SOMC wound care available in Vanceburg

Southern Ohio Medical Center will be offering Wound Care in Vanceburg, Kentucky at the Vanceburg Family Practice and Specialty Associates. SOMC’s Dr. Jeffery E. Parker will be available to see patients for wound care on Thursdays.

The Wound Healing Center at SOMC’s main campus currently treats many patients from the Vanceburg area. “Bringing this specialty and Dr. Parker’s expertise to Vanceburg allows us to meet a need in the community,” Neva Moore said. Patients at the Wound Healing Center are scheduled weekly, resulting in more advanced healing outcomes.

The Wound Healing Center treats all types of chronic wounds including diabetic ulcers, surgical wounds that won’t heal, venous, arterial, and pressure ulcers. Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBO) is also offered as an adjunct to standard wound care at SOMC’s main campus in Portsmouth.

If you or someone you know is suffering with a chronic wound, please ask your primary care physician for a referral to the wound healing center or you may self-refer by calling 740-356-8875. The Vanceburg Family Practice and Specialty Associates are located at 207 Plummers Lane in Vanceburg, Kentucky.

For more information, call (606) 796-0010 or visit

SOMC announces Boot Camp Extreme

SOMC LIFE Center’s Outdoor Boot Camp Extreme will begin June 23.

The class will meet Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 5:30-6:30pm at SOMC Portsmouth LIFE Center. The cost to participate will be $5 per day. The Outdoor Boot Camp Extreme class will meet outdoors and continue rain or shine.

For more information, call the SOMC LIFE Center at 740-356-7650.


SOMC offers dementia in service

Southern Ohio Medical Center’s is offering a free in service called Dementia: The Basics through the Senior Behavioral Medicine Care Unit.

Melissa Dever from the Alzheimer’s Association will be presenting at the in service on June 17th at 1:00pm in the East Campus upstairs conference room at the Gibson Building. 1 free CEU will be given for nursing and social work at this event.

“We encourage the public to attend the in service to better understand dementia,” Erica Kegley, SOMC’s Community Education Manager, said.

The in service will be free and open to the public. For more information, visit


SOMC welcomes new Junior Volunteers

SOMC recently welcomed a new group of Junior Volunteers. Volunteering will help them build valuable job skills and meet new people as they assist staff in improving the comfort and well-being of SOMC patients. There are more orientations for Junior Volunteers currently scheduled, so it is not too late for other prospective volunteers to sign up. Junior Volunteers must be at least 15-years-old. For more information, contact SOMC Volunteer Services at 740-356-8234.

SOMC, Healogics Raising Awareness of Chronic Wounds

Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Wound Healing Center is participating in the first Healogics National Wound Care Awareness Week from June 2 to June 6.

One of nearly 600 Healogics managed centers, SOMC Wound Healing Center provides individuals in the community with advanced healing expertise and outcomes. Program directors of Healogics, Inc. will dedicate the entire week to visiting local physician offices to provide education to help staff identify patients that may benefit from advanced wound care.

“Untreated, chronic wounds can lead to diminished quality of life. At SOMC’s Wound Healing Center, we offer advanced therapies to patients suffering from these wounds,” Dr. Lichtenstein, Medical Director of the Wound Healing Center, said.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy is an intermittent treatment of 100 percent oxygen at increased atmospheric pressure that stimulates the release of growth factors and stem cells that promote healing. It also helps with diabetic foot ulcers and late effects of radiation therapy.

To schedule an appointment with SOMC Wound Healing Center, please call 740-356-8775 or for more information please visit


Home and Palliative Care expand services

SOMC Home CareSouthern Ohio Medical Center Home Care and Palliative Care departments are now expanding services to Scioto, Pike, Adams, as well as surrounding borders in Ohio. In Kentucky, service areas include Lewis and Greenup counties.

Established in 1966, SOMC has the oldest hospital-based home care agency in Ohio.  Both programs offer a coordinated, individualized program that is developed for patients and family by providing physical, emotional, and social support.

Home Health/Palliative Care services include nursing care, therapy services, home health aide services, medical social services, and telehealth monitoring services.

Palliative Care is SOMC’s newest Home Health program.  Palliative Care offers Home Care services with more of a Hospice philosophy, but patients may continue to seek aggressive or curative treatment for any illness.

