Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Pulmonologist joins Cox Medical Center Branson’s growing team of experts

Cesar Artiles, MD
Cox Medical Center Branson is pleased to announce that Cesar Artiles, MD, has joined CoxHealth Pulmonology and Sleep Medicine clinic.

Dr. Artiles, who specializes in pulmonary and critical care medicine, has received extensive education, training and experience in the diagnosis and treatment of conditions that affect breathing and the lungs, including asthma, COPD, sleep apnea, pneumonia and lung cancer.

He received his medical education at Instituto Tecnologico de Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic and completed his internal medicine residency at Danbury Hospital, in Danbury, Conn. He was honored as the Internal Medicine Residency Program Resident of the Year for 2011-2012 and served as the chief resident of internal medicine from 2012-2013. Dr. Artiles continued his training at Cleveland Clinic - Respiratory Institute where he completed a fellowship in pulmonary and critical care.

“Dr. Artiles is a great asset to our community,” said Cox Medical Center Branson President William Mahoney. “He’s received excellent training at one of the world’s elite medical facilities – Cleveland Clinic. We are truly grateful that he chose to join our team in Branson where he’ll provide top-notch care to Pulmonology and Sleep Medicine patients as well as to some of our most critically ill patients in the hospital.”

Dr. Artiles was inspired by his father, a diabetic, to pursue a career in medicine. It was during his time in medical school however that he decided to focus on pulmonology and critical care.

“I was just starting to work in the critical care unit when I realized pulmonology and intensive care were so intertwined,” he explained. “I like to think of critical care as the best in medicine. You really have to think about all of the systems of the body, how they interact and how they work together when determining the best treatment plan for each patient.”

While completing his fellowship at Cleveland Clinic, Dr. Artiles participated in a lung cancer and advanced diagnostic bronchoscopy track where he learned about a relatively new procedure - endobronchial ultrasounds (EBUS). EBUS is a minimally invasive yet highly effective procedure used to diagnose lung cancer, infections and other diseases. Dr. Artiles is now providing this service in Branson.

“Being able to offer this procedure here means patients do not have to travel outside of our community for this test, they’ll receive a diagnosis faster and begin treatment sooner,” Mahoney said.

Dr. Artiles chose to join the Cox Medical Center Branson team because he saw the opportunity to make a difference in the community.

“In the Branson area, we see a lot of diseases related to smoking,” he said. “I saw a lot of opportunities where I could make a difference in the health of the community. Since arriving, I have really enjoyed how friendly the people are as well as the beautiful landscape and lakes.”

When not working, Dr. Artiles enjoys running, playing basketball and spending time with his wife Carmen and their daughters, 1-year-old Amelia and newborn Deanna.

For more information, call 335-7559.

Allergist anticipates another tough season for allergy suffers

Sneezing, coughing, runny nose and itchy, watery eyes are common for many allergy sufferers this time of year. CoxHealth physician Brett Hronek, MD, who specializes in allergy and immunology, anticipates those who are allergic to weeds might want to pick up an extra box of tissues though this season.

“We’ve had a lot of rain again this summer which is a good indicator that we will have a lot of weeds during the late summer and early fall months,” Dr. Hronek said.

September and October is when weed pollen typically peaks, especially ragweed, which means allergy suffers could be in for a long couple of months.

“It is hard to predict what type of allergy season we will have, but the quantity of rain we receive can impact the amount of weed pollen that is in the air,” Dr. Hronek said. “Weeds are also in the air until the first freeze, so if we have a long fall, we can also have a long allergy season.”

Over-the-counter antihistamines and nasal steroids may help with sneezing and mild cases of runny nose. If allergies are severe or interfere with day-to-day activities, it’s best to seek help from an allergist.

“An allergist can help identify which specific allergens are causing symptoms,” Hronek said. “An allergist can design a treatment plan to significantly improve the patient’s symptoms and quality of life.”

To schedule an appointment with a CoxHealth allergist in Branson or Springfield, call 417-875-3742.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Skaggs Bash: Hollywood Comes to Branson set for Oct. 1

Exclusive event offers cocktail hour, fun prizes, entertainment and more

Every year, Skaggs Foundation invests thousands of dollars into the Tri-Lakes Area to support health and wellness.

The community is invited to be a part of this important effort by supporting Skaggs Foundation. On Oct. 1, Skaggs Foundation will present its largest annual fundraiser, Skaggs Bash, at Branson IMAX Entertainment Complex. Themed Hollywood Comes to Branson, the event includes a cocktail hour, hors d’oeuvres, moonshine tasting, an IMAX film, great prizes, giveaways and even “paparazzi.” Every guest will also take home a souvenir refillable popcorn container, entitling them to free popcorn refills for a year at the IMAX.

Funds raised through the bash make it possible for Skaggs Foundation to continue its mission of supporting community initiatives that improve health and wellness in Taney and Stone counties.

