February Employees of the Month

Healthy Connections is proud to announce our February 2024 Employees of the Month: Charlotte Craig from our West Communities and Andrea Pilcher from our East Communities.

These recognitions are a testament to their outstanding contributions and embodiment of our core values: Community, Compassion, and Excellence. Each month, we celebrate team members who exemplify these principles, making a significant impact in their roles and in the lives of those we serve.

Charlotte Craig, a billing specialist who has been with Healthy Connections since 2017, works remotely to ensure the seamless operation of our financial services. Charlotte’s role is critical in maintaining the efficiency and effectiveness of our billing processes, directly affecting our ability to care for patients and support our staff. A colleague’s nomination praised her, stating, “Charlotte is extremely knowledgeable and always willing to help anyone. She is so kind and good-hearted, truly wanting the best for our patients and coworkers. She strives to ensure that our patients are taken care of in a timely manner, demonstrating her commitment to compassion and excellence in every task she undertakes.”

Andrea Pilcher, our East Communities winner, has been a pivotal part of Healthy Connections since 2016, serving as a Clinical Territory Lead at the Hot Springs Central clinic. Andrea’s role is instrumental in mentoring new nurses and providers, ensuring they receive top-notch training and support. Her dedication to excellence is evident in the way she goes above and beyond for her team, as highlighted by a coworker: “She provides excellent training and has ensured that both nurses and providers’ onboarding experience and training are of the highest quality.” Andrea’s efforts significantly enhance our clinical operations, contributing to the overall health and well-being of our communities.

We are delighted to honor Charlotte Craig and Andrea Pilcher for their exceptional contributions to Healthy Connections. Their dedication to our pillars of Community, Compassion, and Excellence not only strengthens our team but also inspires others to achieve their best. Congratulations to both Charlotte and Andrea on this well-deserved recognition.

Guide to Prenatal Infection Prevention

By Dr. Kara Worley
OBGYN
Healthy Connections

Dr. Kara Worley

Embarking on the journey of pregnancy is an extraordinary experience filled with hope, anticipation, and a profound sense of responsibility. As we observe International Prenatal Infection Prevention Month this February,

I am here to emphasize the importance of prenatal infection prevention. This month serves as a vital reminder for expectant mothers to adopt practices that safeguard their health and the well-being of their unborn babies. Understanding and implementing strategies to prevent infections during pregnancy is essential for the well-being of both mother and child.

Understanding Prenatal Infections

The risk of prenatal infections, including urinary tract infections (UTIs), group B streptococcus, and the Zika virus, is a significant concern during pregnancy. Awareness and preventive measures are key to protecting both expectant mothers and their babies from these potential threats. By incorporating effective pregnancy health practices into your daily routine, you can significantly reduce these risks.

Best Practices for Prenatal Infection Prevention

Hygiene and Diet

Good hygiene and a nutritious diet are foundational in preventing prenatal infections. Essential pregnancy hygiene tips, such as frequent handwashing, avoiding raw or undercooked meats, and steering clear of cat litter, can help prevent toxoplasmosis and other infections.

Regular Prenatal Visits

Consistent prenatal care is critical for monitoring both your health and your baby’s development. These visits allow for the early detection and treatment of any potential issues, ensuring a safer pregnancy.

Vaccinations During Pregnancy

Vaccinations play a crucial role in prenatal care, protecting both you and your unborn child from various infections. It’s important to discuss with your healthcare provider the vaccinations recommended during pregnancy, such as the flu shot and the Tdap vaccine.

Environmental Awareness

Being mindful of your environment is also crucial in preventing prenatal infections. Protect yourself against mosquito-borne diseases like the Zika virus by using insect repellent, and avoid areas with known disease outbreaks.

Local Resources for Prenatal Care in the Hot Springs Area

At Healthy Connections, we are committed to providing comprehensive maternal health services to the Hot Springs Area community. Our team of experts is ready to support you with best prenatal care practices for a healthy pregnancy.

Take Action During International Prenatal Infection Prevention Month

As we mark International Prenatal Infection Prevention Month, let’s take proactive steps toward safeguarding our pregnancies. To schedule your appointment and begin your journey toward a healthy pregnancy in the Hot Springs Area, call us at 888-710-8220.

For more information on prenatal care and to access valuable resources, visit Healthy Connections OB/GYN. Our website offers comprehensive guidance to support you through a healthy, informed pregnancy.

Ensuring a Healthy Start for Your Baby

International Prenatal Infection Prevention Month is a time to focus on the importance of preventing infections during pregnancAy. By engaging with recommended healthcare practices, you’re not only protecting yourself but also providing a healthier start for your child. At Healthy Connections, we’re here to support you every step of the way, ensuring a safe and healthy pregnancy for you and your baby in the Hot Springs Area.

Take the steps today towards a healthy tomorrow for your baby. We look forward to being a part of your support system and celebrating the joy of a healthy pregnancy together.