“SOMC Palliative Care helps patients with advanced illnesses who need help choosing the best treatment options, managing pain and symptoms and developing advanced directives and complex care coordination with a specialized team,” Jenni Smathers, SOMC’s Palliative Care Case Manager, said.

Both Home Care and Palliative Care offer several services to patients in need, including on-call nursing services 24-hours a day, communication to update physicians as changes occur and coordination of care amongst healthcare departments.  Telehealth monitoring is especially helpful to monitor daily weight and vital signs for many acute or chronic diseases.

Referrals may be initiated by patients, families, or physicians. Once the referral is made, the staff will coordinate the appropriate care for patients of any age, at any point of illness.

For more information about SOMC Home Care or Palliative Care services, call 740-356-5600.

Cancer Center earns ACR accreditation

Southern Ohio Medical Center’s Cancer Center has been awarded a three-year term of accreditation in radiation oncology as the result of a recent review by the American College of Radiology (ACR).

Radiation oncology (radiation therapy) is the careful use of high-energy radiation to treat cancer. A radiation oncologist may use radiation to cure cancer or to relieve a cancer patient’s pain.

“We’re honored to have received re-accreditation from the ACR,” Dr. Johnny Bernard Jr., Senior Medical Director of Radiation Oncology at SOMC, said. “It shows our commitment to improve the quality of care in our practice.”

The ACR seal of accreditation represents the highest level of quality and patient safety. It is awarded only to facilities meeting specific practice guidelines and technical standards developed by ACR after a peer-review evaluation by board-certified radiation oncologists and medical physicists who are experts in the field. Patient care and treatment, patient safety, personnel qualifications, adequacy of facility equipment, quality control procedures, and quality assurance programs are assessed.

“The Radiation Oncology Department has been accredited since 2003 and is the only center in the area that is accredited,” Wendi Waugh, Administrative Director of SOMC Cancer Services said. “We are proud to be able to provide quality and safe care to patients at SOMC and to have this affirmed by the ACR.”

For more information about SOMC’s Cancer Center, call 740-356-7490 or visit


Organic foods may be right for you

Eating healthy is always a good choice, but are some healthy options better than others? That’s a question that has led some to replace traditional fruits and vegetables with those that are grown organically.

It is not clear if organic food is more nutritious than conventionally produced food. A recent study suggests that the nutrient content is comparable between the two, though research is ongoing. However, there remain many other benefits to eating organically.

Many people choose to eat organic food to avoid pesticides that are used by conventional growers. Farmers spray pesticides to protect their crops from molds, insects and diseases, but the process can leave a residue on produce. According to the USDA, organic food carries significantly fewer pesticides than conventional produce.

Another factor to consider is that regulations governing organic foods severely restrict the use of food additives, processing aids and fortifying agents that are commonly found in nonorganic foods. These can include preservatives, artificial sweeteners, colorings and flavorings.

Organic food also has an environmental impact, as organic farming practices are designed to benefit the environment by reducing pollution and conserving both water and soil quality.

If you do choose to make the switch the organic foods, however, it is important to keep in mind that organic foods do tend to cost a little more and – because they aren’t treated with waxes or preservatives – may spoil faster. They can also look less uniform and can come in odd shapes, colors and sizes. No matter what form they come in, however, all organic foods pass the same quality and safety standards of conventional foods.

Additional information about organic foods can be found by visiting

SOMC Pediatric Associates accepting book donations

The office of SOMC Pediatric Associates is on its way to becoming a “Reach Out and Read” site.

“Reach Out and Read” is a nationwide program that promotes early literacy and school readiness in children ages 6-months to 5-years by giving books to patients who come in for “well” check-up visits. The program builds on the unique relationship between pediatric parents and medical providers and serves more than 4 million children and their families annually.

To become a “Reach Out and Read” site, SOMC Pediatric Associates must collect 1,000 books. To meet this goal, the office hosted a book drive during the month of May and is still accepting new and gently-used donations. Community members who would like to make a donation can drop off their books at the SOMC Pediatric Associates office, located on the First Floor of the Fulton Building on the SOMC Main Campus.

Community members are also invited to support SOMC Pediatric Associates by eating at the River House from 5 to 9 p.m. June 2. Ten-percent of all dine-in and carry-out orders made that evening at the restaurant will go toward the purchase of books for the Pediatric Associates office.


The River House is located at 711 Second Street, Portsmouth. To learn more, please visit or call 740-354-7788. For more information about the Reach Out and Read program, please visit