“In 2016, Skaggs Foundation will put more than $1 million into programs right here in Taney and Stone counties,” says Skaggs Foundation President Meghan Connell. “In this year alone, we are helping to improve the lives of literally thousands of people in our community. Through programs we support, we are helping at-risk pregnant moms and newborns, we are making it possible for children to see a dentist for the first time in their lives, and we are helping the uninsured and underinsured in our area receive the health care they need.”

To learn more about the Skaggs Bash or to reserve your seat, call 348-8002 or email RSVP by Sept. 23 for reserved seating.

CoxHealth brings new mammography technology to the Ozarks

There’s new technology in town: CoxHealth is now the first health system in Southwest Missouri to offer Genius 3D MAMMOGRAPHY exams to high-risk women, allowing tissue to be examined in far greater detail than ever before.

“This technology is revolutionary because it allows professionals to examine breast tissue layer by layer in both breasts, as opposed to a flat image,” says Susan Smith, director of CoxHealth’s Breast Care Clinic. “This way, fine details are much more visible.”

Powered by Hologic, this technology detects 41% more invasive breast cancers, and decreases recall rate by 25%. Additionally, it’s the only clinically superior breast tomosynthesis exam approved by the FDA.

The exam is currently available to CoxHealth’s highest-risk patients. However, the health system has plans of gradually rolling it out to all patients. To schedule an exam, contact the Breast Care Clinic at 417-269-6170 (Springfield) and 417-348-8313 (Branson).

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Miracle Ride 2016 to raise funds for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at CoxHealth

Riding a motorcycle can be fun – but it’s even better when it’s for a good cause. On Saturday, Oct. 1, riders will have the chance to make a difference for local kids at Miracle Ride 2016, from which all gifts and proceeds benefit Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at CoxHealth. The 50-mile scenic ride begins in Springfield and travels through the Ozarks, is escorted by local law enforcement, and also includes the chance to win a 2014 Harley-Davidson XL 1200T Sportster, a 50/50 raffle, a bike show and bike wash.

The ride begins at 10:30 a.m., and starts from the American Legion Post 639 (2660 S. Scenic Ave., Springfield). Registration is $20 in advance or $25 the day of the ride. For more information or to register, call 417-551-4823 or visit

Prostate health info night scheduled for Sept. 15

September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, so it’s a great opportunity for men to learn about prostate health – especially since, aside from skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men. That’s why, on Sept. 15, CoxHealth will hold “Prostate Cancer Treatment: Your Options,” a panel presentation led by CoxHealth physicians. All men (and spouses/friends) are invited to come and learn more about options for dealing with prostate cancer should it arise.

“One in seven men will get diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime,” says Dr. Ibrahim “Abe” Abdalla, Oncology medical director  at CoxHealth. “Thankfully, there are many treatment options available and this program is to help men learn about the options and weigh the pros and cons of the different treatments. We want men to know that there are treatment options that will retain quality of life – but that prostate cancer must be addressed in a timely fashion for them to be most effective.”  
The evening will be led by Dr. Abdalla and urologist Dr. Andrew Schultz. After the presentation is over, there will be time for questions from the audience.

The event will be held at Cox South (3801 S. National Ave., Springfield) in Foster Auditorium at 6 p.m. Heavy appetizers will be served. It is free to attend. For more information or to register, please call 417-269-5224.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Interventional cardiologist joins Cox Heart Center Branson

Cox Medical Center Branson is pleased to announce that David Lemons, DO, has joined Cox Heart
Center Branson. Dr. Lemons specializes in interventional cardiology.

“As an interventional cardiologist, Dr. David Lemons has received extensive training, education and experience in minimally invasive procedures performed on the heart and arteries,” says Cox Medical Center Branson President William Mahoney. “We are incredibly fortunate to have someone of Dr. Lemons’ caliber joining our expert team of cardiologists here in Branson.”

Dr. Lemons took what some might consider a non-traditional route on his journey to the medical field. He grew up in Jefferson City and completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Missouri – Columbia, majoring in farm management. He’s worked for the National Guard’s environmental section, conducted fisheries research and worked in a veterinary clinic. While Dr. Lemons said he loves working outdoors and with cattle, he always dreamed about being in the medical field.

In 2009, Dr. Lemons received his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree from Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed his internal medicine residency as well as his cardiology and interventional cardiology fellowships at Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center.

“From the time I started med school, I was drawn to cardiology,” Dr. Lemons explains. “It’s an exciting field that is always evolving and has a lot of good research behind it. As I see it, it’s a field where I can truly impact the lives of my patients, from improving quality of life to life saving measures.”

Dr. Lemons is joined in Branson by his wife, Dr. Lisa Lemons, a psychiatrist who has also joined the Cox Medical Center Branson team. The couple has a 5-month old son, Charlie.

