Monday, March 31, 2014

Cox College to host a panel discussion on a book highlighting the discovery of insulin

For immediate release
March 31, 2014

Cox College will host a special diabetes panel discussion, focusing on its fifth common reader program selection, “Breakthrough, the Discovery of Insulin and the Making of a Medical Miracle by Thea Cooker and Arthur Ainsberg” by author Elizabeth Hughes.

Panelists include Dustin Reaves, a Cox College student with Type 1 Diabetes; Brandi Klepper, Psy D, Cox College; Laura Fallert, MND Cox College student; Brenda Lehr, RN, CDE, Cox College; Dana Tindell, RN, CDE, CoxHealth Diabetes Center; Jonathan Wallender, Cox College student; and Dave Carson, Cox College.

The panel discussion is Wednesday, April 2, 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Cox South, Foster Auditorium, 3801 S. National Ave., Springfield, MO. The public is invited to attend. Students are encouraged to ask their professors if their attendance can earn them extra credit.

The common reader program seeks to enhance camaraderie between students and their college community through the promotion of student activities such as reading, writing, and critical thinking. It also provides a common educational experience for general education and program-specific courses, connecting students to each other, to faculty, to other members of the college and to the educational goals and mission of the college.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

How you can help in CoxHealth's 2014 Diaper Drive

The second annual diaper drive is coming to an end and we need diapers to support local agencies that serve struggling families. Drop off your diapers at the following Price Cutter or CoxHealth locations through March 29. You can also bring a donation to the Baby Affair on Saturday, March 29 at Cox South.

Price Cutter – 8 locations in Springfield, as well as the stores in Republic, Nixa and Ozark

Country Mart – Branson, Branson West, Hollister and Forsyth
Ramey – Monett


CoxHealth, in partnership with the CoxHealth Foundation, is collecting diapers for local Diaper Bank of the Ozarks. All sizes of disposable and cloth diapers are needed. For cloth diaper information, call The Women’s Center 269-4664. The drive for both employee and public donation ends at the annual Baby Affair at Cox South on March 29. Our goal this year is to collect 10,000 diapers! Contact: Donyta Upton at 269-5087. Springfield collection bins will be available at the following locations:

Cox South: Main lobby (North entrance off Primrose), West Pavilion entrance and Turner Building main lobby
Cox North: Outpatient entrance off Robberson
Cox College: Front desk
The Meyer Center: Fitness Center lobby
Hulston Cancer Center: Allenbrand Resource Center

Cox Monett

The diaper drive at Cox Monett will benefit Crosslines of Monett and Tri-County Pregnancy Resource Center serving Stone, Barry and Lawrence counties.
Cox Monett collection location: First floor Kronos time clock and Administration, third floor. 

Cox Branson
The diaper drive at Cox Branson will benefit Jesus was Homeless in Taney County and Christian Associates in Stone County.
Cox Branson collection location: Skaggs Foundation office, Plaza One, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. or Cox Branson Administration, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Cox South hosts Leadership Springfield class

Members of Leadership Springfield’s current class made a stop at Cox South on Thursday as part of a daylong session focusing on Health and Medical Services. Leadership Springfield is a group of community leaders from a wide variety of organizations who participate in monthly educational programs highlighting different segments of the local economy.

During the visit, participants heard from CEO Steve Edwards, who spoke on the state of health care and hosted a question-and-answer session. The group also got an up-close look at the Da Vinci surgical robot and heard from Dr. Thomas Shultz, medical director for robotics.

Justin Coyan, business analyst at CoxHealth and a member of the current Leadership Springfield class, served on the planning committee for the Health and Medical Services day. This is the 29th year that Leadership Springfield has worked to educate leaders about our community, and we were honored to have hosted the group for a portion of their day.

Monday, March 17, 2014

CoxHealth highlights heart health at Kohl’s CARDIAC Kids Family Fun Night

For immediate release
March 17, 2014

CoxHealth is hosting another Kohl’s CARDIAC Kids Family Fun Night. This time the event is for the fifth grade students at Inman Intermediate School and John Thomas School of Discovery in Nixa.

Kohl’s CARDIAC Kids Family Fun Night is Thursday, March 20, at Inman Intermediate School in Nixa, 6-7:30 p.m.

