Feb. 3 was the first National Women Physician Day. The date marked the 195th birthday of Elizabeth Blackwell, a courageous woman who paved the path for females in healthcare. According to the 2014 Census of Actively Licensed Physicians in the United States, only 32 percent of all physicians are female. One behalf of AAMC, I’d like to take the opportunity to thank all of AAMC’s women physicians for the exceptional care they provide to our community, and for empowering women to pursue careers in medicine.
News and Updates
Anne Arundel Medical Center recently opened its patient-centered Crohn’s and Colitis Clinic. The clinic’s multidisciplinary team includes gastroenterologists, surgeons, nutritionists and other specialists—all with focused training and experience in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) management.
“With the entire team in one clinic, everything revolves around the patient,” explains AAMC Department of Surgery Chair Adrian Park, MD. “Instead of sending patients out for consults, we collaborate as a team to help the patient. This seamless process provides a better level of care.”
The clinic’s team of experts offers broad-based treatment, including the use of innovative immune-suppressing drug therapy. Team members conduct a weekly interdisciplinary conference to discuss patients’ needs, treatment options and progress. They work closely with both the patient and the referring physician to coordinate a care plan designed to offer the best outcomes.
If the patient is already seeing a physician for Crohn’s or colitis treatment, s/he will be able to continue that relationship as part of the AAMC Crohn’s and Colitis Clinic. We provide the tools patients need to get better and will help them learn to use those tools to stay well.
We customize treatment plans to fit individual patient needs based on symptoms, severity and other characteristics of the disease. Options may include:
- Medication: A wide variety of medications are available to treat both Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
- Diet: Changes in diet and nutrition reduce irritation and aggravation of symptoms. Our nutritionist works with patients to create a detailed diet plan with support to encourage compliance.
- Surgery: Lack of response or intolerance to medications, inability to maintain diet and lifestyle changes, or presence of precancerous cells are potential reasons for surgery. A number of surgical options are available. If perforation or massive bleeding occurs, emergency surgery is usually required.
- Therapeutic trials in clinical research: We have an active and robust clinical studies and research program, which includes access to investigational therapies with close monitoring.
- Complementary and alternative medicine: Our experts are continuously studying new alternative treatments and therapies, and we are glad to discuss these options with patients.
Learn more by calling 443-481-6699 or visiting askAAMC.org/Crohns.
In February, you will begin to see and hear advertising promoting AAMC’s cardiac and vascular services. The campaign entitled “What’s Your Reason?” asks consumers to think about their personal reason for staying heart healthy, and encourages them to take a free, online heart health risk assessment. The campaign promotes the excellence and experience of AAMC’s Heart & Vascular Institute teams, as well as wellness-related classes and events. Some highlights include:
- Advertising on WTOP radio and online.
- Digital advertising, including Google advertising, and ads on health websites such as WebMD that are targeted to AAMC’s service area.
- Feature story in AAMC Magazine on our quality heart attack care.
- Print advertising in the Capital Gazette and other regional newspapers.
- “The Amazing Heart Month Race,” an internal, employee-focused Energize/physical wellbeing program for Heart Month.
The Marketing and Communications department will also be working on media opportunities to position our experts as regional leaders in heart and vascular care.
If you have any questions or suggestions about cardiac and vascular marketing, please contact Diana Troese, marketing strategist.
AAMC is participating in a clinical study. It compares treatment options for patients who have reflux symptoms, like heartburn and regurgitation, despite taking medication every day. The study compares a medical device, called LINX, against proton pump inhibitors. If you have a patient who is currently taking these medications daily and is 21 years or older, he or she may be eligible. Please contact Almaz Holmatova, MD, the study coordinator, for more information at x4943 or oholmatova@AAHS.org.
Identity theft causes major financial damage and problems. But did you know the rate of child identity theft is 35 times higher than the rate for adults—and growing? Anne Arundel Medical Center is partnering with the Maryland Hospital Association to educate parents about this troubling trend.
Each year, about 140,000 children are victims of identity theft. It happens when a thief steals a child’s personal information, like a Social Security number. The thief uses it to open credit cards or other types of criminal activity. Restoring the child’s identity may take years. Before it’s fixed, the child may be denied student loans, scholarships, jobs, credit cards and housing. There’s a simple tool for parents to protect their child’s identity: a credit freeze. Maryland law requires credit agencies to allow parents to create a credit report for their children for the purpose of freezing it. Once the report is frozen, creditors cannot access it and are less likely to approve a fraudulent attempt.
As a physician, you are a critical line of defense in protecting the wellbeing of Maryland’s children. Share this message with patients and families. Encourage them to freeze their child’s credit. For more information on how to freeze a child’s credit and warning signs of child identity theft, visit KidSafeMaryland.org. Read more.
Barry Meisenberg, MD, and the AAMC Research Institute are surveying 100 cancer patients. They hope to learn about the most common concerns or physical ailments that cause cancer patients to have unplanned admissions to the hospital. The research team will also review the charts of the patients they survey. The goal is to find ways to prevent unnecessary hospitalizations. For more information, contact Jan Clemons, RN, at 443-481-5539 or John Moxley at 443-481-5765.
The Anne Arundel Medical Group Plastic Surgery team is made up of highly-trained surgeons with expertise in all forms of reconstructive surgery, including microsurgery and cosmetic surgery. Located in the AAMC Belcher Pavilion, the team provides inpatient plastic surgery services and sees patients in the Breast Center and the AAMG Surgical Specialists office. The practice can be reached at 443-481-3400.
- Devinder Singh, MD, Chief and Medical Director of Plastic Surgery. Dr. Singh is an internationally-known plastic surgeon. He is board-certified in plastic surgery and a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the American Association of Plastic Surgeons and the Northeastern Society of Plastic Surgeons. He is the current chair of the Maryland State Board of Physicians and serves on the Maryland State Medical Society (MedChi)’s Board of Trustees. Dr. Singh is a nationally-recognized expert in the fields of complex recurrent ventral hernia repair and wound care. He specializes in cosmetic surgery of the breast and abdomen as well as surgery repair. He completed his residency at Yale University for a combined residency in general and plastic surgery in New Haven, Conn. He attended medical school at Columbia University in New York.
- Tripp Holton, MD, Director of Microvascular Surgery. Dr. Holton is a board-certified, fellowship-trained plastic and reconstructive surgeon. He has extensive expertise in reconstructive microsurgery including reconstruction of the head and neck, breast and extremities. He focuses on breast and body contouring as well as facial aesthetic surgery. Dr. Holton is also active in research in the areas of biomaterials and biotechnology. He completed a fellowship in plastic and reconstructive surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Md. He completed a residency in general surgery at University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore, Md. He attended medical school at Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, Pa.
- Virginia Lobach, PA-C. Virginia joined the AAMG Plastic Surgery department after completing a one-year surgical residency at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Virginia completed her physician assistant training at the University of Kentucky and received a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from College of Charleston in South Carolina.
On Oct. 1, we went live with the federally-mandated ICD-10 diagnosis and procedure codes. The implementation here at AAMC was a huge success. We experienced no delays in payments related to the transition. The coding team has not seen an increase in the need for provider queries and has been performing at a higher rate of productivity than predicted. There have been minimal impacts to outpatient scheduling or registration workflows related to diagnoses provided. Thank you to our medical staff and employees for your diligence and commitment to making this a successful transition.