Dr. Kara Worley is an OBGYN with Healthy Connections in Hot Springs, Arkadelphia, and Malvern. Her enthusiastic approach makes her the ideal choice to guide you through your pregnancy. And her #DeliveredByMomCaughtByDrWorley philosophy tells you all you need to know about her. Call 888-710-8220 for appointments. Visit https://healthy-connections.org/ob for information.

 

Remodeled De Queen Clinic Opens March 4

Healthy Connections De Queen Clinic: Unveiling Our Newly Remodeled Space!

Healthy Connections is proud to announce the reopening of our De Queen Clinic in a beautifully renovated facility on Monday, March 4, 2024. Located at the familiar address of 1206 West Collin Raye Drive, but with a fresh new entrance on the North 13th St. side of the building, this marks a significant advancement in our mission to provide outstanding medical, dental, and behavioral health services to our community.

Exciting New Features:

  • A New Entrance: Patients will now find us more easily with our new entrance, complete with an overhang, on the North 13th St. side of the building.
  • Expanded Waiting Room: We’ve significantly increased the size of our waiting room for improved comfort and accessibility.
  • More Exam Rooms: To enhance our service delivery, we’ve added more exam rooms.
  • Larger Exam Rooms: Our exam rooms have been expanded to ensure privacy and comfort during your visit.
  • State-of-the-Art In-House Lab: With our new in-house lab, getting tests and results is faster and more convenient than ever.
  • Committed Healthcare Providers: Our team, including Carolin Hockersmith APRN, Inja Brown APRN, Angela Martin APRN, and Autumn Morales APRN, is eager to continue providing compassionate and expert care.

Our Commitment Continues: Beyond celebrating our 25th year of service, Healthy Connections continues to strengthen our dedication to the communities we serve. Accepting Medicaid, Medicare, ArKids 1st, and most insurance plans (in network), we strive to ensure that our services are accessible to everyone. For those without insurance, a sliding-fee scale is available, emphasizing our commitment to providing care regardless of financial circumstances. Additionally, as a bilingual clinic, we offer translation assistance to support our diverse community.

Join Us in This New Chapter:

We are not just reopening; we are reimagining how healthcare is delivered in De Queen. Our upgraded facilities reflect our enduring commitment to community, compassion, and excellence. We invite you to visit and experience the enhanced level of care and comfort designed with you in mind.

Healthy Connections is more than just a healthcare provider; we are your partner in health, now and in the years to come. We look forward to serving you in our newly remodeled De Queen Clinic and continuing our journey together towards better health for all.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 888-710-8220 or visit our website at www.healthy-connections.org.

Welcome to the Next Level of Care at Healthy Connections De Queen Clinic.

Healthy Connections Clínica De Queen: ¡Presentamos Nuestro Espacio Recién Remodelado!

Healthy Connections se enorgullece en anunciar la reapertura de nuestra Clínica De Queen en una instalación bellamente renovada el lunes, 4 de marzo de 2024. Ubicada en la conocida dirección de 1206 West Collin Raye Drive, pero con una nueva entrada en el lado de North 13th St. del edificio, esto marca un avance significativo en nuestra misión de proporcionar servicios excepcionales de salud médica, dental y conductual a nuestra comunidad.

Nuevas Características Emocionantes:

  • Una Nueva Entrada: Los pacientes ahora nos encontrarán más fácilmente con nuestra nueva entrada, equipada con un alero, en el lado de North 13th St. del edificio.
  • Sala de Espera Ampliada: Hemos aumentado significativamente el tamaño de nuestra sala de espera para mejorar la comodidad y accesibilidad.
  • Más Consultorios: Para mejorar nuestra entrega de servicios, hemos añadido más consultorios.
  • Consultorios Más Grandes: Nuestros consultorios se han ampliado para garantizar la privacidad y comodidad durante su visita.
  • Laboratorio Interno de Última Generación: Con nuestro nuevo laboratorio interno, obtener pruebas y resultados es más rápido y conveniente que nunca.
  • Proveedores de Salud Comprometidos: Nuestro equipo, incluidos Carolin Hockersmith APRN, Inja Brown APRN, Angela Martin APRN y Autumn Morales APRN, está ansioso por continuar brindando atención compasiva y experta.

Nuestro Compromiso Continúa:

Más allá de celebrar nuestro 25° año de servicio, Healthy Connections continúa fortaleciendo nuestra dedicación a las comunidades que servimos. Aceptando Medicaid, Medicare, ArKids 1st y la mayoría de los planes de seguro (en la red), nos esforzamos por asegurar que nuestros servicios sean accesibles para todos. Para aquellos sin seguro, está disponible una escala de tarifas variable, enfatizando nuestro compromiso de proporcionar atención independientemente de las circunstancias financieras. Además, como una clínica bilingüe, ofrecemos asistencia con la traducción para apoyar a nuestra comunidad diversa.

Únase a Nosotros en Este Nuevo Capítulo:

No estamos solo reabriendo; estamos reimaginando cómo se entrega la atención médica en De Queen. Nuestras instalaciones mejoradas reflejan nuestro compromiso duradero con la comunidad, la compasión y la excelencia. Le invitamos a visitar y experimentar el nivel mejorado de atención y comodidad diseñado pensando en usted.

