Orthopedic Care Unit Earns Blue Distinction

The Orthopedic Care Unit at Southern Ohio Medical Center has earned Blue Distinction from the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association for demonstrating expertise and a commitment to quality during the care and treatment of patients undergoing total knee and/or total hip replacement surgery.

“We have been working toward Blue Distinction for four years and are so proud to finally receive this recognition,” Malissa Warrick, nurse manager of the SOMC Orthopedic Care Unit, said. “We are always looking for ways to improve our patient-care processes, and are glad our efforts are helping the patients we serve.”

Dr. Duane Marchyn, an orthopedic surgeon at SOMC, explained that many new protocols and practices were put in place to help the OCU earn Blue Distinction. This included the development of an orthopedic patient educator position, the development of an orthopedic leadership team, and a constant department-wide focus on improving patient outcomes.

“In less than 10 months, we have seen a decrease in post-operative surgical site infections, as well as a decrease in length of stay for patients undergoing either a total knee or total hip replacement,” Dr. Marchyn said.

“The length of stay for a patient receiving a total knee replacement at SOMC has dropped from 3.3 days to three days, while the length of stay for a patient receiving a total hip replacement has lowered from 4.1 days to 2.9 days. These results are amazing and show that we are providing our patients the best care possible—and making sure they get home as quickly and as safely as they can.”

Blue Distinction Specialty Care is a national designation program that recognizes healthcare facilities for demonstrating expertise in delivering safe, effective, and cost-efficient care. The goal of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program is to help consumers find both quality and value for their specialty care needs, while encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the overall quality and delivery of care nationwide.

“Blue Distinction seeks to establish a consistent and continually evolving approach to evaluating quality and safety, which are also major priorities for our whole organization,” Warrick added. “It takes a team to achieve such distinction, and I thank every one for their dedication.”

2016 Southern Ohio Senior Games coming soon

Starting July 1, athletes at least 50 years of age can begin registering to compete in this year’s Southern Ohio Senior Games. The games give seniors an opportunity to compete in a variety of games, as well as participate in an athlete parade and closing ceremonies.

The games themselves will take place throughout the month of September and will be held in various locations across southern Ohio. The full schedule of events includes:

September 3, 7:30 a.m. at the SOMC Friends Center – 5k and 10k Run / 10k Cycling

September 3, 11:00 a.m. at the River Days Parade – Athlete Parade

September 10, 9:00 a.m. at the Portsmouth City Schools Track and Field Arena – Track and Field

September 14, 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. at the SOMC Life Center – Table Tennis and Pickle Ball

September 16 at 9:00 a.m. at the Franklin Valley Golf Course (Jackson, OH) – Golf (18 hole scratch for individuals)

September 17 at 9:00 a.m. at Earl Thomas Conley Park – Archery, Corn Hole, Horse Shoe, Disc Golf, Jukskei

September 20 at 10:00 a.m. at the West Portsmouth Basketball Complex – Basketball

September 21 at Sunset Bowling Lanes – Singles bowling

September 24 at 9:00 a.m. at Shawnee State University – Swimming

September 24 at 2:00 p.m. at Branch Rickey Stadium – Closing Ceremonies

Additional details about the games are available at SouthernOhioSeniorGames.org. Registration is available at TriStateRacer.com. There is a registration fee of $25 that includes one or more event. All registered participants will receive a Senior Games t-shirt.

For more information, you may contact Gary Roberts at 740-835-1925, Lyvette Mosley at 740-727-4948 or Libby Brisker at 740-357-5958.

Keep salad fresh for days with ‘Salad in a Jar’ layering technique

Packing your lunch is one way to eat healthy even when you’re on the go, but unfortunately some foods are more difficult to make ahead of time than others. Salads, in particular, often turn into limp, soggy messes when they’ve sat in a container for too long.

Fortunately, there’s an easy way around that problem.

“Salad in a Jar” is a simple layering method that keeps salads firm and fresh. It can be pulled off by using any tall, narrow container with a sealed lid. Mason jars will work great.

Once you have your container, simply add the ingredients in the following order to ensure a fresh, crisp, zesty salad:

1. Salad dressing (on the bottom)

2. Hard chopped fruits and veggies

3. Grains, beans or pasta

4. Cheeses and protein

5. Soft chopped fruits and veggies

6. Nuts or seeds

7. Salad greens

By separating the less absorbent ingredients and the dressing from the more delicate ingredients, the salad will stay ready to eat for about 4-5 days. Just give it a shake and pour it into a bowl!

May is National “Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention” Month

Most skin cancers are caused by too much exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun and manmade sources like tanning booths. Protect your skin from the sun when you go outside, especially during the long, warm summer days. Here are a few tips from the American Cancer Society to help your skin stay healthy.


  • Cover up: When you are out in the sun, wear clothing and a wide-brimmed hat to protect as much skin as possible. Protect your eyes with sunglasses that block at least 99% of UV light.
  • Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or higher: Put more on at least every 2 hours, and after swimming or sweating.
  • Seek shade: Limit your direct exposure to the sun, especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when UV rays are strongest.


  • It’s important to check your own skin, preferably once a month. A skin self-exam is best done in a well-lit room in front of a full-length mirror. You can use a hand-held mirror to look at areas that are hard to see, such as the backs of your thighs.
  • A spouse or close friend or family member may be able to help you with these exams, especially for those hard-to-see areas like your back or scalp.
  • The first time you examine your skin, spend time carefully going over the entire surface. Learn the pattern of moles, blemishes, freckles, and other marks on your skin so that you’ll notice any changes next time. Be sure to show your doctor any areas that concern you.
  • The best time to do this simple monthly exam is after a bath or shower. Check any moles, blemishes, or birthmarks from the top of your head to your toes. If you look at your skin regularly, you will know what’s normal for you.
  • Avoid tanning beds and sunlamps: Both can cause serious long-term skin damage and contribute to skin cancer.

