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WVU launches fundraiser to help cancer patients

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia University has launched the fourth annual Penny Wars to benefit cancer patients. The goal of the campaign is to collect one million pennies in just eight weeks.  All proceeds will go to the Comfort Fund at the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center. The Fund provides short-term financial assistance for patients being treated at the Cancer Center Clinic until they can be linked with appropriate community, state or national resources.  Coin collection containers are placed at area businesses, including: Black Bear Burritos, Boston Beanery, Buffalo Wild Wings, Cool Ridge, Damon’s Grill and Texas Roadhouse. Collection containers are also placed at various WVU campus locations, including: the HSC cafeteria, the HSC WVU bookstore, the WVU Barnes and Noble Bookstore and the Friends Gift Shop at WVU Hospitals. Donations can also be dropped off to the valet service at the WVU Cancer Center or mailed to Penny Wars, P.O. Box 9300, Morgantown, W.Va., 26506. On May 7, the Clarion Hotel Morgan will host a Kentucky Derby Party as part of the fundraiser. The cost is $50 per person, which will include:  free valet, a hors d’oeuvres buffet, cash bar, entertainment, raffle prizes, silent auction and a hat contest. Those who want to participate in the hat contest should pre-decorate their hats and wear them to the event. Registration is required. Call Jessica Spatafore by April 29 at 304-293-0789. Local public schools also plan to support Penny Wars through their own fundraising efforts.  Parents are encouraged to call their children’s schools to assist in planning ways to raise funds to help the MBRCC meet its goal of one million pennies. The Penny Wars will continue until May 13. Last year, the campaign raised more than $12,000 to benefit cancer patients at WVU.   [...]

WVU using tiny heart pump to help heart attack and heart failure patients

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – In 2008, physicians at the West Virginia University Heart Institute became the first in the state to use the Impella left ventricular assist device. Now, they are among the first in the nation to use it in heart attack and heart failure patients. Initially, the Impella device was used to enable the heart to rest during difficult procedures and to heal and recover during episodes of congestive heart failure. In most cases, it was used in scheduled angioplasties and stent placements. Now, doctors are using that same device in patients who come into the emergency department with severe heart attacks, congestive heart failure and cardiogenic shock, which occurs when the heart is unable to pump as much blood as the body needs. “It’s a good therapy for people who are having a heart attack because it can take over when the heart is stunned after a heart attack,” Wissam Gharib, M.D., director of the WVU Heart Institute Cardiac Catheterization Lab, said. “It’s also useful in congestive heart failure patients because the device, often employed for only a few hours, can also stay in place for several days if necessary to improve blood flow.” The Impella works by redirecting blood from the heart, increasing and supporting the patient’s blood circulation. It is inserted by using a catheter into the major artery of the leg. The device is primarily used in heart attack and heart failure patients who are unstable when they arrive at the emergency department. It would not be used in a patient who suffers a small heart attack and has stable vital signs. “The earlier the device is put in, the better chance the patient has to recover,” Dr. Gharib said. “Time saved is heart muscle saved.”   [...]

WVUH Nutrition Services employees to graduate from customer service training

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – On Friday (March 25), employees in West Virginia University Hospitals Nutrition Services will graduate from customer service training in preparation for the department’s transition to a room service style of patient meal delivery, which is scheduled to occur this summer. Nutrition Services partnered with Don Miller and Associates, a coaching group that assists non-contract healthcare food service departments improve performance. Employees will graduate from the group’s “Destination 10 – Customer Service Academy,” which according to the group’s website is a “formalized, structured set of tools and services focused on inspiring food service teams to perform at the highest performance level.” The purpose of the training is to prepare employees for the upcoming switch from scheduled meal delivery to room service delivery. In this system, patients will phone a hospitality center to place their orders between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Four customer service agents will be on hand to answer the calls. Meals will be delivered to patients within 45 minutes. “Room service is a patient meal delivery system that has been implemented in hospitals across the country over the past 10 to15 years,” Kendra Stoen, director of WVUH Nutrition Services, said. “We are very excited to offer this service to our patients. It is a huge transition for all involved, but the patient satisfaction results that other hospitals have seen make it worth the effort.” Telecommunications will provide reports to Nutrition Services regarding peak call volume times, wait times and lost calls, so that the department can adjust as necessary. Reports will also be run toward the end of each normal meal period to see who has not ordered so those patients can be checked on. “With this style of meal delivery, patients are happier, and in the long run, it’s less expensive for us than traditional meal delivery,” Stoen said. “But the number one reason to do this is patient satisfaction. At the end of the day, that’s what we’re here for.” Graduation ceremonies will be held at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. in conference rooms 7 and 8 on the fourth floor of Ruby Memorial Hospital.   [...]

