Friday, August 21, 2015

CoxHealth volunteer teams turn out for Day of Caring

Team members from CoxHealth, Cox College and the CoxHealth Young Professionals made a difference in our community on Thursday by taking part in the United Way Day of Caring. The groups worked at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield, the Council of Churches of the Ozarks and Sunshine Elementary School. Meanwhile, more than 60 CoxHealth volunteers worked on three Habitat for Humanity projects. 

At Cox Branson, a dozen staff members took on painting and landscaping at the Bridge of Faith Church in Rockaway Beach.

Our thanks to everyone who took the time to make a difference in our community!


Thursday, August 20, 2015

Tobacco Treatment Specialist celebrating 100 'quits'

Evon McKim received her “Certificate of Quitting” from Jim Brawner after completing Brawner’s Tobacco Cessation Class and conquering her smoking habit.

More than 100 people are breathing better and living healthier lives thanks to the work of Mayo Clinic Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist Jim Brawner. Brawner, who teaches Tobacco Cessation Classes at Cox Medical Center Branson, celebrated his 100th “quit” at the end of one of his summer classes.

Brawner taught his first Tobacco Cessation Class in April 2013.

“Through these classes, I have had the opportunity to help change lives,” he said. “If you help one tobacco user, you help the lives of those who live with them and around them.”

Brawner explained that he has witnessed the compound effect that came from helping one couple quit, which then led to three of their family members quitting as well.

“By helping someone quit, you increase not only their health, but their income -- a win-win,” he said. “That family of five that quit had spent more than $250,000 collectively in their past on tobacco use. They are thriving and not just surviving.”

Forsyth resident Evon McKim understands what it means to thrive and not just survive.

McKim, who had smoked for years, was able to quit once before. Following a divorce and the loss of her father however, McKim soon found herself using cigarettes to cope. Since McKim and her husband, Ray McKim, reunited he has been encouraging his wife to give up her tobacco habit for good.

“When I quit the first time, I just sat them down and walked away,” she said. “This time, I couldn’t do that. I wanted to though.”

Her husband, a truck driver, had told his wife she could ride along with him on his trips across the country only after she quit smoking. That is when Evon McKim turned to Brawner and signed up for the eight-session Tobacco Cessation Class. With Brawner’s help, Evon McKim was able to quit her tobacco habit and now she’s happy to be traveling with husband this summer.

“I owe a lot to Jim,” she said.

Evon McKim is not only getting to travel and spend time with her husband, but she’s feeling better too. She’s swimming daily and breathing easier.

The next Tobacco Cessation Class begins Monday, Aug. 24, at 3 p.m. in Branson. On Monday, Sept. 14, a morning session and an evening session will also begin in Branson. The class is $80 and scholarships are available. Call 417-348-8498.

For information about Tobacco Cessation Classes in Springfield, call 417-269-4847 or in Monett, call 417-354-1100.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Follow Baby Nora's journey on Facebook

Baby Nora was born very early, weighing less than one pound. She was strong and resilient from the moment she arrived at 22 weeks, 6 days gestation. Our Marketing team is documenting her journey as she's cared for at the Dee Ann White Women's and Children's Hospital at Cox South. You can follow her journey as it unfolds in our NICU by following

Cancer survivor creates care bags for Cox Branson patients

Ellen Young, left, presents 20 cancer care bags to Marcy Keltner, with CoxHealth Cancer Center Branson. Young, a breast cancer survivor, and her daughter, Elizabeth Williams, donated the bags to the Branson center and plan to make more for other cancer center locations.

A cancer diagnosis is devastating and for many patients, the road to recovery often includes chemotherapy, radiation and surgeries throughout the battle. Ellen Young, an associate administrative director for CoxHealth, and her daughter-in-law Jill Young know the battle all too well – they are breast cancer survivors.

Understanding the battle that other women are facing, Ellen Young wanted to do something with her family that would give hope and encouragement to women currently fighting cancer.

Together, Ellen Young and her daughter Elizabeth Williams, a Thirty-One consultant, recently donated 20 beautiful cancer care bags to CoxHealth Cancer Center Branson to be distributed to cancer patients.
“If through these bags we can encourage these ladies and let them know we’ve been there and there is a light at the end of the tunnel, we want to do that,” Ellen Young said. “We want them to know there is someone who cares and there is hope.”

Each Thirty-One tote bag was filled with a blanket, footies, lotion, crossword puzzle book, pen, mints, soaps, hand sanitizer, sweet and salty snacks, and bottled water with flavoring.

"During our journeys, we were blessed to have the support of family and friends as well as the financial means to provide for our comfort,” Ellen Young said. “Many aren’t that fortunate.”

Cox Branson Patient Navigator Marcy Keltner distributed the first bags and said the gifts were enthusiastically welcomed by patients.

“It is a wonderful feeling to watch the patient’s face light up and then the tears start to fall as they are overcome with gratitude that someone who does not know them would do something so kind and thoughtful,” Keltner said. “They love these beautiful bags filled with comfort items.”

Ellen Young and Williams plan to donate more care bags and will include other CoxHealth locations in the future. If in anyone is interested in helping the mother and daughter pair provide care bags for CoxHealth cancer patients, please contact Ellen Young at 417-875-2720.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Meet the physical therapists at CoxHealth Ozark Therapy Services during open house

CoxHealth Ozark Therapy Services welcomes the community to an open house, Thursday, August 13 at 5:30 p.m.

The physical therapy clinic at 1725 S. 15th Street in Ozark opened in April, treating patients for orthopedic needs, sports rehabilitation, dizziness, women’s health issues, and Parkinson’s disease.