The students and their families will learn about heart healthy eating. “We focus on healthy eating pertaining to fat and sugar consumption,” says Lauren Holland, Community Educator, CoxHealth. “Participants will also learn how to staying active can improve heart health, and how long and how hard you should be active.” Everyone will receive a pedometer and will prepare a healthy snack.

Kohl’s CARDIAC Kids Family Fun Night is free. Funding for the program is provided through a grant from the Kohl’s Cares Foundation. Kohl’s Cares allocates grant money through their foundation to give back to its communities and help combat childhood obesity.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

CoxHealth Foundation donates $50,000 to community prescription assistance program

From left: Lisa Alexander, President CoxHealth Foundation; Karen Kramer, Vice President/CNO CoxHealth; Jennifer Gist, Access Program Manager; Karen Brown, RN, BSN, Director Patient Assistance Programs, Mercy; Glenda Miller, Coordinator for Center for Health Improvement; Mary Beth Hartman and Tyler Watskey, CoxHealth Foundation Board of Directors

For low-income patients without prescription drug coverage, a lack of access to needed medications can lead to expensive visits to the emergency room, hospitalization and other serious health complications.

The CoxHealth Foundation has donated $50,000 to the Community Medication Access Program (CMAP), a local project working to bridge this gap for the neediest patients. CMAP connects these patients with the myriad of prescription assistance programs offered by pharmaceutical companies, and helps them manage the often arduous application process. 

“CoxHealth’s mission is to improve the health of the communities we serve,” said Lisa Alexander, CoxHealth Foundation president and CEO. “Helping our friends and neighbors access medications essential to their health fulfills this mission in a vital way."

CMAP is a joint effort of CoxHealth, Mercy, Jordan Valley Community Health Center and The Kitchen Clinic. To learn more about eligibility guidelines, contact CMAP by calling 417-820-9290 or toll free 877-480-6900.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Charlie's Fund inspires quitters

Meet a few CoxHealth staffers who are kicking the tobacco habit

Rozlyn McTeer,
Trauma Services, Cox South

Rozlyn McTeer was getting weary of thinking of herself as a smoker. For years her son had asked her to quit. She had plenty of excuses: she enjoyed smoking; it meant downtime and relaxation; and, if she quit, she might gain weight. The truth was, she was addicted.

Late in 2013 she learned about increases in insurance premiums for tobacco users. She did the math. She couldn’t afford $180 a month for insurance and her $150 smoking habit. That was the final straw. On her last birthday, the pieces fell into place.

“I thought, ‘I have to do this now.’ It will be another year of my life of smoking if I don’t make a change,” says McTeer.

On Nov. 25, the 23-year smoker traded cigarettes for e-cigarettes. She used them during the day but now the e-cigarettes stay home. Slowly, she’s being weaned off nicotine. She feels better. Food tastes better and she’s more sensitive to the smell of smoke.

“If you are a non-smoker and you are around somebody smoking, it causes you to cough and hack and it smells disgusting. It’s not something I want to do,” says McTeer. “As a nurse, I understand the health risks. And I can walk into a room and tell who is a smoker by the look on their face and by the type of skin they have. I just don’t want to be identified by that anymore.”

McTeer wants to be a role model of good health for her son and her patients. Her goal is to be off nicotine altogether by this summer.

Kate and Dave Jones,
Cox Medical Center Branson

Kate and Dave Jones have both tried to quit smoking several times, but both agree this time is different. They say this time will work for them.

“I want it to work,” says Kate Jones, Lawson system administrator in Materials Management, Cox Branson. Kate recently completed the “Freedom From Smoking” course taught by Jim Brawner (above,with the Joneses).

“I made it this long and I’m not looking back. It feels different this time than all the other times before when I tried to quit.”

By her side during the class was her husband, Dave Jones, manager, Cox Branson Security. “It’s not going to work, it has worked. I am a non-smoker,” he says. “I have more time, energy and excitement from just knowing I’m a non-smoker.”

“I knew I had to quit after taking care of a friend with lung cancer until she passed away,” says Kate.

“She never gave cigarettes up. I decided I want to live and be healthy for myself, family and friends.” She also found the support of the cessation class a necessary supplement to her efforts.

