---------------https://medicalinsider.holy-cross.com-----------
 

Medical Insider Blog

Helpful Tips for Avoiding the Flu

  • Posted Sep 12, 2018
  • Christine Walker

Did you know that according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) each year between 5 and 20 percent of U.S. citizens contract the flu and the virus causes more than 200,000 hospitalizations and as many as 49,000 deaths?

Flu season is fast approaching and, thankfully, flu prevention begins with a variety of things we can easily do to protect ourselves, our patients and our loved ones from becoming ill.

According to the CDC and Mental Health America, the following are things you can do to protect yourself and others from the flu:

•             Get a flu vaccine – the CDC cites the yearly flu vaccine as the first and most important step in protecting against flu viruses. Ask for your flu vaccination at your Holy Cross Medical Group doctor's office.

•             Take everyday precautions to stop the spread of germs – wash your hands, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you sneeze and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

•             Take antiviral drugs if your doctor prescribes them. If you get the flu, antiviral drugs can treat your illness. They make illness milder and shorten the time you are sick. They may also prevent serious flu complications.

•             Another great way to reduce your risk of developing illness is by maintaining a positive mental and spiritual attitude. According to Mental Health America, there is a connection between spirituality and health. Spirituality can reduce the stress that often drives illness.

When you’re being treated for or trying to prevent a disease or condition like the flu, it may not always be easy to decide where to go for care.

For anything that is considered a life-threatening situation (like chest pain or sudden and severe pain) it’s best to go to the emergency room. For less severe matters that still require immediate attention, if you can’t get in to see your primary care physician (PCP), going to an urgent care facility can save you time and money.

Even if you require emergency or urgent care for your health situation, it’s always best to have a relationship with a PCP who knows your history and understands what is happening with your health over time. If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life. [Disclaimer: Trinity Health is a Catholic health care facility that is firmly committed to maintaining fidelity to its Catholic identity by closely conforming to the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (ERDs).

CDC.gov, Mental Health America and the links they provide are independent sites and have no obligation to provide information that is always congruent with the ERDs. Trinity Health cannot guarantee their content and ask for your discretion when using information from this site.]


Immunizations Are Preventive Care for All Ages

  • Posted Sep 05, 2018
  • hchadmin

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the U.S., vaccination programs have eliminated or significantly reduced many vaccine-preventable diseases. However, some of these diseases still exist and may once again become common — and deadly — if we don’t get the vaccinations we need and when we need them. Holy Cross Hospital would like to encourage you to care for yourself and your loved ones by reminding you of the importance of immunizations.

Immunizations aren’t just for youngsters. The CDC says we all need them to help protect us, our patients and coworkers from serious diseases and illness. In fact, according to the CDC, everyone over the age of six months needs a seasonal flu shot every year. The seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to protect yourself and others from the flu.

Other vaccinations work best when they are given at certain ages. Here are some general guidelines from the CDC:

Young children:
•    Children under age six get a series of shots to protect against measles, polio, chicken pox and hepatitis.

Preteens:
•    All 11- and 12-year-olds need shots to help protect against tetanus, diphtheria, whooping cough and meningitis.
•    Doctors recommend girls also get the HPV vaccine to protect against the most common cause of cervical cancer.

Adults:
•    All adults need a tetanus shot every 10 years.
•    People age 65 need a one-time pneumonia shot.

Talk to your doctor or nurse about which shots you and your family need.

Besides preventing you and others from getting sick, there’s another great benefit associated with getting immunized. For a complete list of immunizations and a schedule for receiving them, visit the CDC Immunization Schedules website. 

To ensure vaccines are held to the highest standard of safety and efficacy, the CDC has measures in place to test and continuously monitor them. To learn more, visit the CDC Vaccine Safety website. 

Having a primary care physician (PCP), who can coordinate your care, including preventive care and immunizations, is vital to your good health. A PCP typically specializes in family medicine, internal medicine or general practice. If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you live your whole life.

[Disclaimer: Trinity Health is a Catholic health care facility that is firmly committed to maintaining fidelity to its Catholic identity by closely conforming to the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (ERDs). CDC.gov and the links it provides are independent sites and have no obligation to provide information that is always congruent with the ERDs. Trinity Health cannot guarantee their content and ask for your discretion when using information from this site.]


Photo by Mario Purisic on Unsplash

categories: 

Protecting Yourself and Others from Illness

  • Posted Aug 28, 2018
  • hchadmin

Did you know that according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccines have prevented countless cases of infectious diseases and saved millions of lives? Holy Cross Hospital encourages you to care for yourself, and your loved ones, by reminding you of the importance of immunizations as preventive care. 

