season, Hannibal Regional Auxiliary wanted to help out a local family. Through partnering with a local company they were able to raise funds to help a young mother and her daughter by “adopting the family”. With the generous donations of many members and friends the auxiliary was able to purchase bedding for both the mother and daughter as well as some pillows, lots of clothing, some toys, household items and much more. Karen Sutor, President of Hannibal Regional Auxiliary said “Giving back is what our organization is all about and it is especially meaningful to know that we have had a positive impact during the holiday season.

Help us make Hannibal Regional Auxiliary even stronger! If you like to help others, organize, create, cook, network and contribute to your community, come join us as part of the Auxiliary. For more information call 573-248-5272.

Hannibal Regional Continues Excellence in Coronary Intervention and Orthopedic Care for 2016-2017 Bookmark

Hannibal Regional Continues Excellence in Coronary Intervention and Orthopedic Care for 2016-2017
Hannibal Regional has again been recognized by Healthgrades as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals™ for Coronary Intervention care (five-star rating) and is the only hospital in Missouri to receive this achievement for two years in a row, 2016-2017. Healthgrades, the leading online resource helping consumers make informed decisions to find the right doctor and the right hospital for the right care, evaluated nearly 4,500 hospitals nationwide for 34 of the most common inpatient procedures and conditions.* Healthgrades identified the 100 best-performing hospitals across all conditions or procedures evaluated within coronary intervention.

The achievement is part of findings released October 18th in the Healthgrades 2017 Report to the Nation. The new report demonstrates how clinical performance continues to differ dramatically between hospitals nationally, regionally and at the local level, and the impact this variation may have on health outcomes. For example, from 2013-2015, if all hospitals as a group performed similarly to hospitals receiving five-stars as a group, on average 223,412 lives could potentially have been saved and 162,215 complications could potentially have been avoided.** A five-star rating indicates a hospital’s clinical outcomes are statistically and significantly better than expected when treating the condition or performing the procedure being evaluated.

Additionally, for the 2017 Report to the Nation, Healthgrades compared Specialty Excellence Award Recipients as a group to all other hospitals as a group and found: from 2013-2015, patients treated at hospitals receiving the America's 100 Best Hospitals for Coronary Intervention Award have, on average, a 44.6% lower risk of dying than if they were treated in hospitals that did not receive the award.* Furthermore, from 2013-2015 patients treated at hospitals which did not receive the America's 100 Best Hospitals for Coronary Intervention Award were, on average, 1.81 times more likely to die than if they were treated at hospitals that did receive the award.* *Statistics are based on Healthgrades analysis of MedPAR data for years 2013 through 2015 and represent 3-year estimates for Medicare patients only.

“Those hospitals that have achieved the Healthgrades 100 Best Coronary Intervention distinction have demonstrated a commitment to exceptional quality of care,” said Evan Marks, Chief Strategy Officer for Healthgrades.

Hannibal Regional was also honored with the Healthgrades 2017 Joint Replacement Excellence Award™ placing Hannibal Regional among the top 10% in the nation for joint replacement procedures two years in a row. Related Healthgrades orthopedic accolades for Hannibal Regional include five-star recognition for total knee replacement procedures for a fourth consecutive year (2014-2017), and five-star recognition for total hip replacement procedures for seven consecutive years (2011-2017).

Additionally in 2017, Hannibal Regional has received a five-star rating for pacemaker procedures.
“We take great pride in knowing that Hannibal Regional is the only hospital in Missouri to be recognized by Healthgrades two years in a row as one of America’s 100 best hospitals for coronary interventional treatment for heart disease and that we have once again received the Healthgrades Joint Replacement Excellence Award”, said Hannibal Regional President and Chief Executive Officer C. Todd Ahrens. “Our dedicated physicians, nurses, and team members who work together every day to provide high-quality patient care are who we want to recognize for these achievements.”

Healthgrades evaluated approximately 45 million Medicare inpatient records for nearly 4,500 short-term acute care hospitals nationwide, assessing hospital performance relative to each of 32 common conditions and procedures, as well as an evaluation of comparative outcomes in appendectomy and bariatric surgery using all-payer data provided by 18 states. Healthgrades recognizes a hospital’s quality achievements for cohort-specific performance, specialty area performance, and overall clinical quality. Individual procedure or condition cohorts are designated as five-star (statistically significantly better than expected), three-star (not statistically different from expected) and one-star (statistically significantly worse than expected) categories.