My Health Blog Methodist Health Home
Is Your Life Too Loud?
last updated:
Fri, 2/08/2013 5:08 PM
Welcome to February, the shortest month of the year. For many, this is the time of year when we crave comfort – a respite from the dark and cold and noise of daily distractions. This can be an opportunity to learn to lighten our thoughts and feel the warmth of peace. Are you bothered by concerns in your life that unsettle you or overwhelm you with their loud insistence? This might be the perfect time to invite more quiet and calm into your day.

I am blessed to have a life that is full of noise, excitement and travel. What keeps me focused and happy, though, is not the noise but the daily times of quiet and reflection. As a nation we are busy people ready to download the latest song and watch the newest YouTube sensation. We fill our every minute with novelty and action. Often we find that the lure of doing and having more never ends! We are hoping that today is the day we have had our fill. What would it feel like to be satisfied?

The word February comes from the Latin word Februa, which was a purification festival in ancient Rome. During this still winter month, consider the significance of cleansing and purifying your mind. This is a perfect time to reacquaint yourself with silence. Instead of listening to the car radio, try to quiet your mind. Instead of an evening with TV, try to be with yourself, your family members or an inspiring book. When you walk your dog, remain aware of your surroundings rather than talking on your phone. Have you noticed people at the same table in a restaurant who are checking their email or Facebook account rather than visiting with their companion? Perhaps you have become one of those people.

As William Penn said, “True silence is the rest of the mind; it is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.” Quieting the mind that is used to agitation and worry is the beginning of a greater sense of renewal and refreshment. If you make space for a bit of silence in your life, you will feel more peace and calm. February is the shortest month, a reasonable time to explore what you can subtract rather than add. 

The Methodist Healthcare Employee Assistance Program (EAP) in Memphis, TN partners with businesses, employees and their families to assist in their efforts towards professional and personal success and well-being. For more information about how Methodist Healthcare EAP can partner with your business, please call 901.683.5658 or 800.880.5658.

Do you know your blood pressure?
last updated:
Fri, 1/11/2013 2:02 PM
There are benefits to monitoring your blood pressure from home. 

blood pressure monitorChecking your blood pressure at home is an important part of managing high blood pressure (hypertension). The American Heart Association and other organizations recommend anyone who has high blood pressure monitor his or her blood pressure at home.  Here are a few of the benefits to home monitoring from the staff at Mayo Clinic

Home monitoring can:

  • Help you keep tabs on your blood pressure in a familiar setting.
  • Make certain your medication is working.
  • Alert you and your doctors to potential health complications.

 

Because blood pressure monitors are available without a prescription, home monitoring is an easy step you can take to improve your condition. Before you get started, it's important to know the right technique and to find a good home blood pressure monitor.

Why do I need to monitor my blood pressure at home?

Monitoring your blood pressure at home offers several benefits. It can:

  1. Help make an early diagnosis of high blood pressure. If you have prehypertension or another condition that could contribute to high blood pressure, such as diabetes or kidney problems, home blood pressure monitoring could help your doctor diagnose high blood pressure earlier than if you have only infrequent blood pressure readings in the doctor's office.
  2. Help track your treatment. Home blood pressure monitoring can help people of all ages keep track of their condition—including children and teenagers who have high blood pressure. Self-monitoring provides important information between visits to your doctor. The only way to know whether your lifestyle changes or your medications are working is to check your blood pressure regularly. Keeping track of changes can help you and your health care team make decisions about your ongoing treatment, such as adjusting dosages or changing medications.
  3. Encourage better control. Taking your own blood pressure measurements can result in better blood pressure control. You gain a stronger sense of responsibility for your health, and you may be even more motivated to control your blood pressure with an improved diet, physical activity and proper medication use.
  4. Cut your health care costs. Home monitoring may cut down on the number of visits you need to make to your doctor or clinic. This can reduce your overall health care costs, lower your travel expenses and save in lost wages.
  5. Check if your blood pressure is different outside the doctor's office. Your doctor may suspect that your blood pressure goes up due to the anxiety associated with being at the doctor's office, but is otherwise normal—a condition called “white-coat hypertension.” Monitoring blood pressure at home or work, where that kind of anxiety won't cause spikes, can help determine if you have true high blood pressure or simply white coat hypertension. Home and workplace monitoring may also help when the opposite occurs—your blood pressure seems fine at the doctor's office, but is elevated elsewhere. This kind of high blood pressure, sometimes called “masked hypertension,” is more common in women and those who have cardiovascular risk factors, such as obesity, high blood cholesterol and high blood sugar. 
Not everyone can track blood pressure at home. If you have an irregular heartbeat, home blood pressure monitors might not give you an accurate reading. In some cases, the type of monitor you use could depend on your physical condition. If you're overweight or very muscular, you'll need to find a monitor with a larger arm cuff. If you have hearing loss, a monitor with a digital display may be more suitable.