“It’s important that patients with sports or orthopedic injuries, dizziness, or Parkinson’s disease to have access to physical therapy services close to home. That’s why we’re excited about our new clinic in Ozark,” says Michael Hobus, MPT, Manager, CoxHealth. “Our open house is a great opportunity for our community to meet our staff and get a better understanding of how we can help them.”

Jenna Kure, DPT, MBA, TPI certified, is the primary physical therapist at this clinic and is LSVT BIG Certified. “This means she is trained in the treatment protocol for individuals with Parkinson ’s disease,” says Hobus.

She is also certified to treat and help prevent injuries of local golfers. “As a Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) certified instructor, she is able to treat golf-specific injuries and to help prevent future injuries through rehabilitation techniques using biomechanical analysis to improve performance and obtain longevity in the sport,” explains Hobus.

During the open house, also meet Crystal Warren, PT. She will offer women’s health services that help address incontinence, pelvic pain, prolapse, and constipation issues.

CoxHealth Ozark Therapy Services welcomes physician referrals and is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

North entrance driveway at Cox South closed to vehicles during construction

The driveway in front of Cox South's North Entrance will be closed to vehicle traffic beginning Monday, Aug. 10.

As part of the facility improvements happening on the Cox South campus, the canopy at the North Entrance of the hospital will be rebuilt. This construction at the North Entrance will lead to temporary changes that will affect our patient discharge process.

Although the North Entrance will remain open during the construction project, beginning Monday, Aug. 10, the North Entrance drive will be closed to vehicle traffic. The entrance will remain open to foot traffic.

Discharged patients will be available for pickup at either of the entrances on the west side of the hospital – the West Pavilion Entrance or the West Tower Entrance.  The East Entrance (along National by the former ED) will also be available for use for discharging patients, if needed.

The expected timeframe for the completion of the canopy project is two months.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Partners Spirit honoree: Pat Long

PARTNERS Spirit recognizes an employee, volunteer, physician or Cox College nursing student who has made a significant contribution to the benefit of CoxHealth, an individual or the community. PARTNERS behaviors generally demonstrate everyday excellence or exceed the employee's normal job duties.

Pat Long, Volunteer Services, Springfield

From the nomination: “A couple of months ago, my father dropped off my mother at Cox North and told her he would be back shortly. He left to run some errands and while he was gone, he had a heart attack and passed away. My mother was sitting in the lobby waiting for him to pick her up. They don’t have a cell phone, so she did not know what was going on.

Pat passed by her several times and spoke to her each time. At lunch, Pat asked if she would like something to eat. Since my mother did not have any money, she said no. Pat went to the cafeteria and brought my mom lunch anyway. Pat visited with her that afternoon and finally asked if she could take her home.

My mother lives in Lebanon and Pat drove her home, where Pat asked to help her inside. There was a message on the answering machine from my mom’s sister. Pat was able to call my aunt when she was informed of my dad’s passing. Pat took my mother to my aunt’s house where she was given the news. My family is very touched by Pat’s kindness and compassion. Thank you, Pat.”

Valet service: 'Everyone has the best spot'

Valet Connor Kennedy says guests at Cox South are “ecstatic” about the free parking service CoxHealth is providing. The service is available at the North Entrance and the West Tower Entrance from 7 a.m.-7 p.m., Monday- Friday.

In the first hours of the new valet service at Cox South in Springfield, valet Connor Kennedy was already seeing the benefits to our patients and guests.

“They are ecstatic,” says Kennedy. “It’s great for the people who don’t have the ability to walk all that far because this parking lot does get very full. We’ve had people come in with crutches and elderly people who don’t have to worry now about parking and walking very far.”

The valet service is a safe and secure way to manage parking on our busy campus, especially with the opening of the tower expansion. The service helps us address a longstanding issue on the Cox South campus: there are enough parking spaces, but many of them are located far from the main entrances. The use of valets solves the issue, at a cost that is more affordable than adding new parking lots or garages.

The valet service is operating now at both the North Entrance and West Tower Entrance at Cox South for our patients and guests. We have recently extended the service to our volunteer force.

CoxHealth is the only health system in Springfield to offer valet service. The service is free to customers and is available at the North Entrance and West Tower Entrance of Cox South from 7 a.m. - 7 p.m., Monday – Friday.

The new West Tower serves patients and guests of the Dee Ann White Women’s and Children’s Hospital and the Jared Neuroscience Center, which includes neurosurgery, neurology, neuropsychology and physiatry clinics.

“We won’t have people maneuvering through parking lots in wheelchairs or crutches, which will reduce the risk of falls or accidents with vehicles,” says Eric Clay, system director of Public Safety and Security. “Now they can drop off their car right in front of the hospital and see their loved one or get to their appointment on time because they won’t spend time looking for a parking space.”

The valets with our vendor, Springfield Parking Company, watch as drivers slow down in front of the entrance. If guests want to use the service, valets take the keys and hand the driver a valet ticket.

As the guests walk in, the valet drives the vehicle to one of the underutilized parking areas, such as the top level of the parking garage, the Kings Avenue parking lot and the former Maples lot across from the North Entrance.

Customers are instructed to text a message to the number on their valet ticket 15 minutes before they are ready to leave, alerting the valet to retrieve their vehicle. The goal is for customers to walk out to find their vehicle waiting for them.

“It’s like building a parking garage that has an infinite number of spaces right at your front door,” says Alex Scott, owner of Springfield Parking Company. “Everyone using the valet service always has the best parking spot.”