SOMC Recognized by Ohio First Steps for Healthy BabiesPosted on 08/21/2019

Southern Ohio Medical Center, along with other maternity centers in Ohio, is taking steps to promote its support of successful breastfeeding.

The Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies is a voluntary breastfeeding designation program through the Ohio Hospital Association and Ohio Department of Health that recognizes maternity centers in Ohio for taking steps to promote, protect, and support breastfeeding in their organization. A star is awarded for every two steps achieved in the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, as defined by the World Health Organization and Baby-Friendly USA. The initiative encourages maternity centers across the state to promote and support breastfeeding one step at a time.

To participate with the program, SOMC is providing information and hospital practices supportive of breastfeeding and the Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies program.

Annual Run For Your LIFE Set for August 31Posted on 08/16/2019

Runners and community members are invited to participate in SOMC’s annual Run For Your LIFE competition. The event will take place Saturday, August 31 at the Portsmouth LIFE Center.

Entrants may choose to participate in a 5K run/walk. 10K run/bike, or a duathlon. Registration and packet pick-up will begin at 6:30 a.m. with all events beginning at 7:30 a.m.

Cost of the run/bike is $25 per person and the entry for the duathlon costs $35.To register, visit

For additional race information, contact Brad Zieber at 740-356-7572, or by email at

Donate Blood for the American Red CrossPosted on 08/16/2019

SOMC and the American Red Cross will partner to host a blood drive open to hospital employees and the community from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. August 30 in Room 4 of the Micklethwaite Building on the Main Campus.

Donors will receive a free canvas tote bag while supplies last!

All participants and blood types are welcome and encouraged to donate. Donors must also bring a photo ID with their first and last name or their donor card.

Appointments are preferred, but not required. To schedule your appointment, call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) 0r visit (enter SOMC). Donors can also register with Rapid Pass by visiting the website above and scrolling down to find “Start your RapidPass.” You can also call ext. 8670 or 8223 to schedule.

2019 Miss Notre Dame Donates to SOMCPosted on 08/12/2019

Portsmouth River Days is almost here, and many of the River Days contestants are working diligently within the community on sharing their platforms.

All of the contestants work so hard to represent their schools and have a positive impact on the community. In doing so, many selflessly give back during their tenure as a River Days candidate and beyond.

Miss Notre Dame 2019 Lexi Graf has taken her message of Seat Belt Safety out in the community. Recently, she brought this platform to SOMC and graciously donated car seats.

We appreciate her generosity, and wish all of the River Days candidates good luck!

SOMC Hospice gives patient the ride of her lifePosted on 08/02/2019

Virginia Hammond is a patient at SOMC Hospice, and there’s something she wants people to know about her experience with end-of-life care: She loves it.

“I’ve always thought, if you’re going to stand up for something you’ve got to put your face out there and you’ve got to let other people know about it,” she said. “I tell people in the store about this!”

Virginia said she felt that way almost immediately, but her feelings have managed to grow even stronger with time.

“I think it’s great. I have friends here. They love me, they cry with me, they talk to me… They really make you feel like somebody.”

That relationship is why she was not surprised at all when her friends at hospice made one of her dreams come true during the 2019 Hospice Memorial Ride. She is used to them taking care of her and even compares their treatment of her to the way one might look after their child. So, when she expressed a desire to actually ride in the event, there was little question that they would make it happen.

Before the riders left SOMC’s East Campus, Virginia was helped onto the back of a motorcycle and driven around the parking lot. As someone who grew up riding motorcycles, it was an important experience to check off her list. After the event, staff gifted her a photo of the moment and it was quickly put on display in her room.

It’s that compassion and thoughtfulness that endears SOMC Hospice to so many people. It’s why the program draws huge crowds at Hike for Hospice and the Hospice Memorial Ride. It’s why the community donated $3 million so the facilities could be renovated and expanded.

And it’s why patients like Virginia Hammond come to regard the staff not as her caregivers, but as her friends. She’s even added them on Facebook.

“I come over here and it’s like, wow! They’re so glad to see me,” Virginia said. “It’s like we’re really good friends.”