“In the classes, I wasn’t judged as a bad person. I received support and lots of love and encouragement.” Kate offers this advice to other tobacco users who have not been successful in the past: “Try it with support. Who knows, it could work this time. Give yourself the freedom!”

Marc Holderfield,
Surgery, Cox Branson

Marc Holderfield promised his son that if he placed in state in wrestling, he’d quit chewing tobacco. Congratulations are in order as his son placed second in state and Marc has successfully quit.

“I want to raise my children and be able to see my grandchildren,” explains Holderfield, who works in Surgery at Cox Branson.

“I’ve tried multiple times to quit, but this time was different. It was a real mellow process we went through versus the high stress of going cold turkey.” Holderfield used a nicotine patch and nicotine gum to help.

“I had no idea that one can of chewing tobacco equals four packs of cigarettes,” says Holderfield. He says he is now saving $80 each month by kicking his habit. Furthermore, he’s saving his life.

“I have blood pressure problems and knowing the effect nicotine has on your blood vessels, it was time to quit.”

How to help

Charlie’s Fund offers a $1,000 incentive for staffers who remain tobacco-free during 2014. The fund is named for Charlie Edwards, the late father of CoxHealth CEO Steve Edwards. 

“My dad tried everything possible to quit smoking. He never got it done,” Edwards says. “My father was the most honorable man I’ve ever known. He dedicated his career to health care, yet he struggled with smoking his entire life.”

As he was preparing to announce CoxHealth's tobacco policy change last fall, Edwards decided to pay tribute to his father and encourage others who are struggling with tobacco by creating the fund. Charlie's Fund was established through the CoxHealth Foundation with an initial donation from Edwards. In the following months, donations from hospital and community supporters have boosted the fund's total to more than $35,000.

Want to donate so more people can be inspired in 2015 and beyond? Here’s how:

Online at:

Or by payroll deduction in the employee giving program.

TAVR: 'It almost made me new again'

Ira Dove, seen here with nurse Joanie Seale, went through an intensive cardiac rehabilitation program after becoming CoxHealth’s oldest recipient of a transcatheter aortic valve replacement.

At age 95, Ira Dove wasn’t ready to slow down. Thanks to the TAVR heart procedure, he hasn’t had to.

Ira Dove may be in his mid-90s, but he’s still surprised any time he finds himself moving more slowly.

About a year ago, he noticed he was having more trouble breathing and it was getting difficult to walk even short distances.

“I wasn’t doing too good. I was getting weaker all the time,” he recalls. “I walked between ‘rest stops’ – leaning on a bucket, or a stump, whatever was handy.”

He had experienced some heart issues and had advanced aortic stenosis. He was enjoying life and he wanted to do whatever it took to stay active. Physicians had done what they could with medications and because of his advanced age, he wasn’t a candidate for a traditional valve replacement.

That’s when his cardiologist, Dr. Joseph Hills, suggested a new procedure that might be able to help. Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) is a new procedure at CoxHealth in which surgeons replace a patient’s aortic valve via catheter. CoxHealth has performed the procedure since last spring in the new hybrid operating room at Cox South.

For elderly patients like Mr. Dove, the procedure is a welcome alternative to open heart surgery.

“He made me aware of the risks and what could go wrong, and I appreciated that,” Dove says. “I said, ‘sign me up.’”

Dove had the procedure in June and after a quick three-day hospital stay, the difference became obvious.

“It almost made me new again,” he says with a laugh. He underwent cardiac rehab, which played a big role in getting him strong again. “I could breathe again. Before, I didn’t think I’d last to Christmas. But now I feel 100 percent better.”

Mr. Dove’s daughter, Sharon, a retired nurse, had seen her dad’s condition decline in the months before the procedure. She worried for his future and she knew something would have to be done.

“We realized this was the only chance he had for any quality of life,” she says. “At his age, anything could happen. We had prayed about it and we trusted that God would take care of things and that he had led us to the right people.”

Physicians had told Mr. Dove and Sharon that he was on the margin of being a good candidate for TAVR. The fact that he is active and engaged swayed them to “yes.” They wanted to do everything possible to help him have a good quality of life.

