Browse Author: Paul Hackbarth

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Over 1,200 New Winter Accessories Collected for Students

Thanks to the kind and generous giving spirit of Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) employees and the community, area students can keep a little bit warmer this winter.

A total of 1,264 gloves, mittens, hats, scarves, socks and other winter accessories were collected during the “Share the Warmth” drive, sponsored by the PCRMC Mission Possible team.

During the drive held from late November 2017 through the new year, both PCRMC staff and the public were invited to donate  new winter clothing items for local children who would otherwise go without these warm necessities.

“It was wonderful to see the outpouring of support for this cause. I was very pleased to see that more than 1,200 items were donated,” said Tracy Limmer, PCRMC Mission Possible team member.

On Friday, January 5, 2018, members of the PCRMC Mission Possible group sorted and delivered the winter clothing accessories to area public schools in Rolla, St. James, Newburg, Edgar Springs, Waynesville, Dixon, Salem and Vienna.

“The schools were very appreciative of our donation,” Limmer said.

 

first baby 2018

PCRMC Welcomes First Baby of 2018

A New Year’s Day arrival received a special welcome from the Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) Obstetrics Department nurses and staff.

Mathis Zephryn Hooper was the first baby born at the hospital in Rolla, Missouri, in 2018, arriving at 10:58 a.m. Monday, January 1. He weighed 7 pounds, 7 ounces, and was 21 inches long. Mathis was welcomed by his mother, Andromeda Hooper, of St. James. This is Andromeda’s first child.

Andromeda’s due date was December 29, 2017, but Mathis decided to wait until the new year to be born. “A lot of my family told me they thought he would be a New Year’s Day baby, but I didn’t believe them,” Andromeda said.

As part of a long-standing tradition at PCRMC, the first baby of the new year receives gifts and baby items to commemorate the event. Several local businesses donated these items.

This year, Mathis and his family received a welcome basket filled with baby items, including diapers and wipes from Big Lots; a book and a toy from Rolla Books & Toys; a baby ring from Kent Jewelry; a baby ring and water bottle from Taylor’s Jewelry; a piggy bank and shaker cup from First State Community Bank; a cooler bag, cup and other items from Phelps County Bank; a $20 gift card from Cupcakes & Cravings; a Pack ’n Play from Walmart; and $100 worth of baby items from the PCRMC Marketing Department.

On average, more than 800 babies are born at PCRMC each year.

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Waynesville Students Learn About Oncology at DDCI

Physicians, nurses and staff from the PCRMC Delbert Day Cancer Institute (DDCI) hosted 14 students interested in pursuing careers in the healthcare field on Tuesday, December 19th.

The students are enrolled in the Career Embedded Medical Studies class at Waynesville High School. Along with their teacher, Megan Callis, the students got a firsthand look at the types of careers required in an oncology setting.

The students received a tour of the DDCI and listened to presentations from DDCI physicians, nurses and staff. All presenters explained their job functions, the educational requirements, specific oncology training and the professional outlook, or future demand, for their jobs.

“The goal of the visit was to help local students understand there are many career paths available in healthcare and each of these fields are important in the care of our patients,” said DDCI Director Jeremy Stinson.

DDCI Medical Director and Radiation Oncologist Christopher Spencer, MD, echoed Stinson’s sentiments. “All the people who work here are important, from the physicians, to the nurses to the staff,” he said. “We approach everything as a team effort, because we know that each member of our staff makes a huge impact on our patients’ lives.”

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Auxiliary Awards Nursing and Allied Health Scholarships

The Auxiliary & Volunteer Services organization at Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) has been supporting healthcare professionals for many years by awarding scholarships to area nursing and Allied Health students.

This year, the Auxiliary awarded a total of nine $2,000 scholarships, including one special RN scholarship named after Molly Mills, Auxiliary Board secretary. The Auxiliary received $1,000 in Mills’ memory, and the donation was matched with Auxiliary funds to offer an additional $2,000 scholarship.

The scholarships were given to students in three categories: Registered Nurse (RN) students, Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) students and Allied Health career students.

