Pisgah Family Health

PISGAH FAMILY

HEALTH NEWS

December 2008

OFFICE NEWS

MEDICAL NEWS

CONTACT US

www.PisgahFamilyHealth.com/

EMAIL

About the Newsletter

Merry Christmas


Merry Christmas

PFH Office Staff wish you a Merry Christmas

Dr. Curran, Tami, Julie, and Kacey wish you and your family a healthy and happy holiday season.

Office Hours

  • Our normal office hours are 9-5 Monday through Thursday, and 9-12 on Friday.
  • We will be closed for Christmas on December 24, 25, and 26.
  • We will be closed for New Year's Day on January 1, 2009.
  • We will be closed on Friday, February 13, 2009.
  • When the office is closed, emergency care is available at the Urgent Care Centers, and at Mission/St. Joseph hospitals ER.  Telephone calls are handled by Dr. Curran’s call partners. Dr. Curran shares call with seven local physicians who are all board certified in Family Medicine, and can admit patients to Mission hospitals.
  • Our answering service can be reached after hours at 251-4873.

Office Reminders

  • Please call 24 hours in advance if you are unable to keep your scheduled appointment.
  • As the new year approaches, many insurance companies mail new updated insurance cards. Please remember to bring your insurance card to your next visit and present it to the receptionist when you check in. This ensures we have the most current insurance information for you.
  • If you have a form that needs completion by Dr Curran during your physical exam, please fill out your section(s) prior to your appointment.
  • Please refrain from using your cell phone while in our office. If you must use your phone, step outside.

Medicare Part D

The annual enrollment period for Medicare Part D is about to end. Be sure to review your coverage.

You can join a Medicare drug plan when you first become eligible for Medicare and each year from November 15th through December 31st. However, if you lose your current creditable prescription drug coverage, you will also be eligible for a two (2) month Special Enrollment Period (SEP) to join a Medicare drug plan.


Medical news

December is Safe Toys Month

The holiday season is the time when most of the toys and games are purchased. Here are some tips for buying safe toys for children.

  • When selecting toys, consider the child's age, interests and skill level. Look for quality design and construction, and follow age and safety recommendations on labels.
  • Consider purchasing a small parts tester to determine whether small toys may present a choking hazard to children under age 3. Small parts testers can be purchased at toy or baby specialty stores.
  • Toys are frequently recalled for safety reasons. You can check the website http://www.recalls.gov for updates and information on recent toy recalls.
  • Use mylar balloons instead of latex to eliminate the risk of choking or latex allergy reaction.
  • Avoid toys with sharp points or edges, toys that produce loud noises, and projectiles (such as darts)
  • Avoid toys with strings, straps or cords longer than 7 inches that may pose a risk for strangulation for young children.
  • Avoid electrical toys with heating elements for children under age 8.
  • Avoid cap guns. Caps can be ignited and can cause serious burns.

Don't Drink and Drive

Pisgah Family Health would like to remind everyone to be safe this holiday season, and to always remember not to drink and drive.

If you plan on drinking, or have already been drinking alcohol, take steps to avoid driving while intoxicated. Most importantly, plan ahead!

  • Know your limit. One drink per hour for women or two drinks per hour for men is enough to become intoxicated.
  • Designate a sober driver before drinking.
  • Give your keys to a friend or DD before drinking.
  • Call a cab.
  • If the destination is nearby, walk home.
  • Stay the night.

Don't be fooled - there are many things that won't work to help you drive sober:

  • Eating
  • Drinking coffee or caffiene.
  • Rolling down the window.

No matter how sober you feel, or how well you can "hold your liquor", no one should drive after drinking. If you do, you will put yourself and others at risk. If you don't drink and drive, you just might save a life.

www.sadd.com

Viruses in Town

Influenza

The Influenza virus was identified this week in 6 schoolchildren in Haywood county. It has not yet appeared in Buncombe, Madison, or Henderson counties, but is likely to be close behind. The "Flu Season" is usually heaviest in January and February.

If you have not yet gotten your Flu shot for the season, please hurry. We are likely to ecounter the Influenza virus soon. The vaccination takes about 3 weeks to reach maximum effectiveness. Pisgah Family Health has vaccinated almost 300 patients so far, and has 20 shots left as of December 19.

If you have symptoms of Influenza, which include fever, fatigue, aching, and upper respiratory illness, it is too late for the vaccination. However, you may benefit from Tamiflu or other antiviral medications if started within the first 3 days of the illness.

Adenovirus

We are in the middle of an outbreak of adenovirus. This virus causes cold-like symptoms, including sinusitus and bronchitis. Adults and children are equally susceptible. This illness is easily spread by airborne particles. We have been seeing 3-4 cases per day at Pisgah Family Health. Symptoms usually last 1-2 weeks, and resolve without antibiotics. If symptoms include a high fever, shortness of breath, or duration over 2 weeks, be sure to see your doctor for evaluation.

Gastroenteritis

We are also experiencing an outbreak of viral gastroenteritis in Buncombe and Henderson counties. The symptoms include diarrhea, cramping, nausea, and vomiting. The duration is usually 3-5 days. Adults and children can be affected. The most important treatment is ample hydration. Also helpful are Immodium, antacids, and nausea medications. Dietary modifications should include a bland diet, ample liquids, and avoiding milk products and greasy foods.

World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day was observed on December 1, 2008. Despite advances in treatment, AIDS remains a major preventable killer of young adults. Here are steps you can take to help eliminate the spread of HIV / AIDS.

Take Action:

  • get tested for HIV
  • remain sexually abstinate or monogamous
  • practice safe sex methods, which includes condom use
  • do not to engage in high risk behaviors, such a sex with prostitutes, multiple partners, or strangers
  • do not share needles or contact foreign blood.
  • talk about HIV prevention with family, friends, and colleagues
  • provide support to people living with HIV/AIDS
  • get involved with or host an event for World AIDS Day in your community

www.worldaidsday.org

Health Links

For more health information, check out these links:

About our Newsletter

Dr. Curran and the staff at Pisgah Family Health are proud to publish the Pisgah Family Health News to our patients.  Our goal is to provide regularly updated information about the office and current medical topics.  We plan to publish a new issue each quarter with breaking news.  The newsletters will also be archived on our website, http://www.pisgahfamilyhealth.com/

Privacy:  We promise to use your Email address only for the purpose of sending this newsletter.  We will not give your Email address to any other organization.  We do not use Email to discuss personal medical issues.  If you want to be removed from our Email list, reply to this newsletter with the subject “unsubscribe me”.

Junk Email? Some Email servers will mark this newsletter as Junk Mail, due to the large number of recipients. You can tell your server not to mark this as Junk by following these steps.

  1. If you are not in the Junk E-mail folder, switch to that folder. (If you use Norton, switch to the Norton Antispam folder)
  2. Right click the header for the PFH newsletter.
  3. On the shortcut menu, click Junk E-mail (or Norton Antispam)
  4. On the sub-menu, click "Mark as not Junk" (or "This is not spam")
  5. You will be prompted to add this sender to your Safe Senders list. (or Allowed List)