COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Update – Immunocompromised People to Receive Additional Shot

Currently, CDC is recommending that moderately to severely immunocompromised people receive an additional dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

This includes people who have:

–         Receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood

–          Received an organ transplant and is currently taking medicine to suppress the immune system

–          Received a stem cell transplant within the last 2 years or is currently taking medicine to suppress the immune system

–          Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)

–          Advanced or untreated HIV infection

–          Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that may suppress your immune response

Individuals who believe they qualify for the COVID-19 booster vaccine, should talk to their healthcare provider about their medical condition, and whether getting an additional dose is appropriate for them.

Other important info to know before scheduling:

–          It must be at least 4 weeks past your last COVID vaccine

–          Those that received Moderna or Pfizer are eligible for a booster

–          Coryell Health only has Pfizer at the time, but this can be given to those that received Moderna for their first two doses

–          Patients that received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine are not eligible to receive a booster dose.

–          Please bring your vaccination card with you when coming for your booster vaccine

Patients that are qualified to receive the COVID-19 booster vaccine, according to CDC guidelines, may schedule an appointment online or by calling 254-865-2166 and selecting option 1. We ask that only those that have one of the following diagnoses documented in their medical history schedule a booster dose.

On Wednesday, August 18, the US Department of Health and Human Services released a statement regarding plans for authorization of a COVID-19 booster shot for all Americans in late September. Coryell Health is currently preparing to provide a booster vaccine to our communities when guidance is released from the CDC and FDA. We expect to receive guidance in September of 2021, but until then, we will only be providing the booster shot to immunocompromised individuals.

Migraines- Stop Them Before They Start

At some point, you will likely deal with a headache that is painful, frustrating, and inconvenient. However, a standard headache is different from a migraine, which is a more severe issue. These periodic, temporary events can be debilitating and negatively affect your quality of life. Fortunately, with the help of a neurologist, you can take action to prevent issues.

What Is a Migraine?

Symptoms 

Migraines involve recurring headaches of varying intensity, usually with throbbing or pulsing pain in one area of the head. Unlike a normal headache, you may also experience unusual mood changes, intense food cravings, persistent yawning, and increased fluid retention up to 24 hours before the onset of a migraine. Occasionally, you have an “aura” phase before or during an episode, during which you see bright or flashing lights or feel sudden muscle weakness. During a migraine, you may be more sensitive to light and noise, and even feel nauseous. Afterward, your body may be sore or fatigued.

Causes

Anyone can develop migraines, including children. However, it is more common among women. Certain types of migraines are also genetic and can run in families. While these headaches can occur at any time, many are preceded by a trigger. Common triggers include stress, loud noises, and hormonal changes. Alternatively, you may get a migraine after consuming a specific type of food, taking medication, or overexerting yourself physically.

Treatment

While there is no cure for migraines, you can minimize and prevent episodes. For example, a neurologist can order diagnostic testing to uncover the migraine source, as well as prescribe medications that can help prevent migraines and treat symptoms when they occur. Recording potential triggers and avoiding them, as well as getting a full night of sleep can help prevent episodes. When episodes do happen, you may find relief by drinking fluids and resting in a cool, dark room.

The average headache does not require a doctor’s visit, but if you are experiencing frequent headaches and using medication for them on a regular basis, Coryell Health neurologist Dr. Lakshmi Mukundan, MD, can help diagnose the type of headache and recommend pain reliving treatment. Dedicated to your continued whole health, Coryell Health assists with other sources of chronic pain—including arthritis, orthopedic conditions, and diabetes. Visit our website to learn more about our services, and call (254) 865-2166 to schedule an appointment.

Get Your Medical Advice Where You Always Do – Listen to Your Local Doctor

Here at Coryell, we have found the unvaccinated population makes up 92% of COVID positive tests.

COVID-19 cases have been surging in Texas and nationally — mostly among unvaccinated people — as the highly contagious delta variant has become dominant. The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is 88% effective against symptomatic cases of the delta variant and 96% effective against hospitalizations, reports Yale Medicine. As of Monday, only 42.8% of Texans are fully vaccinated. According to the Mayo Clinic, Texas continues to lag behind the national vaccination rate of 48.8%.

Coryell County Health Authority and Coryell Health Medical Clinic Director, Dr. Diedra Wuenschel, says unvaccinated individuals are more likely to experience severe symptoms. Dr. Diedra Wuenschel states, “The increase in local COVID-19 cases in the unvaccinated population speaks for itself. The vaccinated patients that have gotten COVID-19 usually have minimal symptoms and rarely end up hospitalized. We are encouraging those that are struggling with vaccine hesitancy to speak to their local healthcare provider. Unfortunately, the Coryell County vaccination rate is estimated much lower than the Texas average at only 30%.”

David Byrom, Coryell Health CEO, explains, “Our concern is not just about the Coronavirus death rate, it is also about how healthcare facilities are reaching their maximum capacity of healthcare workers available to take care of patients. Beds do not take care of patients, people do. What we want our patients to understand is if hospitals are filled to capacity with COVID-19 positive patients, there might not be room (or space may be limited) for heart attack patients or car crash victims. The science and advice from our trusted Coryell Health physicians all add up to one consistent message – getting the vaccine is the safest way to put this pandemic behind us.”

To schedule a vaccine for you or a loved one, please visit our website www.coryellhealthb.wpengine.com/vaccine.