WVU study finds link between early menopause and environmental chemicals

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – A study by researchers in the West Virginia University Department of Community Medicine found that women with high levels of an environmental chemical are at increased odds of having experienced menopause earlier in life than those with lower levels. Perfluorocarbons (PFCs) are manmade chemicals that are used in a variety of household products, including stain repellants and waterproofing found in food containers, clothing, furniture, carpet and paint. Because of their widespread use, PFCs are also found in water, air, soil, plants, animals and humans. “PFCs are toxins that shouldn’t be in our bodies in the first place, but 98 percent of people tested have measurable levels of PFCs in their blood,” Sarah Knox, Ph.D., epidemiologist and professor in the Department of Community Medicine and lead author of the study, said. The study included 25,957 women ages 18-65 in eight water districts in the Parkersburg area. Researchers found a significant association between high PFC levels in the blood and an early onset of self-reported menopause as well as low estrogen levels. However, the causality is still unclear. “If the PFCs are causing early menopause, then those women are at an increased risk for heart issues. If they aren’t, there are still toxins accumulating in the body that shouldn’t be there,” Dr. Knox said. “Either way, it’s bad news.” The next step, Knox said, is to determine an estimated age of menopause and to conduct a population-based study to figure out the causality. In the meantime, Knox said there are things that people can do to reduce their exposure to PFCs: •    Have hardwood floors in the home instead of stain-resistant carpeting •    Wear all-cotton clothing; do not put children in flame-resistant clothing •    Make popcorn in an air popper instead of a microwave •    Microwave food in glass instead of plastic containers •    Use cast-iron cookware instead of non-stick coated cookware Other WVU researchers who participated in the study include: Alan Ducatman, M.D., Anoop Shankar, M.D., Ph.D., Stephanie Frisbee, Ph.D., and Beth Javins of the Department of Community Medicine and Timothy Jackson, M.D., of the Department of Medicine. The study, “Implications of Early Menopause in Women Exposed to Perfluorocarbons,” will appear in the June issue of the “Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism,” the world’s leading peer-reviewed journal for endocrine clinical research and cutting-edge clinical practice reviews. The abstract can be viewed online at http://jcem.endojournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/jc.2010-2401v1. For more information about perfluorocarbons from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, see www.epa.gov/opptintr/pfoa.   [...]

Bonnie’s Bus offers mammograms March 30 in Sissonville

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Bonnie’s Bus, a digital mammography center on wheels, will visit Kanawha County this month, offering digital mammograms and breast care education to women.  A service of WVU Healthcare, Bonnie’s Bus will be at the Pocatalico Community Church in Sissonville from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 30.   The mammograms are billed to insurance, Medicaid or Medicare if available. Mammograms for women who do not have insurance will be covered by the West Virginia Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program or through a special grant from the Susan B. Komen for the Cure Foundation. A physician’s order is needed for a mammogram. For a Bonnie’s Bus appointment call Tonya at the Sissonville Health Center at 304-984-1585.  Last year, Bonnie’s Bus made 65 visits in 30 counties throughout West Virginia providing mammography screening to nearly 800 women. About half of those screened were medically underserved and from challenged socio-economic backgrounds and qualified for screening through the Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program. The goal for this year is to screen at least 1,200 women. Bonnie’s Bus works in collaboration with a statewide partnership of women’s groups, clinicians, public health professionals and other community leaders working to help reduce the number of deaths from breast cancer in West Virginia. Made possible by a generous gift from West Virginia natives Jo and Ben Statler to WVU’s Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, Bonnie’s Bus is operated by WVU Hospitals. The bus is named after Mrs. Statler's late mother, Bonnie Wells Wilson. For information on Bonnie’s Bus, see www.wvucancer.org/bonnie.   Attention reporters and editors: If you are interested in covering Bonnie’s Bus when it visits your area, please call the HSC News Service in Morgantown at 304-293-7087 in advance. Out of respect for patient privacy, please do not show up at the location without scheduling an appropriate time for interviews and/or photos.   [...]