SOMC purchases six new vehicles for Home Care and Hospice

Glockner New CarsWebSouthern Ohio Medical Center recently purchased six new Toyota Corollas from Glockner Honda Toyota. The vehicles will be used by SOMC Home Care and Hospice. Pictured here with one of the new vehicles is, from left to right, Ronda Jordan and Dennis Lintz from SOMC Home Care, Mike Glockner, Greg Gulker, Monica Holbrook and Brent Munn from SOMC Hospice and Tim Glockner.

For more information about SOMC Home Care and SOMC Hospice, visit www.somc.org.

SOMC offering free breast cancer screenings

SOMC is offering free breast cancer screenings in May and June for women who are uninsured or underinsured. Women who are screened may also receive same-day mammography if needed.

You should consider a screening if you are age 40 or older – or younger with a family history of breast cancer – or have an abnormal finding on a self-breast exam.

You can register by calling the SOMC volunteer office at 740-356-8234.

These screenings are made possible by the hands of Hope program, which is funded by The Columbus Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure in cooperation with Southern Ohio Medical Center.

For more information, visit somccancer.org.

SOMC Named Lung Screening Center of Excellence

Southern Ohio Medical Center has been named a Screening Center of Excellence by the Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA) for its ongoing commitment of providing local patients with appropriate lung cancer screenings. SOMC joins more than 370 screening centers across the country being recognized by the LCA.

“SOMC is dedicated to providing our patients with the highest quality care,” Jenny Woodyard, lung health navigator at SOMC, said. “Low dose CT screenings have shown to be the only proven way to detect lung cancer at an early and treatable stage, helping save tens of thousands lives a year. We are thrilled to be part of this elite group, setting an example for responsible screening practices nationwide.”

The LCA is dedicated to saving lives and advancing research by empowering people living with or at risk of lung cancer. Designated Screening Centers of Excellence work to meet comprehensive standards based on best practices developed by professional bodies such as the American College of Radiology, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, and the International Early Lung Cancer Action Program. These standards control screening quality, as well as radiation doses and diagnostic procedures within an experienced, multi-disciplinary clinical setting.

“We are proud and honored to work with SOMC as a Lung Cancer Alliance Screening Center of Excellence,” LCA President and CEO Laurie Fenton Ambrose said. “Their commitment to practicing responsible lung cancer screenings will lead to many advancements in research and many lives saved. They are an example to follow.”

SOMC offers lung cancer screenings to patients who meet the following criteria:

  • Age 55-77
  • Tobacco smoking history of at least 30 pack-years (which means, on average, you’ve smoked one pack a day for 30 years, or two packs a day for 15 years).
  • Current smoker or one who has quit smoking within the last 15 years
  • No history of lung cancer
  • No signs or symptoms of lung cancer

Screenings are covered by Medicare/Medicaid and private insurance companies. To learn more about the SOMC lung cancer screening program, or to refer yourself or someone you know, please call 740-356-LUNG.

Restore your health with Restorative Yoga

The SOMC Portsmouth LIFE Center will host Restorative Yoga sessions from 2 to 3:30 p.m. and 4 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday, May 1.

Restorative yoga seeks to achieve physical, mental, and emotional relaxation with the aid of props. While some restorative yoga poses are beneficial to the entire body, others target specific areas, such as the heart or the lungs.

Restorative Yoga provides healing for the mind and body. It is especially useful when you need to eliminate fatigue and stress that result from daily activities. It can also help you recover from illness and injury, or overcome emotional depression and anxiety that are caused by traumatic events such as divorce, loss of job and death of a beloved.

Participants must bring a Yoga mat, two blankets, two bed pillows, and two bath or beach towels. Participants should stay through the whole session and not leave the room early, as the final relaxation is very important and should be completed without interruptions in the room.

The event is open to the public and ages 14-18 if accompanied by a parent/guardian. General admission is $5. Each session is limited to 16 people.

To registration for the 2 p.m. session, please visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/restorative-yoga-2pm-tickets-23117833061.

To register for the 4 p.m. session, please visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/restorativeyoga-4pm-tickets-24264032374.

For more information, please call 740-356-7391.

SOMC receives $36,971 from Susan G. Komen Columbus

Southern Ohio Medical Center was recently awarded $36,971 from the Susan G. Komen® Columbus to support patient navigation services through the Hands of Hope program.

These services assist women by educating them about risk and how to access care through their insurance, as well as how to navigate the healthcare system to get screenings.

“The support we receive from Susan G. Komen Columbus has been tremendous for our community,” SOMC’s Breast Health Navigator Kim Richendollar said. “We are honored to be one of just 22 breast health programs to receive funding from Komen Columbus. Without their support, far too many women in our community would find themselves without the care they need.”

“Women who are diagnosed with breast cancer in Ohio are more likely to die from the disease than almost anywhere else in the United States due to multiple barriers such as access to affordable care and treatment and challenges to navigating the healthcare systems,” said Julie McMahon, director of mission at Komen Columbus. “In the communities we serve, we have identified issues contributing to those problems and focused our support to organizations that bring local solutions to those barriers.”

For more information about SOMC’s Hands of Hope, visit somc.org/cancer.