“That’s what worried me – I need to be able to do things,” he says. “I like to read, and I keep up with politics. I may be slowing down, but I’m still able to go.”

Mr. Dove enjoys the outdoors and after the TAVR procedure he’s been able to spend more time outside.

“I’ve deer hunted for a number of years. I raised all of my boys taking them deer hunting and we’ve finally gotten to where they had to take dad out deer hunting,” he says with a laugh. He made it to the woods last fall, where he bagged a doe. “I told Dr. Hills, I’m planning on going again next fall.”

In the meantime, Mr. Dove is attending church (“Heckling the pastor every chance he gets,” Sharon says), reading everything he can get his hands on and spending time with his kids, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

He’s also planning his garden for this spring – tomatoes, peppers, radishes, cucumbers and squash.

“Pulling weeds was the first job I ever had,” he says. “As long as I’m living, I’ll probably garden.”

Working outside and being able to breathe easier are everyday reminders of the improvement the TAVR procedure has made.

“If anybody is in the same situation, I would recommend it. You couldn’t go anywhere and find a better staff than here – they were wonderful,” Mr. Dove says. “We were always treated with respect and this was well worth it.”

About TAVR

More than 15 transcatheter aortic valve replacements have now been performed in CoxHealth’s hybrid OR. Aortic stenosis, which narrows the opening of the aortic valve and inhibits blood flow, is a common problem.

The TAVR procedure allows the insertion of a new aortic valve through a catheter placed in the groin or the chest. TAVR is beneficial for patients who are too frail for open-heart surgery.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Price Cutter joins CoxHealth's annual Diaper Drive

This is the second year for the event; organizers hope to collect 10,000 diapers 

For immediate release
March 10, 2014

Every year, many local babies are born to families who cannot afford necessities for their child, including diapers. Through March 29, CoxHealth in Springfield, Branson and Monett are holding a Diaper Drive to collect this, the most basic and necessary of infant supplies.

Now, Price Cutter and its affiliate stores are helping expand the efforts of the Diaper Drive by providing donation bins at their stores: Eight Price Cutter locations in Springfield, as well as the stores in Republic, Nixa and Ozark; Country Mart stores in Branson, Branson West, Hollister and Forsyth; and Ramey in Monett.

“By partnering with CoxHealth, we hope to create awareness about the growing need for diapers in our community,” says Bill Stroup, Marketing Director for Pyramid Foods (parent company of Price Cutter, Country Mart and Ramey stores). “We also hope to make it even easier for people to participate in the diaper drive by acting as a collection site in sixteen of our local stores.”

Donated disposable diapers in all sizes will be given to Diaper Bank of the Ozarks in Springfield, Crosslines and the Tri-County Pregnancy Center in the Monett area, and Jesus was Homeless and Christian Associates in the Branson area.

This year CoxHealth hopes to collect 10,000 diapers from employees and the public. In addition to the Price Cutter, Country Mart and Ramey drop-off locations, collection bins will be available during the 26th annual CoxHealth Baby Affair at Cox South on Saturday, March 29. Drop-off locations at CoxHealth facilities:


Cox South: Main lobby (North entrance off Primrose), West Pavilion entrance and Turner Building main lobby
Cox North: Outpatient entrance off Robberson
The Meyer Center: Fitness Center lobby
Hulston Cancer Center: Allenbrand Resource Center


Cox Monett: Administration, third floor, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.


Cox Branson: Skaggs Foundation office, Plaza One, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. or Cox Branson Administration, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Friday, March 7, 2014

National Sleep Awareness Week leads up to Daylight Saving Time

For immediate release
March 7, 2014
Springing forward an hour for Daylight Saving Time, Sunday, March 9, may have a few people tossing and turning, but imagine waking up every day feeling tired and fatigued. Thousands of Americans suffer from sleep disorders and many more don’t even realize they have a sleeping disorder.

“It is important patients tell their family physicians any changes in sleep patterns, history of tiredness during the day and fatigue,” says Dr. Don Brockman,  CoxHealth Family Medicine, Branson West. “Following an evaluation of a patient’s sleep patterns can help determine if additional testing at a CoxHealth Sleep Disorders Center is necessary.”