Bonnie’s Bus offers mammograms March 28 in Clarksburg

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Bonnie’s Bus, a digital mammography center on wheels, will visit Harrison County this month, offering digital mammograms and breast care education to women.  A service of WVU Healthcare, Bonnie’s Bus will be at the Clarksburg Curves at the intersection of route 98 and Chestnut Street from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday, March 28.   The mammograms are billed to insurance, Medicaid or Medicare if available. Mammograms for women who do not have insurance will be covered by the West Virginia Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program or through a special grant from the Susan B. Komen for the Cure Foundation. A physician’s order is needed for a mammogram. For a Bonnie’s Bus appointment call the Harrison-Clarksburg Health Departmentat 304-623-9308.  Last year, Bonnie’s Bus made 65 visits in 30 counties throughout West Virginia providing mammography screening to nearly 800 women. About half of those screened were medically underserved and from challenged socio-economic backgrounds and qualified for screening through the Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program. The goal for this year is to screen at least 1,200 women. Bonnie’s Bus works in collaboration with a statewide partnership of women’s groups, clinicians, public health professionals and other community leaders working to help reduce the number of deaths from breast cancer in West Virginia. Made possible by a generous gift from West Virginia natives Jo and Ben Statler to WVU’s Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, Bonnie’s Bus is operated by WVU Hospitals. The bus is named after Mrs. Statler's late mother, Bonnie Wells Wilson. For information on Bonnie’s Bus, see www.wvucancer.org/bonnie.  Attention reporters and editors: If you are interested in covering Bonnie’s Bus when it visits your area, please call the HSC News Service in Morgantown at 304-293-7087 in advance. Out of respect for patient privacy, please do not show up at the location without scheduling an appropriate time for interviews and/or photos.   [...]

Protea and MBRCC announce cancer research collaboration

The following information was released by Protea Biosciences today: [...]

Bonnie’s Bus offers mammograms March 24 in Augusta

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Bonnie’s Bus, a digital mammography center on wheels, will visit Hampshire County this month, offering digital mammograms and breast care education to women.  A service of WVU Healthcare, Bonnie’s Bus will be at the Hampshire County Health Department in Augusta from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Thursday, March 24.   The mammograms are billed to insurance, Medicaid or Medicare if available. Mammograms for women who do not have insurance will be covered by the West Virginia Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program or through a special grant from the Susan B. Komen for the Cure Foundation. A physician’s order is needed for a mammogram. For a Bonnie’s Bus appointment call the Hampshire County Health Department at 304-496-9640.  Last year, Bonnie’s Bus made 65 visits in 30 counties throughout West Virginia providing mammography screening to nearly 800 women. About half of those screened were medically underserved and from challenged socio-economic backgrounds and qualified for screening through the Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program. The goal for this year is to screen at least 1,200 women. Bonnie’s Bus works in collaboration with a statewide partnership of women’s groups, clinicians, public health professionals and other community leaders working to help reduce the number of deaths from breast cancer in West Virginia. Made possible by a generous gift from West Virginia natives Jo and Ben Statler to WVU’s Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, Bonnie’s Bus is operated by WVU Hospitals. The bus is named after Mrs. Statler's late mother, Bonnie Wells Wilson. For information on Bonnie’s Bus, see www.wvucancer.org/bonnie.  Attention reporters and editors: If you are interested in covering Bonnie’s Bus when it visits your area, please call the HSC News Service in Morgantown at 304-293-7087 in advance. Out of respect for patient privacy, please do not show up at the location without scheduling an appropriate time for interviews and/or photos. [...]

Bonnie’s Bus offers mammograms March 23 in Paw Paw

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Bonnie’s Bus, a digital mammography center on wheels, will visit Morgan County this month, offering digital mammograms and breast care education to women.  A service of WVU Healthcare, Bonnie’s Bus will be at the Mountaineer Community Health Center in Paw Paw from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 23.   The mammograms are billed to insurance, Medicaid or Medicare if available. Mammograms for women who do not have insurance will be covered by the West Virginia Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program or through a special grant from the Susan B. Komen for the Cure Foundation. A physician’s order is needed for a mammogram. For a Bonnie’s Bus appointment call the Mountaineer Community Health Center at 304-947-5500.  Last year, Bonnie’s Bus made 65 visits in 30 counties throughout West Virginia providing mammography screening to nearly 800 women. About half of those screened were medically underserved and from challenged socio-economic backgrounds and qualified for screening through the Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program. The goal for this year is to screen at least 1,200 women. Bonnie’s Bus works in collaboration with a statewide partnership of women’s groups, clinicians, public health professionals and other community leaders working to help reduce the number of deaths from breast cancer in West Virginia. Made possible by a generous gift from West Virginia natives Jo and Ben Statler to WVU’s Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, Bonnie’s Bus is operated by WVU Hospitals. The bus is named after Mrs. Statler's late mother, Bonnie Wells Wilson. For information on Bonnie’s Bus, see www.wvucancer.org/bonnie.  Attention reporters and editors: If you are interested in covering Bonnie’s Bus when it visits your area, please call the HSC News Service in Morgantown at 304-293-7087 in advance. Out of respect for patient privacy, please do not show up at the location without scheduling an appropriate time for interviews and/or photos.   [...]



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