Resources

https://www.mayoclinic.org/coronavirus-covid-19/vaccine

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/facts.html

Coryell Health Nursing Leaders Win Dual Healthcare Worker of the Year

The Gatesville Exchange Club presented its annual Healthcare Workers of the Year Award to Chief Nursing Officer Heather Rambeau and Chief Quality Officer Lauren Shelton. Pictured left to right is Exchange Club President, Alan Mathis, Heather Rambeau, Lauren Shelton, and Coryell Health’s Director of Population Health, Kathy Lee.

Know Your Poison Ivy, Oak and Sumac. Identify & Treat

Poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac are three of the most common irritants North America and affects as many as 50 million Americans each year. These plants secrete oily chemicals that can cause redness, swelling, and itching if your skin contacts them.

How Can You Identify Each One?

These plants contain urushiol, which is a poisonous compound of oils. Nearly everyone is allergic to this substance, resulting in the characteristic rash and itchiness that develops.

A good rule of thumb is to remember the famous saying, “Leaflets of three, let it be.” Poison ivy is far more common and its leaves are compound leaves, meaning each leaf is composed of three leaflets. In each set of leaflets, the middle leaflet has a longer stem than the two side leaflets. Often, a poison ivy leaf has a reddish stem, and the leaflets follow a distinctive, alternating pattern. Be sure and check the vine. Thick, hairy vines are a hallmark of poison ivy plants. Finally, look for berries. Poison ivy vines will sprout small, opaque, white or yellowish berries that look like tiny pumpkins.

Poison ivy – This vine is found on the ground, climbing on trees, fences, and walls, and can also be found in small shrubs. Poison ivy always comes with three leaves and never has thorns or sharp or scalloped edges.

Poison oak – Poison oak is not as common as poison ivy in Oklahoma. However, it is hard to tell the difference between the two and most people use the term ivy and oak interchangeably.

Poison sumac – You may only run into poison sumac if you are traveling south. Poison sumac looks a lot different than poison ivy, as its only form is a small tree. Poison sumac thrives in wetland areas.

How Can You Treat the Irritation?

The itchy rash caused by poison ivy often does not appear until 12 to 72 hours after you’ve been exposed to the oil.

If your rash is minor, here are some tips from the American Academy of Dermatology.

  • Wash the affected areas with soapy, lukewarm water.
  • Place cool, wet compresses on the affected area for 15 to 30 minutes several times a day.
  • Soak in a cool-water bath containing an oatmeal-based bath product such as Aveeno.
  • Apply an over-the-counter corticosteroid cream for the first few days.
  • Apply calamine lotion.
  • Take oral antihistamines, such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl, others), which may also help you sleep better.
  • Wash any belongings that might have come into contact with the ivy to prevent further outbreaks.

If you break out into a serious rash or if you experience swelling or painful blistering with a rash, it’s best to visit your health care provider right away. A doctor may offer topical steroid creams to reduce redness and swelling, and they may prescribe oral antibiotics if the rash develops an infection.

If you’ve had a brush with poison ivy, oak, or sumac, our team of medical team will help you recover from the symptoms and minimize complications from these painful irritants. We proudly serve patients throughout Central Texas, with family medicine clinics in Gatesville, Goldthwaite, and Moody. Call us at (254) 865-2166 to schedule an appointment, and visit our website to learn more about our treatment options.

 

Coryell Health Receives 5 Star Rating for Hospital Care

Coryell Health is proud to announce Coryell Memorial Hospital is rated FIVE STARS by Medicare.gov Hospital Compare Star Rating. The patient survey rating measures patients’ experiences of their hospital care. Recently discharged patients were asked about important topics like how well nurses and doctors communicated, how responsive hospital staff were to their needs, and the cleanliness and quietness of the hospital environment. To learn more about Medicare’s Hospital Compare, visit https://www.medicare.gov/care-compare/.

National Hospital Week 2021

It’s National Nurses Week and a time to share our appreciation for nurses throughout our community. Nurses are health care heroes, touching our lives with expertise and compassion day after day, but especially deserving of recognition for their work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

This week, Coryell Health celebrates the amazing individuals that are the backbone of healthcare.

Coryell Health celebrates National Hospital Week as an opportunity to thank all of the dedicated individuals – physicians, nurses, therapists, first responders, call center operators, food service workers, volunteers, and so many more – for their contributions. In this past year- our staff has responded to extraordinary events in extraordinary ways – these same efforts are leading us today.

– David Byrom, Coryell Health CEO

#NationalHospitalWeek2021 #TeamCoryellHealth

Ask Your Medical Practitioner About Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine

COVID-19 can have serious, life-threatening complications, and there is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you. And if you get sick, you could spread the disease to friends, family, and others around you. Please ask your practitioner about getting the vaccine during your next routine medical office visit.

Coryell Health Chief Nursing Officer, Heather Rambeau, Wins Honorable Mention 2020- TX Nurses Foundation Board of Directors

Congratulations Heather Rambeau, MSN, RN, Coryell Health Chief Nursing Officer, on receiving Honorable Mention from the Texas Nurses Foundation and Texas Nurses Association Board of Directors for their dedication, perseverance and compassion exhibited during this exceptional year. Please see the awards article: 20 for 2020 Nurse Awards | Texas Nurses Foundation and Texas Nurses Association

RehabLiving Residents & Staff Are Proud to Have Taken Their Shot at COVID-19

As healthcare providers, we commit each day to our organization’s mission to promote health and wellness of our residents, patients, fellow staff, our loved ones and our community. Right now we have a unique opportunity to help meet that mission through a single act- getting vaccinated against COVID-19.  #CoryellStrong #TakeYourShot at COVID-19. #CentralTexasStrong #UnitedWeStand

Schedule you and your adult loved ones 16+ for a COVID-19 Vaccine at CoryellHealth.org/Vaccine or call (254) 248-6381.