"Growing up, I vacationed here several times and I really liked the area,” Dr. David Lemons said. “Branson is a good town and I’ve heard a lot of great things about the quality of care at Cox Medical Center Branson. As physicians, those things were important to my wife and I when we were making our decision.”

When not working, Dr. David Lemons enjoys fishing, hiking and running.

Dr. Lemons is seeing patients at Cox Heart Center Branson. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, call 336-4112.

Free lunch and learn focuses on women’s health

‘It’s Time for You’ features Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner Kelli Gosch

Whether it’s caring for kids, grandkids or parents, women spend much of their time caring for others.

"As women, it is easy to put our own health on the back burner when we are so busy caring for others, but really, that is the last thing women should do,” says Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner Kelli Gosch, MSN, who sees patients at the Cox Medical Center Branson Women’s Center. 

On Thursday, Sept. 29, Gosch will be the featured speaker during It’s Time for You, a free lunch and learn event from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Tree Rooms at Cox Medical Center Branson, 525 Branson Landing Boulevard.

The lunch and learn is part of the 2016 Skaggs Foundation Speaker Series and is presented by Susan G. Komen Ozark and Skaggs Foundation. Gosch will present It’s Time for You again on Thursday, Oct. 20, at Bistro 58, located inside Vino Cellars at the Lake, 15038 Business Hwy. 13, in Branson West.

“During these free lunch and learns, I’ll be sharing important information about women’s health, from breast self-awareness, and what you need to know, to pelvic health, and why women no longer have to live with embarrassing issues,” says Gosch. “I want to empower women to change their attitudes about their health and show them the power of prevention.”

While the lunch and learns are free, reservations are required. RSVP by Sept. 23 for the event at Cox Medical Center Branson on Sept. 29 or RSVP by Oct. 13 for the event at Bistro 58 on Oct. 20. Call 348-8998 or email

Monday, September 12, 2016

Pink Door Thrift Store celebrating new location with open house Sept. 19

Free gifts for first 50 guests during event

Pink Door Thrift Store will celebrate its new location in Hollister with an open house on Monday, Sept.19. Activities get underway at 10 a.m. with a ribbon cutting ceremony courtesy of Hollister Area Chamber of Commerce. The first 50 guests (18 and over) will receive a free gift from Cox Medical Center Branson volunteers.

The open house, which runs until 4 p.m. that day, offers guests an opportunity to visit the Pink Door’s new location, enjoy some bargain hunting, meet Cox Medical Center Branson volunteers and take home a treat. The Pink Door is now located at 180 Mall Road in Hollister.

“Our new location in Hollister is absolutely wonderful,” says Christine Guise, president of Cox Medical Center Branson volunteers. “The Pink Door, now conveniently located between Lowes and Country Mart, features a beautiful open space inside and ample, level parking outside. While the space is new to us, we will continue to offer the same level of quality, gently used merchandise at great prices shoppers came to know at our former location.”

Guise said shoppers will also continue to find the same friendly service at the new location.

“The Pink Door is operated solely by volunteers – volunteers who love helping people and love supporting the hospital,” she said. “Proceeds from the Pink Door help fund important purchases and projects for Cox Medical Center Branson as well as help us provide seven $1,000 scholarships every year to local students pursuing careers in health care.”

Thanks to funds raised at the Pink Door as well as at a volunteer-run gift shop, Cox Medical Center Branson volunteers have purchased wheelchairs for the hospital, equipment for the fitness center and cancer center and much more. In addition to the purchases, Cox Medical Center Branson’s dedicated group of volunteers have committed $250,000 over the next five years to help fund the emergency department and critical care unit expansion.

The Pink Door has a double mission: support local health care and provide a place where people can find great prices on items they want and need.

Normal business hours at the Pink Door are Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

CoxHealth employees: Join us for Fall Fest on Saturday, Sept. 10

Fall Fest is happening this Saturday at Silver Dollar City! Be sure to check your packets for your tickets & wristbands and get ready for this incredible day including:

• 5 Hours of Exclusive Ride Time (8:30-9:30 a.m. & 6-10 p.m.)
• Bingo, Family Feud, Live Band & Dance Party
• Exclusive Food & Merchandise Discounts

Plus - you can upgrade your event ticket to a Silver Dollar City Season Pass for just $30+tax!

Season Pass upgrades are available at CoxHealth Headquarters in the Opera House or the Rentals Booth just inside the front gate. You must present wristband for easy identification.

In addition to an exciting day of fun on 40+ rides & attractions, your Fall Fest ticket also include a night full of fun including:

• 6 p.m.: Concert from the country music icons Lonestar in the Echo Hollow Amphitheater at 6 p.m.
• 6-10 p.m.: Exclusive ride time on all of your favorite rides & attractions
• 8-10 p.m.: Put on your dancing shoes and join our Street Troupe for a dance party featuring all of your favorites like the Electric Slide, YMCA, the Chicken Dance, and Cotton-Eyed Joe!

See the full details, a schedule of events and downloadable event guides at this link.