According to the CDC, vaccines can protect both the people who receive them and those with whom they come in contact. Vaccines are responsible for the control of many infectious diseases that were once common. A vaccine actually eradicated smallpox, one of the most devastating diseases in history.
But, how do they work?

When germs invade the body, they cause an infection. Once your body fights off the infection, you're left with a supply of cells that help recognize and fight that disease in the future, according to the CDC.

The CDC also says that a vaccination is designed to help your body create these cells to fight the disease by introducing a weakened form of the disease into your body. Your body then makes antibodies to fight the invaders so if the disease ever attacks you, your antibodies will destroy them.

To ensure vaccines are held to the highest standard of safety and efficacy, the CDC has measures in place to test and continuously monitor them. To learn more, visit the CDC Vaccine Safety website and read the Immunization Action Coalition's Healthcare Personnel Vaccination Recommendations.

Besides preventing you and others from getting sick, if you’re enrolled in Trinity Health medical benefits most immunizations are 100 percent covered. For a complete list of immunizations and a schedule for receiving them, visit the CDC Immunization Schedules website.

Another great way to give a boost to your physical health is by maintaining your spiritual health through visualization. Visualization engages the imagination by thinking of a scene, a thought or a belief in our minds. This practice has been shown to decrease stress, blood pressure, manage chronic pain and promote general healing.

Additionally, screenings and regularly scheduled vaccinations are important in sustaining your health. Having a primary care physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. A PCP typically specializes in family medicine, internal medicine or general practice.

If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life. [Disclaimer: Trinity Health is a Catholic health care facility that is firmly committed to maintaining fidelity to its Catholic identity by closely conforming to the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (ERDs). CDC.gov, Immunize.org and the links they provide are independent sites and have no obligation to provide information that is always congruent with the ERDs. Trinity Health cannot guarantee their content and ask for your discretion when using information from these sites.]

 

Photo by Filip Mroz on Unsplash


Helpful Tips for Those Living with Skin Cancer

  • Posted Jul 17, 2018
  • Christine Walker

Learning you or a loved one has skin cancer changes your life.

According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), concerns about treatments, managing side effects and medical bills are common. You may also worry about caring for your family or continuing daily activities.

The NCI and Holy Cross Hospital offer the following suggestions to help you focus on your treatment and maintain a Healthy Spirit:

•    Doctors, nurses, and other members of your health care team can answer questions about treatment, working or other activities. As part of the team's services, you may receive an outreach call. Please remember to return the call if you miss it.

•     Support groups also can help. In these groups, people with skin cancer or their family members meet with other patients or their families to share what they have learned about coping with the disease and the effects of treatment. Groups may offer support in person, over the telephone or on the internet. You may want to talk with a member of your health care team about finding a support group.

When you’re being treated for a health condition, it may not always be easy to decide where to go for care when you need it. For anything that is considered a life-threatening situation (like chest pain or sudden and severe pain) it’s best to go to the emergency department.

For less severe matters that still require immediate attention, if you can’t get in to see your primary care physician (PCP), going to an urgent care facility can save you time and money.

Even if you require emergency or urgent care for your health situation, it’s always best to have a relationship with a PCP who knows your history and understands what is happening with your health over time.

If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

tags: 

Regular Screenings Can Help Catch Skin Cancer Early

  • Posted Jul 10, 2018
  • Christine Walker

Did you know that, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the main cause of skin cancer is being exposed to ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun? 

Warm summer weather often means taking part in more outdoor activities. While it’s important to take opportunities to be more active, when it comes to being out in the sun, be sure to take care of your skin. 

As a component of summer safety, Holy Cross Hospital encourages you to care for yourself and your loved ones by reminding you of the importance of regular skin screenings.

Your primary care physician (PCP) or other health care professional might advise that you perform routine skin self-exams to check for the development of any unusual changes.

According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the best time to do this is after a shower or bath. Check your skin in a room with plenty of light and use a full-length mirror and a hand-held mirror to learn where your birthmarks, moles, and other marks are as well as their usual look and feel.

If you find anything that looks unusual, such as a sore that won’t heal, a new mole that is different from others or a change in the way one of your moles looks, it’s time to make an appointment with your doctor.

Having a PCP who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. A PCP typically specializes in family medicine, internal medicine or general practice. 

If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions. 

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.

 

Regular Health Screenings Can Help Keep Men Well

  • Posted Jun 12, 2018
  • hchadmin

Man working at desk

Balancing a busy career, family and personal life can leave men with little time to even think about their health, let alone schedule (and keep) an appointment for their annual health screenings.

In fact, the U.S. Department of Health and Human services has found that men are 24 percent less likely than women to have visited a doctor within the past year and are 22 percent more likely to have neglected their cholesterol tests.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), regular exams and screenings can help save lives. They can help find problems early, when the chances for treatment, and perhaps even a cure, are better.