The RN/Allied Health scholarship winners were Megan Studdard (RN winner), Leanne Widener (Allied Health winner), Rebecca King (Allied Health winner), Theresa Benney (RN winner), Janet Shepard (RN winner) and Nikolas San (RN winner). Auxiliary Board and staff included in the above photos are Julie Schmidt (2nd Auxiliary VP), Jayne Stites (Auxiliary President) and Tina Pridgeon (Auxiliary Director).

These six scholarships were presented during the Auxiliary’s quarterly luncheon in December 2017. Approximately 55 people attended the lunch.

Three students earned LPN scholarships during the Lamp Lighting Ceremony at the Rolla Public Schools Administration Building — Alan Yelton, Lauren Wood and Stevie German. Also pictured are Tina Pridgeon (Auxiliary Director) and Jayne Stites (Auxiliary President).

The Lamp Lighting Ceremony pays homage to Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern-day nursing. Nightingale was known as “the Lady with the Lamp” because she spent her night rounds giving personal care to the wounded.

The ceremony signifies the successful completion of the first 16 weeks of the Rolla Technical Center practical nursing program and prepares students to begin their practice of nursing in the clinical setting.

“Congratulations to the 2017 Auxiliary scholarship winners,” PCRMC Auxiliary Director Tina Pridgeon said. “The Auxiliary feels fortunate to help support these healthcare students as they pursue their studies.”

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PCRMC Begins Offering Robotic-Assisted Surgeries

 

This fall, surgeons at Phelps County Regional Medical Center (PCRMC) began using da Vinci robotics to assist with certain surgeries. In November, Dana Voight, MD, general surgeon at PCRMC, successfully performed three surgeries using the da Vinci Si surgical system.

This system is a new tool at PCRMC that utilizes advanced robotic, computer and optical technologies to assist surgeons with their operations. The technology does not act on its own, and the robotic system’s movements are controlled by surgeons, said Shawn Hodges, administrative director of ancillary services at PCRMC.

“We’ve started with common surgeries, such as gallbladders and hernias,” said Dr. Voight, who was the first surgeon at PCRMC to use robotics in a surgery. However, other physicians and surgeons are starting to use the technology, too. By February or March of 2018, robotic-assisted surgeries are expected to be available in the following PCRMC service lines: general surgery, urology and obstetrics/gynecology.

“General surgery is experiencing a shift to advanced minimally invasive techniques utilizing robotic technology,” said Jennifer Bechtel, director of surgical services at PCRMC. “Robotic surgery is the current standard of care in performing surgical prostate cancer treatments, and much of the gynecological surgical platform and urological procedures are also being performed via robotics.”

PCRMC surgeons have been performing laparoscopic surgeries, which are minimally invasive, for many years. Laparoscopy involves using several small incisions (also known as ports) to perform a surgical procedure rather than making a large incision.

Robotic surgery is a laparoscopic procedure, only with an added layer of technology. “Robotics augments what we already do,” Dr. Voight said.

One of the features of the da Vinci Si surgical system is its high-definition 3D vision capability. This allows the surgeon access to special instruments and computer software to operate with enhanced vision, precision, dexterity and control.

According to information from Intuitive Surgical, maker of the da Vinci robotics system, “the 3D-HD image is highly magnified, so your surgeon has a close-up view of the area he or she is operating on.”

Unlike laparoscopic surgeries, the da Vinci instruments have mechanical wrists that bend and rotate to mimic the movements of the human wrist. This lets surgeons make small, precise movements inside patients’ bodies.

“It’s like having an articulating wrist inside that can rotate 360 degrees,” Dr. Voight said.

The robotic system includes a patient cart that has the robot with arms. The physician can control the robot’s arms from a separate surgeon’s console.

Studies of the da Vinci surgical system have shown many benefits compared to open surgery. Some of these include a shorter hospital stay, fewer complications, less blood loss and less need for narcotic pain medicine after the operation.

“There’s potential for less pain and for a faster recovery time,” Dr. Voight said.

Currently, there are robotic programs available at hospitals and medical centers in Springfield, St. Louis, Jefferson City and Columbia. While many of the surgeries that can be performed with the help of robotics already occur at PCRMC, there may be some, such as gynecological procedures, that patients will not have to travel far for anymore.

Robotic surgeries are not for everybody. Patients should talk to their physician to decide if da Vinci surgery is right for them. Only a physician can determine whether an operation using da Vinci robotics is appropriate for a patient’s situation.