Healthy Connections es más que un proveedor de atención médica; somos su socio en salud, ahora y en los años venideros. Esperamos servirle en nuestra Clínica De Queen recién remodelada y continuar nuestro viaje juntos hacia una mejor salud para todos.

Para más información o para programar una cita, llame al 888-710-8220 o visite nuestro sitio web en www.healthy-connections.org.

Bienvenido al Próximo Nivel de Cuidado en la Clínica Healthy Connections De Queen.

Justin Wise Wins Sheridan’s Community Service Award

We are excited to share some wonderful news from our Healthy Connections family!

This week, Justin Wise, our Practice Manager for the East Communities, including Sheridan, was honored with the Larry Freier Community Service Award by the Grant County Chamber of Commerce. This award is a recognition of Justin’s dedication and service to the communities of Sheridan and Grant County.

Justin, although relatively new to the Healthy Connections team, has been a significant presence in Sheridan for many years. It’s not the first time he has been recognized for his community service; he also received this award as a teenager. Justin’s commitment to the community is evident in his involvement in local events and initiatives, and his service on several boards, including the Grant County Chamber of Commerce.

At Healthy Connections, our core values are Community, Compassion, and Excellence. Justin perfectly exemplifies these values, making a substantial impact not just within our organization but also in the broader community. His efforts inspire us all and align with our mission to provide quality medical, dental, and behavioral health services to our communities.

Please join us in congratulating Justin Wise on this well-deserved honor. We are proud to have him as part of our team and are excited about the positive impact he will continue to have in our East Communities and beyond.

The Four C’s of HIV Care and the Power of U=U

Navigating a Healthier Future: The Four C’s of Comprehensive HIV Care and the Power of U=U

By Dr. Sharon Meador MD
Physician
Healthy Connections

Sharon Meador, MD

In the face of HIV, a disease that has touched countless lives globally, our mission at Healthy Connections has never been more critical. As we navigate the complexities of HIV care, our guiding principles, rooted in the Four C’s: Crisis, Condoms, Cultures, and Community, are bolstered by the transformative message of U=U (Undetectable = Untransmittable). This pivotal concept underscores that effectively treating HIV to the point where the virus becomes undetectable in blood tests results in zero risk of transmission through sex or from mother to child, marking a monumental step in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

Crisis: The First Step is Knowledge

The HIV epidemic remains a pressing health crisis, with an estimated 1.2 million people worldwide living with HIV. Confidential testing is the cornerstone of our approach, allowing individuals to gain vital knowledge about their status and the latest in treatment advancements. Understanding that nearly 20% of people living with HIV are unaware of their condition, we advocate for everyone to be tested at least once. The journey to managing HIV often begins with a simple step: taking one pill a day. This treatment approach has transformed HIV into a manageable condition, significantly enhancing quality of life.

Condoms: More Than Prevention

Condoms stand as our first line of defense against HIV transmission. Their correct and consistent use can dramatically reduce the risk of HIV, underscoring our dedication to sexual health education and access to condoms. Beyond HIV, condoms are instrumental in preventing other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), reinforcing their role in a comprehensive sexual health strategy.

Cultures: Embracing Diversity with Sensitivity

Understanding and respecting cultural differences is essential in our approach to HIV prevention and care. Our services are designed to be culturally sensitive, acknowledging the diverse beliefs and practices that influence health behaviors. This respect for diversity enhances our ability to connect with communities on a deeper level, fostering an environment where everyone feels seen and supported.

Community: A United Front Against Stigma

Our final ‘C’ highlights the indispensable role of the community in overcoming HIV-related stigma and discrimination. By fostering a supportive network through HIV support groups and comprehensive care services, we strive to create a space where individuals can find not just medical care but also a sense of belonging and acceptance.

U=U: A Message of Hope and Transformation

The U=U campaign is a beacon of hope, offering a powerful testament to the advances in HIV treatment. By achieving and maintaining an undetectable viral load, individuals living with HIV can lead healthy, fulfilling lives without fear of transmitting the virus to others. This message is integral to our education and treatment strategies, emphasizing that with proper treatment, HIV is not a barrier to a full, healthy life.

At Healthy Connections, we are committed to a world where comprehensive HIV care is accessible to all, guided by the principles of Community, Compassion, and Excellence. Join us in this vital journey by reaching out for testing, treatment, and support. We have locations throughout central and western Arkansas that can provide help and hope. Call us at 888-710-8220. Learn more about our services at https://healthy-connections.org.

Together, we can navigate a healthier future for everyone affected by HIV.

Dr. Sharon Meador is a dedicated physician at the Little Rock Midtown clinic of Healthy Connections, a Federally-Qualified Health Center (FQHC) celebrating more than 25 years of community care. As a certified HIV Specialist, Dr. Meador provides primary care, HIV treatment, MAT, LGBTQ+ services, PrEP, and more. She is also a Ryan White HIV/AIDS Medical Provider. For appointments, call 888-710-8220. Discover how we embody our philosophy of Community, Compassion, and Excellence at www.healthy-connections.org.