Triplets Delivery at ETMC Athens Goes ‘Smooth As Silk’

Anna Martinez-Espinoza with her babies (from left) Sol, Pablo and Astrella.
Anna Martinez-Espinoza with her babies (from left) Sol, Pablo and Astrella.

By Toni Garrard Clay

Anna Martinez-Espinoza and her husband, Pablo Espinoza, were surprised when they found out they had twins on the way, although they probably shouldn’t have been. Both have a set of twins in their family a generation back. Then about two months before delivery came the news that they were not having twins after all. They were having triplets.

“When they told me, I said, ‘Get my husband,’” said Martinez-Espinoza. “I was happy when I found out and surprised. I never imagined I was going to have twins … or triplets.” Martinez-Espinoza did not use any type of fertility drug, which increases the chances of multiple births.

A C-section was scheduled for Martinez-Espinoza this past Monday morning. ETMC Athens and a team of doctors and nurses prepared to the last detail for the procedure — including having a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) team on hand from Methodist Hospital of Dallas should critical care be needed. Continue reading “Triplets Delivery at ETMC Athens Goes ‘Smooth As Silk’”

Henderson County sick with influenza-like-illness

DSP 231: Sick 2008-01-03
(Flickr photo by Vern Hart)

ATHENS — An outbreak of influenza-like-illness (ILI) that has spread across the country has hit Henderson County hard.

East Texas Medical Center Athens Infection Preventionist Mary Pruitt said the Athens hospital is full with every bed taken, and has been that way for several days. She said the hospital emergency room has seen its record for number of patients seen in a day broken twice in the past week.

The ER, which usually averages well less than 100 patients, saw 146 one day.

The most current flu surveillance report from the Texas State Department of State Health Services lists activity as “widespread” and the intensity as “high.”

Nationally, the numbers are up as well.

“Reports of influenza-like-illness (ILI) are nearing what have been peak levels during moderately severe seasons,” said Dr. Joe Bresee, who is Chief of the Epidemiology and Prevention Branch in Centers for Disease Control’s Influenza Division. 

“While we can’t say for certain how severe this season will be, we can say that a lot of people are getting sick with influenza and we are getting reports of severe illness and hospitalizations,” said Bresee.

Pruitt said things are bad enough that “if you don’t have to go out, stay home.”

She also asked that people suffering with a common cold not come to the hospital or visit the emergency room in order to allow the hospital to treat those who are seriously ill.

Pruitt said one of the key indicators is fever. Flu and more serious instances of ILI often bring a temperature of 102 degrees or higher.

“People with a common cold will run a temperature more like 99.6 or 100,” she said, “and not have the higher temperature.”

Health professionals encourage everyone to practice common sense habits to protect yourself: 

  • Avoid close contact
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing.
  • Clean your hands.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Get plenty of sleep, be active, drink plenty of fluids, eat right.

Doctors have also taken the time to point out that CBD can help those already infected in dealing with current symptoms. CBD has been shown to relieve fevers, reduce pain, and act as a decongestant. There is more symptoms that are alleviated with CBD however we recommend that you check it out for yourself. Try wholesale CBD to read more about how it can help you. CBD is proven to have great health benefits. Buy CBD Products online today!

“The flu is a bad thing and you don’t want it,” said Pruitt.

ETMC unveils new helicopters

New ETMC helicopter(Press release from ETMC)

The East Texas Medical Center Regional Healthcare System unveiled today two new emergency transport helicopters, valued at over $9 million, to provide patients in East Texas with critical, fast access to the region’s only level 1 trauma center at ETMC Tyler.

The Eurocopter, EC135 P2+ helicopters will be stationed at ETMC Tyler and Titus Regional Medical Center in Mount Pleasant. The EC135 that currently is stationed in Tyler is being upgraded and will be positioned at ETMC Athens. This allows ETMC to provide high quality care and rapid transport to residents within a 150-mile radius around each helicopter base, covering 38 counties in East Texas.

“Since 1985, ETMC Air 1 has been flying the skies of East Texas and saving thousands of lives,” said Art Chance, vice president of operations for ETMC. “Reducing transportation time to ETMC Tyler’s level 1 trauma center, helps severely injured or seriously ill patients arrive within the ‘golden hour,’ significantly improving their chances for recovery.”

Jim Speier, operations coordinator, said safety is the focus on every flight. “Our goal is to safely complete each mission without having any issues. The new helicopters have updated safety features, including a terrain avoidance warning system that gives an audible voice alert message if an obstacle appears along the flight path. They also have a traffic collision avoidance system to warn the pilot of another aircraft in close proximity.”

Other features include live weather radar, which allows the crew to monitor area weather systems; an OuterLink satellite tracking system, which allows the communications center to track the entire flight; a black box recorder system, which stores critical data regarding each flight; night vision goggles; an automatic flight control system to assist the pilot; an improved environmental system, which allows for better patient comfort and a wire strike protection system that cuts power lines in the event of a wire strike.

The helicopters have updated medical equipment, including a new ventilator, which allows medical personnel to better treat patients of all ages. The overall interior has more room for equipment storage and is more user-friendly. The cabin also includes improved lighting, dual redundant oxygen storage systems and a restraint system to help when carrying larger patients.

“Each aircraft is staffed with a pilot, nurse and paramedic who are ready 24 hours, 7 days a week,” said program director Terri Rowden. “Air 1 is especially beneficial to our rural areas. We average 1,500 transports a year.”

The program is endorsed by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport and was the first program in Texas to receive accreditation in 1994.

ETMC Air 1 can fly up to 158 miles per hour, can transport up to two patients at a time and can fly as far as Houston on a single fuel load.