That’s why, during Men’s Health Month, Holy Cross Hospital would like to encourage you to care for yourself, or the men in your life, by reminding you of the importance of regular health screenings.

The National Institutes of Health list, on their website, the tests and screenings that experts recommend for men at various stages of their lives:

•    Health screenings for men ages 18-39
•    Health screenings for men ages 40-64
•    Health screenings for men ages 65 and older

Federal law requires that all health insurance plans cover specific preventive care services, including vaccinations, some disease screenings and certain types of counseling. In addition to participating in annual screenings, having a primary care physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health.

A PCP typically specializes in Family Medicine, Internal Medicine or General Practice. If you don’t have a PCP, it’s easy to find one. Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.

[Disclaimer: Trinity Health is a Catholic health care facility that is firmly committed to maintaining fidelity to its Catholic identity by closely conforming to the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (ERDs). http://www.nlm.nih.gov and the links it provides are independent sites and have no obligation to provide information that is always congruent with the ERDs. Trinity Health cannot guarantee their content and ask your discretion when using information from this site.]

categories: 

Men's Health: Lifestyle Improvements and Self-Care Help Prevent Disease

  • Posted Jun 05, 2018
  • hchadmin



June is Men’s Health Month and Holy Cross Hospital encourages you to care for yourself, and your loved ones, by reminding you, or the men in your life, of the importance of taking the necessary steps to jumpstart positive lifestyle changes that will improve all aspects of well-being – body, mind and spirit.

Trying to "do it all" and "have it all" and the hyper competitive means some use to achieve those goals can leave many of us burned out physically, mentally and spiritually. So consider self-care and well-being habits as investments in yourself – investments with a high rate of return in the form of a happier, healthier more productive you.

Lifestyle modification can consist of a variety of strategies such as healthier eating, exercise and physical activity, getting adequate sleep, reducing stress and spiritual fulfillment. However, it's important to remember that no two men are the same and you should tailor whatever strategies you use to your own life and goals.

Ensuring that you get enough physical activity will go a long way toward improving your overall quality of life. Although the benefits of physical activity far outweigh the possibility of adverse outcomes, you should still start gradually and perform the types of physical activity that are appropriate for your current fitness level. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recommends the following activities for adults:

•    Do at least 150 minutes (two hours and 30 minutes) per week of moderate-intensity, or 75 minutes (one hour and 15 minutes) per week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity.
•    Perform muscle-strengthening activities that are moderate or high intensity and involve all major muscle groups on two or more days a week.
•    Do activities that you enjoy, be it weightlifting, walking, yoga, swimming or biking...because almost any exercise is helpful. 

Men's busy schedules can sometimes make it difficult to eat correctly. However, proper nutrition is a key component of any strategy to live healthier. Keep these guidelines in mind when planning your meals:

•    Eat three meals a day. Meals should consist primarily of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Choose lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts.
•    Control portion sizes. Take time to enjoy smaller amounts of food.
•    Limit foods high in salt, saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol and added sugar.
•    If you drink alcohol, drink it in moderation.
•    Stay hydrated by drinking enough water.

While it's important to know the physical aspects of disease prevention, knowing how to maintain a healthier spirit is important as well. Keep these things in mind:

•    Remain optimistic. Research shows that happiness and a positive attitude are associated with lower rates of disease. Focus on your thoughts — stop negative ones and replace them with positive ones.
•    Control stress. Stress relievers like deep breathing and muscle relaxation exercises, and keeping a journal, can be helpful in controlling the impact stress has on your body.
•    Do everything in moderation. Don’t try to do too much at one time – make sure to have time for proper nutrition, sleep, work and play.
•    Create a network. Maintaining a close circle of family and friends can provide you with support when you need it.

Lastly, getting annual screening tests from your primary care physician (PCP) is vital to sustaining your health and helping prevent or control health conditions. Having a PCP who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.

 

Photo: Jenny Hill


Physical Activity Offers Great Benefits to Those Living with a Health Condition

  • Posted May 01, 2018
  • hchadmin

Did you know that according to the American Heart Association (AHA), active people who have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes or other chronic health conditions are more likely to live healthier for a longer period of time than inactive people with the same conditions?

Actve children


The American Diabetes Association (ADA) says that physical activity can help lower your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol levels. It also reduces your risk for stroke, relieves stress and anxiety and strengthens your heart, muscles and bones.

These benefits are important for everyone, but especially for those with chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes and depression.

