Mental Illness

In many ways, it is easier to deal with physical than mental illness. In our society, most of us have been taught from a variety of institutions and individuals that mental illness is more of a weakness than a disease. Yet, medical evidence strongly tells us that a disease of the brain should be viewed and treated with the same approach as physical ailments.

And like physical disease is quite often genetic, so is mental illness. If you have 1 parent who is schizophrenic, then your chance of developing schizophrenia is 1 in 4. If both parents are schizophrenic, then your chance is 1 in 2. Similar statistics are true for depression, bipolar illness, colon cancer, heart disease, and a myriad of other illnesses.

It is heartbreaking when a patient has an illness of any type and because of what they have been taught about illness is incorrect, they do not seek medical help or seek help which has no evidence that it does any good.

Two of the most common mental illnesses are depression and bipolar illness(manic-depressive illness). Quite often, the patient has little or no insight that they are experiencing serious mental illness. Those around them may notice a problem, but are unfamiliar with this type of illness, and therefore are unable to direct their family member or friend to seek appropriate help.

Depression is characterized by sadness, hopelessness, lack of interest, change in diet and sleep habits, and in more severe cases, of suicidal thoughts.

Mania is characterized by pressured speech and thoughts, excessive energy and sleeplessness, making poor decisions, and often having little or no insight that anything is wrong.

There are medicines which are very effective in treating both of these conditions. I know of a patient who was advised to see a psychologist for manic-depressive illness. The psychologist said I’ll be happy to see you for counseling, but what you need now is medications to bring this disease under control. I’m sure that his honesty was much appreciated.

At Emergicare, we have sympathetic and knowledgable providers to assess and treat uncomplicated clinical depression. generalized anxiety, and insomnia. Patients with more complicated illness would be referred to a psychiatrist.

If you or someone dear to you may be suffering from mental illness, get professional help. You will make their life and the lives of those around them better.

Free Preventative Care and Expanded Care with New Health Care Law

Do you have children up to the age of 26. If so, they can be covered under the new law. The price is the same, regardless of whether you have 1 or multiple children.

Many people who have insurance are not aware of this and other benefits such as free physicals, comprehensive blood tests,  immunizations, and age appropriate tests such as colonoscopy, stress EKG, mammography, Pap Test, and a large variety of other tests.

We consult with you and make arrangements for you to have life saving preventative exams, in addition to what we can do for you at Emergicare.

If you have no insurance, we make preventative care affordable and refer you to the places to get tests affordably.

Patient Appreciation Coupons from Emergicare

During the month of September, you can have a sports or school physical for $50 instead of our usual prices of $60 or $65. If more than 1 family member gets a physical, take an additional $10 off.
If you have insurance, your physicals are usually free. We will bill your insurance for you.

Watch out for poison ivy

Poison ivy has 3 leaves. All parts of the plant cause itching dermatitis. It grows from the ground and wraps around trees. Once the oil is washed off, it is no longer contagious. There are many ways to get poison ivy besides touching it directly. Touching a pet who has brushed up against it, burning brush with poison ivy in it, and touching clothes which have touched it are common ways.
If you can wash it the oil from the plant off within 15 minutes, it will usually prevent it.
Topical cortisone, benadryl, and calamine lotion help for mild cases, but for severe cases, injectable or oral cortisone works much better. These require a visit to your doctor.

La hiedra venenosa tiene tres hojas. Todas las partes de la planta de provocar dermatitis. Crece desde el suelo y se envuelve alrededor de los árboles. Una vez que el aceite se lava, ya no es contagiosa.

Boxtruck donation to Haiti non-profit

Emergicare staff sending off their boxtruck to Haitian relief

Emergicare staff sending off their boxtruck to Haitian relief

This was one of those gifts that keep giving.
First of all, some county personnel will be happy because we kept getting written up for having the truck out in the parking lot.
Second, the local Medical Missions is happy to send down some of their valuable medical supplies in it.
Third, some good-hearted Haitians in Cap-Haitien will be happy, because their 2 other trucks were from the 60’s (this is an old ’94 model). Then all the needed relief supplies that they deliver will make many more people happy.
Fourth, it makes us at Emergicare happy to be a part of such a good work.

Tis the season for allergic rhinitis

Allergies are the big problem now. We’ve seen it frequently. People are up all night coughing, with inflammation in nostrils, coughing all night, itching in eyes, nose and throat. Some have difficulty breathing and wheezing.

The other day, we treated 7 patients. Typically, we treat allergic rhinitis with either long-acting or short acting injections. We do everything we can to get people back to work, and keep them from simply coming back in for same thing.

Preventing Prescription Abuse

We are happy that the state of Virginia has adopted some public health measures to slow the proliferation of prescription narcotic abuse. For 10 months, Emergicare has participated with the Virginia Department of Health Prescription Monitoring Program.

This allows our physicians to

  • track and report possible “doctor shoppers” who seek to abuse Schedule II-IV drugs.
  • establish a more accurate patient history, and prescribe accordingly.

Senior Services for patients

Sometimes we have patients who need senior care services. Today, we were happy to have Jennifer Bolles from Home Instead Senior Care explain to us the many services that complement her company’s in-home Companion Care/Home Helper/personal care services:

  • In-home Companion Care/Home Helper services
    • eg. Home Instead Senior Care
    • – not all of these offer personal care service (eg. Bathing, incontinence assistance, mobility aid), which Home Instead does
  • Hospice – end-of-life care
  • Palliative – for fragile people in-home, often includes working towards a cure
  • Skilled medical care
  • Medical Supply Stores – durable medical equipment
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Geriatric case managers/social workers – works with family to help identify plan of care (supposed to be neutral)
  • Assisted living communities
  • Independent living communities
  • Rehabilitative care (short-term), often with a long-term care wing (nursing homes)
  • Independent rehabilitative therapists (eg. respiratory, occupational, physical)

Informative medical resource

MedlinePlus Trusted Health Information for You: A service of the National Library of Medicine Doctors at Emergicare don’t mind seeing educated patients. And here’s your tax dollars at work to provide some great health information resource. MedlinePlus directs you to information to help answer health questions. MedlinePlus brings together authoritative information from NLM, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and other government agencies and health-related organizations. MedlinePlus also contains extensive information about drugs and supplements, an illustrated medical encyclopedia, interactive tutorials, the latest health news, and surgery videos.

We’ve added it to our resource page. Is there anything health-related that this website does not have?

Dr. Woodard returns from Haiti

With 4 physicians at Emergicare, one could afford to go help victims of the earthquake in Haiti while the other 3 still maintained excellent care.

Dr. Woodard wrote the following:
Sunday Jan 17 – joined Helping Haitian Angels.
I saw Dr. Kevin Kollar whom I worked with in the Waynesboro, VA ER 20 years ago. He and 3 other doctors, a nurse, and a dentist from the USA invited me to join them to work in a well established clinic an hour away from Cap Hatien. I worked there only Monday the 18th and Friday the 22nd. together we saw over 1400 patients and pulled 250 teeth. it was the most fun part of the trip for me as I was seeing some very ill and injured patients one after the other with an excellent support staff. Read more