As in any good relationship, though, Virginia also keeps in mind how the experience must be for those on the other side. She expressed sympathy for her nurses, understanding the emotional impact of forging deep connections with patients receiving end-of-life care. To her, it’s just another example of the quality of their character.

“They take a lot of it in stride because they have to,” she said. “I feel for them. I have empathy for them… It takes a special person to do this. They’re going to have to be soft. And warm. And cuddly.”

They have to be the kind of person to make a patient feel so loved that they want to tell everyone they meet, even the ones they just come across in the store.

SOMC Completes $3 Million Hospice Fundraiser, Announces GroundbreakingPosted on 07/26/2019

Southern Ohio Medical Center is proud to announce they have completed their $3 million Transcending Lives capital campaign. The funds allow for the renovation and expansion of SOMC Hospice, and a groundbreaking has been scheduled for August 2 at 10:30am at SOMC Hospice.

“The Transcending Lives campaign has been a top priority for the SOMC Development Foundation, and we’re excited to announce its completion,” Megan McKenzie, manager of SOMC Community Relations and Development, said.

SOMC began raising funds for the Hospice Expansion Project in August of 2016. It includes updating the existing facility as well as adding four new patient rooms, a large common gathering area, a meditation room, new restroom facilities, an upgraded kitchen and support areas to assist staff in providing excellent patient care.

Funds were raised through a combination of fundraising events and grants, as well as individual donations and support from SOMC’s Board of Directors, employees, vendors and guilds. The cause also received substantial support from family members of Hospice patients, and others who have been personally touched by the program.

“From the moment Transcending Lives began, community support has been tremendous,” SOMC President and CEO Randy Arnett said. “SOMC Hospice touches a lot of lives, and with this expansion we’ll be able to touch even more. We couldn’t be more thankful for everyone who has contributed to our campaign and made this project possible.”

To learn more about the Hospice Expansion Project, including other ways you can still support the effort, contact Mary Arnzen at 740-356-2504 or

Hospice Memorial Ride Set for July 27Posted on 07/05/2019

SOMC’s annual Hospice Memorial Ride will take place at noon on July 27. Riders will depart from SOMC Hospice, located on the hospital’s East Campus.

The event, which was created in memory of motorcycle enthusiast and hospice patient Ricky Bryan, is an important fundraiser for SOMC’s Hospice Caritas Fund.

“The Hospice Memorial Ride is an opportunity for those who have been touched by SOMC Hospice to show their support, as well as to recognize their loved ones who received end-of-life care at the facility,” Coordinator of Hospice Relations Ann Luther said.

The Hospice Caritas Fund has a direct impact on hospice patients and their families by ensuring those coping with a life-limiting illness receive comfort, support and care when hope for a cure is no longer possible.

Those interested in supporting SOMC Hospice can also make direct donations through the SOMC Development Foundation. To do so, visit or contact Mary Arnzen at 740-356-2504.

SOMC Laboratory Receives AccreditationPosted on 07/05/2019

The SOMC Laboratories including Main, Cancer Center and Anti-Coagulation Clinic, earned re-accreditation from The Accreditation Committee of the College American Pathologists (CAP).

The labs were notified of this award after they received an on-site inspection by CAP in April.

This accreditation proves that a laboratory is providing the highest quality of care for the patients they serve. According to the committee, the SOMC Laboratory is one of more than 8,000 CAP-accredited facilities worldwide.

“We are proud of our lab staff,” said Bridget Scott, SOMC Administrative Directory of Laboratory. “They ensure that we provide quality testing to our patients. The lab staff makes a difference in our patients’ care!”

Congratulations to the lab staff on an outstanding job!

New Classes Coming to the SOMC LIFE Center this Summer!Posted on 06/28/2019

With a new season comes new classes! The Portsmouth SOMC LIFE Center is adding new classes for their summer group fitness programming.

Newly added sessions include:

>> Ball Blast with instructor Shelly Wisener on Wednesdays at 5:15 p.m.

>> Pilates Sculpt with instructor Debbie Kielmar on Thursdays at 4 p.m.

Check out these new additions, and other classes, by visiting the following link:

These new classes will kick off the first week of July! For more information, please call the Portsmouth SOMC LIFE Center at (740) 3567650.

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