“They should also discuss concerns raised by their bed partners such as loud snoring, gasping or unusual movements during sleep,” says Dr. Stephen Clum, medical director of CoxHealth Sleep Disorders Center, Springfield. “The bottom line is, if you don’t feel like you are getting a restorative sleep at night; discuss this with your doctor.”
Dr. Dennis Daniels, medical director of Cardio-Pulmonary, Sleep Medicine and Critical Care at Cox Medical Center Branson, explains that sleep disorders can be deadly. 

“There have been studies to suggest sleeping less than 6 hours a night can lead to premature death, while others studies suggest that driving while sleepy or DWS, is as dangerous as driving while intoxicated. With this in mind it is imperative that if a person does not feel refreshed upon awakening they begin a dialogue with their health care provider immediately. Most sleep disorders are quite easily treated and the risk of ignoring a sleep problem is too great to ignore.”

All sleep-related problems are studied at CoxHealth Sleep Disorders Centers in Springfield, Branson and Monett. They include insomnia, obstructive sleep apnea, narcolepsy, shift work sleep disorder, REM sleep disorders, sleep terrors, sleep enuresis, sleep walking and sleep talking. A referral by a family medicine provider is necessary.

For more information about the CoxHealth Sleep Disorders Centers or to take a sleep quiz, visit or

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Tune in now for CMN Hospitals Radiothon

The 2014 CMN Hospitals Radiothon on Power 96.5 is now underway! Tune into Power 96.5 March 6 and 7 for the broadcast, which is taking place live from 6 a.m. – 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday in the Cox South lobby.

You will hear inspiring stories and interviews from our CMN Hospitals families. Listen in and consider becoming a miracle maker for our local kids with medical needs! Want to see how your donation helps local kids? Check out our recent coverage of equipment and services funded by CMN grants at CoxHealth.

Photographer Mike Wingo was on the scene with Power 96.5's Fotsch and McClain as they hosted The Morning Buzz on Thursday morning and he shared these images from the festivities:

CoxHealth Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals selected as charity of choice by Wendy’s of Missouri

For immediate release
Mar. 6, 2014

Wendy’s of Missouri, Inc., has selected Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at CoxHealth as its charity of choice for 2014. As a corporation that cares deeply for the welfare of children, Wendy’s of Missouri will raise funds throughout the year at each of its 34 locations to assist local children suffering from injuries and illnesses.

“By partnering with Children’s Miracle Network we look forward to having a greater impact on the lives of children in our community,” says Chuck Ocarz, president of Wendy’s of Missouri, Inc. “We anticipate great things to come from this partnership in 2014.”

“We are humbled and grateful that we were selected as Wendy’s of Missouri’s charity of choice for 2014,” says Tim Siebert, executive director of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at CoxHealth. “We depend on the generosity of businesses, individuals, foundations and organizations to bring hope and healing to children who might otherwise go without the medical attention they desperately need. We thank Wendy’s of Missouri for the care and compassion they are sharing with the children and families we serve.”

About Wendy’s of Missouri, Inc.: Wendy's of Missouri, Inc., is a Wendy’s franchisee owned by the Hamra Family and operated by Hamra Enterprises. Headquartered in Springfield, Mo., the company has eight locations in Springfield, four locations in Kansas City, three locations in Branson, two locations in Jefferson City and Columbia, and one location each in Bolivar, Ozark, Nixa, Lebanon, St. Robert, Rolla, Fulton, Lake Ozark, Clinton, Republic, Sedalia, Harrisonville, Warrensburg, Liberty and Platte City.

About CMN Hospitals at CoxHealth: CoxHealth underwrites the administrative expenses of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at CoxHealth, allowing 100 percent of donations and proceeds to be used to help local kids with medical needs. To donate to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, visit one of the Wendy’s locations listed above, or call (417) 269-5437.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Join us for the CMN Hospitals Radiothon on Power 96.5

Tune into Power 96.5 March 6 and 7 for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals’ Radiothon! It will take place live from 6 a.m.– 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday in the Cox South lobby. You will hear inspiring stories and interviews from our CMN Hospitals families. Listen in and consider becoming a miracle maker for our local kids with medical needs! Remember 100% of donations and proceeds go to our kids and stay local. For more information, check out Children's Miracle Network Hospitals of CoxHealth at this link.