Health briefs for August 25th-31st

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Mental health center receives re-accreditation

The Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) has accredited the Coastal Empire Community Mental Health Center, for a period of three years, in the areas of outpatient treatment for adults and outpatient treatment for children and adolescents.

The center, which served 3,953 people, including 1,261 children and adolescents and 184 individuals over the age of 65 in fiscal year 2016, provides mental health services to Allendale, Beaufort, Colleton, Hampton and Jasper counties.

Operated by the South Carolina Department of Mental Health, the Center is a component of the Agency’s division of Community Mental Health Services.

To learn more about Coastal Empire, visit www.state.sc.us/dmh/coastal/index.html.

Dr. Brandon McElroy
Dr. Brandon McElroy

Dr. Brandon McElroy joins BMH Lady’s Island Internal Medicine

Beaufort Memorial Hospital has added a new physician to its busy Lady’s Island Internal Medicine practice. Internist Dr. Brandon McElroy will begin seeing patients in September.

A summa cum laude graduate of the University of Tennessee, McElroy earned his Doctorate of Medicine from the university’s Health Science Center in 2013. Throughout his medical training, he volunteered at a clinic in Memphis providing free primary care to underserved adults and served as a mentor to fellow medical students. Earlier, he worked as a psychiatric technician at Lakeshore Mental Health Institute in Knoxville.

This spring, he completed his internship and residency at the Medical University of South Carolina.

Lady’s Island Internal Medicine is located at 117 Sea Island Parkway. Also at the practice are board-certified internists Drs. Philip Cusumano and Robert Vyge as well as certified physician assistants John Garner and Eric Gearhart. To make an appointment with any of the providers, call 843-522-7240.

Beaufort Memorial makes list of Most Wired Hospitals 

For the 14th straight year, Beaufort Memorial earned a spot on the list of the nation’s Most Wired Hospitals, putting it in the company of some of the top academic medical centers in the country.

To make the list, hospitals had to meet the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) set of rigorous IT criteria, designed to reduce the likelihood of medical errors and improve outcomes.

“We’ve continued to look at technology solutions with the goal of improving patients’ quality of care,” said BMH Chief Information Officer Ed Ricks. “It’s especially gratifying to see our investments working to take care outside of the walls of the hospital and into the community.”

Each year, Hospitals & Health Networks magazine, the flagship publication of the AHA, asks hospitals and health systems nationwide to complete a survey that measures their use of information technology. The 2016 Health Care’s Most Wired survey was completed by 680 participants, representing 2,146 hospitals — more than 34 percent of all U.S. hospitals.

According to this year’s survey, hospitals are ramping up their efforts to stop hackers and also working to boost their capabilities in telehealth and population health. BMH has pushed ahead on all three fronts.

The hospital also participates in MUSC Health Telestroke, a telemedicine program that allows Beaufort Memorial Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit physicians to consult with MUSC Health stroke experts at a moment’s notice. The survey showed stroke care is the most rapid growth area for telehealth services, up 38 percent from 2015, as evidence-based studies emphasize the time urgency of treatment.

Most recently, Beaufort Memorial began using new software to manage the data from population health, a prevention program designed to reach people who might not realize they are at risk for diabetes, stroke, heart disease and other debilitating conditions, and encourage them to take a more proactive role in their health care. Initially, the hospital is focusing on the wellness of its own employees and will expand the program to patients in the near future.

Megan Love Grabowski
Megan Love Grabowski

Celadon Club gets new wellness director

Megan Love Grabowski has joined Celadon Club as the new Wellness Center director.

Celadon Club provides comprehensive health, fitness, and wellness services to residents of the newly revitalized Celadon community, as well as to a local Beaufortonians through a limited number of outside memberships.

As Wellness Center director, Grabowski will maintain and oversee the entirety of Celadon Club, from planning events for club members to personally recruiting fitness trainers and spa staff. Grabowski will also be available to assist each Celadon Club member to help them set and reach their wellness goals.

A graduate of Salisbury University with a Bachelor’s in Communications and Marketing, Grabowski has a background in fitness coaching, event planning, teaching several types of dance and field hockey.  In her spare time, she enjoys mountain biking, kayaking and flying trapeze.

A meet and greet event was held at Celadon Club from on Saturday, Aug. 20. Celadon is an upscale, wellness-focused, master-planned community on Lady’s Island – five minutes from downtown Beaufort. For more information, visit CeladonLiving.com

Mental health specialists needed at BJVIM

The Bluffton Jasper County Volunteers in Medicine (BJVIM) is seeking trained mental health specialists who are interested in volunteering their time at the Bluffton and Ridgeland clinics.

“Many patients coming to the clinic have health problems that contribute to employment issues, relationship problems, and functioning in the world,” said Dr. Helene Stoller, a 25-year psychologist who volunteers at the clinic.

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, 60 percent of people in the United States who have mental health conditions — including depression, anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder — and nearly 90 percent of people with substance use disorders do not receive the care they need.

Stoller, who is the only mental health professional on staff at BJVIM, spends four hours a week meeting with patient and doctors. With more than 2,500 patients who call BJVIM their medical home, having only one mental health provider represents a gap in services.

Mental health specialists who are interested in volunteering their time are encouraged to call Pam Toney at 843-706-7090, ext. 104.

Bluffton Jasper County Volunteers in Medicine clinics provide medical services free of charge to individuals who are without health insurance, live or work in greater Bluffton or Jasper County and qualify based on income.