Because of the symptoms they experience, those who live with illness may find it challenging to get regular physical activity. The ADA and AHA offer the following tips:
•    Look for opportunities to be more active during the day. Walk the mall before shopping, take the stairs instead of the escalator or take 10–15 minute breaks for walking or some other activity while watching TV or sitting.
•    Don't get discouraged if you stop for a while. Get started again gradually and work up to your old pace.
•    Don't participate in physical activities right after meals or when it's very hot or humid.
•    It is recommended that diabetics check blood glucose before and after activity (if it’s too low, eat a piece of fruit, a few crackers or drink a glass of milk) and carry a snack to eat if you’ll be active for a few hours or more. If you have one, wear your medical alert I.D.
•    You can do this even if you've been sedentary for a long time, are overweight, have a high risk of coronary heart disease or some other chronic health condition. See your doctor for a medical evaluation before beginning a physical activity program.

In addition to getting regular physical activity, developing and maintaining a relationship with a primary care physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health.

A PCP typically specializes in family medicine, internal medicine or general practice. If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

When you’re being treated for a health condition, it may not always be easy to decide where to go for care. For anything that is considered a life-threatening situation (like chest pain or sudden and severe pain) it’s best to go to the emergency room. For less severe matters that still require immediate attention, if you can’t get in to see your PCP, going to an urgent care facility can save you time and money.

Even if you require emergency or urgent care for your health situation, it’s always best to have a relationship with a PCP who knows your history and understands what is happening with your health over time.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote well-being through body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.


Maintaining Good Prenatal Care Key to Healthy Pregnancy

  • Posted Apr 25, 2018
  • hchadmin

Are you, or someone you know, expecting or planning to get pregnant? If so, it's important to remember that having a healthy pregnancy is one of the best ways to have a healthy baby. Getting early and regular prenatal care improves the chances of a healthy pregnancy.

It is essential to maintain regular medical care during pregnancy (including regular check-ups and prenatal testing).

Most women visit their health care providers once a month for the first 28 weeks and then every two to three weeks until week 37. After that, you will most likely have weekly appointments until the baby is born. However, the schedule may vary depending on the preferences of your individual health care provider and medical needs.

Prenatal visits with your health care provider may include:
• Review of medical history
• Completion of various blood tests, urine analysis and lab work
• Taking your blood pressure and listening to the baby's heartbeat
• Suggestions for a nutritional plan, including prenatal vitamins
• Developing an exercise strategy

Good prenatal care can help keep you and your baby healthy, as well as alert your health care provider of any potential health concerns. Early detection and treatment can remedy many problems and prevent others. Contact your health plan to see if they have any special programs for expectant mothers.

Visit  to learn more about the Doreen Koenig Blessed Beginnings Maternity Unit at Holy Cross Hospital, which recently earned prestigious international designation as a Baby-Friendly Designated birth facility.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to helping you Live Your Whole Life by nurturing well-being through body, mind and spirit.

tags: 
categories: 

Awareness is Key to Addressing Chemical Dependency

  • Posted Apr 17, 2018
  • hchadmin

 pile of coloful pills

The numbers are sobering. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) reported that, in 2016, approximately 20.1 million people aged 12 or older had a substance use disorder (SUD) related to their use of alcohol or illicit drugs in the past year, including 15.1 million people who had an alcohol use disorder and 7.4 million people who had an illicit drug use disorder. Additionally, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2016, more than 64,000 Americans died from overdosing on illicit drugs and prescription opioids. This number has nearly doubled in a decade.

SUDs occur when the recurrent use of alcohol and/or drugs causes clinically significant impairment, including health problems, disability, and failure to meet major responsibilities at work, school or home. Addiction is a complex disease, and quitting usually takes more than good intentions or a strong will. Drugs change the brain in ways that make quitting hard, even for those who want to.

Awareness about the scope of chemical abuse and dependency and the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual toll it takes is one component, along with prevention and treatment to improving the lives of affected individuals.

There is good news regarding prevention. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)-funded research has shown that prevention programs involving families, schools, communities, and the media are effective for preventing or reducing drug use and addiction.

Treatment for chemical dependency generally isn’t a cure. However, addiction is treatable and can be successfully managed. According to NIDA, treatment should be ongoing and should be adjusted based on how the patient responds. Treatment plans need to be reviewed often and modified to fit the patient’s changing needs.

If you or a loved one is struggling with chemical dependency, don’t hesitate to reach out. Help is available. Contact your PCP who can help coordinate your care and refer you to a specialist, if needed. If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.

tags: 
categories: 

Pages


About Holy Cross Hospital

Holy Cross Hospital is a nonprofit, Catholic hospital in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, dedicated to innovative, high quality and compassionate care. For nearly six decades, Holy Cross has continuously expanded its services to provide leading-edge care for their patients in Florida and for those from elsewhere in the United States. Holy Cross also offers an International Services program to ensure that patients from outside the U.S. receive the care they need.

Blog Categories

Blog Archive