For your convenience, Methodist Healthcare offers several options of home blood pressure monitoring devices to choose on the Home Medical Equipment Online Store. These lightweight blood pressure monitors fit comfortably on the wrist and feature a 60-reading memory storage.  The monitors are able to compute the average of the last 3 readings taken. 

This information is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition.

Sources: 



Making the Most of Home Care
last updated:
Tue, 9/25/2012 3:31 PM

While we’d all like to think that a discharge from the hospital leaves us at 100 percent, often recovery time and medical equipment is needed for complete recovery at home.

Your medical care team, which includes physicians, home health aides and social workers, can give you a list of equipment and supplies you will need. It also might be beneficial to look into a care coordinator for your family. A care coordinator can take stock of your situation, help you access the right services, counsel you and your family, then monitor your progress with an eye toward channeling your energy and abilities as effectively as possible. Having the help of a care coordinator (often called a care manager) could make your life easier and less lonesome, and help you be a more capable family caregiver.

Depending on your condition, the following are possible medical supplies that your loved one could need at home:

  • Aerosol supplies
  • Apnea monitors
  • CPM machines
  • Crutches
  • Group 2 mattresses
  • Hospital beds
  • Incontinence products
  • Oxygen
  • Portable Oxygen concentrator
  • Patient Lifts
  • Tens Unit
  • Urological Products including bedside commodes
  • Volume & Pressure supported Ventilators
  • Power Wheelchairs
  • Wheelchairs & Accessories
  • Walkers

All of these supplies are available online, at www.methodisthealth.org/hme. Methodist Healthcare accepts most major insurance plans, including:

  • Medicare
  • Medicaid
  • TennCare
  • Worker’s Compensation
  • Most private insurance

It’s a good idea to have the required equipment delivered and in working order before your discharge from the hospital. The Methodist Home Medical Equipment office is open for equipment pick-up from 8 am to 5 pm, Monday-Friday (with the exception of major holidays). Delivery is available 24 hours a day for new referrals.

By having everything ready in advance for your loved one's return you will help ensure a more comfortable transition home.

Methodist Home Medical Equipment
Phone: (901) 516-1999
(800) 541-8277
Fax: (901) 382-1979
http://www.methodisthealth.org

Sources:
http://www.caregiverstress.com
National Family Caregivers Association

What does Health Reform mean for me?
last updated:
Tue, 4/06/2010 12:07 PM

Last week,  President Obama signed the healthcare reform bill - the Healthcare and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010. His signature was the last step and officially sets healthcare reform into law.

We have been asked a number of questions about the healthcare reform law and we'd like to give you the information to better understand the major provisions impacting hospitals as well as additional information that may be of interest to you. The Health Reform Timeline covers immediate changes through 2018. We've compiled a list of health reform changes that affect hospitals, including Methodist Healthcare. You may also be interested in some of the other changes coming this year.

Effective Immediately 

  • Insurance companies will be prevented from placing lifetime caps on policies.
  • Insurance companies will not be able to drop a patient’s insurance if he/she gets sick.
  • One-year, $250 Medicare drug rebate will be offered for Medicare recipients to help pay for prescription medications.

Effective 90 Days after Enactment

  • A temporary high risk pool will be created for individuals with pre-existing conditions who have been uninsured for at least six months until something permanent is established for this population.
  • A temporary reinsurance program will be created for employers to provide insurance to retirees over age 55 who are not eligible for Medicare. (Until state-exchanges are available).

Effective Six Months after Enactment

  • Insurance companies will no longer be allowed to deny coverage to children (up to 19 years of age) because of pre-existing medical conditions.
  • Insurance companies will have to provide coverage for dependent children up to age 26.
  • Health insurance plans will be required to cover preventive services such as immunizations for children and cancer screenings for women.s

There is much more to the law than what we have listed here. The regulatory rules to implement these changes are currently being proposed by federal agencies such as the Department of Health and Human Services. We will continue to monitor and communicate changes that impact our hospitals and the patients and families we serve in the weeks and months to come.  As always, we will adjust to change while remaining dedicated to you, to our mission and to our vision.

Taking Charge of My Health
last updated:
Thu, 4/01/2010 11:28 AM

What can I do about my health? Don't wait until 2011 to make a new year's resolution. Today is the best day to start! Taking charge of your health is the best way to live the healthy life you want. Know your options. Pay attention to your body. And, communicate with your healthcare provider. That’s us. We’ve brought together physicians from our hospitals and outpatient locations to share information with you about how you can be prepared and informed for any experience with us at Methodist Healthcare.

We want to work with you and your family to provide the best quality of care. Our specialty areas, The Neuroscience Institute, The Transplant Institute, The Cancer Center and The Cardiovascular Institute, help us provide superior quality healthcare to Memphis, Tennessee and the Mid-South. But, if you have questions about any other health topics or services we offer, just let us know! This is a place for you to be able to say, "Hey, it's My Health we're talking about here!"

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Methodist Healthcare is an integrated health care delivery system, dedicated to the art of healing through our faith-based commitment to minister to the whole person. 1211 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee 38104 • (901) 516-7000

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